Welcome to The Bridge, a weekly update of the Rappahannock River District of the United Methodist Church! 
IMPORTANT!!!!! TO SEE ENTIRE NEWSLETTER:
Because this newsletter is so large email providers hide the bottom section. You may see "Message Clipped. View Entire Message" at the bottom of your email. Please click that to see the entire newsletter.  
Why Do We Do It?
He asked him a third time, "Simon, son of John, do you love me?" Peter was deeply hurt that he had asked him a third time, "Do you love me?" So he told him, "Lord, you know everything. You know that I love you!" Jesus told him, "Feed my sheep. ”  John 21:17
I must say I was impressed! I opened this week’s September 11 th edition of the USA Today newspaper, scanned the first three pages, and the article heading immediately caught my attention, “FEMA’s faith-based partners play a major role in disasters.” The article was written by the paper staff writer, Paul Singer. I read the article because I was curious to see whether there would be any mention of how the UMC responds to disasters and is responding now. It’s not that I want to boast on our UMC response, but really wanted to know which faith communities respond in which ways. Sure enough, there in the third paragraph of Singer’s article are these words,

“Likewise, the United Methodist Committee on Relief is known for its expertise in case management. After the initial cleanup – where the Methodists have work crews helping pull mud out of houses – the church sends trained volunteers into the wreckage to help families navigate the maze of FEMA assistance, state aid programs and private insurance…UMCOR also trains other non-profits to send their own case managers into the disaster zones.”

Why does the UMC have an agency like the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR)? We (the UMC) have UMCOR so that we can put into action the love of Christ, especially loving and caring for persons in situations like natural disasters. The UMC gives 100% of all donated funds straight to UMCOR because we want to follow the command Christ gave Peter so long ago – we want to feed HIS sheep. The third paragraph of Singer’s USA Today article isn’t the only paragraph that shares the disaster ministry of the UMC’s UMCOR. Singer tells readers,

“The United Methodists have 20,000 trained volunteers around the country who can be called up for early response teams, basically small crews that can help with debris removal and home cleanup, they are trained, they are badged, they are background checked and they are part of the team that can be called up on short notice to respond...they have a person who is a designated listener so that [a] person can sit down and be an ear for somebody if the homeowner needs that.”

Truthfully, the UMC UMCOR ministry could easily fill lots of pages of writing in any publication, but we can’t just rest on our laurels because there’s more to be done. There are more folks in the US and around the world that need us. There are also many in our communities who need us to leave our places of worship each Sunday and put the love of Christ into action. Jesus is still asking Christians, “Do you love me?”

Pastor Ted

The Virginia Conference and the Rappahannock River District are responding to recent hurricanes. 

We have several collection points for Flood Buckets. Our deadline to have them to the Conference Office is September 20. Please look for a separate email each week entitled "Flood Bucket Update" for the latest info on Packing Events and Drop Off Locations.

If you have any questions, please contact Pastor Penny Rasnake, our District Disaster Coordinator.
Call for Nominations for At-Large Delegates at Annual Conference 2018
At our District Conference at Wright's Chapel UMC on Saturday, November 18, 2017 the District will elect At-Large Delegates for next year's Annual Conference in Hampton (June 15 - 17, 2018). 

We need to elect 28 At-Large Delegates and 9 reserve delegates.  In order to be on the ballot, you need to complete a nomination form and return it to the District Office by November 1.   You can nominate yourself or someone else (with their permission). Please click on the links below for either a PDF or Word version of the nomination form and return it to:

Rappahannock River District Office  
Mail: PO BOX 100, Ladysmith, VA 22501 
FAX  804.448.8328 (call to confirm receipt)
RAPPAHANNOCK RIVER DISTRICT BUILDER’S CLUB
The Rappahannock River District is one of the fastest growing districts in the Virginia Conference. We have been given a staggering opportunity to reach new people with the Good News of God’s love in Jesus. One of the ways we do this on our district is through the Builder's Club.

The Builder’s Club is a group of Laity and Clergy from across the Rappahannock River District whose members have pledged financial support for building new churches and renovating or expanding existing church facilities on the district.

The Club raises money by issuing a call to its members two or three times a year. When members receive a call letter, they will receive information about the church, the location and information about the project. Members are then asked to respond with a donation to the Club. In the past, the Club has raised between $5,000 and $11,000 per call. There is no minimum or maximum pledge amount.
All donations are tax exempt and you decide the amount you wish to give for each call. No more than three calls will be asked of you during any given year You can opt out of the Builder’s Club any time if your circumstances change.
You are invited to prayerfully consider becoming a part of the growing ministry of our district by enrolling today! Simply click the button below to send your contact information to the District Office.
Come experience the blessing! 

Nehemiah 2:18
I told them how the hand of my God had been favorable to me and also about the king's words which he had spoken to me. Then they said, "Let us arise and build." So they put their hands to the good work.
Carol Draper from the Conference Treasurer’s Office will be with us to discuss the annual statistical data required by the General Church. This includes how you record membership, ethnic diversity, small group participation, community outreach, as well as church assets and liabilities, income and expenses. She will provide line by line detail for you to take back to your church. Since apportionments are based on the data entered in these statistical tables, it is important that we categorize expenses, members, etc. correctly. This will be useful information for anyone who enters your statistics - whether it’s your pastor, treasurer, membership secretary or anyone else. 
Statistics Training
Two Statistics Training Classes will be offered on our District this fall:

Thursday, October 12 at 7:00pm at St. Matthias UMC, Fredericksburg
(426 Deacon Road, Fredericksburg, VA 22405)
or
Tuesday, October 24 at 7:00pm at Warsaw UMC, Warsaw
(287 Main Street, Warsaw, VA 22572)

Please register by contacting the District Office at rappahannockriverdistrict@vaumc.org or
calling 804.448.8326 so we have plenty of handouts.
 
CORN HOLE TOURNAMENT
CORN HOLE TOURNAMENT
HOSTED BY
SHEPHERDS CHURCH
(163 FLEETS MILL RD ST. STEPHENS CH. VA)
SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 16, 2017
4:00PM
FIRST PLACE PRIZE - $100.00
SECOND PLACE PRIZE - $50.00
ENTRY FEE: CAN GOOD FOR KING AND QUEEN FOOD PANTRY
FREE FOOD AND FUN FOR ALL!!!!
Registration is now open for the  Live Your Faith Bold and Brave  Women's Conference to be held on our district at Ebenezer UMC in Stafford on Saturday, September 30, 2017 featuring Nicole Unice, Author of  Brave Enough  and Ministry Director at Hope Church.

Sessions include:
  • Created With a Purpose
  • Navigating Life’s Up’s & Down’s
  • Scheduling Time for God
  • Be Bold & Brave with Healthy Habits
Registration: $20.00 includes breakfast and lunch
Onsite child care available, $5.00 per child and includes lunch (max $20 per family)

Please click below for links to information on the event:

Live Your Faith Bold and Brave Women's Conference links:
Interested Vendors can contact:
 Dottie Longest:
or Judy Hall: 804-453-3747
YOU ARE CORDIALLY INVITED TO JOIN US FOR:
              THE OBSERVANCE OF OUR
 187th HOMECOMING CELEBRATION
OF HENDERSON UNITED METHODIST CHURCH
  
72 Henderson Drive, Route 202, Callao VA
on SUNDAY, OCTOBER 8th, 2017 AT 10:00AM

CELEBRATING THE THEME   "Pressing On in the Strength of Christ"
PASTOR SHAUNA D. McCRANIE WILL BRING THE MORNING MESSAGE
SPECIAL MUSIC WILL BE PROVIDED BY STUART O'BIER AND RON JEWELL
AND THE CHOIR.
FOLLOWING THE SERVICE, A DELECTABLE LUNCHEON, FIT FOR A KING,
WILL BE SERVED.
PTSD Caregiver Workshop
Zion UMC will host a workshop for Caregivers of those with PTSD on October 21 from 10:00am - 2:00pm.

Two retired army chaplains; Rev. David Canada, and Rev. Kenneth M Ruppar, will lead us in a day of Bible study, prayer, spiritual reflection and coping skills.

Lunch will be provided (free will offering). The workshop is free. 

Please RSVP to Pastor Kim Barker-Brugman at  pastorkim10@gmail.com  so we can plan the proper number of lunches.

Zion UMC, Spotsylvania Courthouse, 8700 Courthouse Road, Spotsylvania, VA 22553
Contemporary Worship Leader Needed
Fredericksburg UMC is searching for a Contemporary Worship Leader to oversee the ministry of Fredericksburg UMC as it relates to leading and organizing the music for contemporary worship.
Part time, 20 Hours/week
Click below for more information.

Save the Dates: 

Sept. 15—16 LAY SERVANT TRAINING      Regester Chapel
Oct. 12      STATISTICS TRAINING                St. Matthias
Oct. 24      STATISTICS TRAINING                Warsaw
Nov. 18     DISTRICT CONFERENCE  & TRAINING     Wright’s Chapel UMC
  
District Superintendent: Rev. Dr. Theodore Smith
District Lay Leader:
Ms. Debbie Dietrich      debbiedietrich6@gmail.com
District Associate Lay Leaders:
District Lay Servant Ministry Director Greg Sokolowski  Gregory.sokolowski@navy.mil
Heartwood Director: Rev. Gayle Porias gayleporias@vaumc.org
District Secretary: Ms. Lynn Manley rappahannockriverdistrict@vaumc.org
Administrative Assistant: Ms. Pam Blalock pamblalock@vaumc.org
Mailing Address: PO BOX 100, Ladysmith, VA 22501 Phone   804.448.8326     FAX        804.448.8328 
Office Location: Inside Wright’s Chapel UMC at 8063 Ladysmith Road, Ruther Glen, VA (do not use for mail)
 
District Calendar
Sept. 15 - 16 Lay Servant Training
Sept. 19 Ordained Ministry
Sept. 23 District UMW Annual Mtg.
Sept. 26 -27 District Clergy Retreat
Sept. 27 Clergy Officers Meeting