January 30, 2019

Welcome to The Bridge, a weekly update of the Rappahannock River District of the United Methodist Church 
A Disciple's Path
It was approximately 45 years ago that I went through confirmation classes, learned about John Wesley, embraced United Methodism, was confirmed, and joined Central United Methodist Church.
During the confirmation classes the teachers emphasized that each confirmand should prayerfully make a choice regarding the commitment of joining the UMC. The teachers had us look at the membership liturgy to be sure we were willing to uphold the membership vows. By the end of the confirmation sessions I was absolutely sure I wanted to take and uphold the membership vows.
Some United Methodists are worried and anxious about the upcoming General Conference,  some are feeling lost in the “what ifs” of the three plans and 70 petitions, and I'm glad to hear that some are working to stay focused on making disciples.
I don't pretend to know if any changes will be made to the 2016 UM Book of Discipline, but I know one thing; after the February Called General Conference, I will remain faithful to my vows of supporting the UMC by my prayers, presence, gifts, service, and witness.
If you feel like you've lost sight of the vows you've made and the meaning of the commitment, let me recommend the helpful study and video called, “A Disciple’s Path.” This resource emphasizes the membership vows of prayers, presence, gifts, service, and witness. This is a six-week study but can also be stretched a little longer. This first session is available for free. This resource is available at https://www.cokesbury.com/product/9781501858055/a-disciples-path-dvd/?rank=11&txtSearchQuery=discipleship. I think rediscovering basic spiritual and theological commitments could be a path to hearing God's will for the UMC.
If you don't see any pictures, be sure that you have clicked " Display Images Below" at the top so you can see all the information in this week's newsletter. Many inserts for church events are considered Images.
Grants Available

The Rappahannock River District Board of Missions is an incorporated elected body of laity and clergy providing leadership and support for a variety of mission opportunities. Our focus areas include The Heartwood Center, Crossroads Mission Center, El Salvador UMC along with Volunteers in Missions, the Builder's Club, support of new faith communities and expansions of existing faith communities are our main ministry areas. We also maintain grant money to support local church mission outreach events.  

Fredericksburg UMC is working toward sending teams to assist with hurricane relief in 2019 and 2020. They will be open to members from other area churches. The first step is training. Please see information below.
Youth Retreat Registration
Spaghetti Dinner Benefit - Afton UMC February 9 th

Betty Smith Gaskins Scholarship Fund
A ll are invited to Afton UMC on Saturday, February 9 th for an Early Valentine’s Day Spaghetti Dinner from 5:00 to 7:00 PM. The church is located at 5130 Hacks Neck Road, Ophelia, VA.

Celebrate Valentine’s Day early with delicious homemade spaghetti and meatballs, served up with fresh salad, Italian garlic bread, and beverages. Top off your meal with Afton’s tempting homemade desserts. Bring the whole family and your sweetheart. 

The fundraiser will support the Betty Smith Gaskins Memorial Scholarship Fund. The Fund awards a scholarship a nnually to a deserving second-year student, attending Rappahannock Community College. 

Please come out to enjoy wonderful food and fellowship; all while supporting this worthwhile cause. Eat all you care to eat and give all you care to give. Your support and all donations will be greatly appreciated.  
Women Leaders
Next Generation
Register for this 2-day event by February 1, 2019 .
Marg Kutz

Registration fee: $75 (includes lunch both days but not your purchase of the book)
Make checks payable to:
Margaret T. Kutz and mail to: 13709 Sandy Oak Road
Chester, VA 23831
Or pay through Venmo:


Now Hiring......
McKendree United Methodist Church at 4347 Manfield Road, in King William County is searching for a pianist to provide music at its weekly 9:30 am Sunday worship service. This is a paid position, salary negotiable. McKendree is located about 20 minutes east of Mechanicsville. Contact Pastor Betty Jo Sims at 804-839-2769 if interested.
Wright's Chapel UMC , Ruther Glen, is looking for a part-time Music Director. Key duties include leading two Sunday morning traditional services and one contemporary service. To recruit, develop and engage members and musicians to be involved in the worship experience. Piano (Keyboard) and Singing skills are required. For details, visit the Virginia Conference website at www.vaumc.org/jobs

St Matthias UMC , 426 Deacon Rd, Fredericksburg, is in need of an assistant nursery caregiver every Sunday morning, 8:30-12:30, and occasional hours during special events. Minimum qualifications are: you must have experience working with toddlers and infants; have a Christian spiritual foundation; be dependable, trustworthy, patient, and flexible; be able to cooperate with parents and church members; present a good personal appearance; be at least 21 years of age; and, at a minimum, have graduated from high school. A criminal background check is required for employment and you must be able to be CPR and First Aid certified (cost for certification will be paid by St Matthias). For further information, please contact Pastor Bert Cloud, 540-373-8759, or Peg Jones, 540-775-5729. The deadline for application is 30 January 2019 .
The Council of Bishops has called a Special Session of the General Conference of The United Methodist Church to be held February 23-26, 2019 in St. Louis, Missouri. The purpose will be to act on a report from the Council of Bishops based on the recommendations of the  Commission on a Way Forward . The 32-member Commission was appointed to examine paragraphs in The Book of Discipline concerning human sexuality and exploring options to strengthen the unity of the church.

You can follow the event from the conference website by clicking this link:

Youth Embracing Service (YES!)
Youth Embracing Service (YES!)
The Heartwood Center is organizing and sponsoring a monthly day of service and team building during the school year for Middle School and High School students. 
Every third Saturday of the month a service project, team building activities, recreation, Bible study and lunch will be scheduled. The events will be on Saturdays 10am-3pm at 64 Hartwood Church Road, Fredericksburg 22471 ( behind the Hartwood Fire Station ).
Future dates: February 16, March 16, April 20, May 18.
All youth need to complete a registration. Go to:  www.theheartwoodcenter.org/registration-info/. Adult volunteers are welcome.
Need more information? Email  youthcamp@theheartwoodcenter.org  or call 540.788.9838.  
Rev. Gayle Porias
Pastor Mount Horeb UMC
The Heartwood Center Director 
Rappahannock River District
Upcoming Meetings
Jan. 30 Finance Committee, FUMC
Jan. 31 Heartwood Board, New Hope
Feb. 4 Connectional Ministries, District Office
Feb. 5 Ordained Ministry
Feb. 14 Church Location & Building
Feb. 21 Heartwood Board, New Hope
Feb. 23 - 26 Called General Conference


District Superintendent: Rev. Dr. Theodore Smith
DS Email:   rappahannockriverds@vaumc.org Cell: 540.419.5131

2019 District Co-Lay Lay Leader:

2019 District Co-Lay Leader:

District Lay Servant Ministry Director  Dottie Garrison dottiegarrison@yahoo.com
Heartwood Director: Rev. Gayle Porias gayleporias@vaumc.org
Crossroads Minister: Rev. Mark Roscoe markroscoe@vaumc.org

District Secretary: Lynn Manley rappahannockriverdistrict@vaumc.org
Cell: 804.304.8566

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)