The Current Week in Review
August 31, 2018
Issue focuses on plans
for A Way Forward

The September issue of The Current is now posted online and should be arriving in your mailboxes this weekend.

The issue takes a look at the three plans being offered to delegates to the special called session of General Conference in February. The center spread includes a side-by-side comparison of each plan, which was compiled by Bishop Scott Jones, resident bishop of the Texas Annual Conference. There is also a story from various delegates, providing a glimpse into some of the considerations facing the delegates when they gather in St. Louis.

Also included in the issue are stories from local churches on the ministries and activities to which they are involved this summer.

To read or download the September issue, click on the cover above.
WCA officers in IGRC for a weekend

Keith Boyette and Walter Fenton, president and vice president of the Wesleyan Covenant Association (WCA) will be in the Illinois Great Rivers Conference to share insights, respond to questions and engage in discussion with interested clergy and laity regarding the upcoming Special General Conference and the Way Forward Process. Their schedule to date is as follows:
  • Friday, Sept. 14 - Marion Aldersgate UMC, 9 a.m. to noon
  • Friday, Sept. 14 - Fairfield First UMC, 2 p.m.
  • Saturday, Sept. 15 - Belleville St. Matthew UMC, 9 a.m.
  • Sunday, Sept. 16 -- Keith Boyette preaching at Alton Main Street UMC, 8, 9 and 11:15 a.m.

The WCA is backing the Traditional Plan and is offering several amendments as well.
New group offering new, fourth 'Simple Plan'

A new group, Methodists for the Simple Plan, promotes legislation it says will allow full participation of LGBTQ individuals in the life of the denomination. The plan is one of several alternative proposals headed to General Conference 2019.
Bishop, conference working with UM Village
to repair relationships, build trust

Bishop Frank J. Beard and conference officials are working with the administration and board at the United Methodist Village in Lawrenceville following a summer of financial stress triggered by the state’s delay in reimbursements of Medicaid payments for residents at the main and North campuses.

Beard held two listening sessions in Lawrenceville Aug. 23 which was also attended by IGRC Coordinator of Missions and Outreach Bunny Wolfe. IGRC Director of Administrative Services Mike Potts recommended a consultant from Atlanta, Ga., that has worked with other agencies within the United Methodist Association of health and welfare agencies.
Update: UMV administrator resigns

The following statement was issued by the United Methodist Village Board following a special meeting Aug. 28:

The Board of Directors of the United Methodist Village would like to inform you that we have accepted the resignation of Paula Mc Knight as CEO of UMV effective immediately. We thank her for the contributions she has made to our mission, especially three straight years of a 5-Star rating. We wish her well in the next phase of her career.

The Board is immediately beginning a search for new leadership. Details of that process are forthcoming. We appreciate everyone’s support through this important transition.

If you have questions, please direct them to Nancy Myers, Chair of the Board at or Consultant, Larry Minnix at
Camp was a blast!

Bishop Frank Beard discusses his summer where he preached at Beulah Youth Institute.

Beard noted, " There are three things that stood out to me:

1. The hunger and enthusiasm the kids showed for the gospel.
2. The passion, richness, and depth of the worship.
3. The low participation of our clergy at the camp."

"As I offered my personal thanksgiving I could not help wondering why more of our clergy are not present at camp to help reap the abundant available spiritual harvest," he said.

"While at camp I clearly heard Jesus asking for more laborers. The harvest is still plentiful and more workers, especially Clergy, are needed," Beard wrote.. "All of our camps will benefit and grow as we rediscover them as fertile fields for making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world." 
Bishop issues challenge to IGRC churches

Bishop Beard has issued a challenge to IGRC congregations to grow their mission outreach:

Our commitment to generosity is one of the strengths of our denomination. 

Allow me to issue a challenge to each of the IGRC churches : I invite you to host a special Sunday between now and the end of the year dedicated to helping community ministries. You pick the Sunday, you choose the project, you collect and distribute what is gathered. 

Some of you will want to collect can goods to help stock a food pantry, some will want to collect blankets to be used by first responders, some will choose to collect back packs, and others will want to gather items that can be used to comfort someone that is grieving or sick. Of course, you can always bring items and funds for the OCOK campaign. The list of possibilities is endless.

My suggestion is to advertise what you are doing, set a realistic goal, invite folks to bring their items to worship, bless and consecrate the items on the altar and then distribute them to the places that have been selected. 

I look forward to hearing that your church took the challenge. If you need ideas just call the Midwest Distribution Center. There are many ways to let folks know that we care.

Generosity is contagious, let’s start an epidemic!
Charge Conference forms on church portal page

The forms for the 2018 Charge Conferences are now available through the Church Portal page on the IGRC website.

Churches can access them by clicking on the Church Portal Page link on the IGRC Homepage. Click on the appropriate District from a dropdown menu. Select the appropriate church from a second drop-down menu and then enter the six-digit GCFA code as your password. Once on the Church Portal Page, select 2018 Charge Conference Forms, which will provide links to all of the forms.

Please note: complete ALL forms that apply to your congregation. Some forms (such as Parsonage Report, Pastor’s Report or Lay Servant Report) are listed as optional, but are required if you own a parsonage; each pastor needs to complete a pastor’s report as do lay servants.

Links to all of the “paper” forms which attach to the electronic forms are also provided for download and completion. Please attach these forms on the appropriate form.

A training event will be held from 10 a.m. to noon on Tuesday, Aug. 28 at the Conference Center. This session will be recorded and made available for playback. All other training events will be coordinated through your District offices.

Please contact your District Offices with any questions.
Call for Early Response Teams in Wisconsin

Early Response Teams are needed immediately in Wisconsin to assist with the aftermath of the recent tornadoes, heavy rain, and straight line winds.
Call or text Lynnette Jordan at 262-370-0707. Or email at:
Missionaries to itinerate in IGRC
Les and Debbie Dornan
Les Dornon  and  Debbie Dornon  are missionaries at a hospital in Nepal and will be in the Conference from Sept. 4 -18.
Mary Zigbuo  serves as health project manager for the Liberia Episcopal Area. She will be in the Conference Sept. 25-30.
Visit the IGRC Missionary Itineration calendar . Find a time you would like to have the Dornans or Mary Zigbou join you and contact Carolyn Yockey, 309-452-3936 or  to schedule a time for your visit. The Dornans' and Mary Zigbou's schedule will take travel time into consideration; stops should be relatively convenient and not require excessive miles each time.

Churches are asked to be supportive with meals, room and expenses.
United Methodist Center Contact Information
USPS (U.S. Postal Service)
P.O. Box 19207, Springfield, IL 62794-9207
Office Phone: 217-529-2040
UPS and FedEx deliveries only use the street address:
United Methodist Center
5900 S. 2nd Street
Springfield, IL 62711
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