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What's Happening at UMC Madison 1/24/22


Sunday, January 30th is 4th Sunday after the Epiphany

10:00am - Family Worship Service

11:00am - Fellowship Hour

Important letter from Pastor Kate

Friends of the UMC in Madison,

It is with a heavy heart that I need to let you know that I have informed our District Superintendent, Rev. William Williams that I am accepting a job offer to become the Regional Director of Resourcing for the northern region of this GNJ Annual Conference beginning July 1, 2022.

A short time ago, I was invited to apply for this position by a colleague and employee of the conference office. At the time, I did not know of the position, nor was I looking to be reappointed to somewhere new. However, I was encouraged to apply because I was told that I bring the necessary skills to do this job well in a season of tremendous change for our conference. Surprisingly, I was informed that I was being offered the position last Sunday.

Making the decision in just a few days has been a very challenging one. I love the United Methodist Church in Madison and the work we have been able to do together over the last four years. I have been deeply grateful for this appointment and for each one of you. This church has given me the opportunity to offer leadership and support to so many exciting things:

  • To lead a wonderful staff and lay leadership team
  • To work with you to establish a vision, mission statement, and core values that this church will continue to build upon in the future
  • To navigate exciting challenges with you, like whether to take on a daycare and what to do with our properties.
  • To walk with you through in the discernment of becoming a Reconciling Congregation
  • To find new ways to help us reclaim our history and invest in our relationship to Drew University
  • To establish a tuition assistance fund for low income families at Acorn Academy
  • To formalize a regular internship process for Drew University MDiv students
  • To navigate a world-wide crisis together – and in the process, find new ways of offering pastoral support, spiritual education, and worship online. 
  • To begin an international student ministry and help students who are far from home feel supported and loved.

Friends, in just four years – even amid many challenges and more work yet to do – I believe we have faithfully lived into the call of God for this church and as a result, lives have been changed. You have taken faithful, resilient steps in seasons of joy and challenge. I believe you will continue to do so going forward because that is just who you are. I will forever be grateful for the opportunity I have had to be your pastor.

Bishop Schol and the superintendents have just begun the process of making new appointments at this time, and I have faith that they will identify the very best person to serve you going forward. The SPRC and I commit to working with the Cabinet and the congregation over these next 6 months to make this transition for you as smooth as possible. 

I invite you to keep this congregation, myself and my family, and the Cabinet in your prayers for the well-being of this church. If you have any questions or concerns about the transition process, you can direct them to Kevin O’Brien, the chairperson of the SPRC: If you have any questions or concerns for me, you can call (973-377-1231) or email me:

Thank you for leading with me, for being my church family, and for your support that goes above and beyond. The next pastor assigned to you does not yet know how lucky they are, or how much fun they will have. My prayers go with you.

Grace & Peace, 

Pastor Kate

2022 Appointments | United Methodist Church of Greater New Jersey (

Important letter from the SPRC

January 23, 2022

To our Friends of the United Methodist Church in Madison,

As chair of the Staff Parish Relations Committee (SPRC), it is my responsibility to share with you the news that we will be receiving a new pastoral appointment effective July 1, 2022. As announced during worship this morning, and further described in a letter from Pastor Kate, she has accepted a job offer to become the Regional Director of Resourcing for the northern region of the GNJ Annual Conference.

During these past 4 years, Pastor Kate has been a tremendous leader for our congregation. She has helped us navigate through many challenges and has helped us create a vision that will guide us for years to come. We are eternally grateful for her contributions and will deeply miss her faithful leadership, support and guidance.

Transition can be a difficult time, and I ask you to be in prayer with Pastor Kate and the SPRC, and also the Bishop and the Cabinet as they work towards the appointment of a new pastoral leader for our church. We all move forward from this point, knowing in our hearts that God is with us and will guide us down the path that best serves God’s needs.

I, along with the entire SPRC, am here to ensure we have a smooth transition over these upcoming months. We pledge to keep the congregation informed as we progress through the transition. We will remain in close contact with District Superintendent Reverend Williams, who will be assisting us throughout this process. We also ask for your support, as there are many ways for members of the congregation to become involved with the transition. One example of this support will be the creation of a Transition Team. The Transition Team will be comprised of persons who can provide good insight into the nature of our congregation and will play a key role in helping to manage the transition process. This week, the SPRC will be asking several of you to serve on the Transition Team. We ask that you prayerfully consider our request and hope you will agree to join us on this journey.

While saying goodbye can be difficult, we want you to know that each and every one of you will be in our prayers as we prepare for a new chapter in our ministry. Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions or concerns.


Kevin O’Brien

Chair, Staff Parish Relations Committee

Combined Madison, Chatham, & Summit UMC

Youth Group Gathering!

Sunday, February 6, 2022


The United Methodist Church in Madison

24 Madison Ave

Madison, NJ 07940


Stewardship Series: Greater Than

The whole

is greater than the sum of its parts.  -Aristotle

One aspect of growing as a disciple of Christ means that we are committed to responding to God’s wonderful generosity. Being generous is about aligning our priorities with God’s priorities, aligning our hearts with God’s heart. We grow in that generosity as part of our individual spirituality, we also grow in generosity within our faith community as the body of Christ. The disciples in the book of Acts understood the power of community and growing together in discipleship. 

Together is greater than


Generosity is greater than

storing up. 

And thriving is greater

than survival. 

Join us for this series as we consider all that God has shared with us and what it means to live a life that is 'Greater Than.'


Moment for Dreaming Together

What is most important to me about our church?

What is one thing I would change about our church?

Email Pastor Kate with your answers! @

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Dear friends of the United Methodist Church in Madison,

Thank you for your continued faithful commitment to the United Methodist Church in Madison!

As we celebrate our congregation’s 150th Anniversary, we want to share the exciting ways that God has been moving in 2021 with the help of your generosity, as well as our anticipated opportunities and challenges going into 2022.

Here are just a few of the things God has done through UMC Madison this year:

  • We are reaching more families as we have seen tremendous growth from 3 students to 45 students at preschool/Daycare Acorn Academy as it reopened under the church’s ownership in the pandemic (formerly owned by Drew University).
  • We have welcomed two new international staff people: Student Assistant Pastor Woo Lim Kwak and Student Intern Domingos Francisco Fernando. These students are gaining valuable experience that will serve them in ministry for years to come in the US and beyond.
  • We have supported our neighbors through collecting coats and thousands of diapers, and we continue to support the efforts of the Interfaith Food Pantry of Morris County.
  • We have welcomed students from Drew University who are participating in the life of the church, including our new ‘Oikos’ program. ‘Oikos’ creates a welcoming space for the international student community and our congregants to share about their culture, language, and traditions of origin and provides a learning space for all to grow together.
  • We have baptized 3 little ones into our faith community and we anticipate welcoming 15 new members to the UMC Madison in spring 2022.
  • We have received over $100,000 of financial support through federal, state, and GNJ conference grants to sustain Acorn Academy through the pandemic, install a state-of-the-art security system for the church building, and begin a preschool tuition assistance program for international families at Drew University.

Even in the midst of a world-wide health crisis, God is doing great things! And all of these opportunities are possible because of your generous and faithful support through financial giving, volunteering, and prayer.

As we begin 2022, we will also be facing some challenges. Due to the pandemic, organizations that were renting building space from the church have not renewed their rental contracts. We will need to evaluate our budget and our mission going forward. In monthly meetings, the Church Council will assess our vision and mission for how to expand our impact and build missional partnerships with the church conference, our community, and Drew University in light of these new realities. The Trustees are in the process of evaluating our church properties to determine their best use. As we determine giving contributions for 2022, the Finance Committee will re-evaluate our expenses and make recommendations to the Church Council and SPRC for how to bring our expenses into greater alignment with our current financial realities and individual contributions.

In all of this, we invite you to prayerfully consider your contribution to our church in 2021 and help us close out our 150th Anniversary year strong. We would like to continue the vital work of the church in our community, even as we face present challenges.

Your donations can be given in one of three ways:

We believe that the Spirit of God is leading us into a new and exciting season of ministry here at UMC Madison. We urge you to consider being a part of it!

Noreen O’Brien, Finance Committee Chairperson

Rev. Kate Hillis, Lead Pastor


Due to the uptick in Covid cases, we will not be serving food or drink during Fellowship Hour to protect our friends and neighbors.

Offering Envelopes

If anyone would like blank offering envelopes for the year, please pick them up in the sanctuary or see Lisa in the office.


Oikos will meet next Sunday, January 30th at 4pm on Zoom.

See you there!


Acorn Academy is hiring! When we say this is a great place to start, we’re not just talking about children preparing for elementary school. It’s also about our employees. When you join our staff, you’ll discover the joy of learning, as you grow and develop in your career, alongside the children in your care. As you inspire them to achieve, you’ll be inventing your future too.

-Competitive wages

-Health Insurance offered

-Supportive, working environment

Email Kareena Salo, Director of Acorn Academy:

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New COVID-19 Developments

There has been a significant rise in COVID-19 infections in the US and in Morris County in the last two months, largely due to the impact of new variants. The CDC recommends that all people regardless of vaccination status should wear masks indoors if they are in an area of substantial or high rate of transmission. While Morris County is at about 75% vaccinated, the transmission rate is also high in the entire state of NJ including Morris County, with 73% of new cases being the Omicron variant -- many of which are breakthrough cases in vaccinated people. At UMC Madison, we are asking that ALL people regardless of vaccination status wear a mask, sanitize hands, and maintain social distance to help keep one another safe. Thank you for taking care of yourself and your neighbors. 



There are emails pretending to be from Robb Shoaf and other members of our congregation asking for Amazon Gift Cards to be sent to a friend or relative. Please do not respond to these. If you're in doubt as to whether an email is real, please pick up the phone and call that person.

Please be aware that there are emails and texts from Pastor Kate going out to our members asking for money. Do not reply to these as we have not sent anything out. You can contact Lisa in the office at 973-377-1231 or if you have any questions.

Here is a link from the Federal Trade Commission on how to recognize and avoid Phishing Scams.

How to Recognize and Avoid Phishing Scams


  • Katie King and her family
  • Melda Pike's cancer treatment
  • Roseanne Fowler Bohner
  • Pat & Jim's battle with terminal cancer
  • Pastor Kate's engagement
  • Nancy Luts & her mother
  • Dave's cousin Carol, whose husband John passed away
  • Parents trying to keep their kids safe during this time
  • The family of Inez Walling on her death
  • People who work behind the scenes; Natalie, Marlice & Lisa
  • Prayers for schools
  • All doctors, scientists and health care professionals battling Covid
  • Carolyn Currey, in rehab for broken hip
  • Leigh and all immigrants going through the green card process
  • The Young family, during their separation due to medical treatment
  • Caesar - healing & strength for dealing with Parkinsons & Covid
  • Protection and strength for the First Responders in our community
  • Prayers for Daekyung Ko
  • Dan's sister Hope, whose husband has heart failure
  • The people of Tonga

If you have a prayer request, please contact Lisa at

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Church Office Hours

Monday - Friday

9:00am - 3pm

If you have any news or announcements you would like to go into this weekly email, please contact Lisa in the church office at

 973-377-1231 or

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