Having trouble viewing this email? Click here

Jan. 16, 2024 | "Transformed Lives Transform Lives"

Prayers of the People

We celebrate the Rev. Amy McCullough, lead pastor of Grace UMC in Baltimore and chair of the BWC's Board of Ordained Ministry, who was endorsed as a candidate for bishop by the conference's delegation to General and Jurisdictional Conferences on Jan. 13. The endorsement will be brought to the members of the Baltimore-Washington Conference when they meet May 29 - 31. Read the story.

We welcome the BWC’s two new part-time Young People’s Ministry Organizers who will work with district and church leaders to rebuild our grassroots network of youth ministry. The new organizers are the Rev. Chania Dillard, who was ordained in the AME Church and currently serves as a youth pastor for Journey and Gethsemene UMC, and Meghan Humbert, who was born and raised in the BWC and has worked for 23 years in education, currently as an assistant principal in Carroll County.

We also celebrate Charles Carrington, who joins the BWC as the district administrator for the Baltimore Suburban District.

Cooperative Parishes awaken spirit of adventure and mission

Cooperative Parishes allow people to live out the best of connectionalism; they open the laity to a spirit of adventure and draw people into new understandings of and engagement with their community. Churches considering joining in creative ways with other faith communities to do vital ministry are invited to join a Cooperative Parish Summit on Jan. 27 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the BWC Mission Center in Fulton. The pastor, lay leader and SPRC chair (or their designee) of interested churches are encouraged to attend. A World Café featuring rapid conversations with five current Cooperative Parish leaders from the BWC will be held in the morning, and a strategy session will be held in the afternoon.

Read a story on cooperative parishes. Register before Jan. 19. Learn more about the summit and register.

Pray at 12:01 Wednesdays and attend a Listening Session on restructuring

The complete results of the restructuring survey have been compiled and are now available. See the survey results.

As the Restructuring Task Force continues its work within the Baltimore-Washington Conference, you are invited to attend one of the Listening Sessions that will be held over the next several weeks. The first sessions will be held this Thursday, Jan. 18, from 1 to 3 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m. at the Mission Center in Fulton.

The listening sessions are intended to be solution-oriented and future-focused. Our goal is to enhance our collective mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. The task force encourages deep listening and fruitful conversation rather than a critical or divisive evaluation of our past.

Please read the updated and expanded version of the Restructuring Survey results and other materials to get a sense of the wide range of responses. After the listening sessions have been completed, the task force will bring potential options or scenarios for restructuring to the Connectional Table and the Annual Conference for consideration.

By attending one of six at-large sessions, you will have the opportunity to help discern how the Conference positions itself for greater vitality and effectiveness. Your input, ideas and creativity are important to this work. Please make every effort to attend a session. If you need ASL interpretation, please contact the Rev. Leo Yates.

Learn more, see the Listening Sessions schedule and join in a call to prayer.

New and Featured

Annual BWC Scholarship application process is open: Once again, the BWC will award scholarships to qualified college students and high school seniors who plan to attend college in the fall of 2024. The process closes on March 13. Learn more and apply.

The Rev. Kimberly Wagner will lead a Preaching in the Wake of Trauma workshop on Jan. 24 from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at Trinity UMC in Frederick. The session will consider the impact of communal trauma and leaning on the wisdom of our biblical ancestors in faith. It will also consider what it might mean to proclaim God’s word when communities feel unmoored and uncertain about the future. Pastors will earn 0.4 CEUs. Registration closes Jan. 18. Register.

The BWC’s Restorative Justice Team is holding a workshop on Healing Communities: Congregational Readiness to Receive Returning Citizens Training on Feb. 10 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Brooklyn Community UMC in Brooklyn Park. The $50 fee includes 1 CEU credit, training materials, breakfast and lunch. The registration deadline is Jan. 31. Register.

Living Well Clergy Renewal Retreats: The Living Well Clergy Renewal Initiative is a seven-month program comprised of an opening retreat, monthly cohort meetings and a closing retreat. The retreats will be at West River Center near Annapolis on April 9 - 11 and Oct. 29 - 31. Registration closes on March 22. Successful completion of the Living Well program qualifies for 3.3 CEUs. Learn more and register now.

Ministry Opportunities Calendar

Scout Sunday

Feb. 4

Buy a patch for $3.50

Annual Conference Resolutions Due

Feb. 16

Legislative Advocacy Day for Maryland

Feb. 21, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Asbury UMC in Annapolis

General Conference

April 23 - May 3

Convention Center Charlotte, N.C.

Next Level Speaker Series

March 7, 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Westphalia UMC, Upper Marlboro

Dr. Deborah Haskins joins Bishop LaTrelle Easterling to discuss the ground-breaking field of trauma-informed leadership and holistic wellness.

BWC Annual Conference Session

Wednesday-Friday, May 29 - 31

Hilton Hotel, Baltimore

The theme of the session is "Like Fire Shut Up in Our Bones."

A Pre-Conference Briefing will be held online on Saturday, May 11.

Additional Disicpleship Opportunities

The Black Clergymen Fellowship will gather on Thursday, Jan. 18, at 7 p.m. on ZOOM. All active and retired clergy brothers are invited to join us. The Meeting ID is 859 9047 9204, and the passcode is 104947. If you would like more information, please get in touch with the Revs. Jason Jordan-Griffin or Michael Parker.

So You Want to Repurpose Church Property? Repurposing church property effectively is more than just a real estate transaction to make more money. There are several elements required to see a successful effort come to pass. Join the Rev. Joe Daniels and leaders from Emory UMC in Washington, D.C., as they share their story of going from a part-time appointment and a congregation that was presumed dead to a revitalized congregation that facilitated the construction of a $60 million multi-use building project with 99 units of affordable housing. Register for the Jan 20 event from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Emory UMC.

Looking for a mission opportunity for your youth? Consider CAMP JOY 2024. An information session about the camp will be held Jan. 24 and Jan. 29 at 7 p.m. via ZOOM. For more than 30 years, youth groups from the Baltimore-Washington and Pen-Del Conferences have served the Appalachian region by providing home repairs. When they’re not working, the youth tent camp at Camp Harmison in Berkley Springs, W.Va. The camp is scheduled for July 7 - 13 and 14 - 20. For more information, visit the Hancock UMC website or contact Pastor Becki Wessinger at 301-678-6440. Join the meeting at

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/7749106935?omn=86576751993; Meeting ID: 774 910 6935.

St. Matthew UMC in Turner Station will host a special Valentine's Day worship service, Falling in Love with Jesus, on Feb. 11 at 3 p.m. with special guest preacher Rev. Marcus G. Jones, pastor of Fountain Baptist Church.

Lessons on Leadership

Level Up is a video series that provides lessons in church leadership using best-selling secular writings by the Rev. Jack Shitama of the Center for Vital Leadership. Shitama has written and videotaped 29 clever and insightful summaries of some of today's best writing on leadership. This week, he explores "The Myth of Self Discipline."

See church classified ads now online.

Melissa Lauber, Director of Communications
11711 East Market Place, Fulton, MD 20759
 410.309.3455  |  mlauber@bwcumc.org
Facebook  Twitter  Instagram  Youtube