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April 2, 2024 | "Transformed Lives Transform Lives"

Prayers of the People

The Rev. Emily Skorupinski, pastor of Galesville UMC in Galesville and Centenary UMC in Shady Side gave birth this past Friday to her third child, with husband Brad Skorupinski. The baby is the couple’s third child, and third daughter. The child’s name is Charlotte Marie. Mother, baby and family are doing well.

The Rev. Chris Gobrecht, an Elder in the BWC for 28 years who was serving Timonium UMC, died on Dec. 2. A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, April 13, at 11 a.m. with fellowship time afterward. The service will be at Timonium UMC, 2300 Pot Spring Road in Timonium, MD 21093. Condolences may be sento his wife, Rebeca, c/o Timonium UMC. The family requests that "those wishing to honor Chris’ memory, please consider doing good deeds to others, such as the homeless, in your community, without expecting monetary payments or recognition, thus being loving neighbors."


Diane Lynn, daughter of Joyce King, who served for many years as executive assistant to the bishop, and mother of Candice Lynn, administrative assistant at Emmanuel UMC in Beltsville, died peacefully on March 22 at Howard County Medical Center, surrounded by her husband, eight children, and close family.

Prayers continue for all those affected by the collapse of the Key Bridge in Baltimore. BWC staff and others in the conference are working with the Maryland chapter of Volunteer Organizations Active in Disasters (VOAD) to assess and meet ongoing needs.

A Good Friday worship service at Northwood-Appold UMC in Baltimore focused on the seven last words of mothers whose children were killed by police violence. The lessons of their witness echo. Read the story.

The initial disciple-based restructuring plan was recently unveiled at an online town hall meeting. As the plan is further refined this week, your prayers continue to be sought. Read a story on the restructuring and the town hall.

'Take me out to the ballgame:' UMs root for the Os May 29

Bishop LaTrelle Easterling will throw out the first pitch when the Orioles play the Boston Red Sox on May 29, as 1,000 United Methodists look on from the stands. You'll want to be a part of the action.

The game, which starts at 6:30 p.m., is part of the Annual Conference Session, which is meeting at the Hilton Hotel, next to the ballpark. Clergy and Lay Members to Annual Conference should note their intent to attend the game when they register. Tickets are free.

After registration closes on May 8, the tickets will go on sale to guests and others for $22 each. If you have already registered for the conference but didn’t reserve your ticket, contact [email protected]

New and Featured

Today is the last day to register for Necessary Ingredients, a retreat and training for youth, children, and family ministry leaders. The event will be held on April 5 and 6 at Westminster UMC. Leaders working in youth, children, and family ministries are invited to attend. Attendees will spend two days with other youth, children, and family ministry leaders to focus on the necessary ingredients for a thriving ministry. Learn from experts Chris Sasser and Chania Dillard as they teach mental health, intergenerational ministry practices, and recruiting, training, and retaining volunteers. Registration is $75. Register online.

Jones UMC in Washington will host the Sankofa Black Church Founding and Fight Against Injustice Webinar Series, conducted by the Rev. C. Anthony Hunt, on April 3 and April 17 from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Registration is required for the Zoom webinar.

Legacy Giving: If your church does not currently have an endowment, you may be missing out on a vital component of the long-term sustainability of your ministry. Local experts indicate that 60 percent of United Methodist churches in our area haven't received a legacy gift in the last five years. The Mid-Atlantic United Methodist Foundation is hosting a presentation on funding your church through legacy giving on Thursday, April 4, from 5 to 7 p.m. at Trinity UMC in Frederick.

The Non-Anxious Leader: Family Systems Basics is a free, four-week online course, from April 8 to May 5, that teaches you how to lead as a non-anxious presence, personally and professionally. Learning is self-guided and asynchronous, so you can cover the material when it works best for you. Learn more and register.

Deaf Prayer Vigil: The Revs. Lisa Holder of Christ Church of the Deaf and Leo Yates of Magothy Deaf Church are hosting a Deaf Prayer Vigil in preparation for General Conference. The Deaf Prayer Vigil is on April 13 at 1 p.m. They will share some highlights of General Conference at the beginning and then we will proceed with the Scripture readings and prayers. Register.

Affiliation Dinner in Charlotte: General Conference begins in a few weeks in Charlotte, NC and will be available to view via livestream. Bishop LaTrelle Easterling invites members of the Pen-Del and BWC who will be traveling to Charlotte as participants, observers, or in a service capacity to an affiliation dinner on Monday, April 29, at 6:30 p.m. Please contact the episcopal office to register: [email protected].

Call for Guest Preachers: Barratt’s Chapel UMC in Frederica, Del., is inviting local churches to collaborate with them by designing and leading worship at the historic Barratt’s Chapel this summer. The open dates are June 27, July 11, and July 25. For more details and information or to sign up, contact Rev. Sally Stewart at 302-245-4259.

Delicious Camp Fundraiser: West River Center and Chef David Jannsen will host their second Grazing on Maryland fundraiser dinner on April 28 from 4 to 7 p.m. at the camping and retreat center at 5100 Chalk Point Road in West River. Join them for a casual evening raising funds for scholarships for the summer camp. Learn more about the farmers, watermen and artisans whose food will be featured. Buy tickets.

The Seeds of Security Annual Golf Tournament, which raises funds to assist domestic violence victims, will be held on Monday, May 13, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Hobbit’s Glen Golf Course in Columbia, Md. One option for those who want to support this important ministry of healing is to sponsor a hole during the tournament for $250. Individuals, groups, and churches can sponsor a hole and display a signature banner at the hole. Learn more.

Registration is now open for the 240th session of the BWC Annual Conference, which will be held Wednesday, May 29, through Friday, May 31, at the Hilton Hotel in Baltimore.

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

Additional Disicpleship Opportunities

Clergy health care: Wespath, The United Methodist Church’s pension and benefits agency, has scheduled a virtual event for noon on April 10 to help United Methodists learn more about the proposed Compass Retirement Plan for clergy. Legislation to establish the plan is heading to General Conference, which is scheduled for April 23 - May 3 in Charlotte, N.C., during the online session. Register.

Youth Mental Health & First Aid: The United Methodist Board of Childcare will offer free Youth Mental Health First Aid training at Eastport UMC in Annapolis. Young people today face unique challenges that can impact their mental well-being. By equipping ourselves with the knowledge and skills to identify and respond to these challenges, we can create a more supportive and understanding community for our youth. This eight-hour course will be held April 14 and 21 from 2 to 6 p.m. RSVP by March 31 by completing this registration form.

Clergy Ethics: Caring for Self & Others through Healthy Boundaries, presented by Rev. Lindsay Geist, LCSW, will be held on May 16 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Grace UMC in Baltimore. There will be two components of this training: an online learning platform portion and an in-person portion. The May 16 event will include lunch. Successful completion will earn 1.0 CEUs. The deadline to register is Friday, April 5, by noonLearn more and register.

The BWC’s Young People’s Ministry will hold a Mental Health Symposium on May 18 from 3:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the BWC Mission Center in Fulton. The symposium, with speaker Lauren Jenkins, will provide youth and young adults, ages 13 - 35, with a space to raise awareness about mental health and suicide, have meaningful discussions on the power of resilience and faith, and, through creative expressive activities, explore the importance of hope and connection. All attendees will gain tools and resources to support and invest in their mental health. The symposium will be facilitated by licensed and certified mental health professionals. Register.

Applications are now open for the 2024 Peace with Justice Grants. Applicants must show their commitment to Social Justice Advocacy, including advocacy for voting rights, immigration reform, gun violence prevention legislation reforms, human trafficking, and other justice-related concerns. Learn more and apply.

Lessons in 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. This week, he explores the "four steps to building more effective teams."

See church classified ads now online.

Melissa Lauber, Director of Communications
11711 East Market Place, Fulton, MD 20759
 410.309.3455  |  [email protected]
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