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Finance and Administration: Information and Resources for Local Churches

4/2/2020
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,   We write you today sending love and power in the name of Jesus Christ.    In the roles we play within our California Nevada Conference community, we have had the opportunity to witness your great strength and creativity as we navigate the waters of these days.   We have seen remarkable creativity and adaptive skills emerge to keep our communities together in worship and praise.  We have seen phone trees and networks and video small groups spring up like new...

GCFA Board Acts Regarding the 2021 General Church Apportionments and Department of Labor Guidelines

3/27/2020
Nashville, TN – The Board of Directors of the General Council on Finance and Administration (GCFA) met by Conference Call on March 27 to discuss general Church apportionments for 2021. It is the Disciplinary responsibility of GCFA to present a quadrennial budget for the General Conference to approve. Specifically, the total budget is set by the General Conference establishing formula used to calculate general Church apportionments. The General Conference also establishes how the total budget ...

Message from Micheal Pope, Conference Lay Leader

3/27/2020
California-Nevada Lay Leader Micheal Pope delivers a heartfelt message as we navigate this time of coronavirus - COVID-19 together. 

The United Methodist Publishing House Grants Temporary Permission for UM Book of Worship Content

3/27/2020
Nashville, March, 2020 – The outbreak of COVID-19 in the US and the resulting cancellation of group gatherings has led many United Methodist churches to plan online virtual worship experiences.   To assure that local churches have the resources they need, the United Methodist Publishing House (UMPH) announced that it is granting permission to use and post online selected contents from the United Methodist Book of Worship (BOW) as congregations care for their members during the international ...

‘Take Out Church’ Delivered to Local Church Members

3/26/2020
By JB Brayfindley The brown paper bags have a square label emblazoned with the words, “Take Out Church” and sit in rows on a table awaiting delivery for this Saturday, March 29, 2020. Rose Steelman, office assistant at United Methodist Church of the Joyful Healer (UMCJH) is working on how the bags will be delivered to the 52 people on her list.   “We are organizing it by towns,” said Steelman. The church is situated in McKinleyville but has members from outlying towns including Trinidad, ...

Easter and the Coronavirus - COVID-19

3/26/2020
March 27, 2020   Friends, Recently President Donald Trump shared his thoughts about wanting to have churches return to their sanctuaries on Easter Sunday.  I agreed with him that it “would be a wonderful thing.”  As a person of Christian faith, I would give witness to a Risen Lord who can heal us and even bring us back from death.  I also believe that God has blessed us with wisdom to discern the times, and Jesus our Lord has placed within our hearts a conviction to be caring of one another ...

Be Help. Receive Help: Share your stories and prayers

3/26/2020
As faith communities continue to shelter-in-place we are developing new routines, developing new ways to worship and perhaps even new ways of praying.  The California-Nevada conference staff have added 2 new features to the coronavirus web page: a bulletin board and a prayer wall.  As we care for our neighbors by staying inside please join our online community by visiting the new bulletin board on the California-Nevada website. There you can read posts from friends across the conference and ...

BMCR focuses on separation plans, leadership views

3/26/2020
By John Coleman, UMNews Much of the annual meeting of the African American caucus of The United Methodist Church focused on major changes being proposed to the now-delayed General Conference, as well as the views of black church leaders.   During its 53rd annual meeting, Black Methodists for Church Renewal endorsed the Protocol of Reconciliation & Grace Through Separation, a plan for amicable separation of the church.   A panel of episcopal leaders known as the Ebony Bishops discussed the ...

Digital Sunday Update: Local churches adapt and find new audiences

3/26/2020
As churches around the California-Nevada connection prepare to navigate their third Sunday out of the sanctuary, pastors and laity are skilling up and having learning and successes around online worship.  Here are some reports from churches across the conference. Please let us know how your church is developing best practices in this time of coronavirus - COVID-19.  You can post your ideas, questions and concerns as well as respond to those of folks around the conference at our bulletin board. ...

GCORR Denounces Trump’s Racist and Xenophobic ‘Chinese Virus’ Language

3/26/2020
March 22, 2020 GCORR denounces the U.S. President’s racist language to describe the Coronavirus as “The Chinese Virus.” Not only does this unapologetic use of xenophobia and racial terror create physical, emotional, and economic harm to persons of Asian descent, it amplifies President Trump’s individual racism with the institutional power of the United States government. When a leader of the world makes individual racist statements, they provide an evil courage and politicized cover for ...

Kubing: Staying close in a time of social distancing

3/26/2020
Some of you may wonder what is the musical instrument that I used in this video. It is called, "KUBING." It is a type of Philippine jaw harp from bamboo found among the indigenous people in Mindanao and other Muslim and non-Muslim tribes in the Philippines and Indonesia.    This very small musical instrument is traditionally considered an intimate instrument, usually used as communication between family or a loved one in close quarters.  I played the Kubing for you as I am connected with you. ...

Need a Virtual Meeting Platform? Here's our suggestions.

3/26/2020
Google Meet Google Fans. Meet Meet, Google's latest but not-so-new flagship offering for audio and video conferencing.  Those of you familiar with Google's peer-to-peer video platform, Hangouts, will certainly appreciate the interface upgrade as Meet seeks to find its place among business-oriented conferencing platforms. To experience Meet at its highest potential, a user would need to subscribe to one of Google's G Suite plans. A basic account starts at $6 per month per user and allows for up ...

Stories from CUIR: Words of Hope In This Time

3/26/2020
By Akiko Miyake-Stoner, Pastor, Clovis United Japanese Christian UMC This week was supposed to be the National Workshop on Christian Unity, but like most other major events, was cancelled due to COVID-19.  Instead, UMEIT (United Methodist Ecumenical and Interreligious Training) hosted a Zoom videoconference; United Methodists from around the country gathered to learn and catch up with what's going on ecumenically.  The meeting began with the sharing of these beautiful words by Fr. Hendrick.  ...

Western Jurisdiction College of Bishops: Communion in a time of social distancing

3/26/2020
The following is a letter to local church pastors from the Bishops of the Western Jurisdiction released on Tuesday March 24th, 2020   Beloved Servants of Christ,   We write, as your episcopal leaders, in these unprecedented days of social change due to the COVID-19 crisis. We are grateful for the many ways you have responded, learning new skills and experimenting as you seek to respond to the pastoral needs of your people.   We have received many questions about online communion: Is this ...

Western Jurisdiction Communicators Pool Ideas and Resources

3/26/2020
Conference communication directors in the Western Jurisdiction are know for their close knit collaboration. As we navigate  adaptations in the time of coronavirus - COVID-19, communicators are working together to support local churches across the jurisdiction connect with their faith communities.  One of the most recent offerings is a new Facebook group: Taking Worship Online/ Virtual etc.  If you would like to join this group please email me and I will send you an invitation.  To share your ...

Pray Today at Noon

3/25/2020
( click on the video to hear Bishop Carcaño's message)   Bishop Minerva Carcaño joins the United Methodist Church and the Council of Bishops in asking all United Methodists to join people of faith in a day of prayer this afternoon, March 25, asking God to rid the world of the coronavirus pandemic. Read the COB press release here.

Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño Allies with Detained Immigrants at Risk of COVID-19 Exposure

3/20/2020
Episcopal leader of the California-Nevada Conference and Chairperson of the United Methodist Immigration Task Force, Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño, joined leaders as a signatory to a letter sponsored by the ACLU of California, the San Fransisco Marin Medical Society and the Immigrants Defense Advocates calling for immigrant rights as exposure to the coronavirus threatens those living in detention centers across California. Read the letter

Local Churches Continue to Minister in Deeds and Prayers During COVID-19

3/20/2020
By JB Brayfindley   Around the California-Nevada Annual conference, churches are finding ways to meet needs of their congregations and communities.   “In all of this craziness, may love be shown, may Christ be known, and may God be praised!” said Rev. Dawn Blundell, pastor of Epworth United Methodist Church in Fallon, Nevada. On Sunday, Blundell asked members to commit to doing 5 acts of kindness a day, the third of five essential practices in the Christian life that she has been preaching on ...

Governor Newsom: Californians Stay Home

3/20/2020
On Thursday March 19 Governor Gavin Newsom has ordered Californians to stay home in an effort to slow the spread of coronavirus.  Although this order has not yet come for our family in Nevada, we urge all across the California-Nevada connection to take the utmost protections recommended by your state and county public health departments. Click here to read more about Governor Newsom's shelter in place order. To locate your county public health department by district and up to the moment ...

Work Continues as Conference Building Closes

3/18/2020
Greetings California-Nevada Conference Family, Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño decided that, in accord and compliance with directives from California state and county government officials and public health offices in our region, and in consultation with leaders across the connection, that the conference office building will be closed until further notice. The work of the conference will continue as staff ‘shelter in place’ and telework from home. Staff continue to have access to their email and ...

Coronavirus Update: Message from Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño

3/18/2020
Greetings Friends, As instruction to ‘shelter in place’ continues to come from counties across California and Nevada, Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño shares a special video message with our faith families across the connection requesting that church buildings be closed. View video in Spanish  |  View video in English Please share back with us the many ways in which you are continuing to worship in new ways and to serve your communities during this time in which we are needing to distance ourselves ...

Coronavirus Live Webinar on Online Worship

3/17/2020
The Directors of Communications of the Conferences in the Western Jurisdiction work closely together.  My colleague in the Desert Southwest Conference, Christina Dillabough, has organized what seems to be a wonderful webinar for this coming Wednesday, March 18, 2020 at 10:00AM MST / 9:00AM PST with the following topics: CCLI vs. Live Stream license what and how Zooming for free How to stream from Zoom to FB Live A short discussion on pre-record vs. live stream Sound tips Equipment and software ...

Be Prepared: Nevada Resources Residents to Slow Coronavirus

3/14/2020
Preparedness and prevention are important buzzwords in this time of coronavirus and Nevada's Governor Sisolak continues to take a series of pro-active moves to help the state's residents stay safe. On Thursday March 12th the governor declared a state of emergency for the state of Nevada, allowing access to the tools and flexibility needed to help address, contain and mitigate the effects of the virus. He activated the State of Emergency Operations Center, created the Nevada Health Response Team...

Join Los Altos UMC this Sunday for a Special Online Worship Experience

3/14/2020
  Los Altos UMC has created a special worship experience for this Sunday, March 15 in an effort to help people across the California-Nevada faith family connect with each other and with God. The in-person gathering restrictions imposed to stem the spread of coronavirus often leave us feeling isolated. Most especially in this time, it is important to find new ways  to be in community. We thank Los Altos UMC and all of the church families across California-Nevada for being the church in new and ...

California-Nevada Conference Guidelines for Local Churches

3/13/2020
The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has recommended that all gatherings across the state of over 250 people be postponed or canceled and is requiring the following conditions for meetings with below 250. Nevertheless, as the situation of the pandemic varies by county, some counties in California have ordered the cancelation all gatherings over 100 people and are also banning all gatherings of 35-100 people unless the following conditions can be met (please check your county public ...

Guideline on Camping Ministry in response to Coronavirus

3/13/2020
The news regarding the pandemic Coronavirus has brought much uncertainty and fear into our lives, making it hard to think about future plans, including summer camp plans. We recognize that many of our members and communities are struggling while waiting for the situation to improve. We want to reassure you that our California-Nevada Annual Conference camps in different campsites such as Monte Toyon, Camp Lodestar, Lake Tahoe UMC & Retreat Center and Waller Center and continue tofollow the ...

Advocate for Unsheltered People: Always and Now

3/13/2020
By Pastor Lindsey Bell-Kerr   Our public health officials continue to tell us that the best way to safeguard against COVID-19 is to wash your hands and practice social distancing. For those experiencing homelessness, however, both of these practices can be difficult, if not impossible. Those who sleep outside or who only have access to night shelters have limited access to the facilities required to practice basic sanitation. In addition to having limited access to toilets, this population also ...

Road Scholar Civil Rights Tour

3/13/2020
By Heather Leslie Hammer Experience the Civil Rights Movement with other United Methodists on a Road Scholar (formerly Elderhostel) tour November 1-8, 2020. Sponsored by the Retired Clergy Association (RCA), a group of approximately 30 will meet in Atlanta, travel by coach to Montgomery, Selma, and Birmingham, returning to Atlanta. We will stay in 3 hotels at the rate of $1999 (double occupancy) or $2599 (single occupancy) for the 8 days, 17 meals, lectures, and admissions included. ...

‘Liberation Methodist Church’ idea gets hearing

3/13/2020
by Sam Hodges, UMNews Some came wanting a new denomination. Others said they prefer, for now, to keep working within The United Methodist Church. But all who attended the UM-Forward event held here March 6-8 expressed commitment to Gospel-based activism on various fronts, namely LGBTQ inclusion, but also reparations, workers’ rights and climate change. “A rainbow flag in front of a building is not enough,” said the Rev. Alex da Silva Souto, one of the event’s organizers. Such talk resonated ...

8 bishops join in planning new denomination

3/13/2020
By Sam Hodges and Heather Hahn, UMNews A group of United Methodist leaders, including eight bishops, has issued a statement sharing its vision for a global traditionalist denomination focused on evangelism and the “primacy of Scripture.” Among the group’s essential doctrinal beliefs is defining Christian marriage as between a man and a woman. Two of the bishops who signed the statement told UM News they would depart The United Methodist Church for such a new denomination. One other said he is ...

Adjusting to Coronavirus Threat

3/13/2020
by Linda Bloom, UMNS The Rev. Kelly Dahlman-Oeth gained a new appreciation March 8 for the option of livestreaming Sunday worship after needing to be separate from his congregation in Shoreline, Washington. “I’m just delighted by the technology that allows us to try to stay connected as much as we can,” he said, before admitting his previous lack of enthusiasm for a “virtual” church experience. “Welcome to this not so brave, somewhat cautious new world.” Dahlman-Oeth, the pastor of Ronald United...

Electronic giving allows ministry to continue in ‘isolating’ times

3/13/2020
Giving to your local church means giving to your local communities. Passing the offering plate in church on Sunday mornings is a physical and symbolic reminder of Jesus’ commitment to ministering to all those around us. When church attendance is slowed or completely stopped, though, to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus, offering online giving is a way to continue to feel connected to your local church and its many ministries. There are several easy steps churches can implement right now to ...

Flatten the Curve: Slowing the Spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19)

3/13/2020
On Tuesday March 11 the National Center for Disease Control (CDC) released a series of 4 simple one page documents to help people in communities across the country help slow the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19). We encourage you share these with your family, neighbors and faith communities as we all work together to stem the spread of the virus. 

Local UMCs Are Keeping Church Together When Virus Concern Aims to Keep Them Apart

3/13/2020
 By JB Brayfindley   “Our faith was already designed to work with small groups,” said Rev. George Edd-Bennett pastor at First United Methodist Church of Lodi referring to the historical method of developing Christian disciples through ‘class meetings’ of 12- 15 people, an adaption of which his church is using to address the concerns over COVID-19.   “Our faith should be the part of our life we rely on most in a time of crisis,” noted Edd-Bennett who is concerned about his members being isolated ...

MARCHA STATEMENT ON PROPOSALS TO THE GENERAL CONFERENCE 2020 OF THE UNITED METHODIST CHURCH

3/13/2020
MARCHA LAMENTS, the irreconcilable positions that have divided our church to the point of schism. Nevertheless, MARCHA welcomes the Protocol of Grace and Reconciliation through Separation as an opportunity for the UMC to move beyond disagreements on the issue of inclusion of LGBTQ+ persons, and as a necessary step to end the harm caused to those individuals in our church’s history. As in previous separations such as the autonomy of central conferences of Latin America, it is an opportunity for ...

Napa UMW Sewing to Improve Lives of Women

3/13/2020
Napa UMW members and other volunteers met Sat, Mar. 7 at Napa United Methodist Church to cut fabric patterns and sew washable menstrual pads for girls and women of all ages who might not otherwise be able to access or afford adequate sanitary supplies. This is the third time Napa UMW members and volunteers have produced these reusable pads for distribution by the international non-profit, Days for Girls. The organization reports that, “girls and women resort to using rags, mattress stuffing, ...

New “Messy Church” Service Is Fun for Youth and Adults at Rancho Cordova UMC

3/13/2020
By JB Brayfindley 55 people attended “Messy Church,” at Rancho Cordova United Methodist Church (RCUMC) on Friday, March 6th from 4:40 to 7:00 p.m. The new service was formulated from a unit in the book “Messy Church” by Lucy Moor and Jane Leadbetter. “Our Sunday School program was struggling and we decided we needed to really think outside of the box and do something really different--both to make it sustainable for teachers, but also to make it really life giving for our children… and this is ...

REGIONALIZATION AND PROTOCOL FIRST: Request from Inter-Ethnic Coalition to General Conference

3/13/2020
IESDG (Inter-Ethnic Strategy and Development Group) requests and urges the Commission on General Conference that the legislation on regionalization coming from Central Conferences, be the first matter to be deliberated in General Conference 2020, followed by the Protocol of Reconciliation and Grace Through Separation.   All the plans and legislations offered for considerations to our General Conference this year are intricate and complex.  As such, it mandates an incremental and intentional ...

Stopping Coronavirus: Monitor Your County Public Health Department & California-Nevada Conference Websites

3/13/2020
News around the coronavirus (COVID-19) changes daily and it is important to know what is happening in your own community to help stop the spread of the virus.  California-Nevada Conference office has created a listing of county public health departments by District so that you, your family and your faith community can stay connected with the latest updates in your area. County public health departments are important go-to sources for virus information and prevention in your towns, neighborhoods ...

Presentation and discussion on the Protocol of Reconciliation and Grace Through Separation

3/9/2020
All area churches are invited to a forum and Q &A on the Protocol of Reconciliation and Grace Through Separation. It'll be Sunday, March 22 at 3 PM at Walnut Creek United Methodist Church, 1543 Sunnyvale Ave, Walnut Creek (just off the Treat Blvd. exit on I-680). Our speaker is Randall Miller, a member of the group that negotiated and drafted the protocol, and an alternate delegate to General Conference in May. Please call 925-206-4876 to RSVP.

Continuing Care for Our Conference Family

3/7/2020
Out of an abundance of caution, Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño and the California-Nevada Conference Human Resources Team have decided that the Conference Center will remain closed through Wednesday March 11.  Conference staff will continue to work remotely, and Conference meetings held by zoom. Leadership is in daily communication with local health authorities as they continue to care for the health and well-being of conference staff, conference leaders and visitors. Continue to check the conference ...

5,000 Could Attend Earth Day Event Established by Redding UMC

3/6/2020
by JB Brayfindley   Saturday, April 18th, 2020 from 11 am to 5 pm is the 14th year of Redding’s Whole Earth and Watershed Festival, an annual community-wide celebration of Earth Day featuring activities, exhibits, live music, films, artists, and local food. More than 5,000 people are expected to attend the event which boasts 160 exhibits by businesses, non-profits, government agencies, community groups, local artists, and educational organizations. The event will be held at Redding City Hall and...

Census 2020: Why Everyone Should be Counted

3/6/2020
by Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño As Christians we believe that all people should be valued, accounted for and cared for.  In the US one of the fundamental ways to do this is our Census.  Conducted at the end of every decade, makes 2020 a Census year.  All people living in the US need to be counted. However, widespread fear and mistrust was sown in immigrant communities across the US  when the US Department of Justice requested the inclusion of a citizenship question on the 2020 Census. Immigrants,...

Engaging Community: Sacramento Riverside UMC Designs Green Space Hub

3/6/2020
Sacramento Riverside United Methodist Church, (RUMC), needed a new playground for the growing number of families with children joining their faith community. RUMC is located in metro Sacramento and continues to serve the primarily Asian immigrant community. Church leaders began imagining beyond a playground and decided to design a multi-use outdoor community gathering space, a hub, for the church, the surrounding community and for partners who currently use RUMC facilities for meetings and ...

Faith in Action: Puerto Rico Mission 2020

3/6/2020
by The California-Nevada Conference Puerto Rico Mission Team   Our third year assisting with the recovery from Hurricane Maria brought our mission team to a better healed Puerto Rico.  We were pleased to see recovery progress, but with years still to go.  Now chronicled as one of the worst hurricanes in history, the 2017 storm had left the island devastated. This year’s mission was a return to the South Coast.  Stationed at a former Methodist Retreat Center, we served clients in the nearby ...

Holy Week Pilgramage to Focus on Immigrant Detention Centers

3/6/2020
by Michael Yoshii The California-Nevada Conference Committee on Advocacy & Justice is co-sponsoring a Holy Week Pilgrimage for Liberation to focus on Immigrant Detention Centers in California, and the role of for-profit corporations that run these centers. The pilgrimage will travel from the Bay Area, through the Central Valley to the Inland Empire, holding rituals and interfaith prayer vigils at places of detention and incarceration. As we enter into the season of Lent and remember the ...

Support the Dream and Promise Act of 2019 for Immigrant Dreamers, TPS Holders, and DED Recipients in the United States!

3/6/2020
from The General Board of Church and Society   H.R.6, The Dream and Promise Act of 2019, is legislation that protects certain immigrants, providing them with the ability to remain in the U.S. and access a pathway to citizenship. Dreamers are immigrant young people brought to the U.S. as children. Many are now young adults. Temporary Protected Status (TPS) holders and Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) recipients are migrants who have lived legally in the U.S. for decades due to armed conflict, ...

UMCOR Connecting Neighbors: Plan. Prepare. Prevent.

3/6/2020
Life is complicated and full of the unknown. When we walk out the door each morning we trust that it will be just another day and sometimes it is.  Sometimes it isn't.  When life happens, not having a plan, not being prepared and not having preventative measures in place can turn our world upside down.  Connecting Neighbors can help us come together and work through the storms of life.   Connecting Neighbors is a resource developed by United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) and presented...

UMCOR Impact: Local Churches Connect in Mission

3/6/2020
If you have ever wondered about the power and impact of local church communities connected in mission, keep reading.... In the summer of 2019 Linda Gates, member of Federated Church in Placerville, CA, challenged church communities in the Great Northern District to participate in an UMCOR Hygiene Kit Drive with the goal of actually driving to the UMCOR depot in Salt Lake City, Utah and delivering the kits in person. Kit assembly at Federated UMC was led by the children’s ministry and the kits ...

UMCOR Sunday

3/6/2020
by Thomas Kemper, General Secretary of The General Board of Global Ministries “For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me.” — Matthew 25:35, NRSV United Methodists will celebrate UMCOR Sunday on March 22, 2020. Eighty years ago, World War II was raging. Millions of people, displaced from their homes, sought refuge and hope. The church responded by creating the Methodist Committee on Overseas Relief (MCOR) and ...

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