UM Clergy Head to Standing Rock for Protest


By Sam Hodges Nov. 2, 2016 | UMNS The Rev. Richenda Fairhurst had a wedding earlier this week and needs to be back in her pulpit on Sunday. But the United Methodist pastor decided to take two flights and an hour-long car ride to get from Washington State to North Dakota, so she can briefly join the Standing Rock Sioux tribe’s protest of the Dakota Access Pipeline. Fairhurst and hundreds of other clergy from a range of faith traditions will gather Nov. 3 for a “Stand with Standing Rock” event, ...

Council of Bishops to call for 2019 General Conference


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE November 2, 2016 Council of Bishops to call for 2019 General Conference Sets forth actions to involve the whole church in prayer and conversation St. Simons Island, Ga.: Through an affirmative vote at their fall  meeting this week, the United Methodist Council of Bishops expressed their intent to call for a special session of the General Conference in either February or March of 2019 and asked the business manager of  the General Conference to move forward with exploring ...

Bishop Responds to Judicial Council Ruling


“So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are citizens with the saints and also members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the cornerstone.” -Ephesians 2:19, NRSV   The Judicial Council recently issued a ruling on the bishop’s Decision of Law in the New York Annual Conference concerning whether or not the Conference Board of Ordained Ministry is required to ascertain whether a candidate meets the ...

Court to bishops: Rule on ‘proper’ questions of law


By Linda Bloom Oct. 30, 2016 | LISLE, Ill. (UMNS) Bishops must answer all questions of law that are properly before them, The United Methodist Church’s top court said in two cases stemming from the ordination of gay clergy. That opinion was part of two decisions from the fall meeting of the Judicial Council, which met  Oct. 25-28 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Lisle, Illinois. Two cases, from the New York and Northern Illinois annual conferences, centered on a bishop’s decision of law regarding ...

Ruling on Bishop's Decision of Law Concerning LGBTQI Candidates


The Judicial Council has affirmed in part and reversed in part Bishop Jane Allen Middleton's decision of law concerning questions over ministry candidacy requirements raised at the 2016 New York Annual Conference.

Hurricane Matthew Response


Dear Friends & Colleagues, Just a short three weeks ago Hurricane Matthew began a path of destruction and chaos through Haiti and the southeastern coast of the United States. In the wake of the storm over 800 lives were lost and countless others were left without home or shelter. Less than two weeks ago, the aftermath of the storm created historic flooding in North Carolina leaving some towns completely under water. Last week I had the privilege of being with Bishop Jonathan ...

Hurricane Matthew: Report #2 from Eglise Méthodiste d’Haiti


To donate online: UMC International Disaster Response Advance #982450 Or, The Methodist Church World Mission Fund   The last week has been very busy with 16-hour working days and hence, we have not had a chance to send out an update on the aftermath of the hurricane until now. The EMH Bishop Gesner Paul was able to make an initial visit to Cayes and Jeremie over the weekend 9th-10th October to take food and other supplies and to assess the extent of need in the communities. The results ...

Tri-District Retreat Presentations Available Online


The presentations from both Bishop Thomas Bickerton and Rev. David A. Gilmore are now available.

Hurricane Matthew in Haiti – the Church Responds


In the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Matthew, Brulan Jean-Michel, the manager of the Methodist Guest House in Petionville, Haiti, summarized what many were thinking when he wrote: “I want to thank each and everyone for their thoughts and prayers as hurricane Matthew passed over Haiti. It has been, and still is, a very difficult situation to deal with due to the fact that we have not yet completely recovered from the devastation caused by the earthquake of 2010. I sometimes find myself asking,...

New overtime rule means church changes


Read Ross William's email on this topic By Heather Hahn Oct. 5, 2016 | UMNS A new federal rule that increases the number of U.S. workers who are eligible for overtime pay could have an impact on your church’s payroll. Most church employees who are not clergy are among those affected by the new regulation — currently set to take effect Dec. 1. Under the new U.S. Department of Labor rule, most workers earning up to $47,476 annually ($913 per week) will qualify for overtime pay. That roughly ...

Way Forward Commission makeup challenged


Photo by Mike DuBose, UMNS Bishop Bruce R. Ough gives the message during closing worship at the 2016 United Methodist General Conference in Portland, Ore. Delegates had earlier voted that the bishops should appoint a commission to look at church teachings on homosexuality. By Kathy L. Gilbert and Sam Hodges Oct. 6, 2016 | UMNS Some United Methodist laity are calling for equal representation to a special commission that will look at the church’s teachings on homosexuality and issues of ...

Commission on the Way Forward: Membership Selection Progresses


Washington, D.C.: The Executive Committee of the Council of Bishops has narrowed the list of potential nominees for membership on the Commission on the Way Forward from over 300 persons to 29. The group includes 8 bishops, 13 clergy, and 8 laity who are representative of our global connection and theological diversity. Letters have been sent to those individuals informing them they have been nominated for membership on the Commission, sharing the mission, vision and scope of the work before ...

John Street Church Celebrates 250 Years


Join John Street Church in Celebrating 250 Years! Throughout 2016 the NYAC Commission on Archives and History and John Street UMC have been celebrating the rich and diverse 250 year history of New York area United Methodism. In October, John Street Church will hold special events to commemorate this important anniversary. October 12, 2016: John Street Church's 250th Anniversary Service.  You're invited to join Bishop Thomas J. Bickerton and the people of John Street Church, the nation's oldest ...

Still present: Methodism in New York


By Linda Bloom Sept. 28, 2016 | NEW YORK (UMNS) The first big conflict at John Street Church in lower Manhattan — celebrating its 250th anniversary this year as Methodism’s oldest continuous U.S. congregation — was whether to remain “downtown” or move to the “suburbs.” It’s a familiar debate for American congregations of any religion. But the conversation at John Street took place nearly 200 years ago, reports the Rev. Jason Radmacher, the current pastor. “As the neighborhood grew and became ...

Bishop Bickerton: "Blowing the Roof Off"


The installation of Thomas J. Bickerton as bishop of the New York Conference was celebrated in the September 25 service filled with music, dance, laughter and love at Salem UMC in Harlem, N.Y. In his sermon, the bishop spoke about "blowing the roof off all of our churches" by sharing the witness that we are all loved by God and a gift to one another. As the church, he said United Methodists need to be saying things that people aren't hearing from the world. "We can't be afraid to go where they ...

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