The View from My Window: Working Hard at “Serving Effortlessly”

David A. Gilmore

October 20, 2016

5 The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” 6 The Lord replied, “If you had faith the size of a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you. 7 “Who among you would say to your slave who has just come in from plowing or tending sheep in the field, ‘Come here at once and take your place at the table’? 8 Would you not rather say to him, ‘Prepare supper for me, put on your apron and serve me while I eat and drink; later ...

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

October 18, 2016

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 ...

News from Methodist Missionaries/Workers in Haiti

Disaster Recovery Ministries Team

October 08, 2016

From: Dr. John and Sharon Harbottle, British Missionaries To: Tom and Wendy Vencuss Matthew Update October 8   News of the damage from Hurricane Matthew has reached you all by now and the pictures in the media we are all seeing are still the only real information available at this stage.  There continues to be no communication with our brothers and sisters in Jeremie and Leon in the far west, but there is some with Cayes on the south coast where virtually all metal sheet roofs were blown off, ...

Letter from Bishop Gesner Paul, Methodist Church of Haiti, Regarding Hurricane Matthew

Disaster Recovery Ministries Team

October 06, 2016

As you know, Haiti has just suffered a severe blow from the monster hurricane Matthew. While broadly speaking Port-au-Prince/Petion-Ville area has been spared, the big South comprised of Cayes, Jeremie, Dame-Marie, Miragoane including Petit-Goave areas have suffered a lot. It is still too early to assess the situation, but according to the news, Cayes and Jeremie have received the full blow of the wind. (click title to read more)

VIM Japan/Philippines 2016

October 05, 2016

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New Payroll Rules - Fair Labor Standards Act

Ross Williams

October 03, 2016

Chances are your church has someone other than the pastor on payroll, so you need to be aware of new Department of Labor (DOL) rules and guidelines that will become effective on December 1, 2016.  The new regulations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) strengthen overtime and wage protection for workers by raising the salary level for "Exempt" employees from the prior amount of $455 per week ($23,660/year) to $913 per week ($47,476/year).  Churches will therefore want to look carefully at ...

2017 Budget Inputs

Ross Williams

September 27, 2016

Dear Treasurers and Finance Chairs (copy to pastors), You will most likely be working on your 2017 budgets soon.  To assist you, listed below are some inputs from the Conference: Clergy Healthcare: The uniform rate for HealthFlex will be $16,104.00. Of this amount, $14,808.00 will be billed to the church and $1,296 will be billed to the pastor. Clergy Pension: (see attached worksheet) The cost will remain 11.8% of total compensation, which is defined as base salary plus either a) 25% of salary ...

Enriching Theological Education at Cambine Theological Seminary

September 27, 2016

by Julio Andre Vilanculos The Cambine Mission in Mozambique, located northwest of Maxixe in Inhambane Province, is more than 100 years old. Methodist missionaries seeking a place to build a hospital, church, and school were given Cambine as a gift from a tribal king in 1890. He asked the missionaries, “Do you come for peace?” That king, who is buried on the Cambine grounds, was the great-great-grandfather of João Somane Machado, who served as bishop for the UMC in Mozambique from 1988 to 2008.  ...

Message by Dorcas Samantha Ewoodzie, Missionary in Kenya

September 27, 2016

Most churches in Africa were initiated by missionaries who relied on financial support from sister churches in Europe, the United States, and Canada. The churches and institutions belonged to the various denominations that established them. Indigenous people did not consider themselves as the owners of these churches. This perspective created a dependence on foreign funding, entirely.  More...  

Living in the Now Can be a Gift

Jim Stinson, Consultant on Older Adult Ministries

September 15, 2016

Alive Now, published by The Upper Room—a ministry of the United Methodist Church—is one magazine my wife, Barbara, and I enjoy. When reading it the other night I found my mind wandering from the writings themselves to the title, Alive Now. Who thought of the name?  What is its origin? Did the title decide the purpose of the magazine or did the name come first, helping to decide its direction? I have been playing with the words and discovered how many times they have come from my lips. I can’t ...

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