Due to the spike in COVID-19 transmission, the ARUMC Children’s Council voted to cancel the Beyond Conference on January 21 and 22, 2022. Registration refunds will be issued soon to all those who signed up for the in-person conference. Each district Children’s Ministry Representative will be planning a mini-Beyond specific to each district with a spring and summer date. Please watch the ARUMC Children’s Ministry newsletter and social media for these new opportunities.
To subscribe to the ARUMC Children’s Ministry newsletter, email Melinda Shunk at email@example.com.
United Methodist Communications
Office of Public Information
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 21, 2021
United Methodist leaders have reached a settlement in the matter of the Boy Scouts of America’s (BSA) pending bankruptcy proceedings. Upon final court approval, the settlement would absolve any claims of sexual abuse that may have occurred in congregation-sponsored Scouting programs.
Under the terms of the settlement, United Methodists would raise and give $30 million over a three-year period into a fund that will be utilized to compensate survivors, and United Methodist congregations that charter Scout troops and packs would be released from all abuse claims involving Scouting activities. A team has been formed to identify strategies and materials that may be used to raise the funds. The church would also agree to work for the healing of survivors and recommit to work toward ending sexual abuse of young people. Through the General Commission on United Methodist Men, United Methodists will work with the BSA to continue to ensure Scout safety and grow Scouting ministry as part of its mandate through The Book of Discipline.
“We are sorry for what occurred and are praying for all those who experienced harm through Scouting activities. We are committed to the protection of children and youth, and the United Methodist Council of Bishops will be working with the church, the Survivor Working Group and BSA to address policies, programs, and procedures in order to keep Scouts safe from abuse,” said Bishop John Schol, chair of the UMC leadership team created to support the United Methodist chartering organizations in the bankruptcy matter.
The settlement follows months of mediation by an Ad Hoc committee of bishops, chancellors and general agency employees that has been advocating for United Methodist interests.
“I want to thank everyone who has been working through the mediation process for the healing and just resolution of the survivors,” said Schol. “Our settlement agreement has the support of both the BSA and the Coalition of Abused Scouts for Justice.”
The United Methodist Church has long worked proactively to prevent child abuse. The percentage of claims in the last 20 years potentially related to United Methodist congregations’-sponsored scouting units is less than 1 percent of all UMC claims.
Under the terms of the agreement, denomination leaders will intensify efforts to prevent and raise awareness of child sexual abuse.
The Council of Bishops of The United Methodist Church has committed to lead the church in carrying out the following:
- Work with all United Methodists to raise funds for the Survivor Trust Fund.
- Tell the story of harm done to survivors through a series of articles to be published by the denomination and by each U.S. annual conference to draw attention to child sexual abuse and call upon the church to be vigilant in working to prevent child sexual abuse in churches, homes and the community.
- Carry out a denomination-wide review of all Safe Sanctuaries and other policies to safeguard young people from sexual abuse and update policies as necessary and ensure the policies are being followed.
- Provide opportunities for sexual abuse survivors to share their experiences with United Methodist leadership if they choose to do so.
- Work with all United Methodist ministries and with the Boy Scouts of America to continue to make programs safe for all young people.
- Provide leadership to help all BSA chartering organizations to make a $100 million contribution to the Survivor Trust Fund.
- Participate as a member of the Survivors Working Group
The Ad Hoc Committee recommends that churches who filed a proof of claim vote “yes” on the plan and for those who previously voted “no,” the Ad Hoc Committee recommends congregations change their vote to “yes.” An email from conference leadership will be sent to churches that filed a proof of claim on how to vote “yes” and how to change a vote from “no” to “yes.”
Diane Degnan firstname.lastname@example.org
Rev. Jorge Acevedo, senior pastor at Grace Church, a multi-site United Methodist congregation in Southwest Florida, will be guest speaker at Little Rock’s St. James United Methodist Church Nov. 13-14. His topic will be “Ministries of Recovery from Addiction.”
As featured guest of the 2021 Fiser-Christie Lectureship, Acevedo will participate in a panel discussion from 9:30-11:30 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 13, and speak at the 8:30, 9:30 and 11 a.m. worship services Sunday, Nov 14. All events are open to the public and will also be live-streamed at www.stjameslr.org.
Rescued from a life of addictions, Acevedo leads a congregation recognized as having one of the largest and most effective recovery ministries in America. A published author, Acevedo has been recognized for excellence in evangelism and church leadership.
The annual lectureship, which honors the lives of Paul Martin Fiser, M.D., and Rev. James and Marie Christie, explores topics related to the Church’s responsibility for and activities in missions, both domestic and international. St. James UMC is located at 321 Pleasant Valley Drive.
Contact: Rev. Jessica Durand, Senior Associate Pastor, Jessica@stjameslr.org or (501) 217-6710.
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Media inquiries: Jane Dennis, 501-681-9472
ATLANTA (October 18, 2021) – United Methodist Global Ministries is launching a new initiative and joining interfaith partners in an effort to increase the equitable distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine around the world. Funds donated to a new Advance giving project will support “Love Beyond Borders: The Interfaith Movement to End the Pandemic” campaign supporting UNICEF’s global vaccine distribution efforts.
Proposed to Global Ministries by First United Methodist Church of Boise, Idaho’s, missions team, “Love Beyond Borders: The Interfaith Movement to End the Pandemic” seeks to engage The United Methodist Church in supporting UNICEF’s global COVID-19 response, including distributing safe, effective COVID-19 vaccines through the COVAX facility, diagnostics and treatments.
Through this initiative, members of The United Methodist Church will contribute to UNICEF’s historic efforts in leading the procurement and supply of 1.4 billion COVID-19 vaccines to approximately 196 participating COVAX countries and economies by the end of 2021. For just $37 dollars, members can help provide 10 people with two doses of the vaccine. Global Ministries has created Advance #3022671 for this effort to ensure that 100% of donations go directly to UNICEF USA for this project.
“Since the start of the humanitarian crisis, Global Ministries and the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) have responded with health boards, medical professionals, disaster management coordinators and faith leaders to help, as comprehensively as possible, manage the crisis and strengthen existing work,” said Roland Fernandes, general secretary of United Methodist Global Ministries and UMCOR. “It has been said that no one is safe until everyone is safe. Helping to fund the equitable distribution of vaccines through this Advance will help United Methodists play a key role in efforts to make that a global reality.”
“United Methodists in the Northwest have been saving lives by fighting COVID-19 for more than a year. Our people and churches have made this a priority by masking, keeping distance, meeting immediate needs for food, shelter and community, suspending in-person worship, singing and communion, welcoming and encouraging vaccination,” said Bishop Elaine J. W. Stanovsky, episcopal leader serving the Greater Northwest Area of The United Methodist Church. “But it was hard to know how to extend our love of Christ and one another beyond local communities to neighbors around the world. ‘Love Beyond Borders’ is a grassroots campaign, envisioned by one member of one church in the Oregon-Idaho Conference. Now, as an Advance project within The United Methodist Church, working with interfaith partners and UNICEF USA, it offers a beautiful way to protect and save lives around the world.”
The coronavirus pandemic continues to have severe consequences, especially for the poorest and most vulnerable populations. Accelerating the rate at which all people are vaccinated is the key to ending the pandemic, alleviating suffering and stopping deaths.
Global Ministries and UMCOR have supported partners in Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and North America as they work to respond to the pandemic and its impacts. Grants have been awarded for personal protective and essential medical equipment; cleaning solution, soap and handwashing stations; assistance with salaries, livelihoods, food, rent and utilities; awareness and training in COVID-19 prevention; and vaccine promotion.
Activities with partners and communities have included training and grants, directed and administered through Global Ministries’ Global Health program.
In July, as part of the Interfaith Vigil for Global COVID-19 Vaccine Access, Global Ministries urged President Biden to share COVID-19 vaccine stockpiles and advocated for equitable global distribution of vaccines. He has pledged 500 million vaccine doses to the world’s lowest income nations, but far more will be needed to stop the spread of this deadly illness.
At its August meeting, the Connectional Table, a United Methodist leadership body, took an action affirming the importance of equitable COVID-19 vaccine distributions.
According to research from Northeastern University, 61% of deaths globally could be averted if an effective vaccine were distributed to all countries proportional to their populations. While many wealthy countries have made significant inroads into vaccinating their citizens, this is not the case in less-developed countries. The Love Beyond Borders campaign will support COVAX’s initiative to equitably distribute vaccines around the world.
About the General Board of Global Ministries of The United Methodist Church
Global Ministries is the worldwide mission and development agency of The United Methodist Church. Founded in 1819, Global Ministries today supports more than 200 missionaries in over 60 countries, including the United States. It has personnel, projects and partners in 115 countries. Founded in 1940, the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) is the global humanitarian relief agency of The United Methodist Church and is a part of Global Ministries. Learn more about Global Ministries by visiting umcmission.org or by following facebook.com/GlobalMinistries and twitter.com/UMCmission.
Most leaders assume that navigating the challenges of a changing world, while trying to lead wisely and well, will be the most difficult thing they face. Yet, oftentimes the most important obstacle isn’t the one faced outside the church: It’s the resistance –including sabotage -encountered inside and among a body of believers. In this two-part workshop, Tod Bolsinger will help shape you into the kind of wise, resilient leader who can lead through the external challenges and internal resistance at the same time.
Join us from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on October 28 and 29 for this two-part, virtual experience. Register by clicking here.
Cost: $25 for supporting conference members (Missouri, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Arkansas), $40 for other conferences
October 28, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Central Time
Session 1: The Leadership Challenge of a Rapidly Changing World
Session 2: Learning to Lead All Over Again
October 29, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Central Time
Session 3: Surviving the Sabotage
Session 4: Resistance and Resilience
Tod Bolsinger, MDiv, Ph.D., is the Executive Director of the De Pree Center Church Leadership Initiative, a Senior Fellow of the De Pree Center for Leadership and Associate Professor of Leadership Formation at Fuller Theological Seminary. Tod was the founder of the Fuller Leadership Platform, an innovative approach to online formation and leadership development, and served as a Vice President of Fuller Seminary for six years.
He is the author of five books, including the Outreach Magazine Resource of the Year in pastoral leadership, Canoeing the Mountains: Christian Leadership in Uncharted Territory, Leadership for a Time of Pandemic: Practicing Resilience and Tempered Resilience: How Leaders are Formed in the Crucible of Change. He served as a pastor for 27 years. Bolsinger speaks, consults and is an executive coach for corporate, non-profit, educational and church organizations in transformational leadership. His blogs and other resources can be found at depree.org/church.
Tod is married to Beth, an executive coach, consultant, and professional artist. They have two adult children, Brooks and Ali, and a son-in-law, Ben. An avid outdoor lover, if he hadn’t taken biology after lunch in high school, Tod would have been a National Park Ranger. When he retires, he is going to do hiking trail maintenance, trout rescue and be a ski host who makes sure there are four people on every quad chair lift.