The United Methodist Churches in Wisconsin have come together to respond to the current disasters in the United States. In September alone, our churches gave $106,000 to support UMCOR’s disaster relief work in areas such as Puerto Rico, Texas, Louisiana, Florida, Georgia and more. UMCOR is working to fulfill unmet food, clean water, temporary shelter, hygiene supplies, and non-food item needs. Continue to be a part of alleviating human suffering by giving to Advance 901670 Disaster Response, US. Make your check payable to your local church and drop in the offering plate on Sunday. We are supporting those in need, in a time that they need it most.

The Nomads on a Mission Active in Divine Service (NOMADS) visited the Midwest Mission Distribution Center (MMDC) from July 15th - August 4th. The NOMADS have been instrumental in the completion of the finishing work in the 3rd Warehouse, and this year, they refinished and installed the used pallet racking. They also expanded the compressed air service throughout the warehouse, constructed shelves, built school desks, completed exterior painting projects, and much more! For more information on the NOMADS organization, visit their website at www.nomadsumc.org. To learn more about the mission of the MMDC, visit their website at www.midwestmissiondc.org or their Facebook page www.facebook.com/midwestmission.

More than 850 hours of labor were provided by 37 Wisconsin Volunteers in Mission at Lake Lucerne Camp the week of October 1-6. The group sanded and varnished the chapel floor; repaired signs that woodpeckers had pecked on; worked in the low ropes area creating a new whale walk, a group wall and a balance beam; built six new picnic tables; finished the dry-walling, mudding and painting in Aspen; created and painted a new design on the Camp Store; stained the deck on the Retreat Center; brought in the waterfront equipment and repaired the piers; trimmed trees, chipped wood and filled wood boxes; painted walls in Giese Dining Center; did electrical work in Pine and Elm; and did a lot of fall housecleaning: washing curtains, washing windows, vacuuming carpet, etc.

What do you get when you mix an Episcopal pastor, a couple Catholic deacons, a United Methodist pastor, a Lutheran pastor, 10 cases of ice water, and.....an Iman? You get “Collars on the Corner” of course. Collars on the Corner is a pop-up ministry conceived by Episcopal Pastor Kevin Stewart and Catholic Deacon Jim Banach. What began as, essentially, two men and a prayer box on a street corner, has rapidly grown to an unknown number of pastors, priests, and other clergy and laity gathered on random street corners in some of Milwaukee's difficult areas with coolers of water on ice and that same prayer box.

Amy Fuselier, Director of UMCOR Relief Supplies, sent the following communication to Conference Disaster Response Coordinators and Relief Supplies Network Warehouses: “I wanted to take a minute to reach out to all of you and say thank you for the wonderful job that you all have done in rallying our churches and communities to produce the thousands of cleaning buckets that we have received. The response has been overwhelming. Because of your hard work and the generosity of the many members of the United Methodist Church, we have been able to assist those affected in Texas by Hurricane Harvey and those in Florida affected by Hurricane Irma. If or when the opportunity to assist those affected by Maria presents itself, we are certainly prepared to do so."

"Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit..." - Matthew 28:19

On Sunday afternoon on September 10th of 2017, Pastor Ada E. Rosado baptized eleven youth members from Ministero Hispano Fe United Methodist Church in Milwaukee. Rosaly Santibanez-Tanon, Head of Communications from IMU: Ministerio Hispano Fe, and one of the youth members who was baptized, said, “Doing as the scripture instructed, we rejoice at the acts of these brave youth with bright futures and powerful ministries ahead of them. All glory and honor goes to God, the Almighty. Hallelujah!”

Twice each year, Milwaukee's Albright UMC hosts some very special visitors. These are the last Wednesdays of January and July when the national “Point in Time You Count Homeless Count and Survey” takes place to do just as its name suggests: Map the locations of the city's homeless, and learn why they are on the street, how long they've been homeless, and what can be done to return them to a more ‘conventional’ lifestyle. As you can imagine, not an easy task with a population frequently preyed upon by the less savory elements of society; a closed community who lives in what may appear to us to be a "shadow world" in the alleys and under the bridges where most don't even see them. Fortunately, some DO see them.

Madison Korean United Methodist Church celebrated the 3rd anniversary of its church planting on Sunday, September 17th. The church started with five people, ​including four of Pastor Han Myunghoon’s family three years ago; and on the anniversary, 67 people were in worship together. During the service, four of the congregation members shared the meaning of Madison Korean UMC for them; and four guests gave the words of blessings to the church. They also shared a video message produced by previous members who have left Madison following graduation. District Superintendent Rev. Scott Carlson and Director of Congregational Development Rev. Jorge Mayorga visited to bless and encourage the congregation.

Albright United Methodist Church celebrated World Communion Sunday this past weekend. According to Rev. Jorge Luis Mayorga who preached, “The beauty of this day was that the three United Methodist congregations that share facilities: The Albright congregation, the New Hope Hmong, and the new church start project Daai Christian Fellowship, all came together to worship and have Holy Communion.” The scripture was read in eight languages. Mayorga said, “World Communion Sunday calls United Methodists to join Christians around the world to reach out to all people and model diversity among God’s children. It is a day when the diverse body of Christ shares the sacrament of Holy Communion, while affirming that ‘there is…one Lord, one faith, one baptism. One God and Father of all.’” (Ephesians) 

Report from WJFW-TV: Most people can't ignore the stunning images of flooded homes and roof-tops torn away out of the south and Caribbean after two hurricanes rolled through. Hearing about constant fundraisers and donation drives can wear you out. A Rhinelander pastor hopes your spirit to give hasn't been broken yet. First United Methodist Church on Arbutus Street is collecting supplies to send to hurricane-damaged areas. The drive includes things like toiletries, cleaning supplies, and insect repellent. Reverend Keith Wolf says he's aware of "compassion fatigue", but is confident Rhinelander as a whole will step up. "When I put this out to our congregation, people were coming to me saying, 'Thank you for giving us the opportunity.' And I hope that's how people feel about this," Wolf said.

On August 25th, Hurricane Harvey made landfall onto Texas, becoming one of the most devastating storms to hit the United States. Many of us who live far away from the devastation have been struggling with how to best help those in need. On Monday, August 28th, the staff met with the children of the Growing Tree Children’s center, the childcare of United Methodist Children’s Services, to talk about what was happening with Hurricane Harvey. Many of the children were concerned about what they had seen on the news; and the staff of the Children’s Center wanted to be sure that the children had the opportunity to share their thoughts and feelings. From that conversation, came a clear desire from the children that they wanted to help.

Korean and Hispanic United Methodists, and supporters from the Wisconsin Conference got together to enjoy the nice warm weather this past Sunday and play soccer in Johnson Creek. The competition for the Bishop’s Cup 2017 was won by the team from Whitewater Cristo La Roca UMC. Bishop Hee-Soo participated and enjoyed the fellowship with the Korean and Hispanic families. District Superintendent Deborah Thompson presented the Bishop’s Cup to the winning team. See event photos here.

In Duluth News Tribune’s “Best of the Best” of the Twin Ports area feature, Noah’s Ark Day Care Center was voted “Best of the Best Day Care” in all of Superior and Duluth area! This daycare is a ministry of Superior: Faith UMC. Rev. Joel Certa-Werner said, “Congratulations to Cathy Schweikert, the day care director and founder, the superb staff, daycare board members, and everyone from Faith UMC who launched and continue to support this top-rated ministry! What a great time to be part of Faith Church!” Best of the Best Awards published here.

First United Methodist Church of Racine recently held its 3rd Annual Fun Fest. Neighbors were invited for fun, games, live music, and food. It was their greatest turn out so far. All of the prizes and food were donated by church members. According to Jeanne Whiteside, Media Coordinator for First United Methodist Church, “It was wonderful to talk with our neighbors, make new friends, and share the joy of God's Love with all who joined us.”

Update: Rev. Marvin Arno Schilling died peacefully in the evening of Friday, September 22, 2017, in his Capital Lakes residence in Madison, Wisconsin, just two weeks after his joyous celebration of his 106th birthday below. Read Rev. Schilling's story here.

As reported by WMTV, Rev. Marvin Schilling's 106th birthday party drew quite the crowd of family, friends, UW athletes and residents from Capitol Lakes retirement community. "That was so beautiful, I thought I was in heaven," said Marvin after the crowd serenaded him with the "Happy Birthday" song. "His secret is hopeful attitude. A willingness, even at 106, to embrace each day and a deeply embedded faith," said Marvin's son David Schilling. Marvin grew up on a small dairy farm near Kiel, Wisconsin. He is the youngest of five children and first to go to college. He taught in Korea, and was a social justice advocate during the Civil Rights Movement. He spent 80 years working in the United Methodist Church and served with the longest record in Wisconsin. According to Capitol Lakes, he is the oldest living minister, or at least Methodist minister, in the U.S. He entered ministry in Wisconsin in 1937 and served several appointments, including as District Superintendent in Watertown in 1957. Watch WMTV video here.