By Dan Dick

What will it take to move us from the invitation to Imagine Wisconsin Anew to the challenge to Make A-New Wisconsin? We will be exploring together all of the possibilities--so we invite you to think in real and concrete ways how we can engage in mercy and justice ministries; launch new faith opportunities and revitalize existing congregations; feed people in body, mind, soul, and Spirit through Soul Food ministries; and welcome people of all nations, races, ethnicities and backgrounds. 

The Wisconsin Conference has produced a series of short videos, perfect for sharing in your church. Each week or so, we will share a new video; and all videos will eventually be available for streaming or download. We are proud to present the first in the series. Enjoy.

Thank you for your continued prayers and donations of time, money, and goods to those affected by recent storms and flooding in our North West District. The United Methodist Churches of Rusk and Barron Counties are hosting a prayer service at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, May 24 at Chetek United Methodist Church, 300 Stout St, Chetek, WI. This service is open to the entire community. Please join us for a time of prayer for all who have been affected by the recent storms. Monetary donations are still being accepted, and can be sent to the Wisconsin Conference Treasurer, 750 Windsor Street, Sun Prairie, WI 53590. Please write the check out to Wisconsin Conference Treasurer, with NW Disaster Recovery #7775 in the memo line. If you want, you can also submit the check in your local church offering, and your church treasurer can send to the Conference Finance office, along with apportionment payment.

Reflections is the Wisconsin Conference’s print publication that includes a combination of feature editorials, articles, and information about United Methodist news happening around the state. Our latest issue features a preview of Annual Conference, stories of Wisconsin churches who have answered the call to Imagine Wisconsin Anew, information on how your church can enroll in eGiving, and more! Churches and subscribers will be receiving copies in the mail, and it is also available as a free download by clicking here. If you are interested in a free subscription and/or want additional copies for you or your church, contact Michele Virnig at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 888-240-7328.

Paul Webster, a missionary with the Board of Global Ministries serving at the Mujila Falls Agriculture Centre in Zambia, will be in Wisconsin from June 20 – July 23 and is available to visit with your church during that time. Paul is a Wisconsin native whose ministry as a rural economic development specialist at Mujila Falls serves the needs of poor, rural peoples. Each project promotes major programs in education, health, sustainable and appropriate agriculture, community development, evangelism, and church construction. The projects strive to address community social, economic and health problems holistically, thus empowering participants. Click here to read more about Paul.

Paul will be traveling around Wisconsin by district: June 20-25 in the South West, June 26 – July 9 in the South East, July 10-12 in the North East, July 13-16 in the North Central, and July 17-23 in the North West. Paul especially likes breakfast, lunch, and dinner meetings during the week with small groups of interested people. Contact Tony Fuller at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 920- 722-7802 or 1175 Stead Dr., Menasha, WI 54952 to schedule a time for Paul to visit your church or event.

There is still time to register for Annual Conference! Please note that the registration rate has increased to $215, and no refunds on food, registrations, or lanyards will be given at this time. Visit https://tinyurl.com/WAC2017 to register today! This year’s Conference will be held June 16-19 at the Madison Marriott West, with Monday, June 19 as a Learning Day. The theme will be “One with Christ.” Please join us as we rejoice in our unity with the Lord or watch the live stream if you cannot join us in person. Click here to see this year's Ingathering list and click here to watch a video invitation from many of our Conference Staff members with more exciting information about this year's gathering. With any further questions, contact Registrar Kellye Walker-Pontius at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or (608) 837-7328.

  • Latest Updates

    • Download Pre-Conference Workbook: Click here to download an electronic copy of the Pre-Conference Workbook. All members to Annual Conference should have recieved a hard copy of this document in the mail. If not, please contact Katie Hoeppner in the Service Department at (608) 837-3367.
    • General Conference Amendments to be Presented at Annual Conference: Part 1 of The Book of Discipline (¶¶1-61) comprises the Constitution of The United Methodist Church. Five amendments were presented to the 2016 General Conference and were passed, by a two-thirds majority. To be ratified, votes must be taken in all annual and central conferences, and two-thirds of our conferences must approve them. Constitutional Amendments are unique in that there is no discussion or debate on them, no amendments or substitutions are allowed, and they each receive a simple “yes, I approve” or “no, I reject” vote. Only questions for clarification are allowed. No discussion of rationale or intentions will be entertained. A ballot will be distributed with Amendments 1-5, and yes/no check boxes, to the voting members present at Annual Conference on Sunday, June 18 at approximately 1:30 in the afternoon. The final results of all the balloting will be shared following the first Council of Bishop’s meeting after voting is completed.
    • Donations Needed at Midwest Missions Distribution Center (MMDC): MMDC recently sent out almost 4,000 buckets to Missouri and Illinois flood areas. For Ingathering, monetary donations are very helpful, as MMDC is able to buy in bulk at a discount. If actual buckets are provided, they must be new and 5-gallon sized only.
  • Registration Announcements

    • Walk-In Registration Notice: Lay Members to Annual Conference who choose to register on site will be charged a $50 late registration and extra $75 walk-in fee, bringing the registration to a total of $290. Clergy will also be subject to this fee, and additionally will be reported to their District Superintendent.
    • Changes to Registration in 2017: Click here for more information.
  • Other Reminders

    • Order a 2017 Journal and Directory CD-ROM: Click here for more information.
    • Fill out Clergy Information Form: Click here to download the form with more information.
    • Fill out Nominations Form: Fill out the nominations form to volunteer for a board, agency, or committee of the Wisconsin Annual Conference. Click here to view the most recent Nominations Committee Report, updated May 23.
    • Register for Blueprint for Wellness Screening: Click here for more information.
  • Conference Highlights

    • View Updated Agenda: Click here to view the latest agenda, updated May 1.
    • Adam Hamilton to be Featured Speaker: Click here for more information. Note that we are unable to accommodate guest walk-ins for Adam Hamilton’s presentations. All of Adam Hamilton's sessions will be live-streamed for free to the public during Annual Conference.
    • Attend Mission Luncheon on Sunday: Click here for more information.
    • Opening Worship and Ordination Service Designations Announced: Click here to read more about the Milwaukee Urban Ministry Fund and Clergy Transition Funds.
    • Future Annual Conference Themes and Dates Announced: The Annual Conference dates and themes for the remainder of the quadrennium will be "One with Each Other" June 15-18, 2018; "One in Ministry to All the World" June 14-17, 2019; and "One in Community" June 12-15, 2020.

Registration is now open for Bishop Jung’s second annual Interfaith Bus Tour and Retreat August 18-20. Opportunities include participating in a Shabbat service at Congregation Shalom in Milwaukee; visiting Sikh, Islamic, and Hindu worship centers in and around Milwaukee; and worshipping at a Coptic Orthodox Church in Oak Creek. Participants will also have the opportunity to speak with a Buddhist priest, a Muslim professor, and Bishop Jung. Click here to register, click here to download a flyer with more information, and contact Mel Vance with any questions at (608) 630-9485. Click here to see pictures from last year.

Do you long to be with others who share a desire to deepen one’s relationship with God through teaching, prayer, daily Communion, and covenantal fellowship? The Wisconsin Five-Day Academy for Spiritual Formation is a place where Christian faith is challenged, all in the context of a shared experience led by faculty presenters, who invite participants to reflect on your own spiritual journey, and how God is at work in your life. The Academy is for clergy and laity. It is designed for both “head” and “heart,” communicating knowledge about Christian spiritual formation and a context for experiencing it. Registration is now open for this year’s retreat, which will be held October 29 to November 3 at the Siena Retreat Center in Racine. Click here to download a brochure with more information and registration form.

Peace with Justice Sunday is June 11. On this Special Sunday of The United Methodist Church, congregations around the country will join together to help break down barriers so that all God’s children have equal access to jobs, education, food, clean water, health care, and much more. For a collection of resources to help celebrate, download the Peace with Justice Pastor and Leader’s Kit. Download resources.

Discipleship Ministries is starting a grass-roots effort called #SeeAllThePeople, aimed at inspiring a disciple-making movement across The United Methodist Church. The agency will shift its focus to provide resources, events and a discipleship system that stresses congregations forming relationships with those outside church walls. Read press release.
See video on initiative.

The United Methodist Church is studying a draft proposal to establish full communion relationship with The Episcopal Church, a significant step toward bringing the two churches into a closer, visible unity. Read press release

Early bird registration for Annual Conference ends this Friday, May 19! This will be the last day to order meals, book a discounted hotel room, request translation and special needs, cancel registration for a refund, and request being on the display table waiting list. After Friday, the registration rate increases to $215, and no refunds on food, registrations, or lanyards will be given. Visit https://tinyurl.com/WAC2017 to register today! This year’s Conference will be held June 16-19 at the Madison Marriott West, with Monday, June 19 as a Learning Day. The theme will be “One with Christ.” Please join us as we rejoice in our unity with the Lord or watch the live stream if you cannot join us in person. Click here to see this year's Ingathering list and click here to watch a video invitation from many of our Conference Staff members with more exciting information about this year's gathering. With any further questions, contact Registrar Kellye Walker-Pontius at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or (608) 837-7328.

  • Latest Updates

    • Attend Mission Luncheon on Sunday: All persons with an interest in the mission activities of the Wisconsin Annual Conference are invited to attend the Annual Mission Luncheon on Sunday, June 18 at noon. The cost of the luncheon will be $16 for a buffet-style lunch featuring chicken parmesan, pasta, Caesar salad, rolls and butter. Mary Balson, Chair of the Mission Motivation Committee, will be the hostess for this event. Mission guests Paul Webster, missionary at Mujila Falls, Zambia; David Phipps In Mission Together Coordinator for West Africa; Stephen and Gail Quigg, North Central Jurisdiction’s Mission Interpreters; and Tammy Kuntz, North Central Jurisdiction’s Volunteers in Mission Coordinator will be in attendance. In addition, the winners of the Thelma Gregg Award and the Love in Action Award will be present, as well as, persons involved in the Health and Welfare Ministries and other Board of Global Ministries agencies of the Conference. If you would like to attend this event, please contact Mary Balson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 715-495-1213 by May 20. Checks can be sent to Mary Balson at N5027 State Road 175, Fond du Lac, Wisconsin 54937. Persons who have purchased the meal plan for the Annual Conference cannot use their meal ticket for this luncheon.
  • Registration Announcements

    • Walk-In Registration Notice: Lay Members to Annual Conference who choose to register on site will be charged a $50 late registration and extra $75 walk-in fee, bringing the registration to a total of $290. Clergy will also be subject to this fee, and additionally will be reported to their District Superintendent.
    • Display Table, Hotel Rooms, and Meals Reminder: All display tables have been filled. There are still rooms available at the Marriott. The deadline to register for meals is in three days on May 19. NO meals will be available for purchase after that date.
    • Changes to Registration in 2017: Click here for more information.
  • Other Reminders

    • Order a 2017 Journal and Directory CD-ROM: Click here for more information.
    • Fill out Clergy Information Form: Click here to download the form with more information.
    • Fill out Nominations Form: Fill out the nominations form to volunteer for a board, agency, or committee of the Wisconsin Annual Conference. Click here to view the most recent Nominations Committee Report, updated May 2.
    • Register for Blueprint for Wellness Screening: Click here for more information.
  • Conference Highlights

    • View Updated Agenda: Click here to view the latest agenda, updated May 1.
    • Adam Hamilton to be Featured Speaker: Click here for more information.
    • Future Annual Conference Themes and Dates Announced: The Annual Conference dates and themes for the remainder of the quadrennium will be "One with Each Other" June 15-18, 2018; "One in Ministry to All the World" June 14-17, 2019; and "One in Community" June 12-15, 2020.
    • Opening Worship Special Offering to Benefit Milwaukee Urban Ministry Fund: The Milwaukee Urban Ministry Fund is an opportunity to partner with local congregations in the Milwaukee central city seeking to provide innovative ministry options with their underserved communities. The challenges faced in these communities include long term economic decline, high unemployment and lack of access to jobs, limited health and wellness options, few positive alternatives to violence, and institutional racism. Since its birth, the Methodist movement has been in the forefront of social change and justice around the world. Your generous contributions to the Milwaukee Urban Ministry Fund will continue this rich tradition of transformation by training and equipping community developers who will work in partnership with our congregations to become agents of positive change as we proclaim God’s love in tangible and life changing ways. Thanks for your contributions.
    • Ordination Service Special Offering to Benefit Clergy Transition Fund: The Clergy in Transition Fund, supported by the offerings that are taken during the Ordination Service at Annual Conference each year, is used at the discretion of the Board of Ordained Ministry to provide limited, short-term financial assistance to clergy who unexpectedly find it necessary to leave active ministry, either temporarily or permanently. They may also find themselves between appointments for a period of time, for reasons that are beyond their control. These transitions out of active ministry often come with very little notice or lead-time. Clergypersons in this kind of transition not only find themselves with no source of income, but must often also find a new place to live. They may lose health insurance coverage as well. The Clergy in Transition Fund has been used with the approval of the Chairperson of the Board to provide assistance with things like extending health insurance coverage for a brief period of time or locating/securing housing for the clergy person and his/her family. Grants from the fund generally are made in amounts between $1000 and $2500, depending upon the specific circumstances and needs of the clergy person in transition. Your generous gifts to the Clergy in Transition Fund make it possible for the Wisconsin Conference to provide compassionate assistance to clergy who find that they must suddenly and unexpectedly move out of their current ministry. Thank you for your generous support.

All members to Annual Conference are encouraged to attend a Pre-Conference briefing in your district on this Saturday, May 20. Topics to be addressed include an update on the Feasibility Study for the State-Wide Fundraising Campaign, constitutional amendments from General Conference 2016, Annual Conference 101 Tips, the proposed 2018 budget, and a preview of highlights from this year’s Annual Conference.

  • North Central District - Stevens Point: The Springs (600 Wilshire Blvd., Stevens Point, WI 54481, 9 - 11:30 a.m.)
  • North East District - Neenah: Faith UMC (1025 Tullar Road, Neenah, WI 54956, 9 - 11:30 a.m.)
  • North West District - Shell Lake UMC (135 Reinhart Dr., Shell Lake, WI 54871, 10 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.)
  • South East District - West Bend: Fifth Avenue UMC (323 S. 5th Ave., West Bend, WI 53095, 9 - 11:30 a.m.)
  • South West District - Madison: Asbury (6101 University Ave, Madison, WI 53705, 9 - 11:30 a.m.)

At WIUMCamps, summer staff are provided with excellent training before the first campers arrive. New staff spend two weeks earning certifications in lifeguarding, first aid, and archery instruction (among others). They learn best practices for engaging with children and youth at a variety of ages and stages in their lives.They are instructed in Safe Sanctuaries and Risk Management, as well as how to meet requirements of the Wisconsin State Legal Code and the American Camp Association. Our staff learn how to give of themselves, every day with every camper, to make a difference in the world. You can help make a difference in the lives of our new camp staff by attending a worship service to commission them to this ministry for the summer at Pine Lake Camp on Friday, June 9 at 10:30 a.m. No RSVP is required to attend the service, but if you would like to remain after the service for lunch with the incoming staff, please RSVP to Sharon Cook at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by Friday, June 2. Click here for more information on WIUMCamps.

Registration is now open for Bishop Jung’s second annual Interfaith Bus Tour and Retreat August 18-20. Opportunities include participating in a Shabbat service at Congregation Shalom in Milwaukee; visiting Sikh, Islamic, and Hindu worship centers in and around Milwaukee; and worshipping at a Coptic Orthodox Church in Oak Creek. Participants will also have the opportunity to speak with a Buddhist priest, a Muslim professor, and Bishop Jung. Click here to register, click here to download a flyer with more information, and contact Mel Vance with any questions at (608) 630-9485. Click here to see pictures from last year.

Rising Sun Camp, a United Methodist Camp for children ages 10-14 who have one or both parents incarcerated, takes place at Camp Lucerne on July 9-14, 2017. The registration cost to campers is only $5.00, and round trip bus transportation from Madison and Milwaukee is provided. Click here to view the camp brochure. Thirty campers will be accepted on a first come, first served basis. Donations can be made to the Wisconsin Conference UMC Treasurer with Rising Sun Camp Fund No. 7783 in the memo line. Make copies of the camp brochure as needed, and get them into the hands of families caring for children who would qualify to attend. Please have them fill out both the registration form and health form. Contact Afi Dobbins at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information.