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Updates posted at www.wisconsinumc.org:

HIGHLIGHT FROM WISCONSIN CONFERENCE: WISCONSIN AMONG ANNUAL CONFERENCES THANKED FOR GIVING 100 PERCENT TO APPORTIONED FUNDS IN 2010
The General Council on Finance and Administration (GCFA) reports that 15 annual conferences paid 100 percent of their apportioned funds in 2010. The conferences are Alaska, Baltimore-Washington, Dakotas, East Ohio, Greater New Jersey, Illinois Great Rivers, Iowa, New York, North Carolina, Northern Illinois, Oklahoma Indian Missionary, Peninsula-Delaware, Red Bird Missionary, West Michigan, and Wisconsin. In 2009, 14 conferences gave 100 percent to all seven apportioned funds. In addition, these annual conferences gave 100 percent to the World Service Fund in 2010. They are Central Pennsylvania, Rio Grande, Texas, Upper New York, Washington and West Michigan. Read full article. Several Wisconsin churches have already paid their full 2011 apportionments. The Wisconsin Conference would like to thank these churches for their spirit of generosity!

SUBMIT PETITIONS FOR CONSIDERATION AT ANNUAL CONFERENCE
The Wisconsin Conference is currently accepting petitions for consideration at Annual Conference in June. The petitions - suggestions for changes in policy created and submitted by the people of the denomination - will be voted upon, and those receiving approval will be sent to the General Conference Petitions Committee with our Conference's support. All submissions are due by March 15, 2011. Submissions received after that date will not be considered by the Wisconsin Annual Conference Petitions Committee, but you may submit them directly to the General Conference Petitions Committee. Click here to read a letter detailing submission guidelines. For more information, contact the Petitions Committee at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or the Reverend Carrie Kreps Wegenast, Petition Committee Chair, at 262-642-7642.

DELEGATES TO THE 2012 GENERAL CONFERENCE AND NORTH CENTRAL JURISDICTIONAL CONFERENCE WILL BE ELECTED AT THE 2011 ANNUAL CONFERENCE
Delegates to the 2012 General Conference and North Central Jurisdictional Conference will be elected at this year's Annual Conference June 12 - 15, 2011 at the Chula Vista Resort and Conference Center in the Wisconsin Dells. The General Conference, which meets every four years, determines the direction of the United Methodist Church's ministry by making decisions about the priorities for ministries, allocating funds to those ministries, approving changes to The Book of Discipline, and taking action on important issues facing the denomination. It is the only body that can speak for the entire United Methodist Church. The Jurisdictional Conferences, in turn, elect Bishops who will lead the Church into the future. This year, the lay members of the Annual Conference will elect three Lay Delegates to attend the General Conference and three to attend the North Central Jurisdictional Conference. Three Clergy Delegates to the General Conference and three to the North Central Jurisdictional Conference will be elected by Clergy Members in Full Connection and Associate Clergy Members of the Annual Conference, along with some of the Provisional Clergy Members and Licensed Local Pastors. Information about the expectations and responsibilities of delegates and how to submit your name as a candidate for election is available on the Conference Secretary's Web site. The deadline for submitting your name as a candidate is April 15, 2011. Questions about the election process should be directed to: Kevin Rice Myers, Wisconsin Conference Secretary, at 857 W. State Street, Burlington, WI 53105-1776 or 608-237-7399 or This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it .

EVENT INFORMATION FOR RETHINK HOW TO DO CHURCH CONFERENCE FEBRUARY 18TH - 19TH

  • Registration: More than 200 people have already registered for this important learning event in Wisconsin. Don't miss out! Register online by noon on Wednesday, February 16th, to have your nametag ready for you. This will help to make the check in process on Saturday much smoother.
  • Child Care: If you will be needing child care, call Christ Church at 262-632-1607 to pre-register. Please print and read the child care registration form and bring it with you, along with food and snacks for your children.
  • Arrival Time: We encourage you to arrive by 8:15 a.m. on Saturday to allow for hanging up your coat, enjoying fellowship, picking up your nametag, and choosing a place to sit. Workshops will begin at 8:40 a.m. Watch for the Boy Scouts wearing RETHINK Church T-shirts who will be helping direct traffic in the parking lot. Please car pool if possible. Rethink Church branded T-shirts and other materials may be purchased on Saturday during break times.
  • Map of Local Resources: Click here for a map of churches, hotels, and restaurants. The distance from Yorkville UMC (A) to Christ Church (B) is about 10 miles. All restaurants and hotels are within these 10 miles on Hwy 20/Washington Avenue.
  • Live Streaming: If you are unable to attend in person, the Saturday sessions will be streamed live on the Wisconsin Conference Web site.

If you have questions about the event, call Barb Ridgely at 888-645-7888 or 414-271-5080. If you have registration questions, call the Wisconsin Annual Conference at 888-240-7328.

WALK THRU THE BIBLE NEW TESTAMENT SEMINAR MARCH 19TH
New Richmond United Methodist Church and First Baptist Church are presenting Walk Thru the Bible, a New Testament seminar, on Saturday, March 19th, from 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. This action-packed seminar grasps the special messages and meanings of the New Testament characters, themes, places, and events in a fun, interactive learning adventure and overview of the New Testament, Whether you are learning it for the first time or just want a refresher, this seminar is for you. The seminar will take place at First Baptist Church, located at 341 North Shore Drive in New Richmond, Wisconsin. Cost is $20 for adults 7th grade and up, and $15 for children ages 5 through 6th grade and includes the seminar, workbook, and lunch. Please send registration to New Richmond UMC, 209 East 2nd Street, New Richmond, WI 54017, attn: Maybelle Hall. For more information, contact Maybelle Hall at 715-497-4568.

THE CENTER FOR PARISH DEVELOPMENT 2011 MISSIONAL CHURCH CONVOCATION WILL TAKE PLACE JULY 14TH - 16TH
The Center for Parish Development is hosting their 2011 Missional Church Convocation entitled The Simple Life: God's Quiet Revolution of Love, Forgiveness, and Unity July 14th - 16th. The event will take place at the Cenacle Retreat and Conference Center in the Lincoln Park neighborhood of Chicago. The featured speaker will be Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove. Learn more about him here. Register here. For more information, click here.

EARLY REGISTRATION DISCOUNTS AVAILABLE FOR WESLEYAN PILGRIMAGE TAKING PLACE NOVEMBER 7TH - 17TH
Methodist clergy and lay leaders who want to be immersed in the practical theology and missional leadership practiced by John and Charles Wesley can take advantage of early registration discounts for a 10-day Wesleyan Pilgrimage in November. Additionally, scholarships are available for provisional members who want to deepen their understanding of Wesleyan missional leadership during the November 7th - 17th pilgrimage being sponsored by the General Board of Discipleship and the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry. Read full article.

EXPLORATION 2011: PASSION AND POSSIBILITIES - AN EVENT FOR 18- 26-YEAR-OLDS WHO ARE EXPLORING ORDAINED MINISTRY IN THE UNITED METHODIST CHURCH
On 11/11/11, rising leaders in The United Methodist Church will gather in St. Louis for Exploration '11. You can help us get them there. Exploration '11 is an opportunity for young people to join with others who are also exploring a call to ordained ministry. The event will include speakers, worship, workshops and small group interactions to help young adults hear, discern, and respond to a call to ordained ministry. Do you know someone 18-26 who is gifted for ordained ministry, but hasn't yet identified that they can use their gifts to serve the Church and the world? Invite them to explore their Passion and Possibilities. Do you know a young adult who is already considering a call to ordained ministry in The United Methodist Church? Invite them to explore their Passion and Possibilities. Do you know people who work with college students and young adults? Pass this invitation on so that they can invite those students or young adults to explore their Passion and Possibilities. Do you have a desire to impact the Church for the future? Your invitation may help a leader for the future hear a call to ministry. Pass this invitation on so that they can explore their Passion and Possibilities. Click here for more information.

NEW WELCOMING CERTIFICATION PROCESS - A Message from United Methodist Communications
United Methodist Communications is pleased to announce a new online process for new and renewing welcoming certified congregations. Instead of the 'paper and pen' process we have been using over the last 10 years of the program, we have moved everything online using our Online Learning Center. For those congregations seeking certification for the first time, the forum Becoming a Welcoming Congregation walks them through the activities they need to complete toward initial certification. With the help of other congregations seeking certification and a team of facilitators, the process is more efficient and engaging. Plus, we are able to quickly update and add new resources to support welcoming ministry. Access to this online forum and process is open to any United Methodist congregation and does not require any pre-authorization. For those congregations already certified at any point since 2001, we are inviting them to join another online forum, Welcoming Certified Congregations, where they will encounter more than 1,000 welcoming certified churches and complete activities toward renewal of their annual certification. This forum provides additional resources, community building and sharing to enhance welcoming ministry across our United Methodist connection. Complete details about both the new and renewing certification online forums and processes are available at our Welcoming Certification webpage.

FREED UP FROM DEBT WORKSHOP FROM THE UNITED METHODIST FOUNDATION
The Wisconsin United Methodist Foundation is offering 2-1/2-hour workshop called Freed Up from Debt. Foundation staff will come to your circuit and present this workshop to those that may benefit from the concepts and techniques for reducing their own debt or those who may be interested in leading the workshop in their own communities. This workshop is appropriate for church members and clergy. Cost is $8 for the book. There will need to be a minimum of 10 participants. Couples are invited to attend together. Advance registration is highly recommended. Freed Up from Debt is an all-inclusive, Biblically-based workshop that provides the tools necessary to get out and stay out of debt for a lifetime. No sharing of personal financial information takes place; however, participants will be asked to please bring the details of any debts, such as your most recent credit card statements and paperwork showing the terms (balance, interest rate, monthly payment) of student loans, vehicle loans, or any other debts. Your church/circuit will need to do all the publicity for this event. Please call 888-903-9863 for more information and to schedule the workshop.

SOCIAL JUSTICE AGENCY SETS 2011 LEGISLATIVE PRIORITIES
The United Methodist General Board of Church & Society (GBCS) has set its 2011 legislative priorities for the 112th U.S. Congress. The six priorities include several holdovers from 2010, including health-care and immigration reform. Read full article.

UMC GLOBAL AIDS FUND COMMITTEE CONDEMNS DEATH OF UGANDAN HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVIST
The United Methodist Church Global AIDS Fund Committee joins more than 70 other religious representatives from around the globe in expressing deep concern about the violent death of human rights activist David Kato in Uganda. The Global AIDS Fund Committee calls for religious leaders in Uganda to speak, act and urge their faithful to reach out in compassion towards those who are marginalized for any reason and to resist all attempts to promote intolerance and hatred. Read full article.

UMCOR UPDATES

  • One Great Hour of Sharing April 3rd: Mohammed and other farmers in the Port Loko District of Sierra Leone lost their sight due to 'river blindness,' a disease caused by parasitic worms transmitted by black flies. They were no longer able to tend their fields and support their families. Thanks to the support of the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) for the West Africa Initiative and the Community Blind Farmers Association, Mohammed and the other blind farmers are learning how to return to their fields and also finding other means of income. Your participation in One Great Hour of Sharing on April 3rd ensures the success of projects like these and offers hope and healing to the world's most vulnerable people. Order your free One Great Hour of Sharing offering envelopes, posters and other worship resources by calling 888-346-3862 or get them online here. Gifts to this fund can be made all year long. Click here for more information.
  • Investing in Life in Haiti: For about 18 years, Eglise Methodiste d'Haiti (EMH, Methodist Church of Haiti) has operated a microcredit program in the town of Petit Goave in Haiti. After last year's devastating earthquake, UMCOR partnered with EMH to strengthen the program and build up the participants. An UMCOR-funded microcredit assessment and development program is helping the church develop the business and financial management skills of the 90 women participants and also strengthening the capacity of the program staff. Read the full story here. One hundred percent of your gift to Haiti Emergency, Fund number 6010, helps the people of Haiti on their long road to recovery. Please send your check to the Wisconsin Conference Treasurer.
  • UMCOR Provides Flood Relief in Sri Lanka: Heavier than usual monsoon rains have created life-threatening conditions for hundreds of thousands of Sri Lankans in the country's Eastern Province. About one million people have been affected by severe flooding, including 200,000 who have been displaced from their homes. Most of the affected populations are located in three districts: Ampara, Batticaloa, and Trincomalee. UMCOR's field office in Batticaloa has mobilized to bring aid to residents from the 16 villages where it runs a sustainable livelihoods project. All of the villagers have been displaced by the flooding. UMCOR is coordinating its relief efforts with the Disaster Management Center, United Nations Development Program, United Nations Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, and the Methodist Church of Sri Lanka. Your help is urgently needed. Please send your check to the Wisconsin Conference Treasurer for Sri Lanka Relief and Development, UMCOR Advance number 3020630.
  • Ending a 25-Year Cycle of Violence: While still in high school in Honduras, Alicia and Noel (not their real names) fell in love, married, and started a family. Noel, who had been born in the United States, decided to move his family to California. When Alicia opposed the plan, he threatened to take their baby and leave her behind. She relented. For 25 years, Noel threatened Alicia with taking their children away from her whenever she mentioned returning to Honduras. He abused her physically and psychologically, and refused to help her normalize her immigration status. Things turned around for Alicia when she encountered a Justice for Our Neighbors (JFON) immigration clinic. JFON Southwest Texas helped her apply for residency under the Violence Against Women Act and break a 25-year cycle of abuse. UMCOR's Justice for Our Neighbors provides free, professional legal services to immigrants and asylum seekers. It connects a national network of church-based, volunteer-led immigration clinics to those who need a helping hand to navigate the maze of rules and laws that affect their lives in the United States. Read First Monday, JFON's monthly newsletter. And, to help, send your check to the Wisconsin Conference Treasurer for Justice for Our Neighbors, UMCOR Advance number 901285.

TIPS AND RESOURCES

  • Information About Annual Conference:
    • Special Meals for Groups: Please contact Amber Wolover at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it immediately to book a room for Annual Conference, as space and time are limited. Please keep in mind that lunch is included in your registration fee for Monday and Tuesday and that our lunch breaks from plenary for Monday and Tuesday will be an hour at most.
    • Display Tables: Please contact Kelly Fowler at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it to book a display table at Chula Vista.

HALLELUJAH MOMENTS

  • Harvest of Hope Turns 25 - A Letter from Roger T. Williams, Chair of Harvest of Hope Fund: Read it here.
  • A Note of Thanks from Alex Dickerson, Lay Leader at Odanah UMC: We at Odanah UMC would like to thank the Bishop and her VIM team from the bottom of our hearts for all you did for us. We recently received two checks from the team for which we are most grateful. Thanks again. Chiimegwech!
  • Immanuel United Methodist Church Celebrates Repayment of Roof Loan: Sunday, March 6th, Immanuel United Methodist Church in Jefferson will celebrate and thank God for His direction that enabled us to repay their roof loan. The money was borrowed from their United Methodist Foundation Endowment account and repaid with 5 percent interest, totaling approximately $50,000.

CLASSIFIEDS

  • Noah's Ark Christian Learning Center at Sussex United Methodist Church Seeks Part-Time Teacher. Read more.
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If you have a Conference-related event, a hallelujah moment or a newsworthy story that you want included in ENEWS, or if you have a suggestion for ENEWS, please contact: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it . Note that ENEWS is also posted weekly on the home page under Newsletters at www.wisconsinumc.org.
 
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