Weekly News: Elizabeth River District of The United Methodist Church
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Issue: Wednesday, September 29, 2021
Today, 1 pm, How the Church Can Become a Healer!
Join us in a conversation on 'how the church can become a healer, not a helper' as we walk through the tragedy of this pandemic. We will have a conversion with J.R. Briggs around his new book, "A Time to Heal; Offering Hope to a wounded world in the Name of Jesus." Rev. Jessie Colwell, Director of Clergy Excellence, will also join us for a conversion on how clergy can heal and prepare for the coming All Saints Sunday! 

To join this webinar please register

Also, to learn more about Relaunching visit

There will be a work day at the McLeigh-Holland Heart Haven’s Home in Virginia Beach on Saturday, Oct. 16th from 9 am until.  Lunch will be provided.  We will be painting, yard work and other miscellaneous jobs both inside and out … weather permitting.  Oct. 23rd will be the rain date.  If you, or a team from your church is interested in helping please RSVP Johnnie Draughon at:

Celebrate World Communion Sunday, Oct. 3
World Communion Sunday is this Sunday, Oct. 3. Resources UMC has assembled a Pastor and Leader’s Kit, a collection of resources that you can use to promote this Special Sunday. This kit has everything you need to empower your congregation to give generously. You can post some of these resources on all your social media outlets. Learn more...

This should be a great learning opportunity for small churches! Most congregations in the nation have a membership under 100, but most books and workshops are created by mega-churches. In this webinar, Dr. Blake Bradford shares how smaller congregations can use their unique giftedness to fulfill God's mission. He says smaller churches can enhance their vitality by clarifying their purpose, engaging their local community, leveraging small church relational intimacy to reach people and nurture disciples, rightsizing their leadership and governance structures to empower laity, and strategically utilizing pastoral leadership. For more information go to:

To join the online event on October 5, 2pm:
Charge Conferences
This October!

Due to Covid-19 numbers rising and hearing concerns, the DS asked CC Clusters to meet and discuss what venue works best for each charge (virtual or in-person). The majority will be participating in an online virtual session.  One cluster will be participating in-person at their host church. Dates and times remain the same. Use the link below to access the schedule.

The CC focus this year will be a presentation in art form by each church or charge to celebrate God’s blessings in a personal life or the congregational life. Be creative! The time allowed will be 5 minutes per church or 10 minutes per charge. Any videos will be shared directly by the church during the CC session.  Please do not email videos to the District Office. Got a question about Charge Conference, or EVC Reports?  Contact Connie Owens at or call 757-710-8258.
Online EVC Training Video
Conference IT Manager Bryan Compton has recorded one of the September Online EVC Training sessions. The video is located on EVC.  After clergy or EVC administrators sign-in, click on the "How to Section" (blue box)  or click on the video link here:
Mark your calendars now, and please join us on Tuesday evening, October 12, 2021 at 6:30 PM EDT for a Love, Learn, and Lead webinar on inclusion with Bishop Sharma Lewis. The Bishop will be sharing with us the need for more ethnic involvement within UMM, larger cluster UMM fellowships, and a potential relationship between UMM and the Pan-Methodist movement.
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 898 2460 7164
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Clergywomen's Collective, Tues., Oct. 12
Clergy sisters of the VA Annual Conference,
You are invited to attend—in person or by Zoom— a special meeting of the Clergywomen’s Collective on Tuesday, October 12, beginning at 10:30 a.m. the in person meeting will be at Good Shepherd UMC, 9155 Hungary Rd, Henrico, VA. The reason for this special invitation is that we will be sharing the story of the two earliest Methodist clergywomen in VA and honoring the women who have served or are serving as District Superintendents. Following our opening litany, Marg Kutz who wrote Nevertheless She Preached, will share some stories about Lillian Russell and Mildred Long. Then we will have a panel of women DSs sharing from their experiences on the Cabinet. In particular, Cynthia Corley, the first woman DS in VA, and who knew both Lillian and Mildred, will be with us. There will be time, hopefully, to be able to ask our own questions.

Please email me at if you plan to come in person or would like the Zoom link.

Normally, we bring our own lunches to eat as we talk. For this meeting, women who choose can take the opportunity to go out to lunch afterwards. No arrangements will be made for reservations.
Laity Sunday - Oct. 17, 2021
From Martha Stokes, Conference Lay Leader
Laity Sunday is a special Sunday defined by General Conference “to celebrate the ministry of all Christians” (The Book of Discipline - 2016, ¶ 264.2). Traditionally observed on the third Sunday in October, Laity Sunday is one way we express the deep conviction that all are called to participate in God’s mission and live this calling through the ministry of the church. Ministries of the laity include lay leaders, lay servants, lay speakers, lay ministers, lay missioners, deaconesses, home missioners, United Methodist Women, United Methodist Men, The Walk to Emmaus, Chrysalis, missionary service, and so many other significant forms of ministry.

The 2021 theme is Rise Up! And Revive God’s Gift (2 Timothy 1:3-7). While there are currently not any specific Laity Sunday resources on the Discipleship Ministries website, I would encourage you to look at the liturgical resources for the third Sunday of October. They are beautifully worded and may fit well with your worship plans.
Wesley Seminary hosts 'Moving Toward Wholeness: Traumatized Texts and Bodies," Oct. 29
Save The Date: Wesley Theological Seminary will hold a virtual conference, “Moving Toward Wholeness: Traumatized Texts and Bodies” on Friday, Oct. 29, 2021, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. Eastern. To facilitate recovery and resilience, the conference will explore the intersections among trauma studies in psychiatry and psychology; ancient experiences of trauma in the Bible; and vicarious, minority, and gender trauma today. Learn more now and register free at
New Doctor of Ministry in Digital Ministry Course starting at Wesley Seminary!
The COVID-19 pandemic forced many churches to innovate with digital technologies and ways of being the church. Even as we anticipate a return to “normal,” some ways of being in ministry will be forever changed. Recognizing this, Wesley Theological Seminary has created the new Doctor of Ministry in Digital Ministry, with classes beginning May 2022. This 30-credit D.Min. track will refine ministerial skills and theological reflection of innovative leaders seeking to “lean in” to this transformation and embrace digital ministries.

This program will require a project seminar and two elective courses. For more information, please contact the Rev. Dr. Chip Aldridge at or go to

The UM Credit Union, Help for Struggling Churches
Until the end of 2021, we will take 1% off new unsecured fixed-rate church term loans (up to $100,000). That means your church could get financing for as little as 3.75% for 2 years!

We will also lower the rate on our church line of credit by 1% until the end of 2022 - that means a line of credit for only 4%!

Our hope is to make it easier for our churches receive needed repairs, upgrade sound systems, make investments in A/V and virtual meeting technology - or perhaps just provide enough money to weather the next bump in the road.

To get the ball rolling, you can call us at (866) 657-0004, or get more information and an application at

And of course, we still offer the FREE stewardship consulting, which churches can take advantage of at

Lots of new job openings at churches on the Elizabeth River District have been listed on the website. If your church has an employment opportunity or if you have placed a job opening and it is no longer needed, email Connie at

Check out the Job Openings on our District website!
e-Advocate, September 28, 2021
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