Visit the Maryland vaccination webpage at covidvax.maryland.gov to find a provider near you by zip code -- https://coronavirus.maryland.gov/pages/vaccine
Bishop Appoints Rev. Dawn Hand as the New Central Maryland DS starting July 1
February 16 (7pm) – Training Tuesday Webinar: Introducing the Federal Security Grant Programs
The Federal Emergency Management Association will announce in mid-February the details of this year’s Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP). These grants are available to all churches to invest in additional security measures to safeguard their places of worship. Once the FEMA announcement is made, we believe all applications for this year’s grants will be required before the end of March.
February 17 – Ash Wednesday
Discipleship Ministries has prepared a list of tips to help you prepare for Ash Wednesday during COVID-19 -- https://www.umcdiscipleship.org/articles/tips-for-ash-wednesday-during-covid-19
February 17 – Lent Begins
- Lenten Renewal – A Call from Bishop Easterling -- http://campaign.r20.constantcontact.com/render?m=1116130639892&ca=8e797a88-9959-46a2-98e6-8f030a36ba53
- Reclaiming and Living Covenant -- this Lenten resource explores ideas about social and racial justice through the lens of the Bible and the United Methodist Social Principles. It contains a wealth of information for learning, reflection, and action and makes a perfect online study for you and your church during Lent. Learn more -- https://www.bwcumc.org/article/reclaiming-and-living-covenant/
- Created to Love -- this Lenten devotional is a seven-week resource that offers opportunities for spiritual renewal. It includes Scripture readings, sermonic excerpts from Bishop LaTrelle Easterling, denominational resources, music, and centering prayers. Learn more -- https://www.bwcumc.org/createdtolove/
- Listening with All Your Heart, Soul, Strength, and Mind -- is a free Lenten resources created by Living Compass. Learn more -- https://www.livingcompass.org/lent
February 18 (7pm) – 7th Racial Justice Team Gathering
The BWC is committed to hearing from diverse voices and cultivating a community committed to putting their faith to action in the areas of racial justice. If you are interested in learning more or becoming a member of the Racial Justice team. Join the next Zoom meeting, get details here -- https://www.bwcumc.org/event/1974365-2021-02-18-7th-racial-justice-team-gathering/
February 23 (7pm) – Training Tuesday Webinar: Managing Conflict in a Sea of Change
Resolving church conflict begins with the understanding that the parties involved already are capable of creating the best solution. Develop the tools to assess the conflict, discover options, and empower dialogue through informed and effective conversations. Learn how to get those conversations going and how to stay out of the middle!
February 25 (6pm) – Mapping a Path to Racial Justice Group
This supper series is designed to help persons break down barriers and deepen trust and understanding of one another across lines of difference of race and identity. Mark your calendar for future sessions on March 25, April 22, May 27, and June 24. Sign-up here -- https://www.bwcumc.org/event/1971444-2021-02-25-mapping-a-path-to-racial-justice-group/
February 27 (2pm) – New People in New Places
This is a yearlong experience that includes live webinar training, independent team learning, and an ongoing cohort to help you set goals and provide encouragement. The experience will be led by Discipleship Ministries and Michael Moynagh of Fresh Expressions in the Church of England, and the Rev. Michael Beck, a United Methodist pastor leading the Fresh Expressions movement in the United States. The regular cost is $300 a team; however, there is no cost for local churches in the BWC if they contact the Rev. Bill Brown ( ) to receive a special code that can be used during registration. Register now -- https://store.umcdiscipleship.org/product/new-people-new-places/?mc_cid=dd0d3b6e77&mc_eid=64fece61c3
Black History Month
February is Black History Month, a time to reflect on the history of black Americans and to honor the individuals and groups who have worked tirelessly toward racial justice.
- The BWC website offers many resources and suggestions for celebrating Black History Month all month long -- https://www.bwcumc.org/article/ideas-for-celebrating-black-history-month-with-your-congregation-and-community/
- Visit Discipleship Ministries for worship resources -- https://www.umcdiscipleship.org/equipping-leaders/african-american
American Heart Month
February is American Heart Month, a time to raise awareness about a heart-healthy lifestyle and to urge those around you to prevent heart disease.
- For ideas about how to share this information with others, visit the Abundant Health resource on the Conference website -- https://www.bwcumc.org/article/abundant-health-ministry-plan-february/#AHM
- For additional ideas about how to share this information with your congregation and local community. Visit #GoRed - https://www.goredforwomen.org/en
Disability Awareness Sunday
Churches within the Baltimore-Washington Conference are invited to observe Disability Awareness Sunday during the month of February. The conference's Committee on Disability Concerns encourages churches to use the following Scripture passages on this special Sunday: Isaiah 53:1-5 and Mark 2:3-11. See a complete order of worship for the observance -- https://umcdmc.org/worship/disability-sunday-order-of-worship/. The committee also recommends viewing the eight-minute PBS broadcast (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bElXJ63FQSQ) on ways to reach out during the pandemic and how to provide respite to caregivers.
March 1 – Deadline for Submitting Statistical Reports
More information about the Statistical Reports can be found here (https://www.bwcumc.org/administration/finance/statistical-reports/). In addition, church leaders will want to review the recently revised 2020 EZRA Table Instructions, which contains updated guidance regarding worship attendance and COVID-19 grants/relief.
March 16 (9:30am) – Healing from Woundedness
All clergy are invited to a retreat led by R. Lorraine Brown and Andy Peck-McClain who will explore how pastors can acknowledge the ways God has been a part of healing their wounds. The content will draw on ideas from Henri Nouwen, Reesma Menakem and Flora Slosson Wuellner, with guided prayers and body practices. Register by March 12 -- https://arenaweb.bwcumc.org/default.aspx?page=3452&event=5927
Beginning April 26 – Equity 2.0 - A SPACES Project
You are invited, and all members of the Baltimore-Washington Conference to join the EQ 2.0 Cohort to help co-create a vision of a world as it should be. A world rooted in belonging without racial bias and different forms of othering. Equity 2.0 seeks to build community and provide participants with tools and accountability structures to become an IDEA (Inclusive, Diverse, Equitable, and Antiracist) leader, using evidence-based strategies for building beloved communities. If you'd like to register or learn more, please refer to the following:
- Access to Our Registration Form
- The Informational Page & Video Introduction
- For additional questions, email Jodi Iyamu at
BWC's Racial Justice Committee has been committed to shining a light on systemic racism within our churches and within our society at large. We Rise United Bi-Weekly Prayer Call – We all must look to God for help, guidance, and support during this time and as we journey forward towards reaching the goal of being an antiracist Church, let's lift our voices and be heard so that together, We Rise United. To join the prayer call and for more information, visit https://www.bwcumc.org/event/1946656-2021-02-03-we-rise-united-prayer-call/. The prayer call is held the first and third Wednesday every month until December 16, 2021.
Prayer in a Time of National Crisis – In this prayer from The United Methodist Church's Book of Worship, 517, we seek God's direction and enlightenment for our nation as it experiences turmoil and conflict. Take a moment to say and reflect upon the prayer, and then share it with your congregation -- https://www.umc.org/en/content/prayer-in-time-of-national-crisis?utm_source=thesource&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=resourceumc&utm_content=01/26/21paid
Lay Servant Ministries Grace Period Extended – The Conference Committee on Lay Servant Ministries has extended the grace period begun in 2020 for those who cannot take necessary courses during the COVID 19 pandemic. Download the form.
Download a 12-month schedule of Health & Wellness topics to keep your congregation and community safe and well year round.
Free 2021 Worship Bundle Package – Download the Discipleship Ministries’ 2021 Worship and Music Planning Calendar and the 2021 Revised Common Lectionary Sundays and Special Days Calendar -- https://store.umcdiscipleship.org/product/2021-worship-planning-bundle/
Randolph-Macon College Pre-Ministerial Program for Youth Discerning Call to Ministry
Do you know a bright, inquisitive high school senior who is sensing a call to ministry? Randolph-Macon is committed to nurturing young adults who are sensing a call to Christian vocation. Weekly meetings allow students to more deeply discern their calling prior to selecting a seminary and to gain valuable leadership experiences in ministry during the undergraduate years. Find out more and apply at: http://www.rmc.edu/academics/pre-ministerial. Applications are due Feb 8, 2021.
During Bishop LaTrelle Easterling's conversations on the regions, United Methodist leaders shared questions and ideas. Those resources have been gathered for your information.
Online Worship: As churches improve their abilities to conduct hybrid worship -- in-person and online --the following platforms may prove helpful:
• Church Online Platform
• Church Streaming.TV
• Sermon by Phone
Who Are We? An 18-week small group journey from head to heart explores our identity as children of God, United Methodists, and the people of the Baltimore-Washington Conference. This study is an outstanding resource for churches seeking to grow deeper in their understanding of identity, faith, and discipleship. See the Study and begin your exploration of "Who Are We?" -- https://www.bwcumc.org/resources/who-are-we/
During Bishop Easterling's conversations on the region's last week, several books were recommended by people throughout the Conference that can be used for personal
study, book groups, or small-group conversations. They include:
- America's Original Sin by Jim Wallis
- Beyond Racial Gridlock: Embracing Mutual Responsibility by George Yancey
- Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates
- Black and White: Disrupting Racism One Friendship at a Time by Teesha Hadra and John Hambrick
- Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson
- The Cross and the Lynching Tree by James H. Cone
- How to Be an AntiRacist by Ibram X. Kendi
- Jesus and the Disinherited by Howard Thurman
- Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
- The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander
- Same Kind of Different as Me by Ron Hall
- Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America by Ibram X. Kendi
- Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man by Emmanuel Acho
The next annual session of the Baltimore-Washington Conference will be held Oct 25-27, 2021.
Improving Your Church's Web Presence
Sometimes we're overwhelmed by all that's involved in (re)building or maintaining a church website. Because a site requires a mix of time and skills, it's hard to know
where to begin. In part one of three screencast sessions, you'll learn how to improve your web presence by identifying the ministry needs and the multiple audiences
served by your church's website. Take the first step -- https://www.resourceumc.org/en/content/improving-your-churchs-web-presence-part-1
Re-Entering Well Resources
• Find the Re-Entering Well Guidelines (https://www.bwcumc.org/article/re-entering-well-guidelines/)
• View the Re-Entering tip sheets (https://www.bwcumc.org/article/re-entering-well/)
• Find current BWC news and share your stories at https://www.bwcumc.org/news/
• Where do you go to get a grant or loan for your church? There are resources to help you and your church. Visit https://www.bwcumc.org/administration/local-church-resources/
• A number of resources are available to assist local churches in their response to the Coronavirus—https://www.bwcumc.org/article/coronavirus-resources/