District News

Greater Washington News and Events ~ May 20, 2022

Posted by on


May 20 (3pm) – FY22 Nonprofit Security Grant Program Technical Assistance Webinar Series
FEMA Grant Programs Directorate (GPD), in partnership with the Department of Homeland Security Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, invites faith-based, community, and nonprofit organizations to participate in this webinar regarding the fiscal year (FY) 2022 Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP).  Register for the May 20 webinar or choose another date, all webinars will cover the same content.  Click here for more information -- https://www.fema.gov/grants/preparedness/nonprofit-security 

May 23 (application deadline) – Register for the Faithful Climate Action Fellowship 
Creation Justice Ministries is partnering with other organizations to do the third iteration of the Faithful Climate Action Fellowship. Are you or do you know a young person who is Christian, Jewish, or Muslim concerned about the climate crisis? Join us in exploring how our faith traditions can support and guide our climate activism. Young Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (18-26) in the United States (including U.S. territories) are invited to apply for the Faithful Climate Action Fellowship. Visit the website to learn more and submit an application.  This is an opportunity to serve as Fellows who will engage in 7 weeks of evening training to hone climate action skills. 

May 23 (7pm) – Mandatory Training on Annual Conference Virtual Voting
GNTV Media Ministry will be overseeing the technology of this online session.  Annual Conference registrants will receive the link by email to join the session.  

May 24 (8pm) – Raise Up Your Voice Against Racism Webinar
Please join us for an informative discussion on "Migration, Immigration, and Racism."  Register to attend -- https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeqCKrgg0eTOp94xfJZM5uzRrsa2y5wwxnI7DiBnImIVsy9hA/viewform 

May 25 (1pm) – Undoing the Doctrine: Developing a Theology of Repentance and Repair
Join us as we hear and learn from our speakers and each other ways to dismantle the doctrine.  From Popes to Presidents, the “Doctrine of Discovery” has empowered global leaders to change the lives of indigenous people throughout history. This 5-part series will explore the history and impact of the doctrine and the legacy of conquest that Christians have inherited to this day.  Register now for Session 5 and play-back previous sessions -- https://www.mfsaweb.org/stealing-the-earth 

May 26 (6:30pm) – Alzheimer's and Dementia Workshops:  Session 1 -- Understanding Alzheimer's and Dementia  
You are invited to attend one or all six sessions.  Register prior to each workshop by calling 800-272-3900 to receive the login instructions.  This event is hosted by the Alzheimer's Association and Asbury UMC (DC).  See the flyer for more details.

May 27 (3pm) – Deacon Coffee Chats
Rev. Leo Yates will lead a monthly Zoom Deacon coffee chat for BWC and Pen-Del Conferences; contact  with questions.  The group will meet every third Friday of the month.

June 25 (10am) -- SAVE THE DATE: Virtual People’s Supper Conference-wide Brave Conversation
During this virtual mini-people’s supper, we will have a brave conversation regarding how we can be disciples of Jesus Christ who love well across all dimensions of difference, be a church that embodies antiracism, and build beloved community. This virtual session is free and open to all. Registration will open on June 1.

June 30 (Deadline)  -- Fund Balance Report
This form must be completed through Arena by the Chairperson of the Finance Committee, Treasurer, or Pastor by June 30, 2022.  We did not include this report with Charge Conference material so that it could cover the fiscal year of January 1 – December 31.  If you need further assistance, contact the district office.   Visit the Finance resource webpage for additional information -- https://www.bwcumc.org/administration/finance/forms-and-reports/ 

5 Ways to Overcome Anxiety
Take a 1-minute break for self-care.  Learn five ways you can overcome anxiety when you feel fearful or stressed. This video from The United Methodist Church offers a guided space to pause so that you can find the road back to peace.

ResourceUMC.org:  Communications & Marketing Tools
These online tools support your local congregation’s communication online and in your local community.  Use MyPortal to customize your communication needs or follow this link to explore all the tools -- https://www.resourceumc.org/en/agencies/communications/communications-marketing 

Community Outreach Liaison/Grant Writer  
Hughes UMC in Wheaton (10700 Georgia Ave.) is looking for a Community Outreach Liaison/Grant Writer to engage the community to meet the needs of Silver Spring and Wheaton residents and to expand the partnership connection with available resources. Send a cover letter and resume to: the senior pastor or Linda French. Learn more



May 19 -- The Unfinished Church Podcast
The Unfinished Church is a new podcast focusing on the holy work of antiracism and is hosted by Bishops LaTrelle Easterling, Michael McKee, and Gregory Palmer.   Listen to the podcast with guest Nadia Bolz-Weber.  Learn more about the podcast and future guests here -- https://theunfinishedchurch.org/ 

May 21 (1:30pm) -- Confirmation Class Rally
Lovely Lane UMC, the Mother Church of Methodism, will hold a rally for all BWC confirmation classes. Rev. Wanda Duckett, the Baltimore Metropolitan District superintendent, will speak. Contact for questions and reservations.

May 27 (noon) -- A Faithful Response to the War in Ukraine 
Join a discussion with Rev. Oleg Starodubets, a district superintendent in Ukraine; Rev. Dr. Julia Starodubets, a pastor and medical doctor in Ukraine; and Rev. Bill Lovelace, a missionary who ministers with migrants in Norway. The trio will talk about "A Faithful Response to the War in Ukraine: It’s Impact and What Makes Peace?"  This conversation is supported by the BWC In Mission Together -- Eurasia Committee. Learn more and register -- https://arenaweb.bwcumc.org/default.aspx?page=3439&eventID=6158 


June 1-3 -- 238th Session of Baltimore-Washington Conference (Virtual)
Registration is open for the 238th Session of BWC. Click here to register. Clergy and lay members will meet virtually June 1-3 for this time of holy conferencing. There will be no registration fee this year. The conference will also be live-streamed for non-voting members who wish to watch the plenary sessions and worship services. The theme of this year’s session is “Persevere: in Hope, Faith & Joy” and the guiding Scripture passage is Hebrews 12:1-3.  Six resolutions and the proposed budget for Annual Conference can be found here -- https://www.bwcumc.org/events/2022-annual-conference/ 

June 12 --
 Peace with Justice Sunday
Peace With Justice Sunday (first Sunday after Pentecost) enables The United Methodist Church to have a voice in advocating for peace and justice through a broad spectrum of global programs.  Order offering envelopes.

June 25 (10am) -- SAVE THE DATE: Virtual People’s Supper Conference-wide Brave Conversation

During this virtual mini-people’s supper, we will have a brave conversation regarding how we can be disciples of Jesus Christ who love well across all dimensions of difference, be a church that embodies antiracism, and build beloved community. This virtual session is free and open to all. Registration will open on June 1.

June 25 -- Get Ready to Participate in Understanding Your Congregation & Community through Your ComparativeInsite Report

Your District Missional Action Planning (dMAP) team is working to ensure that your church has the data it needs to develop meaningful relationships and ministry with your community using the ComparativeInsite report from MissionInsite. One of the first steps in this process is to upload resident, active participants in order to run the ComparativeInsite report–the most ministry-impacting MissionInsite standard report. Click here for a step-by-step guide -- https://www.bwcumc.org/article/step-by-step-guide-to-creating-a-comparativeinsite-report/.  Registration will open soon.

June 30 (Deadline) -- Fund Balance Report
This form must be completed through Arena by the Chairperson of the Finance Committee, Treasurer, or Pastor by June 30, 2022.  We did not include this report with Charge Conference material so that it could cover the fiscal year of January 1 – December 31.  If you need further assistance, contact your district office.   Visit the Finance resource webpage for additional information -- https://www.bwcumc.org/administration/finance/forms-and-reports/ 


July 28 -- Earthkeepers
The General Board of Global Ministries is also seeking applications for the next virtual EarthKeepers training this summer.


SAVE THE DATE: August 23 – Church Conference Training
Join us on this webinar as we discuss what the Church Conference season will look like this year.   We encourage anyone who will be completing a church conference form to attend this training, whether they are new or they would like a refresher course.  Time to be determined.


Support Migrants Seeking Asylum
Your help needed to support migrants: The Baltimore-Washington area is receiving a new influx of migrants from the southern border. Conference leaders are noting a significant need for basic items and temporary shelter. They are also calling on United Methodists to urge congressional leaders to end Title 42. Learn more.

Worship Resources Commemorating Millions of COVID Deaths
This morning, the Centers for Disease Control reported that 995,747 people in the United States have died from COVID-19. As we mourn this tragedy, lived out in a million personal stories of loss and suffering, the Wellness and Missions Board of the Baltimore-Washington Conference is offering a resource for local churches. This webpage – at www.bwcumc.org/article/worship-resources-commemorating-one-million-covid-deaths/ – provides congregations with resources they can use to commemorate the unprecedented milestone in worship and other devotional settings. (We recognize these resources may seem a little early, but we wanted to ensure churches have adequate time as they plan their worship experiences.)

Subscribe to the UM News Daily Digest
United Methodist News keeps you informed about breaking news that affects the church. UM News also provides features, commentaries, and photos highlighting the work of the church in every corner of the globe. Subscribe to the weekly e-newsletter -- https://www.umnews.org/en/subscription-pages/umnews-daily-digest-subscribe

Mental Health Awareness Month

May is a time to raise awareness about the importance of mental health. Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through older adulthood. Learn what the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and National Alliance on Mental Illness are doing to raise awareness.

Replay the Stay or Go Webinar
For individuals and churches discerning their future, the Conference has a link to playback the Stay or Go webinar and has provided several resources. For more specific information, please contact Rev. Dawn M. Hand,  District Superintendent. 

Earthkeepers Podcast
As the BWC continues its ministry to care for the earth, we recommend the podcast “Earthkeepers: Loving Creation Across Generations,” with the Rev. Cary James and Caleb James.  


Canva is your free photo editor and video editor in one graphic design app!  Nonprofits can sign-up for a free Canva Pro account, all you need is your 501(c)(3) status from IRS.  Learn more and take a course to increase your proficiency.  Try the Canva tutorials --  https://www.canva.com/designschool/tutorials/ or take a Canva course --  https://www.canva.com/designschool/courses/ 

Re-entering Well Resources 
A number of resources are available to assist local churches with re-entry — https://www.bwcumc.org/article/re-entering-well/ 

Copyright questions?
UMC Support Legal Services offers a Comprehensive Guide to Understanding Copyrights for Your Ministry. See the guide.

COVID-19 Funeral Assistance

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought overwhelming grief to many families. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), an UMCOR partner, is dedicated to helping ease some of the financial stress and burden caused by the virus. Under the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021 and the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, FEMA is providing financial assistance for COVID-19 -related funeral expenses incurred after January 20, 2020. For more information about this assistance, visit COVID-19 Funeral Assistance | FEMA.gov or call (844) 684-6333. Get answers to frequently asked questions about the application process on FEMA’s Funeral Assistance FAQ page. Watch the video, Providing Financial Assistance for COVID-19-related Funeral Expenses or share this flyer.

Are You Being Called to Become a Certified Lay Minister?
New Certified Lay Minister Class Applications are now being accepted -- Applications for the next class of Certified Lay Minister, the Baltimore-Washington Conference Class of 2022-2024, are now being accepted. Go to the BWC website at https://www.bwcumc.org/ministries/certified-lay-ministers/ to learn more and see if you qualify and if you have met the pre-requisite requirements. Prospective CLM students must currently be a Certified Lay Servant or Certified Lay Speaker and must consult with their pastor before beginning the process. Additional information and frequently asked questions can be found on the website. Questions can be directed to Linda Flanagan, Conference Director of Lay Servant Ministries, at .

General Board of Higher Education Ministry Scholarships

The General Board of Higher Education scholarship application opens in January of each year. College students in the Baltimore Washington Conference are encouraged to apply for these scholarships. You can only submit one application per year where it will be screened for all possible eligible programs. You may indicate on the first page of the scholarship application which of the below listed programs you would most like to be considered for. Award amounts below are a general estimate of awards given. Scholarship programs are divided into three categories: General ScholarshipsRacial-Ethnic Scholarships, and Ministry as a Career Scholarships.

#BeUMC Toolkit for Local Churches 
A new #BeUMC online toolkit has launched to assist church leaders in creating engagement in their church communities. Resources include inspiring ideas and practical suggestions, worship and preaching aids, communication tools, informative research and more. The campaign focuses on disciple-making; belonging and inclusion; influence, connection and impact; and experiencing God through the UMC. Churches may access tools and details at Resource UMC.org/BeUMC

Elinor Thompson/ African American Cemetery Funding
Elinor Thompson works with the State of Maryland and wants to notify the BWC and its African American churches about grant funding that is available to African American cemeteries. She also wants to notify us that there is legislation coming up this session that will provide an additional $5 million for African American cemeteries in Maryland and wants our assistance with a survey they’re conducting.  View the survey. Ms. Thompson has worked closely with Sharp Street and Lovely Lane in the past.

Free COVID At Home Tests
If you haven't already ordered your free at home COVID tests from the government, visit https://www.covidtests.gov/.

Advocacy and Action, 2022 Mission Statement
Read the Advocacy and Action Mission Statement for the 2022 New Year, which outlines what we must do to continue our great work as Disciples of Jesus Christ, as well as ways for you to get involved in our work this year.

Training Tuesdays Archive – Learn at Your Own Pace
Training Tuesdays is an online training experience designed to inspire and equip local church leaders to connect more people with Jesus. Learn from experts from across the United Methodist denomination and come away with strategies to help you in your ministry work and to help your local church thrive.  Learn at your own pace and use the recordings for leadership training, on-boarding, and ministry development.
• Visit and bookmark the Training Tuesdays webpage to see what’s planned for 2022 -- https://www.bwcumc.org/events/training-tuesdays/
• Peruse the Training Tuesdays’ playlist, choose from 41 recordings -- https://tinyurl.com/ycybyt6h
• Replay the December SPRC webinar
• Next week, play-back the One Board presentation, the recording will be posted on the Training Tuesday webpage

Unified Funding Task Force
The UFT can assist congregations with grants for new ministry, new or renewed congregation development, and leader development. Visit the UFT webpage to learn what grants are available and how to apply -- https://www.bwcumc.org/administration/local-church-resources/unified-funding-task-force/

Serve as a Vaccine Location
The Maryland Governor's Vaccine Equity Task Force and the Maryland Department of Health are seeking help from communities of faith to ensure vaccine access to all people. Chaplain (Capt.) Amor Woolsey, of the Vaccine Equity Task Force, invites churches to offer up a space in their buildings for clinics to ensure those who want a vaccine can get one. The state will provide all three vaccines, including boosters; they also have pediatric vaccines available for those ages 5-11. For more information, contact Chaplain Woolsey at 808-218-3115 or

Subscribe to the E-Connection
Stay connected and subscribe to the BWC weekly newsletter -- https://www.bwcumc.org/news/submit-and-subscribe/

Free Downloads from Discipleship Ministries-Crash Course in Youth Ministry!
Congregations will want to look at the new Crash Courses in Youth Ministry. Each is loaded with practical tips and basic wisdom that you can read today and put into practice tomorrow. If you are a part-time or no-time (amazing volunteer!) youth worker, these crash courses are especially for you. Also, if you are a pastoral leader and find yourself leading youth ministry for the first time in a while, these crash courses are excellent refreshers and guides to help you recognize how the game has changed. Each Crash Courses in Youth Ministry eBook is between 3,000-6,000 words, meaning that you should be able to read and process the resource in just an hour or two. Each topic is approached with accessibility for the youth workers in mind, no matter if they are paid or volunteer. The materials are topically focused, and where possible includes a good dose of humor.  These eBooks are free to download. Just click the link and provide contact information so that Discipleship Ministries can continue to share resources and opportunities to support the youth ministry that you are called to lead. Topics include Recruiting Volunteers, Keeping Volunteers, Fundraising, Methodist Heritage and Beliefs, Trips and Retreats, and more.  Questions on how to use these resources? Contact Rev. Neal Christie at 

Zimbabwe Mission & Ministry Grants
The Baltimore-Washington Conference started its partnership and ZimVIM in 1997. With natural disasters and COVID-19 interrupting the Pastor’s School rhythm, we have re-directed the mission share allocation toward disaster response and now toward local congregation grants. If your local church has a record of building relationships, mission and ministry in Zimbabwe, then you are eligible to apply. Visit the Zimbabwe Global Partnership for more details.

Bible Study for Dementia Caregivers and Fellow Church Members
This Bible study written for dementia caregivers and their fellow church members is presented by author Elizabeth Shulman, D.Min., and Certified Nursing Assistant with over 30 years of experience in both parish and healthcare ministry. This study has been endorsed by retired United Methodist Bishop Kenneth Carder and recently listed as a #1 New Release on Amazon, Finding Sanctuary in the Midst of Alzheimer's (Morgan James Publishing, 2021) provides a valuable tool for churches seeking to provide support to caregivers in their congregations.  Finding Sanctuary in the Midst of Alzheimer's: A Spiritual Guide for Families Facing Dementia: Shulman, Elizabeth: 9781631954634: Amazon.com: Books

Sickle Cell Awareness 
Sickle Cell affects more than 100,000 Americans, most of African ancestry. Project SPIRIT Sickle Cell (PSSC) is a new, virtual community-based ministry founded by Rev. R. Lorraine Brown of Simpson UMC in Mt. Airy. The ministry offers one-on-one and group, non-denominational chaplain-led services at no cost to assist and support young adults who are in transition from pediatric to adult healthcare, discovering their personal sense of spirituality and navigating life challenges with sickle cell disease. For more information contact Rev. Brown   at 240-780-8986 and visit https://youtu.be/jDJ2qq4UK-Q

Creating a Narrative Budget:  The Story Behind the Numbers
The Wellness & Missions Board is pleased to share Discipleship Ministries' launch of a new self-paced course for local church leaders: Creating a Narrative Budget:  The Story Behind the Numbers. Through eight self-paced sessions, participants will learn the nuts and bolts of constructing a narrative budget. Visit the registration page for more information.  

Access the Church's Stats via Arena
Statistical data submitted via EZRA, the data collection system of the United Methodist Church, can now be viewed in Arena. And, Arena users can view 2017-2020 reports for their church if they serve in one or more of the following roles:
• Chair or President of a local church, district or conference committee 
• Church Pastor
• Church Administrator 

100 Man Mission to Support the NEJ United Methodist Men
Men’s Ministry Specialists will lead this effort and be supported by Conference Men who have a love for God and their fellow men. To do this 100 GENEROUS Men are needed to pledge to the NEJ, fifty cents per day, or $15.00 a month for 12 months, or a total of $180.00 per year. These men pledge to send their contribution MONTHLY to their UMM conference treasurer, who will forward one-half of these funds to the Northeastern Jurisdiction Treasurer, Mr. John Conklin. The conference will retain the other half for their expenses and to purchase education materials to support the NEJ efforts. Learn more here -- https://www.bwcumm.org/100man-prayerwalk

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 21, 2022.

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 

 New Certified Lay Minister
Class applications are now being accepted: Applications for the next class of Certified Lay Ministers, the Baltimore-Washington Conference Class of 2021-2023, are now being accepted. Visit the BWC website to learn more about the pre-requisite requirements. (Click "Learn More" under "Certified Lay Minister" for information and application package, as well as a pastor information package.) Prospective CLM students must currently be a Certified Lay Servant or Certified Lay Speaker. The application process includes meeting with one's pastor, church Staff-Parish Relations Committee, and the district superintendent before the July 1 deadline. The next class will start in September and is a two-year commitment. Questions can be directed to Linda Flanagan ( ), the Conference Director of Lay Servant Ministries. 

 Who Are We?  
This is 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/ 

  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 

BWC News
Find current BWC news and share your stories at https://www.bwcumc.org/news/ 

Church Resources
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/