This newsletter was sent on: 3/20/2008

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Kansas East Conference
4201 SW 15th Street
Topeka KS 66604

#229 - March 19, 2008

In this issue

Journey to Topeka

Celebrating Bridges to the Future pledges

Paying Bridges pledges

Church of the Resurrection excellence awards

Caring for Creation

Hymnal survey

Thinking about a new hymnal, second part

Dear Friends of the Kansas East Annual Conference:

Ron Williams, vice chairperson of the Bishop?s Round-up for Hunger Committee, sent the following message in appreciation for the Round-up:

One of the stories from the Bishop?s Round-up for Hunger products that has always tugged at my heart was the flood a few years ago around Cottonwood Falls. Rev. Ellie Foster was doing the managing of the church?s response to the flood victims. A woman came in to sign up for help for her family, and they had lost everything! As the woman began to leave, she noticed the health kits, and asked Ellie how much they cost. Ellie said "...nothing, take one for each member of your family." The woman was shocked that they were available without cost. At that time a little shampoo, soap, a towel and wash cloth meant the world to them. There was a bit of a tear in her eyes. Friends, those health kits came from Round-up.

Remember Roundup for Hunger will be at the fairgrounds in Lawrence Nov. 15. Come and bring food and other things like the health kit described above.

For a complete list of items needed at the Round-Up and for the contents of the kits--including health kits--go to

Gary Beach
Director of Connectional Ministries


Step by Step Journey to Topeka
A walk from Pittsburg to Topeka to call attention to the uninsured and underinsured will be April 23. The walk will be led by Lori and Ken Butts, who have worked for justice for more than 40 years. Ken is a retired Kansas East Conference pastor, currently serving at College Heights UMC in Pittsburg in retirement.

Download a schedule and introductory letter at

Learn more about the Journey to Topeka at

Bridges to the Future: Celebrating pledges
There is great appreciation for the pledges from churches in the Kansas East Conference. A list of churches with pledge amounts and notations of those churches meeting and exceeding tithes goals will be published in a newsletter at our campaign celebration at Annual Conference in June. The names of individual participants and their church affiliations also will be published in the newsletter, without individual gift amounts.

The Area Steering Committee of the Bridges to the Future campaign, the cabinet and leadership team have developed policies to guide the campaign, including expressions of appreciation toward participating churches and individuals.

Paying a Bridges to the Future pledge
When your church pays their pledge, please be sure to mark in the memo of the check ?Bridges to the Future? and enclose the Pledge Remittance Form, available at

All pledges are sent to the Kansas East Conference office in Topeka. Please do not include them in your church?s remittance. Make sure it is clear that this is a separate Bridges Pledge payment.

COR Leadership Institute invites applications for awards of excellence
Last year, the United Methodist Church of the Resurrection awarded three extraordinary churches with the Award for Excellence. The churches' stories and noteworthy work of their leaders were recognized at the Leadership Institute last fall. Each of these churches had applied leadership principles and ideas and experienced significant growth in both the width and depth of their ministries.

Awards will be given to three additional churches at the 2008 Leadership Institute in October.

These churches will be chosen in the early summer, based upon applications received this spring. The award consists of a $1,000 prize and five complimentary registrations for the 2008 Leadership Institute.

Pastors, lay persons and conference officials are encouraged to nominate churches for this award up to May 16.

For eligibility requirements and an application form, visit

Caring for Creation impacts attendees
?I never before realized that it takes five bottles of water to produce one bottle of bottled water,? exclaimed Rev. Michael Mattox, senior pastor at First United Methodist Church in Little Rock, at the end of a Caring for Creation Conference, March 7-9, at Mount Sequoyah Retreat Center in Fayetteville. More than 120 participants from Arkansas and surrounding states learned about U.S. consumption, starting a green team at church, rain gardens, compost, ecological footprints, recycling, community food initiatives, political advocacy and biblical basis for creation care.

Among other statistics, they learned that products purchased by consumers can require 30 times their weight and value in raw materials, manufacturing, processing, packaging, shipping and distribution.


New GBOD hymnal survey now available
The General Board of Discipleship wants to know what you think about our current hymnal, ?The United Methodist Hymnal,? 1989, and some common practices related to congregational worship and singing.

Participate in a survey open to all United Methodists--pastors, musicians, laity, children, youth and adults, and the responses will be used in planning future resources in the areas of congregational worship and music.

The survey consists of approximately 35 simple statements related to the hymnal, worship and congregational singing. You will be asked to register your agreement or disagreement with each statement by clicking on a button. The entire survey should take no more than 15 minutes to complete.

Once you begin the survey, you must complete it in one session. You're not allowed to save the survey and return later. In order to maintain the integrity of the survey, only one response per computer will be accepted.

The survey will be available until March 30.

To take the survey, go to

Thinking About a New Hymnal #2
It is obvious that the day when a single official denominational hymnal could meet the needs of the UMC is long past. Our church is so large, so diverse in so many ways--language, culture, heritage, worship practice, liturgy, geography, and not least of all, musical style--that a single hymnal simply cannot serve us all. Today, we have three official UMC hymnals and numerous supplemental songbooks.

Find out more at,823.

Featured Events

Dance theater to perform at Baker
City in Motion Dance Theater will perform March 26 at Rice Auditorium as part of Baker University?s Artist and Lecture Series. Admission is $15 for adults and $10 for youths.

Get the details at

Register now for SCJ Volunteer Work Week
The SCJ Volunteer Work Week will be March 31-April 4 at Mount Sequoyah in Fayetteville, Ark.

Lodging is provided at no cost in appreciation of your work at Mount Sequoyah. There is a per person charge of $89 to cover the cost of meals. It will be a great week of faith in action. Donations will be accepted for materials and supplies.

Time will be spent repairing buildings, cleaning windows, sealing decks and making the grounds beautiful. Landscaping, carpentry, drywall, maintenance, cleaning and painting skills will be put to good use. This year, there is a special need for sewing machines and sewers.

For more information, click on the ?SCJ Work Week? link at

Native American Ministries Sunday
Native American Ministries Sunday is one of Six Special Sundays designated by the General Church. This year the date designated is April 6.

Last year, 118 Kansas East Conference churches celebrated and honored Native Americans Ministries by giving $11, 871.79 to this offering. Fifty percent of that amount went to the General Church providing scholarships for Native American seminarians and 50 percent stayed in the Kansas East Conference to nurture and support Native American Ministries.

The Conference Committee on Native American Ministries is elected by the Annual Conference and is responsible for the distribution of the Native American Ministries Sunday offering, coordinating the promotion of Native American Ministries Sunday and monitoring Native American ministries within the conference.

Local churches who gave to this offering in the year 2007:

  • Supported Native American Ministries in Kansas East by enriching, encouraging and nurturing Native students attending Haskell Indian Nations University
  • Provided an ongoing food bank utilized by 80 percent native persons
  • Strengthened the unity and fellowship on the Kickapoo reservation by the funding of its Adult Bible Studies curriculum
  • Assisted in supporting native leadership to the Faith Indian Fellowship, a Native American urban ministry

Celebrating Native American Ministries Sunday does not have to be on the designated date, but can be celebrated at a time more convenient.

For more information, go to or contact Rev. Don Anderson at revdona@yahoo,com or Rev. Julienne Judd at

Bishops' Week 2008
Mount Sequoyah will host Bishops? Week 2008: Ministry in Hard Places June 18-21. Keynote speakers will include Rev. Cecil Williams, founder and minister of Liberation of Glide Memorial UMC in San Francisco, and Rev. Rudy Rasmus, senior pastor of St. Johns UMC in Houston.

For more information, click on the ?Bishops? Week? link at

Event Calendar

Visit the Conference Calendar for additional information and events not listed below.

March 2008

Safe and Sacred Spaces Training - Council Grove UMC
March 25

Christian Educators Family Reunion
March 27-28

Lay speaking seminar
March 28-29

Safe and Sacred Spaces Worker Training - Topeka
March 29

April 2008

Spiritual Spendover
April 4-5

Passing on the Faith: Dwelling Together as Strangers, Hosts and Guests
April 5

Dinner theater evening
April 5

Native American Ministries Sunday with offering
April 6

The Emergent Church for the Existing Church Conference
April 8-10

Healthy Congregations Retreat
April 11-12

Faithfully Fit Forever leader training
April 12

Local church historians' workshop
April 12

Safe and Sacred Spaces Worker Training - Leawood
April 12

Sexual Ethics Quadrennial Update
April 12

Communications Staff

Lisa Elliott Diehl
Area Director

Susan Cooper
Associate Director
Beverly Fanestil
Britt Bradley
Electronic Media Specialist

Area Communications Office, 9440 E Boston, Suite 110, Wichita KS 67207
866-915-3638 or 316-684-3638; Fax: 316-684-0044