This newsletter was sent on: 5/7/2008

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4201 SW 15th Street
Topeka KS 66604

Communique #236 - May 8, 2008

Dear Friends of the Kansas East Conference,

While the General Conference of the global United Methodist Church has already passed, the Kansas East Conference is still looking ahead to its Annual Conference in June. The Communique will have updates and information about Annual Conference. Or, you can check l the conference website at

If you missed out on General Conference news, you can still find links to stories and articles at

Gary Beach
Director of Connectional Ministries

Annual Conference News

Healthy Lifestyles Committee Proposal Page Correction
We have found there is an error in the pre-conference workbook in Section D, page 9. This page should be the Healthy Lifestyles Committee Proposal.

The online workbook has been corrected, and this single page can be downloaded at This page also will be available in the registration packet at Annual Conference.

Display spaces full
At this time, all of the available display spaces at Annual Conference have been filled. If you believe you have signed up for a space but have not received confirmation, please e-mail by May 9.

Join the Annual Conference Choir
The Conference Choir will sing during Ordination Service June 6. Practice will start at 6 p.m. Any choirs, members of annual conference or other individuals wanting to participate in the conference choir should contact choir director Sara Wentz at or 785-841-8500.

For more information, go to

Health Walk
Don't forget to sign up for the Second Annual Kansas East Conference Bishop's Body-Mind-Spirit Walk when registering for Annual Conference. Participants will gather with the bishop June 5 for devotions at 6 a.m. at the arbor south of Harter Dining Hall. The walk will begin at 6:15. There is a $5 fee for the walk.

Annual Conference reminders
Early-bird registration for Annual Conference ends May 15.

Media presentations and/or promotional information for upcoming events be shown on the screen during Annual Conference must be sent to Nancy Kollhoff at by May 16. Presentation tips are now available on the Kansas East Conference website at

Printed materials to promote upcoming events or other materials for the registration packet must be sent to Kay Inman, Kansas East Conference, P.O. Box 4187, Topeka KS 66604, by May 16.


UMCOR Provides Help to Myanmar
Cyclone Nargis tore through Myanmar (Burma) May 2 with unexpected fury, causing a tidal surge that swept inland that devastated Myanmar's most populated regions leaving homes and businesses flattened and families forever changed.

Satellite images reveal extensive damage along the entire coastal plain. Current reports place the death toll at more than 22,000, with another 40,000 missing.

The United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) is responding to the widespread need in Myanmar. Working through partners such as Church World Service, one of the few agencies with permits to work in Myanmar, allows UMCOR to respond to disasters in some of the world's most remote places. The international community is working to open up relationships between the US and Myanmar so that more assistance can be provided to survivors.

Find out more and how to help at

Hymns and resources after the cyclone
The General Board of Discipleship's website has a list of appropriate hymns and worship resources following the massive devastation of the recent Southeast Asia cyclone at

UMs receive $5 million grant to help end child-malaria deaths
As it commemorates World Malaria Day, the United Methodist Church announced April 25 at General Conference that it will receive a $5 million grant from the United Nations Foundation, with support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, to help eliminate malaria and other diseases of poverty.

Learn more at

A new hymnal
Three hours into the evening session of General Conference in Fort Worth, Texas, on April 28, 2008, the conference received the recommendation of the legislative committee to approve the revision of the 1989 United Methodist Hymnal. Following a brief but spirited debate, the proposal was approved by a margin of 57 percent - 43 percent.

"A New Hymnal ? Now What?" reviews the details of what will happen next. Read the article at,1003.

Online bill payment
The Kansas East Conference office has been receiving many online bill payments. However, the electronic checks cannot be processed without indication of the purpose of the payment. Please remember to include a note in the "Memo" section of such online payments (i.e. - "2000 Member Club," "Star Throwers" or "Bridges to the Future"), or the payment cannot be processed. Without a designation, the payment will be deposited in the general reserves of the conference.

Blog discusses young children issues
Melanie Gordon, director of children's ministries for the General Board of Discipleship, has started a blog for people who care for and care about young children. It offers a variety of topics that will be useful for individuals and church communities.

The first post continues a conversation with people in children's ministries who were looking for ideas for parents of newborns, so it is much longer than future posts.

Read the blog at

?Judy's Journey'
Read the latest from missionary Judy Atwood at

Alban Institute's featured resources
Holy Conversations: Strategic Planning as a Spiritual Practice for Congregations by Gil Rendle and Alice Mann

Transforming Church Boards into Communities of Spiritual Leaders by Charles M. Olsen

Foods Resource Bank newsletter
The Foods Resource Bank works on behalf of 15 mainline Christian denominations or their agencies to mobilize and increase the resources needed to support smallholder, agricultural food-security programs in some of the world's poorest villages. In the U.S., community "growing projects" raise a crop or other marketable resource, monetize it and make the proceeds available to FRB.

Their spring newsletter features a story about rainwater collection and storage in Kenya. Download the newsletter at

Hymns and Songs for Confirmation and Reaffirmation,823

New classifieds
Check out the latest classifieds at

Featured Events

Navaho Mission Team orientation meeting May 10
Builders, electricians, plumbers, teachers, cooks, nurses and worship leaders are needed for a mission team traveling to Window Rock, Arizona. The trip will take place June 15-25, 2008, but the team orientation meeting is scheduled for this Saturday, May 10, at the Nortonville UMC.

Get more information at

Volunteers needed
Volunteers are currently needed in response to last spring's flooding. Many of the project sites are located around Iola with projects starting in Coffeyville and Independence soon. Current projects include light carpentry, insulation, sheetrock hanging and finishing, plumbing and electrical work.

Work dates for which teams or individuals can sign up are:

  • May 14-16
  • May 19-24
  • May 26-30

To schedule a work day(s) or for additional information Roger can be reached at 785-331-8272 or call Julie Pohl at 785-989-3237 or 816-390-0324.

Peace with Justice Sunday
On May 18, United Methodists will celebrate Peace with Justice Sunday by receiving a special offering. The offering enables the denomination's voice in advocating for peace and justice at home and around the world.

Peace with Justice Sunday gifts empower compassionate people to advocate for human rights, buy fair-trade products, care for the environment, demonstrate for important causes, eradicate poverty, feed the hungry, mediate conflict provide health care, seek affordable housing and model nonviolence.

For more information and links to resources, go to

Disaster Response training available
The next date for Basic Disaster Response Training is scheduled for May 31 at Lawrence First UMC, West Campus. The next training will be June 28th at Pleasant Hill UMC.

These trainings will begin at 9:00 AM and end by 3:00 PM. To register, call or e-mail: Julie at 785-989-3237 or

?Smart Marriages - Happy Families'
The "Smart Marriages - Happy Families" conference will be July 2-5 in San Francisco. The early-bird registration deadline is May 12.

Find out more at

Christian mission school
The Cooperative School of Christian Mission will be July 10-12 at Washburn University in Topeka.

For more information, go to

SCJ archivists' convocation
The Texas Conference's Commission on Archives and History is sponsoring the South Central Jurisdiction Convocation of Archivists July 11-12 in Jacksonville, Texas.

Local church historians will be able to learn what to keep, what to eliminate and basic archiving tasks such as selecting appropriate equipment and materials, determining appropriate storage locations and more.

Download a registration flier with more information at

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