Epiphany Greetings, Sage District!

It's a new year! In hopes you can welcome in 2018 with your heart "strangely warmed," and excited about the possibilities in this new set of 12 months.   

-Terri Bartish, Sage District Administrative Assistant

This Month's issue offers the following articles:

Speaking from the Heart: January, 2018
Where is your District Superintendent in January?
Inspiring Generosity Stewardship Event Offered February 10
Northwest Leadership Institute March 8-9, Boise First
 Job Posting: LGBTQ Advocacy Coordinator
Certified Lay Minister Training Opportunities
And, finally, It's Year-End Report Time!

Speaking from the Heart: January, 2018

We have a few more days of Christmas, liturgically, even though the world has left Christmas behind and has moved onto the next holiday.  I have packed away the Christmas decorations. 

We anticipate and wait, the event happens, and we move on without lingering.   It’s the way it is….then comes Epiphany, reminding us of the light and manifestation of God in the world.  And God knows, we live in a world that needs Light, needs saving:  justice, peace, transformation, deep systemic change.  It leaves me wondering what 2018 will bring because 2017 was a tough year.

I see a world that needs Jesus to be born again and again, and maybe more of us will get the message.   Maybe this time we will lay down our greed, intolerance, injustice, and fears and receive from the Prince of Peace a new heart.   We tell the story of Jesus.  We hear the story.  We sing the story.  But do we truly receive and live the story?   Is your church a place where you can go to lay down what troubles you and know that having done so there is absolutely no chance that God will leave you unchanged?  Isn’t this what the world needs?  I know it is what I need. 

This is what I did at church on Christmas Eve.  I lit a candle, I sang “Silent Night.”  I imagine you did the same.  I did this believing in a God who wants to be known and received by us, who came as a vulnerable, dependent baby, as one of us.  Yet, it is hard for us to truly know and receive God when we are busy alternating between being right and feeling bad.  We can’t hold onto our stuff with one hand and reach for Jesus with the other.  We need to lay our troubles and burdens down and believe that when we do there is absolutely no chance that God will leave us unchanged.   That’s the message I want to go with into 2018.  Let us be people changed by God because in the tender compassion of God, we were sent a savior who showed us how to love and live.

Gwen Drake

Where is your District Superintendent in January?

Jan. 8 - 10 — Cabinet (PNW Conference Office, Des Moines WA)
Jan. 11 — Meetings in Portland
Jan. 18 — Sessions Meeting and Cabinet/ BOM Meeting in Portland
Jan. 21 — Preaching at Sweet and Emmett UMC
Jan. 27 — Western Jurisdictional Meeting in San Diego

Grace Duddy & Charles Lane

Inspiring Generosity Stewardship Event Offered February 10

Stewardship is our answer to God for the gifts given to us. We give back from the abundance of life that God has given us. When we do so with love, grace, and gratitude it strengthens our relationship to God and helps us build the kingdom of God - right here on earth. And here's the good news. Giving and stewardship can be fun and joyful!

This day-long event will be held at Tigard United Methodist Church, and will feature Rev. Charles "Chick" Lane, the author of Ask, Thank, Tell: Embracing Stewardship and Grace Duddy, author of Embracing Stewardship (pictured above). Here is more information, and an opportunity to register.

Northwest Leadership Institute March 8-9, Boise First

When the leader grows, the organization grows. Join us this March in Boise at the Cathedral of the Rockies for a few days designed to inspire, strengthen, equip and renew church leadership teams. NLI is one of the largest mainline leadership events in the Northwest. This year the theme is Re-formation. Semper reformanda ("always reforming") is one of the enduring slogans often associated with the Protestant Reformation. Here we are, 500 years later, reforming again. Join us and bring a team as we learn together. 

This year's NLI features noted author and theologian Brian McLaren. You can learn more about the conference and register here



Job Posting: LGBTQ Advocacy Coordinator

The Oregon-Idaho Annual Conference is hiring a new, part-time position (20 hour/week) to help the annual conference further its commitment to creating an environment of full inclusion within the life of our church. The focus of this position is to help the Oregon-Idaho Annual Conference and our local churches become more welcoming and fully inclusive of all people. The one-year position is funded with grant support from The Collins Foundation. The coordinator will provide resourcing support and coordination to several projects related to inclusion and welcome.

Candidates should show a strong commitment to, and experience with, matters of inclusion within the life of the church; organizational systems understanding; ability to work as a part of a team; and ability to prioritize work demands from competing needs and utilize appropriate resources involved in different settings. To see the full description, follow this link.

Certified Lay Minister Training Opportunities

There are several training opportunities developing on the calendar. They include:

CLM Intensive Weekend
March 16-17, 2018
Beginning 1 pm. on March 16, concluding with dinner on March 17.
Alton Collins Retreat Center
$150 per person double occupancy (training fee, lodging and meals)
$200 per person single occupancy
Cycle C Spring 2018 —
Leadership in the Wesleyan Way:  Evangelism and Mission Field Engagement
Boise — April 21, 2018; 9 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Fee:  $50
Cycle D Late Spring 2018 —
Leadership in the Wesleyan Way:  Spiritual Formation and Disciple Making
Boise—June 2, 2018; 9 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. 
Fee:  $50
For more information (and to learn how to register) contact:  Rev. David Nieda at or Hollie Swanson at 

And, finally, It's Year-End Report Time!

The links are open to all year-end reports, including the Ezra statistical reports which are due January 31.  Our Conference Statistician, Ted Wimer, wrote a nice introductory explanation which you can read here to help you get started.  It's a new quadrennium, so there are a few changes this year in the forms. Detailed instructions, and all other year-end reports can be found here, on the Oregon-Idaho Conference website.  Thanks in advance for taking care of these elements of connection.

Sage District Office of the Oregon-Idaho Annual Conference
1505 SW 18th Ave, Portland OR 97201(503) 802-9225 ~