October 25, 2018

Dear Reader,

Who is my neighbor? What is my community? How do you live with an active volcano in your neighborhood?

These are all questions that you'll find discussed, if not answered, in this week's UM Connector.
Greg Nelson, Director of Communications


Great Spirit comes from Wilshire roots

Great Spirit Logo

When a name no longer fits the identity of a church, it may just have to change. This is what the people now called Great Spirit United Methodist Church, formerly Wilshire Native American Fellowship located at Wilshire United Methodist Church, have discovered and formalized in a naming ceremony. The naming ceremony represented hard work and deep listening in the community and ultimately affirmed the values expressed by elders and leaders in the community. Those values have been expressed by the community as Love, Tradition, Spirituality, and Connection.

Read more on the conference website.

Get on the list for CrossOver

Love on the move ...

Bishop Elaine Stanovsky has invited the Greater Northwest Area to join her in studying Brian McLaren’s book “We Make the Road by Walking” over a 12 month period, beginning in Advent. Each week a blog post will provide insight into the CrossOver journey for The United Methodist Church, and the study.
You can sign up to receive the blog each week by mail, and enjoy some “pre-study” posts now. Sign-up on the GreaterNW Area website and read early posts from members of the Greater Northwest Area cabinet online. This week’s blog is from Rich Lang, SeaTac Missional District Superintendent.

Conference sponsors intern program

Voices project logo

For the second year the Oregon-Idaho Conference will sponsor The Voices Project, a part-time paid summer internship designed to give leaders of color training and exposure to high-level leadership principles and understanding. The program is located in Portland, Oregon.
The project seeks to build high-level leadership principles and culturally responsive community engagement in the interns. The program components include blogging, event coordination, interviewing, public speaking, strategic framework for listening, collaboration and mobilizing. Learn more and share with others by downloading an information sheet, or contact Dr. Leroy Barber, Co-Founder of the Voices Project and Director of Innovation UMC Greater Northwest at


Welcoming new neighbors

When the Klamath Falls United Methodist Church got a new neighbor, they made sure to offer a warm welcome! When Holiday Market moved in across the street the church took out ads in the local paper welcoming them, bought digital advertising, and passed out welcome flyers.
The campaign had two aims in mind according to Pastor Phil Airhart, “First was to do something to welcome this new business in the spirit of hospitality and second to let our community know that we want to be a welcoming and transformational presence here where God has planted us.”
You can contact Airhart at for more information.

ERT Teams head for North Carolina

Three back-to-back Early Response Teams are preparing now for week-long missions to Beaufort, NC (Oct 28 - Nov. 18) to support relief efforts helping people impacted by Hurricane Florence.
The joint effort is being led by members from the PNW and OR-ID Conferences with other team members coming from other conferences across the Western Jurisdiction. Read a story about the teams on the Pacific Northwest Conference website.

Donations to support ERT teams can be made through your local church (marked OR-ID ERT Teams) or by mailing checks directly to the conference office at 1505 SW 18th Ave., Portland, OR, 97201.

Inspiring Generosity

In this week's installment of Inspiring Generosity, Cesie Delve Scheurmann shares what she's learned about fund raising through social media.
Is a Facebook fundraiser right for you? Or for your church?


Sawtooth Camp Director
Oregon-Idaho Camp and Retreat Ministries is hiring a director for Sawtooth Camp.  Sawtooth Camp is a beautiful, secluded 120-acre site high in a mountain valley approximately an hour north of Fairfield, Idaho. 

Read more on the website.


Love of Christ extends to immigrants living on street

MEXICALI, Mexico (UMNS) — Plaza Mariachi is not the family-friendly place it once was. But the plaza is still a place where Christians are offering food for the bodies and souls of immigrants living in deplorable conditions.

Read the rest of this United Methodist News Service story.

Bishop Ough prays for unified church

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — Bishop Bruce Ough of the Dakotas-Minnesota Episcopal Area was president of the Council of Bishops during the 2016 General Conference that authorized the Commission on a Way Forward. He shared his thoughts on the process and prayers for the church with UM News as part of "Seeing a Way Forward," a video series featuring different perspectives of church leaders on the work of the Commission on a Way Forward.

Read the rest of this United Methodist News Service story.

Bishop is first AU grad to chair university's board

MUTARE, Zimbabwe (UMNS) — Bishop Mande Muyombo, already the first Africa University graduate elected as bishop, is now the first graduate to chair the school's board of directors.

Read the rest of this United Methodist News Service story.

Volcano takes homes, not faith

HILO, Hawaii (UMNS) — Hilo United Methodist Church has helped three church families who lost their homes during the eruption of the Kilauea Volcano. The Rev. Thomas Kim has the story.

Read the rest of this United Methodist News Service story.

Planting seeds for deaf ministries

PASADENA, Md. — United Methodists recently joined together for "Deaf Ministry: Boot Camp." Participants were United Methodists, as well other denominations, some of whom came from the Baltimore-Washington Annual Conference and the Eastern Pennsylvania Annual Conference. Some were newcomers to deaf ministry, while others were wanting to learn more and leave with new ideas.
Read more of the story from UM Disability.

Judicial Council oral hearings available online

ZURICH (UMNS) — A webcast of the Judicial Council oral hearings that took place Oct. 23 are now archived for viewing at any time. The hearings dealt with Commission on Way a Forward plans, a question from the Commission on General Conference and questions from the Council of Bishops. The denomination’s top court can release opinions any time after its meeting concludes Oct. 26.
Read more from United Methodist News service
Watch the webcast recording


Forum on Income Inequality: How does this happen?

Forum logo

Join people of faith at a screening of Robert Reich’s documentary “Saving Capitalism” at Augustana Lutheran Church, 2710 NE 14th Ave., Portland, OR on Oct. 28 from 2:00 – 4:00 p.m.
America was once celebrated for and defined by its large and prosperous middle class. Now, this middle class is shrinking, and the country faces its greatest wealth disparity in eighty years. Why is the economic system that made America strong suddenly failing us, and how can it be fixed?
The video is produced and stars Robert Reich, economist, professor, and former Secretary of Labor. Reich presents a paradigm-shifting examination of a political and economic status quo that no longer serves the people. Then Daniel Hauser from the Oregon Center for Public Policy will present information on Oregon’s own income disparities and the policies contributing to it. Following will be a discussion about what we’ve learned, and what people of faith can do to address income inequality.
The free forum is a collaboration by Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon, Oregon Coalition of Christian Voices, Interfaith Alliance on Poverty, and Portland Jobs with Justice Faith-Labor Committee. Learn more on the Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon website.


  • The General Conference established United Methodist Student Day in 1940.
  • Today, 62 percent of American families say they can’t afford to send their children to college.
  • When we started celebrating Student Day in 1940, a college education could be attained for $450 annually. Today, that same education costs an average of $23,000 each year.
  • United Methodist Student Day will be celebrated on November 25.
  • You can get Student Day resources at
Oregon-Idaho Annual Conference Conference Office: 1505 SW 18th Avenue Portland, OR 97201
503-226-7931 ~ 800-593-7539 ~ 503-226-4158 (fax)