September 11, 2019
First Things First
As I wrote last month, I want the folks of the Cascadia District to engage in self-reflection and study that focuses on issues of race and power. But before we can go too deeply into this, we must first work at understanding ourselves. One way to talk about this and to understand how it plays a part in these conversations is to know about emotional intelligence.
What is Emotional Intelligence? Emotional intelligence (EI) refers to the ability to identify and manage one’s own emotions, as well as understand the emotions of others. Emotional intelligence is generally said to include at least three skills: emotional awareness, or the ability to identify and name one’s own emotions; the ability to harness those emotions and apply them to tasks like thinking and problem solving; and the ability to manage emotions, which includes both regulating one’s own emotions when necessary and helping others to do the same.
Another way to understand EI is to talk about it in four ways: Cultural Self-Awareness, Self-Governance, Intercultural Literacy, and Systems of Equity. Cultural self-awareness is the uncovering of the values and assumptions that you see as normative. Self-governance is the ability to analyze and understand your reactions and to speak powerfully and authentically. Intercultural literacy is the study of other cultures, how they formed and why they operate as they do. Systems of equity are systems where those cultural differences are sought out, celebrated, and valued.
When we are aware of our own culture and worldview we can more accurately and authentically understand how we react to differences. This is a necessary step in opening ourselves in curiosity to how others differ in their patterns, behaviors and views. Pausing to recognize our emotional reactions to those differences helps us to respond in more appropriate and helpful ways. Working to understand the culture of another, even though generalities are not always how each individual will function, allows us to see the nuances of culture – our own and others – and this helps cultivate empathy and reinforces our desire to connect with others in meaningful ways. And if we understand our own culture and that of others we can begin to create systems of equity which will allow us all to bend to a larger purpose, which for us is the transforming of life and the world, creating the beloved community, helping to make God’s dream for creation real.
To live into the Great Commandment is to practice emotional intelligence. To practice our Wesleyan “practical divinity,” our love of God linked with love of neighbor, a passion for justice and renewal in the life of the world (BOD 2016 ¶102), we need a good working knowledge of ourselves and others and this means understanding how we see and interact with others.
I know that this kind of work is hard. It means looking closely and critically at ourselves. It means taking the time and expending the energy to know why we are the way we are and why we react and act the ways we do. To begin to explore racism and white privilege we must understand ourselves and our biases and preconceptions. We need to understand why we are the way we are before we can begin to deconstruct one way of being and construct one that better reflects God’s dream for all of us.
Emotional Intelligence is a path to a better world. It is a part of the journey we are on as those who follow The Way. It is part of our toolbox as we make this road. It is vital in our work to be disciples of Jesus Christ, partners of God, transforming lives and the world.
Cascadia District Lay Superintendent
Note: Much of what appears here was influenced by and taken from the work of Kristina Gonzalez of the Innovation and Vitality Team of the Greater Northwest Area of the UMC. And it wiill be part of our work together at the Cascadia District Fall Event on Saturday, September 28th. Register now!
Time to register for the
- When: Saturday, September 28th from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
- Where: MICAH Building, downtown Salem, OR
- Who should attend?
- All local church clergy plus at least one lay person from the congregation; more lay folks are welcome!
- Clergy in extension ministry and retired clergy are also welcome!
- People from outside Cascadia District are welcome!
- What will happen?
- Focus on Inclusion, Innovation, and Multiplication
- We'll worship, learn all together and expand our understanding and skills in four workshops which each participant will attend.
- Cultural Self-Awareness
- The Culture Shaping Church
- A Culture of Intentional Multiplication
- Hidden in Plain Sight
- And Cascadia District Extension Society Annual Meeting over catered lunch
- Leaders? Members of the Greater Northwest Area Innovation Vitality Team
- Rev. Dr. William Gibson, Director of Innovation for a New Church
- Kristina Gonzalez, Director of Innovation for an Inclusive Church
- Rev. Dr. Leroy Barber, Director of Innovation for an Engaged Church
- Read their bios by clicking on this link.
You can register as a group from your church. Registration is $6 for a single person from a church or $10 covers a group of 2 or more from one church. Please register by September 16th so that we can be ready for you with food and materials.
We never intend to exclude, but somehow we end up in churches with groups of folks who look an awful lot like us. How can we expand our insight and skills so that we are better at inclusion? How can we communicate to folks who are different than we are that we value them, will make space for them, and help them thrive?
Options for the Future of The UMC
Cascadia District Superintendent Tim Overton-Harris will be meeting with local congregations in geographic clusters on Sundays in October and November to discuss the options for the future of The United Methodist Church following the decisions made by the 2019 Special General Conference.
These events are informational and intended to provide a safe space to learn about the various options, ask questions, and to share opinions and preferences with the D.S. The discussions will take place using guidelines to allow all to share and to avoid judgement or debate or attempts to persuade.
DS Tim hopes that attendance from each congregation will include at least the
- SPRC chair or representative,
- Trustees chair or representative,
- Lay Leader and/or
- Church Board chair
Other leaders and interested members are welcome as well.
Click here to see the locations and church clusters for each Sunday.
Please make note of the date for your cluster meeting and plan to attend. Pre-registration will help us prepare for your participation! There is no cost.
Celebration of Mission Past and Future - Sign Up!
Two hundred years ago John Stewart, an African American farmer in Ohio, began a ministry to the Wyandot tribe of Native Americans. This humble beginning even then reflected the “from everywhere to everywhere” understanding of global missions that is leading us into the 21st century.
We in Oregon and Idaho are the direct descendants of that mission movement. As we mark the 200th anniversary of Methodist global ministry, the Oregon-Idaho Global Ministry Team is bringing a Bicentennial celebration to three locations- Roseburg (10/5), Tigard (10/12), and Boise (10/26) this Fall.
It will be a celebration of our history, but also a chance for individuals and churches to equip themselves with resources and information on current mission opportunities both locally and globally. These events are for everyone with a heart for mission, and especially for those seeking new ways to engage locally and globally.
Keynote Speaker: Dr. Benjamin Hartley, Professor of Christian Mission at George Fox University and a clergy member of the Oregon-Idaho Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. In his work as an ordained deacon Ben is appointed to both George Fox University and Mountain Home United Methodist Church on Chehalem mountain, a few miles north of Newberg.
Workshops will include
- Disaster Preparedness/Connecting Neighbors
- Disaster Response
- United Methodist Volunteers in Mission
- Current Missionary Service
- Abundant Health for All
- The Advance/UMCOR
Cost: $20.00 Includes lunch and all program materials.
Here are some promotional resources to use in your local church and with other interested parties:
Register at www.umoi.org/missions
For more information, please contact Roz Collins at firstname.lastname@example.org or 503.618.9999.
Celebration of MicroGrants
At our Cascadia District Lunch at the close of the 2019 Annual Conference Session, we celebrated all the creative and life-enhancing ways local churches in the district made use of the MicroGrants which were distributed to local church and other Cascadia District ministry sites at the 2018 Annual Conference Cascadia District lunch.
As one pastor watched the slides go by with photos and brief descriptions of the various projects, he said, "I like these. I like some of these more than what we are doing!"
We are better together -- sharing ideas and inspirations!
Bend FUMC makes videos!
To continue the celebration and to help inspire you with more ways your congregation might be able to reach out to new people in new ways, we'll be highlighting some of the microgrant projects over the next couple of months in the district newsletter, on our FB page, and on our district website.
- Silverton UMC used their funds to start a community garden. Learn more by clicking here.
- Stayton FUMC used their funds to purchase shopping bags to initiate conversations around faith and stewardship of the Earth. Learn more by clicking here.
- Bend FUMC is making videos of members to share with others - to help keep in touch as their membership grows.Learn more by clicking here.
- Yamhill UMC is building a Little Free Library box to share with both adults and children in their community. Learn more by clicking here.
See all the information about the microgrants and the projects highlighted so far at www.umoi.org/cascadia
This week in the
Cascadia District churches are being Christ to their members and neighbors
Linda will be sending out Charge Conference information this week!
Cascadia District Event for Clergy and Lay Leadership
Suburban Ring Colloquy - Tigard
High Desert Colloquy - Madras
Wine Country Colloquy - McMinnville
Open Door Churches Colloquy - Salem
Heart of the Valley Colloquy - Salem
Molalla & Pudding Rivers Colloquy - Canby
North Coast Colloquy -
High Desert Cluster Gathering: Options for Future of UMC - Madras
Cascadia District Committee on Ministry
Mission Celebration - Tigard
Reconciling UMs meeting - Christ UMC, Portland
Molalla & Pudding Rivers Cluster Gathering: Options for Future of UMC - Woodburn
Heart of the Valley Cluster Gathering - Options for Future of UMC - Salem
Wine Country Cluster Gathering - Options for Future of UMC - McMinnville
Pastor Quinton Kimbrow
Lay Leader Nancy Adams
Falls City UMC
Pastor Steve Michell
Lay Leader Kendra VanGelder
Forest Grove UMC
Pastor Dan Thompson-Aue
Lay Leader John Hayes
See the full prayer calendar
Please let District Superintendent Tim know about significant events happening in your local congregation. He may or may not be able to attend, but he would like to know about them! Tim is also occasionally available to preach at your church! You can e-mail him at email@example.com
Upcoming events in the District Superintendent's Schedule:
Sept. 9-12 GNW Cabinet
Sept. 28 Cascadia District Fall Event
Oct. 1-3 Cascadia District Colloquies
Oct. 6 High Desert Cluster Meeting
Oct. 7 District Committee on Ministry
In addition to what is listed here, Tim is meeting with clergy one-to-one in August and September
Stewardship Campaign Season
Cesie Delve Scheuermann, our Oregon-Idaho stewardship consultant and author of the Inspiring Generosity Blog, doesn't like that we traditionally have a stewardship campaign season. She reminds use that stewardship and generosity are foundational values of the Christian life, not just topics of a single season when we try to get subscriptions to our local church budget.
But with that said, there is a traditional time of the year when local churches focus on encouraging people to give in support of the church's mission, and that is about now!
Here a few resources:
- The most recent Inspiring Generosity Blog which asks, "What's Your Relationship Status with Money?" suggests that knowing your congregation's answer to that question may help you be more successful in asking for money!
- And did you know that Cesie has collected a whole bunch of stewardship resources for you that are on the conference website? Check out www.umoi.org/stewardship -- once you are there, check the links in the left-hand menu under "stewardship."
- The Northwest United Methodist Foundation has an article comparing seven popular Stewardship Campaign programs, most of which are available through Cokesbury. Read that here.
Opportunities to Serve
Church Extension Society Looking for Officers
The Cascadia District Church Extension Society is looking for persons from all over the district who are willing to serve on the Executive Committee. The job is fun! It includes reviewing grant and loan applications for funding of new ministries and upkeep at our local churches. You get to give money away to encourage ministry!
If you or someone you know might be interested, please fill out the Nominations Form, which you will find by clicking here. Send the completed form by e-mail to CascadiaDCES@umoi.org or by mail to Cascadia District Office, 680 State St., Suite 200, Salem, OR 97301.
Quilts for Kids
United Methodist Women across the GNW Episcopal Area are working together to make quilts for "Children at Risk." The goal for the Oregon-Idaho Annual Conference is 160, 40 from each District (but wouldn't 400 - 100 from each district -- be better?!)
The quilts will be taken to the combined Annual Conference Session in Puyallup, WA June 11-14, 2020.
For specifics on materials and sizes, and other information, contact Jo Ann English: firstname.lastname@example.org, 541-741-0575 Home, 541-743-6878 Mobile.
by the Rev. Jeremy Pridgeon, DS of the Pensacola District of the Alabama-West Florida AC
O God, our hope and refuge,
in our distress we come quickly to you.
Shock and horror of that tragic day have subsided,
replaced now with an emptiness,
a longing for an innocence lost.
We come remembering those who lost their lives
in New York, Washington D.C., and Pennsylvania.
We are mindful of the sacrifice of public servants
who demonstrated the greatest love of all
by laying down their lives for friends.
We commit their souls to your eternal care
and celebrate their gifts to a fallen humanity.
We come remembering
and we come in hope,
not in ourselves, but in you.
As foundations we once thought secure have been shaken,
we are reminded of the illusion of security.
In commemorating this tragedy,
we give you thanks for your presence
in our time of need
and we seek to worship you in Spirit and in truth,
our guide and our guardian. Amen
DS Tim Overton-Harris
District Lay Leader
District Administrative Assistant
Check out the Cascadia District webpage: