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e~Aurora (a weekly news update)
The Alaska United Methodist ConferenceNovember 18, 2014
In This Issue
~Superintendent's Blog
~Diana Butler Bass
~Giving Tuesday
~Report from the Bishops
~Grants Available
~Ebola Death
~Kassig Family
~Mission u
~World AIDS Day
~Student Day

ACS Print  

20/20 Vision:
Leading to God's New Horizons


Upcoming  Clergy

Contact Information


Supt. Carlo Rapanut 
cell 907-854-8340  

Ministry Quicklinks

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2013 Conference Journal
The Conference Journal is posted on our website and you can access it anytime you would like.  Download it onto your computer desktop for easy research.

Reflections of a Running Reverend
My blog for this week is: A Special Breed. If you have ever missed a week, you can read my previous blogs here.
Diana Butler Bass Diana Butler Bass Rescheduled for 2015
Diana Butler Bass will be in Alaska January 30-31, 2015.  Her learning event will be held at St. John UMC and the FREE public lecture will be held at St. Mary's Episcopal Church.  Here is the information sheet and registration form.  Stay tuned for more details in the weeks to come.  You can visit her website for more information about her.
GivingTuesday, December 2
GivingTuesday is 2 weeks away!!!  The Alaska United Methodist Conference is a missionary conference so there are several projects within our state that count on donor dollars to fund some of their work.  You can find a listing of our Missionaries and local projects with Advance numbers here.  Along with those projects is our Missional Priority - Imagine No Malaria.  You can donate to this cause as well and even indicate your church in your donation so that your dollar amount donated can be added to your church's goal.  It really is a win/win situation!  You can download the directions on how to donate here.

Every gift made online through The Advance this year on December 2 will be matched up to $1 million (*see website for stipulations).

UMC #GivingTuesday offers an opportunity to start off the holiday season by giving instead of getting, through supporting organizations and missionaries that have been researched and approved by Global Ministries. And 100 percent of all gifts made through The Advance are given directly to the designated project.

Council of Bishops Congregational Vitality Report from the Bishops
The Council of Bishops has distributed a report on Congregational Church Vitality.  You can read the report here.  They talk about New Church Starts and Vital Congregations.
GBOD Grants Available to Spark Creative Vital Congregation Growth

Grants totaling $200,000 are now available from Discipleship Ministries to encourage local churches, annual conferences and central conferences to experiment with innovative and creative approaches to growing vital congregations.

The grants seek to spur quantifiable growth in worship attendance, professions of faith, small groups, mission engagement and missional giving.

The experimental funds are being offered to help any local church, annual conference or central conference develop new projects or events to inspire vital congregation growth.

To obtain a grant application, contact Jeffrey Campbell, Director of Annual Conference Relationships at Discipleship Ministries, at

The grant application deadline is Jan. 30, 2015.

Church mourns Ebola death of Sierra Leone surgeon
The Sierra Leone United Methodist Conference is in shock over the death of Dr. Martin Salia from Ebola. Salia, who was the Chief Medical Officer and only surgeon at United Methodist Kissy Hospital, died after he was airlifted to the United States for treatment.  Read the rest of the article here.
UMComm Kassig Family Remembers Hostage Son's Desire to Help

The United Methodist parents of the latest hostage executed by the Islamic State group are remembering his dedication to assisting those who have suffered during Syria's civil war.


"We are heartbroken to learn that our son, Abdul-Rahman Peter Kassig, has lost his life as a result of his love for the Syrian people and his desire to ease their suffering," said Ed and Paula Kassig, members of Epworth United Methodist Church in Indianapolis, in a statement posted Nov. 16 on the family's Twitter account and Facebook page. "Our heart also goes out to the families of the Syrians who lost their lives along with our son."  Read the rest of the article here

UMW United Methodist Women

The "Save the Date" flyer is out and ready for posting on your churches bulletin board.  Make sure you don't miss out on the event happening in your area!


The latest newsletter is available for download as well.  To read about the latest events going on with Alaska United Methodist Women, read the newsletter here.


Finally, the executive board of United Methodist Women of Alaska is accepting applications for Mission u Study Leaders for 2015-2016.  Please find attached, in WORD and PDF, a summary of the courses to be facilitated throughout the Alaska Conference.  Information and an application is included.  Please note the deadline for applications is December 15, 2014.  You may contact Bonnie Miller at or 907-776-8555 or 907-440-1636 with any questions.


Bonnie has started a Blog in which news about Alaska Mission u will be posted periodically.  You can see it at
World AIDS Day - December 1, 2014 (or Sunday, November 30)

World AIDS Day, observed each year on December 1, provides an opportunity for people around the world to unite in the fight against HIV and AIDS and to show their compassion and support to those living with the disease. Tie it into your 1st Sunday of Advent! There are several resources available for worship here and here.


World AIDS Day is one of the UMC's Special Offering Sundays providing a great way for our churches here in the Alaska Conference to help raise funds for the UMC's next great priority: eradicating HIV by 2020. The United Methodist Global AIDS Fund invites you to participate in the Just Save One initiative. 75% of the funds for the Global AIDS Fund will be used for projects to educate, prevent, and treat HIV/AIDS all over the world. 25% of the funds we raise stays in the Alaska Conference to be used for HIV/AIDS ministries!


Let people know how to donate! There are a few ways to give:

1. Drop a check made payable to UMCOR in your church offering plate and indicate Advance #982345 on the memo line. Doing it this way will assure that the Alaska Conference receives 25% of your donation.

2. Mail your contribution to UMCOR, PO Box 9068, New York, NY 10087.

3. Go to Give To Mission and type #982345 to access the UM Global AIDS Fund giving page.


Take a look at this video and use it as an educational tool for your congregation(s)!

United Methodist Student Day
United Methodist Student Day calls the church to support students as they prepare for life in uniting faith with knowledge. The offering provides scholarships for qualified United Methodist students. November 30 is set as this year's United Methodist Student Day, but your congregation may choose to celebrate UMSD on any Sunday during the year.
PNW/OR-ID Celebrate their Filipino-Americans
On November 30, 2014, the PNW & Oregon-Idaho Conferences will hold a Filipino-American Faith Community Celebration.  The Vespers will be held in Vancouver, WA and their special guest is Bishop Pedro M. Torio Jr. from the Baguio Episcopal Area in the Philippines.  See the flyer.

Upcoming Events

     19: UMC of Chugiak Church Conference
     22: Girdwood Chapel UMC Church Conference
     23: First UMC, Anchorage Church Conference
     23: First Samoan UMC Church Conference
     27: Thanksgiving - Office Closed
     30: Christ First UMC Church Conference

     1: World AIDS Day
     2: #GivingTuesday
     2: St. John UMC Church Conference
     7: First UMC, Fairbanks Church Conference
     13: Homer UMC Church Conference
     14: Anchorage Korean UMC Church Conference
     15-17: Carlo in Seattle for Greater Northwest Cabinet Meeting
     24: Office Closed half day - Christmas Eve
     25: Office Closed - Christmas Day
     26-Jan 4: Carlo on vacation
     31: Office Closed half day - New Year's Eve

     1: Office Closed - New Year's Day
     7: UMC of Sitka Church Conference
     8: First UMC, Ketchikan Church Conference
     10: Aldersgate UMC Church Conference
     10: Douglas Community UMC Church Conference
     11: Northern Light United Church Conference
     13-18: Carlo in Seattle at meetings
     18: Anchor Park UMC Church Conference
     21-23: Carlo in Portland for Greater NW Cabinet Retreat
     23-25: United Methodist Women Midwinter Meeting @ Birchwood Camp
     25: Willow UMC Church Conference
     29-31: Winter Meetings and Diana Butler Bass Leadership Event
If you have an article or event that you would like the rest of the conference to know about and participate in, feel free to submit them to me each week by Monday evening.  I ask that you type up what you want included and let me know how many weeks you want it published for.  Thank you!
Contact Info

Crystal Feaster
Administrative Assistant
907-333-5050 phone
907-333-2304 fax