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e~Aurora (a weekly news update)
The Alaska United Methodist ConferenceNovember 17, 2015
In This Issue
~Bishop's Blog
~Giving Tuesday
~Council of Bishops
~Sierra Leone Ebola Free
~Christmas is Not Your Birthday
~UMW Launches Digital Magazine
~Annual Christmas Brunch
~FREE Webinars

ACS Print  

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


Upcoming  Clergy

November 17 -
Jean Bruscia

December 23 -
Curtis Matz

Contact Information


Carlo Rapanut

cell 907-854-8340  

Ministry Quicklinks

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2015 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.

Bishop Grant Hagiya
Bishop's Blog
Bishop Hagiya has a new blog today and he talks about how close The United Methodist Church is to their fundraising goal for Imagine No Malaria.  The goal is to raise $75 million by General Conference 2016 and we only have $7 million more to go.  That is right, we have reached 90% of our goal already!!!  Read his blog here.

Here is the denominations announcement that we have reached 90% of the goal.
Superintendent's Blog
Carlo's blog this week is: On Vows, Pledges, and Running Marathons.

To catch up on previous blog posts you may have missed, click here.
Giving Tuesday, December 1
On Dec. 1, United Methodists will come together for the third year to support the work of Advance projects and missionaries on UMC #GivingTuesday. Sponsored by the denomination's General Board of Global Ministries, individuals, churches, and annual conferences (regional offices) combine Advent and Christmas seasonal giving with global mission and outreach opportunities. The theme for the 2015 campaign is "Activate Love. Transform Lives. Change the World."  Global Ministries will allocate matching funds dollar for dollar up to the first $1 million in gifts to Advance projects received online on Dec. 1, 2015, between 12:00 a.m. and 11:59 p.m. CT.  A maximum of $2,500 per individual gift to a project will be dispersed as matching funds.  A project may receive a maximum of $25,000 in matching funds.

Learn more and download resources

We have several projects within our own conference.  As Alaskans we are able to start giving at 9:00 p.m. on Monday, November 30!  This is a time change from previous years as the new beginning time is based on Central Time NOT Eastern Time.

Here is a list of the Alaska projects you can support!
Mission Contexts and Relationships
Alaska Churches
931027 - Strengthening local church mission and ministry while launching new leadership for new programs.

Alaska Ethnic and Rural Camping and Conference Fund
931024 - Flying Native American and Alaska Native children to Christian camps for church and spiritual activities.

Birchwood Camp
931068 - Building community on holy ground by providing program spaces and year-round staff housing.

931602 - Reaching out to all of God's children through a variety of faith based activities

3021214 - Creating a sustainable home and developing leadership for CUMC and its ministries.

Downtown Ministries, First United Methodist Church Ketchikan
3020487 - Providing a place for the homeless or temporary housing to spend daytime hours.

Girdwood Chapel United Methodist Church
931007 - Building larger facilities to greatly increase the breadth and scope of worship and social services.

Hope Retreat Center
3020590 - Replacing kitchen floor and cabinets and installing energy-efficient windows and insulation.

931855 - Ministering to the Bering Sea Fishing Fleet, processors, stranded crew members and workers.

Willow Alaska United Methodist Church
931511 - Serving poor rural communities spiritually, with basic physical needs, and with help in emergencies.

Willow Church and Community Ministry
931520 - Providing Christian education to children in Anvik and Grayling and also responding to emergencies.

  1. Erbele, Evelyn (10832Z) - Co-pastor of First United Methodist Church in Ketchikan, Alaska.
  2. Erbele, Terence (10831Z) - Co-Pastor of First United Methodist Church in Ketchikan, Alaska.
  3. Lynch, Wilma Frances (982950) - Deaconess serving as a Church and Community Worker in Willow, Alaska.
Conference Missional Priority
Council of Bishops Council of Bishops President: Statement on the Paris Attacks
The President of the United Methodist Council of Bishops issued the following statement about the November 13 terrorist attacks in Paris:

John 11:35
Jesus wept.

This week, we weep for those in Paris. We weep for the senseless violence. We weep for the innocents whose lives were cut short. We weep for those who are grieving, who are frightened, who are hurting. We weep for those whose hearts are breaking, in France and all over the world. As several world leaders have stated, this is an attack on all humanity.

Even as we weep, we know that God is with us, that he sustains us with hope and that he will dry our tears. Once again, the forces of evil have tried to dominate; but, as disciples of Jesus, we must make our witness that the darkness will not overcome our light.

Let us be in prayer for Paris and the people of France. These events have impacted them in the way September 11, 2001, grieved the U.S. Also, please pray for communities around our world that will not make the news, but cringe under the threat of violence. May the Holy Spirit guide us in ways that will break this cycle of violence.

Bishop Warner H. Brown, Jr.
President, Council of Bishops
Sierra Leone Celebrates End of Ebola
United Methodists held thanksgiving services and joined in celebrations tinged with sadness and caution as the World Health Organization declared the end of the 18-month Ebola outbreak after Sierra Leone reported no new cases for 42 days.
Christmas is Not Your Birthday
This Christmas is not Kuna UMC's birthday ... and they know it. Rev. Karen Hernandez has taken Rev. Mike Slaughter's idea to heart, and she's challenging her congregation for the 5th year in a row to spend as much on a special Christmas Eve offering as they do on Christmas gifts. What's different this year? Half the money will go to Imagine No Malaria. Read more on the Greater Northwest Imagine No Malaria website.
United Methodist Women Launches Digital Magazine
A new digital version of the United Methodist Women's magazine, "response," will be published 11 times a year. The hope is that offering a digital edition as well as print will increase mobility, sustainability and accessibility for readers. "Digital response is just another way to receive and share stories of women in mission," said interim editor Tara Barnes. "It's an especially appealing option for those looking to reduce their carbon footprint or increase or decrease text size."
See preview and learn more
poinsettias.jpg Annual Christmas Brunch
St. John United Methodist Women will host their Annual Christmas Brunch on Saturday, December 5, 2015 at 10am.  Cost of the brunch is $10.  Nursery will be provided.
A skit, Don't Let the Grouches Steal Your Christmas, will be presented.  We'd love to have you join us for great food, grand fun and gregarious fellowship!

Please bring a new children's or youth book to donate to Bethel.
To purchase a ticket or make a reservation, please email or call the church office at 344-3025.
FREE Webinars
Church leaders from around our denomination are eligible to participate in these upcoming free webinars offered by the GBOD Leadership Ministries division.  You can register online by going here.  Here are a few of the webinars coming up:
~Tuesday, November 17 - Measuring Your Effectiveness
~Monday, November 23 - 51 Ideas for Children's Ministers

Upcoming Events

     19-21: Carlo in Portland for GNW Cabinet meeting and GNW Visioning Task Force
     22: Christ First UMC Church Conference
     22: Palmer Fellowship Church Conference
     29: UMC of Chugiak Church Conference

     1: St. John UMC Church Conference
     6: Anchorage Korean UMC Church Conference
     7-15: Crystal on vacation
     8: Willow UMC Church Conference
     9: First UMC Anchorage & First Samoan UMC Church Conference
     11: Seward Memorial UMC & Moose Pass UMC Church Conference
     12: Kenai UMC Church Conference
     12: North Star UMC Church Conference
     13-16: Carlo in Seattle for GNW Cabinet meeting and Tuell Center planning meeting
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