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e~Aurora (a weekly news update)
The Alaska United Methodist ConferenceFebruary 23, 2016
In This Issue
~Superintendent's Blog
~1st Sunday Prayers
~Annual Conference
~Advance Renewal Applications
~Mission u Event
~Musician Available
~Mass Shooting Victim
~Free Course for GC2016
~Death of Harper Lee
~World Day of Prayer
~One Great Hour of Sharing
~Idita-Walk Fundraiser
~Need a VIM Team?

ACS Print  

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


Upcoming  Clergy

March 11 - 
Sandra Hammett

March 21 - 
Nico Romeijn-Stout

March 25 -
Evelyn Erbele

March 29 - 
Doug Handlong

Contact Information


Carlo Rapanut

cell 907-854-8340  

Ministry Quicklinks

Join Our Mailing List

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.

Superintendent's Blog
Read my new blog post for this week: A Necessary Dying.

You can always read past blog posts here.

We want to thank everyone who helped make the Creating Congregational Cultures of Generosity workshop this past weekend a success.

Have a great week!
Words of Prayer for the 2016 General Conference
First Sundays Bulletin Inserts now available
As part of the Greater Northwest Episcopal Area, each of the 475 local churches in the Alaska, Oregon-Idaho, and Pacific Northwest Conferences have the honor of serving as hosts for the several thousand United Methodists who will gather from around the globe in Portland, Oregon this May for General Conference 2016. Some will share in this honor by volunteering in person, but we can all be a part of a prayerful welcome.
Bishop Hagiya is inviting you and your congregation to join him in an area-wide experience of prayer for General Conference that will take place on the first Sunday of the month from March through June 2016. 
Click through to read a letter from the Bishop and to download inserts for use in your church bulletins. (

Annual Conference
We want to make sure that Annual Conference is on your calendars, especially for clergy and lay delegates.  All events will occur at St. John United Methodist Church.  There will be a day of workshops on Thursday, June 2nd and then the conference will be Friday, June 3rd through Saturday, June 4th.

This year's theme for Annual Conference is Keeping Sabbath: Resting, Rejoicing, Returning. As Christians we inherit a story of creation where God rests after six long days bringing what is into being.

Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy .... For in six days the Lord made the heavens and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy. (Exodus 20:8-11.)
Advance Advance Renewal Applications
For all the churches and projects that have assigned Advance numbers, the renewal deadline for continuance in the next quadrennium is March 15, 2016.  If you have any questions, feel free to contact The Advance at or at 212-870-3718 for further support.
Southeast Alaska Mission u Event at UMC of Sitka
Every year the United Methodist Women of Alaska put on educational events based on study topics.  This year the studies are Created for Happiness: Understanding Your Life in God which is led by Susie Smalley and Latin America: People and Faith led by Walt Hays.  The last event will take place at UMC of Sitka on March 11-12, 2016.  Please contact Jennifer Miller if you have any questions.
Musician Available to Perform at Alaska UM Churches
Musician Jim Hendricks will be touring for ministry throughout the US and abroad between May 2016 and August 2017. Most of his travel expenses have already been funded. He does concerts on a free-will offering basis, so there is no financial obligation for the churches. This is a United Methodist-based music ministry.
You can find his biography, mission statement, and music samples at  His doctrinal statement is also available upon request.

Any church that is interested can also obtain free CD's for consideration.
Prof. Jim Hendricks 
(888) 394-0524 or (815) 254-3104 in the U.S.
Mass Shooting Victim was Lifelong United Methodist
At least one of the eight victims of the tragic mass shooting on Feb. 20 was a lifelong active member and leader in The United Methodist Church. Mark Doyal reports on the death of Mary Jo "MJ" Nye.
Free Online Course Helps Engage More People with General Conference
Exploring General Conference, a free online course from  United Methodist Communications, is designed to help participants learn more about the official decision-making body of The United Methodist Church and to explore many of the aspects of General Conference in anticipation of the 2016 session.
The course is comprised of five modules, which are designed to take about 30 minutes to complete. Throughout the course, students have the opportunity to engage in interactive activities to dig deeper into understanding aspects of General Conference. 
Depending on the amount of additional exploration chosen, users may spend more time in each module, and return to any page, section or activity at any time during the course for review.
Although the course is free of cost, learners are awarded .25 ALLLM CEU upon completion. 
Through the five modules, learners will develop an understanding of the following:  the history of General Conference, its role and purpose; how delegates are elected to General Conference; delegates' roles and responsibilities; how petitions, general church budget and other important matters are decided through General Conference; various social issues facing The United Methodist Church and the denomination's stance on these issues; the highlights of the 2012 General Conference and what's ahead for the 2016 General Conference.
For more information, or to sign up for the course, go to
Harper Lee was United Methodist in Word, Deed
Harper Lee's death at age 89 brought expressions of sadness from fellow United Methodists, as well as gratitude for her writing. The Alabamian's "To Kill a Mockingbird," which includes references to Methodism, is regarded as a classic coming-of-age tale that also grapples with racism in the Depression-era South.
World Day of Prayer
Church Women United Alaska will celebrate World Day of Prayer on Friday March 4, 2016 at 11 a.m. at St. Mark Lutheran Church (3230 Lake Otis Parkway, Anchorage, 99508).

The worship service was written by women of Cuba and the theme is "Receive Children, Receive Me".  For more info call Jan Wachsmuth at 862-0194.  Check out the website for World Day of Prayer 2016
One Great Hour of Sharing - March 6
Now is the time to prepare for the One Great Hour of Sharing church-wide special Sunday.  You can get information specific to this special Sunday at and download a free pastors toolkit for a series of resources so you can prepare, advertise and share the amazing opportunity of One Great Hour of Sharing with your congregation and social media audience.
Idita-Walk Fundraiser for Nome Community Center
The Nome Community Center, a UMW National Mission Institution,  is sponsoring the 1,049-minute walking event Idita-Walk, which draws participants from across Alaska, and around the globe.  Even your dog can participate in this walking event!

To participate in the Idita-Walk, keep track of how many minutes you walk per day on a paper form. Strive to reach the goal of 1,049 minutes - the same number of miles that sled dogs and mushers must trek across Alaska in order to reach the Iditarod finish line. If you walk an average of 35 minutes a day, you'll finish in 30 days. The Idita-Walk starts February 1st and ends March 31st.

The event benefits the Nome Community Center and all the services it provides Nome and the Bering Strait region, including the Nome Food Bank, the XYZ Senior Center, Nome Children's Home and Family Services.

It is $10 to register per person (or dog), $30 to register and order a T-shirt, and $50 to register and order a sweatshirt. If you're among the first 750 to sign up, you'll receive an official 2016 Idita-Walk pin upon registration
You can sign up for the 2016 Idita-Walk online at
clasped-hands-sky.jpg Need a VIM Team?
There is a VIM team that is looking for placement in Alaska, potentially for August of this summer.  If your church is looking for help with a project or ministry, please contact Daniel Wilcox,, 907.414.7078, Interim Conference VIM coordinator, so he can get you in touch with the group leader.

Upcoming Events

     29- March 2: Carlo in Sitka and Juneau

     7-11: Carlo in Boise for GNW Cabinet meeting and NLI Conference
     13: Daylight Saving Time
     20: Palm Sunday
     21-23: Carlo in Seattle for GNW Cabinet meeting
     27: Easter Sunday

     3: Camping Sunday for the Alaska United Methodist Conference
     11-14: Carlo in Oregon for GNW Cabinet meeting

     10-20: General Conference in Portland.  Carlo attending
     30: Memorial Day - Office Closed

     2: Annual Conference Workshops
     3-4: Annual Conference at St. John UMC
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