News

COVID-19 Update and Prayer Request

posted on August 03

Dear Friends,   Below please find a note to the Appalachian District Clergy from their Superintendent. One of their churches is experiencing a very difficult situation related to COVID-19, one I pray...
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On Hurting and Healing: Northern Piedmont’s Roll of Love and Remembrance

posted on August 02

On Hurting and Healing: Northern Piedmont’s Roll of Love and Remembrance Let the little children come to me; do not stop them, for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs.           ...
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NCDHHS COVID-19 Update for Faith Leaders - July 29, 2021

posted on July 30

Faith Leader Update from NCDHHS - July 29, 2021 Faith Leaders: After months of decline, North Carolina is experiencing a rapid increase in COVID-19 cases among those who are unvaccinated. Today, ...
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Update to COVID-19 Guidelines: Rapid Spread of Delta Variant

posted on July 28

Dear Friends,   Below please find some important information related to the rapid spread of the COVID-19 Delta variant. We are concerned about your congregation’s well-being, and we hope that this ...
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Updates on COVID Vaccine Rates & Local Availability

posted on July 21

Hi Friends,   I hope your week is going well, and that in this summer season you have enjoyed good time with family and at church. It’s beautiful to gather again; may we never take it for granted!   ...
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Spoiled Brat, That’s Me

posted on July 14

Spoiled brat…that’s what I am.  Not bragging about it, just humbly confessing that is what I am. This epiphany came to me one morning whilst God and I were chatting and the first light of a new day ...
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Celebrating Covenant Faithfulness On First Days … and Every Day

posted on July 06

Celebrating Covenant Faithfulness On First Days … and Every Day “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” – Luke 12:34   Today is the first day “in the office” for our newly ...
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A Welcome Like Christ Would Give

posted on June 29

  A Welcome Like Christ Would Give For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, so that by steadfastness and by the encouragement of the scriptures we might have hope. May ...
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Praying Our Goodbyes

posted on June 21

PRAYING OUR GOODBYES   “May the Lord watch between thee and me, while we are absent one from the other.”                                                                      -Genesis 31:49   Author ...
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Abundantly Far More

posted on June 21

Bishop Paul Leeland, Commissioning & Ordination Services, June 19, 2021 Abundantly Far More   “Now to him who by the power at work within us is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we ...
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In Memory of George Perry Floyd, Jr.

posted on May 27

In Memory of George Perry Floyd, Jr. October 14, 1973 - May 25, 2020   Like many people throughout our nation and world, my heart is heavy today. The heaviness is triggered by recalling the general ...
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Guidelines for In-Person Worship and Ministry during COVID-19 - Updated May 18, 2021

posted on May 18

Download a copy of the updated guidelines. Find resources for online and in-person worship and ministry during COVID-19 here. The CDC and Governor Cooper have issued new guidance regarding masks, ...
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Beautiful Things

posted on May 13

Beautiful Things Let them thank the LORD for his steadfast love, for his wonderful works to humankind. Psalm 107:15 Back in the winter, I was going through some boxes of “treasures” from my childrens’...
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Reflections on 65 Years of Full Clergy Rights For Women in the UMC

posted on May 04

Reflections on 65 Years of Full Clergy Rights For Women in the UMC: Dedicated to The Rev. Dr. Nancy Burgin Rankin   …an obligation is laid on me, and woe to me if I do not proclaim the Gospel.     ...
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The Fig Tree...and Bearing Good Fruit

posted on April 27

"In the morning, walking along the road, they saw the fig tree, shriveled to a dry stick. Peter, remembering what had happened the previous day, said to him, “Rabbi, look—the fig tree you cursed is ...
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Observing Justice

posted on April 21

Observing Justice   “Happy are those who observe justice, who do righteousness at all times.” ~ Psalm 106:3   Psalm 106 is a complex litany of confession, lament, and hope. It summarizes all the ...
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Equity is the quality of non-violence

posted on April 13

By: Northern Piedmont District Equity is the quality of non-violence.  This sentence packs a punch to how we live our days within the community of faith. Quality of non-violence speaks to the depths ...
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How COVID-19 (May Have) Made Me a Better Person

posted on March 30

How COVID-19 (May Have) Made Me a Better Person God has made everything beautiful in its time.  God has also set eternity in the human heart; yet  no one can fathom what God has done from beginning ...
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Holy Week...Quiet Wednesday

posted on March 29

Holy Week...Quiet Wednesday Quiet Wednesday…that is what some Biblical scholars refer to the Wednesday of Holy week.  We are quite familiar with Jesus’ activities beginning on Palm Sunday with His ...
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Updated COVID-19 Guidelines for In-Person Worship & Ministry

posted on March 26

Update 03-26-2021: The North Carolina Department of Health & Human Services (NCDHHS) updated their Interim Guidance for Places of Worship and Religious Services today. We have had a few questions, so ...
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The Judgment Seat: Then, Now, and Later

posted on March 19

The Judgment Seat: Then, Now, and Later   “For all of us must appear before the judgment seat of Christ,  so that each may receive recompense for what has been done in the body, whether good or evil....
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A House of Healing

posted on March 09

My favorite part of “The Lord of the Rings” literary work did not make it in the movie. I was quite bummed to invest in the lengthy movies and not have my favorite part played out on film.  When I ...
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Always Give Thanks

posted on March 09

Always Give Thanks Always give thanks to God the Father for everything in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. ~ Ephesians 5:20 (CEB) Gratitude is a spiritual discipline that I try very hard to live ...
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I Believe in the Light

posted on March 02

I Believe in the Light “While you have the light, believe in the light, that you may become sons of light.” And Jesus cried out and said, “Whoever believes in me, believes not in me but in him who ...
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COVID-19 Update for Local Churches

posted on February 25

Dear Friends, Please find below a brief update from our Bishop and Cabinet regarding in-person worship services and other important matters for our life together. We hope you will find this helpful, ...
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Lent As a Season for Sanctification

posted on February 16

Lent As a Season for Sanctification Read Matthew 5:43-48   “Be ye therefore perfect, as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.”  – Matthew 5:48 (KJV)   Many of us shrink from the idea of ...
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Ash Wednesday

posted on February 15

There is no greater pleasure for me than being warmed on a cold wintry day in front of my Glascock wood burning stove. The crackling of the wood, the dance of the flames, encircled by the warmth ...
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A Tale of Two Men...

posted on February 14

A Tale of Two Men... This is the tale of two men, born centuries apart, but who shared a mighty faith and, oddly enough, a date, February 14. One died on that date and the other was born. But it’s ...
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Living in the Midst of Generosity

posted on February 02

Living in the Midst of Generosity   “Some give freely, yet grow all the richer…” (Proverbs 11:24)   Many of you were kind to reach out yesterday, as I acknowledged on social media the twentieth ...
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Claiming Biblical Promises in Times of Change

posted on January 19

Claiming Biblical Promises in Times of Change   And all of you must clothe yourselves with humility in your dealings with one another, for “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” ...
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Another Road: A Season of Epiphany in the USA

posted on January 07

Another Road: A Season of Epiphany in the USA   And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they left for their own country by another road. ~Matthew 2:12 (NRSV)   I have preached MANY ...
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Dancing in the Light

posted on January 05

An illuminating discovery, realization, or disclosure is the definition of epiphany…the iconic light bulb going off over your head!  Christians celebrate Epiphany on January 6, which is 12 days after...
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Are you a-coming or a-going?

posted on December 31

Ever feel like you don’t know if you’re a-coming or a-going?  New beginnings sometimes create a whirl of activities…there are decisions to be made, new opportunities to seize, behaviors to adapt that...
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Opening Our Windows: Letting Out the Old and Letting in the New

posted on December 29

Opening Our Windows: Letting Out the Old and Letting in the New   And the one who was seated on the throne, said, “See, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this, for these words are ...
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A Connectional Christmas Special!

posted on December 23

Click on Image to start YouTube video! Enjoy! Dear Friends,   Receive the gift of this “Christmas Special” produced to share the message and ministries of our local United Methodist colleges and ...
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Love Came Down at Christmas

posted on December 20

The house is about 100 years old.  It shows. It’s my grandpa and grandma Morphis’ house, the one I had the privilege of growing up in.  Memories and life’s lessons that I learned from my grandparents...
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Against Unlit Candles: Lessons Learned in 2020

posted on December 18

Against Unlit Candles: Lessons Learned in 2020 “…by paths they have not known I will guide them. I will turn the darkness before them into light, the rough places into level ground. These are the ...
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I've Got the Joy, Joy, Joy, Joy

posted on December 13

Luke 2:10-11; Psalm 30:11-12 I’ve got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart…WHERE?...down in my heart…WHERE?...down in my heart…a song I sang as a child with loud enthusiasm…truth be known, I still ...
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Love and Good Deeds: Reimagining Christmas in the Church

posted on December 04

Love and Good Deeds: Reimagining Christmas in the Church “And let us consider how to provoke one another to love and good deeds..."  ~ Hebrews 10:25a  I feel led by the Holy Spirit to share a brief ...
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We Wait with Hope

posted on November 30

I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, and in his word I put my hope. I wait for the Lord more than watchmen wait for the morning, more than watchmen wait for the morning. Israel, put your hope in...
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Living Honorably This Advent

posted on November 25

Living Honorably This Advent The night is far spent, and the day is at hand…                                                                           -Romans 13:12 (KJV)   The New Testament never ...
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Covid-19 Update for Local Churches - November 23, 2020

posted on November 23

Dear Friends, We just want to keep you up to date on information that we have learned today from the Governor's Office, and the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS): ...
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We gather together…sorta

posted on November 23

This Thanksgiving, Covid continues to interrupt our lives, causing us to lament once again as a cherished holiday that is filled with tradition, family, and yummy yummy food has been altered and ...
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Covid-19 Update for Local Churches

posted on November 18

  Dear Friends, Please find below some new and critical information from our NC Department of Health and Human Services about the rising COVID-19 numbers across our state. We ask that you take a VERY ...
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Updated Guidelines for In-Person Worship & Ministry during COVID-19

posted on November 12

Hi Friends,   We hope your inboxes are the only things in your life that are experiencing flooding right now! I realize we have sent you many important updates this week.    Below please find updated ...
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One Day at a Time

posted on November 10

One Day at a Time    The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases,  His mercies never come to an end;  they are new every morning;  great is your faithfulness.                                          ...
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Voting, Without a Sharp Spirit

posted on October 29

Voting, Without a Sharp Spirit   Our Methodist heritage has always been one of civic-mindedness and good citizenship. In 1774, John Wesley himself offered wisdom on voting, that included three ...
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Becoming a Trauma-Informed Faith Community

posted on October 18

You are invited to join Partners in Health and Wholeness and the Northern Piedmont District of the Western North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church for “Becoming a Trauma-Informed ...
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Updated Gathering Recommendations from WNCC Cabinet

posted on October 05

Dear Friends,   Linked and shown below you will find some updated gathering recommendations from our WNCC Cabinet. We are staying faithful to North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services ...
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Growing Leaders Growing Leaders

posted on September 24

Growing Leaders Growing Leaders As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were ...
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Updated Guidelines for In-Person Worship & Ministry during COVID-19

posted on September 08

  Dear Friends,   As you may have already seen on the Conference Website, we have published some updated recommendations about in-person worship during COVID-19. The information, in full, can be found...
News Article

Habakkuk: Rejoice in the Lord!

posted on September 04

Disappointment…outrage…bewilderment…devastation…heartache…Habakkuk’s gamut of emotions that he felt toward God upon learning the discipline God had chosen for the unfaithful Israelites that involved ...
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2020 Charge Conference Information

posted on September 04

2020 Charge Conferences To:  Pastors, Church Council Chairpersons, Church Secretaries, and Pastor Parish Committee Chairpersons (Please share information as appropriate in your local church with ...
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The Task of “Waiting-Waiting”

posted on August 14

The Task of “Waiting-Waiting”   “I waited patiently for the Lord…” (Psalm 40:1a)   I am reading through the Psalms this year as a part of my morning devotions. I never could have predicted on ...
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Getting the Help You Need

posted on July 22

GETTING THE HELP YOU NEED   “Come unto me, all you that are weary and carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28   I recently had the pleasure of taking part in a virtual Word...
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Living with Joy!

posted on July 12

The apostle Paul ministered at Philippi during his second missionary journey, spending about three months in the city. Paul did not write Philippians in response to a crisis, as he did with Galatians...
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Updated Guidelines for In-Person Worship & Ministry During COVID-19

posted on June 30

Dear Friends,   Thank you for your questions about next faithful steps during the COVID-19 pandemic. I took your concerns to the Cabinet meeting, and below you will find a link to recommendations ...
News Article

Remembering Juneteenth

posted on June 16

Remembering Juneteenth Dear Friends,   Below please find a video with a wonderful time of sharing from the Revs. Rod and Tammy Ingram, sharing with us the history of Juneteenth. We hope you can share ...
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A Pastoral Letter, and A Summons

posted on June 05

Dear Friends, Please find some recent Episcopal letters to encourage and bolster you in your ministry this weekend. Wishing you a bright and bountiful weekend of worship and service. Looking ...
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What Can You Do?

posted on June 01

What Can You Do?   “If it is possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.” Romans 12:18 (NRSV)   Words are one of my great joys in life, but I’ve struggled to find words to ...
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A call to grieve and honor those who have died from COVID-19

posted on May 26

Dear Friends,   We have moved into a period of this pandemic where we have reached the marker of 100,000 deaths. It is truly a momentous time, and we ask that you take time this Sunday to mark this ...
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Phase Two Guidelines for In-Person Worship & Ministry During COVID-19

posted on May 21

From WNCC Bishop & Cabinet: Phase Two Guidelines for In-Person Worship & Ministry During COVID-19 As the state of North Carolina prepares to enter Phase Two, the Cabinet has updated our Conference ...
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COVID Update from WNCC Bishop & Cabinet

posted on May 20

Hi Friends,   I want to reach out and share a few updates: Our Governor is releasing next steps for "reopening" our economy. Please be aware that this does NOT mean that the Western North Carolina ...
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Love Your Neighbor...Resources & Ideas to Consider

posted on May 16

Resources and Ideas to consider... I have been participating in a variety of webinars lately as we work to resource and assist local churches, clergy, and laity. A particularly good one this week was...
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In the "In-Between" Times

posted on May 01

In the “In-Between” Times   Each day we have a choice to be a person of kindness to ourselves and the world or find ourselves hiding in the empty tomb in fear.  As I find my way out of the tomb, I ...
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After the Quarantine: An Argument Against An Overscheduled And Under-Authentic Church

posted on April 25

After the Quarantine: An Argument Against An Overscheduled And Under-Authentic Church “So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become ...
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Celebrate a zip-a-dee-doo-dah Easter day, Easter people!

posted on April 12

I never related much to Mary Magdalene personally until this Easter Sunday morning.  For more than 50 years, Easter tradition at my church began early…4:30am for choir members with the cantata at ...
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The Life of the World to Come

posted on April 07

The Life of the World to Come   “We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come.” -The Nicene Creed   One of the best gifts Christian parents can give their children is ...
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The Top Twelve Things I Have Learned During Lent 2020

posted on April 07

The Top Twelve Things I Have Learned During Lent 2020   It’s been six weeks since I opened the Lenten Season with a sermon and the imposition of ashes on a clear evening at Mount Carmel UMC in ...
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Update from SBA on Paycheck Protection Program and Faith-Based Organizations

posted on April 04

Important Update Regarding SBA Funding Opportunities for Faith-Based Organizations Last night, the Small Business Administration issued a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document for ...
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IMPORTANT Update on CARES Paycheck Protection Program

posted on April 01

IMPORTANT Update on CARES Paycheck Protection Program   We have received updated information that you are NOT required to have a charge conference to apply for this loan.  Please do make sure that...
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Important Opportunity for Local Churches: SBA Paycheck Protection Program

posted on April 01

Dear Friends, We urge you to closely read this article, which was published by Forbes magazine: $349 Billion In Forgivable Paycheck Protection Loans For Nonprofits. Here’s How To Apply  "The $2 ...
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Greeting from Bev Coppley, District Superintendent - April 1, 2020

posted on April 01

A greeting and message from Rev. Bev Coppley, Northern Piedmont District Superintendent, shared on April 1, 2020. “The Sturdy Dreamers” Rev. Bev Coppley April 1, 2020   Mark 10:32-40   They ...
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For the Birds

posted on March 30

For the Birds   “…let birds fly above the earth across the dome of the sky.” -Genesis 1:20   When I think of all I hope to remember positively about this time in history, I think about the birds. ...
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COVID-19 Resources for Your Local Church

posted on March 21

RESOURCES FOR LOCAL CONGREGATIONS - COVID-19 Updated April 6, 2020 Click here to get to our Northern Piedmont COVID-19 Resource page Conference and District Staffs are working remotely now. The best ...
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Northern Piedmont COVID-19 Update - March 20, 2020

posted on March 19

Graceful Contact   Dear Friends,   Communication and contact among people has never been easy and there is always room to grow to communicate better. We have different ways of expression with sharing...
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Northern Piedmont COVID-19 Update - March 17, 2020

posted on March 17

Hi Friends,   Our Western North Carolina Conference and District Offices have been asked to implement additional governmental COVID-19 precautions by working remotely for a period of time. Each of us...
News Article

COVID-19: Message from Bishop Leeland

posted on March 12

Hi Friends, Please read the important letter from Bishop Paul Leeland shown below regarding precautions around the spread of the COVID-19 virus. As always, we are available in the District Office to ...
News Article

Preparing your Church for COVID-19

posted on March 11

How is your church preparing for COVID-19? Dear Friends, We in your District Office join you in concerns for health and well-being during this flu season and in this time of uncertainty about the ...
News Article

Tornadoes in Tennessee - Compassion & Solidarity

posted on March 10

We have all been pained by the news of the devastating EF-4 tornado in the Caney Fork River District of the Tennessee Conference. It has been inspiring to see Early Response Teams (ERTs) at work and ...
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Living as Those Who Are Prepared to Die: A Reflection for Lent

posted on March 02

Living as Those Who Are Prepared to Die: A Reflection for Lent “Help us to live as those who are prepared to die…”   There is a line in one of our funeral prayers in the United Methodist Book of ...
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POSTPONED: Helping Your Congregation Prepare for General Conference: An Event for Clergy & Laity

posted on February 19

Update on March 17, 2020: This event has been POSTPONED. The future date is to be determined. Northern Piedmont District Helping Your Congregation Prepare for General Conference:  An Event for ...
News Article

Means of Grace: Growing in Racial Awareness

posted on February 19

Check out this Means of Grace podcast, with Rev. Rodvegas Ingram (Memorial UMC), Rev. Tom Latimer (Jamestown UMC) and Rev. Maria King (NP District Vitality Associate) of the Northern Piedmont District...
News Article

Local Church Resources

posted on January 23

Dear Friends,   I am reaching out to say thanks to all of you for your connectional spirit in this new year. It has been my joy in December and January to conduct clergy consultations and to begin the...
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All Shall Be Well

posted on January 10

Wellness … In All Manner of Things Reflections on The Protocol of Reconciliation and Grace Through Separation   “…all manner of things shall be well.” -Julian of Norwich, Showings   I’ll begin by ...
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At Your Merriest

posted on December 14

At Your Merriest “And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace among those whom he favors!...
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Northern Piedmont Equipping Seminars

posted on December 09

Coming in Early 2020... Northern Piedmont District Equipping Seminars! Greetings in the name of Christ, We are pleased to offer Equipping Seminars for pastors and your local church officers who serve...
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An Expression of Thanksgiving

posted on November 14

An Expression of Thanksgiving   “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”  1 Thessalonians 5:18 I suppose today’s ...
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Truth and Reconciliation in Northern Piedmont

posted on October 29

by Rev. Maria King, Northern Piedmont District Vitality Associate   In 2016, the Northern Piedmont District Vitality Team set a priority for the district to confront white supremacy and racism in ...
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Become Like Children

posted on October 09

Become Like Children “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever becomes humble like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of...
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I Can't Wait / I Will Wait: Adventures in Waiting

posted on September 16

I Can’t Wait / I Will Wait: Adventures in Waiting   “I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, and in his word I put my hope.” Psalm 130:5 (NIV)   Like many of us, I have a “go-to” music playlist. ...
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Fall 2019 Charge Conference Information

posted on September 04

CHARGE CONFERENCES – FALL 2019 – NORTHERN PIEDMONT DISTRICT Complete instructions for our Fall 2019 Charge Conferences are available on our website at:  https://www.northernpiedmontumc.org/2019charge...
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The Superintendent’s Pilgrimage

posted on August 28

The Superintendent’s Pilgrimage   “O taste and see that the Lord is good; Happy are those who take refuge in him.” -Psalm 34:8   I hope my email finds you all settling into the routine of a new school...
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New Kids In Town

posted on July 09

New Kids In Town   There's talk on the street; it sounds so familiar. Great expectations, everybody's watching you. People you meet, they all seem to know you. Even your old friends treat you like ...
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A Sunday of Solidarity for Suffering Children

posted on June 28

As a church that is united on the need to care for children, we can be in mission together. This Sunday, June 30, Global Ministries encourages you to take part in A Sunday of Solidarity for Suffering...
News Article

News from Annual Conference 2019

posted on June 23

News from Annual Conference 2019, concluded June 23, 2019 at Lake Junaluska.
News Article

Annual Conference - Be Informed, Prayerful, and Present!

posted on June 11

Dear Clergy and Laity Members of our Annual Conference, I appreciate your important role in next week's session of the WNC Annual Conference at Stuart Auditorium at beautiful Lake Junaluska. The ...
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Near to the Heart

posted on May 09

Near to the Heart   Rescue me in weakness of mind When distraction conquers me Keep me in your shadow, oh Lord Give me grace to follow where You lead Keep me near your heart… Keep Me Near, Rend ...
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