Global Ministries

The United Methodist Church

Connecting the Church in Mission

Global Ministries - ConnectNMission
February 3, 2016 · Issue 3

This issue of connectNmission highlights General Board of Global Ministries Missionary Belinda Forbes and her work with communities in Nicaragua; provides resources for Lent and Easter; spotlights Missionary Matthew Laferty’s work in offering hospitality to immigrants and refugees arriving in Europe from conflict areas, and lists upcoming events.

Dr.Belinda Forbes (center) oversees a dental worker in training.
During last December’s UMC #GivingTuesday event, Dr. Belinda Forbes, a Global Ministries missionary serving Acción Medica Cristiana (AMC) in Nicaragua, received the most online donations as a missionary, totaling more than $14,000. To celebrate that honor, Forbes was awarded an additional $10,000 from Global Ministries, which she will use to fill funding gaps at AMC.

Forbes said, “I want to thank Global Ministries and our donors for the ongoing support of our work, and for giving me the opportunity to fulfill my role to be a light to the world by following God’s call to serve.”

Read more about Forbes’ work with AMC, and learn how local communities are being empowered to identify and respond to the root problems that impact their health.

crown with thorns.
Although it may seem as if 2016 has just begun, the season of Lent is already upon us.

This year, Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, February 10, 2016. It is a season of penance and prayer before the observance of Easter Sunday, March 27.

A number of Lenten and Easter resources are available to help prepare your heart for the season ahead. The faith-filled resources will help you reflect, repent, and turn your focus toward God.

Browse through numerous articles and/or devotions on fasting, healing, and faith, and dive right into available worship resources and Lenten preaching notes offered through Discipleship Ministries in light of Black History Month 2016.

There are also several video choices for viewing that discuss the significance of this season.

“We have been called by God to reach out in love, to reach out to the least of these,” says United Methodist Missionary Matthew Laferty, currently serving as pastor of the English-Speaking United Methodist Church in Vienna, Austria, about his church’s response to the influx of immigrants and refugees arriving in Europe from conflict areas.

The English-Speaking United Methodist Church is providing a safe refuge by offering hot meals, a bed, and much-needed hospitality.

Watch the video to learn more.


Monday, Feb. 8; Thursday, Feb. 25; Thursday, March 3

"When Mercy and Justice Meet: Advocacy for Clergy and Congregations"
Time: 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. (EST)

This three-session online course offered by Drew Theological School will guide clergy and laity who are interested in advocacy through each step of building a dynamic grassroots campaign that addresses a key issue or concern in their community. Each session will provide the practical steps needed to develop and execute an action plan, including building partnerships, setting goals, engaging volunteers, and working with policymakers. Katey Zeh will lead the sessions.

Discount registration deadline—March 15, 2016
Sowing Seeds - Caretakers of God's Creation Conference
April 8–9, 2016
First United Methodist Church, Decatur, Georgia

This year’s event will focus is on food and food systems. Keynote speakers include Norman Wirzba of Duke University, Jennifer Ayres of Emory University's Candler School of Theology, and Alice Rolls of Georgia Organics. Scholarships are available.

Discount registration deadline—March 16, 2016
Congregational Care Ministry Seminar
April 7–9, 2016

This event is designed for pastors and church staff looking to become congregational care ministers. The gathering will be at Church of the Resurrection, 13720 Roe Ave., Leawood, Kansas. Topics include prayer, theology of care, boundaries, listening, visitation, death and grief, and organization. The discount cost of $160 is available until March 16.
Photo credits in order of appearance: Belinda Forbes; Kathleen Barry/UMNS, and Paul Jeffrey.