Monday, November 24, 2014

United Methodist Student Day November 30

United Methodist Student Day is November 30, 2014. Giving Tuesday is December 2, 2014.

Across the country, the people of the United Methodist Church are serving the people God loves in Jesus’ name. We’re doing it at home, but so often we’d like to do more. And we can; not just for one Sunday but any and every day.
  • We want to serve those in other places who are suffering.
  • We want to offer spiritual words of hope and life.
  • And we want to be well-equipped to do both!
But the reality for most of us is that our responsibilities—home, family, work—don’t allow us to engage with every need we’d like to meet.
Right now there are UMC young people—who might not have had the resources to attend a school of their choice, or, for some, any school at all—who’ve been sent by you into the world God loves because of your giving to United Methodist Student Day. When you give generously you are support these students as they prepare for a life that unites faith with knowledge.
What no one person or congregation can do alone, we’re doing together.

Text taken from UMC Giving website. Go to the official page here to learn more and donate:

Native American Heritage Month - November

Although we are nearing the end of this important month of November, let's take a few minutes to remember that this is Native American Heritage Month and chastise ourselves (I know I'm doing so right now) for so often forgetting the Native peoples of the Americas and the many proud cultures that now wait in marginalization for the days of equality to come.

Here below I include the Native American Creed. For more resources look at these pages:
Native American Creed
by The Rev. Roger Scott
I believe in God, Creator of our unique native languages,
Who gifted us this identity as a distinct people through
our native tongues,
so that our native spiritual leaders could relay God's love
to our native people who could not understand
that foreign tongue called English.

I believe in Jesus Christ, our relative,
Who talked of us when he said, "I have other sheep out there,
besides those I have here."
I believe in Jesus Christ who knew the pain of our native
people who were forced from their homeland and had no
place to lay their head.
I believe in Jesus Christ as our Chief Cornerstone as we
begin to build a new generation of native spiritual leaders.
I believe in Jesus Christ who does not say "goodbye"
in any language, but says "I will come again."

I believe in the Holy Spirit as tongues of fire
lighting upon our native people to witness to their people
and to the world, through the native song and dance.
I believe in the Holy Spirit as our guide and the
driving force for our native people to do a new thing
as we walk a new journey, toward perfection for all

The Rev. Roger Scott is a member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. His poetic interpretation of Luke 2:8-11 draws upon his experiences from the pow wow culture within Native America.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Christ the King Sunday - November 23, 2014

This Sunday marks the close of Ordinary Time after Pentecost, as well as the conclusion of the “standard” Christian liturgical year. This day was first celebrated by the Roman Catholic Church in 1925 in response to attempts by governments in Mexico and elsewhere to declare themselves the ultimate authority in the lives and even the religions of their subjects. 

The image above of the Church of Christ the King in Guanajuato, Mexico, captures the celebration of the Mexican people set free from a period of oppression as a sign of Christ the King who looses every bond, breaks every yoke, and sets captives free.

Today functions as is a “segue Sunday.” After today, we move from the end of one liturgical year to the beginning of the next, from Ordinary Time to Advent, from readings in Matthew to readings in Mark.

All good segues create both closure and room for a new opening. Starting next week, with a different gospel, the focus may start to be more on how awareness of the end of all things prepares us for the celebration of the Incarnation that we keep during Christmas Season.

Guest Speaker MEN's Day - Rev. Richard d. Winn, Sr.

November 9th Sherman UMC had the honor of hosting Rev. Richard Winn, Sr. District Superintendent of the Griffin District of the North Georgia Conference.

Reverend Richard Don Winn, Sr., who was previously the beloved and always thankful Senior Pastor of Ben Hill United Methodist Church was born and raised in Chicago, IL. He is the fourth of six children and is an identical twin.

Pastor Winn graduated from Chicago's Parker high School. He received a B.A. in Sociology from Southern Illinois University, and in 1976, Rev. Winn received his Masters of Divinity from Gammon Theological Seminary. Rev. Winn's pastoral ministry began at Maple Park UMC in Chicago. In 1979 BishopWilliam Cannon invited Rev. Winn to serve in the North Georgia Conference (NGC)of the UMC. Since that time he has served Bowen UMC, Clifton, UMC, Hoosier Memorial UMC, and Warren Memorial UMC.

Pastor Winn has served on the Committee of Episcopacy in the NGC; as Chairperson of the District Committee on Superintendency, Atlanta-College Park District; spent more than 25 years as Secretary to the NGC; and has served as Secretary of Religion and Race. For 4 consecutive years Rev Winn has presented at Rock Eagle UM Men's Retreat. He has preached in every region in the US and is presently planning an African preaching tour. Rev. Winn is currently District Superintendent of the Griffin District of the NGC: his tenure began July 1, 2013.

His wife Vernita is a retired Social Worker of the Atlanta Public School System. They have a son, Richard Jr. an Atlanta Public School teacher, and are proud grandparents of three granddaughters.

Professional/Civic Affiliations and Expert Panels
Rev. Winn is involved in the community through the participation as a member of the Executive Committee - Atlanta Area Council Boy Scouts of America; Chairperson, C.A.S.C.A.D.E. Community Drug Preventions and Education; a life member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, the American Cancer Society, the March of Dimes; and has served on a search committee for Chaplain at Clark Atlanta University.

Honors and Awards
G. Ross Freeman Leadership Award (UMC)
Whitney M. Young Award (Boy Scouts of America)
African American Preacher's Award
Southern Illinois Think Tank
Emory University Kellogg Fellow

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Guest Speaker October 26 - Lorraine Morton - Former Evanston Mayor

Though Lorraine has made her home in Evanston since 1953, she was born in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. She came to Evanston to attend Northwestern University where she met her future husband, James T. Morton, Jr., who was completing his requirements for a Ph.D degree. Lorraine received her MA in curriculum development from Northwestern at the same ceremony in which her husband received his Ph.D in clinical psychology. They married and were blessed with the birth of a daughter, Elizabeth Elinor, who is the mother of Lorraine’s granddaughters, Elizabeth Keziah Brasher and Constance Mariah Brasher.

Lorraine’s professional employment in Evanston began as a teacher at Foster School. Later she was transferred to Nichols Middle School, followed by Chute Middle School and Haven Middle School where she was named principal. She was asked by the then mayor to fill the unexpired term of the Fifth Ward Alderman. She agreed and was both Alderman and Principal until she retired from District 65. Two years later she was asked to run for Mayor of Evanston. She accepted and remained in that position for sixteen years. Documents from the City of Evanston upon her retirement stated “Her tenure has been marked by responsiveness, integrity, and care. She represents Evanstonians with civility, grace, and respect......and as an energetic ambassador at events in every corner of our town and in organizations at the regional, state, and national level. She is a strong and enthusiastic advocate for our city.”

Former Mayor Lorraine is very proud of her services to District 65 and to her community. She was very active in many endeavors and received many awards too numerous to record here. She has, however, expressed her appreciation for receiving honorary doctorates from the then Kendal College and Northwestern University. Yet, she relates to all her pride in the contributions she was able to make to the citizens of Evanston. In recognition of her services, the Evanston City Council renamed Evanston City Hall the Lorraine Hairston Morton Civic Center.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Guest Speaker October 19th - Pastor Dr. B. Herbert Martin, Sr.

Sherman UMC in Evanston, IL has the great pleasure and honor to welcome Pastor Dr. B. Herbert Martin, Sr. to speak at Sherman's 92nd Anniversary celebration 10:30 am on Sunday October 19th 2014

Dr. B. Herbert Martin, Sr., Pastor, Progressive Community Center, The People’s Church has over 47 years of pastoral and related experience, with more than 46 years of ministry work in the Chicago area. Pastor Martin was licensed to preach the Gospel, February 22, 1966 at Bethel AME Church in Little Rock, Arkansas, ordained to the Order of Deacon June, 1970 and ordained Elder in the Baptist Church and to the Order of Elder, June 10, 1973 in the United Methodist Church, Northern Illinois Annual Conference.
Pastor Martin was born in Mound Bayou, Mississippi, the oldest and largest black town in the USA. He is sibling to five sisters and four brothers. He has five children, six grandchildren and one great-granddaughter. He received his Bachelor of Science degree from Philander Smith College, Little Rock, Arkansas in 1967. In 1971 he earned the Master of Divinity degree from Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. He was awarded the Doctor of Humane Letters (Honoris Causa) in 1986 from Monrovia College, Liberia, West Africa. In 2009 Pastor Martin earned his Doctor of Ministry Degree from McCormick Theological Seminary, Chicago Illinois and the Doctor of Divinity from Chicago (Honoris Causa) Theological Seminary. He has been a civil and human rights activist since 1955 and a leader for African American unity and self-determination all his adult life. Pastor Martin is a tenacious activist for global citizenship and the building of a beloved community.
Pastor Martin has served as Executive Secretary NAACP, Southside Branch; Chairman of the Chicago Housing Authority, under the administration of Honorable Mayor Harold Washington. He has served as Executive Director of the Chicago Commission on Human Relations; President of the NAACP - Southside Branch; where he led membership enrollment from 5,000 to 25,000 and raised over $1 million dollars for the Freedom Fund. He was appointed by Governor Edgar to the Human Services Reform task force for the State of Illinois, and in 1995, he was inducted into the Martin Luther King Jr. International Board of Preachers at Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia. He has serves as a board member for the Ounce of Prevention Fund, the Bronzeville Children’s Museum, Progressive Day Care and Early Childhood Development Center, the Chicago Community Loan Fund, the Martin Marty Center University of Chicago Divinity School, the Illinois Advisory Council of the United States Commission on Civil Rights, Board of Trustees for East West University, Chairman of World Crisis Intervention Network, member of the Council for Global Affairs, a member of the Council of Religious Leaders of Metropolitan Chicago, member of the Interfaith Global Initiative in partnership with The Jordanian Interfaith Coexistence Research Center under the leadership of Father Nabil Haddad of Amanda, Jordan, a member of North Star Masonic Lodge Free Masonry, a member of the Phi Beta Sigma National Fraternity and a member of the Alpha Phi Omega National Service Fraternity Incorporated.
Pastor Martin is a prolific writer. He has authored numerous articles and pamphlets and has several publication merits. Some of his writings are: Fasting and Prayer Ministry (A Model for Physical, Intellectual and Spiritual Healing); Tithing: Serious Biblical Giving and New Membership, Recruitment, Training, Assimilation and Discipleship. He is a much sought after
speaker, preacher and lecturer with topics that whet the inspirational appetite - Saving the Seed; Endangered Species: the Black Male; What Do You Have God Can Use? Stewardship of Time, Talent and Treasure; The Awesomeness of God: A Study of the Attributes of God (Holiness, Justice, Mercy, Love) and What’s Hindering the Cushite? - An Examination of issues Confronting Africans in the North American African Diaspora.
Pastor Martin is a clergy in good standing with the International Council of Community Churches, Inc. and has been adjunct professor at the University of Chicago Divinity School, McCormick Theological Seminary, North Park Theological Seminary, Seminary Consortium for Urban Pastoral Education, Northern Baptist Theological Seminary; guest lecturer at University of Illinois, Champaign Urbana; Philander Smith College, Little Rock, Arkansas, Bierzeat University, Palestine, University of Chicago Medical Center and the University of Tel a Viv, Israel. He is a member of the Council of Religious leaders of Metropolitan Chicago. Pastor Martin is the founder and organizer of the Progressive Institute for Biblical Studies and Leadership Formation, Inc.; the founder and organizer of the Progressive School for Prayer and Prophecy and the founder of the Progressive Boys to Men Mentoring Ministry, Founder and President of the National Progressive Institute for Community Development, Inc., President and CEO of Martin LLC, a local organization with a global perspective and business development consultant for Paradigm, a company that delivers exceptional outcomes through catastrophic specialty networks.
It is obvious Pastor Martin’s gifts are too numerous to be contained in only one country or one continent. His evangelical influence is international, inter-faith and cross-cultural spanning several continents and countries: Africa, Asia, Europe, South America, Canada, the Caribbean Crescent and the Middle East. His committed service to the Chicago Center for Cultural Connections Inc. is one expression of his inter-faith activities where he serves as Senior Advisor to the Executive Director. In addition he is a founding member of The Interfaith Global Peace Initiative. This initiative is a network of inter-religious business, education and media leaders. His commitment and diligent effort to develop a global vision of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the Great Commission has reaped great fruit. He has mentored 12 men and women into active Christian ministry in the USA and abroad. Presently, under his leadership at Progressive Community Church there are more than 10 young men and women examining the “call” of God on their lives. He continues to inspire the members of Progressive Community Church and others to consider Christian vocations in their careers objectives.
Pastor Martin’s Thesis for the Doctorate of Ministry Degree at McCormick Theological Seminary concentrated on developing a “Model of a Center for Healing Ebony Kinships through Transatlantic Re-Engagement between Indigenous and Diasporic Africans.” This Center will be built on 40 acres of ocean front property near the Gulf of Guinea that Pastor Martin purchased. The land is called Oyeadzeyie Estates, being named after Pastor Martin’s African name, Kodjo Oyeadzeyie which means Monday-born man one who settles disputes, creates order and brings peace He envisions the work of The Center to be a place to help reconcile differences between the three Abrahamic religious traditions as well as all religious communities on the globe
Not included in this biography are the many civic and political activities of Pastor Martin during the 1980s and 1990s. Pastor Martin was very active during the Honorable Harold Washington
Administration. He provided pastoral care and support to Mayor Washington and became known as the Mayor’s Pastor” and “The Pastor to the City of Chicago and Vicinity speaking truth to power.”

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Children's Sabbath - October 12th

Children’s Sabbath 2014
by Melanie Gordon

The Children's Sabbath, whether celebrated the weekend of October 10 or 17, "is a weekend that aims to unite religious congregations of all faiths across the nation in shared concern for children and common commitment to improving their lives and working for justice on their behalf." This year's theme is "Precious in God's Sight: Answering the Call to Cherish and Protect Every Child." As United Methodists, our roots rest in the care for those who are vulnerable, especially children. During this important weekend we join with other denominations and religions to bring to light the plight of children in a "bigger and more powerful and more inspiring way than the efforts of any one congregation" or denomination can accomplish on its own.

Monday, October 6, 2014

National Day of Prayer Tues. Oct 7

Tuesday, October 7th is a National Day of Prayer for Mental Illness Recovery and Understanding. This observance is part of Mental Illness Awareness Week (the first full week of October each year).

In your own devotions, stop to take a second look at your own understanding of mental illness. What does "mental illness" mean? The phrase is vague. Many persons with "mental illness" live lives we would consider normal, as capable as those not stamped with the "mental illness" label. These persons need prayer as much as the rest of us but not pity. Spare a prayer for them that they escape the stigma of "disease".

Spare a prayer for those whose condition does bring them suffering and confusion - mild or severe. May the Lord especially be with all those in another's care. May that care keep them safe. Pray for those who provide care - whether professionals or family. Care is a hard task when faced every day. Some are and some are not equipped to handle the strain.

On Tuesday and on any other day, spare a prayer for those with mental illness - mild or severe - for those whose role is support and care, and for the people of world to learn and understand.

Friday, October 3, 2014

A Season of Saints

Throughout the month of October the global Church will celebrate the great cloud of witnesses - the saints that make up the Body of Christ's Church. The following excerpts are taken from the UMC lectionary planning calendar worship suggestions for October:
Each week, we’re asking you to consider highlighting, in some way, an historical Christian saint, a saint who is part of our United Methodist heritage, and a saint you know personally in your congregation or community. You can remember them in prayers, create special bulletin inserts, or Tweet links about them during the week between Sundays. Exactly how you keep this season is yours to create and have fun with.
Suggestions for each Sunday:
In addition to these people (I listed them below) plan also to recognize at least two other saints: one from your congregation and one from another congregation. To help you share your stories and find stories of others, we've set up a page describing this project on the United Methodist Worship blog. Just leave your story in the comments section. 
     And personally, I would assume a special person - a "saint" we hold dear - need not be dead to be celebrated. But that's just me...

October 5: World Communion Sunday
                  Christian Saint: Francis of Assisi (died October 4, 1226)
                  United Methodist Saint: Mary McLeod Bethune (died May 18, 1955)
October 12: Children's Sabbath
                  Christian Saint: John Woolman
                  United Methodist Saint: Jeannie Fowler Willing
October 19: Laity Sunday
                  Christian Saint: Luke the Evangelist
                  United Methodist Saint: Lizzie Hoffman
October 26: Christian Saints: Yona Kanamuzeyi and Dietrich Bonhoeffer, martyrs
                  United Methodist Saint:Sarah Crosby
November 2: All Saints Sunday
                  Christian Saint: Kahkewaquonaby (Peter Jones)
                  United Methodist Saint:Jacob Albright

Thursday, October 2, 2014

World Communion Sunday

World Communion Sunday - it is exactly what it sounds like. It was begun with the intent to mark a specific time when the ecumenical world Church celebrates communion intentionally recognizing the global truth of the Body of Christ. This makes it and inclusive endeavor by its very nature. Our focus in "the now" is equipping for ministry those persons globally who dare to go out for Christ to change the world. Excerpted from the lectionary calendar:
World Communion Sunday began in 1940, a time when most Protestant churches celebrated Communion quarterly at most, and so may rarely have celebrated on the same day. Today, the vast majority of Christians worldwide celebrate Communion weekly; and most Protestants celebrate at least once per month, most frequently on the first Sunday. The need to highlight this day as “one time when we are all celebrating together” has thus subsided. The more salient focus for the celebration now is on supporting ministry issues we share across multiple denominations across the globe—such as education for persons of many cultures worldwide.
(also to note) ... the Ecumenical Cycle of Prayer was created by the World Council of Churches to enable Christians everywhere to pray with and for the church and the world, for every nation on earth, throughout the year.  
On World Communion Sunday it is also appropriate to consider all those we may inadvertently “excommunicate” because they are unwillingly absent, marginalized, or outside our comfort zones.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

What makes October so special?

October is a month overflowing with significant events and observations. Here's a quick list of Sherman events to start:

  • October 5th - World Communion Sunday
  • October 8th - Church council
  • October 17th - Sherman welcomes the Fisk University Choir in concert in celebration of our 92nd anniversary
  • October 19th - Rev. B Herbert Martin is our guest preacher in honor of our anniversary.
Then we have the broader church and civic calendar:
  • Hispanic heritage month began Sept 15 and continues through Oct 15
  • October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month
  • Oct 5 - The Church takes up a special offering on World Communion Sunday. This year benefits national and international graduate students, enabling them to follow God equipped by higher education. click here to learn more.
  • October 6th-12th - Mental Health Awareness Week: Oct 7th - National Day of Prayer for Mental Illness Recovery and Understanding
  • October 12th - Children's Sabbath (click here)
  • Oct 19th - Laity Sunday
If that seems like a lot to take in, it should because, honestly, it is. But all the things we want to mark and observe tend to need a special place on the agenda, or we tend to forget them and how important they all are. Most are more significant to some than to others, but each is special and our personal observance holy. 

Posts will be coming soon on what each of a few of these means and how we can observe them individually and collectively.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Profile: Congratulations to Vidette Bullock Mixon, United Methodist Women Board Recording Secretary in the Office of the General Secretary

Congratulations to Vidette Bullock-Mixon
United Methodist Women Board Recording Secretary in the Office of the General Secretary

Ms. Mixon has had a 33-year career with the General Board of Pension and Health Benefits of the United Methodist Church as the Director of Corporate Relations, Investment Community - Wespath and Assistant General Secretary where she administered Wespath's $19 billion socially responsible investments program on behalf of the UMC's 91,000 employee benefit plan beneficiaries. In her work she also promoted pension fund opportunities for alternative investments that support community development and people with low and moderate incomes by representing the General Board on the United Methodist Church's taskforce on Ministry with the Poor and Communities of Shalom at Drew University Theological School. Most recently, Vidette was the recipient of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR)2013 Legacy Award.

Due to her knowledge of the United Methodist Church, its structure and polity, Vidette will be able to quickly grasp on to the most immediate of tasks as she integrates into her new function of Board Recording Secretary.
Vidette will not only be adjusting to her new position but also to her new life in New York City as she is relocating there from Evanston, IL to assist UMW in fulfilling their mission.

Profile: Rev. Michelle Watkins-Branch - Speaker Sept 7 2014

Rev. Michele Watkins Branch is a pastor-scholar-activist bred in the United Methodist Church and the Black freedom movement tradition. Rev. Michele is a proud product of the Maceo D. Pembroke, Sr. Memorial Institute for Ministerial Recruitment and Leadership Development where she answered her call to ministry at the age of 16, and for which she now serves as Dean.

On June 10, 2014, Rev. Michele was commissioned as a Provisional Elder in the Northern IL Conference of the United Methodist Church and appointed to SBC-21 (Strengthening the Black Church for the 21st Century).

As a part of her appointment to SBC-21, Rev. Michele has been locally deployed as a Clergy Intern to St. Mark United Methodist Church, Chicago IL where here ministry focuses on the spiritual formation of youth, young adults, and single parent families. Before pastoral ministry, Rev. Michele worked for over 8 years as a community organizer under her mentor, Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr. and spent the last 2 years of her tenure at Rainbow PUSH as the National College Director for PUSH Excel. She has worked as the Youth Pastor at Morgan Park UMC in Chicago, as an educator in the DC Public Charter Schools.

Rev. Michele holds a Master of Divinity degree (Theta Alpha Kappa) from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary; Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Howard University in Washington, DC (Phi Beta Kappa, Summa Cum Laude); and a Certification in Non-Profit Management from Kellogg School of Business at Northwestern University.

Wedded to both the church and the academy, as an extension of her pastoral ministry, Rev. Michele is working toward the completion of her PhD at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary in the area of Theological, Historical, and Ethical Studies. Her dissertation research focuses on constructing a holistic understanding of Christian salvation that is both spiritually and materially redemptive, particularly in a culture of violence.

Rev. Michele is married to Rev. Marlan D. Branch, an Associate Minister of St. James AME in Chicago, IL whom she proudly confesses as her soul mate and life partner in ministry. Rev. Michele is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated.

Update from Helen Roberts-Evans, Missionary to Liberia


Thank you for your continuing support during these difficult times for the people of Liberia. We are presently facing a new and huge challenge- the outbreak and spread of the Ebola virus. Due to the Ebola crisis all schools are closed. Public gatherings are banned and many market places are closed. On August 6, 2014, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf declared a 90-day State of Emergency. In her address to the nation, the President said that the probable, suspected and confirmed cases of Ebola in Liberia have exceeded 500 with 271 deaths including 32 deaths among health workers. The number of infected persons and deaths continues to grow each day.

Although many hospitals are now closed as they cannot cope with the crisis, Ganta United Methodist Hospital remains open and has experienced 2 confirmed Ebola virus deaths. The Ministry of Health recently provided supplies to the hospital through our church's Department of Health and Social Welfare. The supplies include bleach for disinfecting, gloves, and disposable screening suits.

UMCOR provided a grant of $5,000.00 through the UMC Liberia’s Department of Health and Social Welfare. These funds were used to purchase supplies for Ganta Hospital and various UMC clinics. Please pray that people will accept the fact that the Ebola virus is real, that people will refrain from handling infected persons without protective gear, that there will be improved and more effective Ebola response teams, and traditional burial practices will be curtailed to prevent spreading the virus.

Global Ministries offered missionaries serving in Liberia and Sierra Leone the option of leaving the country if we decided to do so. I opted to return to the United States. While here, I plan to continue to contribute to our United Methodist support efforts. I arrived in New York City on August 18, 2014. My tentative plan is to remain in the States until the situation stabilizes and hope to return to Liberia in November. I am staying in contact and in prayer with my colleagues and those I work with in Liberia. Please pray with me as I seek ways to fruitfully assist in building awareness of the impact of this dangerous disease and inviting support for the medical efforts to overcome it.

As the Ebola virus spreads in West Africa, The United Methodist Church continues to be present and respond through West African United Methodist church leaders and annual conference health boards, denominational health facilities, medical missionary colleagues, and the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR). The church’s three hospitals and five clinics in Sierra Leone, one hospital and three clinics in Liberia and one UMC supported clinic in Guinea are all participating in Ebola virus awareness and treatment efforts. A key way you can contribute to our United Methodist response to the West African Ebola crisis is through donations to UMCOR International Disaster Response, Advance #982450. All gifts received will be used to fund UMCOR’s response to this and other emergencies.

Although schools are closed, the Department of General Education & Ministry is involved in renovation of several United Methodist Schools and in distribution of supplies recently donated by the Holston Conference. Rev. Sampson W. Nyanti, our Associate Director for Administration, is serving as Acting Director in my absence. The work of the Department of General Education & Ministry will continue regardless of my not being in the country. I am in daily contact with our staff via email.

Indeed I am blessed by your support! During this time of crisis and uncertainty, your prayers sustain and encourage me. While in the USA, I am available to visit with churches and groups; especially in annual conferences that support my Global Ministries salary and my projects. I am very thankful to the pastor and congregation of Wesley UMC in Elkton, MD for providing me with a place to stay.

Please let me know if you desire me visit your church. You can contact me at:
Email: or
Cell Phone: 646-416-4598

My address while in USA is:

Helen Roberts-Evans
c/o Wesley United Methodist Church
41 Justice Way
Elkton, MD 21921

For financial contributions, you may:

1. Use Global Ministries' website: to send a donation for my salary support. At the bottom of the page, click on "Missionaries". Scroll to my name on the missionaries page and my profile will appear. At the bottom of my profile is a link to make an online donation.

2. Send a check to Advance GCFA
 P.O. Box 9068
 New York, NY 10087-9068
for my project and salary support.
On the notation section of your check, write Advance Number #3021129 (my Global Ministries salary support) and/or Advance #15125B (Scholarships for Elementary, Secondary, College and Seminary Education), Advance #3021654 (Sheltering the Children of John Dean Town), Advance # 14488A (Swords Turned into Plowshares), Advance # 3026070 (Construction of New School Buildings).

I appreciate your faithful support of my ministry, and your abiding and prayerful concern for the people of West Africa during this crisis. May God’s grace and healing comfort those afflicted by the Ebola virus and every human disaster. Pray for my colleagues in Liberia who continue their committed work. Pray for my health and physical and spiritual strength as I continuously think about and sort through all the concerns raised during this crisis!

I look forward to hear from you.

Yours in Christ,
Helen Roberts-Evans
Advance # 3021129