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Dealing with tragedy

I am not a divider, am I?

1/17/2019

I am not a divider, am I?

1995 Medford Mail Tribune Headline I serve a church in Ashland, Oregon. We are on the very southern edge of the Oregon/Idaho border, yet in one incident in our local church life, we were brought into the very center of one of the most important global conversations the greater church has had in the last 50 years—whether or not to ordain and fully include LGBTQIA people in the church.   Rev. Richenda Fairhurst This past All Saints Day, we had a chance to remember two of our most precious ...

Early Response Team from Oregon-Idaho Responds to Hurricane Florence

10/24/2018

Early Response Team from Oregon-Idaho Responds to Hurricane Florence

Larry Johnson at an ERT Fair earlier this year Larry Johnson and Tom Ettelson of Mt Home UMC in Sherwood, Oregon are traveling to North Carolina as part of a United Methodist Early Response Team to help with local recovery after Hurricane Florence, which struck North Carolina on September 14th. Larry is the Oregon-Idaho Annual Conference Coordinator of the Early Response Team program.  Both Larry and Tom have been through the Early Response Team Training, which is a collaborative effort of ...

Emergency Preparedness ministry available in Oregon-Idaho Conference

10/17/2018

Emergency Preparedness ministry available in Oregon-Idaho Conference

Planning for a disaster or preparing for an emergency might seem like a self-fulfilling prophecy that no one really wants to come true. However, The United Methodist Church through the Oregon-Idaho Conference believes in equipping churches and individuals with the right tools and training to be the hands and feet of Christ in crisis and conflict. This ministry is primarily done through Early Response Teams (ERT), an effort promoted by the United Methodist Committee on Relief to respond to ...

Items being collected for UMCOR West Depot starting Oct. 15

9/19/2018

Items being collected for UMCOR West Depot starting Oct. 15

Starting October 15, local volunteer Steve Matthews will be traveling through Oregon and Idaho to pick up supplies to deliver to the United Methodist Committee on Relief west depot in Salt Lake City. Matthews will pick up supplies from collection point churches (listed below).   Churches are encouraged to collect supplies for the sewing room at the West Depot.   UMCOR West Depot coordinator Brian Diggs said the sewing room continues to be a vital part of the United Methodist mission in Utah ...

Responding to suicide prevention in faith-based communities

9/12/2018

Responding to suicide prevention in faith-based communities

September is National Suicide Prevention Month and Suicide Prevention Week is September 10-15. The Faith Communities Task Force of the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention has assembled an array of resources to help celebrate Faith.Hope.Life. Faith.Hope.Life is an opportunity for every faith community in the United States, regardless of creed, to focus on one Sabbath each year on the characteristics common to most faiths that also help prevent suicides. These characteristics are at ...

United Methodists Reach Out

10/2/2015

United Methodists Reach Out

As the city of Roseburg and the surrounding community try to grasp the realities of Thursday’s violent shooting at Umpqua Community College, churches of all faiths are offering support. The Rev. Scott Harkness of the Roseburg United Methodist Church says that so far he has not learned of anyone in the church’s congregation being a victim. But in a small town like Roseburg, many people will be friends or acquaintances of victims and families of victims. “I’ve had offers of help from around the ...

Westside United Methodist Church loses education building

5/4/2015

Westside United Methodist Church loses education building

The burned out shell of the Westside UMC education buliding stands after the fire is out. (Brian Shimer photos) The Westside United Methodist Church in Beaverton, Oregon suffered a major fire in the early hours of Monday, May 04. A 1960’s era education building caught fire in the night, and is a complete loss. The cause of the fire is still under investigation. The building, which did not have sprinklers or an alarm system was primarily used as Sunday school space. The separate sanctuary ...

Church serves as help site in shooting wake

12/15/2012
Members of Newtown United Methodist Church in Sandy Hook, Conn., are “still holding our breath” to learn the full impact of the Dec. 14 shooting at nearby Sandy Hook Elementary School, said the Rev. Mel Kawakami, the church’s senior pastor. “We’re trying to keep our lines open,” he said. “We have already tried to reach out. We have communications circles that are trying to canvass our congregation.” At least 27 are dead, including 18 children, according to the most recent news reports, in ...

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