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Global Health and Poverty

Abundant Health ministry continues to expand across Conference

5/15/2019

Abundant Health ministry continues to expand across Conference

In its first year with an official staff person, the Oregon-Idaho Conference’s Abundant Health ministry has made a great deal of progress in getting people and churches connected to the concept of mental, physical and spiritual health – but more work lies ahead. More than 40 churches across the Conference have signed on as participants in the initiative, according to Abundant Health Coordinator Marshall Wattman-Turner. “Our goal is to create a network of United Methodist members and ...

ERT volunteers needed in Saipan

5/15/2019

ERT volunteers needed in Saipan

It takes more than 20 hours to fly there, but the people of Saipan are in desperate need of trained volunteer emergency responders to help them as they struggle to rebuild after Typhoon Yutu ripped through the area last fall. Larry Johnson, a member of the Oregon-Idaho Conference Emergency Response Team (ERT), recently returned from a two-week work trip there. As a commonwealth of the United States, the Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) is looking for volunteer organizations ...

Special offerings held throughout Annual Conference

5/15/2019

Special offerings held throughout Annual Conference

Annual Conference is enriched by the special worship services held throughout the gathering to honor our churches, offer remembrance to the deceased, celebrate the ordination and commissioning of new faith leaders and move us forward into a new year of ministry. Three of the four worship services will be held at Eugene First United Methodist Church, located not far from the Hotel Eugene where the Conference will be held. There will be shuttle buses available at the hotel. The church is located ...

Oregon-Idaho missionaries see border crisis up close

5/8/2019

Oregon-Idaho missionaries see border crisis up close

There’s nothing quite as heartbreaking as stumbling across a grave of a young migrant infant in the desert. But that’s what Oregon-Idaho Conference missionaries and volunteers Evelyn Erbele, Teri Erbele and Louise Kienzle got to see when they took an up-close tour of the U.S./Mexico border in early April near Nogales, Ariz., and Mexico. “You just can’t describe it. There is nothingness, but this heat and wind and then you come across a grave,” Evelyn Erbele said. “And you realize you’re in ...

Pastors participate in Hood to Coast relay

5/8/2019

Pastors participate in Hood to Coast relay

Sometimes, when pastors get together, it’s not to preach, or even talk about preaching. Four clergy from the Columbia District and one of their spouses competed in the Hood to Coast Pacific City Race over the weekend and found themselves energized – when not exhausted – by the 78-mile experience. Revs. Erin Martin, Josh Kingsley, Eric Conklin, and Ric Shewell, along with Martin’s spouse Charlie Collier, all stepped up to run two legs of the race on Saturday. Their team name: “May the 4th be ...

Tigard teen deemed 'Hunger Hero' for service to Bethlehem House of Bread

4/15/2019

Tigard teen deemed 'Hunger Hero' for service to Bethlehem House of Bread

Elena Villarreal is an award-winning hunger hero at just 14 years old. But why wouldn’t she be after all the work she’s put into helping Bethlehem House of Bread, a United Methodist Ministry sponsored by the Tigard United Methodist Church. Bethlehem House of Bread started in 2013 in what was once Metzger UMC southwest of Portland. Elena has been volunteering her time at the food pantry and community center since she was in 5th grade as part of her Girl Scouts volunteerism. She’s working on ...

Rupert food pantry offers community meals; second chances

4/3/2019

Rupert food pantry offers community meals; second chances

For nearly two years, Edwina “Wendy” Kent came to the Open Hearts Food Pantry at Rupert United Methodist Church to keep her own pantry stocked and her stomach full. Having called this small town in Idaho’s Magic Valley home for nearly 14 years, Kent found herself needing more support in September when she found herself in a little bit of trouble with the law. Little did she know the Rupert Food Pantry would be her saving grace. “I liked the people at the church, and I like to see the families ...

UMCOR continues to be vital ministry around the globe

3/27/2019

UMCOR continues to be vital ministry around the globe

As the church continues to grapple with the fallout of General Conference 2019, the United Methodist Committee on Relief is still on the ground, responding to disaster and calls for help across the globe. While the merits of the Traditional Plan are up for consideration by the Judicial Council, UMCOR has sent money and resources to respond to Cyclone Idai in Mozambique last week and continued flooding in Nebraska. This Sunday, churches can continue supporting life-saving ministries around the ...

Portland churches join ‘plastics fast’ for Lent

2/27/2019

Portland churches join ‘plastics fast’ for Lent

Some people try giving up chocolate for Lent. Some people try letting go of anger or fears after their foreheads are dotted with Ashes at the beginning of the six-week holy season. But several Portland churches, spurred on by First United Methodist Church, will be attempting to care more for their planet by reducing their use of plastics during the season of Lent. “It’s a theological issue,” said Rev. Josh Kingsley, minister of discipleship from First UMC PDX. “We are in relationship with ...

Conference holding April summit to keep moving immigration issues forward

2/19/2019

Conference holding April summit to keep moving immigration issues forward

Photo by Paul Jeffrey. The Rev. Jorge Rodriguez, a United Methodist pastor, leads participants in song at a rally outside a federal detention center in Sheridan, Oregon. Participants protested the Trump administration's policy of separating parents from their children at the U.S.-Mexico border. While some churches and faith communities in the Oregon-Idaho Conference are deeply embedded in immigration and migrant family support, others are just starting to dip their congregation’s toes ...

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