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Boise church deconsecrates and removes stained glass window depicting Confederate General Robert E. Lee as it repents of racism

8/7/2020

Boise church deconsecrates and removes stained glass window depicting Confederate General Robert E. Lee as it repents of racism

BOISE – Building on their commitment to fight racism, leaders of First United Methodist Church of Boise (Cathedral of the Rockies) deconsecrated a stained-glass window depicting Confederate General Robert E. Lee on Friday before workers will remove it permanently soon.   The service of deconsecration and removal of the window is the latest step taken by members of the United Methodist congregation as they move forward in repenting of racism.   The stained-glass window was installed in the church...

Houseless youth find support and safety at Eugene UMC

5/26/2020

Houseless youth find support and safety at Eugene UMC

By Sally Blanchard Being a houseless youth is dangerous. For the approximately 500 without stable housing in Eugene/Springfield, it can mean long days with exposure to the streets that come with hunger, drug use, fear of assault and sexual assault.  Some feel the need to carry and sleep with a weapon like a knife or machete to protect themselves. Though young in years, they make adult decisions every day about how to survive. Day shelters around town and the public library used to offer relief...

Presbyterian and ELCA churches join gift card effort

4/23/2020

Presbyterian and ELCA churches join gift card effort

At a time when people in our communities need support, the Oregon-Idaho Conference of The United Methodist Church is excited to launch Grocery Gift Cards for Families initiative in partnership with the Oregon Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the Cascades Presbytery. With a $100,000 grant from the Oregon-Idaho Conference of The UMC, $100,000 from the Cascades Presbytery and $25,000 in contribution so far from ELCA churches in the Oregon Synod, the goal is to respond to ...

Conference commits $100,000 to Grocery Gift Cards for Families

4/9/2020

Conference commits $100,000 to Grocery Gift Cards for Families

After a successful pilot program of approximately 300 grocery gift cards being distributed to low-income families in and around Portland, the Oregon-Idaho Conference Ministry Leadership Team is excited to offer a $100,000 grant to help churches get grocery gift cards into the hands of families across Oregon and Idaho. The launch of “Grocery Gift Cards for Families” is meant to inspire churches to identify and engage with people in their community to reach those most in need during the COVID-19 ...

Reflections from the Border: Report from recent UMVIM trip

4/2/2020

Reflections from the Border: Report from recent UMVIM trip

Written by Louise Kienzle, Oregon-Idaho UMVIM coordinator  Early in March, a team of 15 traveled to Tucson. This team included friends and new friends from Oregon and Tennessee. We spent a very busy 5-days learning about the real issues at the border, both in Tucson and Nogales.   I’ve been home for almost two-weeks now, but visions of what our team saw and words that we heard still resonate.   One meeting early in the week was with Rocio, a woman from Bolivia who spent 2 years and 1-month in ...

Hillsboro UMC community trading post becomes necessity for community

3/19/2020

Hillsboro UMC community trading post becomes necessity for community

For several years now, the Hillsboro United Methodist Church has operated a Community Trading Post in their building.  Stocking non-perishable food, hygiene items, blankets and clothing for men, women and children, the space operates on a take what you need, share what you can basis.  As the COVID-19 guidelines started, they realized they could no longer safely process clothing, so that part of the operation was temporarily suspended.  Next, as worship was canceled and moved online and group ...

Madras UMC provides support, encouragement for local inmates

2/26/2020

Madras UMC provides support, encouragement for local inmates

Editor's note: KH's initials are being used in this story to protect his privacy. When Rev. Nancy Slabaugh Hart moved to Madras in 2017, she was pleasantly surprised to know the church was partnering with Central Oregon Community College to provide educational programs at the minimum-security Deer Ridge Corrections Center, but chaplaincy wasn’t what she was after. “I certainly have the skill to be helpful. But, I wanted to help the men in the education department with a wider range of options—...

Newman UMC rainbow flag brings hope to Grants Pass

2/26/2020

Newman UMC rainbow flag brings hope to Grants Pass

  Newman United Methodist Church in Grants Pass, Oregon, took another step in their journey to be a welcoming and inclusive congregation to LGBTQ+ people. The Church council at NUMC was in unanimous agreement after General Conference 2019 that the church needed to be clear in its welcome to all people regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. Beginning Feb. 4, 2020 Newman UMC began flying a rainbow pride flag from its main entrance. There was concern among some church members ...

Personal essay: An inmate's journey to a second chance

2/26/2020

Personal essay: An inmate's journey to a second chance

By KH Deer Ridge Correctional Institution inmate Editor's note: KH has been mentored by Rev. Nancy Slabaugh Hart of Madras UMC. Read more about their work together on the Conference website. His initials are being used because of confidentiality concerns. I grew up in a typical middle-class neighborhood in New Orleans. The houses were nicely kept up; the parents had good careers; and the children could ride their bikes in the neighborhood and feel safe. One block away, were the projects: large ...

OR-ID Holy Land Task Force 'horrified' by Trump peace plan

2/19/2020

OR-ID Holy Land Task Force 'horrified' by Trump peace plan

The members of the OR/ID Holy Land Task Force were horrified by the announcement of the “Deal of the Century/Peace Plan” recently announced by the Trump and Netanyahu administrations. We know that many share in our dismay.  Some have commented on the timing of the announcement – midstream in Trump’s impeachment trial and preceding Netanyahu’s third attempt to retain his position as Israel’s prime minister in the face of recently filed corruption charges.  Others are struck by the incongruity of ...

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