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Date: June 5, 2018 at 12:48:52 PM EDT
Subject: June 5, 2018 e-Newsletter

Finger Lakes District E-Newsletter   June 5, 2018

Rev. McDowell
Welcome to the Finger Lakes District e-Newsletter! Please share this with church members and staff, teams and organizations. We hope that you will find this an invaluable resource as we work to promote the missions, ministries and events of the Finger Lakes District. If you have something you would like to see included in a future issue of this e-newsletter, send to
May you have a blessed week!
Your friends at the Finger Lakes District Office,
       Rev. Jeffrey McDowell, District Superintendent
            Pam Deckard, Administrative Assistant
Office Hours:  Pam will be working from home Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays and in the Seneca Falls Office Tuesdays and Thursdays 9:00 am - 2:00 pm.   You can call the office at any time (315-781-0188).  Or email.  Thank you.

The District Office will be closed for vacation from Tuesday, June 19 thru Wednesday, July 4th and will re-open Thursday, July 5th.  For emergencies, please contact Jeff on his cell phone.  
The next edition of this eNewsletter comes out on June 19, 2018.  To submit an item for the newsletter, please have it to the district office by June 12.   Thank you.
Friends, we have just gone to Annual Conference and experienced many great and mighty things from God, together.  We have also experienced some angst, anger, strained relationships and confusing parliamentary procedures.  

Welcome to church!  We take the good with the bad when we decide to follow Christ.  We take the imperfect systems, relationships, communications, and feelings and give them back to God whenever we can, because we are more together than separate. 

Pray for one another.  Forgive one another.  Love one another because God in Christ first loved us.  Please take a moment and see all the great things happening in our district, and get involved!
In Christ, Jeff McDowell

Finger Lakes District 2018 Clergy Retirees

Congratulations to the more than 30 Upper New York clergy members who are retiring  - they were recognized at the 2018 UNY Annual Conference. Finger Lakes District retiring pastors are: Rev. Tae Kun Kim, Rev. John McNeill, Rev. Terry Wiliford, and Chaplain Gail Conners
Be sure to thank them for their service and commitment to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. Click here to see a list of the retirees and to watch their farewell messages upon retirement.
Regstration for 2018 Summer Programs is now open! Click here to browse all of our 2018 summer programs and to register.  Don't forget to take advantage of our Early Bird ($10 before May 1), Sibling ($20 per camper), and Refer-A-Friend ($40 for the referring friend) Discounts!  We've got big things planned this summer and we want YOU to be part of it!  Register today! If there are any questions, please contact us at (toll free) 855-414-6400 or
2018 Camp and Retreat Ministries spring newsletter available

The most recent Camp and Retreat Ministries (CRM) Xenia News newsletter is now available on the Conference website and

 Click here to read this issue, which includes: a letter from CRM executive assistant Joan Newlon (who shares exciting news), updates from CRM staff, exciting programs taking place this summer, and news from each of the CRM sites.
Bishop Webb announces clergy appointments

Upper New York Area Resident Bishop Mark J. Webb has announced new appointments and retirements.  CLICK HERE for the latest appointments.
Safe Sanctuaries Training, Wednesday, June 20

9:00 a.m.-noon at the Upper New York United Methodist Center, 7481 Henry Clay Blvd. in Liverpool. 

WHO:   Individuals with responsibility for the safety of children, youth, and vulnerable adults in the churches' ministries such as pastors, those responsible for Christian education, and youth group leaders. Upper New York staff members with interest or responsibilities related to Safe Sanctuaries. 
(This course is a prerequisite for Upper NY's Safe Sanctuaries Training of Trainers which is offered several time a year at various locations around Upper New York)
WHEN: Wednesday, June 20 9:00 a.m.-noon
Please arrive between 8:40 and 8:55 so we can begin on time.

WHERE: United Methodist Center, 7481 Henry Clay Blvd, Liverpool, N.Y. 13088, Meeting Room B
Register by June 13. CLICK HERE to register.  Please register by contacting Carol Barnes,  or call her at 607-687-4793. Questions about the course should be directed to Carol Barnes.  There is no charge as Ministry Shares benevolences from local churches cover the expenses
Another Safe Sanctuaries opportunity:
At Lansing UMC.
June 16, from 9 a.m. to Noon. 
Everyone is welcome, but we can only sign up to 40 people. We will provide snacks. Childcare is available if we are given notice.

People can sign up by calling our office at 607-533-4070 on weekdays between 9am and 3pm, by emailing us at, or by following this link:
Please Note:

If there are changes in the names, addresses, phone numbers, and e-mail addresses  for you, and/or any of your committee chairs, please contact the district office with the changes. Thank you  
Did You Know?
Christian conference for the early Methodists was about spiritual formation, encouraging people to serve and follow Jesus faithfully, according to Steve Manskar.

"Wesley understood ... to be formed as a disciple, as a follower of Jesus, you need the large community. But where the real Christian formation happened was in the small groups of the class meetings and then even smaller groups of the band meetings.  "Christian conference is the method of Methodism," he continued. "People were formed and grew in holiness of life. (They) learned the means of grace and were given the accountability and support for making those practices a part of life."

Rev. Steve Manskar, director of Wesleyan leadership at the General Board of Discipleship.  Taken from

The Upper New York (UNY) Communications Ministry Area has recognized that Methodists use as many acronyms as words in conversations and often in written articles. Our policy is to always spell out acronyms first so readers know what we are talking about, but not all publications follow this etiquette. For that reason, we have created the Upper New York Acronym Glossary.

Click here to read the glossary.

Click here to visit our Facebook page-actively engage with fellow Upper New Yorkers about this topic and let us know acronyms we may have missed! 
Laity Banquet   Sunday, October 21, 2018 at Club 86 in Geneva. 
3:30 - 6:30 pm. 86 Avenue East, Geneva, NY 14456   $22 per person.   Reservations to the District Office.
More information to come in later issues of this newsletter.
The Upper New York United Methodist Historical Society was organized by the Upper New York Commission on Archives and History to promote and preserve Methodist and Evangelical United Brethren history within the bounds of Upper New York Conference.  Its mission is to Preserve the PAST; Inform the FUTURE.  
In 2016 a web-based resource site was created at  In 2017 the Society began public meetings.  
In 2018 a quarterly newsletter UNY Historical News & Views started.  Attached is the Spring issue for Methodist members to see.  The first issue can be accessed through a link at 
ESI's (Employee Assistance Group) TotalCare EAP can help
with virtually every area of life.  See flyer (click here) for more information. Or go to: or call: 800-252-4555
NEW - Intensive Course on Charles Wesley at CRCDS

A week long, in-depth study of Charles Wesley's life and thought taught by the Rev. Dr. John Tyson is being offered June 11 through June 15 at Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School, 1100 S. Goodman St., Rochester. 
The class will meet from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. each day. Cost for clergy and alumni auditing the class is $150 and $300 for others.
Charles "the other Wesley," was a major contributor and shaper of the Wesleyan tradition - in terms of his evangelism, hymns, and the challenges of living a happily married life in the midst of the relentless demands of ministry. This examination Charles' work will be set in the context of his life and times and based on a close reading of important primary and secondary resources. Particular attention will be paid to the on-going relevance of his work for contemporary Christian practitioners in the Wesleyan theological tradition.
Go to the CRCDS website for more information or contact Dr. Tyson directly,
Jeff McDowell asks you to think of the discussions and debates at this year's annual conference, using John Wesley's quote below.

5. Christian Conference.
Are we convinced how important and how difficult it is to order our conversation right? Is it always in grace? Seasoned with salt? Meet to minister grace to the hearers?
Do we not converse too long at a time? Is not an hour at a time commonly enough?  
Would it not be well to plan our conversation beforehand? To pray before and after it? (Wesley, Works, 10: 856-857)
The latest copy of the Bridge is now available for download. It is available in both color and black & white formats. Click here to select the version you prefer and make copies as necessary. 
As a bi-monthly publication, the Bridge can be used this Sunday or next, whichever is most useful to the local church. The Bridge is a communications tool designed for local churches to stay connected to each other and to the ministries taking place around the Upper New York Conference and The United Methodist Church. The newest volume will be listed at the top of the webpage, with older volumes below. The Bridge is designed to be handed out in worship, as a church bulletin insert, or as a standalone item. If you have questions or are unable to make copies, please contact
Subject: Academic Year 2018-2019 Course of Study, Buffalo, NY Extension School
The Buffalo Course of Study Extension is a program of the United Methodist Church designed to help equip local pastors for the ministry of Jesus! 
The summer session of Course of Study, Buffalo, NY Extension School is being held August 10-11 and September 13-14, 2018.  If you are planning to appoint any new local pastors and they wish to attend, they should have their registration for courses in our hands by June 11 and their tuition paid by June 26. 
Please make new appointees aware of these deadlines.  Registration forms as well as course offerings and student handbook are available online at  Syllabi for courses will be available on the website three months prior to the start of class.
If anyone has any questions or needs clarification, please feel free to contact me at or 716-875-5091 ext 206 Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 am-3 pm. 

Barb Sercu
COS Staff Support
Pulpit Supply 

Dear Friends; Below is a list of potential guest preachers available for pulpit supply.  Please contact any of them directly to work out details and dates.  DO YOU know of others?  Email their names to the district office.

RE     Carol Keller, Auburn                315-882-4624   (June-July only)
RE  David Bergner, Rushville  585-526-5379   (short drive/lead time)
LP      Marcia King, Auburn   (H) 315-889-7727; (C) 315-703-4294
LP      Ellen Knight, Lyons     315-945-5557
RE      Sue Walters, Bloomfield  (C) 716-983-5760   
RE    Judy White-Wunder, Penn Yan   (H) 315-694-9064; 
                                           (c) 607-215-5193;
RE   James Carroll, Lyons          315-406-1771;
Lay Pulpit Supply
Bobbie Valentine, Ledyard          315-406-9562
Volume 10, Issue 2, of the Upper New York Advocate focuses on vital congregations and leadership. The theme is "Spiritually planning our way forward." You will learn about the five markers of vitality and churches that are succeeding in those areas. You will find testimonials of pastors who are learning that VitalSigns is an incredible resource. Looking for courses or programs to strengthen your leadership? You will learn about many opportunities in this issue of the Advocate. This issue also points to dozens of resources that can help you on your path to becoming a vital congregation.
Click here for the latest issue of the Advocate on the Conference website; the printed version of this newsletter will be available in your local church. The Advocate is the Conference's ministry magazine. 


     Mission u (formerly known as School of Christian Mission) was created by Methodist women in the early-20th century in order to educate women and inspire them to a sense of mission at home and around the world.  The United Methodist Women remain dedicated to the planning and promotion of this program.
     The schools were formed by and for women but over the years the demographic has changed as men, children and youth take advantage of this rich opportunity. In our Upper New York Conference, Mission u is a "cooperative school", sponsored by both Conference United Methodist Women and the churches of our Upper New York Conference.  We welcome women & men and, in the case of the Cazenovia venue, children and youth.
     We offer opportunities for study and fellowship in three different venues, each held on a different weekend in the summer. Each venue has its own special flavor. At Mission u, we grow in understanding of the mission of the church in the current world context as we "learn together for the transformation of the world".  The three studies offered each year cover three aspects: spiritual growth, geographical and social issues.   CLICK HERE for more information. 
UMM Night at the Ballpark

United Methodist Night at the Ballpark is 6:35 p.m., July 17, NBT Bank Stadium, 1 Tex Simone Drive, Syracuse, NY 13208. AAA Syracuse Chiefs vs. Durham Bulls.
Tickets are $9 apiece with 5 ticket min +$1.50 postage/handling. There is a Chiefs baseball cap giveaway this evening as well. Anne Hutchins, Crossroads District AA, will throw out the first pitch. Line up by 6 p.m. to join in singing the National Anthem at Home Plate. Tailgate party is 4:45 p.m. Bring non-perishable food pantry donation, a dish to pass, beverage and table service. Complementary hot dogs from Crossroads District United Methodist Men. For information, 315-427-3515,
UMM Retreat

We are very excited to be hosting this dynamic retreat at Skylake in Windsor, NY on September 7-8, 2018.
This retreat is open to everyone, of all denominations as well as to women, children, families etc. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me via email or phone. Thank you so much and may the Lord bless you as you continue to do the Lord's work.   FLYER
In Christ,Sanjay Solomon, (937) 626-5247
Josiah and More

            The First UMC of Seneca Falls will be sponsoring a screening of the short documentary, Josiah on Saturday, June 16 at 2:00 pm. in the Wesleyan Chapel at the Women's Rights National Historical Park, 136 Fall St., Seneca Falls. The film is the compelling story of Josiah Henson, an African-American slave who became a Methodist preacher and eventually obtained freedom in Canada. Henson is the man upon whose life Harriet Beecher Stowe based her novel, Uncle Tom's Cabin.  The National Park is hosting the showing of this film as part of a weekend celebration of Juneteenth (June 19ththe date in 1865 when the last group of slaves received word of their freedom).

            Seneca County Historian Walt Gable will also give a presentation entitled, "Local Congregations and the Burning Issue of Slavery" on Friday evening, June 15, at 7 pm.  Among other things, Walt will discuss the pivotal role that certain men in the Methodist Episcopal Church of Seneca Falls played in starting the abolitionist movement in Upstate New York. 

Don't miss these interesting and informative events! They are a significant part of our heritage as United Methodists.  CLICK HERE for the poster.
Join Port Byron UMC to experience the production of JESUS
We are taking a bus to Lancaster Pa. on Tuesday, October 2, 2018
For a one day trip (8am to 11pm)
We have reserved 50 fifty seats and a comfy tour bus.
on the ride down two rest stops and a lunch break.
Total cost for trip $116 for adults and $86 children under 12
Non-refundable deposit of $60 due by May 1st
2nd payment $30 due by June 1st
3rd final payment $26 due by September 1st. ALL CHECKS MADE OUT TO 'PBUMC"
please send checks to:   Port Byron 1st Methodist
PO Box 344
Port Byron, NY 13140
Phone: April Kurtz 315/776-4051 Ron Mills 315/253-4016
North Rose UMC Vacation Bible School

NRUMC's VBS will be Sunday July 29 - Thursday August 2, 2018 from 6 - 8 pm, ages preschool through those who have just completed fifth grade. The theme of our VBS will be: "Rolling River Ride - Catch The Current Of Christ' Power."
To celebrate and launch our Summer VBS Program, North Rose UMC will be hosting a:"Splash into VBS,' Community Party, Saturday July 28, 2018 from 12 noon - 5 pm. Hot Dogs/Ice Cream/Soft Drinks for refreshments, with games for all ages, A Bounce House, Water Slide, Featured Favorites for kids. Basket Door Prizes, will be given for those who attend. Pre-registration for VBS will also be available on Saturday, for parents/guardians who would like their children to attend VBS, the next evening. 
Workshop and Conference Sponsored by the Voyagers

For Leaders and Coaches: Clergy, Educators, Therapists
Location: Buffalo, New York Area

The Voyagers are a gathering of clergy and church leaders exploring Bowen family systems theory and its application to congregations and leadership by Rabbi Edwin Friedman. We believe that the factual approach of Murray Bowen that underlies his theory and the creative and imaginative use of theory by Edwin Friedman provide a unique understanding of human functioning for life, leadership, coaching, and ministry.

Wednesday, November 14, 2018 - Bowen Theory Introduction and Application
Location: Westin Hotel, Buffalo    Time and Cost: TBA

Thursday, November 15, 2018 - Conference with Dr. Michael Kerr
Theme - Bowen Theory's Secrets: The Hidden Life of Families
Location: Christ the King Seminary, East Aurora, NY
               Time: 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM     Cost: TBA

For information and early bird registration,
contact Rev. Robert Spilman,
phone:  716-479-7933
363 Darwin Drive, Amherst, NY 14226
Red Bird Mission 2018

CLICK HERE for shoebox information for Red Bird 2018.   Please consider being part of this vital mission.  If you have any questions, please let us know, you can contact the Endwell UMC at 607-754-5735 or Dave Alexander at 607-743-8955.

How Do I connect?

Denominational Website: The United Methodist Church
District Website: Finger Lakes District 
If you would like to subscribe to this e-newsletter, please send your email address to:
Finger Lakes District
of the Upper New York Conference

Rev. Jeffrey McDowell, District Superintendent
Pam Deckard, Administrative Assistant

12 North Park St., Suite 11
Seneca Falls, NY 13148  
Office:  315-781-0188     efax: +1-315-282-2367 
Upper New York Conference, 7481 Henry Clay Blvd, Liverpool, NY 13088
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