What to bring to Conference

In eight weeks the lobby of the Grand Traverse Resort will be busy welcoming members of the Michigan Annual Conference. This was the scene in 2017. ~mic photo/Hannah Hazen

There will be in-gatherings at Annual Conference of relief supplies, dollars for books and covenant partners.

The 2018 Michigan Annual Conference will be held in Acme, Michigan at the Grand Traverse Resort May 31 – June 3. Full information about the event may be found at 2018.michiganumc.org.

In the weeks leading up to the Conference, individuals and congregations can be preparing for the “in-gatherings” that will benefit persons locally and around the globe.

Special Offerings

There will be two financial giving opportunities during Annual Conference this year, as follows: 

Thursday, May 31 during Opening Worship

Thursday, May 31 during Opening Worship the majority of the Opening Worship offering will benefit our covenant partners, The Methodist Church of Haiti and The Liberia Annual Conference. New this year a 10% tithe of the opening worship offering received will be given to an emerging need as identified by the Commission on the Annual Conference Session in consultation with Bishop David Bard.  

Bishop Bard has identified the continued need of immediate relief for those living in Puerto Rico following the devastation of Hurricane Maria. A tithe of our offering will be sent to the Methodist Church of Puerto Rico for needs identified from the Episcopal Office of Bishop Hector Ortiz Vidal.  

The remaining 90% of the offering will be split between the Haiti Hot Lunch program and the Bishop Judith Craig Children’s Village in Liberia. In lieu of providing materials to be shipped to these locations, we ask you to consider sending additional funds for immediate relief.   

Blue envelopes will be used to receive funds for the Detroit Annual Conference, and orange envelopes for the West Michigan Conference. Please make your check payable to “Detroit Annual Conference” or “West Michigan Conference” noting “AC Offering” in the memo line. 

Sunday, June 3 during the Service of Recognition, Commissioning and Ordination 

Sunday, June 3 during the Service of Recognition, Commissioning and Ordination  Sunday’s offering will benefit the Ministerial Education Fund (MEF) which is used to develop Bold and Effective Leaders. Seminary grants benefit candidates, and continuing education funds for clergy are among some of the uses for these funds. Blue envelopes will be used to receive funds for the Detroit Annual Conference, and orange envelopes for the West Michigan Annual Conference. Please make your check payable to either “Detroit Annual Conference” or “West Michigan Conference” noting “MEF” in the memo line. Collection envelopes will be distributed by the ushers during the service.  

Preconference Fundraising Opportunities on Wednesday, May 30

Preconference Fundraising Opportunities on Wednesday, May 30   5K for Haiti Relief – sponsored by the Conference Board of Pension and Health Benefits. Your entire $35 registration fee will go to the Haiti Task Force for immediate relief. Golf Scramble to benefit Campus Ministries. Click here for detail.         

Disaster Relief Supplies

The Midwest Mission Distribution Center will have a truck parked in the parking lot of the Grand Traverse Resort May31-June1. Conference members are asked to bring Personal Dignity Kits to fill the trailer.

These kits contain: Hand towel (bath), washcloth (bath), comb, nail clippers, toothbrush, toothpaste (2.5 oz or larger), shampoo (3-4 oz.) deodorant (2-3 oz), bar soap (3 oz or larger), and razor (individually wrapped). Click here for instructions on how to assemble the kits.

Other in-demand items that may be brought for the trailer are: glue sticks, dry erase markers and eraser, blue and black pens, and 1-subject spiral notebooks.

Childhood Literacy

The Michigan Conference Deacons, along with Julie Bard, are excited to promote awareness about and action for childhood literacy. Deacons around Michigan are working with organizations that need books and/or distribute free books for children in their communities. Click here to learn more about childhood literacy.

Conference members are NOT asked to bring books with them to Conference. The Deacons have teamed up with Scholastic Literacy Partnerships and Cokesbury so churches are able to purchase age- appropriate books at a lower cost. The goal is to collect 1,000 books to be distributed around the State of Michigan.

What to do:

  1. Complete the Scholastic order form.
  2. Write a check made out to Michigan Conference Treasurer (NOT Scholastic). Include on the Memo Line: Deacon Book Collection.
  3. Please turn in the form and check during Annual Conference to a table outside the Michigan Ballroom.
  4. You may also purchase books from Cokesbury during Conference to donate to the literacy project.

Quilts for Safe Harbor Shelter

Quilts for Safe Harbor Shelter in Traverse City Remaining fabric from the weaving that occurred at the 2017 AC opening worship service has been used to design and sew seven beautiful quilts. These quilts will be set up as silent auction items during Annual Conference, with proceeds to be donated to Safe Harbor shelter in Traverse City. Last year’s ingathering benefitted this new shelter dedicated to the preservation of the physical health and spiritual welfare of people experiencing homelessness. A primary goal of Safe Harbor is to offer food, shelter, and hope for guests staying in their shelter.  

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