How About a Trip to Browning?

Sally McConnell is organizing a mission trip to the Blackfeet United Methodist Parish (BUMP) in Browning, Montana and it’s open to all members of the Yellowstone Conference.  (That means you can meet friends from out of town while you work there.)  This VIM work team will work Friday, September 26 through Monday, September 29 but you may come for any part of those days.  They’ll stay in the bunkhouse and/or the church and the cost is only $15 a day for food.
 
Skilled and unskilled people are needed as  the projects include repairing fencing, replacing windows in the annex, repainting the Browning church sign, building a sign for Heart Butte and painting, scraping and painting trim on Browning church and winterizing Heart Butte.  BUMC has sent several Youth and Adult groups to Browning over the years, and it’s always been a very meaningful experience.  Please consider offering your help on this project, and contact Sally to sign up.
 
 
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Showers for the Homeless

 
Showers are coming soon to the Warming Center.  BUMC had a long history of providing showers for the homeless through our Faith Health program, but three years ago that was discontinued as the homeless situation in Bozeman went through some dynamic changes.  HRDC, other non-profit organizations and a variety of churches have worked hard to develop a replacement shower program which will be completed in the next month.
 
Showers will be available year-round, initially on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays.  BUMC will host on the first Saturday of each month from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.  A host team consists of a Shower Captain and 2 to 3 additional volunteers. Training for Captains is Friday, September 5 from 9-4.  Dick Pohl has agreed to be one Captain but we would love to have a couple more.   All host team members will be trained on how to respectfully work with homeless folks, health and safety issues, on-site operations, uniform and consistent enforcement of rules, and additional services offered by HRDC.   Please RSVP to Jen in our office  (586-5413) by Sept. 2 if you’d like to attend.  Volunteer training sessions will be available at a later date.  Hopefully our first work session will be September 6, followed by one on October 4th.
 
Towels and shower supplies will be provided.  If you can’t work at the showers, you can donate bath towels and washcloths – new or gently used are fine.  Please bring them to the specially marked box in the Narthex.
 
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Three Ways to Help Feed Our Community

 
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The Community Cafe offers free meals for everyone, and many BUMC volunteers have helped serve  dinner there.  The Cafe now has a fully functional commercial kitchen, and is able to cook for other groups, too.  If you can help one day a week with any of the following projects, or for more information, please call Lyra at 587-4225.
 
The Cafe provides daily hot lunches for LaMotte School, a rural K-8 school near Bear Canyon.  Drivers are needed at 10:30 a.m. to deliver these lunches to the school and/or after 1:30 p.m. to return the leftover food and dishes to the Cafe.  If you can do this on Wednesdays, Thursdays or Fridays each week, it would be greatly appreciated.
 
This will be the third year the Cafe provides supper at Whittier Elementary School, which is at the corner of 5th and Peach in Bozeman.  Supper is offered in conjunction with their after school care program.  They need people to help with supper Monday – Friday from 4:30 to 5:30.  Duties include picking up food and supplies at the Cafe, serving supper, and returning things back to the Cafe.  The Cafe is only about four blocks away, so transportation time is minimal.
 
Starting in mid-September there will be opportunities for drivers to deliver Kids Packs to various schools in the Gallatin Valley.  These bags of shelf-stable food are provided for children who would otherwise be hungry over the weekend.
 
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Campus Ministry is Thriving in Montana!

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Campus ministry is alive and well and changing lives in Montana!
Campus ministry in Bozeman revolves around a Tuesday night fellowship, called TNT, where students enjoy a homemade dinner, fun and games, discussion and music and prayer.  Throughout the year we offer retreats, bible studies, service projects, a Spring Break mission, and many fun social opportunities. The leadership team includes Janna and Bobby Lauver, Ann Dickensheets and Kath and Brian Crumrine, all from Bozeman UMC.  They have a booth at Catapalooza August 21 and 22 and welcome new students.
 
The program in Missoula will continue under the direction of Sabrina and Matthew Crum.  They offer dinner and a worship service each Thursday evening, as well as special events throughout the year, and a well-attended Sunday meal and bible study.
 
Rob Kirby has just completed his first year serving with the United Campus Ministry at MSU Billings.  His programs include fellowship gatherings, Bible Studies and discipleship groups, as well as regular opportunities for worship and for service.
 
If you know of any students attending MSU, U of M, Rocky or MSU Billings, please contact us so we can welcome your students and help them to become involved in these life-changing ministries!
 

            Ann Dickensheets (MSU):  ann@bozemanumc.org
            Sabrina Crum (U of M):  sabrinacrumsemail@gmail.com
            Rob Kirby (MSU B):  rkirby@msubillings.edu
            Kim Woeste (Rocky):  kim.woeste@rocky.edu
 
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Fighting Malaria means Fighting Ebola

The ebola crisis is complicated by miscommunication and mistrust among people of western Africa.  Imagine No Malaria has been in place for seven years in western Africa, and as a result its workers are among those trusted as sources of information on both Ebola and Malaria.  Here are excerpts from an August 15 UMCOR post by Julia Frisbie, INM Coordinator in the Pacific Northwest.  You can read the entire article here.
 

United Methodist health workers equipped by Imagine No Malaria to fight malaria are now also fighting Ebola. The same trained and skilled health professionals are on the front lines. 

“It is a blessing and a gift that a strengthened infrastructure is in place, thanks to the ministry of Imagine No Malaria,” said the Rev. Gary Henderson, executive director of Imagine No Malaria.  “No one dreamed that the church would be called upon in this way.”

Today, fighting malaria means fighting Ebola. Imagine No Malaria alone is not equipped to launch an emergency response to the Ebola epidemic, but we are part of a global denomination armed with the belief that the world is our parish. The people of The United Methodist Church are responding with supplies, grant money and advocacy. Your donations are making a difference in this fight.

Imagine No Malaria supports programs in all four countries where Ebola is present, and our comprehensive approach has strengthened hospitals and health posts.

Misinformation and denial are keeping sick people from getting help. Some people are hiding from government officials and medical teams because they fear that if they go into quarantine, they will never see their loved ones again. Since the early symptoms of malaria and Ebola are similar, many malaria patients are not getting treatment. This crisis jeopardizes the progress The United Methodist Church has made toward improving access to health care.

A big part of the fight against Ebola is a fight against fear. “If people don’t trust the government and the health care providers, they’re not going to get help,” said Shannon Trilli, UMCOR global health consultant.

United Methodists are working to get correct information to the people who need it most. In a statement, Liberian Bishop John G. Innis wrote, “United Methodist pastors, district superintendents and Sunday school teachers must share the information about the Ebola virus with their local churches and districts.”

Advocacy, prayer needed

Bishop John K. Yambasu of Sierra Leone chairs the Religious Leaders Task Force on Ebola.

“Our major focus is teaching the people the practices of personal hygiene as the only effective and sustainable way of preventing the disease,” he said. He noted that 80 percent of Sierra Leoneans belong to a faith group. Because they often trust their faith leaders more than they trust their elected officials, faith groups will be key players in changing the public discourse. “We work towards increasing community awareness and education,” Yambasu said.
 

When you donate through Imagine No Malaria, you join a global movement of The United Methodist Church to end preventable deaths and improve lives while at the same time strengthening health systems.

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UMCOR is at Work Around the World!

“How can we help?”  There are many crises around the world right now that make your heart ache but it’s hard to know how to offer help and hope.  UMCOR (the United Methodist Committee on Relief) is hard art work in many locations, and your prayers and  financial support make this possible.  You can donate to UMCOR in general or to specific projects, which are called Advances.  Read on for details on support projects and how to contribute to specific advances.
 
The United Methodist Church Responds to the Ebola Crisis
August 7, 2014—The United Methodist Church has been present with the people of West Africa since the beginning of the Ebola epidemic this spring. As the disease picks up speed, the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) is ramping up its response. A total of $87,000 in grant money has been distributed, and UMCOR stands ready to fund additional projects. Our healthcare networks have been activated to get the word out about prevention and treatment. Lifesaving supplies and protective equipment are on their way to Sierra Leone and Liberia right now.

As the Ebola virus spreads in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia, The United Methodist Church continues to be present and respond through West African United Methodist church leaders and regional health boards, denominational health facilities, missionaries, and the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR).  The church has three hospitals and five clinics in Sierra Leone and one hospital and three clinics in Liberia.
 
Updates on UMCOR’s work in response to Ebola  are available if you click on the green links: August 7 and August 5 .
Your gift to International Disaster Response, Advance #982450, empowers UMCOR to continue its crucial work in the fight against Ebola and in response to other natural and human-caused disasters.
 
UUMCOR Responds to the Immigration Crisis
June 25, 2014—The United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) responded today to a plea by the Southwest Texas Conference/Rio Grande Conference for emergency assistance to meet urgent needs of a “rising flow” of refugees crossing into the United States from Mexico.
In response to an appeal by Bishop James E. Dorff, who heads the joined conferences, Greg Forrester, UMCOR executive in charge of U.S. Disaster Response, expedited an emergency grant and told Bishop Dorff, “Our prayers are with you and the conference as you respond to this humanitarian crisis.”
In a letter to UMCOR that detailed Bishop Dorff’s request, the Rev. Laura Merrill, a United Methodist district superintendent who oversees two districts at the border, described “a refugee crisis, with large numbers of women with children and unaccompanied children crossing our border in search of safe haven.”
Rev. Merrill said the communities of the districts she oversees “are all involved in interfaith response,” providing “welcome centers” that offer showers, a change of clothes, food, basic medical care and when possible, a place to sleep overnight.  Click here for more information on the Immigration Crisis and Texas Churches’ Response.  To support this work financially make a contribution to UMCOR U.S. Disaster Response, Advance #901670 .
 
 
Ukraine Conflict Relief
This is an excerpt from John Calhoun, missionary in Ukraine.
As you are aware, it has been an extremely difficult time for the people of Ukraine.  The shooting down of a civilian aircraft over eastern Ukraine killed 298 innocent people from 10 countries.  The intense fighting between Ukrainian military forces and separatist rebels in the region leaves many dead and hundreds displaced each day. Recent ceasefires have been short-lived, and a diplomatic path away from violence and toward peace remains elusive.
The eastern Ukrainian city of Luhansk has been the site of particularly intense battles in recent days.  A lay leader of the local UMC congregation in Luhansk reports that church members are safe, but that more than half of the members have fled the city, seeking shelter among relatives and friends outside the conflict zone.
Local UMC congregations in other parts of Ukraine and in western Russia are helping the displaced in ways large and small, including raising funds for relief efforts in eastern Ukraine and providing shelter and food to recent arrivals from the conflict zone.
In Kyiv, our local congregations have expanded their ministry to persons displaced by the conflict.  Last week, the UMC in Ukraine received a grant from UMCOR  to provide emergency food assistance to families who have fled Crimea in recent months and taken shelter in a refugee center in Kyiv.
Some people I spoke with found it ‘strange’ (in a good way) that some far away church organization based in America is willing to support them.  My personal hope is that through this, these people will be able to see Jesus’ love from us, and perhaps would be willing to know more about it.  The full letter from John Calhoun is available and his Advance number is #13970Z.
 
 
   Middle East
Mrs. Jalele Ayyad, a 60-year-old Palestinian Christian woman in Gaza, was killed when an Israeli missile hit her house earlier this week. According to General Board of Global Ministries missionary the Rev. Alex Awad, who serves in Bethlehem, “The family received a warning but before they could run, a deadly missile hit the house, killed Jalele, injured her husband, and crippled their son.”
As story after heartbreaking story continues to come out of Israel and Palestine, and in particular Gaza, people of faith are praying for peace.  Reports indicate that as of July 30, there have been more than 1,300 Palestinians killed, most of them civilians. On the Israeli side, 56 Israeli soldiers, and three civilians have been killed.
Jorge Lockward who leads the United Methodist Global Praise program offered some guidance for concerned people who want to respond.  “The first, unavoidable, necessary, indispensable step is finding a way—any way—of being present. Present to the heart of God. Present to each other. Present to God’s children in Gaza,” he said.
On August 7 and 8, United Methodists, along with representatives of Palestinian Christian communities, including Awad, will gather at Ginghamsburg United Methodist Church in Ohio to explore how to be present, particularly with Palestinian Christians in the West Bank, Gaza and Israel.  
 
Link above will provide other links as well.
 
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VBS Mission Project Results

 
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Vacation Bible School is an amazing event!  Hundreds of folks, young and old participate every June and get to share the love of Jesus, make new friends, help others and have lots of fun!  Each year there is a Mission Outreach project to benefit the community, and here’s what was collected this year:
 
Day 1.  Mission Outreach to BUILD helping RELATIONSHIPS: diapers/wipes/money for Children in Need in our community Donated dozens of packages of diapers and wipes, etc ; given to Family Promise and Love Inc.
Day 2.  Mission Outreach to BUILD loving HOMES: money for Habitat for Humanity.  Donated $107.00
Day 3.  Mission Outreach to BUILD strong FAITH:  money to help build chapel at Intermountain. Donated $812.00
Day 4.  Mission Outreach to BUILD healthy BODIES:  collect food for the Gallatin Valley Food Bank.  Donated 250 lbs.
Day 5   Mission Outreach to BUILD smart BRAINS: collect used books for Mobile Library.   Donated 80 books.
 
THANK YOU to everyone who donated, organized, and helped distribute these goods and funds.  Your generosity makes a big difference to many people.
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A Mission Opportunity at Christus Collegium

Come join the Yellowstone Conference Mission Committee on an
UMVIM mission trip to Bozeman, Montana!
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Christus Collegium, the campus ministry building for MSU, is in need of repairs and updating in order to better serve Tuesday Nights Together (a.k.a. TNT), a strong United Methodist program bringing together college students for dinner, singing, worship and fellowship every week.  The building also serves as a meeting place for international students, the Lutheran campus ministry, housing for about 18 students, and MSU student associations.According to Dean Richardson, member of the Christus Board, “our poor building has been neglected far too long and now needs many improvements. You folks are just what we need to get the ball rolling, THANK YOU!”   This mission project will be the start of a three phase plan that will end with an improved kitchen, nicer sanctuary, and handicapped accessible bathroom and showers. 

The dates for this project are August 8 through August 11.  Come for one or come for all!   There are  many different tasks for many different abilities.  If you can push a broom there will be a job for you!  We need to install drywall and perfi-tape to walls; paint new drywall; sand, clean and re-stain wood paneling and trim and stain kitchen cabinet doors as well as do outdoor garden work.  And for the truly ambitious a new walk-in pantry needs to be framed and drywalled.

We will have accommodations at the Hall and prepare our meals in the kitchen.  We are asking for a $25 per person per night donation to cover food and other miscellaneous expenses.  If you have dry wall taping tools and hand tools such as hammers, drill/drivers, saws, utility knives, etc. please bring them – they will be very welcome.  If your church would like to have a fundraiser to help purchase paint, drywall etc. that would be most appreciated.  Just like college students, the program is on a tight budget and all donations and cookies are gladly accepted!

Please contact Debbie Irby, UMVIM Coordinator for Yellowstone Conference if you would like to join the team!   dirby@stpaulshelena.org.    We will need to know if you are coming by Tuesday, August  5 but registering much sooner if you can would be great!



Youth Mission 2014

Duffel bags, suitcases, sleeping bags, coolers, boxes of food, gloves, swimsuits, sunscreen, pillows, notebooks, tools, cheerful spirits and lots of energy — stuff them all into the van and hit the road for Colorado!  Our Youth Mission Team travels  July 13 – 21 to work on flood relief projects in the Boulder area.  Last fall the area was devastated by floods and our team will help rebuild.

This year’s team is made up of 19 youth ad 5 adults.  Youth must be going into high school through recent high school graduates.  Adult chaperones can be of any age as long as they’re willing to work hard, pray hard, cook, sleep on the floor, and spend a week with some wonderful kids.

Our congregation can support the Youth Mission Trip with your prayers and financial contributions.  There is a sign-up sheet in the narthex where you can sponsor a youth worker for only $25, and they will send you a postcard from their adventure.  If you won’t be at the church to sign up, just call the office at 586-5413.  Your support is greatly appreciated!



Vacation Bible School is for all ages!

One of the great things about Vacation Bible School (VBS) is that it lets people of all ages work together in a fun, exciting, loving environment.  For this year’s Workshop of Wonders we had folks from newborns to over 80 years old — this year there were 20 people in the 70 to 80 year-old age bracket!  VBS classes are for kids going into Kindergarten through 6th grade, but Middle School and High School kids get to be Youth Assistants.  They help the adult leaders and mentor the kids in their group. The result is a wonderful intergenerational experience where stories of Jesus’ love are shared.  Because VBS is sponsored by four churches in town, people from a variety of denominations get to work together, too.

 

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An important part of VBS is Mission Outreach, and this year that meant supporting five different groups: 

 Monday  (Story of Esther…“Imagine with God!” ) Mission Outreach to BUILD helping RELATIONSHIPS: collect diapers/wipes/money for Children in Need in our community ie: Family Promise, Love Inc, etc) 

Tuesday –  (Ezra… “Build with God!”).  Mission Outreach to BUILD loving HOMES: collect money for Habitat for Humanity 

Wednesday –  (Jesus parable of Mustard Seed … “Grow with God!”).  Mission Outreach to BUILD strong FAITH:  Collect money to help build chapel at Intermountain.
Thursday – (Jesus Feeds 5000 … “Work with God!”).  Mission Outreach to BUILD healthy BODIES:  collect food for the Gallatin Valley Food Bank
Friday – (Emmaus … “Walk with God!”).  Mission Outreach to BUILD smart BRAINS: collect used books for Mobile Library
 

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