January 21, 2020




December’s Mission of the Month is Red Bird Mission in Henderson, Kentucky. This mission has been doing ministry in rural Appalachia since 1921. The Red Bird Mission provides a Christian K-12 school and a community health center that has created opportunities for low-income, underinsured, and uninsured people in this remote rural area.  The mission creates opportunities for better lives through Christ-centered service in the Red Bird Missionary Conference.
         In the past, we have supported this mission through collecting Campbell Soup labels (this is no longer done there) and sending several mission teams to work helping the people.
Please consider giving generously to this very worthy mission. –Beth Clark
January’s Mission of the Month is the Wesley Campus Ministry at Northern Michigan University in Marquette.  Who do you call when your car breaks down and needs repairs and you don’t know local garages, or you break up with your significant other, or there’s a death in your family, or you need to see a doctor and you’re at college, hours from home? Wesley Campus Ministry on the campus of NMU, overseen by Erica Thomas, is a great place for young adults to hang out, network, and form life-long friendships. Such havens act as a home away from home for college students where they can gather in fellowship with others who share common spiritual bonds.
      There currently is a drop-in style coffee house hosted at the building with a variety of hours Monday through Friday. Every Sunday, the group shares and prepares a community meal and devotional time. Erica Thomas can be reached at (805)710-4752 or email atvmqthope.com. The Wesley Campus Ministry is housed at 927 W. Fair Ave. in Marquette, close to NMU campus.—Heidi Harwell
                                                                                 Your offerings will be greatly appreciated!
Peace On Earth, Goodwill to All
At Advent we proclaim that God’s light has shone in the darkness, and is not overcome by that darkness, no matter its depth, and that this light will come again and again. At Advent, we tell the story in Luke of one whose birth was greeted with the proclamation, “Peace on earth, goodwill toward all.”
Live in the light. Work for peace. Embody goodwill. Do justice. Love kindness. We may need to wait from time to time to determine how best to do justice, how most adequately to embody kindness, but then we hear the question, “What are you waiting for?”
      I hope you have a blessed Advent and Christmas. May God’s light in Jesus warm you within and surround you without. May you be blessed, and may you bless others. One way I hope you seek to love kindness and be a blessing is through contributing to this year’s bishop’s Advent offering which will again be dedicated to disaster relief, here in Michigan, in the United States, and throughout the world. Thank you for considering a gift to this special effort.
      Blessed Advent. Joyous Christmas. Thank you.
David A. Bard
Presiding Bishop David Alan Bard
Give online at MichiganUMC.org or via check, please add “Bishop’s Advent Appeal” in the memo line.

October’s Mission of the Month is the World Communion Special Offering through The United Methodist Church.

      The World Communion Scholarship Program of The United Methodist Church supports United Methodist students and students who relate directly to the General Board of Global Ministries mission partners, so that they may carry out their master’s or doctoral studies at universities or seminaries.
      For example, consider Ofelia Duldulao. The World Communion scholarship made it possible for Ofelia to finish graduate studies uninterrupted, instead of needing to take time off to earn money. A teacher by profession, Duldulao attends University of the Philippines in Quezon City, preparing for a master’s degree in environmental education, a passion of Duldulao, an environmental activist. She has a B.S. in biology, as well as a degree in secondary education.
      The scholarship, she said, has been an inspiration. “I am constantly reminded of the opportunity and the trust given to us scholars,” she said. “The support comes from people, from churches, believing we will serve the people through God’s ministries.
      The scholarship also allows her to be active in the church and community while attending school. She is able to serve as a speaker and educator for various campaigns in Nueva Vizcaya, helping to solve identified problems and training leaders in speaking, teaching, and community-organizing skills.
      Duldulao recently returned from Africa University in Zimbabwe, where she attended an Environmental Scholars Gathering with seven other Global Ministries-funded environmental studies and related scholars. They explored creation-care ministry and environmental programs to offer local churches around the globe.
      “I believe God provided me with this opportunity of being a scholar of Global Ministries to work in church and the community,” she said, “to be part of the church’s work and to lead church members to help in the community work.” Please give to this Mission of the Month!
Learning Session Highlights By Patty Ronan
      The Learning Session hosted on September 14 by Trinity’s Mission Team was informative and interesting. The two speakers, Pastor Mike Flowers (Spirit Lake, North Dakota) and Executive Director Nancy Pellegrini (Habitat for Humanity, Kingsford, Michigan) spoke of “ministry with” people in their communities.
      Pastor Flowers shared his experience working with the Dakota Native Americans. To my surprise, it was how he did it. He and his wife Libby didn’t go into the community handing out Bibles, or knocking on doors, or telling the people if you don’t believe that Jesus died for your sins and is the Lord, you are going to Hell. No, they listened and learned from the people by not carrying a Bible, attended basketball games, funerals, tribal events, and ways respectfully. They continued to do this for 18 months until slowly, people started asking questions. The people shared their stories. This was only the beginning of “ministry with” the Dakota Native Americans.
      Pastor Flowers spoke of Generational Trauma, passed down from generation to generation, through stories telling of the atrocities committed by Christian immigrants from other countries across the great waters. These Christians thought the Indians had no belief in God or Jesus. Of course, they were wrong. The Indians have a deep spirituality, but back then it didn’t matter.
      This model of Generational Trauma is still occurring today in many places in the world, including here in America. Muslims, Jews, immigrants of all nations coming to America legally or illegally are experiencing something similar. Hearing about this made me see more clearly, and it isn’t pretty or easy for me to take an honest look at my beliefs.
      Nancy Pellegrini spoke of what Habitat for Humanity is involved in doing in our communities. They have built 19 new homes, provided ramps to people in need, replaced windows, sidewalks, and done other repairs to homes. People need to meet a financial need, and they pay Habitat for Humanity back according to what they can afford monthly, volunteer in the office so many hours, or help as a volunteer helping others repair their homes. They pay only for the material, and the volunteers are from Habitat for Humanity, people who volunteer just to help their fellow man, businesses, churches, and others.
      Nancy has resources to help people, and if she can’t, as Director of Habitat for Humanity, she can refer the person to the right place. Just in the last year, 19 new homes were built, windows, doors, sidewalks, ramps, repairs to homes, and much more was completed.
      “Ministry with” people can be accomplished in a variety of ways, not just by congregations, but neighbors, businesses, and organizations. The Learning Session taught us that it can be accomplished.
Remember, we are all children of God!

The September 12 Feeding America Distribution Went Well! It was a gray day, but praise God, the rain held off! Thank you to all those who volunteered to help with unloading the truck and distributing the food. There was lots of warmth and interaction between volunteers and guests.

The number of households served was 303 (708 individuals). One-hundred-ten of those individuals were senior citizens, 198 were children, and 50 were veterans. This was a big increase from the June distribution: 251 households (578 individuals), 122 seniors, 102 children, and only 28 veterans. The word must be getting out—especially to families with children and veterans.

We celebrate all the volunteers who took time to participate. We at Trinity are developing a wonderful partnership with the people at the Cornerstone Community Church, who are deeply involved with the planning and legwork of this valuable ministry in our community. It is a beautiful thing when we can make friends in Christ with other communities of faith!

Car Care Clinic, Saturday, September 14 at Grace UMC in Norway. If you’d like to volunteer to help, call John Dedo at (906)282-4693. Come for a couple of hours or all day. It’s fun! This event is sponsored by United Men in Ministry.
September’s Mission of the Month   By Patty Ronan
      Last month, the Mission of the Month was God's Country Cooperative Parish in Newberry, Michigan, CCMM #3044, which hosts VIM mission teams in the summer to do home repairs and improvements in our communities, and coordinate food and clothing distribution.
      Part of becoming an Engage MI congregation requires Trinity UMC to give money to at least one designated UMC Mission person. Randy Hildebrant, Advance #982961 Church & Community Worker, assigned to God's Country Cooperative Parish, Newberry, Michigan, was chosen by our Mission Team to be September’s Mission of the Month.
      Randy has served 13 years as a Church and Community Worker serving the Rural Revitalization Project of Elktown District in Nebraska Conference, and the Jubilee Project, an Appalachian Ministry based in Sneedville, Tennessee in Houston Annual Conference. He is committed to ‘ministry with’ projects helping God's children grow in faith, self-esteem, and hope in their lives.
      I spoke briefly with Randy on the phone, and one of his statements was, quote: “I do enjoy preaching when I can, but I love hands-on missionary work.”  He is married and has two children in college.
Please give to September’s Mission of the Month.

Light at the Inn Statistics, 2018 – 2019 Season
        Here are the statistics for the past shelter season. Granted, these are only numbers, but behind these numbers are the lives of our guests. Thank you so much for making this winter season easier for them.
· The shelter was open for 21 weeks or 147 nights, November 4, 2018 to March 31, 2019
· The shelter was occupied all 147 nights – a minimum of five guests, maximum of 14
· Total individual guests: 33 - four males, nine females. Six of these were veterans.
· Total bed-nights: 891 (number of guests per night, times the number of nights)
· Average age: 17 guests were 18 to 40 years; 16 guests were 40 years or older
· Length of stay per guest ranged from one night to 75 nights
· Twenty-one guests stayed more than one week; 13 guests stayed more than one month
· Eleven of our guests were able to secure their own apartments. One gentleman returned to his own home
· Five guests chose to move to the Abundant Life Mission in Menominee, Michigan, either during the season or at the close
        Host Churches: Our Saviour’s Lutheran, Trinity United Methodist, Redemption Hill, First Covenant of Iron Mountain, Norway Covenant, St. Mary/St. Barbara of Norway, and Bethany Lutheran/Grace United Methodist of Norway.