The Call newsletter: May 27, 2022

The Call newsletter: May 27, 2022

Where does my help come from?

I didn’t much care for the news this week. When children are gunned down in their classrooms, the things that dominate conversations in my world or on the news feeds really doesn't seem to matter. Disaffiliation. Johnny Depp. Price of gas.
Since Tuesday’s slaughter in Uvalde, Texas, I didn’t want to get louder, like so many others did. I wanted to get quieter. I wanted to lift my eyes toward the hills, toward the maker of heaven and earth, and then get busy doing his work.
That work, for you, might be what United Methodist Council of Bishops President Thomas J. Bickerton urged clergy and laity to do on Wednesday. “Let’s go on the offense,” he said.
Read the UM News story, below, to find out what Bickerton is urging us to do and what other United Methodists are doing in response to Uvalde. Because there should never be another Uvalde.
Don't miss the great story about two staff members from Munsey Memorial UMC who are riding their bikes toward the hills to raise money for Ukraine.
Annette Spence
Editor, The Call

  Top Stories   

Grieving, praying after attack on school 

United Methodists are stepping up to provide prayer and support after a shooting at an elementary school that took the lives of at least 19 children and two teachers. Council of Bishops President Thomas J. Bickerton is urging laity and clergy to “go on the offense” to stop mass shootings. From UM NewsRead story.
Bicyclists will climb mountains to raise money for  Ukraine

Staff members of Munsey Memorial UMC are raising money for Ukraine by bicycling 102 mountainous miles from East Tennessee to Western North Carolina. The plan is for Steve Wheeler, 73, and John Redmond, 43, to arrive in Lake Junaluska a few hours before the Holston Annual Conference begins its June 5-8 session. From The Call. Read story.

Recent rulings shape annual conference season

As U.S. annual conference season gets underway, the church regional bodies are dealing with recent decisions by The United Methodist Church's top court about disaffiliations. The Judicial Council has ruled that under current church law, individual churches can leave but whole conferences cannot. From UM NewsRead story.
Ruling opens door for bishop elections in 2022

The United Methodist Church's top court ruled that the Council of Bishops has the authority to call jurisdictional conferences this year to elect and assign new U.S. episcopal leaders but not to change the date when those new bishops take office. From UM NewsRead story.
Police make arrest in pastor’s slaying

Many are mourning the Rev. Marita Y. Harrell, a 57-year-old United Methodist pastor in Atlanta who was stabbed to death on or before May 18. Police in DeKalb County, part of the Metro Atlanta area, said they have arrested a suspect and obtained warrants for murder and arson. A TV station reported that Harrell had been mentoring and counseling the suspect. From UM NewsRead story.
The List: Heritage of hope

We could use a little hope right now. Actually, more than a little. Here are a few churches that are so full of hope, they stake their names on it. 
  • Mt. Hope UMC | Mohawk, TN
  • Mt. Hope UMC | Fries, VA
  • New Hope UMC | Philadelphia, TN
  • New Hope UMC | New River, VA
  • New Hope UMC | Nickelsville, VA
  • New Hope Union UMC | Bastian, VA

   Photo of the Week   

Forty staff at Camp Wesley Woods enjoy the waterfall this week during staff training in Townsend, Tennessee. This week and next, staff at all five Holston camps are training in preparation for a busy summer season, says the Rev. Mary Thompson, Holston Conference Camp and Retreat Ministries executive director. On June 3, all camp staff will join at Cokesbury UMC in Knoxville, where Bishop Debra Wallace-Padgett will preach, serve communion, and commission them for ministry. (Photo by Katie Wade)
Holston Annual Conference
June 5-8, Lake Junaluska. Find out more.
United Methodist Church
June 12: Peace With Justice Sunday. Get resources.
Holston United Women in Faith
July 22-23: Mission u in Knoxville. More info.
Holston Calendar
UMC Calendar
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The Call is Holston Conference's weekly newsletter for 850 United Methodist congregations in East Tennessee, Southwest Virginia, and North Georgia. Contact Annette Spence, editor, at