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"Ignite tremendously encouraged me as a youth leader and inspired our youth. The speakers brought such a depth of experience to the event; they were absolutely terrific. Keep up the great work, as we witness God move through our youth." 

Momentum builds for IGNITE 

Youth leaders throughout GNJ are gearing up for IGNITE, Sept. 30-Oct. 3. Don't miss out on the biggest youth event of 2016 when over 1,000 students grades 6-12 gather in Wildwood to worship, fellowship and grow in their walk with God. Price breaks available through August 31. Click here to register and see the artist lineup, schedule and lodging info.

Tune into IGNITE

Listen here and share the new IGNITE radio spot. 

2016 Laity Leadership Academy

Take advantage of one of GNJ's primary resources to equip lay leaders. Join one of four tracks to empower your leadership. Register for the 2016 Laity Leadership Academy now.
Sept. 10, 7:45 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. at The Mission and Resource Center.

United Methodists throughout the conference are working toward the goal of $12 million to help rebuild homes, save lives and inspire local church mission. Learn how you and your congregation can join the campaign.

Circles of Hope update 

We are thankful for the generosity of our churches who save lives and help rebuild homes with their gifts to the Mission Fund. We're updating our Circles of Hope in September. Have you renewed your support for the Mission Fund? Click here to see the list of churches in each Hope Circle. 

Day of Hope, Health and Family 

St. Paul Church and Day Care is having a Day of Hope, Health and Family Fair providing health screenings, games, and entertainment. Funds will be raised for A Future With Hope and Imagine No Malaria. Aug. 27, 11 am - 3 pm at 739 Mt. Prospect Ave, Newark, NJ. For more information call 973-485-0420 or email Pastor Rolando.
A Future With Hope is the mission arm of the United Methodist Church of Greater NJ dedicated to helping families with Sandy recovery and developing Communities of Hope resourcing for our congregations.

Pledge, Race, Join, Rebuild 

Nearly four years since Hurricane Sandy and many families are still displaced. Your support continues the recovery process through rebuilding. Volunteers, athletes, community members and partners will united through Race2Rebuild, a national organization of endurance athletes who race to bring families home after disasters. Race2Rebuild is partnering with A Future With Hope for its Atlantic City race on August 14. 

Click here to Volunteer to rebuild in Atlantic City with A Future With Hope and Race2Rebuild on Aug. 13

Click here to race the DelMoSports Atlantic City Triathlon and 5K on Aug. 14 in Atlantic City. 

Weekend volunteers wanted 

We're equipped to accommodate volunteers for the summer, fall and winter with flexible extended weekend crews for you and your congregation. Teams of 4 or more should email Lisa Park or call 732-359-1012 to schedule a team of volunteers.

Meal Volunteers needed for Highlands Host Site

Provide a meal for teams helping with Sandy rebuilding over the next few weeks. Click here to sign up or email Ellen Korpar. You can also call 732-598-4877

Grieving Class at Mission and Resource Center 

The Landscape of Loss: Pastoral Care in Situations of Grief and Loss will be held Aug. 30 - Dec. 7, 2016 on Tuesdays, 5-7:30 p.m. at the GNJ Mission and Resource Center. This three credit class led by Rev. Dr. Virginia Samuel, will study various dimensions of the experiences of death and grief. For more information and to register, email Rev. Dr. Amy Jones or call 973-408-3084

GNJ Small Group Symposium at Drew

Clergy and local seminary students are invited to dig into the scholarship and theology behind small groups at a symposium sponsored by the Northern Region Resource Team and hosted at Drew. On Oct. 20 from 8:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m., experts from Greater New Jersey and beyond will lead panels followed by discussions and workshops. Cost is $30 for clergy and $15 for students. Click here for more information.


The Connection 

Are you taking "balcony time" to step back and organize your life, asking questions about what your ministry needs in order to be most effective? Check out the new Connectional Ministries Team blog post by Trey Wince, Director of New Disciples, and explore his three stage checklist here.

GNJ's Judy Colorado elected to GCFA board 

Gateway North District Lay Leader and Chair of GNJ's Committee on Ethnic Local Church Concerns, Judy Colorado, was elected Recording Secretary. The General Council on Finance and Administration (GCFA) Board of Directors for the denomination in Nashville last month. Check out the press release here.

Join our Dynamic Team of Talent 

Are you thirsting for creativity, inspiration and innovation? Do you want to take your skills to the next level? GNJ is seeking an experienced administrative assistant who is committed to excellence. Are you a fit? Please click here to view position requirements and apply. 

Enhance your worship experience at Doxology in Nov. 

Join worship leader Kurtis Parks and leaders from around GNJ for a day of exploring new ways to bring the worship experience to life. Are you involved in your congregations worship? If so you won't want to miss this; Doxology: A Worship Conference on Nov. 12, sponsored by the Central Region and open to all clergy and lay in Greater New Jersey. Find out more and register here.

Korean and Spanish Resources for Team Vital

“팀 바이탈(Team Vital)  한국어 자료 열람 가능”
Recursos en español disponibles para equipo vital 

Meeting the needs of Korean and Spanish congregations, Team Vital resources have been translated and can be accessed here. Check out the overviews and share with your congregation as you consider joining Team Vital. 

Pathways 2 Prosperity Volunteer Training Aug. 17

If you're looking to explore new service opportunities and learn about poverty, Pathways 2 Prosperity is hosting an informational volunteer training Aug. 17 from 6:30 - 8:30 p.m. at 65 Newton Sparta Rd., Newton, NJ. This innovative program helps families and individuals reach financial independence. RSVP encouraged but walk-ins welcome. Email Dianna Morrison or call 973.383.4787 for more info. 

Apply for Campus Ministry Grant by Aug. 23

Is your church near a college campus? The Conference Board of Higher Education and Ministry is offering a limited number of $1,000 grants to help start or grow your campus ministry. Click here to submit your application by Aug. 23 or email Rev. Hyun-Bo Shim with questions.


Volunteers in Mission Leadership Training 

Are you interested in learning more about being a United Methodist Volunteers in Mission (UMVIM) team leader or hosting mission teams? Join Rev. Tom Lank on Nov. 5, from 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. at the Mission and Resource Center. Click here for more information and to register. 

UMVIM Clean Water for Haiti Trip

GNJ United Methodist Volunteers in Mission (UMVIM) is helping to bring clean water to Haiti. Lead a UMVIM team to Haiti, Jan. 7-14, 2017, join the GNJ Water Filtration Team or donate to the GNJ Clean Water for Haiti fund. Click here for more information, call 732-865-3730 or email Kathy Ahmad for more to find out more. 

Certified Lay Ministers Scholarships 

Limited scholarship opportunities are being offered by The Board of Laity for people in the Certified Lay Ministry process who cannot afford the psychological assessment fee. Click here to find out more.


Help Wanted 

Pinelands Center at Mount Misery is seeking a part-time kitchen, housekeeping and maintenance staff member with a heart for serving and team work to work weekends and evenings. A Program Internship is also available for college students. Click here for more information. If interested, call 609-893-3354 or send an email. 

Volunteer Day 

Take part in the Pinelands Center Volunteer day on Sept. 17, 11:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Be a part of a wide-range of projects. Call 609.893.3354 or email to register your group. 


GNJ Finance and Administration


3 new dental insurance plans from Guardian 

Three new dental plans, including a managed care plan with a multi-state network, will be introduced during September, effective Jan. 1, 2017. The two current Horizon plans will terminate on Dec. 31, 2016. GNJ will hold 3 in-person informational meetings and a web conference. Look for information in the mail for qualified participants. Click here for more information. 

2017 Health Insurance Church Premiums 

The Conference Board of Pension and Health Benefits (CBOPHB) has set the health insurance premium rates for local churches, effective January 1, 2017. Click here to see the 2017 annual rates in comparison with those of this year. 

Church Conference Reports

In keeping with the Maintenance to Mission plan, church conference forms have been made electronic for our pastors and church leaders to complete, creating an easily accessible system. We have completed the first phase of our database conversion to a new database system, Arena, with new church conference reports now available online. All clergy and churches were sent emails August 1 with instructions. If you have questions, please don't hesitate to email questions Jessica Storer.



Bishops share thoughts on racial violence 

Bishops from areas that have faced mass shootings, shootings of African-American men by police or killings of police, talk about the role of the church in addressing such violence. Click here to watch the video.

The UM Interpreter Magazine wants to hear from you

The Interpreter, the monthly magazine of The United Methodist Church, wants to know how your faith helps you navigate change. Share your response in 50-75 words and include your name, church, city, state, and whether you're lay or clergy. Responses will be published in the print magazine and online. Click here to email your thoughts and submit your answers

Judicial Council sets docket for October meeting 

The United Methodist Church Judicial Council has posted an 11-item docket for its Oct. 25-28 meeting. Also listed are three items currently under review, requiring executive committee or full council action to be placed on docket. Read full docket here.

Communication News and Tips 

Conference Journals - Order by August 15

There's less than two weeks to order a hard copy of the 2016 Conference Journal. If you’d like a bound, printed copy, click here. Printed journals are available free to all retired clergy upon request and all others for a fee of $18. Journals will be available for review and download on the website. No CD-ROMs will be produced this year.

Relay stories posted 

Can't wait for your August Relay? Click here to see advanced release of new articles from an interfaith peace service at Calvary Dumont, IGNITE artist features, Team Vital in action with Cape May UMC, and a new arts ministry at Jackson UMC. The August edition of The Relay newspaper will be available next week in print and online. 

Interpretation equipment available 

GNJ has interpretation equipment available for agencies, committees and other groups so your next event or service can be interpreted in up to four languages. Click here to request use of this equipment.

Reserve Space at the Mission and Resource Center 

Let the Mission and Resource Center serve you. Click here to fill out the Conference Meeting Room request form and reserve space for your congregation, agency, or committee.

How to Get in The Relay and Digest

Have a good story idea for The Relay? Contact Josh Kinney at jkinney@gnjumc.org, Do you have information for The Digest? Contact gnjdigest@gnjumc.org. The deadline to send news for the following month's Relay is the 15th of each month. The deadline to send news to the Digest is noon every Tuesday.
Copyright © 2016 The United Methodist Church of Greater New Jersey, All rights reserved.

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