Throughout the month of October, voting will occur in the US National Conference churches. Adult members will select laypersons and ministers to represent their conference at the 2005 US National Conference, and will also cast votes concerning three referendum items. Each church needs to appoint a board of tellers to oversee the voting. The conference will provide enough ballots for each member in your church, as well as other information. A number of resources concerning the voting are available online, though most will be sent to your church from the conference.

Various items regarding the initiative to join with the Missionary Church have been sent to all UB local churches in the United States, or will soon be sent. Other information is available on the UB website.

  • Information Sheets. Four information sheets were sent to all churches at the beginning of August. They are designed to be duplicated and inserted in church bulletins, if appropriate, but can also be used in other ways. All four can be downloaded.
  • “Joining Forces” Video. A 14-minute video has been sent to each church. It includes a short introduction by Bishop Paul Hirschy, and then statements from three Missionary Church officials regarding the vision and ministry of the Missionary Church. All churches are encouraged to show this to their congregation prior to the October elections, preferably as part of a church service or congregational meeting.
  • Online Statements. A number of UB people have submitted statements regarding the possibility of joining the Missionary Church–both in favor, and not in favor. You can find them here.
  • Missionary Church Materials. The Missionary Church headquarters provided a variety of printed materials which were sent in a packet to each UB church in the United States. The packet includes a brief snapshot of the Missionary Church district your church would most likely become part of, if the joining takes place. Pastors are encouraged to make this material available to their congregations.
  • Informational Meetings. Several informational meetings have been scheduled, including five within Central Conference. Meetings have also been scheduled in several local churches, at the request of pastors.

Hurricane Francis caused damage at two of our churches in Florida, both in the Daytona area on the east side of the state.

A large part of Faith UB church in Port Orange was destroyed. The building was condemned by the city and must be torn down.

The Daytona UB church, located in Holly Hill, needs a new roof. So does the parsonage.

A Florida Hurricane Relief Fund has been established to help.

The United Brethren Headquarters is undergoing a transition in the position of Finance Director. Janet Bilyew, our present Finance Director, will leave us at the end of July. Janet has worked at the UB Heaquarters since the early 1970s, longer than anyone else. She has accepted a position in Fort Wayne, just a few miles from her home. She will be greatly missed.

Janet’s replacement has been found in the person of Jane Jordan. She is moving to the Huntington area, and started with us on July 19. Her husband is in the Navy and is being transferred from Seattle; he is about reach to begin a six-month submarine tour. Jane will be in the Huntington area for an extended period before her husband is then transferred to Virginia Beach.

Kanchoon Lee, pastor of The Forever Love Church, next to his church's sign.

First UB (Findlay, Ohio) has been involved with a new church plant in Findlay. First, they parented the Faith Community Church in a mother-daughter situation. Now they are fostering a new Korean congregation. Because of the University of Findlay, the city has a large Korean population.

Kangchoon Lee is a church planting pastor from Korea. He has planted two churches in Korea and is now planting a Korean congregation in the United States. He is partnering with First UB to start a new congregation called, in English, “The Forever Love Church.” Currently, the church is running around 12 individuals. Once school starts, the numbers will escalate.

The First United Brethren Church is supplying the building, along with partnering in ministry. Also, First UB will provide an “English as a Second Language” course for the Koreans. This is very similar to the course that our missionaries teach in Macau.

On June 27, Colwood UB (Caro, Mich.) dedicated a new 28,000 square-foot addition. Sandra Whipple writes, “We are blessed with a great group of dedicated laity that did almost all of the interior work on a wonderful building that includes a new sanctuary, children’s center, and an administrative wing. We also remodeled our old sanctuary into a youth center.”

During the week of July 12, Colwood did VBS using the Lava Lava Island curriculum. Sandra writes, “Our building was transformed into a jungle island. It was a wonderful week that was topped off on Wednesday and Thursday evenings, when 72 kids made first-time commitments to Jesus Christ. Over 400 kids and parents shared in a luau together on Friday night.”

West Windsor UB (Dimondale, Mich.) held a surprise 90th birthday party for Rholland “Archie” Carpenter on Sunday, July 18, during the Sunday school hour. He still attends every Sunday, and can quickly recall Bible verses for any subject they happen to be discussing. Among the 44 people attending were 16 Carpenters, mostly cousins, nieces, and nephews of Archie.

Archie and Cora Carpenter hosted the West Windsor church in their living room for many years before the current building was constructed. They are church patriarchs. Cora died a few years ago. Their daughter, Carol, who retired from school-teaching several years back, now takes care of Archie. He was the first Christian in his family, which included 11 brothers and three sisters.

First UB of Findlay, Ohio, held its 4th annual community block party on Saturday, July 17. This concluded a week-long VBS that saw 14 decisions for Christ. In preparation for this party, individuals within the congregation blitzed the neighborhood with fliers and personal invitations. On Saturday, the church prepared games, food, and entertainment that was all 100% free to everyone. Individuals from the community showed up, and the next Sunday, one individual even visited the church.