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In this Issue:
- A Message from Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey
- A Message from Jennifer Swann, Conference Lay Leader
- Fall Board of Laity Meeting Updates
- Mission Moment: Wheelchair Ramps in Shreveport District
- Disaster Recovery
- Upcoming UMW Event
- Save the Date: Annual Conference 2022
- General & Jurisdictional Conference Update
A Message from Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey
Greetings in the name of Jesus Christ.
I am thrilled to have the opportunity to connect with you. These are interesting and challenging times to lead the church. Your role as well as mine is being redefined each day as we adapt to our ever-changing contexts.
Not only have we been challenged by the storm of the COVID-19 pandemic but we have also faced literal storm after storm. While we are resilient people, I recognize that we are all weary. And yet, even in our weariness and perhaps because of our weariness we find rest in knowing that in all things, God is with us.
I have seen you respond to our most recent storm in remarkable and miraculous ways while continuing to respond to the ongoing recovery work in Southwest Louisiana. You have truly been the church, a beacon, a light in what has often seemed like a dark place. YOU have been the light of Christ! You have risen and responded to God’s call to love your neighbor.
I have never been more excited to say that I am the bishop of the Louisiana Conference. I know God has much in store for us and while the future may feel uncertain, I am certain that God is here working through each of you.
May God continue to bless and keep you.
Grace and Peace,
Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey
A Message from Jennifer Swann, Conference Lay Leader
Greetings Laity of the United Methodist Church,
The theme for our United Methodist Laity for this quadrennium is “Rise Up!” This year in particular we reflect on 2 Tim 1:3-7: I thank God whom I serve with a clear conscience, as did my fathers, when I remember you constantly in my prayers. As I remember your tears, I long night and day to see you, that I may be filled with joy. I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, dwells in you. Hence I remind you to rekindle the gift of God that is within you through the laying on of my hands; for God did not give us a spirit of timidity but a spirit of power and love and self-control.
As we walk through the challenges of our time as faithful disciples of Jesus Christ, we remember that we are merely the latest chapter in God’s amazing story. Although God’s people have never been here before, we serve a great and powerful God whose Kingdom is not and has never been in trouble; who has continued to call us into that Kingdom work in good times and in bad; and who has always provided everything we have needed for the work we are called to do.
Rise up and join us and United Methodist Laity across the globe as we remember and revive God’s gift for our unique time.
Conference Lay Leader
Fall Board of Laity Meeting Updates
The Board of Laity met on October 2, 2021 via Zoom. At this meeting, the Board welcomed several new members: Angie Comeaux from Lafayette, Libby Shackelford from Baton Rouge, and Kathleen Conrad from New Orleans.
A main focus of this meeting was strategizing about relaunching Lay Leadership trainings. The Board discussed the possibilities of holding trainings via Zoom, in-person, or using the hybrid method. The Board plans to work to come up with a cohesive plan to inform and hold Lay Leader trainings as it is safe to do so.
The Board continues to strive to provide clear and consistent communication with the lay people of the Louisiana Conference. In fact, this newsletter is part of that effort!
If someone you know would like to receive this newsletter, they can sign up below.
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Mission Moment: Wheelchair Ramps, Shreveport District
The Shreveport District is sharing God's love through several fruitful wheelchair ramp ministries. This year alone, over 40 wheelchair ramps have been built across the area. Way to go, Shreveport District, for your incredible work!
Hurricane response and recovery continues in both Southwest and Southeast Louisiana. To find out how you can help, visit the conference website at https://www.la-umc.org/
Upcoming UMW Event
Join The United Methodist Women of the Louisiana Conference for their annual meeting on Saturday, November 13, 2021 at First United Methodist Church of Lafayette with an online option. This meeting is open to all and the focus will be on mission. Please register at the link below if you'd like to attend.
Save the Date: Annual Conference 2022
The Louisiana Conference's 2022 annual conference session will be back to an in-person event and will be held the week of June 13-17 (specific days with specific events will be released soon) in Baton Rouge, at the River Center, located downtown.
General & Jurisdictional Conference Update
We hope you joined us online during AC Laity Session in May 2021 and heard our General and Jurisdictional Conference update by the head of the lay delegation, Sarah Kreutziger. The global pandemic and the fact that General Conference requires international travel for our foreign delegates makes the path forward more complicated than we would wish. Know that the work continues and we will share additional information as soon as we know.
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