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    The Upper New York Conference of The United Methodist Church


    news article

    Bishop Webb invites all to attend UMM fall retreat

    February 6, 2018 / By Kathleen Christiansen

    The Upper New York Conference’s United Methodist Men will host their fall retreat Sept. 7 and 8 at Sky Lake Camp & Retreat Center in Windsor. The theme of this year’s event is “Transformation through Christ: Turn 180°.” The retreat is open to people from all denominations and communities; and, for the first time, it will not only be open to men, but also to women.

    “The UMM are moving in a different direction with this retreat,” said Sanjay Solomon, the communications manager for the UNY Conference’s United Methodist Men. “We are trying to be more inclusive and are changing our mindset to accommodate people of all age groups and genders. We are welcoming to new ideas, embracing change, and our theme for this retreat is the vision our President Mark Jones. His legacy is change, and we need to embrace change in everything we do as UMM.”

    All denominations and communities will be included this year because, Solomon said, other denominations and communities are also involved in UMC missions, such Baptists churches that are involved in the Red Bird Mission.

    The 2018 UMM fall retreat keynote speaker is Bishop James Swanson, of the Mississippi Conference of The United Methodist Church.

    Bishop Swanson graduated from Southern Bible College in Houston and Charles H. Mason Theological Seminary in Atlanta. He was ordained as an elder in the South Georgia Conference and served as pastor of St. Mary’s Road UMC in Columbus, Ga., for 14 years, where the church grew from 16 active members to 950. He was elected to the episcopacy in 2004 and is currently the president of the General Commission on United Methodist Men.

    Other guest speakers include the Rev. Mark Kimpland – pastor at the Endwell UMC – and Upper New York Area Resident Bishop Mark J. Webb, who recently invited people to attend the retreat in a video.

    “I ask that you mark your calendars now, as I have, and keep watching Conference communication channels for more information on our time together and how to be a part of this exciting event,” he said in the video. 

    Click here to view Bishop Webb’s video. Click here for a PowerPoint slide you can feel free to use to promote the event.

    Solomon said retreat attendees can expect a spiritually fulfilling and uplifting experience with the Lord and a dynamic speaker in Bishop Swanson. He said there will also be breakout sessions for men and women, as well as a praise band.

    The retreat, including a one-night stay and three meals, costs $130. The cost for commuters attending just Friday is $40, with dinner included. The cost for commuters attending Friday and Saturday is $60, including meals.

    Full registration details to come.


    With more than 168,000 members, the Upper New York Annual (Regional) Conference of The United Methodist Church comprises 867 local churches and 65 new faith communities in 12 districts, covering 48,000 square miles in 49 of the 62 counties in New York state. Our mission is to “live the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to be God’s love with our neighbors in all places."