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    The Upper New York Conference of The United Methodist Church


    News Stories from June 2021

    Board of Trustees offers updates at Annual Conference

    June 18, 2021 / By Tara Barnes

    The Upper New York (UNY) Conference Board of Trustees presented its 2021 report at the UNY Annual Conference on June 18. President Pastor Richard Barling shared an overview of the board’s work, which includes the purchasing, sales. and maintenance of Conference properties. The Trustees also manage the Conference’s master insurance program. Some of properties under purview of the Trustees are closed churches, episcopal and District parsonages, the Conference …more

    2021 Leadership Report: Working toward a vital future in UNY

    June 17, 2021 / By Shannon Hodson / .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

    What is it going to take to increase the capacity of Christ-following leaders in Upper New York (UNY)? This question was answered in the 2021 Leadership Report. The Rev. Bill Gottschalk-Fielding, Upper New York (UNY) Director of Connectional Ministries and Executive Assistant to the Bishop, introduced the 2021 Leadership Report by acknowledging the leadership that pastors and lay leaders throughout the Conference accomplished in likely the most difficult year that any of …more

    Clergy compensation recommendations supported at Annual Conference

    June 17, 2021 / By Tara Barnes

    The Upper New York Conference Commission on Equitable Compensation exists to help struggling local churches regain sound financial footing to build leadership, make disciples, and transform the world. Chair Paula Kuempel presented the commission’s 2021 report to the 12th annual meeting of the Upper New York Conference on June 17, bringing five recommendations for approval. The commission is responsible for recommending each year the minimum compensation levels for clergy and …more

    Lay Members Gather for First Virtual Laity Session to Celebrate Upper New York Lay Ministries

    June 17, 2021 / By Tara Barnes

    Lay members to the 12th gathering of the Upper New York Annual Conference attended the Conference laity session, held virtually, on June 17, 2021. The time focused on sharing and celebrating the work of laity in the Conference. After a greeting from Upper New York Area Resident Bishop, Mark J. Webb, Conference Lay Leader Drew Griffin welcomed laity and offered an overview for the session, the first time it’s been …more

    2021 Annual Conference Opening Worship-Now is the time to courageously share the gospel

    June 17, 2021 / By Shannon Hodson / .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

    The 2021 Upper New York Annual Conference, held virtually, began with an Opening Worship service on June 17. Through songs, storytelling, reflections, and a message from Upper New York Area Resident Bishop, Mark J. Webb, the truth that the world needs God during these hard times was proclaimed. And the message that now is an opportunity to give people Jesus was established. The theme for the past quadrennium has been “Together …more

    Celebrating Juneteenth in UNY

    June 9, 2021 / By Georgia Whitney, Conference Commission on Religion & Race

    Are you ready to celebrate June 19th: a celebration of Juneteenth, the day in 1865 that all Americans became free from slavery? “But wait!” you say. “Weren't enslaved people freed when Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation two years earlier?” Well, no. In 1863, the Civil War was still going on, and tragically, the state of Texas, like many Southern states, refused to spread the news of …more

    What’s unique about this year’s Annual Conference?

    June 9, 2021 / By The Rev. Bill Gottschalk-Fielding, Assistant to the Bishop and UNY Director of Connectional Ministries

    As is true at every Annual Conference, members will be asked to elect a variety of leaders to new terms of office at this year’s Annual Conference, held virtually, June 17-19. This year, though, there are several unique situations of which we wanted you to be aware. The first deals with the election of equalization members. To comply with our Conference rules, the first action of the Conference …more

    Juneteenth celebrations throughout the years

    June 8, 2021 / By Georgia Whitney, Conference Commission on Religion & Race

    Juneteenth marks our country’s second independence Day. Although it has long been celebrated in the African American community, this monumental event remains largely unknown to most Americans. Combining the words "June" and "nineteenth," it began as a local celebration in Texas and has since evolved into a worldwide celebration of freedom. Also known as "Jubilee Day," "Freedom Day," "Cel-Liberation Day," "Second Independence Day," and "Emancipation Day," Juneteenth is …more

    UNY CONAM 2021 Four Directions Humanitarian Award winners

    June 1, 2021 / By Sharon Schmit, CONAM

    Each year, the UNY Committee on Native American Ministries presents the Four Directions Humanitarian Award to honor one or more individuals for their dedication to native ministries. This year we chose to honor four individuals who have retired from their service after years of tireless effort. Three of these individuals are pastors retiring or leaving from the three Native American churches in the Upper New York (UNY) Conference: David Rood, …more

    UMECM Temperature Check

    June 1, 2021 / By Rhonda Chester, MDIV, United Methodist Ecumenical Chaplain Hendricks Chapel, Syracuse University

    It was an honor to be among the class of 2021 graduates of Syracuse University. Over 6,000 degrees were conferred on this year’s graduates. My feelings were mixed as I prayed for and with, blessed, and congratulated the courageous members of this class. They have persevered through a very difficult final year as the pandemic and other socio-cultural and political fires blazed. I recognized their tears as a symbol of …more



    With more than 134,000 members, the Upper New York Annual (Regional) Conference of The United Methodist Church comprises 865 local churches and 85 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."