Oklahoma Conference of the United Methodist Church



—Vice presidents Maggie Ball, left, and Liz Hedrick help prepare food gifts for 50 needy families in the metro, following the annual "Light the Campus" holiday events Dec. 1 at Oklahoma City University. More than 1,500 toys were collected that night, too. Additional food was donated to Skyline Urban Ministry and the CJAMM Exodus House. More than 100 families also received Christmas gifts through OCU’s Angel Tree program.

3 updates on campus ministry

  • Campus ministry groups from eight states will meet Feb. 18-20 at Cross Point Camp, beside Lake Texoma, for a jurisdictional retreat.

Bishop Robert Hayes Jr. of Oklahoma and Bishop Scott Jones of Kansas will be key presenters. The Wesley Foundation at the University of Oklahoma has hosting duties. For information, contact that campus ministry in Norman.

  • On Jan. 29 in Stillwater, United Methodist Game Day will be hosted by the Wesley Foundations at OU and OSU.

Open to all, the activities begin at 10 a.m. at the OSU Wesley Foundation, 823 W. University. The events include attendance at the OSU-OU women’s basketball game.

Sign up by Jan. 14 at: www.wesleyosu.com  ("Student Registration" and "Special Events"). More information: Rebekah Belase, wesleyosu@gmail.com,  405-372-5830.

  • In Ada, the United Campus Ministry (UCM) at East Central University touched Jesse’s heart last semester. Her story was shared by Leanne Penny, administrative assistant, via e-mail Dec. 10 to the ministry’s board of directors.

"We have a student named Jesse who comes around UCM in the mornings. She never responded to ‘good morning’ but only informed staff when something was lacking or out of stock in our coffee area," Penny wrote.

"We only learned her name this semester. We learned she is a Wiccan who reads tarot cards and has a lot of grudges against the church. This semester she came to one Bible study.

"Then this morning she came in for coffee, and gave me a huge hug and thank-you for just being here this semester. This semester we got to be the place that showed her Jesus is loving and his people can be channels of that love.

"Many things on our goal list didn’t happen this semester, but we focus on what came together. Jesse is one of them."

Grants go to 15 churches

In the Oklahoma City area, 15 United Methodist churches recently received grants to provide meals to home-bound elderly residents.

These churches in Oklahoma County received grants: Chapel Hill, Choctaw, Christ, Leland Clegg, Crown Heights, Douglas Boulevard, Grace, Linwood, May Avenue, Putnam City, Ridgecrest, Southern Hills, St. Luke’s, Village, and Wesley.

The Mobile Meals grants in December ranged from $150 to $1,000, based on the number of meals provided by each site church. The Oklahoma City Community Foundation awarded funds to a total of 62 churches.

COSROW stoles available

For the past two years, the Oklahoma Conference Commission on the Status and Role of Women (COSROW) has presented stoles to newly ordained women at the Annual Conferences.

As a project, COSROW is now making the stoles available to others, after receiving additional requests for the clerical garment. The white satin stole, for Elder or Deacon, is embroidered with the UM Cross and Flame and the COSROW symbol. It is made at Cookson Hills Mission Center.

To order, contact Denise Rowell at Cookson Hills, drowell1212@hotmail.com.  Cost is $25. Specify whether the stole is for Deacon or Elder, and any preferred length.

Tax bill affects clergy calculations

Treasurer Brian Bakeman recently notified all Oklahoma clergy to adjust their financial records after a major tax bill was approved last month in Washington, D.C.

Among the law’s provisions, a Social Security tax cut now affects the payment of Self-Employment Contributions Act (SECA) taxes for clergy in 2011.

"When you complete your new W-4 for 2011, you will need to correct your estimated taxes to reflect the drop from 12.4 percent to 10.4 percent," Rev. Bakeman explained in an e-mail to clergy. It was titled "FW: New Tax Bill Will Impact Nearly Every Nonprofit in the U.S."

For more information, contact the Treasurer’s Office.


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