Oklahoma Conference of the United Methodist Church

OKUMC Update


CCLI/CVLI may be removed from AC budget

The Oklahoma Conference has announced the possibility of CCLI/CVLI licensing coverage being removed from the 2021 Annual Conference Budget.

Since 2016 the conference has covered the cost of the basic CCLI/CVLI licensing process for all local United Methodist Churches through blanket coverage funded through an apportionment. The Conference Communications Ministry oversees the copyright licensing of all our conference churches for the use of downloading music, reproducing song sheets, projecting lyrics on a screen and showing movies for worship services, daycare centers, and after school programs through two companies: Church Copyright License International (CCLI) and Church Video License International (CVLI). The CCLI/CVLI license allows the church to produce and play copyrighted music and video in local churches and related day care ministries (live streaming and Song Select require an additional license that the local church must purchase individually).

By having conference-wide coverage, our churches pay 33% less for coverage than if they were to obtain these licenses individually. Because the group rate provides such a significant discount, local churches are able to drop their individual coverages.

However, in recent years as apportionment payout has dropped, a number of churches are receiving the benefit of CCLI/CVLI coverage without paying the apportionment line item. The inequity created from this situation is no longer tenable.

A recommendation will be made to the 2021 budget of the conference to eliminate this line item in the apportionment allocations. If the budget is approved without this line item included, churches will need to have their own coverage starting January 1, 2021. This memo is to alert churches to this potential action so that they have time to plan for individual coverage before January 2021.

If you have questions, please direct them to Communications Specialist Tabitha Beckman (tbeckman@okumc.org) in the Communications Ministry office.

Below you will see the links to the CCLI/CVLI and One License (offers bundle pricing including live stream) web pages that will provide additional information on how to proceed in securing the licenses. Thank you for your attention in this matter.

Technology grants offered for rural and small membership churches

At its quarterly meeting, the Commission on the Rural and Small Membership Church voted to give its entire budget of $8,000 to churches with fewer than 100 members that need to make technology upgrades or purchases to continue to offer worship as the pandemic continues.

Applications are open and grants will be awarded in September. A church can be eligible for $500 if they aren’t putting any money into the project, but if they are putting in some dollars, the grant can increase to $750. It’s a small offer, but hopefully helpful. The application is ready and available at okumc-reg.brtapp.com/SmallChurchTechnologyGrantApplication.

This is the second time in as many years that the Commission has sent nearly all of its budget back to churches. In 2019, they gave grants to churches who came to our regional planning workshops and then envisioned new ministries from those events.

Orders meeting on Sept. 22

The Orders Meeting for clergy will be held on Sept. 22 via Zoom. Registration is required at www.okumc.org/orders2020.

Worship will be livestreamed at 11 a.m., and an afternoon breakout session will be held at 1 p.m. There will be a break for lunch in between. Zoom links for both worship and the breakout session will be sent through online registration closer to the date of the event.

Before the meeting, clergy are asked to watch “Feeling like you didn’t sign up for this, and other pastoral realities of 2020,” an online panel produced by the Global Board of Higher Education and Ministry. The panel was moderated by GBHEM’s Rev. Shannon Conklin-Miller and features Bishop Grant Hagiya of the California-Pacific Annual Conference and Bishop Ken Carter of the Florida Annual Conference. The bishops draw from personal experience, both mistakes and successes, to discuss a variety of topics, including:

  • What congregants need to see from leaders during times of crisis
  • How all clergy can support communities of color
  • Why social justice and active anti-racism must be a part of any ministry
  • How to be a non-anxious presence in an anxious world
  • The importance of rest and self-care for effective leaders

The afternoon session will consist of small group breakout discussions. Participants for each group will be randomly selected, and there will be no designated facilitators. Instead, clergy are asked to prepare for the discussion time on their own by watching the panel. There will be no set end time for discussions. During the breakout discussions, clergy are encouraged to ask questions such as:

  • How has/is your church bringing effective discipleship within the pandemic?
  • What does it look like to disagree and discuss current issues within your congregation?
  • How can you be the hands and feet of Christ while still being socially aware of others vulnerabilities?
  • What does the church need to do in order to be present within your immediate community?
  • How can your group be in prayer for you?

Participants may choose to ask additional or different questions during their discussion time. Once the group is finished with the discussion time, they can leave the breakout session by ending the Zoom call.

Clergy are asked to send any questions to Rev. Nancy Johnson at njohnson@okumc.org or to call 405-530-2007.

$10,000 raised for elder’s funeral expenses

The appeal to help with the final expenses for retired colleague, Rev. Barbara Brown, netted a total of $10,000. These funds came from individuals, churches, and a couple of special funds, including the Clergy Crisis Fund. Rev. Brown passed away without any insurance or money to have a proper burial. With the donations, the full costs of Rev. Brown’s services were covered, according to Terry Koehn, the Green Country District Superintendent. We are humbled and grateful for the response to this appeal.


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