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District News

2024 Heritage District Ministry Shares

View the full list >>>

The 2024 Heritage District Ministry share amount for each church on the district is available. Heritage District ministry shares have helped provide grants and financial assistance to several churches in our district.  Churches have been able to improve technology, purchase sound equipment and computers, provide food and school supplies to children, support youth mission work, offer free Lay Servant Ministry courses and much more. We are thankful to the churches for their commitment to make disciples for Jesus Christ.  

Make your payments payable to Heritage District
Mail to: Heritage District Treasurer, 45201 N. Territorial Road, Plymouth, MI, 48170

Financial Assistance, Grants and HD Ministry Shares

2023 HD Ministry Shares >>>

The Heritage District Finance Committee, under the leadership of District Superintendent Rev. LuAnn Rourke, uses district ministry shares to offer financial assistance and grants.  For questions or assistance contact Rick Gorham at [email protected].  Submit completed forms to Rick Gorham via postal mail: Rick Gorham, 13539 S. Rainbow Drive, Gregory, MI  48137, or email [email protected].

Application for Financial Assistance >>>
Application for Connectional Church Grant >>>

Heritage District Youth Ministry Discipleship Grants

The Heritage District is pleased to offer grants for local United Methodist Churches in Michigan in the Heritage District. This grant is intended to provide support to local churches as they re-imagine faith formation with youth. Each church may receive one grant of up to $300. Grants may be used for supplies, curriculum, Lent/Easter/Summer programming, service projects, etc. that support or enhance creative faith formation. Contact Rev. Mary Hagley [email protected] for more information.

These grants are different from the Michigan Conference Discipleship Grants, which are still available here:


Readers to Leaders


At the 2022 Michigan Annual Conference, the body voted overwhelmingly to support the   “Readers to Leaders” fundraising campaign.  That goal was modified to $400,000 to reflect disaffiliation and closures of local churches. The campaign runs from September  10, 2022, to May 1, 2024 and has the goal of raising $400,000. These funds will support two ministries focused on education and we are asking local churches to create their own ministry relationship with a school in their community.

Questions can be directed to campaign co-leaders Lisa Batten, [email protected], and Jon Reynolds, [email protected]

Read more >>>

2023 Charge Conferences

Heritage District Superintendent LuAnn Rourke will be convening the annual fall church conferences as
Charge Conferences. The charge conference is defined in the BOD Paragraph 246.2 -The membership of
the charge conference shall be all members of the church council or appropriate body, together with
retired ordained ministers and retired diaconal ministers who elect to hold their membership in said
charge conference and any others who may be designated in the Discipline.
The Charge conferences will be held both in person and on Zoom. Each congregation has received a date
and start time. The first 30 minutes DS LuAnn will meet with the S/PPRC, and then the next 30 minutes
will be convened as a charge conference. If you operate with a Leadership Team or single board model
and do not have a separate S/PPRC we will cover that part of the business first and then move on to
convening the charge conference.

Submitting Church Conference Forms
Please scan and email all completed/signed charge conference forms as pdf documents at least 1 week
prior to your scheduled meeting to Sarah – scanning forms in bulk is fine, individual forms will be sorted
and saved.

Heritage District 2023 Charge Conference Schedule 
Charge Conference Letter from District Superintendent LuAnn Rourke 
2023 Agenda for Charge Conference 
Questions for S-PPRC and CC Conversation 
Church Conference Forms Checklist

Please contact Sarah in the Heritage District Office with any questions or concerns about anything on
this page.
District Office: 734-663-3939
Email: [email protected]

Update Your Information! Please.

Please be sure to make your local church leadership changes in Brick River, the Michigan Conference official database. Both district and conference staff use Brick River to email important information to your local church leaders.  Need a tutorial how to update Here is the link to the tutorial.

Questions about updating your local church dashboard in Brick River? Please contact Pamela Stewart, Database Manager [email protected].

MI Conference and Heritage District Ministry Shares

Announcing 2023 Ministry Shares >>>

Your Heritage District Ministry shares support two key areas.  The majority goes back to the local churches through grants and support of programs for youth, leadership and lay servant ministries.  The remaining portion funds expenses necessary to maintain essential items in the district:  treasurer, updating e-news and Facebook plus support for other district-wide initiatives.

2022 Heritage District Ministry Shares

Download the PDF >>>

2022 Michigan Conference Ministry Shares

Download the PDF >>>

Standing in Solidarity with Asbury UMC

The  Anti-Bias Anti-Racism Working Group of The Michigan Conference stands in solidarity with Asbury United Methodist Church in Washington, DC, following the vandalism of their “Black Lives Matter” sign.

On December 12, 2020, Asbury United Methodist Church in Washington, DC, had its “Black Lives Matter” sign and display vandalized after a day of demonstrations. This sign was taken from the property of Asbury United Methodist Church. Similar signs were also taken from two other congregations in Washington, DC: Luther Place Lutheran Church and Metropolitan African Methodist Episcopal Church. We lament this horrific assault on the people of Asbury as well as the entire faith community.

Read more >>>

Advent Resources for Churches & Families

Below is a collective list of ideas activities for Heritage District churches/families to celebrate Advent and Christmas

Ideas and Activities

  • Centerpiece or ornament that each person in the congregation receives as a visual connection to the theme for the season (“home for the holidays” “angels among us” “hope is born”)
  • Delivering candy canes with messages of hope/ love/ peace/ joy
  • Decorating the outside of the church instead of the inside
  • “Living Nativity” with different scenes in the driveways of church members – a sort of road rally or scavenger hunt
  • Hand-delivered front porch drop boxes with craft items to assemble, or pre-packaged food items
  • Drive-in Christmas Eve candlelight service (using battery operated candles)
  • Families / individuals video record themselves singing carols and uploaded to Facebook page
  • Send Christmas Cards
  • Use Sermon by Phone app to record sermons or worship services for those who cannot connect online
  • Encourage youth / young adults to host Netflix watch parties
  • Provide open Zoom “coffee hour” or “office hour” for people to drop in and have conversation
  • Prepare devotional guides for use at home or in small groups
  • Purchase Faithful Families for Advent & Christmas by Traci Smith. To purchase use link below:

If purchasing multiple books check bulk discounts available at Chalice Press.


*Suggestions from the Faithful Families Christmas Book

  • November 29 Advent Chain page 8
  • December 6 Jesus’ Family Tree page 47 (cost is $3)

    Luke Genealogy family tree:  pictures-According-to-Matthew-1-4752935?gclid=CjwKCAjwoc_8BRAcEiwAzJevtZ5_SNhNZDLmtWjLxH71lcVn3Fixh1qpRRYGab8uy5jYIcBRk3Fb8hoCxpQQAvD_BwE

Print out and cut up cards.

  • December 13 Homemade Christmas Gifts page 36
  • December 20 Christmas Card Prayers page 26
  • December 21 Longest Night Prayer with Candle page 72
  • December 24 Christmas Eve Candle page 78

Candles available from Dollar Tree:

Use the Michigan Conference Family Friendly Christmas Eve Service

  • December 25 – January 5 12 Days of Family Time page 86

Fill out the 12 Days of Family Connection, let each member of your family choose at least one activity.   Click here


More resources at the Michigan Conference Website


*Resources for Faithful Families Christmas Book gathered by Rev. Mary Hagley

at Dixboro UMC.  If you have questions email at [email protected].

2020 Charge Conferences

All SPRC/Charge Conferences will be held via Zoom.  Zoom links will be emailed to clergy and SPRC Chairpersons a few days prior to your assigned date.  SPRC meeting will begin at the start time listed and charge conference will begin 45 minutes after the start time of the SPRC meeting.  EXAMPLE:  If your assigned start time is 10:00 am, SPRC meets first with the following participants:  DS, Pastor(s)/Deacon(s), SPRC members. 

At 10:45 am, charge conference will convene with the following participants:  DS, Pastor(s)/Deacon(s), leadership team/ad council/governance team.

Forms can be found at this link and can be completed at any time:   Compensation forms are still being finalized but should be available soon.  Please refer to the link above occasionally to retrieve those forms.  All completed forms are due in the drop box (link will be sent at a later date) 10 days prior to your SPRC/CC date.  Completed and signed original documents will be postal mailed to the district office in red and blue folders that I will postal mail to churches in August.

Schedule >>>
Conference forms >>>
District Leadership roster >>> (Excel) / (pdf)
Instructions >>>
Master Checklist >>> (color) / (b&w)

Heritage District