Category Archives: events

Stranger in A Strange Land – Even at Home

Join us for our fall event on Saturday, October 21, at Bend United Methodist Church. This event will give us a theological grounding for why we do the work we do in social justice; take us beyond feeling like we are the only one and connect us with others who are doing the same kinds of work; and teach us the most helpful ways to have conversations with others, including our legislators.

This one-day event will take place at Bend UMC on October 21 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Cost is $20 for the event, which includes lunch. Register now by e-mailing your contact information to Louise Kienzle at You can pay your $20 at the door on October 21.

The details are on this flyer. You can register now, then print an extra copy to post at your church or give to a friend.

Bend is a long way for a day trip for many people in our conference. We are working on inexpensive housing options if you would like to stay the night before or the night after the event. Information will be available about this when you register.

Rev Alex Awad speaking in Portland

“Ten things Christians Can Do to Help Contribute to Peace and Justice for Israelis and Palestinians” will be the topic of a talk by retired UM Missionary Rev. Alex Awad at First United Methodist Church, Portland, at 12 noon Sunday, July 23.   Rev. Awad, a retired GBGM missionary who served as Dean of Bethlehem Bible College for more than 30 years, became a refugee when his family was evicted from the Jerusalem home that had been theirs for generations in the 1948 “Nakba.”  He lost his Palestinian citizenship Continue reading

Rise Up! February 17 – 20 in Portland


Don’t miss an exciting weekend with fellow justice seekers. This invitation letter will give more details on the conference. The date is approaching fast. The deadline for the lowest registration fee is January 17.

Our keynote speaker Friday night will be Bishop Karen Oliveto. Her preaching is guaranteed to inspire and motivate you. On Saturday, workshop leader, Beth Zemsky,  will lead us in learning to develop an intersectional movement to help bring justice for all. On Sunday and Monday, you will have an opportunity to become part of an action network of people across the Western Jurisdiction to plan and carry out action in at least one specific area.

One of the goals of this conference is to involve more young people and people of color. If you know someone who should be involved in this work for justice, share this information and urge them to attend. Scholarships are available, but the deadline for those applications is even sooner: January 12. Don’t wait!

See you in Portland!

Concerned about homelessness?

In places large and small across Oregon and Idaho, homelessness is increasing. Why is this happening? What can we do about it? Join us on October 15 at the Tigard United Methodist Church for our fall event: “Homelessness: Relationships and Responses”. Download this flyer for all the details and a registration form. Mail the registration form with your check made out to “MFSA”. Or you can contact registrar Janine Delauney at

The keynote speakers for the morning session will be Paul Schroeder and Rob Justus, both active in the Portland area. In the afternoon there will be a choice of workshops with presenters from cities and churches of varying sizes with different approaches to making a difference.


Paul Schroeder (MDiv) is the founder and executive director of New City Initiative (, a nonprofit whose purpose is that all people should achieve their full human potential, and whose mission is to engage faith communities in ending the cycle of homelessness. A former Greek Orthodox priest, Paul was inspired by his experience with the CUSINA program, which offered Greek cooking classes for people transitioning out of homelessness, to create a network of congregations supporting people’s efforts to end their homelessness. In 2010, Paul started New City Initiative as a project at JOIN, a local homelessness services nonprofit. New City Initiative became its own nonprofit in 2012. He is the author and translator of On Social Justice: St Basil the Great, a collection of homilies by Basil of Caesarea, a 4th-century Christian figure who founded a center called the “new city” that was dedicated to healing the whole person. He is also the creator of Building the New City, an interfaith curriculum on homelessness that has been used by dozens of congregations in the Portland area. In 2012, Paul received the Lamplighter Award from Operation Nightwatch for his organizing work in the faith community around family homelessness. In 2015, he received the Lowenstein Trust Award at Portland City Hall, which is awarded each year to “that person who demonstrated (in the opinion of the Trustees) the greatest contribution to assisting the poor and underprivileged in the city of Portland, Oregon.”

Rob Justus founded JOIN in 1992, an organization to support the efforts of homeless individuals and families to transition out of homelessness into permanent housing. JOIN focused on individuals sleeping outside in the Portland Metro area and launched “housing first” as a model for helping transition people into housing. Rob has a long history working with nonprofits and church communities around the issues of homeless and housing. In addition to work on housing, Rob has worked with CASH Oregon creating innovative approaches to increase income for low income Oregonians.


Let’s All Go to San Antonio!



Texas in August may not sound attractive to us in the Northwest, but this event will be worth the trip! Gather at the River is a joint event of MFSA and Reconciling Ministries Network. It will take place at Travis Park UMC in San Antonio August 6 through 9, and it will bring together United Methodists from all the world for worship, Bible study, and inspiration for our journey as we move toward General Conference 2016. Registration is now open, and the early registration deadline is coming soon. Scholarships are available. Get all the details and register at

Spring event “Oregon-Idaho Hosts the World”

Join us at Fremont UMC in Portland on Saturday, March 21 to learn more about what it means to have General Conference in Oregon next year. Learn about the conference as a whole and about how justice seekers are uniting to make a strong witness for justice to our entire denomination. Lots of volunteers will be needed next year, and this is a good way to find out how your skills and interests might best be used. Get all the details on this flyer. Print a copy to post at church and another copy to give to a friend. We hope to see you there!

Labor Day weekend at Lake Tahoe


Join with justice seekers from all over the Western Jurisdiction and beyond for a retreat at beautiful Lake Tahoe this summer. Called “Stepping Out in Faith”, the retreat will be a time for worship, learning, planning, and FUN. Bring the whole family; there will be lots of time for play and casual conversation.

Download this flyer: SteppingOut_SaveTheDateFlyer and find out more at the Western Methodist Justice Movement website at Registration will be open in the next week or two, so get the information and start planning now.

MFSA Spring Event: Finding Justice in the Holy Land and at Home

mbMark Braverman will be the keynote speaker at this year’s MFSA Spring Event: “Finding Justice in the Holy Land and at Home” on March 22nd.  Mark is a Jewish American author and speaker on faith issues related to peace in Israel and Palestine. He has been closely involved in the international church movement to support Palestinian rights. He spoke at the launch of the Palestine Kairos document “Moment of Truth” in Bethlehem in 2009 and has taught on kairos consciousness in the U.S., the UK, Germany, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, South Korea, Lebanon, and Palestine. Mark has worked with Presbyterian, Episcopal, and evangelical groups as well as MFSA in promoting peace. He has served on the Advisory Board of Friends of Sabeel North America and Friends of Tent Nations North America. Mark is National Program Director for Kairos USA, a movement to unify and mobilize American Christians to take a prophetic stance for a just peace in the Israel and Palestine. Mark has authored multiple books on Israel-Palestinian issues, loves Bible study and preaching, and lives with his wife Susan in Portland, Oregon near some of their grandchildren. Check out his website at

Learn more about the event here. Invite someone to come with you! Download a flyer to forward or print: Spring Event flyer 2014

Register for the event:

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Learn more about the event here.