Iowa-Nigeria Partnership announcement

October 07, 2016

After over 25 years of partnership between Nigerian United Methodists and Iowa United Methodists, the Iowa Conference Board of Global Ministries has decided it is time to step back and evaluate the partnership.  Nigerian United Methodists are planning a Roundtable Conference in 2017 which will include Nigerian United Methodists and United Methodist conferences in the United States that have been working in Nigeria; the planned Roundtable is an opportunity to re-envision the ministry Iowa is doing with our brothers and sisters in Nigeria, with other conference partners also participating in the conversation and discernment process.
            To provide oversight of our conference’s activities in and donations to UMC-Nigeria, the Board of Global Ministries, in consultation with Bishop Laurie Haller, has appointed a small task group that is accountable to and will regularly report to the board.  The task group will have the responsibilities of overseeing the projects currently coming to completion in Nigeria, make recommendations to the Executive Committee over the disbursement of undesignated gifts that have been given for INP's work, be in communication with our contacts at the General Board of Global Ministries and Nigeria as needed, and select the persons who will represent our conference if Bishop Yohanna invites Iowa to be part of the 2017 Roundtable.  If Iowa participates in the Roundtable, any recommendations that come from that meeting will be brought to the Iowa BOGM for discussion and decision-making.
            Iowa has been learning from the General Board of Global Ministries about the “In Mission Together” program, which is intended to build healthy, mutual partnerships for ministry.  The hope is that this model will drive any future mission partnerships that are developed.  For more information, go to this article on the General Board of Global Ministries’ website: In Mission Together Propose New Ways to Partner in Mission - General Board of Global Ministries.
            Your donations for programs such as the Banyam Theological Seminary, Church to Church partnerships, and Village Wells are appreciated.  The money we send to Nigeria is being administered by a General Board of Global Ministries staff member through the Advance office.  The INP kits that you have prepared for Ingathering this year will go to Nigeria, but no kits will be collected for 2017, so the Board of Global Ministries asks that congregations please make UMCOR kits next year instead.  Also, the Artemisia program will be suspended for the present, so donations for this agricultural program will not be accepted after this year’s Ingathering.
            As plans develop, Board of Global Ministries will communicate them through conference channels such as the web site, the Reporter, and district newsletters.
If you have questions, please contact Mary Morris, Chairperson of Iowa Board of Global Ministries, or Karen Dungan, Assistant to the Bishop for Connectional Ministries,