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Health Ministry Resources for Great Plains United Methodist churches

This page contains a collection of resources available to Great Plains United Methodist Churches to support congregational and community health ministries. Check back often for new information.
Use the following quick list to jump to a section below, or scroll down to view all.

Healthy Congregations Logo
Great Plains Health and Wellness Committee Logo

Healthy Congregations Program

The Healthy Congregations program encourages and supports intentional health ministry in Great Plains United Methodist churches and makes training, resources, and financial support available to churches that commit to health ministry programming.

For full details, please visit the Healthy Congregations program page.

HC Learning Community Webinars are offered quarterly for HC team leaders and members. The webinars will contain program news and announcements, presentations on resources and ideas for your health ministry work, and updates from members of participating church teams. We'll periodically announce special HC-only opportunities during these webinars. Miss one or want to catch up on all of them? Recordings of all sessions are available for viewing any time via the above link.

HC core training courses, a core component of the program, are led throughout the year by Judy Johnston, KU School of Medicine, Wichita, and equip teams to organize and carry out effective health ministry programs in their churches and communities. Click here for current schedules and locations.

HC "elective" courses covering various health topics and providing program ideas your church may use. Elective courses contain recorded presentations and links to supplemental materials for teams to view and use at their convenience, anytime. See the "Electives" page for a growing list of topics.

HC Marketing & Communications materials are offered to help teams promote their health ministries and raise awareness of their chosen health issues. Browse and download the electronic files, then customize for your church, or fill out a request for printed materials (subject to availability).

Healthy Congregations Annual RetreatRetreat Logo\

This annual event is held in late April. For full details, please see the Healthy Congregations Retreat page.

Held at Rock Springs 4-H Center in the Kansas' scenic Flint Hills region, the retreat is for Great Plains United Methodists with interests in congregational and community health ministry. The event features a variety of sessions covering the spiritual, mental, physical, and social components of health. The retreat is provided at no charge to participants, and includes face-to-face sessions of the core training courses for the Healthy Congregations program as well as much more. Health professional and clergy CEUs are available.

Health Through Faith and Community study resource

Health Through Faith and Community Curriculum logoThis softbound book of 218 pages is a study resource for Christian faith communities to promote personal and social wellbeing.  The materials explore how Christians as individuals and congregations can build their health and the wellness of their members and related communities.   Designed to be used in Christian study groups such as adult Sunday School classes, Lenten studies or on-going  adult discussion groups, the materials encompass the interactions of faith and physical, mental, spiritual and social health.  The workbook, designed for eight sessions but easily expandable to sixteen, contains hand-outs for use with the group, permitting a single workbook to serve as the resource for the entire group.  Some additional materials related to the study can be found at http://www.healthfaithstudy.info/. Copies of the study can be obtained by United Methodist Churches from the Health Ministry Fund at no cost.

Self-Care for Retired/Retiring ClergyRetiree Self-Care Workshop Logo

Provided through the Health Ministry Fund, Self-Care for Retirees is a single day workshop designed for clergy approaching retirement, clergy in retirement and spouses of such clergy.  It explores the physical, emotional, social and spiritual health opportunities and adjustments for abundant living in the third stage of life.  The workshop has been offered once or twice a year for Great Plains participants from 2014-2016 and is led by Rev. Tom Mattick, author of the workbook for the session.  Check with the Health Ministry Fund or Great Plains Conference for possible 2017 dates.

Health Liaison

Each United Methodist congregation in the Great Plains Conference is encouraged to select a person to serve as health liaison.  The term liaison was selected because much of this person’s role is to be a connector for the local congregation with conference –level resources and opportunities to advance the health of the congregation and the community.  The liaison will receive communications from the Great Plains Health and Wellness Committee which will alert the liaison to resources and offer occasional training.  In the congregation, the health liaison may be the sole congregational member specifically working on health (hopefully you can recruit others) or may be related to the congregation’s existing health ministry team or committee.  In situations where there is no existing healthy ministry team or committee, the liaison will serve as the catalyst for health ministry work.  In situations with an existing health ministry team or committee, the liaison will work with that committee and its leadership to further health ministry.  Subject to assignment of others to these roles by the health ministry team, the liaison will share health resources with the congregation, encourage participation in programs such as the Healthy Congregations Retreat, provide opportunities for others to learn and serve in health ministry and report regularly to the church council and charge conference.  Note:  The position of health liaison is not provided for in The Discipline. 

Clergy Health - Our Ministry Together

This DVD designed for use by Staff/Pastor Parish Relations Committees describes the unique health challenges facing United Methodist clergy in local congregations. Clergy Health - Our Ministry Together LogoIn three short sessions, the series encourages local churches and pastors to engage in a new, shared ministry of health benefitting congregations and clergy through creation of a supportive environment for good health practices.  A specific discussion guide is available in print or at www.healthierclergy.org where other resources can be found.  This DVD is available free of charge to United Methodist Churches in the Great Plains Conference from the Health Ministry Fund. The videos are also available online via the healthierclergy.org website.

Health-Related Bulletin Inserts

The Health and Wellness Committee has developed a series of bulletin inserts that can be used in congregations to encourage members to engage in physical activity and healthy habits. The inserts are available in pdf and word format and cover a variety of health topics. Click here to browse and download the bulletin inserts.

Archived Programs

Clergy Wellness Program

The Health and Wellness Committee provided a clergy wellness program in 2011 and 2012, reaching about 70 clergy.  Clergy Wellness Project logoThe program involved personal health assessments, a two day retreat leading to a health covenant, and follow-up activities.  Additional sessions of this program may be offered in future years.  Watch for announcements from the Committee and the Conference.

Servant Leadership Self-Care workshops

Developed by the Health Ministry Fund, this 6-8 hour workshop provided information and personal decision-making guidance for improvements in health—physical, emotional, spiritual and social.   self care workshop logoA comprehensive workbook was provided to each participant as a continuing resource and as a tool for development of a personal health covenant. 

This workshop is no longer actively scheduled, but if your group has interest, please contact the Health Fund regarding potential availability.

For more details, please see the Self-Care Workshop home page.