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Online Learning

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The Northern Illinois Conference (NIC) staff, with the assistance of the NIC Communications team and the NIC Office of Congregational Development and Redevelopment, are producing online learning sessions via Zoom on Thursdays at either 10 am or 1 pm with practical information on how to do a variety of ministries during the COVID-19 outbreak. To join the meeting, you'll need to download the Zoom app. Click here for a tutorial on how to join.

Upcoming Online-Learning Webinars include:

  • Systemic Racism & Discrimination during COVID-19 - May 21 at 1pm presented by the General Board of Church and Society, part of a series of webinars titled "Pre-existing Disparities Exposed." Click for more information and to register.

Archived Trainings:


  • Leading Beyond the COVID-19 Pandemic - with Rev. Adam Hamilton. As we think about how we will eventually reopen our church buildings and prepare to reconnect with our church communities, Rev. Adam Hamilton, Senior Pastor at the United Methodist Church of the Resurrection in Leawood, KS, guided us in a discussion on best ways to move forward. ►Watch recording Download PowerPoint slides
  • Local Church Strategies for Surviving COVID-19 Pandemic - Rev. Olu Brown from Impact UMC in Atlanta, GA shares ideas for Easter Sunday online services and reaching people during this pandemic. ►Click here to watch. To download the outline, click here.
  • The Impact of COVID-19 in Communities of Chicago - May 14 at 1 pm with Bishop Sally Dyck and Dr. LaMenta "Sweetie" Conway, Deputy Chief of Medicine for the Illinois Department of Health. They will discuss Dr. Sweetie's experience and insights on how Christians can live out our love of neighbor during these difficult times when healthcare access is unequal and front-line workers are vulnerable. ►Watch recording


  • Ways to Worship Online: Urban Village Church (UVC) in Chicago shares how they use Livestreaming, Facebook Live, YouTube and other creative uses of technology to continue communicating with their faith communities. ►Watch the recorded meeting.
  • Online Worship Content: Rev. Dawn Chesser, an ordained NIC elder who transferred to the Holston Conference and former Director of Preaching Ministries at the UM General Board of Discipleship. She also holds a Ph.D. in liturgical studies with a dissertation on online worship. Chesser will be joined by Rev. Taylor Burton-Edwards, a consultant for InfoServ/Ask The UMC with United Methodist Communications. They will discuss best practices for online worship content and copyright guidelines. ►Watch the recorded meeting.


  • Virtual Gathering Training - Rich Havard, Pastor and Executive Director of the Inclusive Collective, one of our NIC campus ministry partners. Anxiety is on the rise. Isolation is rampant. Sometimes, even our prayers can seem empty. In the midst of this pandemic and its ramifications, how do we gather virtually in ways that nurture relationships, connect us to God, and make us come alive (or at least stay sane!)? There are a lot of great resources out there on how to lead worship services, but our people also need more intimate community during these hard days. Join Rich Havard to learn some strategies and tips for leading your virtual small group gatherings during COVID-19. If you missed this one but want to be contacted about future events, email Rich ( Download PowerPoint slides. 


  • Finance Helps in the Midst of this Crisis  -  with Ken Sloane,  Director of Stewardship & Connectional Ministries at Discipleship Ministries. Watch Recording
  • Online giving and promoting generosity: NIC Treasurer Lonnie Chafin, Apportionments Administrator David Quinn, and Generosity Group Consultant Harry Nicol share recommendations for electronic giving services and how to encourage online giving. ►Click here to watch.


  • Digging Deeper in Intentional Discipleship Preview - with Ken Sloane and M. Scott Hughes. Learn more about intentional discipleship making in your ministry setting. ►Watch Recording
  • "How is it with Your Soul?" A panel of pastors and clinicians help us identify signs of anxiety and depression, ways to release and renew, as well as other self-care practices and how we find God in the midst of this COVID-19 crisis. Panelists include Deacon Anne Hampson, Rev. Cheryl Magrini, Rosecrance Chaplain Rev. Bill Lenters, and Rev. Claude King. ►Watch Recording Download resources shared by Rev. Anne Hampson here.

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