An article at defines Maundy Thursday as “an alternate name for Holy Thursday, the first of the three days of solemn remembrance of the events leading up to and immediately following the crucifixion of Jesus. The English word "Maundy" comes from the Latin mandatum, which means "commandment."

As recorded in John's gospel, on his last night before his betrayal and arrest, Jesus washed the feet of his disciples and then gave them a new commandment to love one another as he had loved them (John 13:34).” This is why church services on this night generally include the washing of feet or other acts of caring as an integral part of celebration.

While John's gospel does not record the institution of the Lord's Supper among the events of this night, the other Gospels do. Many Christians therefore celebrate this night in fellowship at the basin (footwashing) and at the Lord's Table (Holy Communion). 

Clergy leaders of the EPA Conference Latino Commission--the Revs. Lydia Munoz, Brunilda Martinez, Esdras Seda, Irving Cotto, Luky Cotto and Alicia Julia-Stanley--pose with the Rev. Christopher Kurien, Connectional Ministries Director, after a recent meeting.  John Coleman photo

Latino members of the EPA Conference will consider and vote on a proposed new structure and strategy for the Latino Commission when they celebrate their fourth annual Holy Convocation Saturday, April 19, from 9:30 to 3 p.m., at Westchester UMC.  El Buen Samaritano UMC, which has worshiped at Westchester since 1999, will serve as host, led by its pastor, the Rev. Evodia Villalva. Bishop Peggy Johnson will preach at 11 a.m.

Six months after their initial Ember retreat at Pocono Plateau last November (David Pilz photo), the Conference Council on Youth Ministries (CCYM) now invites all youth--grades 6 to 12--to gather again for the Flame/Ablaze Youth Retreat on Saturday, May 3, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. This retreat, at Gretna Glen Camp & Retreat Center, will again explore one's faith journey and relationship with God, and include games, entertainment, recreation, savory meals and a communal fire. Register online now.

EPA Annual Conference American Red Cross Blood Drive
Friday, May 16
11 am – 4 pm 
at the Greater Oaks Expo Center, 100 Station Avenue, Oaks, PA 
Appointments Are Preferred!
For an appointment or information please contact: 1-800-RED CROSS
Or sign up online at: - Enter Sponsor Code: Conference of UMC

monthly finance report

Conference Budget – Schedules A & B

Please reference Schedule A and Schedule B for a summary of the conference budget for March 2014.

As a result of the faithful giving of EPA local churches to the connectional ministries fund or CMF we ended 2013 with a very strong result of $3,279,179.  While this was short of the budget goal of $3.4 million by $120,821 or 3%, it was a reasonable variance.  Given the ongoing struggles of many churches we are pleased and grateful for the commitment made by many to support this vital ministry. 

Through three months of 2014 giving from local churches to CMF was $701,176. This was $148,824 less than budget and $63,307 less than the amount received from March 2013.  CCFA discussed the decrease in revenues and acknowledged that it was a hard winter, the capital campaign and the date of Easter being moved to the second quarter might all have had an impact on revenues.   

The Rev. David Tatgenhorst of St. Luke UMC in Bryn Mawr leads members in celebrating Palm Sunday on the church lawn prior to their procession into the sanctuary singing Hosannas for worship. They celebrated with eco-friendly palms, a growing practice that was featured in the Sunday Philadelphia Inquirer.  John Coleman photo

Four EPA United Methodist pastors were pictured in the Philadelphia Inquirer Sunday, April 13, atop an article that featured their churches’ use of Eco-Palms for Palm Sunday celebrations. The positive publicity resulted from the best of Connectional Communications that linked the United Methodist Committee on Relief with an Inquirer reporter, with the EPA Conference communications office, with district staff and finally with several church pastors who answered an appeal for information.

Church Knows ChurchNASHVILLE, Tenn. April 7, 2014 /GBOD/ The range of emotions Christians experience concerning the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ are dramatically portrayed in a new short film celebrating Easter available from the General Board of Discipleship (GBOD).

Produced by GodFilms, a GBOD ministry, the film Resurrection! allows viewers to look at the death of Christ on the cross through a different lens.

“This film takes us through the emotions of Good Friday, the three days in the tomb and then resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ,” said Steve Horswill-Johnson, executive director of communications at GBOD and senior producer/director of GodFilms. “In a few minutes, it expresses the emotions of the crucifixion in a different way – in a funeral setting.”

2014 annual conference logo











Annual Conference 2014 online registration is open as of March 12.
Conference members, clergy retirees, and guests
What: Preaching, Teaching, Holy Conferencing, Proclaiming the Gospel in Word and Deed
When: May 15-17, 2014 beginning at 10:00 am on Thursday, May 15 with Clergy and Laity Sessions
Where: Greater Philadelphia Expo Center, 100 Station Avenue, Oaks, PA 19456
Why: Growing Vital Congregations (Theme)

Bishop Peggy A. Johnson announces the following 2014 appointments and retirements, effective July 1, 2014, unless otherwise noted:

New appointments announced:

Southwest District

Suffering Servant: Who Has Believed is a new Lenten Bible study developed by the Rev. Steve Morton of Hopewell UMC, Downingtown, Pa.  This dynamic seven-week series is based on the powerful text of Isaiah 53. It is configured to begin the week of Ash Wednesday, March 5, and conclude the week following Easter Sunday. Each 90-minute session consists of a presentation on DVD and a study guide to help participants gain a deep understanding of the scripture by integrating group discussion with personal reflection.  Each session features an Elder from the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference.

Our prayer is that over 1,000 United Methodists will participate in this Lenten Bible study and grow deeper in their faith as they learn more about Jesus Christ.The DVD presentation is available at no cost.  To order your copy or for additional information please contact Deb Boyd at

The Eastern Pennsylvania Conference of The United Methodist Church

Welcome!  The Eastern Pennsylvania Conference of the United Methodist Church is made up of about 465 churches, which serve nearly 125,000 members in 16 counties.   Led by Bishop Peggy A. Johnson, the Conference's mission is to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. Today, this mission is the focus of the conference’s 465 churches, congregations which speak to diverse and multi-generational populations in the many cities, towns, and rural areas throughout our area.  The Eastern Pennsylvania Conference and its sister Peninsula/Delaware Conference together compose the Philadelphia Area, with nearly 1,000 churches served by Bishop Peggy Johnson.

If you are a clergy person or member of one of our 465 churches, we invite you to explore this website for resources and information to support you in your effort to make disciples of Jesus Christ.

If you are looking for a welcoming faith family, we invite you to visit a United Methodist Church in your community:

Eastern Pennsylvania Conference Office: 980 Madison Ave., Norristown, PA 19403; telephone 610-666-9090; fax 610-666-9093.


Read the latest news of the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference.


View photo galleries of Conference events and news stories.


See the latest videos by the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference.


Bishop's Blog

Bishop's Blog

Read thoughts on faith and life from Bishop Peggy Johnson.