Greetings to all members and friends of Velda Rose United Methodist Church!
To say that we are living in an unprecedented period is more than an understatement. We are encountering a time that is challenging us to make hard decisions that we have never had to make before.

The worst thing that we can do is to make no decisions at all, or make decisions
that are so arbitrary that they become meaningless. The leadership at Velda Rose has listened carefully to local, state, and national updates and recommendations regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. We have also received advice from you, our parishioners, and have consulted with our District Superintendent and other conference leaders.

Churches may respond in various ways, but in light of the fact that we serve the
most vulnerable population group to the coronavirus, those above sixty-five years
of age, and host relatively large worship services and congregational events, we
have made the following decisions.

  1. All activities and events on the campus of Velda Rose UMC will be
    cancelled until further notice.
  2. This closure includes weekly worship, Bible studies, circle meetings, choral
    and bell practices, committee meetings, and rummage activities.
  3. This closure also applies to all other outside groups or community activities
    that use our facilities.
  4. We ask that, if you have attended any event or activity at Velda Rose UMC
    and have tested positive for the coronavirus, that you notify one of your
    pastors or the office as soon as possible. All information will be held in
    strictest confidence.

We realize that this decision will be challenging in many ways. Nonetheless, your
pastors will continue to reach out in ministry through a weekly livestream service on Sunday mornings at 9:30 a.m., accessible on the Velda Rose website (, or on Facebook. We are also planning to do a midweek devotional outreach, whose final form and delivery is yet to be established.

Your pastors will be available by email and by telephone. The front office will be closed, but all staff, including pastors, will be on site daily during normal office hours. We will take messages and respond to pastoral concerns and issues.

In this time of self-imposed social distancing, your pastors and staff will continue
to prepare and plan for Palm Sunday, Holy Week, and Easter Sunday, as well as
the months ahead. In the event that special days and events need to be cancelled,
we will do our best to bring them to you through other forms of communication.

Finally, we thank you for your faithfulness. You are a wonderfully devoted and loyal congregation, and your sustained giving is crucial during this time. The church will maintain all financial obligations regarding personnel and building expenses during the closure.
Please remember that you can bring your tithes and contributions to the office, mail them to the church, or give electronically. If needed, our office staff is available to provide assistance with electronic giving.

Above all else, remember that no matter where or how we meet, in good times or in difficult times, that we are the church. Christ is our Great Shepherd and He will continue to lead us as we move into the future.

May God’s richest blessing be upon each and every one of you in the days ahead.

New Director of Bells & Voice

A Big Welcome to our New Bellmaster and Choral Director

We are excited to welcome to Velda Rose United Methodist Church

our new Bellmaster and Choral Director, Douglas J. Benton.

Doug comes to us with a rich and diversified experience. He studied Organ
Performance at both Arizona State University and Northern Arizona
University, where he graduated Cum Laude in 1992 with a Bachelor of
Arts in Organ Performance.

Doug has spent over fifty years as a professional church musician in
the Phoenix area. He has served on State, Area and National Boards of
the Handbell Musicians of America (formerly American Guild of English
Handbell Ringers), including Chair of the Education Department, and is a
frequent contributor for Overtones, including the first major research on
Carpel Tunnel Syndrome and Handbell Ringing. He has also directed
massed choirs at National, Area, State and Local Festivals, and has been
a clinician at international, national, area, and state events.

Doug has served on the board of the Central Arizona Chapter of the
American Guild of Organists, and is currently the Chair of Repertoire and
Resources for Music in Worship for the Arizona Chapter of the American
Choral Directors Association.

He is an ASCP award winning composer/arranger of music for brass,
choir, handbells, orchestra, and organ. Most recently, until his retirement,
Doug was the full time Director of Music Ministries for Gold Canyon
United Methodist Church in Gold Canyon, Arizona. There he
administered a large choral program and directed an orchestra and
handbells. He also managed a ten-event Performing Arts Series annually
for the church, and hosted the Canyon Sounds Series for the Gold
Canyon Arts Council.

Doug brings to his ministry at Velda Rose unique gifts and graces. We
eagerly embrace him as he joins the Velda Rose family!