Some pastors have reported that their congregants have recently received spam emails and texts. Scammers are claiming to be INUMC clergy and are reaching out to laity to solicit gift cards, checks, and other forms of payment.

The scammers are creating email addresses with pastors’ names in them, which may mimic the email addresses that clergy use to stay in contact with their congregations.

Be on the lookout for suspicious messages from people claiming to be your pastor, district superintendent, or Bishop Julius Trimble.

The Indiana Conference will never solicit personal payment through text messages, emails, or other forms of digital communication. If you or someone you know receives a suspicious message asking for money, please forward your message to

Jason Fishburn, Relationship Manager for the United Methodist Financial Credit Union (UMFCI) will be hosting seminars about preventing identity theft in churches around the Conference in upcoming weeks. To register for a seminar or to host one at your location, contact Jason at

Read: Protect Members (and Ministries) from Costly Identity Theft