The Pensacola District of The United Methodist Church
Monday, July 28, 2014
Here for You - Serving Jesus
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Happy July birthday to Jo Spivey, Lisa Ausley, George McClure, Levi Gardner, Sterling Boykin, Rurel Ausley, Ed Chandler,
Barry Carpenter, Riley Richardson, Johnny Johnson Jr., Charles Walker, Scott Grantland, Jeff Burnett, and Bill Bruner!   
 
The deadline to order the AWFC Directory & Journal is Thursday, July 31!
 
Sign Up Today!
The Pensacola District is offering a 6-week DVD-based study of The Daniel Plan
Tuesdays, August 5 thru September 16 (no session 9/2/214) at the District Office.
 
Click on the news item for the article.  Scroll down the page for more!
 

        
Around the Pensacola District  
 
 
The Daniel Plan: 40 Days to a Healthier Life
The Pensacola District is offering to clergy a 6-week, DVD-based study of The Daniel Plan on Tuesdays, August 5-September 16 (no class 9/2/14) at the Pensacola District Office. Registration is limited to the first 16. Registration is not confirmed until receipt of the registration fee of $50. The registration fee includes a healthy lunch each week. Participants will need to purchase the book (not the workbook) The Daniel Plan: 40 Days to a Healthier Life and read chapters 1-3 before the first session on August 5. Click on the flyer (right) for more information.
 
Thank You for Your Support!
Thank you to the following Pensacola District Churches who have already paid 100% of their District Administration Fund apportionment for 2014:  Allen Memorial, Bagdad, Baker, Century, Christ, Chumuckla Community, Clear Springs, Crestview First, Ensley, Gulf Breeze, Jay, Lathram Chapel, Mae Edwards, Mary Esther, McDavid, New Hope, Pensacola First, Pineview, Shalimar (108.33%), St. Mark-Pensacola (100.11%), St. Paul-Gulf Breeze, Warrington, and Wesley Memorial!!  Thank you to Clear Springs and New Hope, who have paid 100% of all their AWF Conference apportionments for 2014!!
 
Regional Operation Christmas Child "Full Circle Event"
August 3, 2014, 3 p.m.
at Gulf Breeze United Methodist Church, 75 Fairpoint Drive, Gulf Breeze, FL 32563 (850-932-3594)

Gulf Breeze UMC is hosting the regional Operation Christmas Child "Full Circle Event" on August the 3rd at 3:00 p.m., and all district pastors, lay leaders, and congregants are cordially invited. This is an opportunity to learn more about the Operation Christmas Child shoe box ministry and meet a young man who survived the Rwandan genocide.  He has an amazing story that truly inspires everyone. Click here for the flyer ...  here for postcards. ... here to read about Alex Nsengimana.
 
Below is the full schedule of Operation Christmas Child regional events in August as shown on the flyer:
 
Saturday, August 2, 9:00 a.m.
Pastor/Leadership Breakfast (RSVP to Bethany or Sharon by July 25th)
at Olive Baptist Church, 1636 E. Olive Road, Pensacola, FL  (850-476-1932)
 
Saturday, August 2, 11 a.m.-Noon
Meet & Greet
at Lifeway Christian Store, 1654 Airport Boulevard, Pensacola, FL
 
Saturday, August 2, 6:00 p.m.
Project Leaders Event
at Pine Terrace Baptist Church, 6212 Pine Blossom Road, Milton, FL (850-623-3954)
 
Sunday, August 3, 3:00 p.m.
Celebration Event
at Gulf Breeze United Methodist Church, 75 Fairpoint Drive, Gulf Breeze 32563 (850-932-3594)
 
For more information call Bethany at (850) 368-4416 or Sharon at (850) 516-8135.
 
Acts 2 Thrift Store
Click here for the flyer, from Pensacola United Methodist Community Ministries.
 
District Committee on Ministry
The Pensacola District Committee on Ministry will meet August 19, 9 a.m., at Gadsden Street United Methodist Church (second floor conference room).
 
Lay Servant Ministry Training in September at Shalimar
Pensacola District Lay Servant Ministries is offering Lay Servant Ministry Training two consecutive Saturdays in September. The training will be held September 6 & 13, 2014, 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., at the Family Life Center of Shalimar United Methodist Church, 1 Old Ferry Road, Shalimar, FL 32579. Registration deadline is August 25.  Click here for the event page, here for the registration flyer.  
 
Save the Date!  Benefit Golf Tournament for Wesley Fellowship UWF/PSC
Save the date October 10, 2014,  for the Benefit Golf Tournament for the United Methodist Campus Ministry of the University of West Florida and Pensacola State College. The tournament will be October 10 (Friday), 2014, at Scenic Hills Country Club at UWF. The schedule is registration at 11 a.m., lunch at noon, and tee-off at 1 p.m. For more information and to sign up call Stuart at 850-723-4716.
 
From Scenic Hills Website (edited):  "Scenic Hills Country Club at the University of West Florida in Pensacola is not your average Florida golf course. They are known for their rolling hills, stately pines lining the fairways, elevation changes and striking views that are unusual for a Florida golf course. The Pensacola golf course boasts the best greens and golf course conditions in the Panhandle." 
 
Save the Date - Low Country Boil
September 9, 2014 - Low Country Boil at Christ United Methodist Church, Milton, for men of Milton/Jay/Pace Area churches .

     

 
Local Church Positions Available within the Pensacola District:
Director of Children’s After School Program - Chumuckla, Florida
for Chumuckla Community Church, UMC
This position directs all aspects of the daily “KidsZone” after-school program including the following:
* Daily After School Program activities inside and outdoors
* Tutoring and help with homework
* Snack preparation
* Volunteer coordination
* Billing and cash management
This is a part-time position with hours daily from 1:00 until 6:00 p.m. Salary is hourly and negotiable based on experience. Minimum requirement, 2 to 4 years working with children and related education helpful.

Contact Pastor Tom Sharron at 850-994-4444 (office) or 850-723-9430 (cell) or thsharron@gmail.com.
 
Part-time Youth Director Needed - Milton, Florida
Do you have a growing relationship with Jesus Christ and a passion for touching the lives of youth?  Christ United Methodist Church is looking for someone with your passion to develop a discipleship program and work with the youth in the Church.  A part-time Youth Director position will be available August 1, 2014. For more information call the church office at 850-623-8820 (summer hours vary). The application will be available soon at their website, http://ChristUMCMilton.com. Update: Here are links from the Christ UMC website:  Job Description- Youth Director (PDF)  /  Youth Director Application (DOCX)Youth Director Application (PDF)

Daytime Maintenance Custodian - Cantonment, Florida
The Custodian position has been filled.
 
Full-time Director of Youth Ministries - Pensacola, Florida
St. Luke United Methodist Church in Pensacola is seeking a full-time Director of Youth Ministries. If interested please call the church office at 850-477-3145.  Below are qualifications and responsibilities with the position.  St. Luke UMC is located at 1394 East Nine Mile Road, Pensacola, FL 32514.
 
Qualifications/Work:

Individual must be of good moral character, trustworthy in all respects and able to relate positively with people.  The Director of Youth Ministries should have a degree in a field related to youth and/or education or at least three (3) years experience running a successful youth ministry.  The Director of Youth Ministries shall have good administrative skills and the ability to communicate and relate well with youth, parents, and other staff members.  The Director of Youth Ministries must also be able to coordinate volunteer services.  The Director of Youth Ministries is to develop a balanced youth program for youth entering 6th grade through high school senior.  The program should be comprised of meaningful learning opportunities and activities that will enable the youth to develop in the Christian faith and promote Christian fellowship.

The Director of Youth Ministries shall seek to respond to the young person as a whole.  He/She shall provide a ministry that is filled with acceptance, understanding, and affirmation in an atmosphere of belonging.

Responsibilities:
  1. The Director of Youth Ministries shall be responsible for designing programs and activities that will enhance the spiritual development of the youth.  This will include prayer groups, Bible studies, retreats, youth weeks, Wednesday evening, Sunday morning, and evening programs, etc.  The Director of Youth Ministries is responsible for  the implementation and the coordination of the tasks and personnel required for these programs and activities.
  2. Maintain close communication with the Senior Minister regarding all aspects of the youth ministry.
  3. Develop programs for UMYF and Wednesday evening.  Recruit volunteers and obtain necessary materials to implement said programs.
  4. Offer service opportunities throughout the year to involve young adults in missions, community service, work camping experiences, VBS, etc.
  5. Contact new members and visitors with youth to inform them of the programs and ministries we have to offer youth and to give them an opportunity to ask questions and/or voice concerns.
  6. Meet with parents of youth as needed (at least quarterly) to ensure communication and cooperation of adults/parents in youth programs.
  7. Seek to promote and maintain cooperation between the youth ministry and the total ministry of the church.
  8. Recruit, train, encourage, and support adults in various volunteer ministries of working with youth in our congregation such as chaperons, resource persons, etc.
  9. Attend and encourage the youth to attend Sunday morning worship service(s).
  10. Attend worship services when not conducting youth programs/services.
  11. Attend and encourage the youth to participate in the church-wide programs of the church.
  12. Plan an annual Youth Sunday each year.
  13. Present updated reports on youth ministry at Administrative Board meetings.
  14. Provide timely articles for the Sunday bulletin and church newsletter.
  15. Prepare annual budget for submission to the Finance Committee and operate youth program within the amount of budget authorized.
  16. Visit young people and parents in special needs situations such as hospitalization, crisis intervention, death and other situation in which teenagers may need support and assistance.
  17. Work alongside and with the Sunday School Superintendent.  Assist in recruiting and supporting youth Sunday school teachers.
  18. Provide assistance to the Senior Pastor as may be called upon from time to time to provide assistance as it pertains to youth programs.
  19. Conduct a yearly confirmation class.
  20. Perform other duties as assigned by the Senior Minister.
  21. Submit for vacation and other time off as required by established policy.
For more information about St. Luke UMC visit http://awfumc.org/churches/detail/23105. (Posted 6/17/2014)
 
Cokesbury Cares Program
Our new contact person for the Cokesbury Cares program (disaster recovery for churches) is Paula Lunn.  She can be reached at plunn@umpublishing.org or 615-749-6639. 
 
Quarterly District Event:  Moveable Feast
Please share this information with other members of your congregation. 

 

Calendar for the Series:
Saturday, January 11, 2014

9 a.m.-noon at Aldersgate United Methodist Church, Molino           

"Wesleyan Spirituality and Means of Grace"

           

Saturday, May 10, 2014  - The May 10th event has been CANCELED

9 a.m.-noon at Summit Campus (McClain Hall) of Cokesbury United Methodist Church, Pensacola 

"Prayer"

 

Sunday, July 20, 2014 - The July 20th event has been CANCELED

3 p.m.-6 p.m. at Mt. Carmel United Methodist Church, Jay 

"Sacraments"

 

Saturday, November 8, 2014

9 a.m.-noon at Trinity United Methodist Church, Fort Walton

"Proclamation"

 

Contact for information:

Dr. Mary Ann Gantt, Pastor for Christian Education

mgantt@pensacolafirstchurch.com 

251-644-2915 

 


 
Administrative Announcements
 
 
Is Your Church's Listing at UMC.org Up to Date?
Did you know that each United Methodist local church has its own page at UMC.org in the international Find-a-Church directory? Click here to find and update your church's Find-A-Church page.
 
New Worship Service Times? New Church E-mail Address or Website?
Pastors/Secretaries, if your church's worship and Sunday School times have changed, please log-in and update the Local Church information. Your District Superintendent visits churches, and your Church Locator Page will need to show the correct information. This is a reminder, also, to please keep the information correct on what your church's e-mail address and website are. Thank you!
 
 
Imagine No Malaria
If you still have Imagine No Malaria funds to donate, you can send your check to the AWFC Fiscal Office, 4719 Woodmere Boulevard, Montgomery, AL 36106. Please make the check payable to the Alabama-West Florida Conference and mark "Imagine No Malaria" on the check memo line.
 
A Reminder to Local Church Finance Persons to Make Provision for Annual Audit
Each year, the Report of the Committee on Finance to the annual charge conference includes the question, "Have the financial records of the church and all its organizations been audited for the prior fiscal year?" Although the annual audit report does not need to be included with the other charge conference forms, it is required by the Discipline to be completed after the end of the year. Guidelines for handling of an accountability of funds can be found in the 2013-2016 United Methodist Church Financial Records Handbook and in Guidelines For Leading Your Congregation: FINANCE, available at www.cokesbury.com, and The Local Church Audit Guide, available at www.gcfa.orgClick here for the Fund Balance Report 2013-2016. 
 
Recommended Minimum Salary
According to the 2014 Brochure of Reports, page 117, the recommended minimum salary for 2015 for all full-time appointed clergy is $35,000.
 
 New Clergy Appointment?
If you had  change a in clergy appointment, see instructions at http://UMCPensacolaDistrict.org/RightStart. Please make note of district events on your calendar.  You'll be meeting with your church, planning ministry and setting calendar dates, and you'll want to already have district events on the calendar.
* 2014 District Clergy Christmas Dinner Dec. 2, 6 p.m., at Soundside <-- Please put on your calendar
* 2014 District Conference Nov. 2, 4 p.m., at Navarre UMC, concurrent with 2014 District Youth FUSED Conference Nov. 2, 4 p.m., at Soundside. Churches are requested to suspend other Nov. 2  afternoon activities so that all may attend.
                        

 
Around the Conference   
 
 
Personal Papers Preserved by the AWFC Methodist Archives Center
The Alabama-West Florida Conference Archives Center preserves the personal papers of its clergy. When a person dies, they receive information from the conference secretary and district superintendents. They also solicit personal papers from family members.  Below is a list of the kinds of records that provide documentation of a person's life. If a family wishes to keep the original copies, they gladly accept photocopies. Each person's papers are preserved for posterity in his/her folder in the reference files in the Archives Center vault.
Awards Geneological forms
Biographical sketches Memoirs and obituaries
Certificates of birth, marriage, and death Music compositions
Clippings from newspapers Sermons, lectures
Correspondence about events and issues Writings (articles, books, poems, stories, historical sketches, etc.
Diplomas and educational documents Date books and diaries
 
For more information contact Sharon Tucker, Archivist, at (334) 833-4413 or archives@huntingdon.edu.       
 
Open Doors Resale Store – Store Manager Position
The Open Doors Resale and Thrift Store, a community support ministry of the Mobile District of the United Methodist Church, has an opening for a Store Manager. Experience with retail store operations and management required. Previous experience working with volunteers a plus. A job description is available by request at opendoorsstore@gmail.com.  Resumes from interested candidates should be submitted by Monday, July 21, 2014 to Sarah Doyle, Committee Chair, Open Doors Store, 4215 Government Boulevard, Mobile, AL 36693 or opendoorsstore@gmail.com(Posted 7/12/2014)
 
Do You Have Students Attending USA Wesley?
The USA Wesley Foundation would like to contact students from your church if they are attending The University of South Alabama.  If you have students currently attending, or heading that way in the fall, they would love to have their contact information so that they may welcome and invite them to be a part of our Wesley Foundation family.  Please e-mail this information to usawesley2@gmail.com.
 
 
 
Visit www.awfumc.org/INMprogress for Each District's Progress for Imagine No Malaria.
Has your Church participated?
 
 
"Becoming a More Effective Leader"  Series
10 a.m.- 2 p.m. one Thursday each month
at Frazer Memorial United Methodist Church, Montgomery
beginning in August 2014 and ending in May 2015

Registration is now underway!

This is a series of 10 seminars offered by the Academy for Congregational Excellence (A.C.E.), led by proven servant leaders who are volunteering their time to make the program possible.  To provide for active participation in small and large group discussions, enrollment is limited. Participants will be selected in the order in which registrations are received.

Lunch will be included. Participants are expected to attend all sessions.  The fee is $150.  Upon completion of the program, participants earn 4 CEUs. Click on the link below for registration information, seminar topics, and names of presenters. For more information visit http://awfumc.org.  Click here for the registration with list of courses and leaders.

 
Alabama-West Florida Conference Index:
 
MEF Scholarship Allocation Policy
(Shared by the AWFC Office of Ministerial Services) - The Ministerial Education Fund scholarship allocation policy effective March 1, 2013, is as follows:  Seminary Scholarships - $2000 per semester for full time student (9 hours is considered full time), prorated at $222 per hour for less than full time.  Course of Study Scholarships - full tuition paid for COS coursework (does not include registration fee paid by student), $100 for books per year. Click here for the scholarship application page at GBHEM.org.  Click here for more about the Ministerial Education Fund. 
 
Free Appraisal of Church Insurance Coverage
(AWFC Board of Trustees 9/7/2012) - "We all know it is important to have comprehensive insurance that covers all the needs of the local church....  Contact Bill Bullock (251-621-2041, BBullock@cpg.org) about insurance coverage. He is able to provide an appraisal of church property from United Methodist Insurance (UMI) without a sales pitch to the church. He does this at no charge. Local churches are then able to compare UMI coverage and cost to their current insurance provider. This comparison will provide churches an opportunity to look at insurance coverage and make sure their coverage meets the standards required by the Annual Conference.
    
Recommended Minimum Base Compensation for Ministers:
According to the 2014 Brochure of Reports, page 117, the recommended minimum salary for 2015 for all full-time appointed clergy is $35,000.
According to the 2013 Brochure of Reports, page 124, the recommended minimum salary for 2014 for all full-time appointed clergy is $33,800.
 
... is Frank DunnewindYou can reach Frank toll-free at (888) 873-3127.  Update:  Pensacola District, you can contact Rev. Paula Roane at 850-862-4169 (Trinity United Methodist Church, Fort Walton Beach).  Download Safe Sanctuaries Workshop Presentation/Hand-outs 2013 (70-page pdf)
 

 
Blue Lake News
 
 
Blue Lake Seeks Executive Director
The Board of Trustees of Blue Lake United Methodist Assembly is seeking to hire a full-time Executive Director. This person will be responsible for managing all aspects of camp including operations, programming, staff supervision, facilities, financial accountability, fund raising, and Christian hospitality. The Executive Director will report to the Blue Lake Board of Trustees. The ideal candidate will be grounded in Christian faith consistent with beliefs of the United Methodist Church, possess a bachelor's degree, have camp management experience, practice Christian hospitality, possess excellent communication and organizational skills, thrive in a team environment, and be detail-oriented with the ability to multi-task. Compensation is dependent on experience and includes on-site housing, benefits and meals in camp when served for guests. Applications will be accepted until July 31, 2014. Please send resume, reference and cover letter to Rev. Olivia Poole
 
Blue Lake Camp Discovery
From the Mobile District:  
Please help support the Camp Discovery Event this summer at Blue Lake. Every year about 80 children and youth attend the session of camp devoted to the Mobile Inner City Mission's Taylor Park and the Dumas Wesley Community Center.  This is an important and life-changing event in the lives of these children and their families.  Please pray about giving a $186 campership for this year's session, or a donation in any amount. You can give online at www.bluelakecamp.com or mail to Blue Lake Camp, 8500 Oakwood Lane, Andalusia, AL 36420. Please put Camp Discovery on your check's memo line! 

 

Camp Discovery at Blue Lake is one of the nineteen Conference Advance Ministries in the Alabama-West Florida Conference.  The Advance program was created to give churches and individuals the opportunity to go the extra mile in giving. 100% of each gift given through the Advance is used for its intended mission or ministry. Your gifts through the Advance fulfill both physical and spiritual needs to make a life-changing and long-lasting impact. For more information about giving through the Advance, visit www.awfumc.org/advance. You can also make online donations at that link.
 
Blue Lake Announces New Program Director
(Andalusia, AL) - From Blue Lake:  "Blue Lake Camp is excited about the arrival of our new Program Director, Eric Hindmon! Eric recently moved into camp with his lovely wife, Andrea, and son Liam. Already he is visioning exciting additions to the camp program and facility.  Eric has lots of experience with recreational elements like challenge courses and archery, and his deep faith is helping him plan for meaningful programming for all ages.  We are excited as this summer approaches and you all get to know Eric better.  You can reach him at programs@bluelakecamp.com or 334 222 5407. "
 
Blue Lake Summer Camps
 
Blue Lake Extreme Camp for the Visually Impaired
For details click here or on the graphic (right) or visit http://BlueLakeCamp.com.
        

 
Around the Web
 
 
Children's Ministry Director Position - Tuscumbia, AL
Tuscumbia First United Methodist Church (TFUMC), located in beautiful, downtown Tuscumbia, AL, is a Christ-centered congregation that is seeking a full-time Children’s Ministry Director. The Children’s Ministry Director will develop, implement and lead a dynamic children’s ministry program, calendar of activities and special events which are designed to include all aspects of spiritual growth from birth through sixth grade. TFUMC has a membership of over 900 and an average weekend attendance of 410. The successful candidate will be a strong, adaptable leader and will understand the importance of being a team player. This person will make the spiritual growth of children and the best interest of the church top priorities. Requirements include a strong Christian faith and a testimony that reflects a call to the ministry. A relevant college degree and at least three years of experience in a mid or large size church are preferred. Interested candidates should submit a resume, cover letter and three references to brodavid@tuscumbiaumc.org by Friday, August 15th, 2014.
 
 
Resources for Clergy and Congregations
(The Lewis Center) - Knowing how important pastoral transitions are, the Lewis Center for Church Leadership develops resources to help clergy and congregations during such times.

Some of you already use the free download “50 Ways to Welcome Your New Pastor” available at http://www.churchleadership.com/pdfs/50Ways/50_Ways_to_Welcome_New_Pastor.pdf.
 
This year there is an updated version of “Suggestions for Churches with a Young Pastor” available at http://www.churchleadership.com/pdfs/ToThePoint/Suggestions_for_Churches_with_a_Young_Pastor.pdf.
 
New this year is “Suggestions for Churches with a Single Pastor” available at http://www.churchleadership.com/pdfs/ToThePoint/Suggestions_for_Churches_with_a_Single_Pastor.pdf.

Resources for building, improving, and strengthening ministry are available at http://www.churchleadership.com.
Here are sample "50 Ways to --" pdfs from ChurchLeadership.com:   
 

Disciple Fast Track 

Dear Colleague in Ministry,

As many of you know, Disciple Bible Study has been a life-changing study taken by millions worldwide. It is now in a dynamic new format that allows participants to encounter the Bible in less time.

Please take 2 minutes and watch this video about Disciple Fast Track. We are inviting a limited number of church leaders (300) to participate in the final year of testing. We hope you will consider this new opportunity. Please click here (or copy and paste this URL into your browser) to view this presentation:

 

 
Thank you for watching. For more information about becoming one of our 300 leaders, please visit http://disciplefasttrack.com. Please feel free to forward this email.

God's blessing on your ministry,
Bishop Richard Wilke

Find online courses for Christian leaders at www.BeADisciple.com.

 
If You Happen to Find Any Broken Web Links....
At http://UMCPensacolaDistrict.org we try to keep the Web links updated, but if you come across one that gives you a message like "page no longer exists" or "file not found," try going to the source's home page (first part of the link URL) and doing a word search on the topic at the site. As resources improve and update their websites, this sometimes breaks links we've shared with you on our site. It's all good, all a part of progress! The information may still be there, but just might take a little personal digging on your part to find where it was moved - or please contact the district office. We'll be glad to help!  - Mary, Pensacola District Administrative Assistant   
 
Alabama-West Florida Conference in the Top Ten
(Facebook.com/AWFUMC on 2/3/2014) - From our Bishop, "Just finished talking to Lovett Weems at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C., who shared the good news: Alabama-West Florida Conference of The United Methodist Church is in the Top 10 Conferences for receiving clergy age 35 and younger! I'm celebrating the great work of this great conference!"
Pastoral Transitions in the Age of Social Media
Should pastors "friend" on Facebook? Should they "unfriend" when they leave a church?
(Alban, article by Adam Walker Cleveland) - "I still remember sitting in classroom discussions in seminary, talking about how pastors really shouldn’t become friends with parishioners. We talked about the power and boundary issues, and about how it just made things too difficult when you were called to another church; what happened to those friendships? Could you still stay in touch? What could you talk about? ....  So, what happens when you leave a church? ....  Do you just unfriend everyone on Facebook? Unfollow everyone on Twitter?"  Full article here.
 
Pensacola District Hosts SEJ Bishops
The Pensacola District, along with Bishop Paul L. Leeland, hosted the Southeastern Jurisdiction College of Bishops in Pensacola, FL, in January 2014. Their focus was to build alignment for effective clergy and fruitful congregations throughout the Church. The Pensacola District, under the leadership of Dr. Jeremy K. Pridgeon, raised 100% of the funds to host this group and their spouses. In addition to regularly scheduled meetings for the Bishops, the spouses enjoyed visiting the Naval Aviation Museum and Historic Pensacola Village, as well as enjoying several local eateries. Thanks be to God for the leadership and commitment this groups brings to our connection.  [You can view this 1/13/2014 AWFC article online here.]
 
Church Vitality: Professions of Faith Rise
(UMNS) - Here is some encouraging news to start the year. For the first time in 11 years, United Methodist annual (regional) conferences in the United States reported an increase in total professions of faith in 2012. Preliminary figures for professions of faith show a gain from 123,986 in 2011 to 124,635 in 2012 - less than 1 percent, but still an upward trajectory. Many of the leaders at this fall's Council of Bishops meeting in Lake Junaluska, N.C., applauded the news as a welcome development after decades of declining U.S. membership and worship attendance. Full article is here.
 
 
Clergy Pension Changes January 1, 2014
(AWFC Pension & Benefits Office) - Currently, clergy under episcopal appointment to local churches and conferences receive benefits in the Clergy Retirement Security Plan (CRSP). Effective January 1, 2014, only full-time or clergy with episcopal appointment at 75% are eligible for coverage in CRSP. Clergy serving at 50% and less are no longer eligible for continued participation in CRSP.
 
Each church is encouraged to become a sponsor of the United Methodist Personal Investment Plan (UMPIP) so that clergy members are able to make personal contributions into their account. While it is not required for the church to make a contribution into UMPIP for the clergy person to participate, the church may choose to make a contribution into the clergy member's account. For the clergy person to participate, the church must complete the UMPIP adoption agreement. For an adoption agreement please contact BeLinda Carnegie (Belinda@awfumc.org) at the Conference Pension and Benefits office.
 
Beginning January 1, 2014, full-time and 75% clergy will be required to contribute at least 1% of their plan compensation to UMPIP to benefit from the 1% contribution to their CRSP Defined Benefit Account. (Posted 12/2/2013)
 
The November 25, 2013, AWFC article about this is here.
 
What to Include in Writing Congregational Policies
The General Board of Discipleship offers direction on what to include in writing congregational policies on sexual abuse / harassment / misconduct / prevention. The page to visit is http://www.gbod.org/lead-your-church/what-should-our-policy-include.  
 
 
Share If You "Like"
What would happen if we all shared the Gospel through Facebook? I mean, on a personal level, through these myriad branched connections, tell the world what Jesus has done for us?  How long would it take the words of thousands of witnesses on Facebook to reach all ends of the earth about our Savior?
   
     
Free Video Resources from the Lewis Center
The Lewis Center for Church Leadership has prepared an 8-minuted video titled "Why Giving Matters and Clues for Improving It." Feel free to use this video to encourage the spiritual gift of giving in your congregation. You may view and download it at http://www.churchleadership.com/funding.  Last fall’s video on “Why Worship Attendance Matters and Clues for Improving It” is still available at http://www.churchleadership.com/attendance.  If you'd like to receive the Lewis Center’s free biweekly online newsletter, Leading Ideas, you can subscribe at www.churchleadership.com
  
http://www.churchleadership.com/resources/Leading_ideas.asp
  
Is Your Church's Listing at UMC.org Up to Date?
Did you know that each United Methodist local church has its own page at UMC.org in the international Find-a-Church directory? Click here to find and update your church's Find-A-Church page.
 
United Methodist Men - News & Chartering
Click here for UMM news and information about annual chartering re-certification.    
 
New Worship Service Times?
Pastors/Secretaries, if your church's worship and Sunday School times have changed, please log-in and update the Local Church information. Your District Superintendent is visiting churches, and your Church Locator Page will need to show the correct information.  Thank you!  
 
Follow / News Links:
 

 
 
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