The Pensacola District of The United Methodist Church
Saturday, May 28, 2016
Here for You - Serving Jesus
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Volunteers Needed for Potato Drop Saturday, July 23 - Milton, FL
On Saturday, July 23, First United Methodist Church of Milton is hosting a Produce Drop in partnership with the Society of St. Andrew as part of Safer Santa Rosa's Day of Service. The Society of St. Andrew will deliver a tractor-trailer truckload of produce to the church’s property located at 6830 Berryhill Street. Approximately 100 volunteers are needed to bag the produce so that it can be distributed by the Society of St. Andrew to agencies in Santa Rosa County that feed the hungry. Volunteers should bring their own work gloves. Children age 10 and above are welcome but must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.
6 p.m. at Crestview First United Methodist Church.
This event is for all Pensacola District pastors and their families. Reservations open July 1 and close July 12, 2016.  Please RSVP at
Inquiry about VBS Materials
Warrington UMC is redoing a VBS that first came out in 2005 called "Lift Off." We are in need of any materials from this VBS but especially the director's manual.  If you have materials, please contact the church (850-455-0306 or, Pastor Bob Bailey (850-380-3198 cell/txt or or Mrs. Nikki Lile (850-723-8026 or
Local Church Positions Available
Submit church listings at then send us the link after your ad is posted and we'll include yours here.
Employment Opportunities at Crosspoint (Posted 5/14/2016) - See Below
Director of Children's Ministry Needed - Thomasville, AL (Demopolis District, Posted 5/03/2016)
Employment Opportunities at Crosspoint UMC
Teachers, Assistants, and Subs: (Posted 5/25/2016)
Crosspoint Academy, Niceville Campus, is accepting applications for teachers, assistants and subs. Part-time hours range between 7:15 a.m. -5:45 p.m. and days vary. Applicants must be willing to obtain necessary training hours to meet Gold Seal accreditation and state licensing requirements. Please download an application online and submit in person to the Children's Welcome Desk. For more information regarding this position please contact Kathy Trawick at 678-4411 ext.165 or email
Part-time Music Teacher: (Posted 5/25/2016)

Crosspoint Academy, Niceville Campus, is looking for a part-time music teacher that will also direct our music performances throughout the school year. For more information, please contact Kathy Trawick at 678-4411 ext.165 or email Please download an application online and submit in person to the Children's Welcome Desk. For more information regarding this position please contact Kathy Trawick at 678-4411 ext.165 or email

Room Set-Up Team: (Posted 5/14/2016)
Crosspoint is seeking one or two part-time Room Set Up people (12 man-hours / week) to set up rooms for three separate events:

1. Wednesday afternoon (3 man-hours) for completion before 4:00 p.m.
2. Friday day through Saturday night. (Work can be done anytime between). Crosspoint Theater (for Café Service) (4 man-hours):
3. Sunday afternoon (5 man-hours) anytime after 10:30 a.m. for completion before 4:00 p.m

Individuals must sign and abide by our Staff Covenant and consent to a background check. Pay starts at $10.00 per hour. This position will require physical strength for tear down and set-up of heavy items (tables, chairs and trash removal). It will also require physical stamina to accomplish the task promptly. We would prefer 2 people (6 hours each per week), although one person working 12 hours can do it.

Applications and a copy of the Covenant must be submitted by 5:00 p.m., May 24, 2016. Contact George Boles, 678-4411 ext. 120,
Event Facilitators On Call: (Posted 5/14/2016)
Crosspoint is seeking a number of people who would be on call for set up and tear down when we have special/extra events. The days, time of day and number of hours varies by the event. These will be paid positions and you must be willing to be placed on a call list as needed. Ample advanced schedules will be available for your planning purposes. Contact George Boles, 678-4411 ext. 120, or for more information email
Custodian - Central Office: (Posted 5/14/2016)
Crosspoint is seeking a part-time custodian to work 6 hours a week in our new Central Services office. Days and hours are flexible. Standard custodial type duties are expected. Applications and a copy of the Covenant must be submitted by 5:00 p.m., May 31, 2016. Contact Blane Pearson for more information at,
Aldersgate Collecting Survival Bags for the Homeless
This might be a great idea for your Church, too!  The elementary Sunday School of Aldersgate United Methodist Church in Molino, FL is collecting items to provide survival bags for the homeless:  small flashlights, bug spray (travel size), sunscreen (travel size), rain ponchos, first aid kits (travel size), hand warmers (18-hour kind), travel bags, magnifying glasses, $5 gift cards to fast food, reading glasses from Dollar General, crossword puzzle books (small), and bookmarks with scripture. (Posted 2/11/2016)     
Community Ministries
Pensacola United Methodist Community Ministries (PUMCM) is in need of items for the Ministry Shop.  Items may be dropped off 9-5 Tuesdays through Saturdays at 2600 West Strong Street, one block off Cervantes between "T" and "U" Streets. PUMCM is located at Richards Memorial United Methodist Church in the Brownsville area of Pensacola.  The website is
Community Life Church in Gulf Breeze
In a church-wide vote September 23, 2015, Gulf Breeze United Methodist Church members voted "yes" to launch their Soundside Campus as a stand-alone United Methodist Church in 2016. (More here in the September 28 AWFC NewsCONNECTION ... here in local newspaper.)  On January 3, 2016, Soundside Campus officially became a stand-alone Church, now known as Community Life United Methodist Church. The pastor is Rev. Scott Veroneau.
Crosspoint Is #9 in "Top 25"
Crosspoint United Methodist Church is now up to #9 in Len Wilson's 2016 edition of "Top 25 Fastest Growing Large United Methodist Churches."  Crosspoint now has multiple campuses in the Niceville / Crestview, FL area. In the 2015 edition, Crosspoint was # 12.  
Congratulations, All Stars Churches in 2015!!
* Christ, Milton (Ronald Bearden, Pastor)
* Crosspoint (Rurel Ausley, Senior Pastor)
* Destin (Barry Carpenter, Pastor)
* Jay (Ebb Hagan, Pastor)
* Mae Edwards (Byrd Mapoles, Pastor)
* McDavid (Ted Johnson, Pastor)
* New Hope, Robertsdale (Lee Bateman, Pastor)
* St. Paul, Gulf Breeze (Lance Whorton, Pastor)
All Stars is an annual recognition of Pensacola District Churches who meet three requirements in the course of a year: 1) pay 100% total Connectional Mission Giving, 2) have more than 50% attendance by membership, and 3) have a net gain in membership.

Pastor's Note: "The God Between" 
by Rev. Scott Veroneau
Gulf Breeze, Florida
(Scott Veroneau) - "On any given day, I might be laughing and celebrating with a family in a delivery room only to moments later receive a phone call from just down the hall informing me that a loving family member has left this world all too soon. I hang up the phone, hug the celebrating family, then start the walk towards a family that is undoubtedly hurting. It is in moments like this that I discover the God that is between.

"Two floors and a few hundred paces separate emotions that are on opposite ends of the spectrum. My feet grow heavy with each step as my heart starts peeling back the layers of joy previously experienced. Unearthed are the somber, raw feelings that come with the loss of a loved one. My fear is always that I will come up short, or maybe have nothing to offer.  Questions about what to say, and how to be present, flood my mind with each and every step.

"Somewhere about halfway in the journey, God always gets my attention. I am usually reminded that if I forget to let the Holy Spirit lead, I will come up short and I will have nothing to offer. God lovingly comforts my heart and settles my spirit. He is sufficient. I find that in this moment, I am able to release my design and my fears and trust in something greater than myself.  This is when I discover the God between...."  For the entire article please visit

Administrative Announcements 
Quick Links:
See also: or scroll down this page
   Clergy Moving Expenses Guideline for 2016  
   From the Lewis Center:  50 Ways to Improve Pastoral Transitions
   From the Lewis Center:  50 Ways to Welcome a New Pastor
 Information for Local Church Officers
Have you been elected to a local church leadership or committee position and you're not sure what your responsibilities are?  Be sure to visit the Pensacola District's Church Leadership Roles page at
Have you visited the Pensacola District's SPR page?  We've posted a lot of helpful information for Staff-Parish at, including the booklet used by Pensacola District Superintendent Tim Trent at our Leadership Inspirational Training Event (LITE Day) January 10, 2016. 

Required Workshops for Ministerial Candidates / Moving Clergy / New Clergy
June 24-25 - AWFC Group Candidacy Retreat
July 28-29 - The Beginning Pastors' Workshop
Cokesbury Cares Program
The Cokesbury Cares Program is designed to help churches who've had a catastrophic event by offering FREE resources to help the get back on their feet.  Application requires signature by the church's district superintendent and can be emailed to or Here is a brochure, but please note that the address on the brochure has changed to 2222 Rosa L Parks Blvd., Nashville, TN 37228-0988.
For more information contact our area's Cokesbury Community Resource Consultant:
Ken Summerlin
Cokesbury Community Resource Consultant

Around the Conference   

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          Alabama-West Florida Conference
        Daily Cares and Concerns
           Prayer Calendar
           Prayer Wall
           Submit Prayer Requests

Director of Children's Ministries Needed - Thomasville, AL 
The Thomasville United Methodist Church (Thomasville, AL) is currently seeking qualified applicants for Director of Children’s Ministries. For information about requirements, job description, and salary, please contact Gay McNair at  We are excited to be entering this new phase of spiritual formation for our children and our church!  (Posted 5/03/2016)  Continue here for other positions available. >>

Pre-Annual Conference 2016 News
Quick Links:
Annual Conference 2016 is quickly approaching! This year's theme is the fourth part of the SEND Model many in the conference have adopted. It is, "The Great Commission: Sending Disciples." We are most appreciative to Dr. Tim Thompson and his staff at Frazer Memorial UMC in Montgomery, AL, for hosting us again this year as well as Dr. Lawson Bryan and his staff at Montgomery FUMC for hosting the ordination and commissioning service. This year we welcome Bishop Gregory Palmer and Dr. Kevin Watson as special guests. We are honored to announce that Robert McMichael and Jarvis Wilson will be leading our music once again. Please note several changes to annual conference.
Annual conference is Sunday, June 12-Wednesday, June 15, 2016. The reservation system is available by clicking here. Use this system only if you or members in your group wish to reserve a meal, volunteer for the Upper Room prayer line, participate in the Biometric Health Screening (persons under the conference health plan), and/or reserve nursery care that is available during a worship service. This system is not registering attendance to annual conference. Attendance is marked and counted at the registration/check-in table inside the host church. On-site registration will open on Sunday at 3:00 p.m.
This year's missional offering is for the Alabama-West Florida Disaster Response & Recovery Ministry. We will joyfully collect this offering at opening worship on Sunday, June 12. A bulletin insert will follow in the coming days.
We are excited to invite choir members from around the conference to participate in thOpening Worship Mass Choir. Choir directors who are interested in bringing members to participate should contact Wayne Sigler at Frazer Memorial UMC. Details about the evening and music selection information may be found here.
Meals will again be served at Frazer Memorial UMC for Monday and Tuesday lunch as well as the Laity Banquet Tuesday evening. Please make a reservation by clicking here if you plan to eat meals on campus or attend the banquet. Traditional group lunches may also choose to have their gatherings on campus and will arrange their own catering.
Frazer Memorial United Methodist Church is offering nursery care for children for the opening worship and memorial services. The Frazer nursery will be open 30 minutes prior to these two services. Montgomery FUMC will provide nursery care for the ordination/commissioning service. Both facilities offer this care for children up to five years of age. There is no charge for nursery care. Child care can be reserved here.
Please note the ordination and commissioning service will be a combined service this year. It will be Monday, June 13, starting at 7:00 p.m. at Montgomery FUMC.
In order to be good stewards of the conference budget, we will again forego printed worship bulletins for several services. Instead, a downloadable "Guide to Annual Conference" pdf will be provided several weeks before annual conference. In it will be worship bulletins, pages that were previously bag inserts and other relevant notes. You may wish to access it on your computer, tablet or phone, or print a hard copy on your own to bring with you. Printed worship bulletins will be provided to family members at the memorial service as a keepsake. The traditional ordination/commissioning service bulletin will be a printed version, as usual. Should you or your agency wish to submit a digital "insert," it must be laid out and submitted no later than April 15. It will go in the "Guide to Annual Conference" behind the agenda and worship bulletins that will be electronically distributed to all clergy and delegates. All inserts must be one page, 8.5 x 11 submitted as a pdf to Please do not submit a brochure repurposed. Digital inserts should be a general overview of your ministry. No late submissions will be accepted. All submissions must be affiliated with the United Methodist Church.
Your Brochure of Reports will be sent to your district office and either distributed at a gathering or picked up by each pastor. Please look for instructions from your district office. It is essential that you review this publication before arriving to annual conference. Should you choose the pdf download option, it is recommended that you download it from the conference Website before arriving at annual conference. [Update:  Click here to download the Brochure of Reports.] As we confirm more cost-effective methods to print/distribute our conference journal, we will provide an updated link with information and instructions for ordering as soon as it is available.
Alabama-West Florida boards and agencies have been given priority for the limited number of available display spots. The deadline for their response is April 15. Other pertinent inquiries may go to to be placed on a waiting list. Should there be openings, our conference registrar will contact you in order of request. Requests must be affiliated with the United Methodist Church.
We are again anticipating a great response to the request for UMCOR relief kits and supplies. We are encouraging local churches and groups to continue to assemble these kits or collect supplies to make up kits. A truck from Coleman American will accept donations in the parking lot at Frazer Memorial UMC. We appreciate any group that is willing to continue this ministry and will gladly accept these donations at annual conference. Click here for more.
As a reminder, we encourage you to prayerfully consider nominating someone for one of our conference awards: The Alice Lee Award, Jane Walker Scholarship Award, Francis Asbury Award, Harry Denman Evangelism Award and the Local Church Heritage Award. Click here for more information.
Blocked rooms, some with special rates for hotels in Montgomery, have been posted. Click here for an updated list.
We look forward to seeing you at annual conference in Montgomery, AL, June 12-June 15, 2016!
 AWFC Director of Communications
 (334) 356-8014 / (888) 873-3127 

Mass Choir for the 2016 AWF Annual Conference 
To: Choir Directors and Singers in the AWF Conference
For our opening worship service at the 2016 AWF Annual Conference on the evening of June 12, we would love to again have singers from all over the conference join the Frazer choir to make a mass chorus. It has been a real thrill at past conference services to see a great choir from all of our churches singing together.  If you can bring a group from your church, we will need for you to do the following things....  For Wayne's letter (pdf) please click here. 

Bring UMCOR Relief Kits to Annual Conference
At annual conference in June 2016 we will again collect UMCOR relief kits. UMCOR is especially requesting health kits and school kits. Relief supply kits help provide care for the most vulnerable people during times of crisis. UMCOR kits are distributed globally, and help sustain everyday life for people who lack ready access to essential supplies. Bring/send your kits to annual conference to the truck in the parking lot at Frazer, and Coleman American will ship the kits and supplies on to the Sager Brown depot in Baldwin, Louisiana. Visit for more details. Click here to see the flier with kit instructions.

Clergy Moving Expenses Guideline (2016 Brochure of Reports)

(Posted at AWFC 4/5/2016) - The first Sunday following the adjournment of Annual Conference shall be the last Sunday of pastoral responsibility for each conference year. The official moving day will be Tuesday, June 21, 2016 and may be adjusted according to the needs and concerns worked out in consultation with the clergy persons, the churches and approved by the District Superintendent. 

The entire June salary shall be paid to the pastor by the church from which he/she is moving. In effect 50% of the annual salary will be paid January through June; with the remaining 50% paid by the church receiving a new pastor. Health insurance contributions and/or premiums, as well as any UMPIP payments are to be deducted from the pastor’s compensation for the full month of June, with the receiving church beginning such payments in July.
Upon retirement, disability, termination, or death of a minister serving within the bounds of the Annual Conference and serving a full time appointments under the provisions of Paragraph 333.1 of the 2012 Book of Discipline of the United Methodist Church, the conference shall pay up to $2,500 for documented moving expenses to the first place of retirement, termination, or disability or the first place of dwelling for a surviving spouse. Moving expenses to be reimbursed shall not be incurred prior to retirement or termination notification to the Bishop and will be reimbursed after the move is completed. 
Guidelines for clergy under appointment
1.  Following notification of appointment change by the district superintendent, the Chairperson of the PPRC should contact the minister to be appointed to communicate the church’s policy in paying moving expenses and to discuss moving plans. 
2.  The receiving church is responsible for the first $3,000 of documented moving expenses and is encouraged to pay all documented expenses for the incoming ministerial family.
See also: 

AWFC Episcopal Nominee Lawson Bryan Launches Website 
Dr. Lawson Bryan, the Episcopal nominee from the Alabama-West Florida Conference, has launched his Website, We invite you to share his link as you are able so that the Southeastern Jurisdiction knows what a talented and dedicated leader he is. Join us in prayer for him. 
About Robert Lawson Bryan
Born June 13, 1950 in Quincy, Florida; raised in Dothan, Alabama
Graduated from Dothan High School in 1968
Bachelor of Science, Tulane University, New Orleans, Louisiana, cum laude
Master of Divinity, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, cum laude
Doctor of Ministry, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia
Married to Sherrill O. Cooper of Thomaston, AL. Their son, Philip, lives in Montgomery and is chief of staff for the president pro-tem of the Alabama State Senate.  On October 10, 2015, Philip and Brittany Woodham were married at First United Methodist Church Montgomery.
Pastoral Appointments:

1975—Associate Pastor, Trinity United Methodist Church, Opelika, AL.
1976—Pastor, Hiland Park United Methodist Church, Panama City, FL.
1980—Pastor, Dexter Avenue United Methodist Church, Montgomery, AL.
1986—Pastor, First United Methodist Church, Brewton, AL.
1990—Pastor, Ashland Place United Methodist Church, Mobile, AL.
1997—Pastor, First United Methodist Church, Dothan, AL.
2007-Current–Senior Pastor, First United Methodist Church, Montgomery, AL

"My experience with local churches includes ministering to a divided church, an inner city church, a grieving church, a county seat church, a baby boomer church, and churches whose membership ranges from small to midsize to large." - Lawson Bryan
For more about Dr. Lawson Bryan continue here.

2016 Annual Conference Award Committees Accepting Nominations
(AWF Conference) - Do you know someone in the Alabama-West Florida Conference who has exemplified outstanding leadership? Please prayerfully consider nominating them for the Alice Lee Award, Francis Asbury Award, Harry Denman Evangelism Award, Jane Walker Scholarship, and Local Church Award. More information and nomination packets can be found here. Pictured here is Mrs. Helen Edwards before she accepts the 2015 Alice Lee Award.

Wesley Heirs Annual Conference Luncheon June 13
The Annual Conference Wesley Heirs Luncheon will be held on Monday, June 13, 2016, in Room 6102 at Frazer Memorial United Methodist Church.  The luncheon will begin immediately following the Memorial Service, approximately noon.  All retired ministers and spouses are invited to attend. Our meal will be served in the room.  We will not have to go through the regular serving line.
Everyone needs to make a reservation(s) with Traci Herndon at the Conference Office.  Call her at 334-356-8014 or email her at  If you wish to make a reservation for Tuesday lunch and/or the Laity Banquet using the conference online system, DO NOT make a reservation(s) there for lunch on Monday.  Skip over that question.  This will avoid a double head count.  
Everyone will need to pick up a ticket for the lunch from Traci Herndon at the registration desk Sunday afternoon or Monday morning. Everyone will need to turn in a ticket as we gather for the luncheon.  There is no charge for lunch but you do need a ticket.  
We appreciate Traci helping us with our reservations and tickets and Rev. Rusty Taylor at Frazer for making the arrangements for us to be served in the room.  It will be a great time of fellowship, seeing long-time friends and sharing in the comradeship of the ministry that has meant so much to all of us over the years.  Plan to join in this gathering of Wesley Heirs.
Walter and Dean Albritton
Jim and Bobbie Dannelly
Co-Presidents, Wesley Heirs

Bishop Announces District Superintendent and AWFC Staff Appointments
(AWFC News, Montgomery, March 24, 2016) - Bishop Paul L. Leeland is pleased to announce Rev. Allen Newton has been appointed as the District Superintendent to the Demopolis District of the Alabama-West Florida Conference effective July 1, 2016.  Rev. Nancy Watson, pastor of Thomasville UMC, will be appointed as the Director of Connectional Ministries, also effective July 1, 2016. Dr. Chris Eckert, current Demopolis District Superintendent, and Dr. Cory Smith, current AWF Director of Connectional Ministries, will be appointed to local churches at the upcoming annual conference session.  For the full article continue here.
Earlier, on March 9, Bishop Leeland announced that Dr. Darren McClellan has been appointed as the District Superintendent to the Mobile District of the Alabama-West Florida Conference effective July 1, 2016.  Dr. Doug Pennington, current Mobile District Superintendent, will receive a new appointment in the coming days, as will Perdido Bay UMC. For the full article continue here.            

Important Dates
June 24-25 - AWFC Group Candidacy Retreat
The next Alabama-West Florida Conference Group Candidacy Retreat will be held June 24-25, 2016, at Camp Beckwith, Fairhope, AL. Before applying for the retreat, candidates contact their district office regarding admission to the Ministry Candidacy Program. (See also Application for Admission to the Ministry Candidacy Program.)   For more information please contact Erika Glawson at the AWF Conference Office of Ministerial Services at or 334-356-8014 or toll-free number 888-873-3127.
July 28-29 - The Beginning Pastors' Workshop
All pastors taking their first appointment in the Alabama-West Florida Conference are required to attend "The Beginning Pastors’ Workshop." For 2016 this event will be held July 28-29 at  Spring Hill College in Mobile, AL. Information is posted here, or contact the Alabama-West Florida Conference Office of Ministerial Services at (334) 356-8014 or toll-free (888) 873-3127.
August 2 - Meeting of the Pensacola District Committee on Ministry (dCOM)
The next dCOM meeting will be August 2, 2016. When Pensacola District Committee meetings are scheduled, announcement is posted here on our Officers page as well as on our Message Board.  As you go through the ministry process, keep a copy of ALL your documents. Every time you meet with the Committee on Ministry, bring all your paperwork with you. 

Water Crisis in Flint, Michigan:
Looking for Churches to Partner & Help

I am sure that you all know about the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, that began in April of 2014.  After Flint changed its water source from treated Detroit Water and Sewerage Department water to the Flint River, its drinking water had a series of problems.  The corrosive Flint River water caused lead from aging pipes to leach into the water supply, causing extremely elevated levels of the heavy metal. Children have been exposed to drinking water with high levels of lead and have experienced a range of serious health problems. The water change is also a possible cause of an outbreak of Legionnaires' disease in the county. 
The Alabama-West Florida Conference is reaching out to this community and looking for possible churches in each district to partner with one of the eight United Methodist congregations in the Flint area.  These churches are still distributing water, water pitchers, filters, filter replacements, all of which are quite expensive. In the last few months, the filters and pitchers have cost from $130K to $150K and that is at the bulk and discounted rate. Filters that are designed to last three months for normal water usage are only lasting one month with the water there.
A clear plan has not been determined about the exact details of the partnership (beyond the obvious financial support) but some needs to be considered are:
  • Teaching community members about nutrition, diet, community gardens, etc.  There are certain foods that one can eat to help mitigate the issues related to lead poisoning.  Good nutrition can go a long way toward helping everyone, lessening the long-term effects of the lead and other issues they face.
  • Early childhood education and literacy.  Children who have been poisoned by lead can have learning disabilities and need extra help in school.
  • Need for community health clinics, including nutrition and prenatal care.
  • Helping to rebuild trust in the community.
  • Overcoming the felt lack of care from the outside.
  • Helping them to sensitively respond to their members and neighbors. (One mother told her pastor that she felt guilty for poisoning her child.)
  • Other needs might include leadership training, curriculum/resource sharing.
Above all of these listed considerations, the partnership will primarily begin with prayer and listening, then may morph into something way beyond what one could imagine.
If you feel that your church has a desire to reach out and form a long term relationship with one of these churches or help with the financial burden of this crisis, please contact Susan Hunt at or 888-873-3127.

Huntingdon College Leadership Academy June 22-24:
Looking for Pastors & Churches to Sponsor Students
Huntingdon College invites pastors and youth ministers who serve United Methodist churches in the Alabama-West Florida and North Alabama Conferences of The United Methodist Church to sponsor high school juniors and/or seniors to participate in the Huntingdon Leadership Academy (HLA), June 22 - 24, 2016.   High school juniors and seniors who have the gifts and graces for ministry of any sort—whether as deacons or elders, missionaries, music ministers, children’s or youth pastors, worship leaders, or lay leaders, among the many ways to minister —are welcome at this retreat.  Click here for more information.
Stegall Seminary Scholarship Endowment Foundation - Spring 2016 Brochure
The Stegall Seminary Foundation's Spring 2016 brochure is hot off the press!  You can download it here. Thank you for your continued support of seminary students from the Alabama-West Florida Conference of The United Methodist Church. Your prayers and gifts make a real difference in the lives of our future clergy leaders!
2016 Clergy Health & Wellness Initiative Requirements
All clergy on the AWF Conference health insurance plan must complete the Healthy & Wellness Initiative by August 31, 2016. Please carefully review this information.  Beginning January 1, 2016, the Alabama-West Florida Annual Conference Board of Pension & Health Benefits launched the Health and Wellness Initiative Program. The goal of the program is to encourage our pastors and their dependents to live healthier lifestyles by providing them with personal health information, screening and coaching, thus helping the Conference to reduce and control the cost of health insurance claims. Clergy members on the conference active health insurance plan are required to complete the HealthQuotient and Biometric Screening by August 31, 2016. Dependents, retired clergy and their dependents and employees who are on the annual conference health plan are not required to complete the HQ and Biometric Screening but are welcome and encouraged to participate. Complete information here.    
Mid-Career Retirement Seminar
October 6, 2016
9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. at Covenant United Methodist Church, Dothan, AL
You must register in advance (the deadline is September 19, 2016) to receive lunch and be provided with a current, up-to-date copy of your United Methodist pension projection. The cost to attend this seminar is $5/individual and $10/couple. Click here for a brochure. The event page is here.
AWF Churches Awarded Rethink Church Grants
The Rethink Church program through United Methodist Communications awards three types of grants each year: Community Event Grants, Digital Advertising Grants, and New Church Start Grants. The churches listed below took part in one of these grant opportunities in 2015.
Digital Advertising Grants:
Fairhope UMC (Fairhope, AL)
New Hope UMC (Theodore, AL)
Orange Beach UMC (Orange Beach, FL)
Crestview First UMC (Crestview, FL)
Grace UMC (Mobile, AL)
Saraland UMC (Saraland, FL)
Shalimar UMC (Shalimar, FL)
In addition, Centro Missionaro Fort Walton (Fort Walton, FL) was awarded the New Church Start grant.  Many resources are available at
2015 Journal Available Through
The 2015 Journal is available online for purchase through Copies are $25 and will ship directly to your preferred location. Click here to order.
United Methodist Connectional Federal Credit Union 2016 Annual College Scholarships
Are you or do you know a member age 17-35 who is attending or planning to attend college and attend church in in one of the four conferences? If so, please let them know about your Credit Union's college scholarship program. Four winning applicants, one from each of our four conferences, Florida, North Georgia, South Georgia and Alabama-West Florida will receive a $1,000 scholarship each. More here.
Saliba Named AWF Conference Secretary
Dr. David Saliba, pastor at Greenville FUMC, has been named by Bishop Paul Leeland as the Alabama-West Florida Conference Secretary. Saliba began this role as of January 4, 2016. He succeeds Dr. Neil Epler, who has served in this role since 2013 and also served during previous quadrenniums. We extend our sincere appreciation to Dr. Epler for his years of service in this role and welcome Dr. Saliba to the annual conference leadership team. Should you need to contact Dr. Saliba, he can be reached at
Let Us Pray! Daily Prayer Unites Conference
(Dr. Cory Smith) - It is a joy to announce a new venture in prayer for the Alabama-West Florida Conference. Hopefully by now you have seen the daily prayer requests that have come from the Office of Connectional Ministries. These updates will also include prayers for individual churches and appointed pastors. Through the year we will prayer for every appointed pastor and for every church! The churches for which we are praying are the same listed on the printed wall calendars and also available here. In addition to the prayer email, a prayer page is available for details of prayer needs from the throughout the conference. What better way for us to connect with God and one another than prayer! As John Wesley stated years ago, “I continue to dream and pray about a revival of holiness in our day that moves forth in mission and creates authentic community in which each person can be unleashed through the empowerment of the Spirit to fulfill God's creational intentions.” May we join together in daily prayer for the mission of the church and for the community of people who are part of the Alabama-West Florida Conference! If you are not receiving the daily prayer newsletter and would like to, click here and check the "Let us Pray" box.  Update:  The Pensacola District archives the daily prayer concerns on their website's Ministers Page. Click here to view.
A Notice from the AWF Conference Fiscal Office
(IRS) - The Internal Revenue Service today issued the 2016 optional standard mileage rates used to calculate the deductible costs of operating an automobile for business, charitable, medical or moving purposes. Beginning on Jan. 1, 2016, the standard mileage rates for the use of a car (also vans, pickups or panel trucks) will be as follows. >>
Do You Have The AWF Conference App? 
Navigate the conference Website easier by downloading the free AWF app! Scan the QR code (pictured right) to download. Available for iPhones, iPads and Droid mobile devices.
Communications Audit for Local Churches
In August 2015 the AWF Conference Office of Communications published a "Communications Audit" for churches. We invite you to download this easy-to-read document and use it as a resource to evaluate what tools you are using to share your story. Click here to download. 
AWF Trustees Release Church Emergency Resource
 (AWFC) - AWF Trustees have developed a resource for local churches to use as they consider emergency preparedness in their congregation.  Emergency Guidelines for Churches can be found by clicking here. It is not a policy, it is simply a resource to “spark a conversation in your church on emergency preparedness.” The hope is that the Board of Trustees of each local church in our annual conference will consider how best to prepare for accidents, fires, natural disasters, and criminal behavior that may affect your local church.
AWF Conference News
You can subscribe to the AWFC NewsCONNECTION here.
For the AWFC NewsCONNECTION archives visit
The AWF Conference Journal
To view all the AWFC Journals from 2007 through 2015, continue here at the Pensacola District's FORMS & DOCS page.
For those who would like to get a printed copy, this year's AWF Conference Journal is distributed by 
The AWFC clergy directory will not be available to order online due to privacy concerns associated with public distribution of a directory document.
Continuing Education Chair
Rev. Dr. Geoffrey Lentz is overseeing continuing education credit.  If your local church offers an event  and wants CEUs awarded, please reach out to Dr. Lentz. (Posted 10/30/2014)
Do You Have Students Attending UWF or PSC?
The Wesley Foundation would like to contact students from your church if they are attending The University of West Florida or Pensacola State College.  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
Safe Sanctuaries
The AWF Conference Safe Sanctuaries contact person is Frank Dunnewind.  You can reach Frank toll-free at (888) 873-3127.  The Pensacola District contact person is Rev. Paula Roane, who can be reached at 850-862-4169 (Trinity United Methodist Church, Fort Walton Beach). 

Around the Web 
United Methodists in the News
Quick Links: (Scroll down the page for more!)
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General Conference May 10-20, 2016
( - The United Methodist Church’s top legislative body met at the Oregon Convention Center, the largest convention center in the Pacific Northwest, May 10-20, 2016. MORE here >>
GC2016 Wrap Up Bulletin Insert
(AWFC) - The AWF Communications Team has prepared a bulletin insert for you to use in your upcoming worship services. The insert features the highlights from General Conference and our Alabama-West Florida delegate news. Should you need a black and white version, simply adjust your printer settings. The layout of the file is for 8.5 x 11 paper, two sided. Click here to download insert. [The insert is also pictured below.]
"General Conference Votes of Note"
(AWFC) - General Conference delegates acted on hundreds of pieces of legislation, taking part in debates, prayerfully discerning options, and voting on consent calendars items. Some of the notable legislation from GC2016 is in this article.
General Conference Newsletter Archive
(AWFC) - If you were unable to catch the action of General Conference, click on the daily archive below for Alabama-West Florida Conference daily updates. 

Tuesday, May 10, 2016
Wednesday, May 11, 2016
Thursday, May 12, 2016
Friday, May 13, 2016
Saturday, May 14, 2016
Monday, May 16, 2016
Tuesday, May 17, 2016
Wednesday, May 18, 2016
Thursday, May 19, 2016
Friday, May 20, 2016

After General Conference
(AWFC) - For analysis, news stories, follow up, and looking back: 
Live Stream Archives: Find on-demand and downloadable versions of the daily General Conference plenary sessions, worship, and addresses.
Legislation Tracking: Search for legislation submitted by petition number, keyword or submitter for information regarding the actions taken on each piece of legislation.
General Conference Website: Continue to read news from General Conference 2016 at the General Conference website. 
Social Media: Follow the hashtags #UMCGC and #GC2016
General Conference News - Other
AWFC:  Highlights of General Conference
Complete coverage on General Conference can be found on our Website at and through United Methodist News Service. Photos above by Luke Lucas, AWF, and UMNS.
SEJ Episcopal Nominee Videos Available Online
Fourteen Episcopal candidates from the Southeastern Jurisdiction presented to delegates and guests on Tuesday, May 17 and Wednesday, May 18, 2016, during lunch breaks at General Conference. All candidates were asked to answer two questions within a six-minute time frame. The first question asked nominees to name two of the most important accomplishments in their ministry, while the next question allowed this group to inform SEJ delegates where their passion lies and how they would bring it to life, if elected. Elections for Bishop in the Southeastern Jurisdiction Conference will be held July 12-15, 2016, at Lake Junaluska, NC. Click here to see nominee videos.
Need Help with Your Children's Summer Bible Program?
As of April 14, the Auburn Wesley Foundation still has calendar openings available for Children's Caravan!  Children's Caravan is a 3-day Bible school experience designed for churches with up to 30 to 50 children in kindergarten through 5th grade. The Children's Caravan Team will be prepared to lead a scripture-based program for 3 days with your children.  This program will include story time, music, crafts, and games!  We'll send you a list beforehand of supplies to purchase for crafts. The VBS can be morning or evening, based on what is best for your church. Our team is excited about sharing the love of Christ with children in and around Alabama. For MORE visit     
How to Apply for a Loan with the AWF United Methodist Foundation
Crestview First United Methodist Church was featured on page 3 of the AWF United Methodist Foundation's winter 2016 newsletter, GENEROSITY MATTERS. The article is about how to apply for a church loan.  For more information click here for the newsletter, visit, or click here for the AWFUMF Facebook page.
Free Clergy Tax Video Now Available
Clergy face some distinctive tax regulations and often need guidance from tax professionals with experience working with clergy. The Lewis Center has prepared an informational video to help seminary students and clergy understand better the issues to which they and their tax preparers need to give attention. We use it as part of our seminary class on Personal Finances for Religious Professionals. If you feel this 12-minute video, Clergy Compensation and Taxes, may be useful to clergy with whom you work, feel free to share it.
Lovett H. Weems, Jr.
Professor of Church Leadership
Director, Lewis Center for Church Leadership
Wesley Theological Seminary        
SEJ Conference Begins July 13, 2016
( - The opening date for the 2016 Southeastern Jurisdictional Conference will be Wednesday, July 13, 2016.  
Free Online Audio Bible 
At the link below you can hear a dramatic reading of the Bible. You can set it to the Bible translation you prefer, start at a particular passage, run or not run continuously, and pause it and restart at any time.
Test Your Knowledge of United Methodist History
(Article here) - The United Methodist Church has existed in various forms for more than 200 years. Test your knowledge of its history with these questions. Pass on this quiz to others to encourage them to test their knowledge as well. This quiz is a partnership between United Methodist Communications and the General Commission on Archives and History
Explore Methodist History
At the History section of there are features where you can learn about many of the pioneers of the Methodist Movement and their faith stories. Look under the Who We Are section and enjoy discovering more about the denomination's roots. Perfect to share with new and longtime members! For more continue here.
Resources for Clergy and Congregations
(From The Lewis Center) - Includes the topics "Concluding Ministry in One Setting" and "Beginning Ministry in a New Setting."
Five Ways to Support Your Pastor's Family
(Ministry Matters) - It’s no secret that the life of a pastor’s family is filled with unique challenges. There are few roles that mix work and family life as closely as pastoral ministry, which creates for clergy families a constant battle to maintain healthy boundaries. The pressure from the church and the surrounding community will inevitably take a toll on families unless adequate support is provided. For the complete article, posted November 3, 2014, please click here 

Free E-Newsletter from the Lewis Center
Leading Ideas is a weekly online newsletter of the Lewis Center for Church Leadership of Wesley Seminary in Washington, DC. Each week subscribers receive information, resources, and strategies to help advance God’s mission in ministry. To check it out and subscribe go to
Articles about Burn-out
Online Training Courses
12 Ways to Stay Connected with College Students
United Methodist Communications has an article on this topic at  Tips include things you can do before the students leave, while they are at college, and when they come home.  
Safe Sanctuary Policies
5 Things Small Churches Can Uniquely Offer
(Rev. Ben Gosden) - "Church leadership has long held a bent toward the 'bigger is better'....  Instead of trying to mimmick [sic] what the large churches in your area are doing (only to come up short of their quality because you don’t have the money or resources to duplicate it), here are 5 things I believe small churches can uniquely offer the world right where they are...."   More here
Church Newsletters
United Methodist Men - Chartering
Click here for UMM news and information about chartering.  

The silence from Christians
about abortion is deafening.
"If this moment does not
bring you  to outrage
and to tears,
there is something wrong.”
- Ed Stetzer, Christianity Today

The United Methodist Church and "World Debate"
5 Reasons the Church Should Talk About Abortion
(Seedbed, July 30, 2015) - "Last week, a YouTube video surfaced showing Deborah Nucatola, the senior director of medical services at Planned Parenthood, discussing how she procures intact organs while performing abortions.... While the video has sparked renewed outrage over abortion, it has arguably prompted even more silence -  even among Christians. The silence has been so deafening that it prompted Ed Stetzer at Christianity Today to write an article headlined, “Where are the Mainline and Progressive Evangelical Voices Speaking Up after that Planned Parenthood Tragedy?” “If this moment does not bring you to outrage and to tears,” Stetzer writes, “there is something wrong.” Continue here for the entire article. >>
What Does The United Methodist Church Believe About Abortion?
With Planned Parenthood in the news a lot lately, the question is asked, "What does the The United Methodist Church believe about abortion?" For this visit In relation to this comes the question, "What does the Church believe about being a nurturing community?" For this visit The Book of Resolutions 2012 (more here) says that we "care enough about people's lives to risk interpreting God's love, to take a stand, to call each of us into a response." While being a nurturing community reaching out to the world to share the Gospel and love of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world, "We mourn and are committed to promoting the diminishment of high abortion rates." (See complete article here.) To learn more about life inside the womb and what happens during an abortion, presentations are available at this link.
Update:  AWF Petition to Withdraw from RCRC Passes GC2016
Petition number 60837, entitled “Withdraw from Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice” was passed by the 2016 General Conference voting body with a vote of in favor of 425 to 268. This petition was co-sponsored by the AWF Conference, along with the Mississippi, North Carolina, Indiana and Western Pennsylvania Conferences. The petition reads, “RCRC is a one-sided political lobby that opposes all disapproval or limitation of abortion.  RCRC’s advocacy often directly contradicts our Social Principles on abortion but it still uses our Church’s name. Several annual conferences and many United Methodist leaders have urged the Church to end all association with RCRC.” Petition 60838 was also approved that requires The General Board of Church & Society to withdraw their membership from RCRC.
What Does The United Methodist Church Say About  Same-sex Marriage?
( - "Our commitment to biblical truth does not depend upon judicial affirmation by the Supreme Court of this or any other nation," said the Rev. Thomas Lambrecht, according to an article posted by Friday, June 26. Rev. Lambrecht is vice president and general manager of "Good News," an unofficial United Methodist advocacy group that supports the denomination's teachings on homosexuality. The article quotes him as saying, “Most of the delegates who would favor retaining the church’s current position on marriage do so out of deep conviction and understand that the church is at different times and various points at odds with the culture in which it lives." Church law bans clergy from performing same-sex marriages and forbids churches from hosting such ceremonies.  Rev. Sky McCracken, a district superintendent in western Kentucky, noted that both capital punishment and abortion are legal but United Methodists challenge both.  United Methodists have varied reactions to the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling that establishes same-sex civil marriage as a constitutional right, but many United Methodists agree on one thing: The decision likely will escalate a longtime denominational debate on the church's position on homosexuality. To read the entire article continue here. >>
Other Articles:
If You Happen to Find Any Broken Web Links....
At 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   
Update Your Find-A-Church Listing
Provided by United Methodist Communications and the local church, Find-A-Church allows you to introduce your church family to the community. By updating your church profile, you will help seekers find your church. Your profile serves as a powerful online tool for evangelism. Find-A-Church has almost 35,000 United Methodist Church profiles gaining more than 12,000 page views daily. Take advantage of this tool and get started now!  Update your church's profile by searching here.  By updating your church profile, you can:
  • Welcome visitors personally to your congregation.
  • Display your church's ministries and activities.
  • Add details about your worship schedule.
  • Link to your church's Web site for a closer look.
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! 
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