The Pensacola District of The United Methodist Church
Saturday, May 30, 2015
Here for You - Serving Jesus
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Clergy Birthdays
in the Month of May
Happy birthday to
Ebb Hagan, Andy Blackmon,
Rual Morris, Kathy Knight,
Andres Doimeadios,
Oscar Brooks, Lew Wilder,
Dann Ward, Brice Early,
Ronnie Bearden!
 
If you'd like to send a card
click here for contact info.
 
The Pensacola District Message Board
 
  
 
Click on the news item for the article.  Scroll down the page for more!  
                          

                        
Around the Pensacola District  
 
 
An Invitation to Receptions in Honor of Pensacola District Superintendent
Farewell Reception
To say farewell to Dr. Jeremy Pridgeon as our outgoing District Superintendent, and to celebrate his five years of ministry in the Pensacola District, we will have a reception at Gadsden Street United Methodist Church June 7, 3-4 p.m.

Welcome Reception
To welcome Dr. Timothy Trent as our new District Superintendent, we will have two receptions at two locations in the district.  The first reception will be at Cokesbury United Methodist Church (at the atrium) on July 19, 3-4 p.m.  The second reception will be at Crosspoint United Methodist Church South Crestview campus (at the Café) July 26, 3-4 p.m.

These receptions are sponsored by the Pensacola District Committee on Superintendency. Reservations are not required. For more information contact Rev. Daniel Randall at danielwrandall@gmail.com or 251-234-1122.
 
Milk and Honey Ministries Ask for Support for Summer Camp 2015
(PENSACOLA, FL) - Milk and Honey's "SOAR" (Summer Opportunities and Recreation) Summer Camp will begin on June 8th and run through August 14th.  Click here for a brochure that explains the program and activities for the summer and needs for money, time, and volunteers. 
 
4th Annual Fairway to Heaven Golf Tournament
1 p.m. Friday, June 12 at the Shalimar Pointe Golf Course
sponsored by Trinity United Methodist, Ft. Walton Beach, FL
This tournament is open to all men, ladies, and juniors. Proceeds will go to support the missions of Trinity UMC including The Backpack feeding program, Alabama Rural Ministry, and the Our Daily Bread food ministry. All entry fees include golf cart, green fees, refreshments, and prizes. Sponsorships are available.  For a registration form visit http://www.trinityfwb.org/#/whats-happening/golf-tournament.
 
 
DCOM Meeting August 18
The District Committee on Ministry will meet at 9 a.m. August 18, 2015, at the Dennison Administration Building of Gadsden Street United Methodist Church, 901 East Gadsden Street, Pensacola, FL. This meeting is for recommendation for provisional status and Certified Candidates (first time and recertification). The Committee gathers at 9 a.m., scheduled interviews begin 9:30 a.m. Scheduling of the District Committee meetings and interviews is done through Rev. Bob Bailey, Chairperson.
 
Congratulations, Pensacola District All Stars!
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,
                3) have a net gain in membership.
 
Congratulations to these Churches that met all three requirements in 2014!
      * Bagdad
      * Baker
      * Christ
      * Crosspoint (Niceville)
      * Jay
      * St. Paul, Gulf Breeze  
 
 
Top 25 Fastest Growing Large United Methodist Churches

Crosspoint (# 20)  and Gulf Breeze (# 18) United Methodist Churches are featured in this year's "Top 25 Fastest Growing Large United Methodist Churches." Both Churches are in the Pensacola District of the Alabama-West Florida Conference. The article and list are at http://lenwilson.us/top-25-fastest-growing-large-umc-2015/.

The Matthew Initiative
Working with The Matthew Initiative, volunteers from Bellview, Gonzalez, and Richards Memorial United Methodist Churches of Pensacola recently trained in Crestview for a new children's program to launch this summer. Photos pictured to the right are courtesy of Kathy Strader. (Posted 4/14/2015)  
 
Bishop Announces New District Superintendent and Conference Staff  Appointments
Article here. Effective July 1, 2015, Dr. Jeremy Pridgeon will be the Assistant to Bishop Leeland and the Director of Ministerial Services and new Pensacola District Superintendent will be Dr. Tim Trent.   
         

 
Administrative Announcements
 
Sneak Peak at What's New for Annual Charge Conferences 2015
Each District Church Elects a Mission Board Rep - At the 2015 Charge Conferences, each Church of the Pensacola District (only) shall elect one person to serve this new position:  LC-DMBR - District Missions Board Representative. The Report of the Committee on Lay Leadership form will be revised to include the new position. Click here for more (a pdf) and a peak at the new form.
 
New Pastor Compensation Report Form - In April 2015 the Pastor Compensation Report Form was revised.  Please no longer use the old form.  You can download the new one here as a fillable pdf or here as a fillable MS Word document.
 
Download & Share Brochure of Reports - Revised 4/21/15 to Include 2 Missing Nominee Profiles
Please share the Brochure of Reports pdf download with your delegates for Annual Conference. The link is available at the bottom right of the AWFC.org home page or download here
 
Please note that, although the Pensacola District Office and nominees met all requirements and were well within the deadline for submitting the forms, the Brochure of Reports omitted two of the Pensacola District's three Laity Nominee Profiles approved by district conference: Duane Keck's and Beverly Maddox's. Our third nominee, Gene Floore, was included in the Brochure.  Peggy Lou Akerman and Brenda Alford were pictured as Pensacola District nominees, but actually Brenda is from the Marianna-Panama City District and Peggy was self-nominated. An errata of the profiles will be inserted into the Brochure of Reports as well as announcement made at Annual Conference. 
 
Please place these Pensacola District events on your church calendar:
Important Dates Regarding Candidacy / Licensing / New Clergy Appointments:
Deadline for Clergy Information June 27, 2015
Please e-mail the district office your new contact info by June 27. The information you send will be used to update the AWFC database, AWFC directory, and Pensacola District Directory. Each year we distribute the district directory at the District Welcoming Dinner, so it is very important to meet this deadline.  For a list of what information is needed please visit http://umcpensacoladistrict.org/RightStart.

The district office will also need a compensation report form from those with new clergy appointments. Please use the NEW form that was recently revised. You can download the new one here as a fillable pdf or here as a fillable MS Word document..
 
The Beginning Pastors' Workshop July 17-18, 2015
All pastors taking their first appointment in the Alabama-West Florida Conference are required to attend "The Beginning Pastors’ Workshop." This event will be held July 17-18, 2015, at Spring Hill College (Mobile, AL). Registration will open in the spring of 2015. For information about the event for 2015 visit http://www.awfumc.org/2015beginningpastorsworkshop or contact the Department of Ministerial Services at (334) 356-8014 or toll-free (888) 873-3127 or visit the AWF Conference website, http://AWFUMC.org.
 
The AWF Conference Group Candidacy Retreat July 17-18, 2015
 
The Alabama-West Florida Conference Board of Ordained Ministry will hold a Group Candidacy Retreat July 17-18, 2015, at Camp Beckwith in Fairhope, AL.  Click here for details. For more information please contact Erika Glawson at the AWF Conference Office of Ministerial Services at erika@awfumc.org or 334-356-8014 or toll-free number 888-873-3127. To attend the Candidacy Retreat candidates must complete these items before June 1, 2015.
 
Meeting of the Pensacola District Committee on Ministry August 18, 2015
This meeting is for recommendation for provisional status and Certified Candidates (first time and recertification). The Committee gathers at 9 a.m., scheduled interviews begin 9:30 a.m. Scheduling of the District Committee meetings and interviews is done through Rev. Bob Bailey, Chairperson.  This meeting will be held at the Dennison Administration Building of Gadsden Street United Methodist Church, 901 East Gadsden Street, Pensacola, FL.    
 
Moving Dates and Guidelines
Here are important dates for 2015-2016 clergy appointments:
June 21, 2015 - Last Sunday of current appointment
June 23, 2015 - Moving day
June 28, 2015 - Transition Sunday
July 1, 2015 - Effective date for 2015-2016 appointments
July 5, 2015 - First Sunday with new congregation
 
Current appointment is responsible for June pay.  Receiving congregation is responsible for July pay and for first $3,000 of documented moving expenses. See Standing Rules in Journal for details.  For more information about Moving Dates and Guidelines visit http://www.awfumc.org/appointmentsandmoving.
 
For information about commissioning and ordination, packet deadlines, etc. visit http://www.awfumc.org/commissioningandordination.
 
Important information for newly-appointed clergy is at http://umcpensacoladistrict.org/RightStart.
 
New Clergy Compensation Form  <-- Please no longer use the older form     
In April 2015 the Pastor Compensation Report Form was revised.  Please no longer use the old form. 
You can download the new one here as a fillable pdf or here as a fillable MS Word document.
 
Recommended Minimum Base Compensation for Ministers
According to the 2015 Brochure of Reports, page 151, the Commission on Equitable Compensation recommends a minimum salary of $36,500 for all full-time appointed clergy for 2016.
 
According to the 2014 Brochure of Reports, page 117, the Commission on Equitable Compensation recommends a minimum salary of $35,000 for all full-time appointed clergy for 2015.
                                                          

 
Around the Conference   
 
 
Top News Links:
For more, please scroll down the page.
 
Pensacola Flood Recovery Volunteers Needed!
The Florida Recovery Team of the AWF Conference is looking for volunteers during the summer months for the following type of jobs: sheetrock repairs, flooring, install cabinets, trim & door installation. Accepting weeklong teams as well as weekend volunteers. If interested please contact Volunteer Coordinator, Kj Chafen, at 850-736-7077 or kj.flrecovery@gmail.com. (Posted 5/12/2015)
 
 
Reservations Required for June 2 Luncheons
Spiritual Formation Luncheon
The Spiritual Formation Luncheon will be held at noon on Tuesday, June 2, room 7207/7209, at Frazer Memorial UMC, Montgomery. Guest speaker will be Rev. Cory Smith. RSVP to Patti Bodenhamer at pattibodenhamer@gmail.com or text 251-952-2175. Reservations will be accepted until 5 p.m. CT June 1, 2015.
 
Duke Club Luncheon
The Duke Club Luncheon will be held at noon on Tuesday, June 2, room 6102, at Frazer Memorial UMC, Montgomery. Advanced reservations are required by May 28.  Lunch will cost $10 each. To place reservations visit http://divinity.duke.edu/20150602AWFLConf.
 
AWF Appointive Cabinet Progress
April 17, 2015
 
Bishop Paul L. Leeland and the Appointive Cabinet express gratitude for those who have been praying for their work as they assign pastors to new appointments.
 
The Cabinet has completed their work on the 2015-2016 appointments. Only clergy and Staff/Pastor-Parish Relations Committees, where new appointments have been made, will begin receiving notifications from their District Superintendents beginning Monday, April 20, 2015, at 8:00am.
 
Please be respectful of every congregation and pastor receiving a change in appointment and do not share your new appointment information via phone call, text, or any social media until after your new SPR committee chairperson has contacted you.
 
We continue to invite all to pray for our congregations and pastors who will be experiencing changes in appointments of pastoral leadership.  
 
Subscribe Here to the AWFC NewsCONNECTION
Special Meals at Annual Conference
If you need to sign up for a special breakfast or lunch during conference, please contact your group directly.  Listed below are the groups:
 
Group
Contact
E-mail
Asbury Foundation Breakfast
Jen Hoppenjan
hopnjen@gmail.com
Asbury Club Lunch
Lisa Ausley
lausley@stmarkcrestview.com
Candler Club Lunch
Steve Reneau
rsreneau@gmail.com
Christian Educators Fellowship
Paula Roane
children@trinityfwb.org
Wesley Heirs
Ed Sells
edbet58@gmail.com
COSROW
Ruth Ann Powers
rall@ctvea.net
Deacons Breakfast
Emily Kincaid
emily.d.kincaid@gmail.com
Birmingham Southern
Jennifer Lancaster
jlancast@bsc.edu
Duke Club Meal
Gillian Walters
gwalters@fumcmontgomery.org
Spiritual Formation
Kathy Norberg
kathy.norberg@gmail.com
Educational Opportunities Joe Bullington gosbull@att.net
 
 
 
 
Bishop Announces New Superintendent and Conference Staff Positions
March 15, 2015 (Article here)
 
(Montgomery, AL) – Bishop Paul L. Leeland is pleased to announce two new district superintendents to the Alabama-West Florida Conference appointive cabinet. Rev. June Jernigan and Dr. Tim Trent will begin their new appointments as superintendents starting July 1, 2015.
 
Rev. June Jernigan will serve as District Superintendent for the Baypines District and currently serves as the Assistant to the Bishop and Director of Ministerial Services. Before serving in the conference office, she served as senior pastor of Millbrook FUMC and executive pastor of Gulf Breeze UMC. Jernigan was ordained an elder in the AWF Conference in 2004. She is a graduate of Samford University and received her seminary degree from Southern Seminary in Louisville, KY. She completed a Clinical Pastoral Education Residency at Methodist Medical Center and a Pastoral Counseling Residency at the Pastoral Counseling and Education Center, both in Dallas, TX, and is a certified coach with Passion in Partnership ministry. June has one adult child, Jonathan.
 
Dr. Tim Trent will serve as the District Superintendent for the Pensacola District and currently serves as senior pastor of Andalusia FUMC. His previous appointments include Whitfield Memorial UMC in Montgomery, AL, Associate Director of the Conference Council on Ministries, Heritage UMC in Enterprise, AL, Atmore FUMC, Ferry Pass UMC, Gonzalez UMC, Dothan FUMC, Skipperville UMC, Midland City UMC and Post Oak UMC. He is a graduate of Troy State University and received his seminary degree from Candler School of Theology at Emory University. Dr. Trent and his wife, Linda, have three children and five grandchildren.
 
Dr. Jeremy Pridgeon, current Pensacola District Superintendent and Dean of the Cabinet, will be appointed as Assistant to the Bishop and Director of Ministerial Services. He has been in his current appointment since 2010 and previously served Wetumpka FUMC, Montgomery FUMC and the Seale/Alexandria charge. He and his wife, Abigail, have two children, Alexis and Addison.
 
Dr. Cory Smith, current Baypines District Superintendent, will be appointed as the Director of Connectional Ministries, following the retirement of Rev. Neil McDavid. Smith has served as the Baypines District Superintendent since 2011 and previously served Woodland UMC in Montgomery, AL, and Epworth UMC in Phenix City, AL. He is married to the former Alicia Sellars and together they have one daughter, Sarah.
 
Bishop Leeland stated, “It is an honor to welcome June and Tim to the appointive cabinet. Both have shown tremendous leadership in our conference and will be outstanding assets to our ministry team. We give thanks for the ministry of Rev. Neil McDavid and his 48 years of service to this conference. I know you will join me in extending your thanks to him for his dedication to this calling. I am excited to welcome Jeremy and Cory to the conference staff and look forward to their continued fruitful and effective leadership for the conference.”
 
Andalusia FUMC will receive a new appointment in the coming weeks. For more information about the Alabama-West Florida Conference, please visit www.awfumc.org.   
 
The Alabama-West Florida Conference NewsCONNECTION February 16, 2015
Click here to view. Included in this edition:
 
Launch of The Antioch Project
The Antioch Project, under the leadership of Rev. Dan Pezet, was launched on Saturday, January 31, 2015, at Frazer Memorial UMC....  The Antioch Project is a new initiative from the Office of Congregational Vitality designed to partner with local churches that have potential to grow in several areas of ministry. Churches who are invited to participate in the Antioch Project have demonstrated good pastoral leadership, good lay leadership, and potential resources to jump start a new life cycle of ministry fruitfulness. The Antioch Project is comprised of a group of churches each year that have been recommended by the cabinet as meeting specific criteria, and then are prayerfully selected and invited by the Bishop to participate. For congregations that sign the Antioch Project covenant, a 2-3 year process is launched. Click here to learn more about the Antioch Project or click here to see the photo gallery.
 
AWFC Board of Advocacy Seeks Input
(Charlotte Van Erman) - How accessible is your church for people with disabilities and special needs? There are many ways that your church can say “you are welcome here,” and that is not just limited to reducing the physical barriers on a church campus. The Disability Concerns division of the Conference Board of Advocacy is very interested in learning how accessible our churches are. This information will help us determine what additional steps we need to take to provide additional resources and tools in order to help churches become more accessible and inclusive. We understand that many churches do not have the financial resources to make major upgrades to their facilities – including my own church, New Life UMC in Mobile. However, we can begin to take steps to help some churches in making needed changes. Click here to complete a brief survey in English, click here to complete the survey in Spanish

Measuring What Matters:  A Commentary about Metrics and Mission
(Bishop Ken Carter/Lewis Center) - "There is currently a lively conversation underway in the mainline church about numbers and metrics. This conversation is often dominated by two extreme and less-than-helpful perspectives. One seeks to quantify everything. In its most pronounced expression, this is the ascendency of the M.B.A. into every other professional guild, including ministry. The second perspective is an overreaction to the first. It insists that metrics should be ignored in favor of higher values — persons, or communities, or contexts." Full commentary here.
  
Moving Dates and Guidelines
Here are important dates for 2015-2016 clergy appointments:
June 21, 2015 - Last Sunday of current appointment
June 23, 2015 - Moving day
June 28, 2015 - Transition Sunday
July 1, 2015 - Effective date for 2015-2016 appointments
July 5, 2015 - First Sunday with new congregation
 
Current appointment is responsible for June pay.  Receiving congregation is responsible for July pay and for first $3,000 of documented moving expenses. See Standing Rules in Journal for details.
 
For more information about Moving Dates and Guidelines visit http://www.awfumc.org/appointmentsandmoving. 

The AWF Conference Group Candidacy Retreat July 2015
 
The Alabama-West Florida Conference Board of Ordained Ministry will hold a Group Candidacy Retreat July 17-18, 2015, at Camp Beckwith in Fairhope, AL.  Click here for details. For more information please contact Erika Glawson at the AWF Conference Office of Ministerial Services at erika@awfumc.org or 334-356-8014 or toll-free number 888-873-3127.
 
Continuing Education Chair
Rev. Dr. Geoffrey Lentz is now 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 stuartworth@gmail.com.
 
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
      
 
Flood Disaster Response Update - Rio Texas Conference
The Rio Texas Conference has extended an invitation to certified ERT teams from other conferences to assist with their disaster response efforts. Teams should register at http://riotexas.org/flood-updates. Teams will then be contacted by the Rio Texas ERT Coordinator.  Please pray for those affected by the recent and continuing flooding in Texas and Oklahoma, and for all those responding.
 
Includes the topics "Concluding Ministry in One Setting" and "Beginning Ministry in a New Setting."
From the Lewis Center:  "8 Reasons People Aren't Listening to Announcements"Rich Birch

(Rich Burch) - This weekend, all across the country, leaders are going to get up in front of their churches and talk about upcoming events and opportunities to connect with the community. They want to move people to action, but in reality a large portion of those in the room will simply tune out for that part of the service and then tune back in when something more interesting comes along. You know it’s true … because you’ve done it!

We blame the people for not engaging in the mission. Sort of like a shepherd blaming the sheep for not going to the right pasture. We need to understand why people stop listening and then shift our behavior to help them connect with those we seek to serve. Here are eight reasons people aren’t listening to announcements.  CONTINUE article here. >>     

 
  

Abundance Orchard Vacation Bible School Cover

Free Vacation Bible School Materials from the Society of St. Andrew
Click here for details.  Feed the Hungry with Society of St. Andrew this Summer, and Support SoSA through Your VBS Mission Offerings. Each VBS program is a stand-alone, all-in-one hunger-action themed Vacation Bible School. Materials are included to plan for 2-3 hours daily for up to 5 days.
Each program contains VBS planning helps, backdrops, scenery, and mascot ideas, Bible study & preparation materials for teachers, daily Bible story & memory verse, storytelling, arts & crafts, music, recreation, and snacks.  Missions component contains 5 full-color mission photos & stories, mission offering info & instructions, 10 optional mission activities, and reproducibles (Society of St. Andrew flyer and Society of St. Andrew picture story).  Order ONE COPY for your congregation. Resources may be photocopied.  Order ONE COIN BOX for each participating family.  Cost: FREE
 
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.
 
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 www.churchleadership.com/leadingideas.
 
12 Ways to Stay Connected with College Students
United Methodist Communications has an article on this topic at http://www.umcom.org/learn/12-ways-to-stay-connected-with-college-students.  Tips include things you can do before the students leave, while they are at college, and when they come home.         
 
 
Beginning on Jan. 1, 2015, the IRS standard mileage rates for the use of a car, van, pickup or panel truck will be as follows:
  • 57.5 cents per mile for business miles driven, up from 56 cents in 2014
  • 23 cents per mile driven for medical or moving purposes, down half a cent from 2014 
  • 14 cents per mile driven in service of charitable organizations
 
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  

 
Resources for Clergy and Congregations
Resources for building, improving, and strengthening ministry are available at http://www.churchleadership.com. Here are sample "50 Ways to --" pdfs from ChurchLeadership.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   
  
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! 
 
Please Consider Ways to Support the Fountain of Love Offering
March 22, 2015
 
(Dr. Jeremy Pridgeon) - Like so many of you, at least once each week I receive correspondence from an organization seeking support for a ministry. And while these entities are involved in worthwhile initiatives, often they are not part of our United Methodist connection. I say this to simply remind us that we are part of a great Church that is making a significant impact in so many areas around the world. And I write to you this week to highlight my own experience with one of the institutions that is most deserving of our support.
 

During my years as a local church pastor, the congregations I have served have been faithful supporters of the "Fountain of Love" Offering that benefits the Methodist Homes for the Aged. While I have visited church members who were residents of our homes in various parts of the annual conference, this ministry has become very personal as my own grandmother, my Nana, is now a resident at the Mathison Retirement Center in Panama City. Nana's health is declining, she is experiencing dementia and battling congestive heart failure. It has progressed more rapidly than we could have anticipated. But our family could not be more appreciative and grateful for the caring staff at Mathison that has seen to her needs and has been a help to our family in this transition for her and for all of us who love her.

 I write this to you this week because you may have a mother, father, grandmother, grandfather, a brother, sister, friend, or church member that is at a place in their life's journey where they need additional care to ensure their safety and well-being. Our Methodist Homes for the Aged are excellent places to minister to God's older children who are in the later years of life. At the same time, our Methodist Homes need your support, as well as the support of your congregation. This week, I will be sending to your churches the information you need for your congregation to take part in the "Fountain of Love" Offering and I do hope you will receive this offering to help our homes continue to fulfill their mission throughout the state of Alabama and Northwest Florida. Additionally, I will be sending you the "Minister's Tool Kit" with information that will be of benefit to you as pastor as you work with church members and families who are making decisions about the care needs they have going forward.
 
I would encourage you to reach out to Chris Tomlin, CEO of Methodist Homes, and his fine staff. I know they stand ready to serve you and assist with any needs you may have as it relates to care for the aged. I am thankful for this ministry of our church and am personally seeing the critical need it meets as our family journeys with my grandmother during this part of her life. Please consider ways you can engage your congregation in support of their great work taking place in both the North Alabama and Alabama-West Florida Conferences.   
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