The Pensacola District of The United Methodist Church
Thursday, March 22, 2018
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The Right Start


Anticipating a new clergy appointment? 
Here are some items to help you navigate smoothly through transition and keep connected!
1. Read and follow the "Pastoral Transitions Guidelines."
To see if there is a an updated version you can search here at
2. Get informed.
Even before you move, start browsing the district's website regularly. Chances are, by the time you've moved into your new appointment some important announcements have already been posted.  If you browse in depth you may find many helpful resources that you otherwise might not have known are available!
3. Get in the loop, keep in the loop.
  • To subscribe to Alabama-West Florida Conference e-news continue here.
  • To subscribe to Pensacola District e-news continue here. 
  • Set your e-mail system to like us and accept our e-mails.
  • As soon as you know what your e-mail address will be for your new appointment, inform the district office. 
  • If your e-mail address changes, please inform the district office as soon as possible so that we can update our records.
  • If you are subscribed but the messages are not reaching you, please check your spam folder. 
  • If you stop receiving our e-news messages, please inform the district office as soon as possible so that you can continue to receive important announcements. If you no longer receive the messages due to a change in e-mail address, the district office can update your subscription for you or you can do so yourself by clicking on the link provided on e-news messages.
  • Make sure your secretary's contact information is in the AWF Conference database and that he/she receives our weekly e-mails.
4. Prepare your calendar.
Note pastoral transition dates on your calendar.
The AWF Conference Cabinet has set the following schedule to encourage a smooth and healthy pastoral transition. Variation from this schedule must be coordinated between the pastor, the S/PPRC chairpersons, and the sending and receiving superintendents.
Here is the schedule for 2017-2018 clergy appointments: 
Beginning April 17, 2017, pastors and churches are free to make announcements about pastoral moves in bulletins and newsletters and on Websites and social media.
May 11, 2017 - The Right Start Workshop
June 18, 2017 - Last Sunday in the current appointment
June 20, 2017 - Moving day
July 9, 2017 - First Sunday in the new appointment
Note dates and details about required workshops. 
See point 5 below.
Put your new district's events on your calendar.
You'll be meeting with your new church - planning ministry and setting calendar dates - so have district events already on your calendar.  Be looking for announcements on the district website about the Pensacola District Welcoming Gathering in the fall, the Pensacola District Conference and Youth FUSED Conference on the first Sunday of November at 4 p.m., and the District Clergy & Spouse Christmas Dinner usually held on the first Tuesday in December.
5.  Attend the required workshops.
The Right Start Workshop
The Right Start workshop is required for clergy receiving new pastoral appointments.  This training has been specifically designed to aid clergy as they complete ministry in their current setting and prepare to begin service in a new congregation. Continuing education credit (CEU) is available.
For more information about this event:
(2) browse the AWFC calendar; or
(3) contact Erika Glawson, Executive Assistant at the AWF Conference Office of Ministerial Services, at 334-356-8014, toll-free 888-873-3127, or                        
The Beginning Pastors Workshop
All pastors taking their first appointment in the AWF Conference are required to attend "The Beginning Pastors Workshop."
For more information about this event:
(2) browse the AWFC calendar; or
(3) contact Erika Glawson, Executive Assistant at the AWF Conference Office of Ministerial Services, at 334-356-8014, toll-free 888-873-3127, or        
The Alabama-West Florida Conference posts information about Licensing School at
Important dates for candidates/clergy are also posted at
6. Get a "snapshot" of your new congregation.
Review statistical data of your new congregation. This will help you get a snapshot before you arrive.  Pensacola District Churches can view their statistics on our About Us page and Connectional Giving page.
7. Give your new district office your new contact info as soon as possible - no later than June 25.
Please e-mail the district office your new contact info by June 25. The information you send will be used to update the AWF Conference database. Each year we distribute the district directory at the District Welcoming Dinner, so it is very important to meet this deadline.  Please copy this list, paste it into an e-mail, type in the answers, and send to  
Clergy full name
Clergy "goes by" name/nickname
Clergy preferred mailing address
Clergy home address
Clergy home phone number
Clergy cell phone number
Clergy office number
Clergy fax number
Clergy e-mail address
Clergy birth date
Marital status
Spouse's full name
Spouse's e-mail address
Spouse's birth date
Date of marriage
(E-mailing this to us - to put it in writing - is better than phoning it in, and the sooner the better, whatever you can send. Thank you!)
8. Send required forms.
  • Note "Pension Considerations When Moving to a New Appointment" (aka "Moving at Annual Conference Information") posted here at
  • Complete the Pension Forms (either apply or waiver) and send them in - the quicker the better.
  • VERY IMPORTANT!!  Send the district office your completed and signed Pastor Compensation Form by June 15 - the quicker the better. For direct billing purposes, clergy compensation forms need to be at the district office BEFORE June 17. If that is not possible, AWFC will have to bill based on the pastor’s current salary and make the adjustment on the next billing. If you have not already sent in your compensation form, please use the new form that was revised in April 2015. You can download it here as a fillable pdf or here as a fillable MS Word document.
  • VERY IMPORTANT!!  E-mail the district office your clergy contact information by June 25. This deadline is very important so that we can contact you as well as update the AWFC database, AWFC directory, and Pensacola District Directory and distribute the district directory at the District Welcoming Dinner.  For a list of what information is needed please see the previous section of this page. 
  • Complete a Employment Eligibility Verification (I-9) Form and keep a copy at the church where you serve. According to the website of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), all U.S. employers must complete and retain a Form I-9 for each individual they hire for employment in the United States. This includes citizens and noncitizens. We are advising all pastors under appointment to complete the I-9, but do not mail it to the district office. Keep a copy at the church where you serve. More information and the form are at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) website.
9. Consider helpful resources.
10. If you need a password contact the district office.
Each year, there are online reports that are due January 31. If you need a user name and password please contact the district office. More information about the reports is at
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