The Pensacola District of The United Methodist Church
Monday, February 20, 2017
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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. Attend the required workshop(s).
The Right Start Event

All clergy receiving new pastoral appointments are required to attend The Right Start, an event that has been specifically designed to aid clergy as they complete ministry in their current setting and prepare to begin service in a new congregation. The Right Start for 2016 (.5 CEU) was April 19 at Aldersgate United Methodist Church in Montgomery, AL.  For more information about this event contact Erika Glawson at the Alabama-West Florida Conference Office of Ministerial Services: 334-356-8014, toll-free 888-873-3127, or The event page for 2016 was here.

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 Department of Ministerial Services at (334) 356-8014 or toll-free (888) 873-3127.
For Licensing School and other important dates visit
2. Get informed, keep 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 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.
4. Prepare your calendar.
First, note AWF Conference clergy moving dates on your calendar
June 19, 2016 - Last Sunday at current appointment for pastors moving or retiring.
June 21, 2016 - Moving Day (Continue here for specifics and a note about adjusting the date.) 
July 1, 2015 - Effective date for 2015-2016 appointments
Second, 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.  The district tries to keep annually recurring events as close to the previous year's date as possible. Keep tuned to event announcements in case dates/plans change. Typically, each year you can reserve the third Tuesday in July (6 p.m.) for the Pensacola District Welcoming Gathering, the first Sunday in November (4 p.m.) for the Pensacola District Conference and Youth FUSED Conference, and the first Tuesday in December for the District Clergy & Spouse Christmas Dinner (6 p.m.). Be on the look-out, however, for event announcements in case dates/plans change. Here are annually recurring dates for 2016:
July 19, 2016 @ 6 p.m. - District Clergy Welcoming Dinner. This event is for all Pensacola District clergy and their families. If you don't have a spouse, feel free to invite a guest. Reservations will be accepted July 1-12, 2016, at
November 6, 2016 @ 4 p.m. - District Conference at Navarre United Methodist Church. Churches are requested to reserve this afternoon so that all your church folks can attend.
November 6, 2016 @ 4 p.m. - District Fused Youth Conference at Community Life United Methodist Church, Gulf Breeze. Churches are requested to reserve this afternoon so that all youth and youth leaders can participate.
December 6, 2016 @ 6 p.m. - District Clergy & Spouses Christmas Dinner. Reservations will be accepted November 1, 2016, through noon on November 29, 2016. Please RSVP at There is no cost to attend. This is an adults-only event, no childcare provided.
5. Get in the loop, keep in the loop.
  • Once you know what your e-mail address will be for your new appointment, ask the district office to put you on the pastors' e-mail list (or subscribe here) or update your current subscription.
  • Set your e-mail system to like us and accept our e-mails.
  • If you stop receiving our weekly e-mails, inform the district office as soon as possible.
  • Make sure your secretary's contact information is in the AWF Conference database and that he/she receives our weekly e-mails.
6. Give your new district office your new contact info 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 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.  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!)
7. Send required forms.
  • See Memo to Moving Pastors from the AWF Conference Benefit Coordinator. (This is an old memo but nonetheless good to view.)
  • Complete the Pension Forms (either apply or waiver) and send them in - the quicker the better.
  • Send the district office your completed and signed Pastor Compensation Form before June 17 - 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.
  • 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.
8. Consider helpful resources. (Stay tuned for updates!)
 9. 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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