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helps congregations make disciples
We are living as watched persons in a skeptical
society," the Rev. Dan Benedict said. "We need to get away from vampire
evangelism: getting more members to suck the life out of them. That is a process motivated
by fear. This is precisely the wrong time to be motivated by fear."
Benedict is worship resources director for the denomination's
General Board of Discipleship and taught the "Making Disciples for the New
Millennium" workshop Nov. 3-6 in Bradenton. The training event was coordinated by the
conference's Spiritual Formation office to help church members learn how to make disciples
for Jesus Christ and introduce them to the process of Christian initiation. Full Story
|Church and Society awards 23
More than $40,000 was awarded last month to
23 Florida Conference churches and church-related ministries involved in service to
"the powerless, voiceless and sometimes forgotten members of society," according
to Carol Sue Hutchinson, director of the Conference Council on Ministries Discipleship and
Church and Society offices.
The grants were given by the Church and Society ministry team and
funded by the team's annual budget and the Peace with Justice Special Sunday offerings.
|Weekend in prison is
revival for DS
"Jesus Christ sent us to visit the prisoners," said Lakeland District
superintendent Rev. Aldo Martin. "He said, 'when you do, you visited me.' For these
people, he died on the cross. Every Christian, once in their life, ought to visit a person
Martin was among 35 men who spent 96 hours at the Polk
Correctional Institution in Polk County last October visiting prisoners and sharing the
Gospel of Jesus Christ with them as part of a Kairos spiritual retreat.
"I give thanks to God," he said. "It renewed my
faith and my confidence in the power of God to change people.
serves as minister to Hispanics
Reyes Martinez spends five nights a week leading worship and Bible study for
the Hispanic congregation at Parrish United Methodist Church and provides pastoral care
for the more than 125 members. He also works full time as a boat refinisher.
Martinez is a local church lay speaker on his way to becoming
certified. And although he is not ordained, Martinez is closer to the original Methodist
model for ministry than today's professional model, according to the Rev. Bill Payne,
pastor of the church. Full
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