News & Views

The Florida Conference is dedicated to bringing you news stories about United Methodists here and beyond. Whether the news is about the global church or the church on the corner, look for it here. You’ll also find thought-provoking commentaries and opportunities for education and fellowship.

In addition, News & Views is pleased to bring you an interactive Bible crossword puzzle, with new puzzles available weekly. Click here to access current and past puzzles. Have a story to share? Email webadmin@flumc.org or click here to use our convenient “Submit a story” form.

Image courtesy of www.ChristianBibleReference.org. Copyright © by Cliff Leitch.

November 16, 2016

East Angola villagers fighting to survive malaria

The husband-wife team of Rev. Armando and Icel Rodgriquez have turned a one-time visit to East Angola into an annual mission. Today, medicine and supplies are giving villagers of Quessua a chance to survive.

November 15, 2016

Bikers, pastors and MAD DADS walk together

During 2016, homicides have set a record pace in Jacksonville, Fla. From prayer vigils at murder scenes to motorcycle rides, a church and local activists from a group called MAD DADS are doing something about it.

November 11, 2016

Mission Honduras: Security a top priority

It has been nearly 15 years since the General Board of Global Ministries deemed Mission Honduras an official initiative of The United Methodist Church. With one of the highest murder rates in the world, security has become a top priority.

November 11, 2016

Missions to Honduras an uphill battle for Cuban nationals

She and her late husband once served as missionaries to Honduras in the late 1990's, helping the country recover from Hurricane Mitch. Now in her 70's, Elina Iglesias wants to return. The challenge is that she is a Cuban national. The Honduran government will not allow her to travel there.

November 10, 2016

The leadership of laughter

Less talk and more joy. Less explanation and more playfulness. Less selling and promoting and more embodying and expressing the sheer wonder and joy of our faith. This is what ministry is meant to be like, grounded in the laughter of God, a seminary professor says in this ordination sermon.

November 10, 2016

Third Day: 'I Need A Miracle'

Enjoy a music video by Third Day performing "I Need A Miracle."

November 04, 2016

Churches give big salute to Veterans Day

Members of Palm Harbor UMC recently visited the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier to lay a wreath and honor all who have served. For many conference churches, Veterans Day is a day for recognition and thanks; especially to those men and women we have lost, and the families who supported them.

November 03, 2016

'Yesternite' by Gungor

Gungor performs "Yesternite" from their latest album "I Am Mountain" live for Relevant Magazine.

November 02, 2016

A year in God's time

The first in a series of blog posts by Miranda Harrison-Quillin, invited by the Archbishop of Canterbury to join a monastic community in London for 10 months. She will share her insights, experiences and reflections about her new life.

October 28, 2016

Cuban Bishop talks of Covenant changing lives

Bishop Ricardo Pereira of Cuba recently sat down for an interview in Lakeland. With candor and grace, he talks about Methodism in Cuba, sister churches and the challenge to rebuild following Hurricane Matthew.

October 28, 2016

Youth brings clean water to Guatemalan village

Logan Franks, a 16-year-old girl from Jacksonville, made it her mission to bring clean drinking water to the village of Chisec in Guatemala. She started a Go-Fund-Me page, held fundraisers and found a Guatemalan based supplier for the water filters.

October 27, 2016

'Truly Today' by Liz Vice

KEXP @Pickathon presents Liz Vice performing "Truly Today" live on the Logging Road at Pickathon. (Recorded on July 31, 2015.)

October 25, 2016

Student interns consider pastoral life

They are asked to preach, attend church meetings, visit the sick and participate in worldwide missions. Ten students recently participated in unique internships to consider pastoral careers.

October 21, 2016

Engineering a future with clean water

A curious mission team member in a remote Cuban village learns that the tap water is unfit to drink, and providing people with clean water soon becomes the mission of a lifetime.

October 20, 2016

'Carbon Ribs' by John Mark McMillan

John Mark McMillan performs "Carbon Ribs" from the album "The Medicine" live from the Relevant studio.

October 18, 2016

Tallahassee church unites art and soul

Good Samaritan UMC incorporated the arts into its church mission. Today, the thriving program has 150 students and 14 instructors leading the way for many with special needs.

October 16, 2016

What I learned at VBS this summer

A pastor charged with teaching a third grade VBS class realized she was learning not only from the children but with them, by openheartedly engaging in the activities meant for kids.

October 14, 2016

Posting with a purpose on social media

Members of Southside UMC of Jacksonville are sharing their "life of faith with the world" on social media by posting, tweeting and liking. It's all part of a national event being called Social Media Sunday.

October 13, 2016

'More Heart, Less Attack' by NeedToBreathe

The band performs live at KBR Farm in 2014.

October 11, 2016

Commentary: Truly welcoming churches create inclusivity

A funny thing happens when people start simply being kind and welcoming to one another. They get to know each other. They gradually come to understand that the one who is different from them also loves Jesus and is doing the best that they can with what they have.

October 11, 2016

Conference responds to Matthew's impact on Haiti

Both UMCOR and UMVIM recommend volunteers to be patient until further communication is established with the Methodist Church in Haiti and the Circuit Superintendents of the affected areas.

October 06, 2016

Casting Crowns: 'Father, Spirit, Jesus'

Casting Crowns performs "Father, Spirit, Jesus" on the Lifesong Live DVD/CD.

October 06, 2016

October is Pastor Appreciation Month

In honor of dedicated clergy, we asked several ministers to share some of the ways church members had made them feel valued and found that for congregants and clergy alike, simple acts of caring help build a connection beyond the pulpit.

October 04, 2016

Churches discover time capsules and hidden messages

A Hyde Park UMC renovation leads to hidden prayers, while FUMC of Lake Wales finds a surprise discovery of two time capsules -- one dated back to the 1940's.

October 03, 2016

McKinley eager to do 'good soul tending work'

Florida Bishop Ken Carter announced in March the appointment of Rev. Sara McKinley as new director of the Office of Clergy Excellence. McKinley talks of exploring new mindsets of young clergy and those considering a call to ministry.

September 30, 2016

Laity Sunday 2016 emphasizes vital worship

Resources are available from United Methodist Discipleship Ministries, including posters, social media graphics and more.

September 29, 2016

'Silence' by Jars of Clay

Jars of Clay's last song of the Box Canyon night concert in Texas was 'Silence."

September 28, 2016

Missions are investment in youth

From working in soup kitchens to building houses and planting community gardens, young people from across the conference are actively serving area missions.

September 27, 2016

World Communion Sunday is Oct. 2

On World Communion Sunday your giving helps to provide scholarships for national and international graduate students whom God has gifted to learn and to serve. Links to resources are available.

September 26, 2016

Conference churches tackle hunger through food pantries

One in eight people worldwide does not have enough food. Florida Conference churches are responding with local food pantries.

September 21, 2016

Bishop Carter leads town hall in Gainesville

Bishop Carter answers questions at a Trinity UMC town hall meeting in Gainesville, stating it's time for every Methodist to become a bridge builder.

September 21, 2016

Campaign for Africa University launched

The Campaign for Africa University, a four-year effort to raise $50 million, was unveiled at a banquet celebrating the work of longtime supporter and board member Maggie Jackson, who is retiring from the board.

September 20, 2016

'One Thing' by Housefires

Housefires (featuring Kirby Kaple) perform their song "One Thing" for a live audience.

September 15, 2016

The Digital Age: 'Blessed Assurance'

This music video is a practice session of The Digital Age playing "Blessed Assurance" at their studio in Waco, Texas.

September 14, 2016

Photos from 'Flood Bucket Challenge' drop off

It began with a challenge from one church to another. FUMC of Lakeland challenged Hyde Park UMC in Tampa to fill buckets of cleaning supplies to be delivered to flood victims across 28 Louisiana parishes.

September 12, 2016

Churches and schools partnering to work with at-risk kids

Temple Terrace UMC, following its mission as an instrument of hope in the community, is working with students at Kimbell Elementary in Tampa - a school reported to have challenges extending beyond the classroom.

September 08, 2016

'I Am Mountain' by Gungor

Gungor performed the title song from their album "I Am Mountain" live for Relevant Magazine.

September 08, 2016

Revival, history themes for AC 2017, 2018

Described by Sharon Austin, director of Connectional Ministries, as an important time of gathering and fellowship, the 2017 Annual Conference returns to Orlando, and the 2018 Annual Conference returns to Florida Southern College in Lakeland.

September 06, 2016

Mission workshops aim to ignite ministries

The upcoming Mission: Ignite and Engage, will offer Florida Conference leadership a unique opportunity through workshops and chat rooms - to discover new ways to engage with their communities.

September 02, 2016

Gator Wesley gets new leadership from seasoned husband-and-wife team

Respected leaders for young adults, Joel and Heather Pancoast are taking on a new challenge at the Gator Wesley Foundation, serving college students at a pivotal time in their lives.

September 01, 2016

'I Am' by David Crowder

David Crowder performs "I Am" in a lyric video.

August 31, 2016

Recipes for Labor Day and end of summer celebrations

For many of us, Labor Day is the final break before a long stretch of work and school before the ...

August 29, 2016

Bishop Carter to hold town hall meetings in September

Bishop Carter extends an invitation to September town hall meetings to be held in Gainesville, Orlando, Ft. Lauderdale and Grace, Cape Coral.

August 25, 2016

Opportunities to help Louisiana flood victims

Florida churches are invited to help flood victims with special offering this Sunday and providing cleaning buckets.

August 25, 2016

Young Oceans: 'Great is Our God'

Music video by Young Oceans performing Plumb's "Great is Our God."

August 19, 2016

Missions profoundly affect team members' spiritual walks

As mission workers from three Florida United Methodist churches discovered recently, the act of helping others had a profound effect on their own spiritual walks—no matter their age. They brought home mental snapshots of life-changing events.

August 18, 2016

'Amazing Grace' by Palma Ceia praise band

We all know the song "Amazing Grace." Check out the way Palma Ceia's praise band captures the soul of the song.

August 17, 2016

2017 apportionments available

The apportionments for 2017 are now available on the conference website. Please contact your district office first if you have any questions regarding your 2017 apportionments.

August 17, 2016

Dear families of the Orlando community...

Expressions of love, sympathy and support came from as far away as Oakland, Calif., and Lexington, Ky.

August 12, 2016

Methodist ministries help homeless combat Zika virus

While vacationers are warned to stay away from Florida and residents are urged to stay indoors, Florida’s homeless population has little recourse for escaping the Zika virus threat.

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