The Gift of Technology ... Creating Relationships and Doing God’s Will
“And we know that in all things God works for the good
of those who love Him, who have been called
according to His purpose” Romans 8:28 (NIV)
On Tuesday, I logged onto my computer at 9:00 AM to join the board meeting for The Moscow United Methodist Seminary. We spanned multiple time zones to be together and we could feel the Holy Spirit’s presence. At one point in our meeting, one of the current students, Oleg, was asked to share his testimony about the impact of the seminary on his life. After going through rehab for addiction and meeting Jesus in the midst of his illness, Oleg felt the stirring of the Holy Spirit to ordained ministry. Trying to escape the call, Oleg said, “My wife joined God in pushing me to seminary!” Oleg shared how “God acted in miraculous ways” during his seminary time ... growing him deeper in his faith and broadening his horizon. He finished saying, “and it’s just the beginning!”
As I thought about my board meeting and Oleg’s story and all the controversy of our US/Russia relationship, I found great hope and joy that God is at work everywhere and in all circumstances. Whether it is during this COVID-19 season, in the midst of political strife and turmoil, in our economy, in the personal and cultural journey toward anti-racism, in our families through the ups and downs, and certainly in our local churches, God is moving. Do you see God’s handiwork ... how the Holy Spirit is taking everything – the good, the bad, and the very ugly – and working something new and beautiful? Every day I try to recognize how and where God is at work to ease my worry and concern.
Please note two important events coming soon: Annual Charge Conference (find your date and time out from your church office), and District Training, “Pathway to Life in Christ!” Saturday, November 14 from 9:00 AM – 12:00 noon. Both events will be virtual which allows us to be safe and welcome many people into our conversations. Please be sure to read Bishop Sharma D. Lewis of the Virginia Annual Conference’s story below so when you hear my conversation with her at your charge conference, you will know her already!
Our District Training, “Pathway to Life in Christ,” will be about building a clear and concise journey with distinct steps to becoming more and more like Jesus. John Wesley designed a sanctification system of societies, classes and bands. Most of our churches offer a menu of discipleship opportunities but lack a process. On November 14, you and others from your church will have the gift of building the process! I’m excited to see what God will do. Look for the promotional video soon with registration information.
As God continues to work in and through our circumstances – close by and far away in the corners of Russia, please know that, at 8:20 AM every morning, I am lifting our district churches in prayer. Please join me in that effort! May God bless you, and I look forward to seeing you soon!
Grace and peace ~
During the month of October and November, churches in the Atlantic Central District will be holding their Charge Conferences. If you would like to attend the Charge Conference for your church, please contact your church office for their date and time and receive information on how to register.
During Charge Conferences, we will be viewing a conversation between Bishop Sharma Lewis and Rev. Dionne C Hammond, District Superintendent on Racism and Clergy Care.
Bishop Sharma Lewis long expected to be known as “Doctor” — not “the Reverend” and certainly not “Bishop.” However, after she landed on the waiting list for medical school, a beloved aunt suggested God might have other plans for the biology major. “She challenged me,” Lewis recalled of her conversation with the late Rev. Essie C. Simmons. “She said, ‘I feel like God has a call on your life.’”
To learn more about Bishop Lewis, click here to read more of the article on umnews.org.
Say "Thank You" to your pastor this month!
In Timothy 1 (5:17), Paul began the concept of clergy appreciation when he stated that the elders of the church are worthy of double honor. He reiterated this idea in Thessalonians 1 (5: 12-13) when he stated that those who work hard among you should be held in the highest regard for their work. This idea became Clergy Appreciation Month in 1992, established by pastors and religious workers.
We are excited about the upcoming Leadership Training Event and Workshop, "Pathway to Life in Christ." Our Atlantic Central District Churches are invited and encouraged to participate in this event. The event will be held:
Saturday, November 14, 2020
9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon
Teams will meet at their church and join the Zoom session
(Masks and Social Distancing Required)
One registration per church
Registration link will be sent to Clergy and Administrative Assistants
Christin Nevins, Spiritual-Leadership, Inc. will be leading the workshop. Christin is an Adaptive Leadership Coach working with Spiritual Leadership, Inc. (SLI) based out of Lexington, KY. She has been coaching executive leaders, leading teams through organizational change, conflict reconciliation, strategic planning, and facilitating groups in corporate and not-for-profit settings for over 20 year.
For additional information and details about this event, please visit the AC District webpage at https://www.flumc.org/ac-events-and-trainings.
On Tuesday, November 17 at 6:30 PM, Rev. Dionne C. Hammond, District Superintendent, will lead our District Staff Parish training. This is mandatory training for our local church SPRC Chairs and the team. Include those who will be joining the team on January 1, 2021. Please add this date and time to your calendar. Details about this training will be posted next week on the AC District webpage at https://www.flumc.org/ac-events-and-trainings
The training will include: Essential Leadership Functions and Duties for the SPRC Chair and Team.
Please register for this Zoom training at the link here: https://florida-reg.brtapp.com/ACDistrictStaffParishTraining