Greetings from the District Superintendent
| Dr. Bob Bushong
I was with someone today whose first language is Spanish, and she is learning English. She’s working hard at it, and the progress that she is making is amazing. I have a lot of respect for our bilingual pastors whose first language is Spanish or Creole or Korean.
Some language experts say that English is one of the more difficult languages to learn. Here are some examples of why that might be the case, taken from an article that I read on the subject:
- The bandage was wound around the wound.
- The farm was used to produce produce.
- The dump was so full that the manager had to refuse more refuse.
- He would be able to lead if only he would get the lead out.
- A bass was painted on the top of the bass drum.
- When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes.
- I didn’t object to the object.
- They were too close to the door to be able to close it.
- The buck does different things when the does are present.
- The wind was too strong for them to be able to wind the sail.
- The doctor had to subject the subject to a series of tests.
- How do I intimate this to my most intimate friend?
Furthermore, there’s certainly no egg in eggplant, and no ham in hamburger. Boxing rings are square, and if retired teachers taught, why don’t we say that retired preachers praught? Have you ever wondered, if a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat? And if the plural of tooth is teeth, why isn’t the plural of booth beeth?
So, what do you think? If your primary language is English, aren’t you glad that it isn’t another language and you have to learn English within a certain period of time?
Sometimes it hits me how much many of the words we use in the church are confusing. Who in the world would know, if they weren’t already on the inside of a church, what a narthex is, or a doxology, for that matter – not to mention words like “grace” or even “love.” After all, we talk about God’s love, using the same word when we say, “I love my family” or “I love pizza,” or “I love going to the beach.”
The truth is that words are symbols that point to something else. They point to an object or an experience or a feeling or a thought. It’s true of words used in the church. They are symbols – symbols of a way of life, symbols of a perspective, a worldview. I guess that’s why the author of James insisted that his hearers be “doers of the Word of God.” It’s not just reading or hearing or speaking the words that ultimately matters. It’s what those do to us and through and with us that really counts.
Grace and Peace,
East Central District
In the District
A Message from Kim & Melanie Lee, District Lay Leaders
Kim & Melanie Lee
We Are All One Body in Christ
Last month, I enjoyed my teacher’s schedule of having the summer off and traveled to Virginia to visit our daughters, sons-in law, and grandchildren. I started my journey in Leesburg to spend time with our oldest daughter, Stephanie, and her family, which includes our oldest grandson, just over a year old. I spent hours with Jasper doing his favorite activity, digging in the yard with a little yellow shovel. From there, I flew to NYC and met Kim and our youngest daughter, Miranda, and her family, which includes our youngest grandson, who had just turned 3 months. Kim returned to Orlando and the working world, while I traveled to Richmond by train to spend the rest of June with the baby.
While in Northern VA, Stephanie’s family and I took the metro to Washington, D.C., for the day. As we strolled along the National Mall, gazing at the Washington Monument at one end and the Lincoln Memorial at the other, people of all nationalities joined us in admiring the beauty of the day and the inspiration of the place. Through the trees, I could glimpse the White House. I kept thinking how proud I am to be an American. It’s hard to come to this city with our grand heritage displayed in strong, white marble and not take pride in the people for whom it stands. Click HERE to read entire article.
Loving the Laity,
Melanie & Kim Lee
2018 Annual Conference Highlights
Remembering Who We Are
About 1,600 Florida United Methodists, including 722 clergy and 798 lay voting members, gathered June 6-9 in Lakeland. Below are some quick links to highlights of AC2018:
Click HERE for the Lay Member Summary Report.
Click HERE for 2018 Annual Conference Videos
Click HERE for the AC2018 Website.
Click HERE to purchase a hard copy of the AC2018 Journal. The deadline is August 31st. Once it is completed it will be available to download at no cost.
Annual Conference Dates
June 5 - 8, 2019 Lakeland, FL
June 4 - 6, 2020 Location TBD
Congratulations to all the ECD Clergy who were Licensed, Commissioned and Ordained!
Rena Lewis - Nemours Children's Hospital
Nicole Logan - Montverde UMC
Patti Thue - First UMC, Winter Park
Frank Adams - New Horizon UMC, Haines City
Jim Berlau - Peace UMC, Orlando
Ivan Gonzalez, Jr - Spring of Life UMC, Associate Pastor
Chris Haden - First UMC, Eustis
Dora Thomas - Community UMC, DeBary
Eliantus Valmyr - Emmanuel Haitian, Orlando
David Averill - St. John's UMC, Winter Haven
Full Elder transfer from Korean UMC
Andrew Kim - Orlando Korean and St. Andrews UMC, Winter Park
Welcome our Clergy with new appointments July 1, 2018!
Asbury UMC, Maitland - Cameron Lashbrook
Barnett Memorial UMC, Enterprise - Mark Abbott
First UMC, Kissimmee - Jose Nieves
First UMC, Winter Park (Associate) - Patti Thue
Lake Helen UMC - Jeff Taylor
Lakeside Fellowship UMC, Sanford - Dan Wunderlich
Nemours Children's Hospital - Rena Lewis
Spring of Life UMC, Orlando (Senior Pastor) - Esther Rodriguez
Spring of Life UMC, Orlando (Associate) - Ivan Gonzalez
St. Andrew's UMC, Winter Park - Andrew Kim
St. Joseph's UMC, DeLand - John Williams
St. Luke's UMC, Orlando (Associate) - Melissa Cooper
Attention all clergy with new appointments in the ECD:
There is an orientation meeting for all clergy with new appointments in the East Central District on Tuesday, August 7th from 11:30am - 2:30am at the District Parsonage in Maitland. Click HERE to register to join us for lunch.
Safety and Security for Places of Worship Part II
August 3 7:45am - Noon - Rosen Centre Hotel
On Friday, August 3 the Orange County Sheriff's Office will host the Safety and Security for Places of Worship Part II. Speakers will present information on Crisis Response, Conflict De-escalation and Litigation Risks for Places of Worship. A continental breakfast will be served beginning at 7:45am. This is a free event.
Who? Clergy, Leaders, Security Personnel, School/Daycare Directors and Senior Church Members
Why? Are you prepared to handle a crisis? Are you familiar with de-escalation techniques? Can you recognize litigation risks?
Where? Rosen Centre Hotel 9840 International Drive, Orlando
Flyer? Click HERE for flyer.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org to RSVP by July 20, 2018. Please include the following information: name, title, phone number, email address and place of worship.
Assistant to the Bishop Rev. Alex Shanks will lead a presentation and discussion about the proposal that the Council of Bishops will recommend to the called General Conference to be held in February 2019.
Rev. Melissa Cooper will lead a conversation around the topic "Grace across the Generations", focusing on generational identity, ways to connect with others across generations, and how to utilize generational strengths to enhance the ministries of the church.
All Full-time clergy serving in the local church are expected to attend. If you are not able to attend, please email Bob and request to be excused. All clergy beyond the local church are welcome to attend. Click HERE to register.
ECD Way Forward Meeting for Laity
August 18 9:00am
Assistant to the Bishop Rev. Alex Shanks will lead a presentation and discussion about the proposal that the Council of Bishops will recommend to the called General Conference to be held in February 2019. This is the same presentation he is giving to the clergy the preceding Thursday. Click HERE to register.
Lay Servant Ministries
September 14 & 15 - First UMC, Lake Alfred
Praying that all is going well with you and your families. Hope you are able during summer to spend time relaxing with family and friends. A devotional that I read this past week reminded me of something I oftentimes forget in the midst of life – good times or bad. The scripture reference is Jeremiah 31:3 – “I have loved you with an everlasting love”. Here is an exercise for all of us; read the verse out loud and add your name to the verse after YOU, to personalize these words from our Lord. Read it again and again raising and lowering your voice almost to a whisper. (Let us know how you felt.)
We are getting ready for our time together at Lake Alfred UMC on September 14 & 15, 2018. Classes in English and Spanish will be offered. Please spread the word as registration will soon be available on our District website. We are excited about meeting new friends and, Rev. Cathy Thacker and the members of Lake Alfred are ready to be our hosts.
As you celebrate July 4th, what a wonderful time to remember the words from Jeremiah, knowing that we are free to serve such a God whose words are always true and, who lets us know how precious we are to him. Cherish that freedom friends and give thanks by renewing your commitment to Him by remembering to spend time in His Word and with Him.
Freely serving alongside with you in His Vineyard,
Jim & Lynn
Questions? Contact Lynn Campbell email@example.com or Jim Boesch firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bishop's Regional Gatherings 2018
The Cross and the Flame:
Conversations with Bishop Carter
Bishop Carter will hold four regional gatherings in September of 2018.
These events are open to all, and there will be an opportunity to submit questions for Bishop Carter prior to the gatherings.
Each event will begin at 6:30 PM and a reception will follow.
•Sunday, September 16 – Killearn UMC, Tallahassee
•Monday, September 17 – First UMC, Winter Park
•Tuesday, September 18 – First UMC, Boca Raton
•Wednesday, September 19 – Harvest UMC, Lakewood Ranch
Click HERE to register and submit your questions.
Florida United Methodist Children's Home (FUMCH)
Believe it or not, a new school year is right around the corner. As Floridians continue to soak up the summer sun, parents and teachers are already preparing for classes. At the Florida United Methodist Children’s Home, that means providing school supplies for the nearly 500 children we serve each day. Thus, we are now entering our back to school supply drive for our children. This is a time when generous individuals, churches, and groups collect necessary school supplies for our students and staff.
Click HERE to find the 2018 school needs list for our children. To help us process the items received, we kindly request they be delivered to the Children's Home (Enterprise campus) no later than August 3rd, 2018.
If you have any questions, please contact Lynn Bellomy, Volunteer Relations Supervisor, at 386.668.4774 ext. 2321, or at email@example.com. Thank you for your continued support of our students and the ministry here at the Children's Home.
Legacy Scholars Academy Celebrates Largest Graduation Class
Click HERE to read about the third High School graduation at FUMCH.
2018 Annual Charge Conference
The East Central District will hold four Cluster Charge Conferences this fall. There are two scheduled for Saturdays and two for Sundays. Gathering and light refreshments will be 30 minutes before the Charge Conferences. Please plan on attending with your church.
|Oct. 13 10am
Lakeside Fellowship UMC, Sanford
|Oct. 21 4pm
Community of Faith UMC, Davenport
|Oct. 27 10am
Conway UMC, Orlando
|Nov. 4 4pm
First UMC, Apopka
||Beymer Memorial UMC
||Bear Lake UMC
||Community of Faith UMC
||Azalea Park UMC
||Edge Memorial UMC
|Deleon Springs UMC
||First UMC, Auburndale
||Christ Hispanic UMC
||First UMC, Apopka
|First UMC, DeLand
||First UMC, Kissimmee
||College Park UMC
||First UMC, Clermont
|First UMC, Mt. Dora
||First UMC, Lake Alfred
||First UMC, Eustis
|First UMC, Sanford
||First UMC, St. Cloud
||First UMC, Tavares
||First UMC, Winter Garden
||First UMC, Winter Park
|Lakeside Fellowship UMC
||Lena Vista UMC
||First UMC, Lake Wales
||Grace Haitian Mission
|Orange City UMC
||New Horizon UMC
||First UMC, Orlando
||Lake Helen UMC
||On Eagles Wings
||First UMC, Oviedo
|Pine Ridge Fellowship UMC
||Indian Lake UMC
||Ocoee Oaks UMC
||St. John's UMC
|St. Joseph's UMC
||St. Luke's UMC
||Orlando Korean Mission
||Pine Castle UMC
| Trinity UMC, DeLand
||Solid Rock UMC
||Spring of Life UMC
||St. Andrews UMC
||University Carillon UMC
The East Central District invites all United Methodists in the district to experience something different. Different because it's not common. Different because it's counter-cultural. It's called POV or Point of View.
POV is a one-day experience that makes space for engaging difficult conversations through the lens of empathy, context and mission. A space where you can bring your thoughts, questions, emotions, and heart without the fear of being judged or coerced.
It’s uncommon because in our polarized world, there are not many spaces left that don’t have dividing lines. It’s countercultural because often we are sold a false narrative of in or out, us or them.
At POV, we're all in, we're all us.
We listen, we share, we reflect, we engage.
So if you want to come to an uncommon experience and grow in empathy, come to the first ever District POV. Our conversation will be around “Preparing the Way Forward.” This experience has been designed with help from the Florida Annual Conference and is meant to help prepare for the ongoing work and conversation around the Way Forward. You can learn more about the Way Forward at www.umc.org/wayforward.
The facilitators for our District POV will be Rev. Alex Shanks and Dr. Bob Bushong. Rev. Alex helped to create POV for the Florida Annual Conference. He is the Assistant to Bishop Ken Carter.
We hope you will consider joining us and contributing your POV. We would love to hear it!
The event is from 9am-3pm with lunch being served. Click HERE for a slide to be used during worship. To RSVP for the POV event, please Click HERE.
Local Church Leadership Training
December 8, 2018 - Solid Rock UMC
The District Leadership Team (DLT) reviewed the surveys from the Annual Called to Serve event this past February and have made some changes. We will hold training for members of Finance, Trustees, & Staff Parish Relations Committees on December 8th. This will allow committees to start the new year ready to go! It will also free these folks up to attend other workshops in February that are not committee related. Please note, these classes will not be offered in February.
Finance - Tony Prestipino, Conference Treasurer
Staff Parish Relations - Marilynn Mollica, Human Resources Director and Dr. Bob Bushong, District Superintendent
Trustees - LaNita Battles, Ministry Protection Director
This event is free, we ask you to register for planning purposes. Click HERE to register.
Around the Conference and Beyond
Religious Liberty in the Historic Advance of Virginia Methodism
July 17-20, 2018 - Williamsburg, Virginia
Join United Methodist history lovers from across the Southeastern Jurisdiction’s 15 annual conferences as we meet July 17-20 at Williamsburg UMC, in Williamsburg, Virginia for the Annual Meeting of the Southeastern Jurisdiction Historical Society (SEJHS) of the United Methodist Church. The event, whose theme is Religious Liberty in the Historic Advance of Virginia Methodism, will be presented by the Virginia Conference Historical Society. You do not need to be an SEJ Historical Society member to attend! Everyone is welcome!
Our guests will enjoy an outstanding agenda of tours and lecturers telling the fascinating stories of Virginia Methodism and will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the 1968 Uniting Conference forming today’s United Methodist Church. The keynote speaker will be David L. Holmes, Walter G. Mason Professor of Religious Studies, Emeritus, College of William and Mary, who will discuss Religious Freedom in the Colonial Era.
We are also pleased to announce that the Rev. Alfred T. Day, III, General Secretary of the General Commission on Archives and History, will be joining us.
Attendees who participate in all lectures and tours of the 2018 Annual Meeting of the SEJ Historical Society in Williamsburg are entitled to receive one (1) Continuing Education Credit.
Please visit our website at https://www.vaumc.org/SEJHistoricalSociety2018 to find a brochure, registration information and speaker bios.
The Festival of Wisdom & Grace
August 13 - 16, 2018 - Lake Junaluska
Theme: The Wise Shall Shine
"Those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever." - Daniel 12:3
What is true wisdom? How do we receive it, cultivate it and pass it on? You've led a full life. How do you continue to live into that fullness in retirement? Join others in the second half of life for a time of inspiration and renewal in the North Carolina mountains.
Click HERE to register for the Festival of Wisdom & Grace, August 13-16 at Lake Junaluska. The conference includes workshops, worship, guest speakers, entertainment and more. Lodging and meal packages are available.
Life Enrichment Center
Want to help create meaningful experiences for your church's families this year? Want to encourage your parents to be more active in their kids' spiritual lives? Be sure they know about LECFamily programs!
Family Camp: July 20-22
Mom & Me: September 14-16
Questions? Email Asa Quinn firstname.lastname@example.org.
Warren W. Willis Camp Retreats & Summer Camp
Check out Warren W. Willis for many opportunities to reflect & fellowship!
Confirmation Retreat: October 5-7
Connect: October 19-21; November 9-11
Rooted: September 17-18
Summer Camp: June & July
Plan Your Own Church Retreat: Who doesn't love WWW? Why not plan your own retreat?
January 29 - February 1, 2019 - Epworth By The Sea
In lieu of our Clergy Gathering which had been tentatively scheduled October 23 - 24, 2018, we are inviting you to attend the Winter Conference at Epworth By The Sea, January 29 - February 1, 2019. This will be a combined event with the Bishops and clergy of the North Georgia, Mississippi, South Georgia and Florida Conferences. Dr. Tod Bolinger, author of Canoeing The Mountains, will be the keynote speaker.
Be sure to register soon as we expect this to be a sold out event.
Click HERE to register. Click HERE for the flyer.
Conference & District Offices are closed.
All Clergy with new appointments in the East Central District are asked to attend this orientation with the District Superintendent, Dr. Bob Bushong. The luncheon will be in the District parsonage.
Assistant to the Bishop Rev. Alex Shanks will lead a presentation and discussion about what the Council of Bishops will recommend to the called General Conference to be held in February 2019. Rev. Melissa Cooper will lead a conversation around the topic "Grace Across the Generations," focusing on generational identity, ways to connect with others across generations, and how to utilize generational strengths to enhance the ministries of the church. All Full-time clergy serving in the local church are expected to attend. If you are not able to attend, please email Bob and request to be excused. All clergy beyond the local church are welcome to attend.
Assistant to the Bishop Rev. Alex Shanks will lead a presentation and discussion about the proposal that the Council of Bishops will recommend to the called General Conference to be held in February 2019. Everyone is welcome to attend. Click HERE
District Committee on Ministry Meeting Candidates contact Elizabeth Flynn at RegistrarEC@flumc.org for appointment. Materials due July 26th.
Conference & District Offices are closed.
A Weekend of Learning! Friday, September 14, 2018 5:00pm - 8:00pm Saturday, September 15, 2018 8:00am - 4:00pm First United Methodist Church, Lake Alfred Information and registration will be published as soon as it is available.
The East Central District invites all United Methodists in the district to experience something different. Different because it's not common. Different because it's counter-cultural. It's called POV or Point of View. POV is a one-day experience that makes space for engaging difficult conversations through the lens of empathy, context and mission. A space where you can bring your thoughts, questions, emotions, and heart without the fear of being judged or coerced. It’s uncommon because in our polarized world, there are not many spaces left that don’t have dividing lines. It’s countercultural because often we are sold a false narrative of in or out, us or them. At POV, we're all in, we'...
The following churches are participating in this conference. Altoona UMC Asbury UMC, Maitland Community UMC, DeBary Deleon Springs UMC First UMC, DeLand First UMC, Mt. Dora First UMC, Sanford Grace UMC, Lake Mary Lakeside Fellowship UMC, Sanford - Host Church Orange City UMC Osteen UMC Pine Ridge Fellowship UMC, Deltona Sanlando UMC, Longwood St. Joseph's UMC Trinity UMC, DeLand