Local Church News

The Florida Conference is home to hundreds of local churches, ministries, clergy and lay members dedicated to making a difference in the world. Check out the stories below to see how they are sharing ideas and making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

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October 11, 2019

Community service commitment transforms church

“When you walk through the doors, you feel the hospitality and enthusiasm; it’s contagious. The church is alive. It is phenomenal to see the turnaround our church has made.”

October 04, 2019

Special needs daycare celebrates 30 years

To date, 4,500 children have come through the learning center’s doors, and the organization has expanded to two different locations with five classes in each.

September 27, 2019

Seminole Heights visits sister church in Cuba

Rev. Willetts and her sister, Isabel Willetts, along with fellow church member Paige Carlson, flew to Cuba over the summer, then rode for two hours on a seriously bumpy road to meet members of their ...

September 20, 2019

Celebration UMC focuses on special needs children

Focusing on spiritual, emotional and physical healing led to a ministry perhaps few, if any members, had imagined. They now offer regular services and programs geared toward children with special ...

September 13, 2019

Keystone, Odessa, music ministry is rockin’

About 25 percent of the church’s regular attendees are in some way involved in the music ministry, Music Minister David Golden said.

August 26, 2019

Methodist mission in Wahneta gets new life

The Methodist campus that includes a church and community center was shuttered in 2017 after several stagnant years and flagging support from the faith-based community.

August 16, 2019

First Wauchula fights hunger in a poor county

Anchored in the credo of welcoming the stranger, the ministry feeds the hungry until they aren’t anymore.

August 09, 2019

Winter Park consignment sale supports community charities

Hannah’s Closet, a consignment event that happens over a weekend in February but takes all year to come together, focuses on supporting charities that work with women and children.

August 07, 2019

Commentary: United Methodists are question mark people

Christians are question-mark people. We put question marks where others have put periods. We walk by faith, not by sight.

July 26, 2019

St. Paul’s, Tallahassee, wins sustainability award

Church members joined forces with Sustainable Tallahassee’s Rags2Bags to replace plastic one-use grocery bags with re-usable T-shirt grocery bags using a no-sew construction.

July 19, 2019

Palm Coast youth provide relief to hurricane survivors

Our experiences that week bonded us and left us with many memories. The students and adults arrived home with strengthened friendships, deepened faith and a renewed understanding of how blessed we ...

July 12, 2019

Teens trek to Hispanic-Latin worship night

Dozens of teenagers, yes, teenagers, recently made the trek from all over Central Florida to a small town north of Winter Haven to worship God, socialize, eat and connect.

July 05, 2019

'Whooosh' came to Saint Mark, Lakeland, for VBS

The VBS program celebrates remembering what God has done in the lives of His people.

June 28, 2019

Coronado gives the song back to rehab residents

Some of the Ocean View residents had trouble reading and holding their hymnals, due to the small print and the heavy weight.

June 21, 2019

Imagination will take you everywhere

First UMC Gainesville is launching an Arts Academy to minister to the east side of town, beginning with music lessons.

May 24, 2019

Trinity receives 'Beacon of Hope' Preservation Award

The church was recognized for its involvement in preserving the unique architectural resources in the restoration of Trinity’s bell tower. The church, built in 1891, is located in the heart of the ...

May 10, 2019

FUMC Oviedo: homelessness is opportunity for ministry

Homelessness is a chronic problem throughout Central Florida, and it offers an opportunity for United Methodists to be the hands and feet of Jesus.

May 03, 2019

Music is at heart of ‘Imagine Worship’ at Slyvan Abbey

Attendance has grown steadily, especially during the month-long April concert series held on Thursdays at the Main Street Gazebo near the water in Clearwater.

April 26, 2019

Silver Palm honored as ‘Church of the Year’

A small church in Homestead with a big heart for children was recognized in March for its commitment to going above and beyond the generosity of most Florida UMCs in supporting Florida United ...

April 12, 2019

First Orlando supports ‘Little Hats, Big Hearts’ campaign

The Needle Arts Group helps raise awareness about congenital heart disease.

April 05, 2019

Cuddle Cove: space for infants in sanctuary

Every Sunday morning new moms, and some dads, gather behind a privacy screen and listen to the sermon and sing with the congregation from rocking chairs.

March 29, 2019

First Eustis tackles childhood homelessness

There are a lot of kids aging out of foster care with no place to go. Housing, like everywhere else in Florida, is either lacking or expensive

March 22, 2019

North Naples’ summer program teaches children service

VBS has been transformed into a “Serve Your World Camp,” with the idea that no one is ever too young to serve.

March 15, 2019

First Bartow students learn about Israelites’ journey

Students learned about manna from heaven and the exodus of the Israelites from bondage in Egypt and their flight through the parted Red Sea.

March 01, 2019

A mailing address makes all the difference

The “mail call” idea is that the homeless, who are referred to as guests, can receive mail addressed to them in care of the church. It has turned into a lifeline for many.

February 22, 2019

Closed church reborn with heart for mission

Over the past decade, Joining Hands Mission has grown its ministry from a simple Sunday breakfast into a community-wide network of loving and caring people who provide essential services for the ...

February 15, 2019

Church enjoys Native American worship elements

The congregation learned of the love Native Americans have for Jesus and how they incorporate their Christianity with their tribal customs.

January 18, 2019

Praying in park leads to community collaboration

The idea was to pray for the community, its doctors, teachers, children and firefighters.

January 11, 2019

Church seeks to expand healing ministry

Miami Lakes is expanding its Celebrate Recovery program to include not just alcohol and drug addicts, but also those who suffer from anxiety and depression or other types of addictions.

January 04, 2019

Allendale ministry helps less fortunate

The ministry is organized and headed by a coalition between the United Methodist Women and United Methodist Cooperative Ministries Suncoast.

December 21, 2018

Church teaches youth to value selves, others, then lead

A new ministry at Harvest United Methodist Church helps teens identify their gifts and strengths, value the gifts and strengths of others and lead by example.

December 14, 2018

Old camper turns into housing relief

As Rachel read stories of homes destroyed in Panama City, Mexico Beach and elsewhere from Hurricane Michael, God whispered in her ear: Why not spruce up the trailer and donate it to the relief effort ...

December 07, 2018

Pub group takes the Word outside church walls

The group is populated primarily by church members who don't enjoy traditional Bible study and former members who are willing to re-engage and give the church a second, less-traditional look.

November 30, 2018

First Dunedin shows ecumenical teamwork power

The ecumenical Thanksgiving service is just one of the church’s commitments to its community.

November 16, 2018

Love is at the heart of Keystone's anniversary

Keystone UMC celebrated its 150th anniversary on Nov. 18.

November 02, 2018

Inaugural 'Fall for Naples' event fun for all

North Naples Church held its first Fall for Naples event on Oct. 20 on the grounds of the church and The Village School.

October 19, 2018

Through the Roof Ministries

Through the Roof is a special-needs ministry of The United Methodist Church of the Palm Beaches, and it works with people from many churches throughout the area. Phyllis Parthemer heads the ministry, ...

October 11, 2018

Broadway UMC donates pet fire rescue equipment

Broadway UMC in Orlando provides all area fire engines with the latest equipment to save an animal's life.

October 05, 2018

First, Seffner, starts a band for school

The church has also partnered with Instruments of Change, which successfully started four other school bands in Hillsborough County. The program is designed to teach students more than just how to ...

September 28, 2018

Cedar Key prayer angels bless 4,600 worldwide

The angels are cut and sewn from the uniforms of military personnel who have been deployed and returned safely.

September 21, 2018

A little church makes big miracles

A tiny old church tucked in the heart of downtown St. Cloud is accomplishing huge things for the area’s downtrodden. Pastor Wilma Reyes of First United Methodist Church calls their ministries nothing ...

September 14, 2018

Collaborative masterpieces: Families paint together at church

A special evening of fellowship and painting dubbed by First Lakeland as Paint Night is bringing families together for some wholesome, church fun.

September 07, 2018

School supplies bring joy to teachers and church members

The need at Sandy Lane Elementary was greater than normal, and that’s when church member Faye Williams sprang into action to make sure that urgent need was met.

August 31, 2018

Mission in Guyana from Essequibo to Lake Capoey

In July, a team of five representatives from First UMC of Fort Lauderdale spent a week in Guyana doing what Senior Pastor Jill Auman called “renewing our commitment” to the Ruimveldt Children’s Home ...

August 24, 2018

North Naples camp instills spirit of service, volunteerism

Since 2015, the aim of the camp has been to instill a spirit of service and volunteerism in children, beyond what a regular Vacation Bible School experience could do.

August 17, 2018

Pompano Beach ministry brings God’s love to those in need

Love in Action Pompano Beach volunteers serve a hot meal each Sunday to more than 200 people from the surrounding community.

August 10, 2018

Summer Salad gatherings offer women fellowship

It all started when church member Suzanne Tedder realized the women attending the weekly Bible study were having a bit of summer cabin fever, eager to escape the chaos of running the kids here, there ...

August 08, 2018

'Shopping for a Mission' fills Jacksonville pantry

Many generous participants of all ages from Beach Church in Jacksonville went on a special shopping trip to help restock BEAM's (Beaches Emergency Assistance Ministry) food pantry.

August 03, 2018

Port Orange Girl Scouts fight hunger

A year after the girls organized and built an outdoor food pantry at First United Methodist Church of Port Orange, the service project continues to meet the needs of the surrounding neighborhood.

July 27, 2018

Kids worship in 'prayground' at First UMC Lakeland

A special section in the back of the fellowship center is reserved for babies, toddlers and children up to 8 years old so they can play quietly and still participate in the service.

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