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NCD May 2019 Newsletter

 Greetings from the District Superintendent *


Dear Pastors and Leaders, 

Christ IS Risen!

Christ IS Risen Indeed!

As Easter people, the Risen Christ

tells us exactly what to do -


Make Disciples of all Nations

Baptize them and teach them

To obey Jesus -

Who says

Love the Lord your God with

Your whole being 


Your neighbor as yourself. 

This is being 


Now GO


Follow Jesus!

*I accepted the challenge to write the newsletter article as a tweet with 280 characters. This is how our culture communicates today. Give it a try this month!


Fresh Expression 


What is the future of the church

in North America?

In Deep Roots, Wild Branches, Beck discusses the future of the North American church in decline. He writes that we must cultivate what he calls a “blended ecology” of church that has both deep roots and wild branches. Drawing on biblical wisdom and emerging forms of church planting, Beck introduces us to present-day models and examples that don’t leave traditional forms behind, but harness the power of “both/and.” It honors vintage models while blending fresh expressions of real evangelism.

Beck was born in Gainesville and raised in Ocala, Florida. He serves on the Fresh Expressions US national leadership team as director of remissioning, as well as the cultivator of fresh expressions for the Florida Conference of the United Methodist Church. Michael and his wife, Jill, are the co-pastors of Wildwood United Methodist Church, where they direct recovery programs, a jail ministry, a food pantry, an interracial unity movement, and a network of thirteen fresh expressions that meet in places like tattoo parlors, dog parks, and burrito joints.

Deep Roots, Wild Branches Book Readings This Spring

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

6-7 p.m.

St. Mark’s United Methodist Church

1839 NE 8th Rd, Ocala, FL 34470


Wednesday, May 15, 2019

6 p.m.  Community Dinner

7 p.m. Book Reading & Signing

Wildwood United Methodist Church

300 Mason St, Wildwood, FL 34785


Thursday, May 16, 2019

9 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Fort Worth United Methodist Church

Fort Worth, Texas

Live Stream Available


June 4-6, 2019

Time, TBA

Florida Annual Conference

United Methodist Church 


For More Information Contact:

Rev. Michael Beck, 352-203-7258,








Or Rev. Laura Baber, 859-533-7257




The North Central District is going "From the Steeple to the Streets" once again! This year, we will be joining the Conference wide On Mission Together inititative. We are encouraging every church in the district to find one weekend in the month of May to create the OMT experience using the following framework.

Here is a brief timeline for you to plan your experience:

  1. By now probably you received a planning packet — the planning packet will include necessary information for taking the next step to start an OMT Weekend. If you haven’t received please contact Belinda at and request a copy.
  2. Once you have confirmed that your church will be hosting an OMT Weekend experience, we will send you an OMT Experience Box at the beginning of March, which will contain all of the resources and tools for hosting the event.
  3. We will have an OMT Weekend Training Webinar for all church leaders participating in the experience.
  4. Begin designing the experience with your team to launch in any weekend in May.

Here is what Ocala West is doing:

Please click here to read about Ocala West's "May is for On-Mission" church plan for the On Mission Together weekend. 

If you haven’t already done it, click here to let us know you will be joining us!

Looking forward to a great 2019! 



Fresh Expression - DINNER CHURCH - First Citra, First Hawthorne, First Reddick, and Sparr UMC













Lake & Meadows dinner church launched on Monday, March 18.  First Citra, First Hawthorne, First Reddick, and Sparr UMCs banded together to start this dinner church.  Our first week we had 25 guests, week 2 we had 31 guests, week 3 we had 40 and week 4 (in the rain) we had 22.  Hawthorne provided the meals the first four weeks and now Citra is taking over that honor.  We are so blessed to be serving this wonderful community.  Come on out and see what we are doing!  Monday nights, we arrive at 4 pm. for prep and dinner starts at 6 pm.  We are usually on our way home around 8 pm.  Dinner church is located in the Lake & Meadows Property Association Clubhouse at 15450 NE 30th CT, Citra, FL  32113


Debbie Mak


First UMCs of Citra and Reddick



Fresh Expressions - Ocala West UMC 

-May’s Car Show & BBQ at OWUMC will include live praise music and “prayers under the portico.”  Cars will be available to write prayers on under the portico as well as people to pray with individuals as desired.  The live music will                     combine the gifts of our praise team and Belleview UMC’s praise team!  (Friday, May 3rd @ 5:00 p.m.)

-Explorers (summer social skills children’s fresh expression program) will launch for its 3rd year in a row on Monday, June 10th at 8:30 a.m.  This program teaches social skills and provides integrated play group practice each week.  In addition, breakfast and lunch are provided with no charge.  Chapel is provided each week.  This program is toddler-5th grade with youth volunteering.

Rev. Jen Harner Sims


Fresh Expression - Trinity, Gainesville UMC 

Trinity United Methodist Church will be On Mission Together with a weekend of serving others, fellowship, and worship! We will have a day of serving on Saturday, May 18, with a variety of mission opportunities both big and small in our community. On Sunday, May 19, Trinity will combine our worship services for one worship service at 10 am followed by fellowship and lunch on the grounds. We're excited to be On Mission Together! 

Fresh Expressions:

Trinity United Methodist Church in Gainesville is diving into Fresh Expressions! Trinity UMC facilitates a Pace of Grace walk/run group that meets three mornings a week for fellowship and exercise. Holy Yoga is Christ-centered yoga for all levels that meets Thursday morning at Trinity UMC. On the first month of each month, No Bull Bibles and Brews offers Christian music followed by a time of fun and inspiring adult conversation about the Bible and Christian faith at a local brewpub.

Meghan Williams

Trinity UMC 

Outreach Chair


Annual Assessment of Clergy Leadership
Due May 31

Each year United Methodist clergy are to engage in a process of assessment of effectiveness.  A team from the Florida Conference Board of Ordained Ministry has worked diligently to provide clergy and local church Committees on Staff Parish Relationships with a set of tools that will assist in that process.  Below you will find links to the resources that are to be used in completing the assessment.  It is the hope that each clergy and each SPRC will take this process seriously so that our clergy continue to grow in effectiveness toward our mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

Click HERE for all the forms needed to complete the process. The completed forms should be emailed to Belinda 



 Lay Servant training prepares the laity to be in ministry through caring, communication, and leadership. 

North Central District - Lay Servants Training Event

August 3rd, 2019

8:00 am to 6:00 pm 

Location: New Covenant UMC - Lake Deaton Campus

6500 Wesleyan Way

Wildwood, FL 34785

Registration Deadline: July 23rd, 2019

Please click here for courses information and Registration Form. 
NOTE: Lay Servant certification expires after three years.


Questions? Contact Walter Dry - North Central District Lay Servant Ministry Coordinator at


Annual Conference 2019 set to take place at Florida Southern College

Make plans now to attend Annual Conference 2019 by booking your hotel rooms early. A list of hotels and rates can be found HERE. Housing will also be available at Florida Southern College (details forthcoming).

As you make your plans, the Annual Conference planning team wanted you to be aware of the following:
     1)  Our theme is “On Mission Together,” and we will welcome Bishop Will Willimon, missiologist Dr. Dana Robert, along with musical leaders Jarvis Wilson and Keith Wilson. 
     2)  Annual Conference will begin on Wednesday, June 5, with clergy and lay sessions at 10 a.m. We will conclude with the Service of Licensing, Commissioning and Ordination on Saturday, June 8, adjourning at 12:30 p.m.
     3)  We will be voting on delegates to General Conference 2020, with chances to meet delegates Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning.
     4)  All registration will take place at Florida Southern College, as will the clergy and lay sessions.
     5)  Florida Southern has added new parking shuttles and golf carts.
     6)  We will have an air-conditioned tent near Branscomb Auditorium which will be a place to eat and fellowship with other delegates. 

North Central District will have two Pre-Annual Conference Orientation on Monday, May 6th at First Ocala UMC, Family Life Center and Tuesday, May 7th at Mariner UMC at 6:30 pm. 

Rev. June Edwards will discuss 2019 Annual Conference and give a report of the 2019 General Conference. 


Run 4 Life 4 Miler
Florida United Methodist Children's Home
May 11

The 9th Annual Run 4 Life 4 Miler is May 11 at The Florida United Methodist Children's Home. This 4 Mile Event takes you through the FUMCH and Historic Enterprise.  The goal of this race is to bring awareness to mental health/depression issues and to raise money for programs providing support to those in need. All race proceeds will go to FUMCH and other local suicide prevention programs.

We would love for you to sign up on team The Florida Conference of the United Methodist Church.   Click HERE to register online.  Be sure to click on "Join Group/Team" & register on our team! Click HERE to print a registration form to mail.

Run, walk, or sponsor a child to participate!
We are one conference, let us come together as the UMC and help prevent suicide!  

The North Central District is glad to announce Rev. Michael Beck's first book on Fresh Expression entitled,  

Deep Roots, Wild Branches: Revitalizing the Church in the Blended Ecology 


Churches around the world are discovering that revitalization comes when we get back to our roots.  

The book is available at the District office for $10.00 and $2.00 for shipping and handling.

You may purchase directly from the district office, calling at 352-789-6981, please make checks payable to North Central District.  Or, click here to order online.

Development Fund offers 2.25 percent interest

The Florida United Methodist Foundation’s Development Fund is now offering an annual interest rate of 2.25 percent on deposits to the fund. Any Florida resident, business or church can invest, benefitting from that competitive rate. Here’s how it works: the Development Fund receives deposits from investors and then makes low-interest loans from those investments to United Methodist churches and affiliated faith-based nonprofits for new construction, expansion and renovation. Those investments are protected by nearly $500 million of value in church buildings and property through mortgages with the foundation. And deposits can be withdrawn at any time — unlike CDs and other investment options that have time requirements. Money can be deposited today and withdrawn the next week. And it only takes a minimum investment of $100 to open an account. For more information, contact the Rev. Mark Becker at 866-363-9673, extension 7125, or For an application to open an account, request one by sending an email to or go online at The Florida United Methodist Foundation is an independent 501(c)(3).


Bishop Carter's Invitation to 2020 Holy Land Trip

Clergy and laity are invited to join Bishop Ken Carter and Dr. Bob and Jeanne Bushong, for 10 days in the Holy Land, departing February 4, 2020. You will walk the shores of the Sea of Galilee, study the scriptures in the synagogue in Capernaum, pray on the Mount of Beatitudes and renew your baptism at the Jordan River. Click HERE for more information and registration. Click HERE to download the brochure.


Warren W. Willis Camp

Check out Warren W. Willis for many opportunities to reflect & fellowship!

Confirmation Retreat Sept 27-29
Created by God:  April 26-28
Rooted: September 16-17
Summer Camp
Plan Your Own Church Retreat:  Who doesn't love WWW?  Why not plan your own retreat?


Summer Youth Events at Lake Junaluska

Bring your youth group to Lake Junaluska this summer for worship, spiritual growth and adventure in the mountains of Western North Carolina. Every event includes energized worship with great speakers and bands, small groups, vespers and workshops. Youth also can choose to participate in mission projects and recreational activities such as rafting, ziplining or swimming. Find more information at
Event 1: June 15-19 – Rev. Andy Lambert with Jimmy Atkins and the Light ’Em Ups and a talent show, outdoor movie and Sunday morning worship in Stuart Auditorium
Event 2: June 20-23 – Rev. Juan Huertas with Abbye West Pates and a talent show
Event 3: June 23-27 – Guest speaker Stephanie Caro with Abbye West Pates and a talent show and outdoor movie
Event 4: June 27-30 – Rev. Janjay Innis with Zachariah Suggs and illusionist Josh Lozoff
Event 5: June 30-July 3 – Rev. Jeremy Steele with Zachariah Suggs and illusionist Josh Lozoff
Event 6: July 10-14 – Rev. Kevin Wright with Jimmy Atkins and the Light ’Em Ups and a talent show and comedian


Appointed Clergy serving in the Florida Annual Conference
Do No Harm: Mandatory Quadrennial Sexual Ethics Training

All clergy who are serving under episcopal appointment within the Florida Conference must attend one of the upcoming sexual ethics trainings this fall to remain in good standing. This includes ALL clergy serving in extension ministries, retired clergy serving under appointment, all deacons, elders, licensed local pastors (part time and full time). diaconal ministers and lay supply who are assigned to lead a church. This is required even if you have recently attended the Sexual Ethics training at Right Start or are scheduled to do so this coming May. A different curriculum will be covered in the quadrennial training. Certificates will be provided to those who complete the full 5 hours of training. A copy of your Certificate will be placed in your clergy file.

When & Where?

You may attend a session outside of your appointed district.

  • Tampa at St. James UMC on Tuesday, September 24
  • Jacksonville at Mandarin UMC on Thursday, October 3
  • Gainesville at Trinity UMC on Wednesday, October 9
  • Plantation at Plantation UMC on Tuesday, October 22
  • Orlando at St. Luke's UMC on Wednesday, November 6


Festival of Wisdom and Grace
Beyond 50 Ministries
August 5-8 - Lake Junaluska, NC

How do we grow deeper roots in our faith,  turning our age into an asset as we cultivate spiritual maturity and strengthen our relationship with Jesus Christ? How do we become the disciples Jesus called us to be?

"Growing Deeper Roots" is the theme and it promises to be a great experience with a lineup of insightful and inspiring speakers, including Richard Gentzler author of "An Age of Opportunity: Intentional Ministry by, with, and for Older Adults." In addition there will be workshops, entertainment, worship, special events, and outings. Yet the pure blessing of the conference is the opportunity to enjoy the scenic North Carolina scenery for a time of rest and relaxation. Join others in the second half of life for a time of inspirational and renewal in the mountains of North Carolina. 

Click on the following promotional items: FWG Poster FWG Brochure
Click HERE to go to the Festival of Wisdom and Grace website.

Clergy Day Apart
September 17 - Lakeland

Clergy, mark your calendars for a clergy day apart with Bishop Carter on Tuesday, September 17, from 10:00am - 3:30pm in Lakeland. We will not hold regional gatherings this year, so this is your chance to spend time with Bishop Carter, who will speak about resiliency in the midst of our changing context. We hope all clergy will plan to attend.

North Central District - DCOM Date Information 

District Superintendent:  Rev. June Edwards (352) 789-6981

dCOM Chair:  Rev. Beth Farabee

dCOM Registrar:  Elizabeth Flynn

DCOM Meeting Location: NC District Office, First UMC, Ocala

  • Thurs, May 9 (materials due Apr 11) 1st Provisional attempt
  • Thurs, Aug 22 (materials due July 25) 2nd Provisional attempt
  • Thurs, Dec 12 (materials due Nov 14) 



May  3-5 - "On Mission Together" - May 3-5 Weekend! 

May 6 - Pre-Conference Orientation First Ocala, Family Life Center at 6:30 pm

May 7 - Pre-Conference Orientation Mariner UMC, at 6:30 pm

May 27 - Conference & District Office Closed

May 28 - Right Start for all Moving Clergy

May 29 - Right Start for clergy new to Florida Conference/first time appointments