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 this week's crossword puzzle. Have a story to share? Email or click here to use our convenient “Submit a story” form.

Image courtesy of Copyright © by Cliff Leitch.

November 18, 2019

Council of Bishops focuses on “justice, reconciliation, and healing.”

Semi-annual meeting includes a renewed commitment to relationships, which are at the heart of Jesus’ prayer for unity with his disciples.

September 26, 2019

UMW retreat celebrates 150-year legacy

UMW members had to overcome the rules of society and the limits imposed by their own national and racial identities to assume vital leadership roles.

July 18, 2019

Bishops call for new ways of embodying unity through mission, relationships

The bishops of The United Methodist Church will seek to strengthen annual conferences in 2019 through the ministries of sending and missional strategy, Bishop Kenneth Carter, president of the Council of Bishops, has said.

April 03, 2019

Cuban Methodist church sees massive growth

In the past 16 years alone, Methodist church membership has increased by 306 percent in Cuba, the Communist island nation located 90 miles from Florida’s nearest shore.

March 15, 2019

United Methodist Women: 150 years in mission

In celebration of Women's History Month, information and resources about the 150th anniversary and legacy of United Methodist Women is available on its website, and United Methodist Communications released a new video about Mary McLeod Bethune's legacy this March.

February 25, 2019

Bishop Carter to host webinar on GC 2019 results March 1

Bishop Carter and delegation leaders will host a discussion on the results of the Called General Conference session in St. Louis.

February 12, 2019

Role of Bishops in the Called General Conference 2019

Tuesday, February 12, 2019   To my fellow United Methodists:   Greetings in the blessed name of our...

October 26, 2018

UM connection aids Hurricane Michael recovery

Members of Lynn Haven United Methodist Church await a new 4,000-square-foot tent they’ll use for worship. The Hurricane Michael-ravaged congregation and many United Methodists in the area are struggling to return to normalcy. Jim Patterson has an update on the denomination’s efforts to provide relief in the Alabama-West Florida, Florida and South Georgia conferences.

July 31, 2018

Way Forward report released in all four official languages of General Conference

The Commission on a Way Forward’s final report has been translated in all four official languages of the General Conference of The United Methodist Church.

May 25, 2018

Bishop Ken Carter responds to Judicial Council decision

Bishop Ken Carter's statement expresses gratitude for the Judicial Council’s work and our continuing commitment to serve and lead our church, as well as providing clarity around the Council of Bishops' motivation for requesting a Declaratory Decision.

November 17, 2017

A Way Forward: general directions from the most recent meetings of the Commission on a Way Forward and the Council of Bishops

Bishop Ken Carter provides a sketch of general directions from the most recent meeting of the Commission on a Way Forward and the Council of Bishops.

November 08, 2017

Bishop Carter elected as President of Council of Bishops

Florida Area Bishop Kenneth H. Carter today was officially elected as the next president of the Council of Bishops of The United Methodist Church in Lake Junaluska.

November 06, 2017

UMC provides Giving Tuesday resources

The denomination provides Giving Tuesday resources in five languages.

October 27, 2017

Six ways the Reformation affects our world

When Martin Luther posted his 95 Theses on Oct. 31, 1517, he hoped to spark a theological conversation about repentance. Five hundred years later, Christians — and not only Protestants — are still living with the changes wrought by the Reformation he started.

September 01, 2017

UMCOR on Harvey: prayer, donations, relief kits needed first; volunteers later

UMCOR is currently working with disaster coordinators and early response teams in Louisiana and Texas to provide relief to the many people whose lives have been impacted by hurricane/tropical storm Harvey. They will continue to update this page and UMCOR social media as they receive new information.

August 16, 2017

Council of Bishops president denounces Charlottesville violence

"Let there be no excuses or political justification for the evil that was on full display in Charlottesville last Saturday. Nor, let us forget that many such displays of white supremacy, racism and hatred go un-reported or under-reported in many places. White supremacist and neo-Nazi ideologies are abhorrent and entirely inconsistent with the Christian faith."

May 19, 2017

Dr. Lovett Weems transitions to new role

Wesley Theological Seminary proved the ideal environment for a teacher who loves to learn. “I am always looking for a new way of looking at things, which has helped me move through different phases of my ministry,” Weems said. He is the former director of the Lewis Center for Church Leadership.

April 28, 2017

Bishop Carter and the Council of Bishops respond to Judicial Council ruling

In its decision, the Judicial Council ruled on Karen Oliveto’s election and consecration as Bishop.

April 25, 2017

Bishop Ough calls for unity as church approaches Judicial Council hearing on Bishop Karen Oliveto

I am in daily prayer for all United Methodists as we are being called upon in this critical moment to tenderly hold the unity and mission of the church in our hearts and hands. --Bishop Bruce R. Ough

April 11, 2017

Recent meeting optimistic about future, delves into tough task

The multinational commission held its third meeting April 6-8 at the United Methodist Building in Washington.

March 03, 2017

Way Forward group looking to get feedback

The commission, which held its second meeting Feb. 27-March 2 in Atlanta, must develop proposals aimed at keeping the multinational denomination together despite deep differences around homosexuality.

February 22, 2017

Florida 'Praying Our Way Forward' the week of Feb. 26

The Florida Annual Conference’s week of leading “Praying Our Way Forward” is Sunday, February 26, through Saturday, March 4. Resources to assist churches participating next week include a prayer by Bishop Carter and a litany for Ash Wednesday, as well as a video introducing our Florida prayer effort.

February 16, 2017

February Update from the Moderators of a Commission on a Way Forward

In our next meeting, to be held in just a few days, we will be studying the first three chapters of Paul’s letter to the Galatians. Three commission members, from three different jurisdictions and two different continents, will lead our Bible study. We invite you to read these chapters with us, and to reflect on the challenges and assets in your own communities and congregations.

February 09, 2017

For Methodists in Cuba, 'These are good times'

Hard work and good relations—with fellow Cubans, United Methodists and others—help shape today’s church. All photos courtesy Mike DuBose, UMNS. This is part of a series of features on the church in Cuba.

February 06, 2017

Cuban worship: Music, prayer and passion

United Methodist News Service provides a four-part series that examines the state of the Methodist Church in Cuba. The articles, which were scheduled to be published January 31, February 2, 7, and 9, take a widespread look at how Methodism is growing throughout urban as well as rural regions of the nation. Linda Bloom, assistant news editor for UMNS, and Mike DuBose, veteran United Methodist Communications photographer, spent one week traveling throughout Cuba.They took advantage of a recent loosening of travel embargoes for Americans to the Caribbean Island to meet with pastors, members and missionaries.

January 26, 2017

Commission on a Way Forward holds organizational meeting in Atlanta

Conversations ranged from reflection on challenges, hopes and concerns to the current state of what’s happening in the church to the meaning of unity to practical questions about how the Commission will go about its work and the processes and strategies that will be used to structure that work and meet the target dates.

December 23, 2016

Commission on a Way Forward: Update from the Moderators

Our way forward, as women and men created in the image of God, is to seek reconciliation with one another. It is not that we do the work of reconciliation so that we can later share the gospel through evangelism and mission. There is no evangelism, no mission, no gospel apart from reconciliation.

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.

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 27, 2016

World Communion Sunday is Oct. 7

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 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.

August 08, 2016

Young people work toward change concerning racism

Resources for youth ministry and race conversations are available from several United Methodist agencies.

July 27, 2016

Bishop Carter to serve as a moderator of 'The Way Forward'

This post includes a press release from the Council of Bishops' executive committee regarding matters of unity and human sexuality prefaced by remarks by Bishop Ken Carter.

July 18, 2016

Resources for the Western Jurisdiction election of Karen Oliveto

Bishop Ken Carter offers resources and a reflection about the election of Karen Oliveto as a bishop.

July 13, 2016

Haupert-Johnson appointed bishop of North Georgia Conference

The Rev. Sue Haupert-Johnson, a district superintendent of the Florida Annual Conference, has been elected as a United Methodist bishop by delegates at the Southeastern Jurisdictional Conference. She has been appointed bishop of the North Georgia Conference for the next quadrennium.

July 08, 2016

July conferences to elect 15 U.S. bishops

While the U.S. political scene focuses on who is winning red and blue states, many United Methodists are preparing to vote on who will wear the purple.

May 26, 2016

Council of Bishops' letter to the church

Council of Bishops follows tradition with letter to the church.

May 05, 2016

Florida GC media center launched

Use the GC 2016 link in the gray navigational bar near the top of the home page to access links to social media, news feeds and photo galleries on Florida's General Conference webpage headquarters.

May 04, 2016

Mother of Methodism: Susanna Wesley

This Mother's Day we honor Susanna Wesley. The example of faith and religious reverence she set for her children John and Charles inspired them to become powerful spiritual leaders and to launch the Methodist movement.

May 03, 2016

Haupert-Johnson launches episcopal candidacy website

The Florida Conference episcopal candidate's website includes sermons, a biography, endorsements and a video.

February 26, 2016

You’re welcome: tips for greeting visitors this Easter

Children's drawings, like this one of a visitor and a cross on Easter morning, can warm the ...

February 09, 2016

Postage stamp commemorates AME Church founder

The U.S. Postal Service kicks off Black History Month by unveiling a "forever" stamp that marks the life and witness of AME founder Richard Allen.

February 03, 2016

Lent begins Feb. 10; resources are available

Lent is a season of 40 days, not counting Sundays. It begins on Ash Wednesday – Feb. 10 this year – ...

February 01, 2016

Black History Month resources available

Black History Month resources are available courtesy of the denomination’s Discipleship Ministries. The theme for 2016 is “Unnatural Disasters: The Stony Road to Hope.”

January 25, 2016

How to recruit volunteers (when begging doesn't work)

United Methodist Communications offers some tips that include using volunteer matching services and exploring a Rethink Church grant.

January 05, 2016

Are online relationships healthy for teens?

The Internet, social media and gaming have created changes in the way teens form, nurture and maintain relationships that ministry leaders should consider.

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