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. Have a story to share? Email firstname.lastname@example.org or click here to use our convenient “Submit a story” form.
This trailblazer in the Florida United Methodist Church shattered barriers through determination, work, and empathy for others.
Participants in Florida Advocacy Day stress social justice and other issues to state lawmakers.
Bishop Ken Carter is pleased to announce the appointment of Rev. Thom Shafer as the new South West District Superintendent effective July 1, 2020. Rev. Shafer will follow Rev. Dan Jackson, who is ...
They will meet with lawmakers to push for many items related to social justice, including felon voting rights, immigration, feeding the hungry, and children’s rights.
The family service organization in Miami-Dade County offers education, nutrition, and financial planning to help many people break the cycle of poverty
Grace UMC in St. Augustine helped the city confront its racial divide and reach a joyful conclusion.
A refugee from Castro’s Cuba whose family endured imprisonment and forced labor for their religious devotion, Rev. Dr. Rini Hernandez will lead the effort. He has been a church-founding pastor and Methodist district superintendent in both Cuba and Florida.
The congregations routinely get together to do things, like the upcoming fall festival, which serves as a Halloween alternative. There are the Christmas cantata, the Easter sunrise service at the lake on the property of the Methodist church and the Fifth Sunday sings.
The “Matthew 25 Challenge,’’ a weeklong event held at Orlando’s Pine Castle United Methodist Church, energized its members by not only giving back, but also by undergoing real-life exercises that were everyday occurrences for the least of their brethren.
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.
“I’m always in awe of how many clergy and lay people have heard the call to Christ right here on our grounds. There’s something special about this place that inspires people to go back out to the world and do amazing things.”
Congregational Care Ministries (CCM) is a program aimed to empower lay people to work alongside their ministers. They perform services such as hospital visits, leading grief and divorce groups and even administering communion to home-bound people.
“From being a kid and a camper at Oasis, my biggest takeaway was getting to unplug from that city urban environment and going somewhere where you could be more open and reflective.”
iServe is a grassroots ministry that gives church members an outlet to assist people with pressing needs in the community at no cost.
The story of how Derbyshire Place and a neglected community named Port Orange came to nourish each other brings to mind a quote from beloved children’s book The Little Prince: “What makes the desert beautiful is that somewhere it hides a well.”
Churches in the Southeast district practice the love and gratitude of radical hospitality.
The free program invites young adults, ages 18-25, to apply for either a 6-week non-paid internship or a 12-week paid residency for study and training in a specific ministry that interests them.
Rev. Dionne Hammond has been named as a new cabinet member by Florida Conference Bishop Ken Carter, and Rev. Dan Jackson and Rev. Rini Hernandez will continue to serve on the cabinet in new roles.
Bishops sent representatives from each annual conference to receive training in administrative/judicatory response, advocacy for the accused and the alleged victim and integrity and healthy boundaries.
The focus on female pastors was prompted by an increase in the number of women entering the clergy, as well as a desire to see more women in leadership positions.
Cara Fleischer, Elan Miavitz-Brown and Rev. Tiffania Willetts, all from Florida, will join others from around the nation in the online commissioning. The ceremony will affirm the EarthKeepers in their call to the ministry of creation care and will bless their work in their communities.
In Johannesburg, South Africa, it brought together about 300 youth and young adults from 40 nations to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the merger between the Methodist Church and the Evangelical United Brethren
United Methodist Women across Florida will have a special opportunity to “press pause from the day-to-day routine’’ during a weekend retreat Sept. 7-9 at the conference Life Enrichment Center.
The Bishop and Cabinet invite anyone to join in reading the following passages – Isaiah 40-66, Romans 8, Philippians 1-4 – each month. The plan is to read a chapter a day, beginning with Isaiah 40 on the first day of the month and ending with Philippians 4 on the last day of the month.
"Although I am still unsure of what exactly my calling is, I do have a better understanding of the fact that God is not looking for me to be a perfect person. Instead He is looking for me to simply say, Lord, do whatever you want." —Catie Hessler
Janet Earls, director of Congregational Vitality for the Florida Conference, said her idea of church changed during a trip to England with Bishop Carter and others three years ago. The place where Fresh Expressions took root provides inspiration to an upcoming Missio Ecclesia conference Feb. 22-23 at FUMC Lakeland. Registration is now open.
The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was the face of the African-American civil rights movement throughout the 1960s until his assassination on April 4, 1968. The United Methodist Church recognizes “the ...
In celebration of Black History Month, United Methodist Communications (UMCOM) has provided resources, which can be accessed here. Highlighted resources below start with a new video of James Lawson's ...
After 35 years working for the church, Paulette Monroe is working to turn her position as Conference Lay Leader into an opportunity to empower. She talks about her plans and dreams to reach out.
Members of Palm Harbor UMC recently visited the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier to lay a wreath and honor all who have served. For many conference churches, Veterans Day is a day for recognition and thanks; especially to those men and women we have lost, and the families who supported them.
They are asked to preach, attend church meetings, visit the sick and participate in worldwide missions. Ten students recently participated in unique internships to consider pastoral careers.
Florida Bishop Ken Carter announced in March the appointment of Rev. Sara McKinley as new director of the Office of Clergy Excellence. McKinley talks of exploring new mindsets of young clergy and those considering a call to ministry.
Described by Sharon Austin, director of Connectional Ministries, as an important time of gathering and fellowship, the 2017 Annual Conference returns to Orlando, and the 2018 Annual Conference returns to Florida Southern College in Lakeland.
The upcoming Mission: Ignite and Engage, will offer Florida Conference leadership a unique opportunity through workshops and chat rooms - to discover new ways to engage with their communities.
Resources for youth ministry and race conversations are available from several United Methodist agencies.
As society becomes more complex, the more sophisticated leadership must become, according to Bishop Janice Riggle Huie. “So, we’re talking about leading in a culture of change. And that change increasingly is rapid, unpredictable and nonlinear.”
The call for leadership, love and inclusion wove throughout the meeting’s first day, from Holy Communion to the night's prayer vigil for the Orlando shooting victims.
The conference is seeking storytellers who will share stories about this year's meeting theme, "Leading Like Jesus."
I love the church. I am not naive about the church, or my own human nature, but I love the church. I loved serving as a pastor in the local church, and now I am blessed in the ministry of being a bishop. My love for the church recognizes her flaws; we hold the treasure of the gospel in earthen vessels, Paul wrote, to show that the transcendent belongs to God and not to us.
The Florida Conference episcopal candidate's website includes sermons, a biography, endorsements and a video.
Delegates to General Conference 2016 will be asked to renew funding for the Young Clergy Initiative. The grant-based program, created by General Conference 2012, aims to bolster the ranks of young pastors in The United Methodist Church. While officials say it is too soon for statistical evidence that the program is working, anecdotal accounts offer encouragement.
After years of decline, a congregation in Houston has been experimenting with a new ministry with refugees in a nearby neighborhood. This collection tells a story of reclaiming a mission, navigating change, nurturing innovative leaders and embarking on the patient work of building friendship.
Leading Like Jesus is the theme of the 2016 Annual Conference, and pre-conference leadership gatherings will launch the topic and include tracks tailored for laity and clergy. All sessions will be held on Wednesday, June 15, at the Buena Vista Palace Hotel in Orlando.
Jacksonville’s Mandarin UMC promotes the culture of the call to ministry.
The arts are a starting place for addressing what different faiths have in common, says the founder of a nonprofit that hosts interfaith art exhibitions around the world.
New Wesley Foundation leaders have been named to lead two of Florida’s universities: Gator Wesley Foundation at the University of Florida in Gainesville and United Wesley of Miami.
The end of the home-court advantage is result of our own flaws -- we must confess, more honestly, our sins -- and it is the inevitable consequence of modernity and, more recently, post-modernity. Modernity wondered how Christianity could be true; post-modernity asked how Christianity could be authentic. Taken together, the faith seemed out of sync with culture.
Those arriving at the Real Ideas Conference at Van Dyke Church in Lutz came with different aspirations.
Courageous institutional leaders work to hire and develop the next generation of leaders -- even knowing that those leaders likely will leave to work somewhere else, writes a managing director of Leadership Education at Duke Divinity. Article courtesy of Faith & Leadership www.faithandleadership.com.
A Florida Conference pastor and a summer staff intern who come from widely differing cultures share a story about how building bridges and staying at Christ’s table can overcome stereotyping and divisiveness. “We don’t have to be united in our particulars to be united as Methodists.”