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.

January 27, 2020

United Methodists head to Tallahassee for Advocacy Day

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.

January 20, 2020

The battle to realize Dr. King’s dream continues

Christians must remain on guard to confront prejudice and hate in whatever form they appear.

December 02, 2019

Conference starts ministry in women's prison

The United Methodist Church committed to bringing the gospel of Jesus to inmates at Lowell Correctional Institution.

November 25, 2019

Branches provides a lifeline where it’s needed most

The family service organization in Miami-Dade County offers education, nutrition, and financial planning to help many people break the cycle of poverty

November 20, 2019

Old racial wounds start to heal through honest conversation

Grace UMC in St. Augustine helped the city confront its racial divide and reach a joyful conclusion.

November 11, 2019

Florida’s need for immigration services is acute

In the 20 years since its founding, Justice for Our Neighbors has opened 17 offices in 15 states, including two in Florida. And, according to the National JFON website, it had its busiest year in 2018, serving 4,395 new clients from 112 different countries.

October 17, 2019

Disney grant to fund ‘Hotels to Home’ ministry

The Community Hope Center, sometimes known as Hope 192, recently received a $75,000 Disney grant that will be used to start a program known as “Hotels to Home.’’

July 10, 2019

Conference is planting a church in women’s prison

Bishop Ken Carter began discussions three years ago about starting a United Methodist church inside the Lowell Correctional Institute in Reddick, about 15 miles north of Ocala. It houses about 3,000 women, the largest female prison population in the United States.

July 08, 2019

Opioid crisis series: Clergy embrace becoming foster parents

The Revs. Matt and Beth Johnson in Morgantown, W.Va., answered the call to become foster parents to children living in what Matt called “a rough situation.” After a two-year process, they were able to adopt the brother and sister they were fostering.

April 29, 2019

Prison ministry leads to ‘House of Hope’

The Hillsborough House of Hope assists women who battled substance abuse or were arrested for prostitution and other crimes.

April 12, 2019

May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

Discipleship Ministries and United States agencies provide a wealth of resources for observing the month in services or classrooms.

April 01, 2019

United Methodists lobby at Florida Advocacy Days

Well over 70 United Methodists from across the Florida Conference assembled in Tallahassee in late March for the annual Florida Advocacy Days.

March 07, 2019

Southwest district tackles root causes of homelessness

Homelessness is pervasive in the Florida United Methodist Church Conference’s Southwest District, and churches are using diverse methods to help.

February 01, 2019

Black History Month: Honoring Black Methodists' history

Part of the rich story of Methodism includes African Americans who chose to stay with the denomination despite being sometimes excluded or treated unfairly.

January 29, 2019

UMC sexual ethics resources are available

The UMC believes sexual misconduct within ministerial relationships represents an exploitation of ...

January 15, 2019

Making the ‘Dream’ a reality: the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr.

King was mindful of the power and responsibility of the church in healing the divides of society. He was also well aware of challenges hindering churches themselves.

November 26, 2018

Do No Harm: training addresses sexual misconduct

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.

November 06, 2018

Social justice advocates celebrate 30 years of HOPE

St. Andrews United Methodist Church in Brandon joined in, celebrating the 30th anniversary of HOPE—Hillsborough Organization for Progress and Equality—by voting to continue the fight for housing for the downtrodden, help for the elderly and second chances for young people who make bad choices.

October 24, 2018

Florida's Amendment 4: The time to act is now!

We have partnered with Faith in Florida as they lead The Let My People Vote (LMPV) campaign, a project of Faith in Florida which invites congregations of faith from across the state of Florida to support giving over 1.4 million Floridians a second chance at redemption.

October 15, 2018

November marks Native American History Month

The Committee on Native American Ministries organized the first Native American Gathering in 2006 at the Life Enrichment Center in Fruitland Park near Leesburg. The April 2019 event is expected to draw more than 70 attendees.

October 04, 2018

Mosaic provides Brevard’s first cold-weather shelter

In addition to giving people a safe, warm place to stay, Mosaic Palm Bay UMC’s shelter is an opportunity for the Brevard Homeless Coalition, an umbrella organization of about 75 agencies, to provide aid for people who are otherwise living on the streets.

September 24, 2018

Creation Care is economic, social justice issue

On a national level, UMW is speaking out on issues like greenhouse gas emissions, which are warming the planet and is bringing attention to the fact that environmental issues are a social justice issue, as well, because it has a greater impact on lower-income and indigenous people.

September 20, 2018

Justice for Our Neighbor’s hope is in God

Florida JFON needs a wide range of volunteers to help set up clinics, serve as drivers and welcome clients. Volunteer attorneys are needed to provide clients with advice and counsel and free representation. If you’re interested, call 786-470-0302 or go to

September 17, 2018

Churches share ideas for Creation Care ministries

Churches can save a lot of money and do something environmentally responsible by switching from plastic plates, utensils, bottled water and shopping bags, as well as paper products, especially for routine events like church dinners.

September 05, 2018

Churches, Family Promise battle Central Florida homelessness

In the shadow of Walt Disney World, which calls itself the happiest place on Earth, there is another, far-different story taking place.

July 02, 2018

Mission U to build on covenant relationship

Mission U takes place at Bethune-Cookman University in Daytona Beach July 12-15 and is open to all wishing to study the covenant relationship practiced by The United Methodist Church.

June 21, 2018

5 other Bible verses for Jeff Sessions to consider

"The problem is not with a politician quoting scripture. Promoting biblical literacy in the public square can be a good thing. The biggest problem is not even with misinterpreting scripture. We are all susceptible to it. The problem is in its misuse, to promote an agenda that is not only antithetical to the Gospel, but is destructive to the highest and best human institution that God created: the family."

May 30, 2018

‘We must disagree well’

Methodist minister from Northern Ireland shares thoughts on peacemaking.

April 06, 2018

Florida pastors inspired by End Racism Rally in D.C.

A half-century has passed since Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was murdered in Memphis, but the racism he sought to erase remains a major social issue.

March 27, 2018

Churches 'show up to be Jesus' in Jacksonville's inner city

Churches in Jacksonville are often challenged to define the role of faith in ministering to disadvantaged neighborhoods. Rev. Juana Jordan, who grew up in the city, says it's really a matter of "showing up and being Jesus" to those in need. Two pastors and one layperson talk about listening and offering a presence in the inner city.

March 27, 2018

Parkland March 'deeply grounded in the way of Jesus'

Christ Church Pastor Brett Opalinski said it was like "sitting across the table from someone and hearing their story of pain." Congregants from the Fort Lauderdale church joined 30,000 others, March 24, in the "March for Our Lives" in Parkland. It was a moment to remember 17 students and faculty who died Feb. 14 and to voice a need for change in current gun legislation.

March 20, 2018

Thousands of United Methodists to join rally against racism

The events begin with a briefing on alleviating racism and injustice in the areas of criminal justice, economic justice, the media, healthcare, voting, civil and human rights, environmental justice, education and immigration. Led by the General Board of Church and Society, the briefing will be held April 3, from 1 to 2 p.m., at the Methodist Building at 100 Maryland Ave., NE, in Washington, D.C.

February 16, 2018

Bishop Carter invites local churches to remember victims through acts of worship

Bishop Ken Carter calls on our congregations to participate in three acts of worship to remember the victims of the tragic school shootings in south Florida.

February 14, 2018

Bishop Ken Carter's statement on Florida school shootings

Bishop Ken Carter issues a statement on the Wednesday school shootings in Parkland, Florida.

February 02, 2018

Black History Month: African-Americans contributing to the Church

African-Americans are a vital part of the tapestry of The United Methodist Church. They have played important roles in the development of the denomination in the United States since 1758. The denomination provides resources, stories, multi-media features and historical perspective to celebrate Black History Month in February.

January 26, 2018

Florida Advocacy Days brings moral voice to state legislators

Carrying a message of hope and persistence for Florida's children in need, this year's Florida Advocacy Days focused on issues that would change lives for the better. Targeted legislation included using civil citations in lieu of jail time for young offenders.

January 09, 2018

United Methodists share MLK’s dream

The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was the face of the African-American civil rights movement ...

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