Dear South East District Friends,
Advent greetings to each of you!
First, I want to take this opportunity to thank you. This fall has been incredibly busy in our churches. I have visited your worship services, pumpkin patches, fall festivals, and anniversary celebrations. You have attended charge conferences in great numbers. Your level of enthusiasm and determination for the return of in-person worship, “regular” activities, and for new and innovative ministries is to be commended. We know that the pandemic itself as well as its effects are not behind us yet. However, you are finding faithful ways to continue being the church in the midst of these challenging times. Thank you for your faithfulness, good cheer, and hope.
In this season of Advent I am reflecting on what it means for God to “make all things new.” The anticipation of the birth of our Savior is the anticipation of a new way of being, of relating, and of being loved by our God. The birth of Jesus was a rebirth for humanity. Life in Christ is a constant rebirth, being made new by our Creator.
How is God making all things new in your life today? What do you pray might be made new as we prepare for the coming of Christ? Is there a part of your life or the life of your church that you wish to offer to God for a rebirth, a remaking, a reshaping? We can ask for just this as we await the birth of our Savior.
In visiting our churches this fall I sensed a profound desire to hear and feel and breathe the Holy Spirit. This is often hard to do as we busily lead our ministries, outreach, and worship. I am convinced, though, that our communities (inside and outside of the church) are inspired when they experience their leaders seeking the guidance of the Holy Spirit in our business, our worship, our ministries, and as we gather in community. It is a reminder that we are not alone, not in total control, and that we serve a God who came to live among us. Emmanuel…God is with us! God, indeed, remains with us.
During this season, seek the gift of the Holy Spirit as you prepare for a child’s birth, and a rebirth of our own. God will continue to make all things new, I am convinced of this.
May the peace of Christ be with you today and always,
Cynthia D. Weems
Anti-Racism Representative Meeting
Led by Dr. Judith Pierre-Okerson & Dr. Brett Opalinski
Thursday. December 9, 2021
7:00 p.m. via ZOOM
This is the first meeting for all local church anti-racism representatives. We look forward to seeing you!
To sign up for this meeting please CLICK HERE.
Deacon and Extension Minister Annual Reports
Due December 31
Clergy serving as Deacons in a local church or community setting continue to be linked to the annual conference though a number of means. Each Deacon is directly related to a charge conference and may fulfill certain roles in that context. And, each Deacon gives an annual account of their ministry. Click HERE to go to the Office of Clergy Excellence page for the Deacon Annual Report.
Extension Ministry Clergy
Clergy serving in appointments beyond the local church continue to be linked to the annual conference though a number of means. Each extension ministry clergy is directly related to a charge conference and may fulfill certain ministerial roles in that context. And, each clergy in an extension ministry appointment gives an annual account of his/her ministry. Click HERE to to go the Office of Clergy Excellence page for the Extension Ministry Annual Report.
Staff Parish Relations Committee (SPRC) Training
January 25, 2022
The Staff Parish Relations Committee (SPRC) Training will provide you with the effective tools needed in your responsibilities. Dr. Cynthia Weems our District Superintendent will facilitate.
Cokesbury offers guidelines for leading your congregation. Click HERE to see the various committee specific resources.
Pastors, SPRC Chairpersons and Committee Members, and Lay Leaders are encouraged to attend this important training event. Click the link below to sign up to attend this important meeting. This meeting is especially important to those who have just been elected into this new leadership role effective January 1, 2022. We will send the ZOOM link later in January.
2022 Conference Wide
Local Church Trainings!
The conference is offering Local Church Training over six consecutive weeks! Each subject will have three opportunities for you to attend: Tuesdays 2:00pm & 6:30pm and Saturdays 9:00am. The material will be the same for all three opportunities. These trainings will run from February 8 until March 19, 2022.
For additional information about these opportunities, and to register for the time that is convenient for YOU CLICK HERE! Registration will open soon. Please share these training dates and times with your church leaders. Cokesbury sells Guidebooks for many different leadership roles in the United Methodist Church. Click HERE to see what they offer.
Apportionments and End of Year Payments
Apportionment payments for 2021 must be received in the lockbox at Regions Bank or paid online by Monday, January 10, 2022. This is not a postmarked by date but is the last day by which monies must be received in the Conference or our bank lockbox to be included in 2021 apportionments receipts. Any payments received after that date will be applied to 2022 apportionments. Any payments received between January 1 and January 10 must be clearly marked as to which year they are to be applied.
All apportionment payments should be accompanied by a completed Remittance Report.
The Remittance Report is located on our website. Either click on this link below:
To pay online go to the conference website. Click Here to take you to that page
Note: To be considered a 100% connectional church in the Florida Annual Conference Journal, 100% of 2021 apportionments must be received by January 10, 2022, and all outstanding Ministry Protection and Health and Benefits obligations must be received by December 31, 2021. Thus far, the South East District is going very strong this year!
Year-end Local Church Statistics
Forms are available online beginning January 1, 2022. (Table 1, Table 2, Table 3). Please complete these online by 5:00 pm Friday, February 4, 2022. Click Here for instructions page.
Church and Pastor Annual Profiles
Due by January 31
Church Profile – reviewed and updated annually. These forms are to be reviewed and updated annually by all church SPR Committees and all clergy in the Florida Conference. All church SPR Committees must update online annually and may begin after December 1. The Church Profile deadline requires it be completed online no later than one week prior to the pastor’s DS consultation, if having. The final date to update the Church Profile is January 31, 2022. Click here for the Church and Pastor Profiles start page.
Pastor Profile – reviewed and updated annually. All pastors must update online annually and may begin after December 1, 2021. The Pastor Profile deadline requires it to be completed online no later than one week prior to the DS consultation. Though you may not anticipate a move, it is important that both the Pastor Profile and Church Profile be current and up to date at the first appointment-making session of the Cabinet. The reports should be an honest reflection of the pastoral ministry and the profile of the church. The final date to update the Pastor Profile is January 31, 2022. Click here for the Church and Pastor Profiles start page.
Click HERE for the detailed instructions for accessing both the Church and Pastor Profiles. Follow the step by step instructions to access the appropriate profile. The final date to update Profiles is January 31, 2022.
Annual Conference 2022– Get ready to see one another!
Get ready to see one another!
The Florida Annual Conference 2022 session will be back to an in-person event and will be held on June 9-11 (a general schedule will be released in the new year) on the campus of Florida Southern College in Lakeland. The theme for Annual Conference 2022 will be: Rebuilding the Church, Re-membering the Body: Creating a Spiritual Home for All.
“We have been through an extraordinary season with many complexities and constraints, and all of this has kept us from the joy of coming together, and we likely have taken this gift for granted,” said Bishop Ken Carter. “I am excited about the 2022 Annual Conference, and I believe God will bless us during these days.”
Thanks to vaccinations and proper protocols, we feel confident that an in-person gathering can occur in June of next year. While we will still offer a livestream option for those not able to be present in Lakeland, voting on Conference matters will only be available to in-person lay and clergy members.
As we have for the past two years, your Annual Conference planning team will continue to follow state and local health guidelines, including those of Florida Southern College as our hosts. It is possible that mask-wearing and social distancing may still be recommended so please watch for more details as we draw closer to June.
For questions, please contact email@example.com.
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Florida Annual Conference Planning Team
Pastors: Please forward this to your lay member(s) to Annual Conference and be sure they are entered on the church dashboard!
2022 South East DCOM Dates
dCOM Chair: Rev. David Range firstname.lastname@example.org
DS: Rev. Cynthia Weems email@example.com
dCOM Registrar: Elizabeth Flynn firstname.lastname@example.org
Monday, February 22
Local Pastor Renewals
Tuesday, April 20
Provisional 1st run/Local Pastors/Certs
Tuesday, August 31
Provisional 2nd run/Recerts
Tuesday, November 2
Note: Certification and Local Pastor applicants may apply at any of the dates above.
To schedule a dCOM interview, email Elizabeth Flynn, District Registrar at email@example.com. Click HERE to read about the Candidacy Process.
January 14, 2022 - Deadline December 1, 2022
July 8, 2022 - Deadline June 1, 2022
Please see the Candidacy Retreat Checklist to ensure all necessary items are completed. The checklist outlines all the steps needed for Candidacy.
Lands of the Bible Cruise
Guest Speaker Bishop Ken Carter 2022
September 22, 2022
Join us along with Guest Speaker Bishop Ken Carter on a 13 day Lands of the Bible. Cruise aboard the Celebrity Apex, starting at $4,698* from New York, NY departing on September 22, 2022. Journey to places such as Rome, Galilee, Jerusalem, Ephesus, Bethlehem, Athens, and much more! Click HERE for details.
District Office Closed for Holidays
Our District Office will be closed on the following dates: December 22-24 & 27-31, 2021