Dear South East District Friends,
I write to you this day with two words on my heart. 1. Grateful. I am grateful for the sun that shines, for dry floors in my home and for our churches that worshiped yesterday without the disruption of storms, leaks and power outages. 2. Convicted. I am convicted in my need to turn my gratitude into action as we utilize our resources to assist our sisters and brothers whose lives and sacred worship spaces are devasted due to Hurricane Ian.
Perhaps you have felt these and other feelings over the last several days. It has been excruciating to watch the news and read developments on the west coast of our state as well as countries dear to us like Cuba. Our Florida Conference leaders in disaster response have been doing a tremendous job of assessing the damage, supporting the communities and directing our response. As many as 150 United Methodist churches sustained damage during this storm, not to mention parsonages, homes, schools and businesses in our many communities.
Please be on the lookout for ways you can help. Currently, I encourage you to receive an offering in your local church for our Florida Fund. The link is here: Hurricane Ian Response and Recovery (brtapp.com) Donations may also be made to UMCOR. The work of UMCOR is intended to support natural disasters all around the world and Florida will receive support from UMCOR. The Florida Conference fund will ensure we can offer support to churches and persons who fall outside of the parameters of UMCOR support. And, ultimately, our greatest hope is that we can raise significant dollars to provide as much relief as possible. Working together, we can do this!
Please do not hesitate to reach out with specific questions for how you or your church can help. We will be forthcoming as we learn of Conference efforts to donate, volunteer, assist and collaborate.
May our prayers continue for the people most in need.
Grace and peace,
Cynthia D. Weems
The 2022 Charge/Church conference forms are available on the Florida Conference website. Please go to this link: Annual Charge Conference Forms.
Here you can find our charge conference schedule for this year: SE Schedule
Don’t forget the District JFON Challenge (see flyer below). Thank you to all of the churches who have already made your donation.
The following reports are to be emailed to Norma Sayago at least one week prior to your CC: SED Voting Matters Agenda, 2023 Clergy Compensation form(s), Housing Resolution(s), and Accountable Reimbursement Policy (ies). Signatures are not required at this time. Here is the link for Norma's email address: email@example.com
Also, deacons beyond the local church and Extension Minister's Annual Reports are not part of Charge Conference forms. Their Annual Reports are due December 31 of each year. Click HERE for the Office of Clergy Excellence page with those details.
If you have any questions, please contact Norma via email or phone. firstname.lastname@example.org / 305-445-9136.
Hurricane Ian Response & Recovery
The Florida Conference of The United Methodist Church is walking alongside our brothers & sisters devasted by Hurricane Ian. Your prayers and financial support are welcome to assist with our response to this disaster. This is how you can help:
- Pray. Continue to lift the impacted in prayer.
- Give online at FLUMC.ORG/IAN. 100% of gifts will be used to support the mission of local churches most directly affected by the storm and will be distributed by the cabinet under the supervision of the Conference Committee on Finance & Administration.
- Collect cleaning kits. Click here for a list of supplies and instructions on how to assemble a cleaning kit. Please be prepared to hold on to the kits until further notice from the Disaster Recovery Ministry.
- Call the Disaster Recovery call center. Dial 855-CAT-FUMC to volunteer or share post-storm community needs.
- Share this information in your churches and communities. Click here for a graphic that you can download and share.
Free Webinar — Register Now
Improving Worship Attendance in a Post Pandemic World
Learn best practices your church can use to increase in-person and online worship attendance.
Tuesday, October 25, Noon-1:30 p.m. Eastern
For most congregations, attracting new people was a challenge even before the pandemic. Now, churches must focus not only on the continuing need to reach new people but also on reconnecting with the sizable percentage of those who attended regularly before COVID-19 but have not yet returned to the pews.
Join Rev. Dr. F. Douglas Powe Jr., Rev. Dr. Lovett H. Weems Jr., and Rev. Dr. Jessica Anschutz for this timely and important webinar to learn ways to improve your congregation’s in-person and online worship attendance.
October is Pastor Appreciation Month
We would like to remind our laity that October is Pastor Appreciation Month. Here is a link to some helpful resources:
Thank you for all that you do to support your pastor!
Conversations on Race
Join us for a monthly half-hour conversation with various speakers and share your thoughts about anti-racism efforts in our Conference. CLICK HERE for more information.
Webinar Schedule (All sessions begin at 12 noon)
- October 5: How to Implement Anti-Racism Ministries I
- November 2: How to Implement Anti-Racism Ministries II
- December 7: Celebrating Anti-Racism Ministries in the Florida Conference
Be ready! Youth 2023 is happening next July in Daytona Beach.
For more information, please go to this link: https://www.umcyoungpeople.org/youth2023
MORE Resources for your church! Check them out...
8 steps to declutter and make the best impression:
5 types of church visitors: Are you ready for them?
From online worship to online ministry:
Rebuilding Church Choirs after a Pandemic:
Discipleship Ministries offers Worship Planning tools:
Discipleship Ministries | Worship (umcdiscipleship.org)
This month’s: Discipleship Ministries | Equipping World-Changing Disciples (umcdiscipleship.org)
Missional Vital Signs Reporting Changes
Missional Vital Signs (MVS) for the local church is newly updated (April 2022). It important to remember that these numbers represent people and the vitality of the local church. They are indicators of the behaviors that produce them, and this tool can be used to discern the health of the church – what works, what does not, where should we make changes, and most importantly, how can we bring more disciples to Christ? The local church should continuously be aware of their MVS’s so that they may evaluate and make adjustments. Healthy churches are aware of their stats and can quickly adapt.
This information is gathered weekly and may be reported weekly or monthly through the church dashboard online by the “MVS Reporter” designated by the church and updated in the church dashboard. There is now the ability to enter missing data over the previous two years.
If your church receives funding (equitable compensation) that is contingent on turning in your data by the 10th of the month, know that you have grace. We sent an email with that explanation to those churches.
Please click here for a helpful video overview and guide sheet of the New MVS Weekly Reporting site.
Explanation of MVS’s
MVS data gathering sheet (PDF)
MVS Weekly Reporting Guide Sheet (PDF)
Tracking Online Video Views (PDF)