News

Avalon UMC hosts Thanksgiving Day prayer vigil

published 12/7/2015
By Kara Witherow, Editor Thanksgiving, traditionally a day of food, football, and family, was, for one Albany church, about something a little different this year. More than 100 people spent part of their Thanksgiving giving thanks at Avalon United Methodist Church’s Thanksgiving Day Prayer Vigil.  For nine hours, from 7 a.m. until 4 p.m., members of the church and others from the community prayed in shifts for at least 30 minutes. They prayed for the church, the city, their families, those...

John Wesley’s Aldersgate experience

published 12/7/2015
JOHN WESLEY MOMENTS DAVE HANSON On Wednesday, May 24, 1738, a very troubled John Wesley awoke early in the morning. Around 5 a.m. he opened his Bible and read, “There are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises, even that ye should be partakers of the divine nature.” He opened it again and read, “Thou art not far from the Kingdom of God.”  That afternoon he visited St. Paul’s Cathedral in London. St Paul’s is a massive Gothic building which is 400 feet tall and dominates London’s ...

Nearly 6,000 donors gave $2.8 million through The Advance on Giving Tuesday

published 12/7/2015
United Methodists around the world demonstrated inspiring generosity through their contributions on Dec. 1, 2015 – UMC #GivingTuesday. Nearly 6,000 donors from 27 countries donated $2.8 million through The Advance to support mission and ministries around the world. The denomination’s General Board of Global Ministries matched the first $1 million, building additional incentive for giving. More than 770 projects and missionaries received 8,757 gifts through The Advance, the designated giving ...

Plans underway for 2016 Annual Conference session; new location announced for 2017 Annual Conference session

published 12/7/2015
By Kara Witherow, Editor Plans are well underway for the 2016 South Georgia Annual Conference session, set for June 8 through June 11 in Tifton at the University of Georgia Tifton Campus Conference Center.  “I am excited about the opportunity to continue to grow as disciples of Jesus Christ through conferencing together,” said Bishop James R. King, Jr., episcopal leader of the South Georgia area. “Our Annual Conference is designed in the Wesleyan tradition to the extent that we include fresh...

Prepare

published 12/7/2015
FROM THE BISHOP JAMES R. KING, JR. Hello, beautiful people of South Georgia!  Years ago, while serving as the director of a Wesley Foundation, I was blessed to work as the team chaplain of a college basketball team. I would often find myself reminding discouraged basketball players who did not get playing time in a game, “Listen, your time is coming. The light will turn green and your name will be called to go in the game and you need to make sure your attitude is right so you can play your ...

Sunday Advocate Bulletin Insert - 12/13/2015

published 12/7/2015
Click on the link below to download the Sunday Advocate. Sunday, December 13 The Sunday Advocate is a weekly printable bulletin insert and supplement to the South Georgia Advocate online newspaper. Loaded with South Georgia Conference and UMC news, event information, tips and more, the Sunday Advocate is a printable PDF that can be printed and distributed through local church communication pieces. It will be published and available for download each Monday afternoon. The Sunday Advocate is ...

Joy in leadership

published 12/6/2015
LEADERSHIP REALLY MATTERS ANNE BOSARGE REV. JAY HANSON Last week I, Anne, attended a Children’s Ministry conference with two of my friends and coworkers from The Chapel Ministries. While there, we had the opportunity to ride in a limo bus. The three of us were visibly excited about this opportunity and were snapping pictures and laughing at the ridiculousness that we would be so excited about a limo with neon lights, curved pleather seats and way too many cup holders. After the bus started ...

Sunday Advocate Bulletin Insert - 12/6/2015

published 12/1/2015
Click on the link below to download the Sunday Advocate. Sunday, December 6 The Sunday Advocate is a weekly printable bulletin insert and supplement to the South Georgia Advocate online newspaper. Loaded with South Georgia Conference and UMC news, event information, tips and more, the Sunday Advocate is a printable PDF that can be printed and distributed through local church communication pieces. It will be published and available for download each Monday afternoon. The Sunday Advocate is ...

Events in the South Georgia Conference – 11/16/2015 edition

published 11/23/2015
Free webinar: Local Church Treasurer 101 – Nov. 17 Are you a new local church treasurer or financial secretary? Do you wonder about the various forms you get from the conference office? Do CRSP-DB, CRSP-DC, and UMPIP confuse you? Are you unsure if you need to do a W-2 or 1099 for your church pianist? What sort of report should you give to the church board or finance committee? Would you like to know how your statistics impact your apportionments?  Get answers to all of these questions and more ...

Council of Bishops President: Statement on the Paris attacks

published 11/16/2015
The President of the United Methodist Council of Bishops issued the following statement about the November 13 terrorist attacks in Paris:  John 11:35 Jesus wept. This week, we weep for those in Paris. We weep for the senseless violence. We weep for the innocents whose lives were cut short. We weep for those who are grieving, who are frightened, who are hurting. We weep for those whose hearts are breaking, in France and all over the world. As several world leaders have stated, this is an attack...

GCFA Reports on 2014 Church Statistics, UMData.org

published 11/16/2015
The General Council on Finance and Administration (GCFA) has vetted and released the 2014 United States statistical data on local churches in the U.S. The Data Services Department holds the responsibility for receiving, vetting, and publishing the information each year. GCFA Data Services reports there are over 32,000 local churches. There is a slight decrease in African-American and White membership in the Church. The largest church in the U.S., Windsor Village, located in Houston, Texas, ...

Meaningful experiences and inspiring examples

published 11/16/2015
By Dr. Hal Brady A necessary ingredient of a good home is pictures – pictures placed by meaningful experiences and inspiring examples. I am a dog person, but I have had one cat in my life whose name was White Socks. She was a black cat with four white feet, and I really cared for that cat. When I was eight years old my father sent me to camp for two weeks at Bar Rest Boys Ranch in Warm Springs, Ga. It was basically where you go live with a horse for two weeks and learn to ride or you just don’...

Sunday Advocate Bulletin Insert - 11/22/2015

published 11/16/2015
Click on the link below to download the Sunday Advocate. Sunday, November 22 The Sunday Advocate is a weekly printable bulletin insert and supplement to the South Georgia Advocate online newspaper. Loaded with South Georgia Conference and UMC news, event information, tips and more, the Sunday Advocate is a printable PDF that can be printed and distributed through local church communication pieces. It will be published and available for download each Monday afternoon. The Sunday Advocate is ...

Wesley Foundations, campus ministries stand in the gap

published 11/16/2015
Rev. Michael McCord brings passion and expertise to his new position as Executive Director of the Georgia United Methodist Commission on Higher Education and Campus Ministry. Photo credit: Joseph McBrayer By Kara Witherow, Editor The time between high school and adulthood can be tough, fraught with anxiety, indecision, and uncertainty. It’s a phase of life when young adults often question themselves and their faith and look to peers and friends for support and guidance. And when churches ...

Wesley Monumental UMC’s Joy Circle shares joy of the Lord

published 11/16/2015
By Kara Witherow, Editor About 15 years ago, a handful of women started Wesley Monumental UMC’s Joy Circle group as a way to serve others while socializing.  The group has grown to include more than 20 women, and each month they choose a different service, or mission, to support. “We named it ‘Joy’ because we wanted to have the joy of the Lord with our circle,” said Sue Ellis, an active member of the group. The women recently spent several weeks making washable feminine pads – called Luo ...

Sunday Advocate Bulletin Insert - 11/15/2015

published 11/9/2015
Click on the link below to download the Sunday Advocate. Sunday, November 15 The Sunday Advocate is a weekly printable bulletin insert and supplement to the South Georgia Advocate online newspaper. Loaded with South Georgia Conference and UMC news, event information, tips and more, the Sunday Advocate is a printable PDF that can be printed and distributed through local church communication pieces. It will be published and available for download each Monday afternoon. The Sunday Advocate is ...

Update Your Church's Find-A-Church Profile on UMC.org

published 11/6/2015
Enhanced Find-A-Church features now available One of the most popular pages on our denomination's website, umc.org, is Find-A-Church. The search feature is used by 1,000 people each day looking for a United Methodist Church.  This service is a no-cost opportunity for your church to increase your web presence and outreach. It is well worth your time to update your congregation's Find-A-Church pages.  To make it easier to update your church's profile, United Methodist Communications is offering ...

2015 Advent Resources

published 11/2/2015
A Different Kind of Christmas from Rethink Church  Advent and Christmas are seasons that fill the church calendar with joyous events and services - events to which you want to invite neighbors and others seeking a faith community. Reach literally thousands of households in your community with direct mail customized postcards that carry an inviting and welcoming Advent message. Order yours through our online portal. We will print and mail them to the area you choose — at a fraction of the usual ...

A metric worth measuring

published 11/2/2015
GROWING IN GRACE BEN GOSDEN Church metrics continue to be a moving target of evaluating the health and effectiveness of our churches. I’m reminded of that fact today as our conference journals hit mailboxes and we were bombarded by statistic upon statistic from the local churches across our conference. These numbers (we believe) offer a snapshot of how healthy (or not) our churches are. We look at things like number of new members, professions of faith, baptisms, active small groups, pastor ...

Attention

published 11/2/2015
FROM THE BISHOP JAMES R. KING, JR. Hello, beautiful people of South Georgia!  As I listened to scripture during my devotion time, I was led to tweet this response:  God’s plan is to speak through you today. Listen as the Holy Spirit tells you what to say and do. 1 Cor. 6:19  During my time of prayer and reflection I was reminded of how difficult it is today to get the attention of people even if you are offering them the good news. Historically, as civilization has evolved, options have ...

Court defers review of 'Plan UMC Revised'

published 11/2/2015
By Linda Bloom A ruling on the constitutionality of legislation for a proposed organizational plan for The United Methodist Church has been deferred until May. To make a declaratory decision about one specific piece of proposed legislation, the United Methodist Judicial Council said in Decision 1303, “could intrude” on the full legislative authority of General Conference. The denomination’s top decision-making body meets May 10-20 in Portland, Oregon. Although it has the authority to do so, ...

Denman Evangelism Awards presented

published 11/2/2015
Two South Georgia United Methodists have been awarded UM’s highest honor, the Harry Denman Evangelism Award.  Given through the Conference Witness Team, the Denman Awards recognize outstanding work in the field of evangelism.   Rev. Alan Miller, who retired in June 2015 after serving 38 years in the South Georgia Conference, is the 2015 clergy award recipient. He most recently served Sycamore and Ashburn UMCs. Rev. Miller and his wife, Sandy, now live in North Georgia and serve Mt. Pleasant ...

Pastor's wife gives gift of hope, life

published 11/2/2015
By Kara Witherow, Editor Kathy Roberson is a giver, but one of the best gifts she ever gave wasn’t wrapped in shiny paper or topped with a card.  Instead of bows and balloons, her gift came with needles and nausea, bloodwork and biopsies, a colonoscopy and a CAT scan.  It was the gift of a kidney, a lifesaving gift of hope given to a man she’d never met. Roberson, the wife of Ocilla United Methodist Church pastor Rev. Jay Roberson, first learned of Charlie Merwin’s plight when a mutual ...

Sunday Advocate Bulletin Insert - 11/08/2015

published 11/2/2015
Click on the link below to download the Sunday Advocate. Sunday, November 8 The Sunday Advocate is a weekly printable bulletin insert and supplement to the South Georgia Advocate online newspaper. Loaded with South Georgia Conference and UMC news, event information, tips and more, the Sunday Advocate is a printable PDF that can be printed and distributed through local church communication pieces. It will be published and available for download each Monday afternoon. The Sunday Advocate is ...

The edge of Aldersgate

published 11/2/2015
JOHN WESLEY MOMENTS DAVE HANSON John Wesley was convinced that a person could have a spiritual experience which would give them peace, joy, and victory over sin. His friend and fellow pastor, Peter Bohler the Moravian, had convinced him to study his Bible where he discovered numerous instantaneous conversions in the Book of Acts. Wesley then said, “I see it can happen, but that was back then in the Bible and I just don’t see it happening around me today.”  Peter Bohler said, “I can bring 10 ...

The Methodist Home for Children and Youth announces Macon residents as recipients of highest award

published 11/2/2015
Macon residents Rev. Don and Mary Dale Kea are this year’s recipients of the Methodist Home for Children and Youth’s Heroes, Saints, and Legends award given at Evening of Hope. The award is the highest honor given to those supporters who are instrumental in The Home’s success. Rev. Kea is a graduate of Emory University. As a minister, he served at St. Luke UMC in Columbus, Waverly Hall UMC, Epworth UMC in Columbus, Isle of Hope UMC in Savannah, and Porterfield Memorial UMC in Albany before ...

Sunday Advocate Bulletin Insert - 11/01/2015

published 10/26/2015
Click on the link below to download the Sunday Advocate. Sunday, November 1 The Sunday Advocate is a weekly printable bulletin insert and supplement to the South Georgia Advocate online newspaper. Loaded with South Georgia Conference and UMC news, event information, tips and more, the Sunday Advocate is a printable PDF that can be printed and distributed through local church communication pieces. It will be published and available for download each Monday afternoon. The Sunday Advocate is ...

Fried chicken love

published 10/19/2015
PATHWAY TO HIS PRESENCE B.J. FUNK Having fried chicken once a week was a given at my house. How well I remember coming in from school, starting my homework, and hearing the first sounds of grease popping on the kitchen stove. Soon, the smell of mama’s chicken permeated the air, filling every available space with its mouth-watering aroma. My sister and I practically raced to get the table set, put the ice in the glasses, and pour our sweet tea. I remember which piece each of us liked the best. ...

Sunday Advocate Bulletin Insert - 10/25/2015

published 10/19/2015
Click on the link below to download the Sunday Advocate. Sunday, October 25 The Sunday Advocate is a weekly printable bulletin insert and supplement to the South Georgia Advocate online newspaper. Loaded with South Georgia Conference and UMC news, event information, tips and more, the Sunday Advocate is a printable PDF that can be printed and distributed through local church communication pieces. It will be published and available for download each Monday afternoon. The Sunday Advocate is ...

United Methodist Women gather for 43rd annual meeting

published 10/19/2015
“South Georgia, you are special!”  Those words echoed throughout UMW National President Yvette Richards’ keynote address to the more than 200 women who gathered on Saturday, Oct. 17 for the 43rd annual meeting of the South Georgia United Methodist Women.  “You have a great and wonderful firm foundation that has been laid here in South Georgia,” she said. Speaking to a group who was meeting for only the second time as a six-district organization and who is still feeling the effects of ...

What do we believe?

published 10/19/2015
FOCUS ON THE VISION DENISE WALTON The Apostles’ Creed is the affirmation of faith most widely used by United Methodists. The Apostles’ Creed derives its name from its use in the Christian church from as early as A.D. 150 and the early belief that it was used by the apostles. Beginning in the third century, this creed was used at baptisms by the Roman Catholic Church. Through the years it has been used widely by both Roman Catholics and Protestants as the formative statement of the faith into ...

What illness teaches

published 10/19/2015
Dr. Hal Brady Some years ago noted football coach Lou Holtz said something that most of us can relate to. He was speaking of the troubles we face in our lives. Holtz stated, “I know God doesn’t send us more troubles than we can handle, but sometimes I think he overestimates my ability.” I suppose we all feel that way at times. In our illnesses or troubles, who of us has not wondered if God hasn’t overestimated our ability? Like Lou Holtz and like you, at times, I’ve wondered about that during ...

Sunday Advocate Bulletin Insert - 10/18/2015

published 10/12/2015
Click on the link below to download the Sunday Advocate. Sunday, October 18 The Sunday Advocate is a weekly printable bulletin insert and supplement to the South Georgia Advocate online newspaper. Loaded with South Georgia Conference and UMC news, event information, tips and more, the Sunday Advocate is a printable PDF that can be printed and distributed through local church communication pieces. It will be published and available for download each Monday afternoon. The Sunday Advocate is ...

2015 Conference Journal now available

published 10/8/2015
Redesigned book includes conference business, directories, appointments, reports, and statistical tables The 2015 Journal of the South Georgia Annual Conference is now available for purchase. New this year, those wishing to purchase a Conference Journal will order their copy(ies) online directly from the printer. The cost of the Journal is $20 each plus tax and shipping. Click here to order your copy of the 2015 Journal of the South Georgia Annual Conference.* In addition, the Journal ...

A deeply troubled John Wesley

published 10/5/2015
JOHN WESLEY MOMENTS DAVE HANSON John Wesley returned from Georgia a deeply troubled young minster. His life had been shattered and he felt that he had no faith. Upon his arrival back in London he found a group of German Moravians. The Moravians had impressed him during a storm at sea and had blessed him while in Georgia. He befriended a young Moravian pastor, Peter Bohler. Bohler was 10 years younger than John. He spoke German and a little English. John Wesley spoke English and German. But they...

Bishop Holston urges prayer, giving after historic flooding

published 10/5/2015
South Carolina is feeling the effects of an unprecedented weather event that has caused extensive flooding in the Low Country, Midlands and Pee Dee regions of our state. Interstate closings, failing dams, disintegrating roads, city curfews and extensive evacuations provide an indication of the widening scale of this natural disaster. Under the leadership of Kathy James (Director of Connectional Ministries) and Gregg Varner (Disaster Response Coordinator), our Disaster Response Team has been ...

Changing tides

published 10/5/2015
LEADERSHIP REALLY MATTERS ANNE BOSARGE REV. JAY HANSON I watched a young child, his older brother, their father, and grandfather labor for hours to build a beautiful sand castle. Shortly after its completion, the tide turned and started rushing in to destroy their beautiful structure.  This was the first time the young child had actually gotten to participate in the building of the family sand castle. He could not understand why nature would destroy their work, but his commitment to the ...

Responding to the flooding in South Carolina

published 10/5/2015
Our continued prayers are with the people of South Carolina and surrounding areas in the midst of severe flooding. Below outlines several things as we look to next steps.   A Word from Bishop Holston Bishop Holston, episcopal leader of the South Carolina Annual Conference, released the following letter this morning:   http://www.umcsc.org/home/bishop-holston-urges-prayer-more-after-historic-flooding   Ways to Give There are several ways in which you can make a donation through UMCOR for disaster...

Sex and Twitter

published 10/5/2015
Hello, beautiful people of South Georgia!  Now that I have your attention, it is important for me to share words of care and encouragement as well as a new way of communicating my support for you through the scriptures. Let me begin with the subject of sex. As an annual conference, I believe we are getting stronger and stronger as we grow in our discipleship. We are becoming more Christlike as we love one another and invite others into a relationship with Jesus Christ.  From my first days ...

South Carolina trusting in God, helping neighbors after ‘1,000-year-flood’ catastrophe

published 10/5/2015
By Jessica Brodie, South Carolina Advocate editor COLUMBIA, S.C.—South Carolina is picking up the pieces today after a storm so catastrophic South Carolina’s governor called it a “1,000-year flood.” The storm left a massive chunk of the state between Columbia and Charleston underwater, with parts of the Lowcountry getting more than two feet of rainwater and Columbia up to 16 inches. As of press time, at least nine were dead, some drowning in submerged vehicles, including a South Carolina ...

Southwest District drills well, helps supply clean water and hope to village

published 10/5/2015
By Kara Witherow, Editor A community of almost 50 people near Leon, Nicaragua today has clean, running water thanks, in part, to 10 short-term missionaries from the Southwest District and the South Georgia Conference of The United Methodist Church. From Aug. 29 through Sept. 5, the team of 10 went on the Southwest District’s first foreign mission trip. The group traveled to a remote area about 60 miles from the country’s capital of Managua where they drilled a well with Living Water ...

Sunday Advocate Bulletin Insert - 10/11/2015

published 10/5/2015
Click on the link below to download the Sunday Advocate. Sunday, October 11 The Sunday Advocate is a weekly printable bulletin insert and supplement to the South Georgia Advocate online newspaper. Loaded with South Georgia Conference and UMC news, event information, tips and more, the Sunday Advocate is a printable PDF that can be printed and distributed through local church communication pieces. It will be published and available for download each Monday afternoon. The Sunday Advocate is ...

Harvest Church to host Compassion International Mobile Experience

published 10/1/2015
Harvest Church in Warner Robins, GA invites you and your congregation to tour the Compassion Experience on its campus Oct. 16-19, 2015. This is a free community-wide event that brings visitors into true stories of life in the developing world. The Compassion Experience features replicas of the homes of two Compassion children who live in extreme poverty on two separate continents. Each guest receives an iPod and headphones and takes a 20-minute, multi-media tour - walking through homes, ...

Sunday Advocate Bulletin Insert - 10/4/2015

published 9/28/2015
Click on the link below to download the Sunday Advocate. Sunday, October 4 The Sunday Advocate is a weekly printable bulletin insert and supplement to the South Georgia Advocate online newspaper. Loaded with South Georgia Conference and UMC news, event information, tips and more, the Sunday Advocate is a printable PDF that can be printed and distributed through local church communication pieces. It will be published and available for download each Monday afternoon. The Sunday Advocate is ...

15-year-old gives instead of receives on her birthdays

published 9/21/2015
By Kara Witherow, Editor When you’re 15, birthdays usually mean presents. Gift cards, cash, and cake usually top the list of most-requested items, but not for 15-year-old Sae McIlrath. For the past four years, McIlrath, a member of The Ridge United Methodist Church in Columbus, has celebrated her birthday not by receiving presents, but by giving them away.  In lieu of gifts, for her 15th birthday, which she celebrated on June 21, McIlrath asked her family and friends to donate $15 to “...

2016 General Conference petition submission deadline looming

published 9/21/2015
The deadline to submit petitions for consideration by the 2016 General Conference is Oct. 13, 2015. According to church law, “Any organization, clergy member, or lay member of The United Methodist Church may petition the General Conference...” Detailed instructions for submitting a petition are available on the General Conference website at www.gc2016.umc.org. Petitions must be typed and may be submitted through the General Conference website, by postal mail, or via email to petitions@umpublis...

Are we there yet?

published 9/21/2015
FOCUS ON THE VISION DENISE WALTON The Office of Connectional Ministries seeks to advance the kingdom of God by utilizing the tools of communication in diverse and creative ways. The conference website; individual consults with clergy and laity; local church, district and conference trainings; webinars; social media; promotional program materials; conference calls; and video conferencing represent a sample of the annual conference tools of communication. We are constantly working to communicate ...

Harper's Chapel UMC reaches out to community with tea party

published 9/21/2015
By Kara Witherow, Editor More than 80 women gathered at Harper’s Chapel United Methodist Church in Baxley on Saturday, Aug. 22 for a day of learning, fellowship, fun, and worship. With a special tea party theme and outfitted in their finest dresses, hats, gloves, and jewels, the ladies celebrated womanhood and the significance of who they are as women in the body of Christ. Long-dreamed-about, the ladies’ tea party was finally realized under Rev. Abra Lattany-Reed’s leadership and guidance....

Quantifiable, results-based program budgets

published 9/21/2015
By Dr. Derek McAleer, Director of Administrative Services I’ve been involved in creating church budgets since the mid-1970s. Like many of you, I have seen the highs and lows of income, expenses, planning, and inspiration. I’ve seen new programs budgeted which had great impact on people’s lives. I’ve seen groups that haven’t spent their budgets in three years throw major fits when it was suggested their budgets be reduced. I’ve seen churches simply add new salary and apportionment figures to ...

Sunday Advocate Bulletin Insert - 9/27/2015

published 9/21/2015
Click on the link below to download the Sunday Advocate. Sunday, September 27 The Sunday Advocate is a weekly printable bulletin insert and supplement to the South Georgia Advocate online newspaper. Loaded with South Georgia Conference and UMC news, event information, tips and more, the Sunday Advocate is a printable PDF that can be printed and distributed through local church communication pieces. It will be published and available for download each Monday afternoon. The Sunday Advocate is ...

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