News

Bishop's Appeal: Special Christmas Offering

published 11/19/2018
When disaster strikes, the United Methodist connection comes alive. The South Georgia Conference has seen this over and over again in the past month as people have responded to our needs here in South Georgia following the devastation caused by Hurricane Michael. Our connection is at work thanks to your overwhelming generosity. Even as we continue down our own path of recovery in the southwest pocket of our conference, we also want to extend a helping hand to our brothers and sisters in the ...

Consider end-of-the-year giving to the new Conference Center

published 11/19/2018
Over the years I have found that the month of December is a time of incredible generosity. As we celebrate God’s gift of Jesus, our church members find fulfillment in giving of themselves and their resources. One special opportunity is “end-of-the-year giving.” This occurs when our members determine that they want to make a special gift before Dec. 31. These gifts may be stocks, bonds, property, and/or cash. A gift to the new Conference Center of the South Georgia Conference would be a great ...

Giving thanks in all circumstances: A Thanksgiving message from Bishop Bryan

published 11/19/2018
Is it really possible to “give thanks in all circumstances…,” as St. Paul says in 1 Thessalonians 5:18? Ask the children who live in the Methodist Children’s Homes all over South Georgia. Recently Sherrill and I had the privilege of attending a Thanksgiving Banquet at the main campus in Macon. After a delicious meal the children shared their personal thanksgivings: for the love they receive from the staff, for those who are like parents to them on a daily basis, for God, for Jesus Christ, and ...

Parish nurse serves storm-damaged community

published 11/19/2018
By Kara Witherow, Editor Debbie Weaver has never seen disaster like the kind Hurricane Michael wrought on the residents of her rural community. A parish nurse at Reynolds Chapel United Methodist Church, she’s used to blood pressure checks, teaching CPR, explaining medications, and the like. But Hurricane Michael, which nearly destroyed Donalsonville, also changed Weaver’s ministry and how she serves her patients. With more than 700 homes in the community, Weaver can’t visit each resident ...

Thankful for God's blessings

published 11/19/2018
OUR CONNECTION MATTERS NITA CRUMP I will exalt you, my God the King; I will praise your name for ever and ever. Every day I will praise you and extol your name for ever and ever. Psalm 145:1-2 Thanksgiving is right around the corner. Many of us are planning to spend time with family as we eat turkey and dressing in copious quantities. Many of us will start our Thanksgiving meal with a list of all the things for which we are thankful. Many of us will take at least a little time to count our ...

Thanksgiving

published 11/19/2018
Dr. Hal Brady The late Dr. Norman Vincent Peale, former minister of Marble Collegiate Church in New York City, once said, “Do not always ask when you pray, but instead affirm that God’s blessings are being given and spend most of your prayer giving thanks.” What marvelous wisdom! Gratitude is the key to meaningful faith and joyful living. One of the unique things about the Thanksgiving season is that it is not so filled with hype. It’s just a special time to reflect with family and friends on ...

UMCOR school kits, church volunteers help students’ return to school

published 11/19/2018
By Kara Witherow, Editor Children returning to Seminole County’s schools Monday, Nov. 5 received a surprise when they sat at their desks. Not only were their schools – damaged by Hurricane Michael – repaired, but on each desk sat a bag full of needed school supplies. Early that morning, before school began, a team of volunteers from Friendship United Methodist Church descended on the schools. In a flurry of activity, they unpacked four pallets of boxes, hustled from room to room, placed one ...

Updated Conference history book chronicles accomplishments of South Georgia UMC churches

published 11/19/2018
By Kara Witherow, Editor In its 152-year history, the South Georgia Conference of The United Methodist Church has accomplished some amazing things, said Anne Packard, curator of the Moore Methodist Museum and conference archivist. In an effort to document what God has done in and through South Georgia United Methodists, Packard, along with historians from each local South Georgia church, has compiled and published an updated history of the conference, “History of the South Georgia Conference ...

Advent Resources

published 11/13/2018
2018 Advent Resources Advent/Christmas We hope the resources will help jumpstart your planning and give you new ideas for this season. _________________________________________ N  U  R  T  U  R  E Take the Online Advent Quiz: (Download), print and share the Advent Quiz with your church, family & friends!  Chuck Knows Church: The Advent Wreath (Video 3 minutes) New Ways to Celebrate Advent With Kids Christmas Gifts That Won't Break: A Children's Advent Study by James W. Moore. Coloring Through ...

#GivingTuesday: Joining together to give BIG on Nov 27

published 11/12/2018
It’s hard to believe the holidays are right around the corner. That means it’s time once again for UMC #GivingTuesday. In 2017, millions of people from 150 countries raised over $300,000,000 on Giving Tuesday. This year on November 27 United Methodists will once again come together as a part of that movement to advance vital ministries around the world. There are hundreds of ways you can #GiveUMC. | Resources are also available to help you promote Giving Tuesday. To make a big day even BIGGER, ...

Alive Together in Relationships

published 11/5/2018
FROM THE BISHOP R. LAWSON BRYAN Last Sunday I had the opportunity to preach at Lovely Lane Chapel on the grounds of Epworth By The Sea. What an beautiful, worshipful setting. The sermon was based on the Old Testament lectionary passage, Ruth 1:1-18. After the death of her husband and two sons, Naomi feels that God certainly has abandoned her. Yet, God is as close to her as her daughter-in-law, Ruth. In the midst of tragedy and death, Ruth, the Moabite, says to Naomi, the Hebrew, “Where you go, ...

Alive Together in Storm Recovery

published 11/5/2018
In the month since Hurricane Michael ripped through Southwest Georgia as a category 3 hurricane, the South Georgia Conference has experienced so many ways in which we are Alive Together in the World. Allison Lindsey, associate Director of Connectional Ministries, and Luis Morales, Disaster Response Coordinator, have been coordinating response efforts across South Georgia. “I am thankful for Allison and Luis, for their tireless service, and for their dedication to our annual conference and our ...

Arthur J. Moore Museum obtains notice: John Wesley gets married

published 11/5/2018
JOHN WESLEY MOMENTS DAVE HANSON Jay Jordan from St Marys, Georgia recently gave me a rare copy of the February 1751 Gentlemen’s Magazine from London, England. Buried in the small print on an inside page of this magazine was a small notice which indicated that John Wesley, Methodist preacher, had married a merchant’s widow. It did not mention the bride’s name, but did say that a certain amount was given as her dowry. The important magazine has been donated to the Arthur J. Moore Methodist ...

Magnolia Manor resident finds joy in sewing, serving

published 11/5/2018
By Kara Witherow, Editor Charlotte Petty loves to sew. The Magnolia Manor of St. Simons Island resident has been sewing and creating “all her life” and finds joy and fulfilment in crafting handmade items and helping others. She sees value in everything, never throwing away a scrap of yarn or piece of fabric. “My motto is ‘Waste not, want not,’ so if I see a use for something, I do it,” she said. Another of her guiding principles is “See a need, meet a need.” While perhaps unspoken, that ...

UMW gather in Warner Robins for annual meeting

published 11/5/2018
By Kara Witherow, Editor A hundred or so United Methodist Women gathered in Trinity United Methodist Church’s sanctuary Oct. 20 to join with their sisters and hear an encouraging word about being women of service, faith, and persistence. “We are treading on holy ground,” South Georgia United Methodist Women president Carol Banks, who had just recently returned from a UMW Unbuntu Journey to Peru, said to the women gathered in Warner Robins. Meeting under the theme, “Sacred Spaces of Service,” ...

Grace UMC celebrates successful SBC21 program, church sesquicentennial

published 11/4/2018
By Kara Witherow, Editor On Sunday, Nov. 11, Grace United Methodist Church in Brunswick will celebrate its sesquicentennial with the theme, “Rooted in the past with a vision for our future.” They will celebrate with an anniversary banquet Friday, Nov. 9 and with a church anniversary worship hour Sunday, Nov. 11, with retired Coastal District Superintendent Dr. Wayne Moseley preaching. The church, which began Nov. 18, 1868, also has much to celebrate as they conclude their two-year involvement...

Students to tour campus ministries, colleges during 2019 Campus Crawl

published 11/4/2018
By Kara Witherow, Editor Emma Chloe Arnold has had her sights set on college since middle school. The 16-year-old, a junior at Seminole County High School in Donalsonville, toured more than a dozen college campuses last February as part of Campus Crawl, a bus tour designed to introduce ninth through twelfth grade students to Georgia’s United Methodist campus ministries, colleges, and, universities. Sponsored and organized by the Georgia UMCommission on Higher Education and Collegiate ...

Lifting our hearts in prayer for synagogue victims

published 10/28/2018
In the wake of a deadly mass shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue on Saturday, Bishop Lawson Bryan joins with Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi as she calls on all United Methodists to be in silent, reflective prayer for 17 minutes for the next seven days for the Pittsburgh Jewish communities. (Read her message here.)   A Word from Bishop Bryan As thousands of South Georgia Methodists attend worship today, we lift our hearts to God in grief over the attack on Jews at a Pittsburgh synagogue yesterday....

A note from Bishop Bryan: Alive Together in Storm Recovery

published 10/15/2018
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ, Our church members and our pastors in the areas most affected by Hurricane Michael are hard at work checking on those in their churches and communities. Rev. Tammy Fincannon is a good example of what I am seeing: faithful pastors tending to the needs of their church and communities. Tammy serves as pastor of Reynolds Chapel UMC which is located at Lake Seminole in the area where Hurricane Michael first entered South Georgia. The wooded area around the lake ...

Arca de Fuego worships in new home

published 10/15/2018
By Kara Witherow, Editor Sunday, Aug. 26 was a day of celebration for Arca de Fuego, the Hispanic congregation of Americus First United Methodist Church, as they opened the doors of their new facility. About 270 members of the Hispanic congregation gathered in the downtown Americus location and sang songs, worshiped, and thanked God for their new home. While the congregation is 15 years old, Sunday, Aug. 26 was their first service in the Clarence Jorden Center on Habitat for Humanity’s campus...

Delegation hosts first listening post session

published 10/15/2018
By Kara Witherow, Editor More than 30 people gathered at The Chapel in Brunswick Thursday, Oct. 11 as the South Georgia Conference’s General Conference delegation hosted its first of three listening post sessions. An opportunity for South Georgia clergy and laity to share their thoughts and take part in the Way Forward conversation, the listening post was hosted by Rev. Jay Hanson, a member of the delegation and lead pastor of The Chapel Ministries in Brunswick. Rev. Hanson did not make a ...

Excitement is contagious!

published 10/15/2018
OUR CONNECTION MATTERS NITA CRUMP And now the word of the Lord is ringing out from you to people everywhere … for wherever we go we find people telling us about your faith in God. We don’t need to tell them about it, for they keep talking about the wonderful welcome you gave us … 1 Thessalonians 1:8-9 (NLT) Do you ever get excited about something? Did you watch a college football game last Saturday?  I know, I know. When I scream at the television, no one on the field can hear me. But I get ...

Hear the corn grow

published 10/15/2018
PATHWAY TO HIS PRESENCE B.J. FUNK Hearing corn grow? For real? I thought it was a myth or some old wives’ tale. So, I went to a video on the Internet and actually heard the corn growing. Like soft lightning or better yet, like a continuous crackle. Fascinating! So what does it sound like? Interestingly enough, it sounds remarkably similar to the sounds made when corn breaks. It seems that plant growth involves millions of tiny breakage events.  These breakage events trigger the plant to rush ...

Neighbors help neighbors after Hurricane Michael slams Southwest Georgia

published 10/15/2018
CLICK HERE TO VIEW ALL DISASTER RESPONSE RELATED NEWS By Kara Witherow, Editor The Southwest District bore the brunt of Hurricane Michael’s wrath in Georgia as the storm slammed into the area last Wednesday afternoon and evening as a Category 3 hurricane. Michael brought 115 mph winds and downed trees and power lines throughout the region. Homes, churches, and businesses were damaged and destroyed. Cotton, peanut, and pecan crops, which were not yet fully harvested, were decimated. But ...

Assessing Hurricane Michael damage in South Georgia

published 10/11/2018
Many residents of Southwest Georgia are reeling today, their homes and communities damaged and devastated by Hurricane Michael. Hurricane Michael, which hit the area yesterday afternoon and evening after slamming into the Florida Panhandle, ravaged much of the area for hours. The wind was intense, uprooting trees, destroying buildings, and decimating crops. Hundreds of thousands are without power, and several counties are in a utility crisis, without power or water. The Conference Disaster ...

South Georgia stands ready; prays for those in the path of Hurricane Michael

published 10/10/2018
Dear South Georgia Conference, While we watch closely the track of Hurricane Michael, I want to assure our annual conference that our South Georgia Disaster Response Team is already standing by and ready to respond.  Over the past two years our area has experienced hurricanes, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding. Our members have risen to the occasion by providing disaster funds and Early Response teams to other areas of the country and to those at home in South Georgia. Thanks to the ...

Alive Together in the World – including Africa!

published 10/1/2018
FROM THE BISHOP R. LAWSON BRYAN Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ, We truly are Alive Together in the World! I write that as I sit here in Zimbabwe, in southern Africa, having traveled here as a member of the General Commission on Religion and Race (GCORR). In addition to serving the conference to which we are assigned, bishops also have responsibilities for service in the larger church. Because it is a privilege to represent the South Georgia Conference and the Southeastern Jurisdiction, I...

Annual Conference 2019: Hotel room blocks now open

published 10/1/2018
We are busy preparing for the 2019 Annual Conference Session, which will be held at The Columbus Georgia Convention & Trade Center set for June 2-5, 2019. Last year, Bishop Bryan led us in celebrating all the ways we are “Alive Together in Worship.” We also prepared for a year-long emphasis on being “Alive Together in the World” and will continue that celebration at the 2019 Annual Conference Session. I pray that you are finding many ways to reach out to the world in word and deed as you share ...

Grant helps Colquitt UMC become handicap accessible

published 10/1/2018
By Kara Witherow, Editor Misty Hayes is a fiercely independent woman, a busy volunteer who spends time serving at Colquitt United Methodist Church’s food bank, helping with the church’s children and youth ministries, and participating in Colquitt’s Swamp Gravy folk-life play. Nothing stops Hayes, says Colquitt UMC pastor Rev Scott Stanfill, except the church’s door. Hayes, who uses a wheelchair, was born with a progressive muscle disease that is a type of muscular dystrophy. The church’s door...

If you could ask anything, what would it be?

published 10/1/2018
LEADERSHIP REALLY MATTERS ANNE BOSARGE REV. JAY HANSON We’ve been a bit intrigued by questions lately. I guess you could say we’re kind of question nerds. We began talking about the power of Jesus’ questions in our last article, “What is Jesus asking you?” As we reflect on the power of Jesus’ questions in our lives, we’re prompted to ask ourselves, “If I could ask anything, what would it be?”  I recently read that the best question-askers are actually 4-year old girls. They ask an average of ...

South Georgia team serves at Sager Brown, helps with UMCOR’s disaster response efforts

published 10/1/2018
By Kara Witherow, Editor Last month, nine South Georgia United Methodists traveled to Baldwin, La. to work in the United Methodist Committee on Relief’s (UMCOR) Sager Brown supply depot. There they got an up-close look at how the agency responds before and after disasters. The trip, sponsored by the Conference Outreach team, was organized by Allison Lindsey, associate director of Connectional Ministries and led by Susan Hughes, a member of Central United Methodist Church in Fitzgerald. Hughes ...

UM connection, technology join families, transcend time zones

published 10/1/2018
By Kara Witherow, Editor It’s not often that Russian is spoken with a Southern accent, but on Sunday, Sept. 16, members of Svetlana Thompson’s family in central Russia heard “приветственная семья – Welcome, family of Lana,” in a distinctly South Georgia drawl. From half a world away, they watched via livestream as Rev. Ted Goshorn, pastor of Eastman United Methodist Church, welcomed congregants to worship and led the congregation through the liturgy from The United Methodist Hymnal. Svetlana ...

A word from Bishop Bryan: My reflections on a recent joint meeting

published 9/24/2018
The Appointive Cabinet and the Compass Group met together September 10, 2018, at Wesley Glen Ministries in Macon for a collaborative session focusing on the many initiatives they are jointly sponsoring for the South Georgia Conference.   This meeting means a great deal to me because it represents the culmination of two years of work in team building among the members of both groups. We have such talented, devoted disciples of Christ on our conference staff. My personal mission has been to ...

Connectional Ministries September Toolkit: Advent/Christmas Resources

published 9/24/2018
Each month the Office of Connectional Ministries offers a toolkit which includes a wealth of resources focusing on a different theme to resource your local church in nurture, outreach, witness and advocacy ministries.​ During Advent, we prepare for, and anticipate, the coming of Christ. We remember the longing of Jews for a Messiah and our own longing for, and need of, forgiveness, salvation and a new beginning. Even as we look back and celebrate the birth of Jesus in a humble stable in ...

Conference invests in pastors, local churches through On Boarding

published 9/17/2018
By Kara Witherow, Editor Transition is tough, whether it’s getting a new appointment and moving to a new town and church or receiving a new pastor. Getting a jump start to help further the process can be an invaluable tool for all involved. The South Georgia Conference has embraced On Boarding, a corporate technique for getting a fast start in executive leadership through early, candid dialogue, assisted by an outside consultant. A corporate strategy that’s been adapted for ministry settings ...

Responding to Florence: how to help

published 9/17/2018
As Florence continues to drench the Carolinas, dumping record amounts of rain on the region that has and will continue to lead to devastating flooding, South Georgia United Methodists ask, “How can we help?” The tropical depression, which was downgraded from a Category 1 hurricane after it made landfall in Wrightsville Beach, N.C. Friday, has swamped communities in North Carolina and South Carolina, damaged thousands of homes and businesses, and left hundreds of thousands without power. At ...

Slow Down

published 9/17/2018
OUR CONNECTION MATTERS NITA CRUMP 35Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed. 36Simon and his companions went to look for him, 37and when they found him, they exclaimed: “Everyone is looking for you!” Mark 1:35-37 Years ago, as a nursing home administrator, I served one that was part of a national chain. The home office was in Texas. Keep in mind that this was in the late 80s. The best option for being ...

Hurricane Florence Update: Online Giving, Cleaning Kits, A Word from the Bishop

published 9/14/2018
Hurricane Florence has made landfall along the east coast and is predicted to move slowly through the Carolinas and Southeast throughout this weekend causing inland rainfall flooding, life-threatening storm surge and possible mudslides. Parts of South Georgia can expect some rain and windy conditions. You should stay tuned to your local weather source for updated information for your area. The Disaster Response Team will continue to monitor this storm and the updates very closely as the storm ...

3 practices to prepare for YOUR District Conversation

published 9/4/2018
GROWING IN GRACE BEN GOSDEN Bishop Bryan is busy traveling the Conference speaking with members of each district of South Georgia about General Conference 2019 and the work of the Commission on a Way Forward. As we prepare for the conversations in our respective districts, I want to share three important practices I think we all should engage in as we enter into potentially difficult conversations. (I realize that three districts will have already had their event by the time you read this ...

As we journey toward General Conference, Stay Calm, Stay Connected, Stay the Course

published 9/4/2018
FROM THE BISHOP R. LAWSON BRYAN Attendance at the Way Forward district meetings has been outstanding. With nearly 500 people present in Columbus, nearly 400 in Statesboro, and around 350 in Valdosta, the interest of our church members and pastors is certainly evident. Those present at each gathering have inspired me with their sincere devotion, their deep love for the Church, and their passionate desire to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.  The three remaining...

Conference to offer Certified Lay Minister Training

published 9/4/2018
Laity have long been an integral part of Methodist ministry. Lay leaders, lay speakers, and lay missioners have served the church almost since its inception. Certified Lay Ministers (CLMs) typically provide ministry in part-time or volunteer roles in a variety of formats including conducting public worship, caring for the congregation, assisting in program leadership, developing new and existing faith communities, preaching the Word, leading small groups, and establishing community outreach ...

Delegation to host listening sessions

published 9/4/2018
South Georgia’s General Conference delegation will host three listening post sessions to provide South Georgia clergy and laity the opportunity to share their thoughts and take part in the Way Forward conversation. Three listening sessions will be held, and several delegation members will be present at each meeting. Thursday, October 11             The Chapel, Brunswick          10 a.m. – noon Wednesday, October 17         Centenary UMC, Macon        10 a.m. – noon Thursday, October 25        ...

John Wesley’s marriage

published 9/4/2018
JOHN WESLEY MOMENTS DAVE HANSON John Wesley had discussed with a friend whether or not it would be a good thing for him to marry, and on February 2, 1751, he decided to do so. He was 47 years old and his bride, Molly Vazelle, was a wealthy widow with four children. She was 41 years old. Her merchant husband had died four years previously. It is interesting that this marriage occurred just days after John had urged Methodist ministers not to marry unless there were exceptional reasons to do so....

KidzQuest - "This Wild Life" - set for Sept. 21-23

published 9/4/2018
KidzQuest, an annual children’s retreat sponsored by South Georgia’s Connectional Ministries, will be held September 21-23 at Epworth By The Sea on St. Simons Island. The theme, “This Wild Life,” will be the foundation of the weekend and will help show kids just how wild their faith journey can be! As Joshua 1:9 commands us to be strong, brave, and not afraid, kids will learn that “I [God] will be there to help you wherever you go.” What a promise!  Designed for students in third through sixth ...

Letter calls for hope, kindness, unity

published 9/4/2018
By Kara Witherow, Editor In a season when The United Methodist Church is fraught with discord, distrust, and dissension, more than 250 South Georgia clergy and laity have signed an online petition to demonstrate their commitment to unity. The “Hope Through Unity” open letter was published last month and has gained attention around the Conference and the connection. The writers hope to build a coalition of people on both sides of the human sexuality debate who support unity. “Our hope is ...

Three appointments announced, effective Oct. 1

published 9/2/2018
Bishop Lawson Bryan has announced appointments for three local church positions effective October 1. Dr. Tony Caldwell, currently serving as pastor of Montezuma United Methodist Church, will be appointed to Hinesville First United Methodist Church. Rev. Jonathan Beckum, currently serving at Ellaville United Methodist Church and Corinth United Methodist Church, has been appointed to Montezuma UMC. Haynes Martin, a certified candidate currently serving as assistant pastor at Martha Bowman United ...

Fraud Alert: Spoofing emails being sent from fake address

published 8/31/2018
The conference office has been notified of a spoofing email making the rounds to various South Georgia United Methodists appearing as a message from Bishop Bryan. We recommend that you don't open attachments or give your personal information to anyone unless you are sure about the email address.  We ask that you submit/flag the email to your provider as a spam. Remember now and in the future that the conference sends emails from official conference emails addresses only. Anytime you receive ...

God makes the seed grow

published 8/21/2018
OUR CONNECTION MATTERS NITA CRUMP “It’s not important who does the planting, or who does the watering. What’s important is that God makes the seed grow. The one who plants and the one who waters work together with the same purpose. And both will be rewarded for their own hard work. For we are both God’s workers….” 1 Corinthians 3:7-9a (NLT) In my early years in ministry I served as the associate pastor. Let me say thank you to the person who was handed the responsibility of serving as my ...

When did garbage become entertainment?

published 8/21/2018
PATHWAY TO HIS PRESENCE B.J. FUNK When I was growing up, my daddy emptied our garbage cans every other day. If he didn’t, the cans would fill to overflowing. If the garbage was in the kitchen, he took it out more often so that leftover food would not begin to smell. If you had asked me what I knew about garbage, I would have considered that a weird question. I wasn’t supposed to know anything about garbage. It belonged out of our house, and daddy saw to that. Around 40 years ago, the late ...

Financial Literacy Academy gives clergy tools, teaching needed for financial literacy

published 8/20/2018
By Kara Witherow, Editor Fresh out of seminary or License to Preach school most pastors enter into vocational ministry feeling pretty well prepared to preach, teach Bible studies, lead theological discussions, and make disciples. But too often they receive their first or second appointment and are thrust into a situation for which they feel completely unprepared – a finance committee meeting. There are no financial classes taught at seminary, and precious few hours are spent on preparing ...

Page 1 of 19 1 2 3 4 5 ... 19 next