An Account of the Ministry and Mission
of the South East District
There has been very little in the last year that I have appreciated. The complete disruption of my life has been a persistent visitor and knocks daily at my door. That said, I cannot honestly assess these twelve months without grudging acknowledgement. This period of pandemic has taught me lessons I hope not soon to forget. It has required that I seek the presence of God in my life when too often I have expected it to be delivered as I would my morning paper. These last months have required resourcefulness if I am to satiate my holy desires. All of us pastors and churches have had to adjust, reorder our priorities, and think creatively, for the need of God is greater than ever before.
Because we have done these things in more than one instance, we have invited deeper and richer experiences of God that rote habit never would have offered. I have learned that Wesley Bible presentations delivered to our third grader’s front door, surrounded by family, is so much more meaningful than reading a name as they walk by on a Sunday morning. On Maundy Thursday we will be taping and interviewing our Rabbi in town so that we can know and understand the meal at which Jesus and his disciples gathered. Frankly, I would never have considered doing something like this before, and yet because we will, I think my understanding of that night will run deeper than ever before. Some of you have asked that the interview and re-creation of the Passover meal be offered to our district churches and so it will be on our district website next week. I would also remind you that the conference is an excellent resource as you are looking for new ways to express our Easter faith. Another idea we are trying at Wesley is a “Holy Week kit” with printed relevant scriptures, a candle to light on Easter morning (purposely recycled from Christmas eve luminaries), a cross to remind us of Good Friday, and a communion packet for Maundy Thursday. The packet reminds us that in this time of dislocation, Easter and its hope is unmoved.
These last twelve months could never have been imagined, and it appears there is yet some more days to endure. However, the only thing without end is God’s never ending and never-failing love. God will make a way, and for the church, it is only our responsibility to follow. Thank you for all the witness you have and continue to provide. Let us at the district office know how we can be of support.
Share the Love: Send Your Photos
We would like to feature pictures of your congregation showing love over the past year during virtual worship services at Annual Conference 2021. Please send a photo showing your congregation exhibiting love to the community—whether that is feeding the hungry, showing support to essential workers, holding a drive-by parade, and beyond! Please email a high-resolution photo to firstname.lastname@example.org by April 1.
So Be It: A Lenten Journey in Covenant Prayer
Find virtual worship resources for use by your congregation including music, graphics, and liturgy at ngumc.org/So-Be-It.
GENERAL CONFERENCE: The Commission on the General Conference has announced its decision to further postpone the 2020 General Conference until Aug. 29 – Sept. 6, 2022 in Minneapolis. Click here for more details.
ANNUAL CONFERENCE 2021: As we continue to navigate the pandemic, the 2021 North Georgia Annual Conference will be held online June 3-5, 2021. Click here for more details.
Clergy Move Day 2021
Each summer a number of North Georgia Conference clergy pack their belongings and make the move to their next appointment. To make coordination easier, an official "move day" is set by the Conference.
Beginning in the summer of 2020, the Conference launched is a new pattern for moves.
The last Sunday in June is the final Sunday of a moving pastor's current appointment. The following Tuesday is "Move Day." The first Sunday of July is a Sunday off. The first day at the new appointment will be the first business day after July 4. The clergyperson's first Sunday preaching will be the first Sunday after July 4.
As Wesley Woods/Saint John Towers starts looking at ways to slowly open again, Chaplain Rick Nevard is putting together a recurring event, called, "Reminiscing with Rick," with weekly trivia and sing-a-longs from the 30's, 40's and 50's. Rick is hoping to partner with some of our churches to provide prizes for the events and as things get a little more open, to bring in church groups to host events. If your church would like to participate, please call Chaplain Rick at 706-955-6042.
March 20 & 27 Advanced Lay Pastoral Care Giving Course
Classes will be held from 9:00 am – 4:00 pm (with one hour for lunch) at Young Memorial UMC in Thomson, Georgia (conveniently located one mile off I-20 and close to numerous restaurants). Please register earlyso we will know how many textbooks to order. Contact Terry Hale (South East District Director) about Lay Servant Ministry or classes (706-860-8186 - email@example.com).
From Lindsey Solomon:
Greetings! St. John UMC is going to have a prayer service outside of our sanctuary on Greene Street on March 14. That's close to the date last year when everything changed with the pandemic. We wanted to gather in prayer as we remember the year that's gone by and also to remember all of the lives lost to covid. We will gather at 6 and around 6:15 we will ring bells 50 times to remember the 500,000 lives lost in the US. The whole service will only be about 20 minutes.
I just wanted to let you know that this is something we're doing- and if anyone at your church wants to gather at that time in front of your church for a similar moment of prayer, I think that would be so powerful. Or, folks are welcome to come participate in front of St. John. I've extended this invitation to all the places of worship along Greene Street as well.
Remember the mission of Murphy-Harpst! Everyone should know what the Lord is doing today in the lives of hurting youth across our State through their ministry.
If you are looking for missional resources for your community, or could benefit from an encouraging Sunday School lesson or mission report during this challenging season, reach out to them. They are available for virtual and in person gatherings. And here are some great resources for you to connect.
Do you know someone who would be an excellent choice to serve on a Conference board or committee? Do you feel called to serve in this way? Watch the video above outlining our 2021 Nominations Process from members of the Quality Improvement Team who structured this year's plan. Then, visit the 2021 Nominations webpage to review committee descriptions and openings. Submit nominations between March 5 and March 31 via the form at www.ngumc.org/2021nominations.
MISSION INSITE: On March 16th from 10 am - 12 pm, learn how to use this powerful program to provide your congregation with instant access to community information. Click here for more details or to register.
From the Center for Clergy Excellence
Our next Candidacy Summit is April 17th and the registration is now live:
We also just set the date for a provisional paperwork session and that will be June 15, details and registration coming soon!
Both will be fully online.
Wellroot Invites You to Be Part of the Founders Day 5K
A Virtual 5K To Rally Support of Children and Families
This year Wellroot Family Service’s "Stay Away 5K" has a new name, an exciting 6-week program, and even more reasons to celebrate!
This year, Wellroot is celebrating 150 years of caring for children, youth, and families in Georgia! They will kick-off the anniversary by celebrating Founder’s Week with The Founders Day 5K & children’s Mustard Seed 1K on Saturday, May 1.
The race is a virtual Conference-wide event designed to engage families, churches, companies, and individuals in YOUR community – all running or walking to raise awareness and funds needed for the children and families at Wellroot in their time of deepest need.
You are invited to be a part of this celebration! You can register, and invite others to run with you, or contribute to your fundraiser at www.wellroot5k.org.
Clergy are strongly encouraged to check their ngumc.net email addresses directly through Gmail. However, some clergy prefer to forward their address to another account. Pastors who moved July 1 and forward their ngumc.net email should be sure to update the forwarding account. Access to your ngumc.net email is important for receiving district and conference communication as well as virtual Annual Conference credentials.