This week's news.......

January 5, 2017

Prayer Concerns

**Please keep Rachel Goode in your prayers.  She is having heart surgery at UAB on Tuesday, January 10th.  Rachel is the wife of The Rev. Brad Goode who currently serves as Associate Pastor at Dauphin Way UMC.

**Our thoughts and prayers go to Pastor James Williams upon the death of his mother on December 24.  James has served Wesley Chapel UMC here in the Mobile District. 

Important Dates To Remember

  • January 2 - Bishop Graves S/PPR Committee training video available online at   It would be best for the entire SPRC to watch this training video together at your January meeting.
  • January 9 - The last day apportionment payments may be applied for the 2016 year.
  • January 22 - District Conference at Toulminville Warren Street UMC - 3:30 pm
  • January 22 - Bishop Graves Town Hall Meeting at Toulminville Warren Street UMC - 4:00 pm.
  • January 23 - Bishop Graves Pastors Meeting at Christ UMC - 9:30am.  If a pastor is not able to attend this meeting you may join him that evening at Saraland UMC - 7:00pm.
  • January 31 - Deadline for S/PPR Committee Response Sheets to be turned in to the District Office. 
  • January 31 - Deadline for remittance of the year end Local Church Report.  (EZRA Report)
  • January 31 - Fund Balance Report due to the District Office

Invitation from the Baypines District for EZRA Training

The Baypines District has issued an invitation for our district to join them for EZRA training from Mr. Frank Dunnewind our Alabama-West Florida Conference Treasurer and Statistician.  He will be giving instructions and answering questions about the Local Church Year End Report also known as EZRA.  Please RSVP for this training so they may let each church know how many will be attending.

Pastors, Finance Chairs/Finance Committees, Treasurers, Church Secretaries and Lay Leaders are invited to attend on Monday, January 9, 2017.

We have chosen three locations and times to make this training accessible for everyone.   

  • 10:00 a.m. FUMC Bay Minette 
  • 2:00 p.m. FUMC Monroeville
  • 6:30 p.m. FUMC, Evergreen

Please let us know which location and time is best for you by calling the Baypines District Office at (251) 580-2021 or email

New Semester Begins for Students at USA Wesley Foundation

A a new semester begins the USA Wesley Foundation wants to continue the tradition of providing meals each Tuesday night. We are seeking volunteers to help provide this meal each week.  This is an important time in the lives of these young students and what a great opportunity for you to show hospitality and get to know them as they grow in their relationship with Christ!  They expect to feed approximately 40 folks each week. Wesley will have paper products and drinks so you only need the meal... but be sure to include a dessert – we are talking about college students you know.  :-)  You are welcome to stay and eat with the students or you may simply drop off the food at the Wesley Foundation by 5:30pm. This could be a great project for your Sunday School Class or a small group within your church. 

Please consider supporting the students of The Wesley Foundation in this way and contact Missy Smith at to volunteer today!

Standing Rules Information and Deadline Announced

The Committee on Standing Rules has begun its work in preparation for the 2017 Annual Conference session, June 4-7, 2017, at Frazer Memorial UMC in Montgomery, AL. The committee will be reviewing proposed changes to the Conference Standing Rules. The current rules can be found on pp.16-29 of the 2016 Conference Journal; if you do not have a print copy of the Journal, view more information and details about submissions and deadlines on the conference website by clicking here.

Please be aware of upcoming deadlines specified in our Standing Rules:

  • Any proposed changes in the Standing Rules should be received in writing by the chairperson of the Committee on Standing Rules no later than February 1, 2017.
  • Resolutions shall be submitted to the Committee on Resolutions and Petitions by February 15, 2017, except in cases where it can be demonstrated by the author of a late petition that the situation which gave rise to making the petition was not apparent until after the deadline for petitions.
  • Materials and reports to be included in the Book of Reports shall be in the hands of the Journal editor NO LATER THAN February 27, 2017.

2017 AWFC Prayer and Resource Calendars

The 2017 AWFC Prayer and Resource Calendars are now available! For the second year, The Conference Town and Country Commission has published a resource designed to connect our churches and ministries together through prayer. It also has a listing of many conference resources available to your church. Featured pictures are from various conference ministries. Every church will be provided one free calendar that will be distributed through your district office. Additional copies are available for $5 each at

Deadline extended for Lay Servant Training Registration

Due to the very low response so far for the Lay Servant Training on Saturday, January 28 at Tanner Williams UMC; we are extending the registration deadline to January 13.  We hope to have enough signed up to go forward with this local training.  Please take time today to click the below link and register! 
Courses Offered:

  1. Lay Servant Ministries Basic Course*
  2. Delivering an Effective Sermon
  3. Leading Worship
  4. United Methodist Polity

Click here to find registration, textbook and instructor information.

Registration deadline is extended to January 13, 2017

Click here to find the new IRS 2017 mileage rate changes for your  church staff's WRITTEN Accountable Reimbursement Plans!

Lay Servant Ministry Training

The Pensacola District will be offering Lay Servant Ministry advanced courses January / February 2017. The training will be at Pine Forest UMC in Pensacola five consecutive Thursday evenings beginning January 26. The deadline to register is January 13. Details and the flyer are at the AWFC event page here.

Blue Lake Winter Retreat - February 3-5

3rd and 5th graders....... grab your friends and come enjoy your favorite camp activities,                     great Bible studies, and more - at your favorite camp - in the winter!?  Click here for more details.  

Wespath Clergy Benefits Academy

Wespath Benefits & Investments has announced their upcoming Clergy Benefits Academy for all active clergy members of the United Methodist Church. The event is scheduled for February 6-8, 2017, in Pensacola, Florida. The Alabama-West Florida Conference Board of Pension & Health Benefits will not host the 2017 February Pre-retirement seminar so that the conference clergy members will be able to attend this event. The Conference Board is encouraging all active members to attend. Click here for additional Information

Mark your Calendars!

Bishop’s Confirmation Retreat

March 3-5, 2017 at Blue Lake Camp

Job/Ministry Opportunities

Theodore UMC - Pianist/Organist

Click here to find details.

District Dates

Second Sunday of Each Month - North Mobile District SINGSPIRATION- 6pm

Clergy Coffee - First Wednesday of each month 8am – Cracker Barrel on Schillinger Road

January 9 - Deadline for Missional Giving to Conference

January 22 District Conference at Toulminville Warren Street UMC - 3:30pm

January 22 - Town Hall Meeting with Bishop David Graves - 4:00pm

January 23 - Bishop Graves meeting with Pastors at Christ UMC at 9:30am.  If you are not able to attend this meeting you may join him that evening at Saraland UMC at 7:00pm.

January 30 - Deadline to order Boston Butts from Inner City Mission - call 432-1122

January 31 - Deadline for S/PPR Committee Response Sheets to be turned in to the District Office. 

January 31 - Deadline for remittance of the year end Local Church Report (EZRA Report)

January 31 - Fund Balance Report due to the District Office (from your charge conference reporting)

February 4 - Pick up date for ICM Boston Butts at Open Doors Thrift Store - 10am-12pm

Conference Dates

January 14 - Made For More with Alabama Rural Ministry

January 21 - ERT Training Montgomery FUMC

January 22 - Leadership Inspirational Training Event at Navarre

January 22-24 - Mobile District Town Hall Meeting with Bishop Graves

January 27-29 - Cord of Three Christian Women’s Quilting Retreat

January 27-29 - Meltdown 2017

January 28 - Mobile District Lay Servant Training Event

January 29-31 - Montgomery-Opelika District Town Hall Meeting with Bishop Graves

February 3-5 - Blue Lake Winter Retreat

February 6-8 - Wespath Clergy Benefits Academy

February 10-11 - UMW Annual Day

February 10-11 - Montgomery-Opelika District Lay Servant Training

February 12-14 - Dothan District Town Hall Meeting with Bishop Graves

February 17-18 - Baypines District Annual Lay Speaker Training

February 21 - Bishops Day Apart

February 26 - Disabilities Awareness Sunday

February 26-28 - Pensacola District Town Hall Meeting with Bishop Graves

March 3-5 - Bishop's Confirmation Retreat

April 1, 2017 - Blue Lake 65th Birthday
Click here to find The Alabama West Florida Conference calendar online!


Open Hearts. Open Minds. Open Doors.