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

March 10, 2016

It's time to "Spring Forward"!  

Daylight savings time begins this Sunday - turn your clocks forward Saturday night!

Bishop Names McClellan to AWF Cabinet

(Montgomery, AL) – Bishop Paul L. Leeland announces that Dr. Darren McClellan has been appointed as the District Superintendent to the Mobile District of the Alabama-West Florida Conference, effective July 1, 2016.
Currently serving as the senior pastor of Perdido Bay UMC, McClellan was ordained as an elder in the AWF Conference in 2004. His previous appointments include Society Hill/Williams Chapel, Beulah UMC, associate at Ashland Place UMC (Mobile), and St. Mark UMC (Pensacola).
“We are excited to have Darren as a fruitful and faithful addition to our appointive cabinet and the Mobile District. He has demonstrated outstanding leadership abilities in his previous appointments and we look forward to him joining our cabinet team in ministry,” Leeland said.
Dr. McClellan received his undergraduate degree from the University of Florida, is a Candler School of Theology at Emory University graduate and received his Doctorate of Ministry from Princeton Theological Seminary. He is married to the former Kristi Kish. They have three sons, Joshua, John and Maxwell.
Dr. Doug Pennington, current Mobile District Superintendent, will receive a new appointment in the coming days, as will Perdido Bay UMC. Only clergy and staff/pastor-parish relations committees, where new appointments have been made, will begin receiving notifications from their District Superintendents beginning Monday, March 14, 2016, at 8:00am

Conference News for Youth Directors

If you are in youth ministry, you need a community of others working with teens to steal ideas from, ask policy questions, and find solutions to your current youth ministry conundrum. Once a year, the youth workers in the Alabama West-Florida Conference gather to do just that. We will discuss whatever we all need to discuss, get the details on the cool wookie game that worked last week, and eat lunch.

Sessions will be facilitated by Jeremy Steele (Christ UMC in Mobile), Chase Faulk (Frazer UMC in Montgomery) and Caroline Hare (Destin UMC in Destin).

The Youth Worker's Round Table will be at Huntingdon College in the Stallworth Dining Room from 10am - 2pm on Thursday, April 28.

Lunch will be $10. Please bring cash or checks (made out to AWFUMC) to the event.  Should you have questions about this event, contact Rev. Jeremy Steele at or go head and click here to register! 

Free copies of Dr. Ben Witherington's DVD The Gospel of John

Christ United Methodist Church has several copies of the DVD The Gospel of John by Dr. Ben Witherington that they would love to share with other churches... first come first served.  Contact Marcia Jacobs if you are interested at

Ethnic Young Adults can apply now for a summer in DC!

(UMNS) Ethnic Young Adults begin their 2016 season of making a difference in Washington D.C. in just four months and that means the time to apply is NOW!

Each year General Board of Church and Society interns come to the nation’s capitol to gain valuable advocacy experience, increase their leadership skills, and above all, develop and strengthen the connection between being servant of God and serving community.

The GBCS offers two internship opportunities each year – three 10 to 12 week sessions in fall, Winter/Spring and Summer (which is a full time program)
THE EYA application deadline is March 15. 

Those who may apply are young adult persons of color who are members of the United Methodist Church and are sophomore, junior or senior at time of application.

For more details visit:

Click here to see the current edition of

The AWF Conference NewsCONNECTION!

2016 AC Award Committees Accepting Nominations

Do you know someone in the Alabama-West Florida Conference who has exemplified outstanding leadership? Please prayerfully consider nominating them for the Alice Lee Award, Francis Asbury Award, Harry Denman Evangelism Award, Jane Walker Scholarship, and Local Church Award. More information and nomination packets can be found here. Pictured is Mrs. Helen Edwards before she accepts the 2015 Alice Lee Award. 

Lenten Luncheons offered at West Side UMC

Beginning every Wednesday March 2nd thru March 23rd at 12:00 noon West Side UMC will be hosting Lenten luncheons.  Cost is only $6 for one of the best lunches offered in the city of Mobile. Our guest speakers will be:

  • March 16th - Mr. James Roberson (SARPC),
  • March 23rd - Rev. Michael Abrams (West Side UMC).

Those looking for a great meal and fellowship, visit us at 269 Mohawk Street in the Midtown section of Mobile.

United Methodist Men's Annual Advance

The Alabama-West Florida Conference United Methodist Men's (UMM) Annual Advance will be held April 1 - 2, 2016 at Blue Lake.  "Lead Like Jesus" will feature Bishop James Swanson and Jim Boesch.

James E. Swanson, Sr. is a native of Houston, Texas. Swanson has a Bachelor of Science in Christian Ministries from Southern Bible College in Houston; a Master of Divinity from C. H. Mason Seminary, Interdenominational Theological Center in Atlanta and a Doctorate of Humanities from Rust College in Holly Springs, Mississippi. Swanson was elected a bishop in The United Methodist Church and assigned to the Knoxville Episcopal Area in June 2004. He became resident bishop of the Mississippi Area September 1, 2012. Bishop Swanson is currently serving as the president of the General Commission on United Methodist Men. He is also a member of the Connectional Table of The United Methodist Church, the Path One Advisory Board, the International Association of Methodist Schools, Colleges and Universities, and Board of Trustees chair at Gammon Theological Seminary.

Jim Boesch, deployed staff of the General Commission United Methodist Men, is one of the first persons to be certified as a men’s ministry specialist.  After completing training sessions with Orlando-based Man in the Mirror, Boesch engaged in courses in United Methodist polity and history, safe sanctuary training, and hands-on experience in men’s ministry in a local church, He was certified as a men’s ministry specialist in 2009. In recent years, Jim has also been active in the delivery of the “Understanding Men’s Ministry” discipleship training for clergy and lay leaders in the Florida and West Ohio annual conferences. This Leadership Development Encounter is a developmental workshop designed to introduce the “Lead Like Jesus” servant leader model. You will experience both the barriers to effective leadership as well as the power of the Heart, Head, Hands and Habits of Leading Like Jesus.

Registration deadline is March 21st.    Click here to find brochure and registration form.

Questions?  Contact Frank Moore, Conference UMM President,

Blue Lake will have an open house and a free concert May 14, 2016 from 2 pm until 8 pm.  Performing will be The Lads.  The only cost is the concession stand where guests can buy food for dinner.

Blue Lake asks for a reservation with the church's name and how many will be attending.  Contact Eric Hindmon or 334-222-5407.

Praying for GC2016: What will happen?

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — When the 864 delegates arrive for the 2016 United Methodist General Conference, each one comes blanketed in prayer. The Rev. Tom Albin, director of the church’s Upper Room, invites all United Methodists to blanket the entire proceeding with intentional prayer. Kathy Gilbert reports.
Read story and post a comment    -     60 Days of Prayer website

Free course on General Conference

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — United Methodist Communications offers “Exploring General Conference,” a free online course designed to help participants learn more about the official decision-making body of The United Methodist Church. The course is ongoing through June 30.
Learn more

Inspirit 2016 - A time to: Rekindle, Relax and Renew

Inspirit 2016, a time to rekindle, relax and renew, a ministry event designed for adults age 50 , will be held April 7 - 9, 2016 at Blue Lake Assembly.  The 2016 theme:  "Seniors, we've still got it!  So, let's use it!"  

Keynote speaker will be Rev. Dr. Robbins Sims, District Superintendent for the Montgomery-Opelika District.  Director of Congregational Vitality for the Alabama-West Florida Conference, Rev. Dan Pezet, will be the Bible Teacher.  Rev. Ed Shirley, pastor, Brundidge UMC, will lead the music.

Reservation deadline is March 24.  Click here for more information. 
Sponsored by the Alabama-West Florida Conference Older Adult Task Force

Pull a Plane for Dumas Wesley!

Can you handle the ultimate man versus machine challenge? This extreme and unique event, which pits teams of 20 against a FedEx aircraft weighing more than 180,000 lbs., is a fundraiser that raises both money and awareness for the Dumas Wesley Community Center. Teams compete to pull the plane 12 feet in the fastest amount of time. The event is open to the public on May 7th at Brookley Aeorplex.  It will also include entertainment, food, an awards ceremony and a Kid’s Zone with various activities. Spectators are strongly encouraged to attend and cheer on their favorite team!

For more information please visit:

The 2015 Journal is for sale at Amazon!

Click here to order!

Job/Ministry Opportunities - click here for full descriptions

To submit a Job/Ministry opportunity to place on our the AWFUMC website click here.

District Dates

Second Sunday of Each Month - North Mobile District SINGSPIRATION - March at Ebenezer UMC

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

May 7 - Dumas Wesley Pull a Plane event

Local Church Dates

March 2 thru March 23 - Thursday Lenten Luncheons - Noon @ West Side UMC

Conference Dates

March 11-12 - Lay Servant Training Academy - Blue Lake

March 18-20 - UMW Spiritual Enrichment Retreat

April 1-3 - Lead Up! Youth Mission Leadership Practicum

April 1-2 - United Methodist Men's Annual Advance

April 7-9 - Inspirit 2016 

April 20-23 - Blue Lake Christian Writers Retreat

April 22-24 - ARM's Cycle of Service

October 16-21 - 5-day Academy for Spiritual Formation


 Click here to find The Alabama West Florida Conference calendar online! 


Kim Doss
Administrative Assistant
UMC Mobile District Office
6333 Piccadilly Sq Dr
Mobile, AL  36609
Office (251) 345-3313
Fax (251) 345-3315


Open Hearts. Open Minds. Open Doors.