St. Mark UMC located at 430 Azalea Road is collecting UMCOR supplies.
Deadline for drop offs is September 18th. Someone will be in the fellowship hall to receive this Saturday from 9:30am to 10:30am. Or during the week you may drop off Monday through Thursday from 9am until 2pm.
Call church at 251-342-5861 for other information.
Disaster Response Update from Bishop Graves
To our friends, neighbors, and churches in the Alabama-West Florida Conference:
Based on the most recent forecasts from the National Weather Service, it is still uncertain what effect Hurricane Irma will have on our Conference.
Amelia Fletcher, our AWF Disaster Response Team Coordinator, reminds us that now is a good time to review your preparations, especially when we are not imminently in danger or under pressure to move extremely quickly:
- Back up your church and home systems (computers, databases, etc.) onto devices that can be taken with you should you need to evacuate, or to a location that will not be affected by the storms.
- Protect your electronic devices, sensitive equipment, musical instruments, organs, pianos, etc. Covering them with a tarp or plastic sheeting will protect them from roof leaks that might occur. Any equipment that can be elevated at least four inches off the floor will help prevent damage if waters do get into the building. Many computer towers sit on the floor under desks….put them up on the desk if you can.
- Take pictures of your facility, electronics, equipment, etc., for insurance purposes. Make sure these pictures are backed up/stored in a safe place.
- Protect your records and historical documents (technical drawings, pictures, paper files). Placing them in sealable, waterproof plastic bags within a safe or file cabinet will help if you cannot relocate them to a safe place.
- Verify that there is a contact list for all facility personnel, neighbors, family, etc. Make sure someone checks on shut-ins – are there plans for family members to care for them or evacuate them if necessary?
- Be aware of where shelters are in your community.
There are many resources for church preparedness and disaster protocols found on our Conference website: http://www.awfumc.org/resourcesandforms. Upcoming ERT training sessions are listed at http://www.awfumc.org/ERTTraining.
Additionally, this is a good time to check on your neighbors and let them know that they do not need to weather the storms of life alone. There will be great opportunity to serve people who are directly impacted by this storm, including evacuees. We will post updates on our conference social media pages as the storm progresses and inform you of how you can help. Please join me in prayer for everyone in the path of the storm.
Our conference is blessed with able leadership, resources, and a spirit of courage and love – together we will handle whatever forces nature sends our way.
Bishop David W. Graves
Early Response Training Offered
Be prepared for the next disaster. Early response team (ERT) training covers the essentials of early disaster response, including roof tarping, cleaning out damaged homes, spiritual and emotional care, team protocols, and much more. You will receive a badge to join future emergency response teams. Click on the below links to find details of the current training dates offered:
If your church would like to host an Early Response Team training, contact Susan Hunt at 334-356-8014 or Amelia Fletcher at 251-968-2411.
The following conference trainers are both early response trainers and UMCOR badged.
Amelia Fletcher, Baypines District*
Glenn Glover , Montgomery-Opelika District
Michael Lawler*, Dothan District
Pat Shubird , Baypines District
Ron Baughman**, Pensacola District
John Swanson, Montgomery-Prattville District
*also trained for Connecting Neighbors
**also trained for Community Training
also trained for Chainsaw Training
Click here to see the current Word from Bishop Graves
Click here to find the current AWFUMC NewsCONNECTION!
McIntosh UMC will host Singspiration September 10th at 6pm
Charge Conference Forms Available Online
2017 Charge Conference Forms are now available online. You may access them through this link or go to our home page and click on the link under Quick Links. Should you have questions, please contact your district office or Lauren in the Episcopal office. Click here to access forms.
Sims Chapel UMC Homecoming Service September 25th at 11am
AWF Historical Society Meeting -September 21st
Everyone is welcome to attend the next meeting of the Alabama-West Florida Conference Historical Society. We will be meeting at the First United Methodist Church in Pensacola, Florida. This church dates back to 1821 when a mission was established by the Mississippi Conference and the Reverend Alexander Talley was appointed as a missionary to Pensacola. More here.
Dill Lecture Series Announced
Dr. Wayne Flynt will be speaking on Alabama's Religious and Literary Legacy at the next Dill Lecture Series event on September 24th and 25th. Dr. Flint is a renowned scholar and author of fourteen books focusing on Southern culture and religion, Alabama history and politics, education reform and poverty. He is a Professor Emeritus in the History Department of Auburn University. According to Harper Lee he is the "living authority on all things Alabama,"
Click here to find more information!
Praying our Way Forward
The denomination-wide "Praying Our Way Forward" initiative launched on New Year’s Day 2017 with 75 weeks of focused prayer for The United Methodist Church. Each annual conference will take one week to have intentional prayer for the mission of The United Methodist Church to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world and for the work of the Commission on a Way Forward. The effort began in the North Carolina Conference and will conclude in the West Angola Episcopal area in June 2018. The Alabama-West Florida Conference's week of prayer will be September 11-15, 2017.
Click here to hear a special request from Bishop Graves about how local churches can participate in this meaningful week. Click here for a written transcript of the video.
Click here to see the latest McKemie Place Newsletter!
Healing Ministries Workshop
The Board of Discipleship has developed a series of workshops that will equip churches with tools necessary to live out the SEND model of discipleship. Our first effort is a workshop for Lay and Clergy. There IS a Balm in Gilead: Healing Ministries Through Your Local Church will feature Jeff Kirby from Church of the Resurrection. This workshop begins with theory/theology and will build towards practice. We will weave in real stories along the way. We plan to conclude with a Service of Healing. Click here to find more information.