Communications and News

Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey: A reflection on General Conference 2016

Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey: A reflection on General Conference 2016
May 22, 2016

It is late (very late) on May 21 and I await my “red eye” departure from Portland on UNITED. Ironic? Maybe? I choose to call it a reminder of the resounding cry of the faithful followers of Jesus Christ we call UNITED Methodist who gathered for the past 11 days in Portland. I am leaving Portland and General Conference 2016 with my mind and my heart racing as I reflect on the events of ...

United Methodists celebrate success of Imagine No Malaria, launch of Abundant Health Campaign

United Methodists celebrate success of Imagine No Malaria, launch of Abundant Health Campaign
May 18, 2016

United Methodist members and leaders, global health innovators and an “American Idol” star took the stage today to celebrate the success of Imagine No Malaria, an initiative of the people of The United Methodist Church aimed at ending malaria deaths. The multimedia event, which was held at the denomination’s quadrennial legislative gathering being held through May 20 at the Oregon ...

Bishop Harvey speaks at General Conference 2016: “Wear the Robe Like it Matters”

Bishop Harvey speaks at General Conference 2016: “Wear the Robe Like it Matters”
May 16, 2016

Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey reminded those attending General Conference 2016 that all are called to “bear fruit for God’s sake.” Preaching from Matthew 22:1-14 and the parable of the king’s wedding banquet, the Louisiana Episcopal Area leader told delegates God invites people to come as they are, but not to stay as they are. “Our showing up at the party, our standing before God, is ...

Hudson provides chalk recording during GC2016

Hudson provides chalk recording during GC2016
May 16, 2016

Lauren Hudson, currently serving as an intern for the LSU Wesley Foundation in Baton Rouge, is still basking in the excitement of having provided her chalk recording at General Conference 2016 during Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey’s sermon the morning of May 16 in Portland, Oregon.   “I was very honored to be able to go, and to actually get to share that (chalk recording) with the United ...

Louisiana Avenue UMC selected for #WeAreMore feature video

Louisiana Avenue UMC selected for #WeAreMore feature video
May 16, 2016

The Louisiana Conference is proud of Louisiana Avenue UMC, Lafayette and its pastor, Rev. Robert Johnson for being selected for this #‎WeAreMore video story. The story is featured on the #WeAreMore website and has been shared throughout the denomination via social media. “I am inspired by the love, commitment and dedication of the people of Louisiana Avenue UMC. They are willing to ...

McCormicks commissioned as missionaries during GC2016

McCormicks commissioned as missionaries during GC2016
May 16, 2016

On May 19, along with 27 others, David and Elizabeth McCormick from Louisiana were commissioned as missionaries by the United Methodist Church during the denomination’s 2016 General Conference, its legislature that meets every four years.    Family, friends and the Louisiana Annual Conference will also watch as David and Elizabeth are recognized as new missionaries of The United ...

Ingleside United Methodist Church engaging global communities with kits for girls

Ingleside United Methodist Church engaging global communities with kits for girls
May 03, 2016

A faithful group of women are helping Ingleside United Methodist Church engage with the global community by sewing and packaging hygiene kits for girls living in Uganda.     These kits are badly needed in underserved countries that have minimal resources. Most of the women who volunteer with this project are retired school teachers and administrators who believe heartily in helping girls...

Louisiana Avenue United Methodist Church creates ‘Impact’ through homeless ministry

Louisiana Avenue United Methodist Church creates ‘Impact’ through homeless ministry
May 03, 2016

Louisiana Avenue United Methodist Church is impacting the city of Lafayette through an active “street” ministry. Appropriately, the outreach program is known as IMPACT, an acronym for “inspiring ministry of poverty action through Christ’s testimony.”   The ministry began as a “brown bag” feeding program for the growing population of homeless in downtown Lafayette, said Rev. Robert ...

Shreveport churches unite through UM-Ignite

Shreveport churches unite through UM-Ignite
May 03, 2016

When churches work together to impact a community, amazing things can happen. Tommy O’Rear, a member of Sibley United Methodist Church and coordinator for UM-Ignite, has witnessed first-hand the benefit of congregations pooling their resources and energy to make a difference in the lives of others.   UM-Ignite is a coalition of congregations in the Shreveport District focusing on ...

St. John’s UMC meets community needs for food and communication

St. John’s UMC meets community needs for food and communication
May 03, 2016

Volunteers serving The Shepherd’s Market—a client choice food pantry at St. John’s United Methodist Church in Baton Rouge—began to notice soon after opening their doors in 2012 that a significant number of clients were Spanish-speaking.   Actually, we estimate that 25 percent of the people currently coming in for help are non-English speaking. We currently serve 420 families per month,” ...

Rossnagel is new Director of Communication Strategies, Backstrom to serve as Communication Liaison

Rossnagel is new Director of Communication Strategies, Backstrom to serve as Communication Liaison
April 27, 2016

Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey is pleased to announce Todd Rossnagel as the Director of Communication Strategies for the Louisiana Annual Conference.   Rossnagel’s assignment is effective July 1, 2016. Under the new structure, current Director of Communications, Betty Backstrom, will assume the role of Communication Liaison in a part-time status. Jamie Warren, Communications/Web Assistant ...

South Central Jurisdiction bishops launch #WeAreMore social media campaign

South Central Jurisdiction bishops launch #WeAreMore social media campaign
April 26, 2016

BATON ROUGE, La. – The bishops of the South Central Jurisdiction have joined together to produce a campaign focused on stories that connect people and proclaim that #WeAreMore when united through Jesus Christ.The campaign, called “We Are More,” is designed to engage the people in the pews through sharing and listening to one another’s stories. “People seem to be anxiously bracing ...

Access recorded presentations from Conference Communications Livestream!

Access recorded presentations from Conference Communications Livestream!
April 18, 2016

The first ever Louisiana United Methodist Conference Communications Livestream, held April 16 in Shreveport, was a huge success! Thanks to Grace Community United Methodist Church and to Rev. Juan Huertas, pastor, and to the AMAZING tech staff at the church for making this exciting event possible. (You know who you are, Brad Pollit and John McLaurin!) If you missed the event, no ...

Five-Day Spiritual Academy enjoyed by 39 pilgrims

Five-Day Spiritual Academy enjoyed by 39 pilgrims
April 13, 2016

Thirty-nine pilgrims across six state lines, both clergy and laity, attended the 2016 Five-Day Spiritual Academy on April 3-8 at the Wesley Center.   Presenter Dr. Roberta Bondi led the way into Entering the Silence while Dr. Michael Battle led the group into Engaging the World, looking at spirituality and community in terms of reconciliation.   Dianne Wilkinson, registrar, said this was...

ERTs respond in wake of flooding

ERTs respond in wake of flooding
April 12, 2016

Early Response Team members from Clinton United Methodist Church and Grace UMC in Ruston recently moved a "mountain of debris" left behind in the wake of record rains and flooding in Louisiana. The team was volunteering in rural Ouachita Parish. The work, accomplished with the aid of a tractor, was part of an ongoing recovery effort in which ERTs are playing a big role.   Team members ...

Native American ministries committee meets at Clanton Chapel UMC, Dulac

Native American ministries committee meets at Clanton Chapel UMC, Dulac
April 12, 2016

Members of the Louisiana Annual Conference Native American Ministries Committee gathered at Clanton Chapel UMC in Dulac on April 2. The committee supports the Native American ministries of the Louisiana Annual Conference, including Clanton Chapel and Clanton preschool, the Dulac Community Center, and scholarships for Native Americans entering seminary.   LACONAM also works to develop ...

First UMC, Zachary forms ‘Friends and Needles’

First UMC, Zachary forms ‘Friends and Needles’
April 11, 2016

First United Methodist Church in Zachary recently formed “Friends and Needles,” a ministry group that uses sewing and other needle crafts to work on mission projects. The “Friends and Needles” group brings together women who enjoy sewing and other needle crafts for mission outreach, all the while teaching each other various craft skills.    In January of this year, more than 20 women ...

General Conference 2016: Therefore Go

General Conference 2016: Therefore Go
April 05, 2016

United Methodists throughout the world are preparing for the 2016 General Conference, the denomination’s legislative assembly slated for May 10-20 in Portland. Stay informed about proposed legislation and major legislative issues that will be the focus of GC2016 by visiting these helpful links: UMNS News Reports on GC2016 Proposed Legislation Major Legislative Issues General Conference...

Louisiana Conference sends missionaries to Mozambique

Louisiana Conference sends missionaries to Mozambique
April 05, 2016

The Louisiana Annual Conference is sending Dave and Elizabeth McCormick to Mozambique as GBGM missionaries. Joined by their children, Eva and Annie, the couple will be giving themselves to three years of service. They will be commissioned at General Conference 2016 in Portland, Oregon in May and will serve as full GBGM missionaries.    In addition, Chasity Jones has been accepted as a ...

More than 200 attend Confirmation Day with the Bishop

More than 200 attend Confirmation Day with the Bishop
April 05, 2016

More than 200 confirmands from throughout the Louisiana Annual Conference joined Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey, clergy, youth and children’s workers and volunteers for Confirmation Day with the Bishop on April 2 at The Wesley Center in Woodworth. The theme, "Rooted in Christ," challenged confirmands to listen to their individual call to serve, to nurture their faith and to strengthen ...

Springhill UMC visits Heifer Village in Little Rock

Springhill UMC visits Heifer Village in Little Rock
April 05, 2016

A group of 28 Sunday School students and adult volunteers from Springhill United Methodist Church traveled to Little Rock recently to visit the Heifer Village and to learn more about the Heifer Project’s work around the world. The children have been collecting money for Heifer animals throughout the year.   They also enjoyed a picnic in the park and toured the Museum of Discovery. The ...

Conference communications workshop to be live-streamed April 16 from Grace Community UMC

Conference communications workshop to be live-streamed April 16 from Grace Community UMC
April 04, 2016

Attention local churches and church leaders! Would you like to know more about planning and developing your church website? How about using technology in your worship services? Could you benefit from hearing a discussion on “best practices” for Social Media, Texting and Emails? Would you like to know more about understanding and promoting your church’s mission?    Then Mark Your Calendar...

Horseshoe Drive UMC holds community Easter service in downtown Alexandria coffee shop

Horseshoe Drive UMC holds community Easter service in downtown Alexandria coffee shop
March 29, 2016

For the second year, Horseshoe Drive United Methodist Church held a community Easter Sunday service at Tamp and Grind in downtown Alexandria. Due to the threat of thunderstorms, the service was  held inside the coffee shop. More than 60 people were in attendance. Easter worship is one of four community services held “outside of the walls” of Horseshoe Drive UMC, each year. “Now, more ...

United Methodist churches in Livingston Parish churches hold joint Easter celebration

United Methodist churches in Livingston Parish churches hold joint Easter celebration
March 23, 2016

SATSUMA, LA--Livingston Parish United Methodist churches will join forces to offer one Easter Service for all of their neighbors in the parish. Faith Crossing United Methodist Church in North Walker, Livingston UMC, Corbin UMC in Walker and James Chapel UMC in Holden will meet as one congregation Sunday morning, March 27 at 10 a.m. in the Suma Crossing Community Center Theatre.   Rev. ...

Louisiana United Methodist pastors evacuate during recent flooding

Louisiana United Methodist pastors evacuate during recent flooding
March 17, 2016

When Rev. Ted Freeland was traveling south on Louisiana Hwy. 165 in North Monroe through flooding rains last week, he began to get that sinking feeling that he could be in trouble. The pastor of Faith and Wilhite United Methodist Churches in West Monroe recalled that he could see that water was covering the road. “ I hit the water, stopped and looked carefully. At that point I couldn’t ...

Bishop Harvey gives thanks for Louisiana's 'amazing' United Methodists

Bishop Harvey gives thanks for Louisiana's 'amazing' United Methodists
March 15, 2016

When I arrived in Louisiana in September of 2012, I learned a phrase, "When we don't know what to do, we know what to do."  While I was puzzled at first, it did not take me long to figure out what these good Louisianans meant.  I arrived on the heels of Hurricane Isaac and while I was astounded at the extensive  damage water can create, I was even more astounded at the way people in ...

Louisiana churches lend aid to neighbors in wake of record floods

Louisiana churches lend aid to neighbors in wake of record floods
March 14, 2016

In the wake of flooding that has affected more than 43 of the 64 parishes in the state of Louisiana and a majority of conference districts, Louisiana’s United Methodist churches are serving as the hands and feet of Christ in meeting the needs of those affected by the devastating rains.   In hard hit Ouachita Parish located in the Monroe District, volunteers from Foundry UMC in ...

Floods

Floods
March 12, 2016

The images and the stories of this week's floods across the state are heartbreaking.   The Louisiana Conference Disaster Response team is doing its best to respond to the needs and requests. They are working closely with UMCOR to distribute needed supplies, assess damage and determine the next steps in what will be a long term recovery effort.  We have received an initial $10,000 ...

Louisiana churches provide shelter, distribute buckets and health kits

Louisiana churches provide shelter, distribute buckets and health kits
March 12, 2016

In an unprecedented flooding event that has prompted 43 parishes to declare a state of emergency and that has affected much of North and Central Louisiana, as well as a number of the state’s southeastern parishes, Louisiana’s United Methodist churches are “stepping up” to meet the needs of those affected by the devastating rains.   St. Andrew’s United Methodist Church in Sterlington is ...

Conference events cancelled, UMCOR assisting with cleaning buckets and grant funding
March 10, 2016

A Message from Bishop Cynthia Harvey: Our prayers continue for all those impacted by the rising waters across the state of Louisiana. Our Early Response Teams have been mobilized, flood buckets are on the way from the UMCOR Depot, and an emergency grant has been granted from UMCOR for immediate response and deployment. Assessment of the impacted areas is in process and as soon as we ...

First UMC, Minden provides shelter during Louisiana storms

First UMC, Minden provides shelter during Louisiana storms
March 10, 2016

As travelers made their way Wednesday along North Louisiana roads and highways, many found themselves trapped as one road after another became flooded and impassable. By 9 p.m., First United Methodist Church in Minden had opened their doors to a dozen adults and children needing shelter from the storms that had dumped anywhere from 9-11 inches of rain on the area surrounding the North ...

Conference Health Care Task Force to hold informational meetings in March and April
March 09, 2016

One of the major expenses and issues that most people are facing today is health care coverage, and for United Methodist clergy and the churches that provide their benefits, the concerns are no different.  As was announced earlier, Bishop Cynthia Harvey, in keeping with the conference Board of Pensions and Health Benefits A Plan Forward, appointed a task force to examine the health plans...

Raymond UMC hosts new Kids' Club

Raymond UMC hosts new Kids' Club
March 08, 2016

With the assistance of a Conference Fresh Expressions grant, Raymond United Methodist Church in Jennings is hosting a new Kids' Club that serves elementary aged children. The ministry provides community children with fun activities, Bible lessons, service opportunities, fellowship and a meal.   The group has grown to nearly 20, mostly fourth and fifth graders. Pictured here are the ...

Senior High Retreat draws 318 participants

Senior High Retreat draws 318 participants
March 08, 2016

The Wesley Center is Woodworth was “hoppin’” this past weekend with 318 youth and adult participants enjoying the 2016 Conference Senior High Retreat. This awesome event, leading others into abundant life in Christ, was the “best ever” according to many of the youth participants. Alana Rembert, CCYM senior from the Lake Charles District, wrote on Facebook, “My last Sr. High Retreat and ...

Louisiana Conference announces new Cabinet positions

Louisiana Conference announces new Cabinet positions
February 26, 2016

At the 2015 Louisiana Annual Conference, the delegates voted to accept a new conference structure that would align the work of the Conference with its vision, mission and core values.  After two years of diligent work, the assigned task force aligned the work into four areas: Clergy Excellence, Congregational Vitality, Administrative Ministries and the work of the Bishop and Cabinet. See...

First UMC, Crowley holds ribbon cutting for renovation project

First UMC, Crowley holds ribbon cutting for renovation project
February 25, 2016

First United Methodist Church in Crowley recently held a re-consecration celebration and ribbon cutting ceremony for the church’s newly renovated Fellowship Hall. The project, completed in January, began in June of 2015. Pictured here are members of the Building Committee with Rev. Lewis Morris, senior pastor, and Rev. John Cannon, Acadiana District Superintendent, who is shown cutting ...

Wesley UMC celebrates 150 years of ministry

Wesley UMC celebrates 150 years of ministry
February 25, 2016

This year, Wesley United Methodist Church in Baton Rouge will celebrate 150 years of ministry as a congregation.   According to church history, Wesley’s first church building was constructed in 1866 when newly emancipated slaves “removed themselves from the balcony of First Methodist Church,” then located at Laurel and Fourth Streets.  Church forefathers built the first Wesley church ...

Free online course helps engage more people with General Conference

Free online course helps engage more people with General Conference
February 23, 2016

Nashville, Tennessee:  Exploring General Conference, a free online course from United Methodist Communications, is designed to help participants learn more about the official decision-making body of The United Methodist Church and to explore many of the aspects of General Conference in anticipation of the 2016 session. The course is comprised of five modules, which are designed to take ...

AC2016 is June 8-11, Slaughter is keynote speaker

AC2016 is June 8-11, Slaughter is keynote speaker
February 18, 2016

AC2016: Rooted and Grounded will be held June 8-11 at Centenary College in Shreveport. This year's scripture verse is Ephesians 3:14-21, and the event will be held primarily in the Gold Dome on Centenary's campus. Rev. Ann Sutton, pastor of Northwood United Methodist Church in Lafayette and noted artist, has created a beautiful logo in watercolor for this year's event. Watch this ...

Munholland UMC, Metairie serves community with ‘drive-thru’ ashes

Munholland UMC, Metairie serves community with ‘drive-thru’ ashes
February 11, 2016

United Methodist churches from throughout the Louisiana Conference held traditional Ash Wednesday services in their sanctuaries, as well as offering unique “outside the sanctuary” opportunities for folks to receive the imposition of ashes.   One such church was Munholland United Methodist Church in Metairie, who for the second year, offered a “drive-thru” option for people “on the go.” ...

United Methodist Women of Gretna UMC raise funds, awareness of human trafficking

United Methodist Women of Gretna UMC raise funds, awareness of human trafficking
February 08, 2016

In solidarity with United Methodist Women throughout the denomination, the UMW of Gretna United Methodist Church recently “opened their umbrellas” and helped to raise $250 for donation toward the prevention of human trafficking. Concerned about the increase in human trafficking during big events such as the Super Bowl, United Methodist Women everywhere opened umbrellas as a sign of ...

United Methodist centenarian honored on WAFB-TV’s ‘Pass It On’ segment

United Methodist centenarian honored on WAFB-TV’s ‘Pass It On’ segment
February 04, 2016

Mildred Bowie, a member of St. Mark United Methodist Church in Baton Rouge, was recently featured on WAFB-TV’s “Pass It On” segment in recognition of her involvement in the community and in the ministries of her church.   Perhaps a more impressive fact about Mildred is that she just celebrated her 100th birthday!   The camera crew from WAFB caught up with Mrs. Bowie-who was bowling at ...

Asbury UMC, Lafayette presents $43,282 to Wesley’s Table, a ministry of La. Memorial UMC, Opelousas

Asbury UMC, Lafayette presents $43,282 to Wesley’s Table, a ministry of La. Memorial UMC, Opelousas
February 02, 2016

Louisiana Memorial United Methodist Church of Opelousas made the decision in 2015 to start the Wesley’s Table ministry, a feeding program focusing on neighbors within walking distance of the church.   Five teams committed to purchase, cook, serve and clean up after a free Sunday breakfast offered weekly. By the end of the year, those enjoying breakfast and fellowship every Sunday during ...

Safe Sanctuaries trainings slated for February, March

Safe Sanctuaries trainings slated for February, March
February 02, 2016

Several years ago, the Louisiana Conference approved a resolution that required each local church to write and adhere to a Safe Sanctuaries policy for their congregation.  This is done to insure that our ministries provide a safe place for all, especially our children and youth.  Each year our congregations are to report that they have and follow a safe sanctuaries policy.   The ...

St. Charles UMC, Destrehan sends medical equipment to clinic in West Africa

St. Charles UMC, Destrehan sends medical equipment to clinic in West Africa
January 27, 2016

St. Charles United Methodist Church in Destrehan recently found a unique way to serve Hope Services, one of several ministries in Africa assisted by the New Orleans area congregation. Hope Services is a faith-based clinic and hospital for women and children in Cameroon, West Africa.    Several months ago, East Jefferson General Hospital in Metairie contacted one of the members of St. ...

Louisiana Prison Chapel Foundation offering is slated for Feb. 7

Louisiana Prison Chapel Foundation offering is slated for Feb. 7
January 26, 2016

On Feb. 7, United Methodist churches will take a special offering for the Louisiana Prison Chapel Foundation (LPCP), which has been building chapels in Louisiana prisons for more than 15 years. These chapels have become a place of birth and nurturing of the spiritual journey of thousands of inmates. Fourteen chapels and a Religious Education building are open and bursting with activity ...

New Church Leadership Institute emphasizes importance of ministry “outside the church building”

New Church Leadership Institute emphasizes importance of ministry “outside the church building”
January 25, 2016

During the conference-sponsored New Church Leadership Institute, participants heard, “There is no direct correlation between a pastor sitting in his or her office to adding new people to the church; there is, however, a direct correlation between the pastor being out in the community and adding new people to the church.”   “Clergy, think of yourselves as being appointed to a community—...

Kilbourne UMC mentors at-risk teens in rural town

Kilbourne UMC mentors at-risk teens in rural town
January 21, 2016

The members of Kilbourne United Methodist Church know that in small, rural towns, local churches must be a resource and a haven for those in poverty. Sometimes, they are the only places for people to turn.   In response to the great need in the community, Kilbourne UMC sponsors an after-school group for teens attending Kilbourne High School. This particular group of youth, ranging in age...

Lafayette churches collaborate on ‘Day of Service’

Lafayette churches collaborate on ‘Day of Service’
January 19, 2016

Asbury, Covenant, Louisiana Avenue and Northwood United Methodist Churches joined forces Jan. 16 for a “Day of Service,” participating in several community outreach projects serving the Lafayette community.   The tasks included installing home fire alarms (in conjunction with the Red Cross), sewing pillows for breast cancer patients, assembling boxes for children picked up through the ...

University UMC, Baton Rouge joins in interfaith worship and ‘march for peace’ on MLK Day

University UMC, Baton Rouge joins in interfaith worship and ‘march for peace’ on MLK Day
January 19, 2016

Engaging with their community in a significant way, members and leaders of University United Methodist Church joined the Interfaith Federation of Greater Baton Rouge yesterday for a Martin Luther King Day worship service and “March for Peace” in downtown Baton Rouge. Rev. Colleen Bookter, associate pastor for University UMC, was interviewed by WAFB-TV during the event. View the story ...

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