Communications and News

New workshops focus on congregational development and transformation
December 11, 2013

Beginning this summer, Congregational Development and Transformation introduced Discipleship Coaching. Since then, another workshop series has been launched, with a third on the horizon.  First United Methodist Church, Alexandria and Munholland UMC, Metairie both recently benefited from Discovering the Possibilities, a five-hour facilitated process designed to assist congregational ...

Historic UMC #GivingTuesday is Record-Breaking Day for Mission
December 05, 2013

Thanks to the generosity of United Methodists around the world, more than 880 projects and missionaries will receive a financial boost to help them meet their mission goals. The denomination’s General Board of Global Ministries announced that the first-ever UMC #GivingTuesday generated a record $6.5 million online on December 3. Nearly 11,000 donors in 34 countries gave more than ...

Blue receives GCAH writing award
November 27, 2013

Rev. Ellen Blue of the Louisiana Conference won the General Commission on Archives & History’s “Women in United Methodist History Writing Award” for 2013. The piece is entitled, “Yes, We Are Everywhere”: Thirty Years with the Women for Progressive Action, Lower Ninth Ward. Rev. Blue, Ph.D., is the Mouzon Biggs, Jr. Professor of the History of Christianity & United Methodist Studies for ...

Dulac Center marks 81st year
November 27, 2013

Dulac Community Center celebrated its 81st anniversary Nov. 15-16 with its Bayou Dulac Culture & Heritage Festival. The event featured handmade crafts, a Native American Village, music, food and an appearance by the Bayou Eagles Native American Dance Group. The center—established in 1932-- provides many services to the Dulac community, helping those in need, advocating for those “whose ...

NOLA Wesley constructs ramp for Luke's House Clinic in New Orleans
November 27, 2013

Over three Saturdays in November, NOLA Wesley Foundation constructed a handicap-accessible ramp and deck for Luke's House Clinic, a non-profit free clinic helping the underserved of New Orleans. Each day, the team of eight students worked alongside Rev. Max Zehner, NOLA Wesley director, to complete the project. NOLA Wesley member Caleb Hicks coordinated the effort, also serving as ...

St. James UMC celebrates 150 years of ministry
November 27, 2013

Bishop Alfred L. Norris, retired UMC bishop and former president of Gammon Theological Seminary in Atlanta, served as guest speaker for the 150th anniversary celebration of St. James United Methodist Church in Shreveport held Nov. 16. Members of the Wiley College “100 voice” choir performed special music for the ecumenical service, while the church’s Senior Choir provided music ...

UM Men of Carrollton UMC assist UMCOR
November 27, 2013

  The United Methodist Men of Carrollton UMC spent several hours in front of the church building Nov. 24 handing out free water to those on their way to the Po Boy Festival in Uptown New Orleans. Donations were also accepted to be sent to UMCOR's current relief efforts in the Philippines. “We even had people quickly stop their cars, jump out to grab some water, and leave a donation! ...

Volunteers needed for prison DISCIPLE Bible Study
November 27, 2013

  During the 2012 Annual Conference, Disciple Bible Outreach Ministries of Louisiana was founded to take Disciple Bible Study into our prisons. A new board was formed, and now the work is underway to recruit volunteers to lead DISCIPLE Bible Study Louisiana’s prisons. Mike Grace, a member of St. Andrews UMC in Baton Rouge, is chairing this effort with support from United Methodist Men, ...

Fishing rodeo for children's home a success
November 25, 2013

  Sue Galliano, event organizer from Grand Isle UMC, and Doug Hall of the Louisiana Methodist Children's Home show off the t-shirt for this year's rodeo. A two-day fishing rodeo, sponsored by Golden Meadow and Grand Isle United Methodist Churches, raised funds to go toward the building of a permanent home for Methodist Children's Home of Greater New Orleans. “Fishing for a New...

Interfaith awards recognize 'bridge building'
November 25, 2013

Is your local church active in a shared ministry with other faiths, congregations or denominations? Are you an active bridge builder who brings together ministries and people of different faiths or denominations? Then you could be the recipient of conference-sponsored Ecumenical and Interfaith Ministry Recognition Award. The Committee on Christian Unity and Interreligious Relationships ...

Prayer, Praise and Testimonies on the Bluff
November 25, 2013

Ecumenical Celebration on the Bluff in Scotlandville The North Baton Rouge Area Churches Ministry held a Prayer, Praise and Testimonies on the Bluff worship service in the Scotlandville Plaza at Scenic Highway and Scotland Avenue on October 12, 2013. From nine in the morning until one p.m. Those gathered were blessed with prayers, singing, dancers and inspiring readings to inspire hope ...

Harvey speaks at Exploration 2013
November 20, 2013

  Diverse group of young adults considers God’s call to ordained ministry By Vicki Brown, GBHEM Speaker after speaker told the 429 young adults gathered to explore ordained ministry in The United Methodist Church that God is calling them to go change the world and the church. “This is not your momma and daddy’s church. We have to be about making disciples, not members,” Bishop Cynthia ...

More than 45 attend L.E.A.D. 2013
November 20, 2013

  Rev. Arnold V. Brown shown teaching L.E.A.D. Bible Study More than 45 laity and clergy attended L.E.A.D. 2013, held at The Wesley Center in Woodworth, La. Nov. 15-16. Workshops were centered on “reaching a new generation” and included such topics as enhancing social media skills; building a youth and young adult ministry; and social justice. Pastor Raymond D. Bailey, founder ...

Bishop Harvey elected secretary for Council of Bishops
November 18, 2013

LAKE JUNALUSKA, N.C. (UMNS) — Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey will be the next secretary of the Council of Bishops. Harvey was elected to the position by the council’s active bishops on Nov. 13 during their recent gathering at Lake Junaluska. Harvey has served as bishop of the Louisiana Conference since September 2012. She will be taking on the role as a parliamentarian and as an organizer ...

Jordan UMC, Baton Rouge honors veterans
November 18, 2013

  Jordan United Methodist Church in Baton Rouge honored its veterans during church services Nov. 10 in honor of Veteran’s Day. Those recognized were, front row, Jeffrey Patterson, Bobbie Kelly (representing Charles R. Kelly) and Samuel Ellis; and back row, Thomas A. Williams, Clifford Henderson, James Owens, Herbert Pate, Herbert Collins and Brena Roy Gasaway (representing Roy Gasaway). ...

UMC#Giving Tuesday
November 18, 2013

  Donations double Dec. 3 through UMC#Giving Tuesday! Make an online donation Dec. 3 to UMC#Giving Tuesday; watch your gift multiply! For one day only, on Dec. 3, 2013 as part of UMC #GivingTuesday, gifts made to support any project or ministry through The Advance will be matched. Global Ministries will allocate the “matching funds” dollar for dollar up to the first $500,000 in gifts to ...

Junior High retreats enjoyed by 230 youth and adults
November 13, 2013

Exploring the topic of grace, Louisiana Conference Junior High retreats were held Oct. 25-27 and Nov. 8-10 at The Wesley Center in Woodworth La. A total of 97 youth and adults attended the October event and 133 youth and adults attended in November. Youth and adult workers participated in youth-led activities that explored the subject of grace, and included reflection on issues ...

Rawle presents at Dr. Who anniversary in England
November 13, 2013

Rev. Matt Rawle, pastor of The Well UMC in Ponchatoula, was among a number of scholars from the United Kingdom, the United States and Scandinavia invited to speak Nov. 2 in the UK at the University of Manchester during the 50th anniversary celebration of “Doctor Who,” a British science-fiction television program. Rawle presented a paper entitled, “God, Time and Identity: Doctor Who and...

Veterans honored, featured in media
November 13, 2013

  A large group of US military veterans (primarly World War II) were honored Nov. 6 at the Broadmoor United Methodist Church "Holy Chow" luncheon in Baton Rouge. The meal--generally attended by "seasoned" citizens-- is hosted once a month by the church and features an interesting program. Also, Charlie George, a WWII veteran and a member of St. Andrews UMC in Baton Rouge, gave rare ...

Lay Delegates needed for 2016 General/Jurisdictional Conferences
November 12, 2013

On behalf of the Louisiana Annual Conference Board of Laity, Conference Lay Leader Carolyn Dove invites interested and qualified lay members of our conference (who are also able to meet the associated time, attendance and financial responsibilities) to consider placing themselves in nomination for election as delegates to the 2016 General Conference and/or Jurisdictional Conference of ...

Report on Episcopal Residence
November 11, 2013

In January of 2012, the Conference Committee on Episcopacy delegated to the Episcopal Residence Committee the task of assessing the current residence located at 7344 Woodstock in Baton Rouge. The Residence Committee is comprised of representatives from CFA, Elaine Burleigh; Trustees, Jim Delaune; the Committee on Episcopacy, Ellen Alston and lay representative Mark Montgomery who is an ...

Bishop calls for offering to aid in typhoon response
November 10, 2013

This week, UMCOR Philippines will deliver approximately 23 tons of food to 7,500 typhoon-affected people in Ormoc City in Leyte Province. This after consultation with the district superintendent and bishop, who helped UMCOR staff identify areas of critical need. UMCOR will be making more food distributions in affected areas in the weeks ahead. Ormoc City is a port city and is the largest...

Advent conference-wide initiative gathers layette kits
November 07, 2013

The road had what appeared to be craters in the middle of it as we maneuvered our way along the beautiful countryside on a typically hot day in Liberia. The road was so bumpy that our bodies actually hurt when we finally arrived at the Camphor Clinic. Set in what appeared to be the middle of nowhere, we were greeted by about 40 tiny, thin, wiry African women. They were singing and ...

Baton Rouge area churches join ecumenical event
November 06, 2013

The North Baton Rouge Area Churches Ministry held Prayer, Praise and Testimonies on the Bluff, a worship service in the Scotlandville Plaza at Scenic Highway and Scotland Avenue on Oct. 12. Prayers, singing, dancers and inspiring readings inspired hope in families “in a quest to help in building wholesome communities.” Participating churches included Camphor Memorial and Hughes United ...

Fitness blitz preps church, community for the holidays
November 06, 2013

Thomas United Methodist Church in Kenner has partnered with several area churches to help individuals avoid holiday weight gain. Rev. Kaseem Short, pastor, and members of local churches along with community residents have committed to being a part of a Pre-Holiday Fitness Blitz. From Oct. 13-Nov. 23, participants have committed to choose an exercise program, select a venue for exercise...

United Methodist pastor receives recognition, funds for work with at-risk youth
November 06, 2013

Rev. Lisa Fitzpatrick, co-founder of the APEX Youth Center in New Orleans and recently named as a 2013 CNN Hero, has been recognized again for her groundbreaking work with decreasing violence among youth in a city that ranks third among the deadliest in the nation.   Selected by 5 Hour Energy as an “Amazing Person,” Fitzpatrick received, on behalf of APEX, a gift of $50,000 to further ...

Advent resources urge simplifying Christmas
November 05, 2013

Nashville, Tenn.: United Methodist Communications has created Advent resources to help United Methodist churches convey a welcoming message during the Christmas season to those who may not have a church home. This year’s resources complement United Methodist Communications’ broader campaign, “That’s Church,” and share a message about cutting through the holiday chaos and simplifying ...

Apply Now for grants from Young Clergy Initiative
November 05, 2013

Applications for Young Clergy Initiative grants to develop innovative projects of all sizes that could attract young people to ordained ministry in The United Methodist Church can be submitted beginning Nov. 1 through www.explorecalling.org/yci/grant. “There are places in our denomination where imaginative ideas are percolating and good, effective work is being done around young people’s...

Aurora UMC packs 50,976 meals
November 05, 2013

Aurora United Methodist Church in Algiers hosted a Stop Hunger Now event Oct. 13, packing 50,976 meals. Nearly 200 volunteers from local churches, service organizations and the military completed the project in about two hours (and a good time was had by one and all!) Church members donated the funds necessary to sponsor the event. Volunteers, through an assembly line, combined rice, ...

First UMC, Coushatta celebrates new sanctuary
November 05, 2013

Serving nearly 190 years in Red River Parish, First United Methodist Church in Coushatta celebrated the grand opening of its new sanctuary and office complex on Nov. 3. The construction project included the demolition of the original church building constructed in the 1920s, Bobbit Fellowship Hall, church offices and the sanctuary built in 1963. The new single building houses a ...

LAVIM team leader training slated March 14, 2014
November 05, 2013

 If Christians would approach worship and church “work” with the same enthusiasm we display for our favorite sports team, we could transform our communities! Serving as God’s hands and feet in this world makes a difference—and for some mission efforts, training can be essential. Make plans to attend the Louisiana Volunteers in Mission Team Leader Training and Strategic Mission Planning ...

Leadership workshop slated Nov. 16
November 05, 2013

Church laity and clergy will learn more about “leading like Jesus” at Leadership Encounter, to be held Saturday, Nov. 16 from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. at NewSong United Methodist Church, 18465 Old Perkins Rd. in Prairieville. An initiative of the General Commission on United Methodist Men, this leadership workshop closely examines Jesus as a leader and a model, equipping participants to lead as He...

Conference staff assists with Baton Rouge District Habitat build
October 31, 2013

  Members of the Louisiana Annual Conference staff (and friends) served as members of a work team for the ongoing Baton Rouge District Habitat build. Pictured in the photo is Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey standing next to homeowner Jane Njenga, center in orange shirt. Jane immigrated from Kenya in 2008. Jane expressed her deep appreciation to the volunteers and donors saying, "I really ...

Fresh Expressions grant deadline is Nov. 8!
October 31, 2013

Fresh Expressions of Church, a micro-grant program sponsored by the Louisiana Conference Board of Discipleship (CBOD), is currently accepting applications for grants of up to $500 to local churches to support community outreach initiatives. Applications must be received by Nov. 8, and successful applicants will be notified in late December and funds will be available in January of 2014. ...

Christian Leadership Center hosts "C. S. Lewis: The Life and Legacy" series
October 30, 2013

SHREVEPORT, LA — Centenary's Christian Leadership Center is celebrating C. S. Lewis, an iconic figure in 20th Century Christianity, with a special series, "C. S. Lewis: The Life and Legacy" November 4-16. The Christian Leadership Center hopes to honor Lewis and commemorate the 50th anniversary of his death by hosting a film, panels, discussions, and a prayer retreat to examine the many ...

Methodist Children's Home, Trinity UMC 'really rock'
October 30, 2013

Caption: Rick Wheat, Children's Home President/CEO on the left and Rev. Jerry Hilbun, Pastor of Trinity UMC on the right. Ruston, LA – Members of Trinity United Methodist Church in Ruston recently donated 50 rocking chairs to the youth at Louisiana Methodist Children’s Home. Trinity’s Outreach Committee sponsored the project and the congregation generously responded by ...

Benton UM Men serve public servants
October 21, 2013

The Benton United Methodist Church UM Men gave 29 copies of a new Christian devotional book to the Benton Fire and Police Departments. The book is entitled, “Strength for Service to God and Community.” The book is written for men and women who “rush into dangerous situations when others are running the opposite direction.” It provides a daily Bible verse, devotional and prayer. The ...

McGuire, First Street PW UMCs receive Peace with Justice awards
October 21, 2013

Shalom Zone Community, Inc., a ministry of First Street Peck Wesley UMC in New Orleans, is a recipient of a 2013 Peace with Justice Grant. Pictured above are children enjoying a summer camp which was partially funded by a PWJ grant. The Conference Board of Church and Society recently announced that McGuire United Methodist Church, West Monroe and First Street Peck Wesley UMC, ...

McNeese Wesley Foundation students find call to youth ministry
October 21, 2013

College is a natural time of vocational discernment for young adults. Add pressing vocational questions to the Wesley Foundation's perpetual emphasis of a culture of "call" within the Body of Christ, and the spiritual growth in a student can be explosive. I think it ultimately comes down to the reality that God helps the faithful meet mutual needs. At McNeese State’s Wesley Foundation in...

Rev. Rudy Rasmus speaks at First Grace UMC
October 21, 2013

First Grace United Methodist Church, 3401 Canal St. in New Orleans, celebrated its sixth anniversary Sunday, Oct. 20, at 11:10 a.m. This special event featured “rousing gospel music” and guest speaker Rev. Rudy Rasmus, noted author and global humanitarian. “Rasmus has been a friend of this church for several years,” said Rev. Shawn Anglim, pastor of First Grace UMC. “We invited him to ...

2014 Louisiana Skeeter Run scheduled for Oct. 11
October 20, 2013

The third annual Louisiana Skeeter Run, focused on raising funds and awareness for Imagine No Malaria, is slated for Saturday, Oct. 11, 2014! Last year’s event was enjoyed by approximately 2,500 volunteers and participants and raised nearly $78,000 for this life-saving initiative sponsored by The United Methodist Church. Mark your calendars, start to gather a “swat team” from your ...

Wesley Foundation campus ministers meet
October 09, 2013

Wesley Foundation campus ministers serving the Louisiana Annual Conference met Oct. 7-8 at The Wesley Center in Woodworth. The annual, two-day campus ministry fall review is a time of accountability, celebration and problem solving. Grants for 2014 for each ministry are also determined at this time. Pictured at The Wesley Center are, l-r, front row: Alan Johnson (UL Monroe), Angela ...

First UMC, Alexandria holds peanut butter drive
October 08, 2013

First United Methodist Church in Alexandria held a Peanut Butter Challenge during September for Hunger Action Month. A total of 113 jars of peanut butter were collected, and donated to the Food Bank of Central Louisiana on Oct. 4. For more information, please log into www.fumca.org or contact the church office at (318) 443-5696, or JBacon@fumca.org  

First UMC, Baton Rouge offers pet ministry
October 08, 2013

A total of 25 animals were injected with an identity microchip on Sunday evening at First United Methodist Church in Baton Rouge. A blessing of the pets immediately followed during the Oct. 6 event, which was sponsored by the church’s Peaceable Kingdom pet ministry. It was the first event of its kind for the church. “One of our members, Martha Littlefield, is a veterinarian at LSU’s Vet...

Health Care Reform
October 08, 2013

The Affordable Health Care Act has caused much confusion around the country. The confusion has certainly infiltrated our churches and especially my office. It has been difficult to add clarity to the conversation because others often interpret our remarks as a vote for health care reform or a vote against. However, we must understand the legislation because it is currently the law of the...

Magnolia UMC expands community partnerships
October 08, 2013

Magnolia United Methodist Church in Greenwell Springs is partnering with the Baton Rouge Home School Athletic Association by providing space for practices and home games for two of the association’s basketball teams. The "Eagles" are shown during practice in the church’s gymnasium. Rev. Lewis Morris, pastor, is shown with the basketball team, back row, left. The teams join several other...

New health care offered by Louisiana Annual Conference
October 08, 2013

By W. Ralph Ford, Pension and Benefits Officer The Conference Board of Pensions has done a good job of working to improve our health care benefits through Benefits Management Services (BMS). We now have an opportunity to take advantage of Blue Cross/Blue Shield’s vast nationwide network of providers. In the past, when one of our participants went out of network (usually out of state), ...

Centenary to send entire freshman class to Paris, "first in the nation"
October 07, 2013

SHREVEPORT, LA – Centenary College recently announced that students entering in fall 2014 will begin their college experience with immersive study in Paris, France. Centenary joins a very small number of colleges and universities across the nation that offers a shared international study experience to first-year students. “In my experience, Centenary must be the first in the nation to ...

Tropical Storm Karen approaching Gulf Coast
October 03, 2013

October 3, 2013 To all pastors and conference leaders: As per the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, Tropical Storm Karen has been named and is currently in the southern Gulf of Mexico. The conference is keeping a watchful eye on the direction of the storm. Please review the Conference website for our Conference Disaster Plan and prepare your churches if ...

United Methodist Women celebrate with a living timeline
October 03, 2013

The United Methodist Women national office launched a mixed-media engagement project—We Make It Happen: A Living Timeline—on Tuesday, Oct. 1. The ongoing submissions will be posted on Facebook and Pinterest. Through various means of written and artistic expression, this project asks women to tell the stories of United Methodist Women members who have inspired them: their mothers, ...

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