News & Views

The Florida Conference is dedicated to bringing you news stories about United Methodists here and beyond. Whether the news is about the global church or the church on the corner, look for it here. You’ll also find thought-provoking commentaries and opportunities for education and fellowship.

In addition, News & Views is pleased to bring you an interactive Bible crossword puzzle, with new puzzles available weekly. Click here to access this week's crossword puzzle. Have a story to share? Email or click here to use our convenient “Submit a story” form.

Image courtesy of Copyright © by Cliff Leitch.

October 14, 2021

Statue of Mary McLeod Bethune will soon make history at the U.S. Capitol

Educator and civil rights activist Mary McLeod Bethune will soon make history as the first Black person to have a state-commissioned statue in the U.S. Capitol's Statuary Hall. Bethune was a pioneering Methodist who advised U.S. presidents and founded what is now Bethune-Cookman University in Daytona Beach, Florida — one of 11 institutions supported by the United Methodist Black College Fund.

October 14, 2021

UMC leaders share important information for churches sponsoring Scout troops

While the United Methodist Ad Hoc Committee continues to engage in mediation related to the bankruptcy case, the Committee and the BSA have issued a joint statement which addresses how United Methodist congregations that sponsor Scouting programs should proceed in the meantime regarding expiring charters or facility use agreements.

October 08, 2021

"Is the community different because we're here?"

At Temple Terrace United Methodist Church, the answer is yes. The church is different, too.

October 06, 2021

Hispanic Heritage Month reminds all of their profound impact on the UMC

The impact of Hispanics on Florida is profound. As of the 2020 US Census, they make up 25.5% of the ...

October 01, 2021

31 Ways to Honor Your Pastor for Clergy Appreciation Month

Creative ideas to show your appreciation with gifts your pastor can actually use!

September 28, 2021

As the garden grows at New Life UMC, so does its community involvement

Rev. Dr. Latricia Scriven had ambitious plans when she was named the pastor of New Life UMC in ...

September 24, 2021

Five ways to celebrate Hispanic heritage month

Hispanic Heritage Month is a time when all United Methodists in the United States can celebrate diversity and the positive contributions of their Hispanic/Latino brothers and sisters to their communities and congregations.

September 22, 2021

Application period for Ware Grants opens Sept. 24

The leadership team at Branches United Methodist Church knew something was missing. Rev. Tony ...

September 13, 2021

General Commission on UM Men set "Give Day" for Oct. 18

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything ...

September 10, 2021

Prayer for the 20th Anniversary of the September 11th Attacks

Heavenly Father, we commend to your mercy and grace all who died in the September eleventh attacks and all who have died in the past twenty years while laboring to end terrorism.

September 08, 2021

Twenty years later, the memories of Sept. 11 remain vivid

Anyone old enough to remember the horror of Sept. 11, 2001, certainly remembers where they were when...

September 07, 2021

Disaster Recovery Updates

Hurricane Ida, Afghan Resettlement, Haiti Earthquake & COVID Vaccination Clinics

August 24, 2021

"What should have been a science class became a politics class"

A message from Bishop Carter as COVID-19 rages: There is resistance to a vaccine. No blame or shame here, just lament. I care about you.

August 18, 2021

"You absolutely could feel Jesus in the room"

Florida United Methodist churches and volunteers stepped up to provide aid and comfort at the site of the Surfside condo tragedy.

August 14, 2021

Prayer & Support for Haiti after 7.2 Magnitude Earthquake

We are asking congregations to lift the Haitian people in prayer and donate to relief efforts.

August 13, 2021

Big Pine UMC uses Hearts, Hammers & Hands to help its community

The Florida Keys have been romanticized in literature and song over the years. Still, residents of ...

August 06, 2021

How to facilitate hybrid worship

As the pandemic has continued to ebb and restrictions lessen, churches have been returning to in-person worship services. But at the same time, church leaders throughout the country are also encountering a new reality: hybrid worship.

August 03, 2021

Baseball icon Jackie Robinson's Methodist faith

When dealing with the difficulties of being the first Black player in Major League Baseball, Jackie Robinson had a little-known ally helping him stay stoic and perform well through the ordeal. He had faith.

August 02, 2021

Discussing Christian nationalism — carefully

A new resource on Christian nationalism is meant to assist United Methodists to talk about the issue. It provides a format that includes how to set up the room, structure the conversation and keep things civil.

August 01, 2021

God’s Faithfulness in a Wilderness Season

A sermon taken from John 6 and Exodus 16 and preached by Bishop Ken Carter at First United Methodist Church in Lakeland, Florida on August 1, 2021.

July 29, 2021

Updated FL Conference COVID Guidance - July 29, 2021

We wrote last week and shared our concerns about the rising COVID-19 cases in Florida. We write again this week because of the continued increase of infections and the updated CDC guidelines related to masks

July 23, 2021

Seven Ways to Pray for Cuba in This Present Moment

Photo by Mike DuBose, UMNS

July 20, 2021

A Message From Bishop Carter About COVID-19

  Dear Florida Conference Clergy and Laity: We continue to pray for you as you navigate this ...

July 19, 2021

Rini Hernandez hears Cuban people chant "We're not afraid anymore"

Rev. Dr. Rinaldo "Rini" Hernandez initially couldn't believe the reports out of Cuba. People were ...

July 15, 2021

Methodists United in Prayer: A Call to Action for the People of Cuba

Methodists United in Prayer condemns all violence against the people of Cuba.

July 13, 2021

The Carpenter's Shop brings toys and joy to thousands of children

A recent Community Assessment of Older Adults in Pinellas County reported that 37% of them report ...

July 12, 2021

FLUMC summer interns learn the pastoral experience

Meet some of the 2021 pastoral interns in the Florida Conference of the United Methodist Church. ...

July 08, 2021

A statement on the assassination of Haitian President Jovenel Moïse

The Florida Haiti Covenant stands together with those in Haiti. We will continue to seek out ways to work together to make our world a safer place.

July 04, 2021

Freedom is the Right Thing (Seed), at the Right Time

July 4, 2021 sermon by Rev. Dr. Sharon G. Austin at Lake Junaluska

June 29, 2021

United Methodists lead with their hearts in Miami disaster relief effort

So much was lost in the catastrophe at the Champlain Towers South in Surfside. Friends, family ...

June 28, 2021

Surfside Condo Collapse Disaster Relief Effort

Hundreds of people have been displaced from their homes and rescue teams continue to lead search and recovery efforts. In addition to prayer, you can provide support for the victims.

June 19, 2021

FLUMC takes a major stand for creation care

One of the major developments at the recently completed Annual Conference was that delegates ...

June 12, 2021

Annual Conference closes with appointments, prayer, and a challenge

The second and final day of the 2021 Florida United Methodist Annual Conference began with a ...

June 12, 2021

Bishop Carter announces fixing of appointments

LAKELAND – Bishop Ken Carter and the appointive cabinet of the Florida Conference announced new appointments today, and they will become effective July 1.

June 12, 2021

Bishop Carter Announces the Projection of Two New District Superintendents

Dr. David Allen and Rev. Emily Hotho will begin appointments as district superintendents in the Florida Conference starting January 1, 2022.

June 11, 2021

Craig Smelser elected Florida Conference Treasurer

The Council on Finance and Administration unanimously recommended Craig Smelser as the Interim ...

June 11, 2021

Opening day of Annual Conference brings challenges, hope, and news

The Florida Conference of the United Methodist Church convened its second consecutive virtual Annual...

June 04, 2021

FLUMC to establish Rev. Geraldine Williams-McClellan Scholarship at Gammon Seminary

Shortly after Rev. Dr. Candace Lewis was named the President-Dean at Gammon Theological Seminary in ...

May 27, 2021

FDLE makes arrests in scheme to steal money from churches

More than 600 churches throughout the country, including 355 in Florida, were victimized by what law officials called "a low-tech but well-organized effort to steal hundreds of thousands of dollars." Some United Methodist churches in Florida were targets.

May 26, 2021

"I feel like God is going to build something new"

The pandemic forced dramatic changes throughout the Florida Conference of the United Methodist Church. The result, though, may be stronger and more creative churches as they apply the lessons learned.

May 24, 2021

Peace & Unity Laity Letter

A letter to the laity from the Association of Annual Conference Lay Leaders

May 23, 2021

The Holy Spirit for a Dispirited People: “Kindle in Us the Fire of Your Love"

A sermon preached by Bishop Ken Carter on the Day of Pentecost, June 23, 2021, at First United Methodist Church in Winter Park, Florida

May 17, 2021

Time is running out to register for pre-Annual Conference workshops

The deadline to register is May 24 for these informative free workshops.

May 14, 2021

A COVID-19 update following CDC announcement

Updated COVID-19 Guidance Dear Clergy and Laity of the Florida Conference: We continue ...

May 14, 2021

Bishop Carter to Serve Western NC & Florida Conferences Starting Sept. 1

On May 14, the Council of Bishops approved episcopal supervision recommendations for the Southeastern Jurisdiction (SEJ), due to the retirement of four bishops.

May 13, 2021

Meeting the musical challenge of a virtual Annual Conference

When leaders decided to hold a virtual Annual Conference for the second consecutive year, Jeremy ...

May 10, 2021

Grants go to fight COVID-19 in India

A man runs past the burning funeral pyres of people who died from COVID-19, during a mass cremation at a crematorium in New Delhi, India. The escalating crisis in India will be addressed by The United Methodist Church through grants to entities there who have been partners in the past. Photo by Adnan Abidi, Reuters.

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