Annual Conference 2014 is quickly approaching! This year's theme is the second part of the SEND Model many in the conference have adopted. It is, "The Great Commission: Engaging Disciples." We are most appreciative to Dr. Tim Thompson and his staff at Frazer Memorial UMC in Montgomery, AL, for hosting us again this year as well as Dr. Lawson Bryan and his staff at Montgomery FUMC for hosting the ordination service. This year we welcome Dr. Elaine Heath from Perkins School of Theology and President J. Cameron West of Huntingdon College. Please note several changes to annual conference.
First, note that annual conference is Sunday, June 1-Wednesday, June 4, 2014. Registration is now available by clicking here. You only need to register if you are making a purchase or reservation (meal reservations, journal/clergy directory purchase or nursery reservations). Attendance is expected of all clergy and lay members.
This year's missional offering is Imagine No Malaria, aligning our conference with our ongoing initiative to save 100,000 lives. Imagine No Malaria is an effort of The United Methodist Church to eliminate malaria deaths in Africa by 2015. Achieving this goal will require a comprehensive approach to fighting this disease, on a larger scale than all previous efforts. We will joyfully collect the final portion of this offering at opening worship on Sunday, June 1. In order to track our conference progress, please submit your first portion the week after Easter.
Meals will again be served at Frazer Memorial UMC for Monday and Tuesday lunch as well as the Laity Banquet Tuesday evening. Please make a reservation by clicking here if you plan to eat meals on campus or attend the banquet. Traditional group lunches may also choose to have their gatherings on campus and will handle their own catering.
Please note the ordination and commissioning services will be two separate services this year. The ordination service on Monday, June 2, will start at 7:00pm. The commissioning service will be held at Frazer Memorial UMC on Tuesday, June 3, at 1:30pm.
In order to be good stewards of the conference budget, we will again forego printed worship bulletins for several services. Instead, a downloadable "Guide to Annual Conference" pdf will be provided several weeks before annual conference. In it will be an agenda, worship bulletins, pages that were previously bag inserts and other relevant notes. You may wish to utilize it on your computer, tablet or phone, or print a hard copy on your own to bring with you. Printed worship bulletins will be provided to family members at the memorial service as a keepsake. The traditional ordination services bulletin will be a printed version as usual.
Should you or your agency wish to submit a digital "insert," it must be laid out and submitted no later than April 15. It will go in the "Guide to Annual Conference" behind the agenda and worship bulletins that will be electronically distributed to all clergy and delegates. All inserts must be one page, 8.5 x 11 submitted as a pdf to email@example.com. No late submissions will be accepted. All submissions must be affiliated with the United Methodist Church.
Your Brochure of Reports will be sent to your district office and either distributed at a gathering or picked up by each pastor. Please look for instructions from your district office.
Alabama-West Florida boards and agencies have been given priority for the limited number of available display spots. The deadline for their response is April 15. Other pertinent inquiries may go to firstname.lastname@example.org to be placed on a waiting list. Should there be openings, she will contact you in order of request. Requests must be affiliated with the United Methodist Church.
As a reminder, we encourage you to prayerfully consider nominating someone for one of our conference awards: The Alice Lee Award, Jane Walker Scholarship Award, Francis Asbury Award, Harry Denman Evangelism Award and the Local Church Heritage Award. Click here for more information.
Blocked rooms, some with special rates for hotels in Montgomery, have been posted. Check out www.awfumc.org/ac2014 for updates.
We look forward to seeing you at annual conference in Montgomery, AL, June 1-4, 2014!
Mary Catherine Phillips
Director of Communications