News

July 21, 2021

Fraud Alert: Spoofing emails being sent from fake address

The conference office has been notified of a spoofing email as well as a text making the rounds to various Alabama-West Florida United Methodists appearing as a message from Bishop Graves and other conference staff. This most ...

July 20, 2021

A Word from Bishop Graves: 2021 Charge Conference Season

Friends,   As we move into the second half of 2021, all of us continue to shift, pivot, and adapt our leadership to win people to Jesus and make disciples for the transformation of our corner of the world. A few constants remain ...

July 08, 2021

A Response to the Preliminary Report on the History of the KKK in Pensacola, FL

On Thursday, July 8, 2021, a first preliminary report from the University of West Florida Historic Trust was released. It tells of the history of the Pensacola Ku Klux Klan based on documents discovered in the personal files of ...

June 10, 2021

Annual Conference 2021: In Review

The 2021 Alabama-West Florida Annual Conference was virtually held June 6-9 with the theme, "Come to the Table." Bishop David Graves, presiding over his fifth annual conference session since becoming the resident bishop, welcomed ...

June 09, 2021

Annual Conference Day Four, June 9, 2021

Full Recap coming this Thursday! Stay tuned to www.awfumc.org/ac2021 for an an overview of the conference. You may use any content from this review in your local churches.  Morning Worship: The final day of annual conference began...

June 08, 2021

Annual Conference Day Three, June 8, 2021

Morning Worship: Day three of annual conference began with morning worship. Rev. Michael Cobb of Moundville, Stewart and China Grove UMCs offered the call to worship. Rev. Jenni Hendrix of Bethel UMC gave a prayer of illumination....

June 07, 2021

Annual Conference Day Two, June 7, 2021

Morning Worship: For the fourth year at annual conference, each day began with morning worship. Bishop David Graves made this addition so that the conference session would start with a sense of Holy time and carry that ...

June 06, 2021

Annual Conference Day One, June 6, 2021

The 2021 session of annual conference began this afternoon at 4:00pm. Due to the global pandemic, the conference was virtually held once again. To accommodate a revised virtual agenda, the conference began with the Service of ...

June 02, 2021

2021 Annual Conference Pre-conference Information

As previously announced, Annual Conference 2021 will be held virtually through Zoom webinar. The four-day annual conference session will be held June 6-9, 2021. A non-voting live stream option will be available for guests. Click ...

May 26, 2021

Call for Special SEJ Conference

(SEJ) - The College of Bishops of the Southeastern Jurisdiction of The United Methodist Church, in accordance with ¶521 of the 2016 Book of Discipline, calls for a special session of the jurisdictional conference on July 21, 2021....

May 18, 2021

AWF Disaster Response Update

The Alabama-West Florida Conference continues to respond in several areas of our conference. Below is an update of the disaster response work.  Hurricane Michael Made landfall October 10, 2018 As our UMCOR grant for Hurricane ...

May 17, 2021

Graves Continues as Bishop in Alabama-West Florida Conference, Also Assumes Episcopal Leadership Duties in South Georgia

The Council of Bishops, in conjunctions with the Southeastern Jurisdiction (SEJ), announced the projected Episcopal assignments on May 14, 2021. Click here to read the published assignments.   Bishop David Graves will continue to ...

April 28, 2021

Alabama-West Florida Conference Awarded Grant for Local Church Initiatives

The Community Foundation of South Alabama (CFSA) awarded $268,600 to 22 nonprofit organizations across its service area in Southwest Alabama. These funds will support programs that provide resources and basic needs to those in ...

April 27, 2021

Your Help is Needed: Storm Damage at Blue Lake Camp

This past Saturday, April 23, 2021, Blue Lake was hit by a severe wind storm. As you can see in the photo above, the camp has suffered significant damage from trees falling on the Oakwood Lodge roof. In addition to the trees on ...

April 23, 2021

United Methodist Women Program Advisory Group Hold First Meeting of 2021-2024 Quadrennium

The 2021-2024 United Methodist Women Program Advisory Group gathered via Zoom for its first annual meeting March 11-13, 2021.  This global gathering included United Methodist Women Director, Betty Helms representing the ...

April 19, 2021

UMC, Marianna business owners team up to provide housing

(Kari Barlow for the AWFUMC) - Business owners in the Marianna area have joined forces to make home ownership a reality for several families displaced by Hurricane Michael.   “In Marianna, we are up to 11 brand-new houses,” said ...

April 07, 2021

Bishop Announces 2021-2022 Cabinet and Staff Changes

Bishop David Graves, resident bishop of the Alabama-West Florida Conference, has announced the four district superintendents who will serve and lead the implementation of the new district model, announced on May 5, 2020.   Dr. ...

March 23, 2021

A Word from Bishop Graves: May 8 Cancellation

Friends,   Yesterday the Council of Bishops announced that the called session of General Conference, to be held on May 8, has been cancelled. The Council of Bishops determined that this was in the best interest of the church.   ...

March 17, 2021

A Word from Bishop Graves: Updated Appointment Timeline

Connectional friends,   On January 25, 2021, I shared this original timeline of the appointment making process. While the cabinet and I have adhered to this timeline thus far, we will need to adjust our schedule due to the ...

March 16, 2021

A Word from Bishop Graves: COVID protocols

Friends of the Alabama-West Florida Conference,    One year ago the world began to shut down due to COVID-19. It is an emotional whirlwind to think back on how little we knew about the virus and the implications it would have on ...

March 12, 2021

An Update from the AWF Delegation

Friends in the Alabama-West Florida Conference,  I hope this finds all of our brothers and sisters in the Alabama/West Florida Conference doing well and finding hope in the Lord Jesus Christ during these unusual times. It has now ...

March 01, 2021

A Word from Bishop Graves: A Response to General and Jurisdictional Conference News

Friends and Colleagues,   On Thursday, February 25, 2021, extensive plans related to General and Jurisdictional Conferences were released by the Commission on General Conference and the Council of Bishops. Without a doubt there ...

February 25, 2021

Bishops call Special Session of General Conference, issue timeline forward

WASHINGTON, D.C. – In response to the further postponement of the 2020 General Conference, the Council of Bishops (COB) is calling a Special Session of the General Conference of The United Methodist Church (UMC) to be convened ...

February 25, 2021

General Conference Postponed to 2022

(Commission on the General Conference) - Meeting on February 20, the Commission on the General Conference made a decision to further postpone the 2020 General Conference until August 29 – September 6, 2022 in Minneapolis, Minn. as...

February 24, 2021

Auburn UMC a key player in staffing mass vaccination site

(Kari Barlow for AWFUMC) - In late January, Joe Davis, director of mission and outreach at Auburn UMC, got a request that was a little daunting.   UMC clergy member Laura Eason, who serves as the hospital chaplain for East Alabama...

February 10, 2021

Wellness Program 2021

Dear Eligible Participants,   Welcome to the AWFUMC Wellness program. 2020 was without a doubt a challenging year. While some of you were able to make your health and wellness a priority, others were not able to do so.   The ...

February 03, 2021

Conference Celebrates Faithful Missional Giving Despite Challenging Year

He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; ...

January 27, 2021

2021 Annual Conference Information

Due to the continued threat of COVID-19, Annual Conference 2021 will be held virtually through Zoom webinar. Several important services will be by invitation only to honor the work of pastoral candidates.   The Zoom clergy session...

January 25, 2021

A Word from Bishop Graves: the 2021 Appointment Process

January 25, 2020 Colleagues and Friends,  Currently the cabinet, pastors, staff-parish committees, and churches are working on the upcoming appointment year: July 2021 to June 2022. I have found that cabinet transparency is vital...

December 15, 2020

Conference Awarded UMCOR grants for Hurricane Sally

(Rev. Chris Ackerman) - I am excited to share with you that we have received two grants from UMCOR to assist us in our Hurricane Sally recovery. The first grant in the amount of $370,000 will be used for direct funding. It is our...

November 19, 2020

A Video Message from Bishop Graves: Thanksgiving and Advent

November 19, 2020 As we move into the holiday season, Bishop David Graves invites you to hear a brief video message. Click here for video. We invite you to share this message with your church and on social media. Click here for ...

November 05, 2020

Zirlott Road UMC layperson leads storm relief efforts

Clayton Schwind’s phone rang as he cut tree limbs and cleared storm debris from his Mon Louis Island yard. On other end of the line were Hurricane Sally survivors who needed help. Schwind, Zirlott Road UMC’s disaster coordinator,...

November 04, 2020

Needs Assessments Continue after Zeta and Sally

One week ago today Hurricane Zeta raced through the Alabama-West Florida Conference, just weeks after Hurricane Sally made landfall along the coast. While Hurricane Sally left more long-term damage, Zeta added additional burdens ...

November 04, 2020

District connectional system vital after storms

(Kara WItherow for AWFUMC) - When a disaster strikes, the first 72 hours are critical. That’s why it’s necessary, Rev. Jared Parker says, to have a system in place in order to respond efficiently and effectively. Since late ...

November 02, 2020

Bishop Announces Alabama-West Florida Coalition for Dismantling Racism

Under the leadership of Bishop David Graves, the Alabama-West Florida Conference has established The Coalition for Dismantling Racism. This group of leaders met Thursday, October 29, 2020, to begin critical work around racism.   ...

November 02, 2020

A friendship forged in crisis, rooted in faith

(Kara Witherow for the AWFUMC) - Amid the storms of life, it’s important to have friends to help you weather the worst of times. With a partnership forged in crisis, Rev. Chris Ackerman and Amelia Fletcher are that kind of friend...

October 29, 2020

The Aftermath of Hurricane Zeta

There is no dispute 2020 has been an unprecedented year. Hurricanes have been no exception. After still reeling from Hurricane Sally just weeks ago, Hurricane Zeta packed a powerful punch in the Alabama-West Florida Conference. ...

October 26, 2020

An Election Day Call to Prayer from Bishop Graves

October 26, 2020 Today, October 26, 2020, Bishop Debra Wallace-Padgett (North Alabama Conference Resident Bishop) and I released a call to prayer for the upcoming election on November 3. As you know, she and I share Episcopal ...

October 20, 2020

Hurricane Sally Update, October 20

Friends,   Hurricane Sally made landfall on September 16, 2020, which was 16 years to the day that Hurricane Ivan damaged the same area. To date there has been close to 60,000 individuals who have registered for FEMA assistance. ...

October 13, 2020

An Invitation from Bishop Graves

Friends,   One of my biggest struggles of the COVID era is the lack of in-person fellowship and time together. As clergy women and men, many of us crave that personal interaction to build relationships with one another. Although ...

October 12, 2020

A Word from Bishop Graves: November 3rd election

Dear Friends, As the November 3rd election approaches, I am reminded of my grandfather and uncle who served as political officials in Knoxville, Tennessee, where I grew up. My uncle served as County Trustee and County Mayor. ...

September 26, 2020

2020 Annual Conference: In Review

The 2020 Alabama-West Florida Annual Conference, originally scheduled for June 7-10, was held today, September 26, via Zoom. Bishop David Graves, presiding over his fourth annual conference session since becoming the resident ...

September 21, 2020

2020 Annual Conference Pre-conference Information

As previously announced, Annual Conference 2020 will be held virtually through Zoom webinar. The half-day annual conference session will be held on Saturday, September 26, 2020 at 1:00pm. A non-voting live stream option will be ...

September 17, 2020

Hurricane Sally Update, September 17

Hurricane Sally has moved out of the Alabama-West Florida Conference. Below is the latest disaster response information.  Assessment & Needs Flooding and roof damage are significant issues in the southern parts of our conference. ...

September 16, 2020

Hurricane Sally Update, September 16

As Hurricane Sally moves through our conference, we continue to assess the damage and communicate with our disaster recovery leadership team and clergy.  -We give thanks that we have not heard of any injuries or deaths related to ...

September 15, 2020

Hurricane Sally Conference Response: September 15, 2020

Hurricane Sally is slated to make landfall at some point tomorrow. It is a remarkably slow-moving storm and causes concern for historic flooding and storm surge. The Alabama-West Florida Conference is already staging relief ...

September 14, 2020

Hurricane Sally Preparations

Friends, Yet again, we call on our conference for prayer in preparation for Hurricane Sally making landfall. At this time, most accurate models have it hitting from New Orleans to the Mississippi Gulf Coast. This puts parts of our...

September 01, 2020

Ackerman Offers Guidance After Hurricane Laura

AWF Disaster Response Director, Rev. Chris Ackerman, has some very important words and advice for our conference after going through a traumatic hurricane just two years ago. Please carefully read his guidance. (Rev. Chris ...

August 31, 2020

Alabama-West Florida Conference Transitions to New Conference Structure

As previously announced on May 5, 2020, the Alabama-West Florida Conference has made significant budget cuts that have led to the restructuring of staff. All staff transitions are complete as of today, September 1, 2020. To ...

August 27, 2020

Hurricane Laura Response

In the wake of Hurricane Laura, we continue to pray for those affected by the storm. Bishop David Graves is requesting that churches begin collecting special offerings so that we are prepared to purchase critical items or donate ...

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