News

You Are Making a Difference in the Global Fight Against Malaria

published 10/25/2011
by Vance Morton* from UMNS and INM news reports In the last three years, thanks to global donations, it’s been possible distribute 300 million bed nets in sub-Saharan Africa. That’s enough to cover three quarters of the continent. More than 1.1 million children, pregnant mothers and working fathers are alive today because of gains in preventing and treating malaria. Since 2000 the malaria death rate has been reduced by 20 percent. At least 11 countries, where malaria is a high burden, have seen ...

An Act of Repentance With Tangible Results

published 10/23/2011
Learning from the Past, Living IntoThe Act of Repentance – The United Methodists Church’s plan to focus on healing relationships and tangible results. Is an act of repentance by United Methodists for the treatment of indigenous people a waste of time?   That question was posed early on by Bishop Melvin G. Talbert (retired) as an advisory group began to plan for a mandated act of “Healing Relationships with Indigenous Persons” at the 2012 General Conference. The denomination’s top-legislative ...

The United Methodist Church Launches Free Mobile Apps

published 10/19/2011
by Diane Degnan* and Vance Morton** Mobile device users can easily access information about The United Methodist Church on the go with a new free United Methodist application. Developed by United Methodist Communications and Music City Networks, the app is now available for free download for iPad and iPhone via the normal iMethods of iGetting iThings. It should be available for Android smartphone users by the end of next week. Check back to ctcumc.org for when it goes live. The Central Texas ...

Giving Changes Us...And the World

published 10/18/2011
In Bishop Lowry’s latest blog post regarding the letter he recently received from GCFA General Secretary Moses Kumar giving thanks to God and our conference for generosity shown even during difficult financial times, we are once again reminded of how our connectional giving enables United Methodists to do what no single church or district or annual conference could do by themselves. According to General Secretary Kumar, giving to the general church apportioned funds through the end of September ...

Outside the Box: The Gift that Cannot be Contained

published 10/13/2011
Church-wide Sermon Series and Multimedia Bundle Focuses on Advent Season From United Methodist Communications   At a time of year when most people are focused on what is inside the box—whether it is gifts they are giving or getting, “Outside the Box,” the latest sermon series and multimedia bundle produced by United Methodist Communications, is an opportunity to explore Christmas in a new way.    The four-week  sermon series is about how God used even the least likely Biblical characters like ...

Volunteers In Mission Training 2011

published 10/13/2011
by Kyland Dobbins* United Methodist Volunteers in Mission (UMVIM) Team Leader Training is here again and the deadlines to register are quickly approaching! If you plan to lead a mission team, be a part of mission team, or are simply just in the “getting interested” phase of missions to places like Johannesburg, South Africa or Joplin, Missouri, then UMVIM training is for you. Even if you have had the training in the past but have not gone through a class in the last five years, you need to ...

2012 General Conference Petitions Available

published 10/11/2011
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Global Missionaries Commissioned

published 10/11/2011
 from UMCOM.org reports After more than three weeks of training, ten United Methodists were commissioned and sent to missionary assignments around the world in a ceremony at First United Methodist Church in Flushing, New York, Oct. 11. Family, friends, and supporters from around the country and world participated in the the commissioning via a live web event.   Global Ministries executive Judy Chung says that the training helps prepare the individuals for the mission field while building a ...

Are You Prepared for Christmas?

published 10/10/2011
If Not (or even if you are), here are some last minute Advent Study ideas for your consideration by Vance Morton*   If you’ve ventured from the safe confines of your home in the past couple of weeks, or even if you haven’t but have turned on the television or opened a newspaper, you’ve doubtless been reminded that Christmas is coming soon. The ads and promotions and specials are everywhere as retailers and merchants compete for our dollars (and many times, our sense) during the holiday season. ...

Clergy Time Apart 2012

published 10/10/2011
div style="margin-bottom:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt;line-height: normal">Clergy Time Apart 2012 will be held Jan 24-25, 2012 at the Glen Lake Retreat Center’s Still Water Lodge. The keynote speaker for the 2012 retreat is Bishop Robert Schnase. For more information, click on the following links download a pdf of the flyer or contact Susan Briles via e-mail (susanbriles@ctcumc.org) or 8117-877-5222. You can register online by following this link or you may register by mail by downloading the ...

Tools to Help Build Healthy Churches in a World of Change

published 10/4/2011
div style="margin-bottom:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt;line-height: normal">by Vance Morton* div style="margin-bottom:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt;line-height: normal">  div style="margin-bottom:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt;line-height: normal">“Churches in the United States are in trouble – especially those affiliated with long-standing denominations.” div style="margin-bottom:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt;line-height: normal">  div style="margin-bottom:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt;line-height: normal">“...

Disaster Response Update

published 10/3/2011
Word has reached the Central Texas Conference Service Center that many across the conference are wanting to know how they can help assist (beyond just continuing prayers and making donations to UMCOR) in the efforts to clean up after the wildfires that have ravaged the Central Texas communities in and around Bastrop, Texas. According to Rev. Laraine Waughtal, CTC disaster response coordinator and pastor at Bluff Dale & Morgan Mill UMC, currently only ERT-trained personnel are allowed into the ...

ZOE Offers Transformational Ministry Opportunity

published 9/28/2011
by Teresa Sherwood* and Vance Morton**   Did you know that a child in Africa becomes an orphan every 14 seconds? Take a few moments and let that soak in…yep in about that amount of time, another precious child has been orphaned. When this happens, the burden of care falls to elderly family members and the oldest sibling left behind – all of them trapped in poverty. Children as young as 10-13 years old are the sole providers for their families. But as in everything where people of God are ...

World Communion Sunday 2011

published 9/26/2011
This Sunday, Oct. 2, is the official observance of World Communion Sunday – a time in which the members of our local congregations get to be in communion with Christians all over the world while assisting the United Methodist Church’s efforts to "press on toward the goal" of serving God in life-changing ministries. Of course, whenever we celebrate communion, we can be sure that we are in fellowship with our brothers and sisters in the body of Christ all over the world. But on this special ...

10 Days & 10 Ways for You to be Counted

published 9/23/2011
div style="margin-bottom:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt;line-height: normal">by Vance Morton*   The United Methodist Church, through UMCOR, is on the ground locally and globally, helping people after disasters. What are these workers experiencing? What issues are they facing and how are they making a difference? div style="margin-bottom:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt;line-height: normal;text-autospace:none">If these are questions that you may have had in the past when you’ve been asked to support UMCOR ...

Bishops Lowry and Bledsoe Join Togther to Support the Bishops' Call to Action

published 9/20/2011
“Stay Focused on The Mission” by Vance Morton* div style="margin-bottom:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt;line-height: normal">Bishop J. Michael Lowry, Episcopal Leader of the Central Texas Conference and Bishop W. Earl Bledsoe, the Episcopal Leader of the North Texas Conference released a joint statement Tuesday, Sept. 20 definitively stating their support for the Bishops’ Call to Action and subsequent recommendations by the Interim Operation Team. div style="margin-bottom:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt;li...

Rolling Down the Road of Change - Conference Leaders Gather and Discuss What's New with the Exodus Project

published 9/19/2011
by Vance Morton* div style="margin-bottom:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt;line-height: normal">Last Sunday, Sept. 18, on a beautiful afternoon that the Lord made for us, more than 60 conference leaders – lay and clergy – travelled from the five corners of the Central Texas Conference (CTC) and gathered at First United Methodist Hillsboro for a three-hour training session around the implementation and progress of the conference’s new organizational structure prescribed in the Exodus Project. Now then, ...

A Crash Course on Customer Service

published 9/16/2011
span style="font-size:10.0pt;Arial","sans-serif"; color:black">by Rev. Randy Wild* span style="font-size:10.0pt;Arial","sans-serif"; color:black">In the corporate world it is called customer service. In the church world we call it radical hospitality. In reality, it is the Golden Rule and the manifestation of God’s Love!!   span style="font-size:10.0pt;Arial","sans-serif"; color:black">I would like to share with you a video produced by WalkTheTalk.com that I came across on the Simple Truths ...

Self-Care Covenant Workshop Coming This November

published 9/14/2011
The servant leaders of the Central Texas Conference (CTC) are invited to a Self-Care Covenant Workshop, Nov. 7-8. The Self-Care Covenant Workshop provides a structured opportunity for individuals to examine their current life- and work-style choices and see how those choices are affecting their mental, emotional, physical, social and spiritual health. div style="margin-bottom:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt;line-height: normal">We are constantly presented with choices that either enhance or detract ...

2012 Financial Planning Workbooks Available

published 9/13/2011
  by David Stinson*   If you are a pastor, treasurer, financial secretary, finance chairperson, PPR chairpersons and/or involved in the financially planning/reporting process for your congregation, the following is for you.   As we all know, change has characterized the Central Texas Conference this year – new and fewer districts, new district offices, new personnel and structure in the Conference office are but a few of the many changes brought to life through the Exodus Project. As you look ...

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