CTC Growth Continues for the 16th Consecutive Month! Overall Growth at 1.3% in May, NFC Growth at 5.2%
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Lamar E. Smith Center for Evangelism & Church Growth Receives Prism Award for Coaching

published 10/8/2015
The North Texas Chapter of the International Coach Federation (ICF) honored the CTC’s Lamar E. Smith Center for Evangelism and Church Growth (CECG) and the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma as co-recipients of its annual Prism Award. The CECG team was nominated and selected for the award based on Healthy Church Initiative (HCI) coaching that has helped to develop leaders, address strategic institutional goals and yield measureable positive results for many of the local churches in our conference.   The...

Clergywomen Credited for the Growth in Young Elders According to 2015 Clergy Age Report

published 9/9/2015
by the Lewis Center for Church Leadership* and Vance Morton**   In 2005, the United Methodist Church reported a total of 850 elders under the age of 35, which equated to a historic low of only 4.69 percent of active elders. Since that low-water mark, the denomination has rebounded and sustained a slow but relatively steady uptick in that number. An uptick that is due solely to the number of young female clergy being ordained as elders.   According to the Clergy Age Trends in the United Methodist...

Watermelon, Football and Transformation in Hubbard, Texas

published 8/24/2015
by Bob Rainey*   What do free watermelon and God's transformational power have in common? More than you'd think.   A few summers ago, the First United Methodist Church of Hubbard served ice cold watermelon to the Hubbard Jaguar football team after the first day of full pad workouts. (If you think the Texas summer is hot, try working out in a suit of football armor in August!) Our goal was to let the team and coaches know that we support them and wish them luck for the upcoming season. The cold ...

New Executive Director for Glen Lake Camp Announced

published 8/20/2015
The Central Texas Conference and Glen Lake Camp and Retreat Center have named Natalie Davidson as the new Executive Director for the camp.   Natalie brings a wealth of experience in camping ministry as well as a passion for the outdoors and leadership, team building and organizational skills to the Glen Lake team. For the last six years, Natalie has worked as a director at the camp and retreat center, most recently as the camp’s director of Operations, where she was instrumental in managing ...

Developing a Deeper Life with God to be the Focus of the Good & Beautiful Conference

published 8/7/2015
The Good & Beautiful Conference is coming to the Central Texas Conference Sept. 11-12 at First Methodist Church Mansfield. The conference is sponsored by the Central Texas Conference, First Mansfield and White’s Chapel UMC and everyone from the CTC is invited and encouraged to attend. Dr. James Bryan Smith and his team from the Apprentice Institute will be in Mansfield for the conference to help lead participants in discussions and training on how to help people develop a deeper life with God.  ...

Discipeship Fast Track Bible Study

published 7/30/2015
For more information on Fast Track or if you are interested in being a Beta Test church, visit disciplefasttrack.com or email disciplefasttrackinformation@gmail.com. CTC Churches Offered the Opportunity to Beta Test a Brand New Disciple Bible Study by Bishop Richard Wilke, Retired Since 1987, Disciple Bible Study has reached nearly 3 million people worldwide, introducing the grand sweep of Scripture in a 34-week format. Now Disciple Fast Track maintains the integrity and principles of the ...

CTCSC has officially moved out of its downtown Fort Worth home

published 7/7/2015
CTCSC Team to Begin the Move-In Friday, July 31 The CTCSC staff will begin unpacking boxes and settling into their new work home on the campus of Texas Wesleyan University (3200 E. Rosedale, 76105) this Friday, July 31. While a few technical and telecommunications glitches are always possible when moving into a new building, those are expected to be minimal. The CTCSC main phone number (817-877-5222) and fax line (817-332-4609) have not changed, nor have any of the team’s email addresses – only ...

CTCYM 2015 - Update from the Road

published 6/19/2015
Editor’s Note: If you’ve ever been on, much less been charged with leading a Youth Mission trip, you know how precious a commodity sleep can be. Now take that responsibility and add 1200 people across 15 locations. It makes one need a nap just thinking about it. Well, it seems that CTC Coordinator of Youth Ministry Claire Condrey’s level of excitement over all that is happening at CTCYM this week won out over her need to catch some zzz’s. Here’s an update from the front lines of CTCYM.  by ...

United Methodist Bishops Call for Prayers and Support Following Charleston Shooting

published 6/18/2015
“May each church and each individual    Christ follower related to the Central Texas Conference set aside special time for prayer.” –  Bishop Mike Lowry   by Vance Morton*  As the news continues to unfold following the tragic shooting deaths of nine people attending a Bible study at the historic Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C., Bishops from around the connection are reaching out to their conferences as well as their colleague bishops in the African Methodist ...

A Call to Prayer in the Wake of Deadly Church Shooting in Charleston, S.C.

published 6/18/2015
As the news continues to unfold following last night’s deadly shooting at the 180-year-old Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church, a historic black church in Charleston, S.C., Christians and people of faith around the country and the world are offering up prayers of support, healing and hope.   Bishop Lowry invites the churches and people of the Central Texas Conference to offer up prayers of support and healing for the members of Emanuel AME Church . “First, foremost and always, let ...

Three General Conference Delegations from Texas Meet and Discuss the Future of The UMC

published 5/27/2015
What does the future hold for the United Methodist Church? That was just one of the many vital topics up for discussion during a May 15 meeting of three General Conference delegations from Texas.   The full delegations from the Central Texas, North Texas and Rio Texas Conferences gathered at the historic St. Johns UMC in Georgetown, Texas to begin the process of forming and building relationships between the delegations. The meeting also provided a ripe forum in which the delegates could discuss...

Energizing and Equipping Local Church Disciple Making and Faith Formation Systems

published 5/14/2015
by Dr. Randy Wild*   During the past couple of years, I’ve been engaged in several conversations with local church leaders on a variety of subjects. One of the topics that seems to bubble up with fervent regularity is the future of the conference and our local churches, especially around the need for a systematic approach to disciple making and establishing faith formation as a life-long practice. The faith formation process needs to be developmentally appropriate for any age – from toddlers to...

Effectively Responding to a Disaster Requires Exercising Patience and Process in the Midst of Chaos

published 5/13/2015
by Rev. Laraine Waughtal* and Vance Morton** The recent (and apparently ongoing) strings of Texas spring storms have delivered needed rain to much of the state. However, they have also brought tornadoes, strong straight-line winds, hail and, in some areas, too much of that good thing we call rain. The news reports, videos and photos from the communities most impacted probably has many of you wondering how and when the conference is going to respond and roll in with assistance. The answer is ...

A Church Without Walls - First UMC Groesbeck Brings Church Out To Its Community

published 5/11/2015
by Rev. Steve Nance*   Two years ago, the people of First United Methodist Church in Groesbeck, Texas adopted the mission statement of the Central Texas Conference as their own. The mission statement was further enhanced and reads: “Our purpose as a mission church is to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. Our threefold approach to making disciples is to engage every participant in passionate worship, Bible study through accountability in a small group setting and ...

Remembering Jim Wright: Skilled Politician, Captivating Storyteller, Persuasive Orator, Loving Servant of Jesus Christ.

published 5/8/2015
by Vance Morton* Much has been written and remembered about the political life and impact of James Claude “Jim” Wright Jr. since his passing last Wednesday, May 6, at the age of 92, and rightfully so. Jim Wright served the country, the state and, most directly, the Fort Worth and North Texas area as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives for more than 30 years, culminating in his election as Speaker of the U. S. House of Representatives in 1987.   “Jim represented the people of his ...

President of United Methodist Council of Bishops Calls for Prayer and Healing

published 5/1/2015
United Methodist bishops from Africa, Asia, Europe and the United States have come together in Berlin for the 2015 Council of Bishops meeting, which scheduled to run through May 7. Coinciding with Friday’s opening session, Bishop Warner H. Brown, Jr., president of the Council of Bishops, sent an open letter to the people of The United Methodist Church requesting that they join together in prayer for the church and the world. In an email from Berlin, Bishop Lowry echoed Bishop Brown’s call for ...

A Statement from the General Commission on Religion and Race General Secretary on the Civil Unrest in Baltimore.

published 4/30/2015
by Erin Hawkins*   On Monday, April 27, another young black man was laid to rest in Baltimore, Md., amidst unanswered questions surrounding his death while in police custody. Peaceful protests were overshadowed that same night when riots erupted on the streets of the city, leading to acts of violence and destruction of personal property. Suddenly the unlawful acts of a few overshadowed the positive, peaceful work of many seeking justice and answers to longstanding problems of racial inequity in ...

Getting Out of God's Way

published 4/29/2015
by Bob Rainey*   17 years ago, a food pantry ministry began in Hubbard, Texas and was operated out of the Hubbard First Church of God. As the years rolled by, the Hubbard Ministerial Alliance (HMA) became increasingly more involved in the pantry and began to implement its plans on how to “improve” food pantry operations. These “improvements” eventually lead to relocating the pantry from the church and into an empty building in town and changing the Hubbard Food Pantry into a once-a-month ...

From Hammers to Hugs - Disaster Relief Calls for a Wide Variety of Spiritual Gifts

published 4/27/2015
by Rev. Laraine Waughtal*   As important as it is to repair and rebuild homes following a disaster, it is even more important to address the emotional and spiritual care of those affected. The work of the CTC Early Response Team is always about the people first, and following a disaster, I’ve found that what people need to do before they can begin to heal and rebuild is tell their story. They need to share and talk about what they have experienced and how it has impacted their life. One of the ...

Children's Ministry Greenhouse Nourishes and Grows the Leaders of CTC Children

published 4/22/2015
by Rev. Dawne Phillips* and Vance Morton**   Children's ministry leaders from both the Central Texas and North Texas Conferences gathered at FUMC Arlington April 17 – 18 to hear and learn from with Rev. Dr. Leanne Hadley. The two-day event featured a wide variety of workshops and teaching times designed to nurture the participant’s understanding of disciple making with children.   Dr. Hadley, who has served as minister to children and their families at First United Methodist Church, Colorado ...

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