Sunday, June 9, 2019

Annual Conference

We were home for only a few days from vacation before heading to Lakeland for the 2019 Annual Conference gathering at Florida Southern college.

Tuesday night's PreConference Worship in Buckner Theater. 

Wednesday morning's Clergy Session. This is the group being commissioned that I will be working with in RIM over the next few years.

AND this is the fabulous group of 17 people being ordained this year that I have had the privilege to walk alongside in RIM for the last few years!!!

Wednesday night dinner at UM Temple for the MFSA dinner (Methodists for Social Action). There were over 267 folks present at this year's dinner.

My amazing clergy sister got a lot of stage time this year to talk about the fantastic work she's doing at FAMU Wesley - and half of this year's Bishop's Offering goes to help fund a building for her ministry finally!

On Thursday morning my covenant sisters hosted the annual Clergywomen's Breakfast. Over 165 women in the room - ordained, commissioned and licensed pastors and candidates for ministry! The students at my clergy sister Christy's FGCU Wesley created some amazing artwork to go along with our program. 

I popped over to Cokesbury's display at one point and found the devotional book I contributed to on sale! I'm an author!

We brought two youth delegates from Community with us this week. They had a really great week. Hunter is standing in the first picture right next to the bishop. And here I am with Riley our other delegate. He and I both got elected to represent the Florida Conference at Jurisdictional Conference next July in Lake Junaluska.

Grand mommy came over on Thursday night to celebrate with us for dinner and she bought me an election present. Here's everyone hanging out in the hotel room afterwards. 

Friday evening we went out for dinner to Chili's and we ran into Kelly Hollars! She was our first babysitter extraordinaire in Belleview/Ocala and she worked at Parker's elementary school then. She moved to Lakeland when we moved to Fruitland Park, got married and has now had two beautiful boys of her own. It was a delight to look up and see her coming over. I loved getting a hug from her!

We went back for worship that night. Latricia helped co-lead worship as we celebrated all kinds of great new ministries and expressions around the conference. Her IMPACT team from FAMU kicked things off. And our own Joey Landstedt was on the stage at one point as one of the designers for the Institute of Modern Worship - and then they played in a pop up worship experience outside later.

When we got back, I took the boys swimming at the pool while Daryl got us all packed up. 

On Saturday morning, the 46 clergy and laity elected to represent Florida at General Conference and Jurisdictional Conference and all the reserve delegates were asked up on stage to be prayed over for our work in the coming days. I am so honored by the trust that others have placed in me for this work. 

And then there was the ordination service. This beautiful lady - Ellen - was commissioned as a provisional deacon. I have loved working with her over the last few years of her journey with the BOM.

And then we got to celebrate our associate Loida's ordination. She has worked so hard for this moment and it was a joy to be with her as witnesses. 

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