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Invite younger person to experience the joy of Annual Conference

April 03, 2017
FROM THE BISHOP
R. LAWSON BRYAN

As we prepare for the 2017 Annual Conference session I encourage each local church to identify a younger person in their congregation and invite that person to attend Annual Conference on either Monday, June 5 or Tuesday, June 6.

This simple act will introduce others to the joy and energy that we will experience when we gather at Jekyll Island. It’s hard to describe until you see it for yourself. In addition to sending your official lay and clergy representatives, what younger person might you invite to Annual Conference? In just a few hours on Monday or Tuesday that younger person will get a taste of what it means to be Alive Together in Christ in the South Georgia Conference.

Those visiting on Monday will be able to take the pulse of our annual conference through the Vital Signs presentations that will include: small membership church vitality; ethnic ministries; new and revitalized congregations; the Young Clergy Academy; and the amazing growth of our college campus ministries. A highlight of the morning session will be the recognition of new clergy by the Board of Ordained Ministry. This allows us to see and hear how God is at work in the lives of those being commissioned or ordained.

Monday afternoon will feature the first teaching session by Dr. Lovett Weems, author of the book, “OVERFLOW: Increase Worship Attendance and Bear More Fruit.” That evening we will celebrate the Service of Ordination at 7 p.m. I look forward to that powerful worship experience as we lay hands upon those who have been called to serve the Body of Christ through ordained ministry.

Younger guests visiting on Tuesday will experience: Vital Signs related to our goal of a 10 percent increase in average worship attendance; morning and afternoon teaching sessions by Lovett Weems with practical guidance for increasing worship attendance; recognition of retiring clergy; and an afternoon Memorial Service for our clergy and clergy spouses who have died in the past year. Our plan is to conclude the afternoon session at 4:30 p.m. so we can move outside and enjoy the ocean-side opportunities provided by this lovely beach setting.

Jekyll Island is just the right venue to expand the pool of those who have attended an annual conference session. Give them a taste of the joy of being a Methodist – invite a younger person to come on Monday or Tuesday.

Alive Together in Christ,
Lawson Bryan

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