Affected by Disaffiliation? Find out how you can move forward in mission in South Georgia

Moving Forward in Mission


The mission of the United Methodist Church is to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.  This is our mandate regardless of what circumstances come our way and pull us off track.   We recognize during the recent months there have been difficult situations in our local churches due to disaffiliations and this has been a very painful time that has caused hurt to many.  If this is something you are dealing with, you are not alone.  We want to help you continue to move on in mission in whatever capacity God is calling you.  If you find yourself lost and displaced by the disaffiliation of your church, below are some resources that will help you stay on track as we continue to move and press into the UMC’s mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.  

To see an in-depth plan for what moving forward looks like, click here. For the basics, look at our FAQs below.
 

Where do I go now? 

We have found that people are affected by disaffiliation in many different ways.  Some need a period of time to grieve the loss of community and their “spiritual home.”  Others may be excited by this opportunity to do something new and may feel God calling them to take on the leadership to be part of something new.  Still others might want to transition into an existing UMC church in their area.  
 

If you’d like to find pastoral care for healing and processing emotions due to disaffiliation, e-mail Anne Bosarge at abosarge@sgaumc.com.  We will set you up with a pastor near you who can help you walk through what you are feeling and take the next steps.  
 

If you’d like to start something new, e-mail Anne Bosarge at abosarge@sgaumc.com and let her know!  We are doing a variety of leadership trainings in 2023 and we would like to help you take your next step toward starting a fresh expression or a home church in conjunction with an already established congregation that can support you and resource you along the way.  
 

If you are looking for an existing church near you and don’t know where the closest UMC is, click here to see a listing of all our churches in South Georgia: https://www.sgaumc.org/churchlocator.
 

Please complete this form if you'd like to stay connected with a South Georgia Conference church post-disaffiliation.
 

What is a Fresh expression of church? 

A Fresh Expression of church is a new way of doing church that happens outside the church, primarily for people who would never go to an established church.  You can find out more about Fresh Expressions here: https://www.umcdiscipleship.org/equipping-leaders/fresh-expressions .  If you’re interested in learning more or joining us for a training about Fresh Expressions in SGA, e-mail Anne Bosarge at abosarge@sgaumc.com

Imagine Day, a day of learning all about Fresh Expressions and what they can look like in the UMC, will be on Saturday, April 15th, at Epworth by the Sea.  To register, click here.
 

How do I know if I’m called to start a Fresh Expression?

Fresh Expressions are most successful when led by people who already have existing relationships within a community of unchurched people.  They often have already done the work of building relational credibility with people who are open to getting involved in an entry-level faith-based community.  If you have the desire to win people to Jesus, the passion to start something new, and the willingness to learn, you might be just what we need in SGA!  If you’re wondering if you have what it takes, read more about Fresh Expression Pioneers here: https://freshexpressions.com/2016/11/09/5-characteristics-fresh-expression-pioneers.
 

What if there are a group of us who want to stay together? 

We want to help you be tethered to an established church for support and pastoral care as needed while equipping you to lead a home church right where you are.  Contact your District Superintendent and let him/her know about your desire to continue meeting.  They can help you set up an online giving platform as well as let you know of other resources available to you within your district.  
 

Coastal District: Rev. David Thompson- david@sgaumc.com

North East District: Rev. Stephen Grantham- stephen@sgaumc.com

North Central District: Rev. Craig Hutto- craig@sgaumc.com

North West District: Rev. Steve Patton- steve@sgaumc.com

South West District: Rev. Doreen Smalls- doreen@sgaumc.com

South Central District: Rev. Paula Lewis- paulalewis@sgaumc.com
 

I don’t have a big house.  How can I have a home church? 

Having church in a home is much different than going to an established church building for worship.  Don’t try to replicate everything you were doing in your last church experience!  It will not be the same.  The programming and ministry from your last church isn’t going to fit this new smaller expression of church.  
 

Once we schedule a meeting in our home, what do we do? 

There are many ways for you to lead a home church!  Talk to your group and ask them what is specifically important to their worship and create your own order of worship and how you will worship together.  Below are two suggestions for how to structure your time together.   
 

  1. Follow the lectionary- https://www.umcdiscipleship.org/worship-planning/planning-resources You don’t need to study every passage in the lectionary, just pick a passage or two to focus on.  Consider this flow to your service: 
    1. Opening prayer
    2. Lord’s Prayer
    3. Old Testament Reading
    4. Prayer Requests
    5. New Testament Reading
    6. What does God want you to know about Him? What does God reveal about you? 
    7. Closing prayer – ask for prayer requests from one or two different people each week
  1. Church Online- Your group can join online with an existent congregation’s online worship.  Several churches in SGA are ready to engage and support your home church.  Watch the service together and talk about what it means to you in your home church.  More churches coming soon! 

Trinity United Methodist Church, Savannah, GA

Pastor: Rev. Dr. Ben Gosden

https://trinity1848.org/


Encounter Church, Rincon GA

Pastor: Damon Hubert
https://encounterchurcheham.com


Possible format for your meeting: 

  1. Eat and chat
  2. Opening prayer
  3. Watch Service video
  4. Debrief take-aways from the sermon (can speak to kids about what they can take away from the sermon at this time too)
  5. Prayer requests
  6. Closing prayer 


If you want to apply to be a host church, click here.
 

Have other questions that aren’t answered here?  E-mail Anne Bosarge at abosarge@sgaumc.com.  

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