Planting a new church

$2 Season of Epiphany Gadson receives Order of the Palmetto Pa g e 1 2 Breaking ground in Ninety Six Pa g e 1 6 Planting a new church January 201...
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Season of Epiphany

Gadson receives Order of the Palmetto Pa g e 1 2

Breaking ground in Ninety Six Pa g e 1 6

Planting a new church

January 2011

Mother-daughter strategy today’s approach to new UMCs in S.C. By Jessica Connor

When it comes to starting a new United Methodist church in S.C., it all boils down to two things: the right place and the right person. For years, the UMC used a “parachute drop” style to start new churches: find a good site, buy the land, then pow! In drops a pastor to take the reins and steer the church into a successful future. But sadly, that’s often a recipe for failure, said the Rev. Rusty

See “New Churches,” Page 7

KICKING OFF A NEW YEAR – These karate experts – here, teaching some moves to children during the Columbia Korean United Methodist Church’s recent mission trip to Nicaragua – aren’t the only Christians with kick. Several other groups within the S.C. Conference launch strong 2011 mission and ministry programs this month. Check them out throughout this month’s edition, plus read about the Korean medical mission trip on Page 9. (Photo courtesy of the Rev. Luke “MoonTaeg” Rhyee)

S.C. gets 18 delegates to General Conference

By Jessica Connor

Belin Memorial UMWs help abused women

South Carolina will send two fewer people to General Conference in 2012, but the total is far more than it could have been. General Conference Secretary the Rev.

L. Fitzgerald Reist announced that S.C. has been allotted 18 delegates to the quadrennial legislative gathering for the United Methodist Church, set for April 24-May 4, 2012, in Tampa, Fla. Nine of the 18 are to be clergy delegates, and nine are laity.

Pa g e 8

By Jessica Connor

Conference financial leaders hope apportionment payments will come sooner than later – or missions and other programs might suffer. Deadline is Jan. 14. (Photo by Jessica Connor)

Issue Index:

4 Opinion 4-6 Commentary

See “Delegates,” Page 24

Apportionment payments slip Churches have until Jan. 14 to pay their 2010 amount

Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, Jan. 18-25

Those elected General Conference delegates will also serve as delegates to the Jurisdictional Conference, set for July 1721, 2012, at Lake Junaluska, N.C. An additional group, nine clergy and nine lay, also will be elected to serve as dele-

The bad news: apportionment payments to the S.C. Conference have slipped almost 2 percent between this time last year and now. The good news: the conference treasurer still expects payments to come in at 83 percent of the total budget. Churches have until the cutoff date of Jan. 14, 2011, to send in their 2010 apportionments. 16 District News 18 Calendar

18 19

As of Dec. 14, apportionment payments averaged 65.7 percent across the state – $11.5 million received of the $17.5 million total conference budget for 2010. But Conference Treasurer Tony Prestipino said most of the payments come in between Christmas and early January, so even though the percentage received is far less than what is expected, it is quite typical for the S.C. Conference this time of year. “Some churches pay throughout the year, but a lot of churches wait and see how they did financially for the year,

See “Apportionments,” Page 24

Classifieds Resource Center

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Obituaries IBS Lessons

Page 2, January 2011

The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

The Rev. Scott Johnson, of Union UMC, Conway, has just released a CD of contemporary Christian songs, “Love Still Wins.” He is working on his second album now, slated for release in the spring.

“Whatever you’ve got, leverage it for the kingdom,” said Johnson, here with his family. His CD is helping his church raise money to construct wells and latrines in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Using God’s gifts

UM pastor releases CD, hopes to inspire others to use talents for the Kingdom

By Jessica Connor

CONWAY – One United Methodist pastor is using his musical talents to help the kingdom – and inspire others to do the same. The Rev. Scott Johnson of Union United Methodist Church, Conway, has just released a CD of contemporary Christian songs, “Love Still Wins.” Spanning acoustic, rock, piano, contemporary Christian, roots and blues genres, the album is billed as a personal diary of honest music with an honest message. “It’s about my personal experience of being a Jesus-follower and the struggles of trying to follow Jesus and lead a congregation,” Johnson said. “Some songs are a reaction to what’s going on in my life, some are my prayer journals and some I’ve written in the midst of writing a sermon because I couldn’t get in prose what I wanted to say. So I stopped, wrote the song, and then I was able to write the sermon.” Featuring songs like “Our First Love,” “Anthem of a Weary Heart,” “Portrait of Grace,” “Our Lovely King” and “How Long,” the CD is a way for Johnson to use his God-given gifts to share the Good News with others. All the vocals are his, as are the piano and acoustic guitar, plus some bass and electric guitar. Various other musicians are also featured. Johnson wrote all the songs except “Alas and Did My Savior Bleed,” which is a remake of an old Isaac Watts hymn, two versions of which are in the UM hymnal. Johnson hopes other people will be inspired by his creative effort and do something similar with their own talents. “God holds us responsible to use the gifts He’s given us whether or not we think they’re useful,” Johnson said. “To be self-critical is good, to have

self-knowledge is a key to wisdom, but it also can hinder you from actually following through. If God puts something in your heart, you should use it. People are afraid of using it, but you only get one shot at living this life, and I’ll take failure over failing to act any day.” After all, Johnson said, God might one day ask why we didn’t use the gift He gave us. “You could say, ‘I didn’t feel comfortable.’ But God would say, ‘I didn’t give it to you to be comfortable. I gave it to you to use it,’” Johnson said. The CD is also important to Johnson for another reason – helping Union with the Congo, his church’s effort to raise money to construct wells and latrines in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in partnership with the United Methodist Committee on Relief. Half of the sales of CDs purchased directly from Johnson go to that fund.

Music a ‘universal language’ Music has always been a part of Johnson’s life and is the recurring theme of his personal walk with Jesus, he said: “It kept me grounded, got me through various things, and I just think music is at the core of my ministry. It’s how I connect with God.” That’s the beauty of music, for Johnson – it transcends language. “It’s a universal language, and that’s why music points to God and is from God, because it transcends words,” he said. His congregation is musically inclined, as well, and they try to capitalize on what Johnson calls “homegrown talent.” They have a choir every other week, and in between they have different musical offerings. “Our goal is to help our congregation be producers of worship instead of just consumers ... to pull

people from the congregation and have them be a part of the worship,” he said. “Excellence is maximizing what you have.” And that’s just what he hopes others will do – not only in their own worship services, but in using their gifts to help the kingdom financially, spiritually and physically. “Whatever you’ve got, leverage it for the kingdom,” he said. “Whether music or art, do whatever you can do to contribute outside of your typical income.” As he said, the Parable of the Talents is done on a ratio for a reason. Johnson thinks creativity might be a key way the UMC can gain members, as well. He thinks many people lose interest in the church because they feel they cannot express their creative ideas within a church setting. But as he points out, the Sistine Chapel was an expression of Christian art, and even an atheist still knows who Michelangelo is. Others should follow suit in expressing their own creativity – even recording a CD of their own if so inspired. “Go put your stuff to work and trust God with the outcomes,” he said. What’s next for Johnson? He has started cutting the set list for his second album, and right after Christmas, he will start the recording process. He expects the new album to be released in the spring. No matter what, he’ll be using his God-given creativity for the sake of the kingdom.

To purchase a copy of the “Love Still Wins” CD from Johnson, with 50 percent going to the Union with the Congo fund, the cost is $10. E-mail Johnson at [email protected] or call 843-3979100. To purchase online instead, the cost is $12.97 for the CD and $9.99 for the MP3 download. Visit www.cdbaby.com/cd/mydeardemas.

Surprise!

The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

January 2011, Page 3

S.C. United Methodists win big on Oprah

By Jessica Connor

Two United Methodist women are pinching themselves after receiving thousands of dollars in prizes – including a brand-new car – on The Oprah Winfrey Show. Active UM volunteers Martha Thompson, who attends Mount Horeb United Methodist Church in Lexington, and her daughter Beth Moore, who attends Advent UMC in Simpsonville, were among more than 200 do-gooders in the audience as the “queen of talk” honored these special invitation-only viewers with everything from an iPad, diamond earrings and a Coach purse to a 2012 Volkswagen Beetle. “I’m still on cloud nine hardly believing it is happening,” Thompson told the Advocate, laughing. “I can never say ‘I don’t The “queen of talk” honored special invitation-only viewers with everything from an iPad, diamond earrings and a Coach win anything’ anymore!” “It’s too hard to believe we really purse to a 2012 Volkswagen Beetle. (Submitted photos) got a car,” Moore said. “We’re both that her mother had been to Indeed, it was good. Thompson, still really shocked over the whole Zimbabwe, Africa, through United Moore and the more than 200 other episode.” Methodist Volunteers in Mission. audience members received gift The show, “Oprah’s Ultimate A couple of weeks later, a proafter gift after gift of Winfrey’s Favorite Things, Part 2,” aired Nov. ducer called Moore to interview favorite things. 22 and was a surprise follow-up to her, and then in early November, “It was a wonderful surprise,” the first giveaway that has become she received an e-mail saying she Thompson said. an annual tradition for the talk had been chosen to be an audience Moore said the experience humshow host. None of the audience member at the Nov. 16 B taping, bled her. members knew they would be and that she could bring a guest. “I didn’t deserve that by any receiving any of the gifts and had Moore invited her mother, and means – it was just one trip to simply been told they would be the women were thrilled at the Tanzania, and I wrote in,” she said. viewing an Oprah Show taping. opportunity. But it reminds her of the gift we “It was surreal, so exciting – like “We had no idea what it could be all receive from the Father. S.C. United Methodists Martha having children and getting married about,” said Thompson, who just “We don’t deserve such an abunThompson, left, and her daughter Beth all over again,” Thompson said. expected to watch a regular show. dant gift from God, but we just Moore received thousands of dollars in It all started in the summer, when But when the two arrived and receive it,” she said. “And that’s prizes on The Oprah Winfrey Show. Winfrey announced she would end were chatting in line with the other just what Oprah said – she said, ‘I her show this season after a 25-year audience members, they started to was giggling, hollering, “I got you! do this show because I love giving, run and invited viewers to tell her realize that nearly everyone they and I hope you’ll receive this as a I played y’all like a fiddle. That about their favorite Oprah Show talked with was a volunteer or mis- was good!” gift. It’s yours.’” ever. sioner. Yet they knew Winfrey had Moore, an avid fan, e-mailed that already done her ultimate giveaway her favorite show was one about that morning – and she never did the work Winfrey had done in start- two giveaways. ing the Oprah Winfrey Leadership They were in for a huge shock. 1836. Publication began July 24, 1837. Publisher Academy for Girls in South Africa. The S.C. United Methodist Advocate Trustees The audience entered the room The paper is published monthly by Marilyn Murphy, chairperson; the S.C. United Methodist Advocate Trustees Moore was especially touched by and saw a plain set – just Winfrey Angela Nelson, vice chairperson; at 4908 Colonial Drive, Suite 207, the Rev. Steven King, secretary; the gratefulness of the children, in a chair. And Winfrey kidded Columbia, SC 29203. Carmen Faulkner, treasurer; www.scadvocate-online.org Richard Baines; Robert Bentley; most notably the video showing the them, asking whether they were the Rev. Robin Dease; the Rev. Jerry Gadsden; The individual subscription rate is $15 annually. children running after Winfrey’s upset to learn the prior audience the Rev. Keith Hunter; Rhonda Jones; Renewals are $13. To subscribe or for Gladys Lemon; the Rev. Dean Lollis; airplane. information about discounted church plan rates, had received all those fabulous the Rev. Evelyn Middleton; please call 803-786-9486 or 888-678-6272, the Rev. Rodney Powell; and Diane Wilson In the e-mail, Moore, an intake gifts. A few women admitted to or e-mail [email protected] coordinator at the nonprofit Hope Editors emeritus Winfrey they were, frankly, a little We cannot be responsible for unsolicited J. Claude Evans, M. Eugene Mullikin, manuscripts. Please direct all inquiries regarding Reach, mentioned that she had been jealous. Maryneal Jones, Willie S. Teague, Allison Askins, commentary submissions to: Karl F. Davie Burgdorf, Emily L. Cooper to Tanzania, Africa, on a church All of a sudden, transformation! the editor, 4908 Colonial Drive, Suite 207, Columbia, SC 29203-6070. Editor: Jessica Connor mission trip. Advent UMC supports A Christmas ornament rolled out, 803-786-9486/FAX 803-735-8168 [email protected] Periodicals postage paid at Columbia, S.C. Full Dimension Ministry, which the curtains opened, snow shimAdvertising/Circulation/Assistant Editor: Postmaster: Send address changes to: Allison K. Trussell, [email protected] helps Tanzanian children through a mered from above, and a huge giftThe South Carolina United Methodist Advocate, 4908 Colonial Drive, Suite 207, Columbia, SC 29203 The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate clinic, school and other Christian themed set was before them. The (ISSN 1078-8166) continues the Southern Christian outreach. Moore also mentioned Advocate, authorized by the General Conference of January 2011 • Volume 175 • No. 1 audience went wild, and Winfrey

Page 4, January 2011

The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

VIEWPOINT

Jessica Connor, Editor

King: legacy of Christian love

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today. I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of interposition and nullification; one day right there in Alabama, little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers. I have a dream today. – From Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have A Dream” speech, delivered Aug. 28, 1963

Peace. Unity. Christian love. The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. preached all of that and more in a lifetime spent advocating racial equality and an end to discrimination. His passionate crusade for a unified, color-blind society earned him the Nobel Peace Prize and, posthumously, the Presidential Medal of Freedom and Congressional Gold Medal. More importantly, his words and actions inspired countless to take up the mantle of racial harmony and civil rights. This month, we celebrate the life of Dr. King, an extraordinary human being who shaped and influenced the lives of so many people – including this editor. King’s message runs parallel to what Jesus himself said about brotherly and sisterly love, about peace, about unity among the races: • As I have loved you, so you must love one another (John 13:34). • If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also (Luke 6:29). • Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God (Matthew 5:9). • Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand (Matthew 12:25). If Jesus were here today, what would he be saying about civil rights, about racism, about peace, about Dr. King’s dream? Sadly, much of this nation is still segregated – our schools, our churches, our neighborhoods. I still hear racist jokes on television or whispered in corners. I read about our nation’s first black president being called the Nword. It makes me sick. And it reminds me that on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, and every day, we must remain steadfast and ever-vigilant in our quest to unite all people, all races, under God. Just like Dr. King would have wanted. Just like Jesus asked us to do. May you rest in peace, Dr. King. God bless you.

Letters Policy

We welcome letters to the editor. In focus groups conducted on behalf of the Board of Trustees, Advocate readers said they wanted shorter, to-the-point letters and commentary. Succinct writing often produces clarity and better writing. Thus letters to the editor are to be no more than 300 words. Commentary will run from 600 to 950 words, as judged by the editor according to the interest and points made. All letters and commentary are subject to editing as needed to meet standards of grammar, space and interest. Inappropriate language or personal attacks will be struck. Letters should be sent to: The Advocate 4908 Colonial Drive, Suite 207 Columbia, SC 29203-6070 FAX (803) 735-8168 | [email protected]

FEBRUARY DEADLINE: JAN. 10 MARCH DEADLINE: FEB. 10

All letters will be verified, so you must include a name, daytime phone number, church membership and hometown.

Bishop’s Corner

Bishop Mary Virginia Taylor

Making all things new

The possibilities that come with a new year are always intriguing to me. I am somewhat amazed when we get the opportunity to start out fresh in a new year. I am always surprised that another year has passed. What was accomplished? What did not get finished? What would I have done differently? These are the kinds of questions that come to mind when we come to the end of another year of life and embark on a new one. The days of our lives, as the soap opera reminds us, are like sand through an hourglass. Life moves ahead, and like it or not, we must go with it. We do not have the option of standing still, even though there are times when we wish more than anything that time would back up and we could change something. We visited some friends two weeks before Christmas. On the Tuesday before Thanksgiving their 2-year-old grandson, Charlie, died unexpectedly. There was no obvious cause to explain why Charlie was gone, and I could not help but think of the prayer we said with our girls when they were Charlie’s age: “Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep, if I should die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take.” One of the hardest things we could ever have to do is to give a child back to God. I share with you this sadness because it is important for us to remember that our time on the earth is temporary, but our time with God is forever. I often remember those words, “the eternal God is our dwelling place.” How important it is to keep that reality ever before us. There is no way for us to know what the year of our Lord 2011 holds for us. There will be times on the mountain and times in the valley; life is like that. There will be opportunities to serve God as we are in ministry with the least and the last. We will have the possibility of making a positive difference in our world that is too often influenced by a popular culture that is not always wholesome and affirming. And yet God invites us to be people who have committed ourselves to the One who will reign forever and ever. God invites us to strive to change that culture. As we begin a new year, it is my prayer that we will stand on the promises of God our savior, and that as the church we will be all that God needs for us to be. The commitment of the people called Methodist in South Carolina continues to inspire me, and for that I am thankful.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day in S.C.

A sampling of what S.C. UMCs are doing to commemorate Martin Luther King Jr. Day:

Cumberland UMC in Florence is hosting a citywide celebration on Monday, Jan. 17, sponsored by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

Wesley Chapel UMC in Lake City will have its Annual King Day Service on Monday, Jan. 17, at 10 a.m. in the Family Life Center. Following the celebration, as a part of a day of caring, the Wesley Chapel clothes closet will be open to the community. The Jefferson-Pageland Ministerial Alliance plans to have a Prayer Breakfast on MLK Holiday. The Rev. Allen Nesmith (pastor of Salem UMC, Pageland) is chair of the alliance, and

the Rev. Audrey Boozer (pastor of Oro UMC, Pageland) is a member of the Alliance. The newly formed alliance comprises pastors from AME Zion, Baptist, Presbyterian and United Methodist churches. This will be its first major event. The Rev. Jack Washington, Mount Zion UMC in Kingstree, and the Rev. John Wesley Culp, Virginia Wingard Memorial UMC in Columbia, will exchange pulpits on Jan. 16 to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Manning Chapel UMC in Dillon and Parnassus UMC in Blenheim will remember all people’s civil rights on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, honoring King’s work, plus the work of General Thomas Jonathan “Stonewall” Jackson and General Robert E. Lee for the rights of their state to self govern.

Correction

In the article “I.D. Newman Church Celebrates Groundbreaking” (December edition), Sen. John Scott’s name was listed incorrectly

as Joe. The Advocate apologizes for this error and strives to set the record straight.

The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

January 2011, Page 5

Letters to the Editor The process needs to be changed

A change needs to come to the requirements for ministers seeking elder status in the United Methodist Church. Some consideration has come on the national level. The number of people seeking elder status has dropped sharply. One of the reasons is the requirements have grown over the years. I have taken three workshops over the last 20 years, and it looks like the thinking is we will get better ministers if we have more requirements. The 1950s and the 1960s gave us a large group of leaders in our conference with few requirements other than college (and seminary). The emphasis then was on the call to ministry and the desire to serve God and people. Large numbers sought the elder status. I have asked a number of ministers going through the process in the last 20 years: “Were the requirements to become a minister in full connection encouraging or discouraging?” The majority replied quickly, “Discouraging.” The process needs to be changed. The General Conference needs to act on this. Rev. Farrell Cox (retired) Pamplico

What about our state’s children?

Our Advocate came this past week. On the front page was a picture of children preparing shoeboxes for Samaritan’ Purse’s Operation Christmas Child. On Page 3 was an article about a group of women in Rock Hill and their endeavor to do something good for Wallace Family Life Center. My concern is about Operation Christmas Child. To my knowledge, not one child in South Carolina has ever received a Christmas shoebox from Operation Christmas Child. And we have so many needy and deserving children in our state. Plus, our state agencies could benefit from the $7 that is required to be included in each box. I have no idea the total number of shoeboxes that are being lovingly assembled in South Carolina to be distributed all over the world. I am asking: What about Wallace Family Life Center, Rural Mission, Bethlehem Centers, Oliver Gospel Mission, Epworth Children’s Home, Killingsworth and our Salkehatchie families, to name a few? I do know that all of our agencies are suffering because of the economy, and there are South Carolina children who will have bleak Christmases. I want to call attention to this and hope that next year the S.C.

Conference will make churches aware that there are needy children right here among their neighbors who would love to have a filled shoebox. So many members of our churches have never heard of Rural Mission, Bethlehem Center or Wallace Family Life Center. Maybe it is time our monthly Advocate promotes their needs along with other agencies in our Conference. Mary Floyd Furse, member Northeast UMC, Columbia

Thank you

A time of loss is often when one hears the well-worn, “When one door closes, another one opens.” In my case, at the loss of my brother, and the loving outpouring of support and empathy that has come from friends within this connection, have persuaded me to look at this cliché another way. Now I am thinking: “When one door closes, maybe that door wasn’t closed at all.” It has been two years since I have had contact with most of you, for that was when my position as staff writer at the Advocate ended. Yet my family and I have been remembered so lovingly with messages that have made me feel that sense of connection as strongly as if I were still there – making the gestures all the more heartfelt, all the more appreciated. I think of you all often and appreciate so much the spiritual nurturing that was attendant to my eight-year association and work with each of you. Thank you for considering me one of you, even after my official time with you is done. Rachel Haynie Columbia

On miracles

I was standing in the office this week when Mr. Burgess, the cottage coordinator for Haas Cottage here at Epworth, came in to leave a note on someone’s desk. I looked at him and lightheartedly asked, “What are you up to?” His response floored me. I was so taken aback; I actually wrote it down and taped it to my office door. Without looking up at me from his note, he responded, “Oh, you know, just making miracles happen at 2900 Millwood Avenue.” In my first nine months at Epworth, I have witnessed the transformation of children from quiet, scared “problems” to joyful, active blessings. I have been bombarded with hugs and smiling faces. I have seen church members give selflessly to this ministry. I have heard stories from our alumni that See “Letters,” Page 6

GUEST COMMENTARY

The real reason we’re losing members By the Rev. Doug Bowling (retired)

More than at any time in my life, I am proud to be United Methodist. It bothers me that I keep hearing church leaders, magazine articles and letters to the editor lamenting the decline in membership in the United Methodist Church. Some of them even offer suggestions about how to reverse the trend: train better clergy leadership, create a more efficient bureaucracy, study the Bible more, etc. These offerings aren’t wrong. They’re just shallow. The real reason we have lost approximately 3 million members over the last 50 years is clear: during these same five decades, our denomination has taken the right stand on the right issues. Refusing to do the “success” thing, United Methodism has done the “Gospel” thing. For example, there’s the race issue. During the 1950s through the 1970s, our denomination stood at the front of the line in fighting for integration of schools, civil rights and voting rights. We probably lost a million members during that struggle. It was worth it. Another issue: war. Many United Methodist agencies and churches and individuals questioned the rightness of the Vietnam War – not the rightness of the soldiers. They were patriots. What was questioned was the rightness of the war itself. More recently, many of us have raised red flags concerning the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. We’ve said that policing the world may not be God’s call to America. Thousands and thousands of members moved their membership because of this stand – a simple refusal to equate God and country. And remember our ordination of women. While it is one of the most blessed things that ever happened to our denomination, it was divisive at the time. I remember a member in

his late 50s saying to me, “I ain’t gonna belong to no church that’s got a woman preacher.” I remember thinking to myself, “Well, don’t let the sanctuary doors hit you on the backside as you leave.” I’m glad he left. Whew! Lord have mercy! Then there is the gay and lesbian issue. The United Methodist Church has consistently stated our doors, hearts and minds are open to all persons without regard to sexual orientation. And yes, it would be fine with me to have a minister who is gay or lesbian. I know the heat you incur when you take this stand. I served two churches where several members moved their membership because of my position on this. Maybe we lost half a million members on this one. And that’s okay. Over the last 50 years we have been true to the call of Jesus. We have supported equal rights for women, the right of women to make a choice regarding their bodies, some measures of gun control and fair treatment for immigrants. Our ministry has been about fighting for justice for people on the margins and at the edges. So was Jesus’. Did these issues cause us to lose members? You bet! I know this is hard. The tug of our world pushes the church to measure itself by the prevailing standards of size, power and prominence – none of which reflect the standards by which Jesus measured his life, death and resurrection. It’s true that we have gone from approximately 11 million members to 7.9 million. But from where I sit, it’s better to be faithful to Jesus and Christian principles than to be popular and sell our souls for a positive membership statistic. Will we become a remnant church? Maybe. And that’s okay, too! Bowling is a retired S.C. United Methodist pastor who lives in Greer.

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Page 6, January 2011

GUEST COMMENTARY

Happy New Year – but what year is it? By the Rev. Alvin Shifflett

Soon 2011 will be here. But are we sure? In 46 B.C., the Roman calendar was 80 days behind the sun. Julius Caesar decided to put an abrupt end to such nonsense. He called for a reputable Egyptian astronomer, and they decided to allow the year 46 B.C. to run 445 days in order to catch up (365 + 80). Consequently, 46 B.C. became known as the longest year and as the “year of confusion.” It hasn’t been the last year of confusion! In 45 B.C., the Romans adopted a modified Egyptian calendar in which five extra days at the end of the year were distributed throughout the year (much like government cheese is distributed), giving us months of uneven length. We should have seven 30-day months and five 31-day months, but the Romans considered February an unlucky month, so they stuck us with one 28-day month! Paydays come quicker in February, but so do bills. Caesar and his astronomers established every fourth year as one of 365 days – this is the “Julian Year,” after Julius Caesar, of course. The Council of Nicaea in A.D. 325 adopted the Julian calendar for the Christian church. Unfortunately, the Julian Year is on the average 11 minutes and 14 seconds too long. On the surface that doesn’t seem like much, but like sin, a little here and a little there, and soon the whole person’s down the tube. So by A.D. 1263, the Julian Year was eight full days behind the sun. Now do you see how these little things add up? If allowed to continue this would eventually put Easter in midsummer and Christmas in the spring. Your chocolate Easter bunnies would melt in the summer sun, and we’d always be only dreaming of a white Christmas. Fortunately, a fellow by the name of Roger Bacon decided to tackle the problem. (He has nothing to do with what you eat for breakfast.) Bacon sent a letter to the Pope in 1263 telling him that we had problems keeping up with the sun. The Pope (although not a United Methodist) did what most United Methodists do – he appointed a committee. You guessed it: the committee was slow. Three centuries later, in 1582, Pope Gregory XIII pulled the matter out of the hands of the committee and took action. (What does

LETTERS: Sounding off

The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

that say about human nature?) Pope Gregory caused the calendar to jump 10 days, changing Oct. 5, 1582, to Oct. 15, 1582. Some people were upset with the pope as they missed their birthdays that year; that just shows you can’t please everyone. But the pope didn’t like criticism (who does?) so he figured out a way to prevent this ever happening again – he prepared a new calendar! You guessed it: the Gregorian calendar. After all, if you’re going to do something significant, you might as well name it after yourself. But like sin, the problem remained. Every 3,400 years, the Gregorian calendar gains a full day on the sun. Did you know that? But that wasn’t the only problem with the Gregorian calendar. It was resisted by the Protestant movement in Northern Europe. In 1582, the Protestant nations would sooner be out of step with the sun in accordance with the dictates of a pagan Caesar then consent to be corrected by the Pope. So they stubbornly kept the Julian calendar. Now things were a mess. What does that say about change and human nature? People don’t like change. It was bound to happen. The Julian calendar had the year 1700 as a Leap Year, and the Gregorian calendar did not. By March 1, 1700, the whole thing was out of whack. Denmark, the Netherlands and Protestant Germany gave in and adopted the Gregorian calendar. But Great Britain and the American colonies held out until 1752. Finally, they gave in. Sept. 2, 1752, was changed to Sept. 13, 1752, in order to make up for the discrepancy. Needless to say, people were fit to be tied. Legislation had made them 11 days older! Greedy landlords loved it as they calmly charged a full month’s rent in spite of the fact that the month of September 1752 had only 19 days. George Washington, a man with wooden false teeth, showed remarkable poise in accepting the change. According to the Gregorian calendar, he was born Feb. 22, 1732, but the date recorded in the family Bible, according to the Julian calendar was February 11, 1732. Excuse me, what date is it again? Well, whatever it is, merry Christmas and happy New Year.

Adv ertis e in the Adv ocat e It works!

From Page 5

tell of the love they received and how Epworth is still their home. (By the way, did you know this year Epworth celebrates its 115th birthday?) I have been reminded of the United Methodist Church’s witness of discipleship and her passion for the least of these. So often in the world of child protection services, the children are simply remembered during the holidays. As I reflect, I must give thanks for the miracle of this church that remembers the children all year long, and because of their generosity, the staff and volunteers of Epworth Children’s Home are “making miracles happen at 2900 Millwood Avenue” all year long. As the lights, trees and decorations come down and make their way back to the attic, I give thanks that the children of Epworth will not be boxed away. Because of S.C. United Methodists, they will continue to be heard. Continue to be joyful. Continue to be remembered. Continue to be miracles. With peace and joy, Mitzie Schafer, Associate in Ministry Director of Development,

Epworth Children’s Home Columbia

Why not go green?

I appreciate the efforts of United Methodist churches who are “going green” and turning attention to realities that will not go away. Climate change is real and visible; our resources will not last forever if efforts to conserve are passive; environmental concerns are not political in origin, but have been mandated biblically long before government structures were put in place; and the world children will inherit is the world human hands and spirits nurture or not. We are stewards of creation. In additions to the programs and ministries of our great church, we have the privilege of “caring for this earth and all its resources.” I would hope that our church leaders would see this privilege as a spiritual matter where the church can take the lead rather than depending on those who make it the government’s job alone to care for this world. Why aren’t there more churches and conferences “going green?” Rev. Ken Timmerman First UMC, Myrtle Beach

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NEW CHURCHES: Right leader, healthy ‘mother’ are key The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

From Page 1

Taylor, director of congregational development for the UMC’s S.C. Conference – 80 percent of churches that started that way don’t make it. A vastly more successful strategy is the new way of doing things, and South Carolina is solidly on board. Called the “mother-daughter” approach, this style aligns a healthy, established church in a growing population hub (the “mother”) with a dynamic, Paul-like pastor “daughter” who would be a good fit as a church planter. “Most of what congregational development is currently doing in South Carolina is identifying the right places and the right people,” Taylor said. S.C. is one of the leading conferences in supporting congregational development, and with a 2010 budget of $1.1 million, it puts its money where its mouth is. In the last few years, a host of new and reworked churches have sprouted up: Ashley Ridge, Summerville; Esperanza Mission Congregation, Greenville; Rocky Swamp, Neeses; Waters Edge, Beaufort; Journey, Columbia; Grace Community, Fort Mill; Good Samaritan, Lake Wylie; Point Hope, Mount Pleasant; and West Metro Hispanic Ministry, West Columbia. So far, these churches are thriving, as are some older church starts, such as Advent, Simpsonville (23 years) and Christ, Myrtle Beach (11 years). Most new church starts these days are mother-daughters, though some (notably, Journey and Waters Edge) are successful parachute drops; S.C. still does the latter only when the right situation is in place. “Most conferences say they want to support congregational development, but don’t provide the funding. South Carolina says, ‘Yes, we want to’ and provides the funding,” Taylor said. “Annual Conference made a commitment that this is a priority.” Indeed, it costs a lot to start a church. The conference invested half a million in Journey for salaries, musicians, sound – and now, land for a church home. But it’s paying off. Ashley Ridge went from 150 to 300 members in one year. Journey grew from 30 to 475 in less than three years. The list goes on. “It’s biblical – look at Mark 4, where the planter comes out and scatters the seed,” said the Rev. Randy Madsen, of Grace Community UMC, which averages about 240 worshippers each week. “A new church doesn’t get started because the conference says it must be so; not because somebody writes a check. It’s God that’s going to start it, and God has already shown us how He’s going to do that. He has seed that’s going to be planted, so if a church is willing to let its seed grow, it’ll work.’” And it’s also very important, as new churches often reach new believers. With 195 million unchurched in the U.S. right now, the UMC is trying hard to reach these people, Taylor said. And some existing churches are no longer in

New church start Ashley Ridge likes to get “way outside the box,” said the Rev. Jenn Williams. Here, children and adults participate in a Holy Thursday worship, which included a foot washing. (Submitted photo)

places where the people are – or no longer reflect the area’s demographic.

How does it work? The mother-daughter approach is a strategic 12-step recipe, according to Taylor: Discover potential new church start pastors. Provide training. Assess/ train those identified for appointment. Identify “mission fields” ready for planting. Identify mother churches. Align planting pastors, mother churches and mission fields prior to appointments. Assign a coach. Provide intensive training prior to fixing the appointment. Define benchmarks for continued funding. Fix the appointment. Evaluate progress at least annually. Purchase property when milestone is reached. As for location, it’s not just random. The S.C. Conference subscribes to a service (iMark) that breaks down census information and reveals a population in a one-, three- and five-mile radius, broken out by age, ethnicity and income. To know where to scan, they explore population hubs, number of existing churches and more, Taylor said. After all, he said, the fastest-growing corridor in the U.S. is along I-85 from Atlanta to Raleigh – and 80 miles of that is in S.C. Given that approximately 6 percent of the state’s population is UM (240,000 of the 4 million people in the state), “that means anywhere you have people, potentially 6 percent could be United Methodist,” Taylor said. The leader is key A gifted church planter is critical to starting a new church. In S.C., congregational developers visit seminaries to know the people coming into the conference – some who have expressed an interest in planting a new church. Also, for the last four years, the conference has hosted a Discernment Academy for current pastors and seminarians to assess potential planters. The Rev. Jenn Williams, pastor of

January 2011, Page 7

new church start Ashley Ridge, which launched in January 2010, was the associate pastor at Bethany UMC in Summerville when she was invited to the Discernment Academy. “I fit the profile – I’m very extroverted, I’m an influencer, I’m a firestarter, I guess,” Williams said. “There are Pauls and there are Barnabases. … I’m more like Paul. I’m more interested in who’s not in church than who is in church.” It didn’t take her long to realize she was being called as a church planter. From there, it was a matter of timing – preparing Bethany to be a mother church, getting ordained and preparing for the launch of Ashley Ridge. In the midst of all of this, she and her husband had their first child, Jacob, born in February 2009. “Suddenly, we became a young family out looking for other young families,” Williams said. “When you are a young mom and interacting with other young moms, reaching young families ended up being great.” The prelaunch phase for Ashley Ridge was “hugely critical,” William said. And that’s where a need for the right church planter becomes obvious. Eighty percent of her time had to be spent networking. Instead of exercising solo, she joined the Y. She started working in coffee shops on her laptop, and she joined the young professionals group at the chamber of commerce. At first, she was a little worried about coming across as a used-car salesperson or a political campaigner. “As much as I’m an extrovert, I didn’t want to be that scary person giving out a card,” she said, laughing. But to her delight, it was entirely organic, evolving out of the new relationships she made and her naturally outgoing personality. “You are in the places you would be anyway, and you’re seeing someone in a cardio class for a couple of weeks,” Williams said. “You are talking. Eventually it comes up. Someone will say, ‘What do you do?’ And I say, ‘I’m a pastor, I’m planting our church and you should come join us sometime.’ It just comes out of who you are.” The Rev. Bob Howell, pastor of Ashley’s Ridge’s mother church, Bethany, said he and his team saw in Williams the skill sets needed to be a church planter. “It’s all about leadership,” Howell said, calling Williams a “natural.” “I didn’t want to have to go to people and beg them to go to the new church. I wanted [Williams] to develop a group of people who would willingly go with her to the new church.” The Rev. George Ashford, of Journey, agreed. “I think the right leadership is paramount,” Ashford said. “Initially in a new church start, people will be coming to witness and to see the leader, the pastor, and it takes a leader willing to be transparent and open about his or her life and calling, and perhaps even to dedicate 65-

75-hour workweeks to really nurture the birth of a church.”

A good mother Just as crucial to finding the right leader is finding a good mother church that wants to give birth to a new church. Madsen said it’s not about cloning the mother church – that would be modeling, not parenting, which runs opposite to Natural Church Development. The mother-daughter model is like creating a DNA cocktail. But, he cautioned, “The mama has to let the daughter be her own self, and be willing to do that.” Howell agreed, saying the mother church needs to trust the daughter to take the lead in developing natural pastoral relationships and not be “envious or jealous of taking people away.” “Sixty-five to 75 people left from Bethany [when Ashley Ridge started], but I’m excited about that because they’re now having 150-200 people on their own. And that means there are 175 people who are United Methodists who weren’t United Methodists a year ago. That’s pretty remarkable.” His church has talked a lot about being a Great Commissioned Church, from Matthew 28. To Howell, that means the notion of making disciples, generally, trumps making disciples for Bethany. By serving as a mother church, Bethany becomes an instrument to empower that commission. “It’s an effective way to increase the church’s reach and make disciples,” he said. “I tell my people you will never understand the Christian faith as long as you think it’s about you.” Ashford said a mother church has to be extremely healthy for the motherdaughter model to work. He likened it to a parent’s natural instinct to make miniature versions of themselves in their own children. He said mother churches should take care to avoid duplication and over-parenting. Keeping it going The mother-daughter strategy seems to be working in this state. Williams said Ashley Ridge draws about 300 people each Sunday – 70 percent from the community and 30 percent from the mother church. That percentage was her benchmark. “We’re really on target,” Williams said. “I have every expectation now we are going to continue to grow. We’re seeing lots of new families every week. We keep pushing forward to the next piece and the next piece.” From here, the conference continues to identify more mother churches and to identify and equip potential planters. And as long as funding remains strong, Taylor said, they’ll keep starting new churches in an effort to make more disciples. “As Jesus said, ‘I want you to go into the world and make disciples,’ and, ‘When you do it for them, you do it for me,’” Taylor said.

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The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

Ministries & Missions Esperanza celebrates Advent Iglesia Esperanza, the new Hispanic church-start in the Greenville District, began its first Advent season in great fashion on Nov. 28. “It was inspiring to experience over 40 parishioners begin this wonderful season in their new church; worshipping, praising, singing, praying and preaching in their own beautiful Spanish language,” said the Rev. Enrique Gordon. Church members had spent all day Saturday cleaning and decorating the church, and the sanctuary was festive with a tree and holiday greenery. Shirley Gordon, the pastor’s wife, said she didn’t have to do a thing on Saturday as the church members were so eager to help. Gordon gave a sermon about the coming of the Christ child and the coming again of that child as Christ the King. Members and visitors were challenged to open their hearts to Christ during this season. A special treat was the singing of Las Voces de Alabanza (The Voices of Praise). This singing group of six men from the congregation led the church in Spanish praise songs. Gordon said these men have gathered together on

Church members spent all Saturday cleaning and decorating the church.

their own, feeling a calling to lead the church in singing praises to God; they have been singing together for two months. Following the worship service, everyone was invited to a meal prepared by some of the women of the congregation, something that occurs after service on every Sunday. Members ate together, shared their concerns and worked on choosing other Spanish praise songs to sing at the next service. “The true Spirit of the Advent season was truly on display at Iglesia Esperanza,” Gordon said. “Dios te bendiga!” To find out more about this new church start in the Greenville District, call Gordon at 864-561-7337.

HELPING ABUSED WOMEN – The United Methodist Women of Belin Memorial UMC, Murrells Inlet, recently completed a project to aid CASA (Citizens Against Spouse Abuse). All circles combined efforts to collect Christmas gifts for women staying in Horry and Georgetown counties’ CASA protective shelter homes during the holidays. Residents receive a canvas tote bag filled with health and beauty products, nightgown, socks, journals, towel set, shower caddy, crocheted angel and sweets. Also, Mrs. Buddy Garlick, 95-year-old Belin member and mother of UMW co-chair Dolores Claus, worked a year to crochet a full-sized afghan for every lady. Here, Garlick (left) and Joanne Patterson, director of Horry Georgetown CASA, display some of the gifts.

UMM retreat set for Feb. 11-13 Save the date: the 2011 S.C. United Methodist Men Spiritual Retreat will be Feb. 11-13. With the theme “A Man’s Heart,” the retreat will be held at The COOKOUT FOR A CAUSE – The Alston Wilkes Society in Kershaw County held a cookout Nov. 30 to raise awareness about the organization’s work in the county to help those who are most at-risk to rebuild their lives through rehabilitation and prevention services. AWS was founded to provide services to adults who were being released from federal correctional facilities, and it has grown to serve homeless veterans, at-risk families and disadvantaged and troubled youth, as well. Here, AWS Kershaw County Community Relations Council Members Lewis Brown and Carlene Glen pause for a smile. (Photo by Erin Roberts)

Radisson Hotel and Conference Center in Columbia. Registration forms and other information are available online at www.ummsc.org.

Date change announced for Bethlehem gala

Change those calendars – the date for the Gala/Reunion Celebration for the Columbia Bethlehem Community Center has been moved to Saturday, April 16, from 6 to 9 p.m. For more information and further details, watch local church bulletins, Facebook and the center’s link to the conference website (www.umcsc.org) for details.

UMVIM identifies approved misison teams for 2011

United Methodist Volunteers in Mission has released approved teams so far for 2011. Comprised of all volunteers – some clergy, mostly laity – UMVIM teams have served people all over the globe and currently have teams working with UM Committee on Relief in Haiti. UMVIM is active with Missionary Supply Network, which is a missionary opportunity for S.C. in S.C., run by a member of Buncombe Street UMC, Greenville. UMVIM also has a very active Early Response Teams unit that has helped for the last three Easters with tornado damage in different areas of S.C. Some UMVIM members have also helped with the

building of an orphanage in Haiti – a vision of Columbia builder Wade McGuinn. UMVIMers also have put together health kits, midwifery kits, flood buckets, tuberculosis kits and newborn baby kits that are delivered all over the world and in S.C. “There is lots for folks to do,” said UMVIM’s Lee McMillan. “We in UMVIM have seen and felt the joy of serving others and being God’s hands and feet.” The teams to date are as follows: Nick Elliott, Haiti, Jan. 8-18 (closed) Kathy Jo Long, Nicaragua, Jan. 29-Feb. 9 (closed) Wes Connor, Trinidad, date not set Jim Smith, Haiti, Jan. 31-Feb. 9

(one opening) Bob/Joan Suda, Cienaquinta, Panama, Jan. 17-Feb 17 Ken Hudson, Haiti, Jan. 28-Feb. 5 (closed) Bethany/Summerville, Haiti, Feb. 9-16 (medical) Hal Crosswell, Haiti, February (medical) Ray Hathaway, Haiti, April Arlene Andrews, Nicaragua, May

(women only) Neil VanderLindens, Cuba, AprilMay (opening) Hibben UMC, Haiti, date not set Don and Lee McMillan, Brazil, June 14-24 (opening) Kathy Hart, El Salvador, August Anyone interested in being a part of a team should call McMillan at 803-786-9486, ext. 322.

Leave A Legacy To Change Lives The South Carolina United Methodist Foundation P. O. Box 5087, Columbia, SC 29250-5087 [email protected]

The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

January 2011, Page 9

Ministries & Missions

Reflections on the Korean Mission Trip to Nicaragua By Sally Ryu, team member

Editor’s note: Ryu is waiting for the result of her interview for medical school. From her first mission trip to Nicaragua, she recognized that God led her to serve people as a medical doctor. This was her second trip. Saturday, Oct. 16 – Drove down to Columbia Preparing for this mission trip, I realized what my greatest weakness was: I need to have more love for people and less expectations, to be able to form better relationships, connected by a more Christian love, with the people God has given me to be a part of my life. Monday morning, Oct. 18 – Layover in Atlanta Airport We first attended the early morning service at 4:30, then left for the airport. I felt the church’s unity and each members’ love as we all prayed together, received bags filled with yakshik (breakfast) and kimbap (lunch) and helped the Jipsaneems load the luggage into the car. We said our goodbyes, and headed for the airport around 5 a.m. Within the first hour of our trip, Satan wedged deliberately into our seemingly perfect preparations, with the car running out of gas and lost supplies. But we didn’t let it detain us from what God has planned for us in Nicaragua. The early morning prayers along with the prayers of our support groups must have been a big help. If anything, we realized that even in the midst of all the attacks, our Father is always watching over us. Monday evening, Oct. 18 – Finally arrived in Nicaragua! Seeing people on the streets of Nicaragua felt different the second time around. I felt a hint of familiarity even though everyone was a stranger, and listening to Missionary Jun speak of his projects in the mission field, I started to meditate on why God had sent me to Nicaragua. “Lord, what can I do for you and for the people of Nicaragua? How can I be used for your glory?” One issue I struggled with before coming to Nicaragua was deciphering the differences between mission work and charity work. Both processes and results seem similar in feeding the poor, healing the sick and helping the weak, so what is the role of God in helping our neighbors? I prayed God would allow me to see the reason why He is so desperately needed. Tuesday, Oct. 19 – After the first day; feeling tired Today was a little weird. For being so enthusiastic yesterday about arriving in Nicaragua, I felt pretty numb today in the mission field. We went to a village

The mission trip helped the Nicaraguan people with basic medical needs. Ryu prayed, “Lord, how can I be used for your glory?”

As Ryu washed the hair of Nicaragua’s homeless, she felt a love for these people that she didn’t know she had.

where Missionary Jun’s team dug four wells to allow the residents to have running water. Two of those four wells were broken. I was to help Doctor Luke with the Medical Ministry, packaging prescribed doses of drugs for the patients in the pharmacy. All morning I focused on efficiency and speed. I was sweating, irritated, somewhat sick, but at the same time trying to appear joyful. It was hard. After lunch, I started to interact with our patients more and attempted to see them through God’s eyes. It was still hard to show the same compassion Jesus showed the sick, but I noticed something interesting. All the patients wanted to know what drugs they were taking, why and how. With my broken Spanish, I began to explain to them. The afternoon patients seemed happier and more appreciative than the patients from this morning, when we just handed out the pills without explaining anything. The rest of the afternoon, I explained to 80 patients how to take each drug, and what they were for. I noticed a feeling of comfort in their eyes and thanked God for the insight he had given me, which made the rest of the day more fun and interactive. Wednesday, Oct. 20 – After the

second day; feeling jubilated! Today was so wonderful! For the first time in my life, I wasn’t worrying about what people think, or planning what to say, or thinking about how to act. I felt freedom in not having to worry and was overwhelmed with joy, happiness, ease, love and laughter. I thought, “This must be what heaven is like. To be surrounded by never ending joy and being truly comfortable with the people around you.” We were expecting conditions like yesterday, but the amount of love we received today was completely different. Before coming to Nicaragua, I was struggling with many things, especially my faith. I wanted to do only the charity part of mission, and wasn’t sure about God’s role in giving medical care to the sick people of Nicaragua. However, today I was able to experience the unmistakable force of God’s love. Heaven is all around us, wherever we go, whomever we meet. I realized that the only way to live a life of purpose, joy, passion and reward is to seek the kingdom and righteousness of God. Thursday, Oct. 21 – After the third day; feeling very sad Today we went a village right along the Lake of Managua. The lake is

majestically breathtaking, until you go near it. We were told by Missionary Jun that the lake is the city’s “dumpster,” and Nicaraguan lake-front houses were where the poorest live. To make matters worse, it had been raining almost nonstop for the last four months, causing the lake to overflow and flood into these homes. More than 40 households lost their homes in the area we were visiting and were staying at a shelter. I couldn’t imagine my life without my “things.” After our day of medical, feeding and children ministry was over, we walked around the neighborhood to invite people to the church for a revival service. I had always thought that the less developed countries are, the more time they must spend on leisurely indulging in relationships with others. But this was not the case in this Nicaraguan city. Every household had a TV in their home, and almost everyone was in their own dark houses watching TV, rather than gathering to talk, play games, laugh or relax together.

Friday, Oct. 22 – After last day; feeling surprised One of Missionary Jun’s projects in Nicaragua is the Homeless Ministry. He has opened a homeless shelter for those with no home, so that they can participate in worship, shower, wash their clothes and eat a free lunch. He also mentions that out of all his various ministries, this one is the most challenging and least rewarding because he doesn’t see appreciation or a behavioral change in these people no matter how much he has tried to help them. I felt like Missionary Jun’s approach to these homeless people was a representation of God’s agape love for us. No matter how horrible we are, even if we never get better, even though we don’t appreciate God, he continues to love us. When Missionary Jun explained to us what we would be doing at the homeless shelter, the options were cooking chicken, cutting hair or washing hair. As I began to wash their hair, I felt love for these people that I didn’t know I had. I felt a sense of peace touching their hair as I felt the love of the Holy Spirit fill my heart. Saturday, Oct. 23 – Going home I still do not know why there is suffering and pain in this world and why God allows sad things to happen to people. But I know that my faith has taken a big leap towards realizing God’s love, which is so great. Lord, help me to remember this feeling forever as I live and share with my neighbors the image heaven you have shown me. What is the difference between mission work and charity work? Mission work relies on God’s power and Jesus’ example in truly loving and respecting the people we serve.

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The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

Education & Youth

Lynde is National Collegiate Honors Student of the Year

COLUMBIA – Columbia College senior Diana Lynde, of Columbia, has been chosen as The National Collegiate Honors Council Student of the Year. The National Collegiate Honors Council award comes with a cash prize and special medallion, which were conferred at the 2010 annual national convention held in Kansas City, Missouri. Established in 1966, NCHC is the leading honors organization in higher education. This is the second year in a row that a Columbia College honors student has received this prestigious award. “I’m thrilled that the NCHC has recognized Diana’s amazing academic talents, her devotion to service, her commitment to honors education and her extraordinary generosity of spirit,” said Dr. John Zubizarreta, director of the Columbia College Honors Program. ”She represents the best qualities of our honors program, as well as the values and high stan-

Confirmation speaker Rev. Troy Benton and a confirmand discuss the stole Brown places around his shoulders. The stole, adorned with scriptures important to the confirmand, is a physical reminder of his commitments.

Confirmation weekend renews Lynde

dards of the NCHC. She is an inspiring gem.” Lynde, a particularly distinguished Honors Program student, is double-majoring in communication and public affairs. Recently, she was chosen to attend DePauw University’s The Janet Prindle Institute for Ethics to present her submission “The Curious Case of the Conversational Absolutist.”

Every year, youth make heartfelt commitments to their churches, pledging to be faithful in their witness, prayers, presence, gifts and service. At Lake Junaluska Confirmation Weekend Retreats, youth are encouraged to explore the deeper meanings of that commitment with other youth, establishing lasting bonds through their shared commitment to Christ. During their time at Lake Junaluska, youth discover the rich heritage within United Methodism and the Southeastern Jurisdiction as they visit the World Methodist Museum and the SEJ

Heritage Center. These interactive tours allow participants to see, hear and touch their history and the history of their church. Confirmation weekends are more than just learning experiences – they are transforming worship experiences. With new bands and new speakers each weekend, there are ample opportunities for youth to experience a shared commitment to Christ with other youth. Confirmation weekends at Lake Junaluska begin March 18-20. For more information, visit www.lakejunaluska. com/confirmation-1.

Students experience seminar on human trafficking over fall break

By the Rev. Narcie Jeter

The Wesley Foundation at Winthrop University spent fall break in New York City studying the issue of human trafficking. Their study was at a seminar crafted by the United Methodist Seminar Program through the Women’s Division and the General Board of Global Ministries. Winthrop Wesley has studied topics like urban race and poverty, immigration, interreligious dialogue and homelessness, but never has there been a heavier or more challenging topic of study. Speakers from a variety of organizations – which help combat human trafficking from legal, consumer, rehabilitation, domestic and international aspects – did workshops, presentations and case studies throughout the weekend. Students learned a lot. “This reality is scary,” said Amy Fabel, a junior from Charleston. “This is not some problem that is an issue in one place, far away. This is a global epidemic. This could have been any one of us had one thing gone differently. A few million people globally is way too many when one is one too many. I worry that children who get involved don’t know what to do; women don’t know what to do. Sex is such a taboo subject, not to be openly discussed, so how are people supposed to get

Author James Levine signs books; his “The Blue Notebook,” told in the voice of a teenage prostitute, was one of the most powerful parts of the seminar.

out and get help?” That this atrocity is not something that affects just far away places but people right here in South Carolina was eye-opening for participants. Speakers discussed case studies and examples from this state. Human trafficking laws in South Carolina were passed in 2006, but the first case to be tried was in April 2010 (learn more at www.wistv.com/global/story.asp?s=12066724). “After hearing all of this, I can’t help but think, ‘Do I know someone that is a victim of human trafficking?’ It’s heartbreaking to think it can be happening in my own neighborhood,” said Leslie Bledsoe, a nursing student at York Technical College. One of the most powerful parts of the seminar were the words from some of the victims of trafficking

A group enjoys a smile in Grand Central. The Wesley Foundation at Winthrop University spent fall break in New York City studying the issue of human trafficking.

themselves, both in the documentary “Very Young Girls” and in the voice of a teenage prostitute as written by author James A. Levine. “Very Young Girls” is taken from interviews of girls here in the United States and the footage and the stories are very graphic and disturbing. The students were honored to welcome author Levine. Levine wrote the moving and gripping story of a sex slave in the book “The Blue Notebook.” Each student was given a book before the trip, and they were able to engage the author in questions about the book and for further insight. All of the U.S. proceeds from this book are donated to the International Centre for Missing & Exploited Children and the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (www.icmec.org). “The best part of the trip for me

was meeting the author James Levine,” Erica Oliveira, Winthrop Wesley alum from Rock Hill, said. “His experiences are fascinating to hear about and how he crafted this whole book in the voice of a teenaged girl is amazing to behold. ‘The Blue Notebook’ was an excellent place to begin this conversation about this deep topic.” Students are planning several educational awareness and advocacy programs in the spring to highlight this issue, and they encourage people to get the word out about ways we as people of faith can help. The United Methodist Women have several resources on the topic and more and more people are learning about this very present but hidden problem. Jeter is campus minister for Winthrop Wesley.

The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

January 2011, Page 11

Education & Youth

Annual CROP walk raises money for the hungry

By the Rev. Narcie Jeter

YORK AND ROCK HILL – In these trying economic times, many remain ever faithful in answering the cry of the hungry and the poor among us. On Oct. 17 and 24, the 33rd annual York County CROP Hunger Walk was held in York and Rock Hill. The York County Walk, which is the oldest in the state, was founded by the late Rev. Risher Brabham. The walk has raised more than $600,000 in its 33 years, with more than $150,000 of that going to local agencies and is still coordinated by the Winthrop Wesley Foundation. For the second year, Winthrop University has made CROP Walk one of its freshman class community service projects. Eighteen freshman classes walked in this year’s walk and another 17 classes participated in CanStruction on Oct. 23 to collect canned goods and build a work of art on the concourse of the Winthrop Coliseum. During this “Make a Difference Weekend,” 12,998 pounds of food were collected through CanStruction, and 1,011 walkers collected 1,961 cans and $29,009.35 for the poor both in local community and around the world.

Eighteen freshman classes at Winthrop University walked in this year’s walk and another 17 classes participated in CanStruction on Oct. 23 to collect canned goods and build a work of art on the concourse of the Winthrop Coliseum.

“For our new students, participating in CROP is a great introduction to our community and how we can work together to advocate for those in need and solve local problems,” said Ellin McDonough, Center for Career and Civic Engagement at Winthrop. CROP Hunger Walks are a mission of Church World Service. Twenty-five percent of funds raised go to local

hunger agencies and 75 percent go around the world to combat hunger. The T-shirts for this year’s walk were purchased from Maggie’s Organics, which sells clothing made in cooperatives in Nicaragua and Costa Rica. Students from Winthrop Wesley have traveled to work with the cooperatives that made the shirts. “I am excited that our CROP Walk

is able to support hungry people here and all over the world and that this year’s T-shirts are able to provide food and a better life to the women we have worked alongside in the Genesis Cooperative,” said Adrienne Chlumsky, junior from Baltimore, Md. Several United Methodist Churches in the Rock Hill District participated with 194 walkers, 211 cans and $6,233.80 raised for the hungry. Their totals: Bethel UMC in Rock Hill – four walkers, 13 cans and $100 raised, Mount Holly UMC in Rock Hill – seven walkers and $217 raised, Mount Olive UMC in Rock Hill – 17 walkers $145 raised, New Hope UMC in Rock Hill – 21 walkers, 34 cans, and $84 raised, Philadelphia UMC - nine walkers, 15 cans and $618 raised, St. John’s UMC in Fort Mill – seven walkers and $155 raised, St. John’s UMC in Rock Hill – 45 walkers and $1,542 raised, Trinity UMC in York – 33 walkers, 45 cans and $255 raised, Wesley UMC in York – eight walkers, 20 cans and $165 raised, Winthrop Wesley Foundation – 28 walkers, 84 cans and $2,666.80 raised, and Woodland UMC in Rock Hill – 15 walkers and $285 raised. Jeter is campus minister for

Southern Wesleyan University offering classes at SMC

SPARTANBURG – Southern Wesleyan University now offers classes for Spartanburg area students at a new location, thanks to a cooperative effort with Spartanburg Methodist College. Dr. David Spittal, president of

Southern Wesleyan University, said the cooperative effort with Spartanburg Methodist College means greater opportunities for students to achieve educational goals. “The relationship between the institutions has been strong and posi-

tive through the years and this new opportunity to offer undergraduate and graduate degree programs on the SMC campus will benefit students. It represents an exciting new partnership for both institutions,” Spittal said.

Classes have already begun for students enrolled in the master of education program. SMC hopes that one day the offerings will expand into various business and human services degrees.

Orangeburg Wesley celebrates with ‘The Perfect Holiday’

ORANGEBURG – A week before final exams for the semester, the students at the Orangeburg Wesley Foundation geared up by throwing a party. Planned and led by the students themselves, this event, held Dec. 3 at the OWF, was a celebration to kick off the holiday and “exhale” before buckling down to study for final exams. With a theme derived from a popular Christmas movie, this was an evening of fun-filled games, activities, With a theme derived from a popular Christmas movie, the OWF party featured fun-filled games, activities, food and fellowship, topped off with gift-giving and a food and fellowship, topped off with showing of the movie “The Perfect Holiday.” gift-giving and a showing of the movie “The Perfect Holiday.” “I really enjoyed myself at our first “We had so much fun,” said Tiera “Our goal tonight was simply to movie night,” said Bernita Cooper, a Majette, a Claflin freshman from give students an opportunity to relax sophomore at Claflin University from Charleston. “It was nice to get togethin a festive, wholesome setting, bring- Hemingway. “Having the event gave er with our classmates, and I even met ing in the spirit of the season,” said students the opportunity to get in the some new friends tonight.” the Rev. Genova McFadden, OWF holiday season, eat delicious food and “I enjoyed the party a lot,” said campus minister. Jabari J. Alston, a freshman at Claflin fellowship with other students, all The holiday gathering hit the right while being in a safe, warm environUniversity from Columbia. “I got a note with the students who came to chance to have a good time with ment.” celebrate. friends while meeting new ones.” A good time was had by all.

Tiera Majette, a Claflin freshman from Charleston, said the party was a good chance to make new friends.

According to McFadden, it’s all about sharing the love and peace of the season, and letting students know that the love of God is always available to them. McFadden expressed her faith and hope for the future. “This event is just one of many more to come at the Orangeburg Wesley Foundation,” she said.

Mother Teresa of the Sea Islands

Page 12, January 2011

The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

Rural Mission director gets Order of the Palmetto for lifetime of service

By Jessica Connor

JOHNS ISLAND – The woman known as the Mother Teresa of the Sea Islands has received the state’s highest honor for her longtime service to the rural poor. Rural Mission Executive Director Linda Dingle Gadson was presented with the prestigious Order of the Palmetto in November for 38 years spent improving the living conditions of migrant workers and the impoverished island people. Given annually by the state and the governor, the award goes to a select few who have exhibited exceptional humanitarian service. Sen. Chip Campsen, who nominated Gadson for the award, called her “an unsung hero and Samaritan who has touched many lives through the incredible work of the Rural Mission, Inc.” The Rev. McKinley Washington, one of Rural Mission’s founders, said her contributions have been immeasurable. “Linda Gadson’s humanitarian giving has been for a lifetime,” Washington wrote in a letter of recommendation to Gov. Mark Sanford. Sanford especially noted Gadson’s service to missions and faith, indicating how her leadership has brought thousands of volunteers to the islands to help others in dire need and hardship. But on rural Johns Island, Gadson isn’t sitting on her laurels. The award festivities over, she’s back to work with a vengeance, determined to do all she can to help the island people, many of whom live in substandard homes with no running water or electricity. Gadson has been at the helm of Rural Mission for most of the nonprofit’s 41 years of existence. A United Methodist Advance Special Ministry, Rural Mission started in 1969 to improve the lives of migrant families at a time when the Sea Islands were chiefly agricultural. It has evolved as the island evolved, and today, the organization primarily helps repair the homes of very low-income people. It also has a migrant childcare center. “Rural Mission gets in your blood – it’s authentic love,” Gadson said, citing the deep needs of the people the organization helps. “You can’t help yourself.” Indeed, their needs do run deep. The organization said requests for assistance have more than doubled since mid2008. More than a quarter of the island population lives below the poverty level. One in every five rural lowincome homes is severely substandard. Jean Doscher, S.C. United Methodist Women representative to Rural Mission, called Johns Island one of the poorest places in the state. “There are people living in deplorable conditions,” said Doscher, who is thrilled that Gadson is finally

The Order of the Palmetto was presented to Linda Dingle Gadson by former state senator the Rev. McKinley Washington. From left are Washington, granddaughter Quati Woodberry Gadson, Gadson and, in front, granddaughter Qynn Woodberry Gadson. (Submitted photo)

Sadie R. Gethers’ house of more than 40 years (left) is nearly falling down around her – termites, crumbling structure, leaks when it rains, no insulation, drafts. Rural Mission is helping to build a new house for the family (right). “If it weren’t for Rural Mission, I don’t know what would have happened to us,” Gethers said.

being recognized for all she has done. “Linda has almost given her life for Rural Mission – worked tirelessly, sometimes going without paychecks. I can’t think of anybody in the state who would be more deserving.” Deep roots The youngest of seven children, Gadson found her passion for service at Big Mama’s knee. Big Mama, Gadson’s maternal grandmother, was the matriarch of the family and raised Gadson and her siblings on the island while their mother found the only work she could: at a hotel on the mainland. “Big Mama had a third-grade education but the wisdom of Job,” Gadson chuckles, recounting how she and her brothers and sisters grew up washing clothes and wiping snotty noses because Big Mama’s house also doubled as the island’s free daycare. Farm workers would drop their children early in the morning, where they would play under the sycamore tree until their parents picked them up at the end of the day. “I learned early on to take care of people,” Gadson said. Big Mama instilled heavy values: help each other. Be your brother’s keeper. Believe in the Bible, every word. As the last of seven, the lessons hit

Johns Island is a dichotomy of the haves and have-nots. More than a quarter of the rural island population live below the poverty level, while others live in luxury. Rural Mission, led by Linda Dingle Gadson, primarily helps repair the homes of the very low-income people. It relies on donations and volunteer labor to do so. (Photos by Jessica Connor)

Gadson especially hard. Years later, as Big Mama got older and sicker, roles reversed and Gadson became her grandmother’s caregiver: “That taught me even more.” Integration also profoundly shaped her. Gadson was one of a handful of black students to integrate St. Paul’s High School. It wasn’t easy – as the only non-white in her political science class, and the kids would put bubble gum on her chair and do other mean things. But she learned to navigate interracial lines early on, something that would serve her well as she transitioned to a life of charitable service. After attending S.C. State College and graduating from the College of Charleston (the first African-American female), she stumbled into destiny. The Rev. Willis T. Goodwin, one of Rural Mission’s founders, asked her to help him organize the organization’s work camp. It was supposed to be temporary – Gadson planned to go to law school. But Rural Mission caught her heart and wouldn’t let go. Thirty-eight years later, she has led the organization from nascency to its status today as a nationally renowned ministry, drawing volunteers from all over the U.S. to help build and repair homes for the rural poor. “God had another plan for me,” she

said. Now, she serves as a bridge between the haves and have-nots. She works with millionaires and migrants, with well-off retirees and the working poor, bringing people together to help the impoverished get a new lease on life one plank and one nail at a time. “One thing I’ve learned over the years: we are all the same,” said Gadson, a lifelong member of Wesley UMC in Hollywood. “No matter how poor or rich, there are needs everywhere. We are God’s children.” Out of the darkness Gadson has seen some dark times in her life. Over the years, she has worked with drug addicts and people with emotional problems. Her family, too, has struggled – with depression, drug and alcohol addiction and obesity. Gadson herself, from health issues and exhaustion, nearly died in 2006, requiring four heart bypasses and flatlining twice. Rural Mission, too, has seen some hard times. There were years when she thought it was going to close, and she didn’t take a paycheck. Even now, it struggles. They had to let three staffers go in the spring, and there is a $200,000

See “Gadson,” Page 13

The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

January 2011, Page 13

Musical ambassadors

70-strong Palmetto Mastersingers include UM pastors, laity in ranks

By Jessica Connor

COLUMBIA – It’s all about the singing – and the fun. For almost 30 years, the Palmetto Mastersingers have come together to lift their voices in song as the state’s musical ambassadors. Embracing quality male singing from an all-volunteer chorus, the Mastersingers have performed all over the state, the Southeast and the world, most notably Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, The White House, Carnegie Hall and St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican. Members include men aged 22 to 82 mostly from the greater Columbia area, and they perform a little bit of everything: beach music to religious, Bach to The Beatles, even a Christmas rap. While the 70-man chorus isn’t faith-based, most of its members are Christian – and nearly a quarter of them are United Methodist. Three UM pastors (two retired) are among the ranks, plus more than a dozen UM laity. “Methodist people do like to sing,” said the Rev. Bob Borom, laughing. “It’s entirely coincidence [that we have so many UM members], but there are a lot of good Methodist choirs out there with good male singers.” The Mastersingers’ executive director is also a retired United Methodist pastor: the Rev. Thom Jones. Jones said it feels good to know so many of his denomination are involved. “I’ve always been interested in good music in the United Methodist Church, and it’s nice to know the experiences the Mastersingers have keeps their voices better longer,” Jones said. Jones has been a Mastersinger for the last 22 years and said his attraction is purely the singing. He loves the idea that the Mastersingers bring first-rate music to people all over the state and beyond. They do two seasonal concerts at the Koger Center for the Arts in Columbia, plus a host of run-out concerts. Every two years, they do an international tour. The concerts provide a little something for everyone. The first half is typically traditional – the men wear tuxedos and perform classical Christmas or religious songs. The second half, as Jones said, “is a little crazier.” They shed the tuxedos and get colorful. For instance, the Christmas concert this year included a Nigerian song, “Betelehemu,” in the native language,

While the 70-man chorus isn’t faith-based, most of its members are Christian – and nearly a quarter of them are United Methodist. (Submitted photo)

plus another Christmas rap. A nonprofit organization, the Mastersingers pay just two people: the music director (currently Dr. Walter Cuttino, an operatic tenor and vocal professor who studied extensively with Dr. Arpad Darazs, founder of the Mastersingers) and the accompanist, Allison Hilbish, who is the group’s sole female participant. Some of the Mastersingers are classically trained; the majority are choir singers. Most read music, but some do not (though they have a good ear), Jones said. They audition for new members twice a year, and they pride themselves on quality. “It’s an opportunity for men who love to sing,” Jones said. Borom has been in the group about 10 years and said he especially enjoys the group-singing aspect of his involvement, which he considers to be somewhat of a music ministry. “There is the fellowship angle, the music angle, we have a very good director who teaches us a lot of stuff, and then to be able to perform, which I enjoy doing,” Borom said. “It’s good wholesome entertainment on

an upscale level, not just the pop stuff that’s out there today. And it is fun; that’s due in large part to the current director who makes it fun. It’s not stiff.” The Rev. David Anderson, who is the pension and health benefits officer for the S.C. Conference of the UMC, said he feels his work with the Mastersingers is also a music ministry. He especially appreciates the brotherhood of the group, which he calls “a great bunch of guys.” Significant for Anderson is that the Mastersingers have a pursuit of excellence that remains fun. Rehearsals last for at least two hours, and they work hard. But it’s worth it. “It’s not singing chum; it’s singing quality,” Anderson said. And at the end of the day, that’s what the Palmetto Mastersingers hope people will leave with: appreciation for top-notch male choral singing that brings to life the spirit of the song. After all, Jones said, “Beautiful music can be written, but it still takes the human voice and human impact to bring it to life and get it off that page.”

GADSON: Sympathy, empathy for those Rural Mission helps From Page 12

note on the property that has to be paid in June. While she and the board of directors can renegotiate the loan, it still needs to be paid. But over and over again, God has brought them out of the clutches of despair. When the Advocate visited Rural Mission in December, a surprise donation had staff blinking back tears and keeping their hopes alive. “We believe the same God who has kept us has decided He will not close

the doors,” she said. The lessons she has learned, personally and professionally, allow her to have both sympathy and empathy for the people Rural Mission helps. “My theme in life has been from the outhouse to the White House,” she said, laughing. “That says it all.”

A supreme reason Gadson feels God spared her life for a reason: “He brought me back because it was-

n’t over; I hadn’t reached where He needed me to be,” she said. “I made a vow that, whatever you want me to do, Lord, that’s where I am.” Every morning, she anoints the Rural Mission gate with oil and prayer, blessing the work the organization will do that today and beyond. Staff, board and other supporters are just thankful she is there to lead the nonprofit through its next phase and into a brighter future. “Ms. G’s got a compassion for peo-

ple that just rubs off on you,” said Nancy Butler, who worked for Rural Mission 19 years before she was laid off in March. “She’s as good as gold,” said Dana Rogers, the group’s Migrant Head Start director. “We can’t say thank you to her enough.” To help Rural Mission, visit www.ruralmission.org. Jean Doscher contributed to this article.

Page 14, January 2011

The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

Basketball tourney to help fight malaria Health & Fitness

Event is Jan. 28-30

COLUMBIA – The S.C. Conference Youth Basketball Tournament will join with the United Methodist Church’s global health initiative Imagine No Malaria again this year. Set for Jan. 28-30 in Columbia, the tournament’s host is Epworth Children’s Home. Since 1977, this youth event has served the conference with a ministry of play, worship and sportsmanship in Christian fellowship. Last year’s tournament raised more than $6,000. Those funds were sent to the General Board of Global Ministries to help eradicate this disease from the continent of Africa. During this year, South Africa announced that it is “malaria free.” That has happened because of the hundreds of thousands of bed nets distributed across the country, educational workshops to prevent the disease and access to medicine

when the disease has been contracted. “If you could save a life, would you?” Bishop Mary Virginia Taylor asked. “Imagine No Malaria gives you the chance to actually save a whole continent by protecting people from being bitten by infected mosquitoes.” This initiative is to rapidly scale-up efforts in the fight against malaria. At the General Conference 2008, a commitment was made to a five-year campaign in partnership with leaders in global health to help overcome this disease - one that can be prevented. “Have you ever been bitten by a mosquito?” Taylor asked. “It may itch a lot, but it won’t kill you. In Africa, mosquito bites can kill you because they carry the malaria virus from which more than 3,000 children die each day.”

Local churches will be asked to adopt a team in the tournament and donate at least 50 cents for every point their team scores throughout the entire tournament (possibly $50$200). All churches will be notified after the tournament is over with their total commitment amount. Each team in the tournament is

asked to bring $10, which will purchase one bed net. To adopt a basketball team or support the initiative, contact Robin Landers at 803-786-9486, ext. 316, or [email protected], or Doris Seals 803-786-9486, ext. 317, or [email protected] You can also help make malaria history by purchasing mosquito nets through Nothing But Nets, Advance #982015, and by giving to the Community Based Malaria Program, UMCOR Advance #982009. “I am excited that our basketball players across the state can score high points in the tournament and save a lot of lives through this initiative,” Taylor said. For more information on the tournament generally, visit www.scmethodistbasketball.org, or contact Tournament Coordinator Bob Fowler at 706-481-0243 or [email protected]

To Your Health By the Rev. Sandra King

You have seen them on TV, and people everywhere are talking about them. Bedbugs are big news these days. It makes me itch just thinking about it. Bedbugs used to be a thing of the past – like polio and smallpox, or at least something we didn’t need to worry about unless we became homeless or moved to a Third World country. But bedbugs are back, showing up in the most fashionable places like posh hotels, as well as schools, churches, movie theaters, buses and even homes of good United Methodists. According to a survey conducted by the National Pest Management Association, bedbug-related calls to exterminators have risen by 81 percent during the last decade and by 57 percent during the last five years. In fact, bedbug infestations are showing up in every state and territory in these United States of America. The return of bedbugs is in part because of regulation on the use of DDT in pest control products. Commonly found in the U.S. before World War I, bedbug infestations became rare after widespread use of the pesticide DDT began in the 1940s and 1950s. I guess we might say that bedbugs were the “collateral damage” from generalized spraying for mosquitoes and other insects across the U.S. They remained prevalent in other areas of the world where DDT was not heavily used, and their numbers have been increasingly creeping back up in the U.S. since DDT was removed from common pesticides. This, along with an increase in global travel, seems to be related to the recent increase in bedbug infestations in this country. Bedbugs can live in any area of the home and can reside in tiny cracks in furniture, as well as on textiles and upholstered furniture. They seem to prefer areas where people sleep and generally concentrate in beds, including mattresses, box springs and bed

frames (which is why they are called bedbugs!). Contrary to popular belief, bedbugs do not typically infest the sleeping surfaces of beds, but rather cluster in cracks and crevices along the bed frame and mattress edging. In addition to beds, bedbugs often live in curtains, along the edges of carpet, inside corners of furniture, in picture frames, within cracks in wallpaper near the bed and in wicker furniture. They can even be found living in vacant homes and buildings because they can live for months without feeding. They tend to hide during the day and come out to feed during the night when it is dark. Bedbugs are tiny, wingless, reddish-brown insects about the size of an apple seed. They feed by sucking blood from an unsuspecting host. Their bites are generally small and red with a darker red center and can be found in clusters or lined up in rough rows. They may cause severe itching, particularly if you are allergic to the saliva that is injected under the skin when the bedbug bites. A bedbug can live for anywhere between four months and one year, making it especially difficult to control an infestation. Bedbugs do not carry diseases, but they can still be pesky and difficult to eradicate. If you have a bedbug infestation, you will need to

contact a licensed pest control company for treatment. Expect to pay somewhere between $1,000 to $1,500, depending on the size of the problem. To reduce your chances of having a bedbug problem, the Harvard School of Public Health recommends the following: • Reduce clutter to limit hiding places for bedbugs. • Scrub likely surfaces with a stiff brush to dislodge eggs, and use a powerful vacuum to remove bedbugs from cracks and crevices. Dismantle bed frames and remove drawers from desks and dressers; turn furniture over to inspect and clean all hiding spots. • Encase mattresses and box springs inside special mattress bags. Periodically inspect the bags for holes or tears – seal these completely with permanent tape. Any bugs trapped inside these sealed bags will eventually die. • Pull the bed frame away from the wall, tuck in sheets and blankets so they won’t contact the floor and place the frame legs into dishes or cups of mineral oil. • Caulk and seal all holes where pipes and wires penetrate walls and floor, and fill cracks around baseboards and cove moldings. • Contact a licensed pest control operator who is knowledgeable and experienced in managing bedbug infestations if you own your residence. Ask the pest control company for references, and ask at least a few of their customers about their experiences before you agree to any contract. By following this advice and staying vigilant, you can go to bed at night without worrying about this problem that can really get under your skin. Sleep tight, and don’t let the bedbugs bite! King serves as minister at Leesville United Methodist Church in Leesville. She is a registered nurse with a master’s degree in health nursing.

January 2011, Page 15

The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

Orangeburg’s Great Day of Sharing and Service About 50 United Methodists gathered at Trinity United Methodist Church in Orangeburg Sept. 25 for the second annual Great Day of Sharing and Service. The group hailed from seven churches in the Orangeburg District. District Superintendent the Rev. John Hipp welcomed the group. The Rev. Larry McCutcheon, pastor of Trinity UMC, also welcomed the group. A devotion followed. Refreshed with this word of God, seven groups scattered out across Orangeburg to work on numerous projects. Here are photos from the day:

The animal lovers spent the morning at the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. The five volunteers hugged the dogs and cats, plus exercised them and cleaned their pens. This group seemed to really have a good time. (Photos by Arthur Rose, Gene Atkinson and Bob Barrett)

One group hung ceiling tiles at the Cooperative Church Ministries of Orangeburg. An independent group planned to build shelves for the CCMO storage room at a later date. One group did a marvelous job cleaning the kitchen at the Samaritan House, a local shelter for the homeless. The group mopped the floor, cleaned the burners, cleaned the metal backsplash behind the stove and did other general cleanup duties.

The final group of volunteers prepared lunch for all of the other volunteers. The UM Men of St. Paul’s UMC prepared more than 150 hot dogs and fixings for the event. The Great Day of Sharing and Service culminated with participants sharing their experiences from the different work sites. Hipp and the Rev. Mike Smith led a communion service to thank God for opportunities to serve.

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Seventeen youth and youth leaders led the Backyard Bible Club for 40 children at a local Boys and Girls Club. The children participated in singing and dancing, games and a Bible Study. Lunch was provided for all participants.

Page 16, January 2011

Columbia District

Trinity UMC, West Columbia, held Noisy Offerings each Sunday from Oct. 24 to Dec. 12. Each Sunday, the congregation was encouraged to bring their loose change and drop it in the tin buckets the youth of the church held. The money raised was used to buy a gift from Heifer International.

The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

District News

their granddaughter. Michael Spencer Antley was born Nov. 26 to Michael and Lacey Antley. She was welcomed home by her big sister, Jameson. Felkel is the pastor of the Rowesville Charge, Rowesville.

Rock Hill District

Asbury Hills, Greenville, has become a Green Salamander site. The salamander is listed as rare and endangered in North Carolina and as a “Species of Special Concern” in South Carolina.

Trinity UMC, York, held its December Coins for Christ collections Dec. 12 and Dec. 19. While previous collections have been used for national and international mission work, the December offering will be used for a local ministry and will aid those who have needs such as emergency lodging or help with heat and electricity.

Congratulations to the Rev. and Mrs. Curtis Felkel on the birth of

Springtown UMC, Ruffin, will mark its 145 anniversary March 13.

Greenville District

Orangeburg District

Walterboro District

GROUNDBREAKING – St. Paul UMC, Ninety Six, celebrated 135 years of Christian service Dec. 5. They celebrated by having a groundbreaking ceremony after worship service for their new expansion of the fellowship hall and kitchen. A donation luncheon was prepared by the United Methodist Women who are raising the funds to provide the new kitchen appliances. The Rev. Philip Chandler and Building Committee Co-Chair Richard Hall spoke at the ceremony. Construction is to begin in early January.

Plantation Singers perform in concert at Trio UMC

SALTERS – The Plantation Singers from Charleston came together with local performers to entertain family, friends and visitors at Trio United Methodist Church in December. Trio is part of a three-point charge – the Trio United Methodist Charge – comprising the churches of Suttons, Earle and Trio (known by many locals as the “SET Team.”) The concert was notable for the church, as two years ago, Trio was on the verge of closing. The attendance was down to an average of five, and things looked bleak. “What a difference several years make,” said Norman Rowell, Trio’s lay leader. With the help of Trio’s sister churches and community fundraisers, Trio is still struggling, but they saw an increase in numbers – upwards of 8-20 members on Sunday mornings now. As a part of the SET Team, they are vital to the community. They stay involved in community-wide

Some of the performers and participants included Marguerite Mitchell, Jerry B. McDonald, Ralph Hatchell, Alex Hatchell and Will Rowell (all from Trio UMC); Emily Bruorton, Earle UMC; Suzette Douglas, Trinity UMC music director; Douglas Walters, Suttons UMC; Harold McCutchen and Derrick Newton, Gourdine Chapel; Hunter Morris, Andrews Church of God; and Plantation Singers from Charleston.

based events to assist those in need, such as spending Christmas Day helping feed 1,000 of those less fortunate, or being there for a cancer patient who needs medicine they cannot afford. “It’s been said, need help, call the SET Team; they are there to help, and Trio Church is proud to be a

part of this team,” Rowell said. Looking around at the Dec. 11 Palmetto Singers concert, it was evident that Trio members were proud to welcome all and celebrate the church’s blessings. “One can surely feel the Spirit of the Lord in this small quaint country church, and Saturday evening, December 11th was no exception,” Rowell said. The church praised the efforts of their pastor, the Rev. Sandra “Sandy” Hatchell, who they said keeps their hearts filled with pride and the “Spirit of the Lord.”

Clio UMWs go ‘Passionately Pink for the Cure’ CLIO – The United Methodist Women at Old Clio United Methodist Church are small in number, but they are dynamic in spirit, attitude, commitment and service. They showed their caring spirit Saturday, Oct. 16, when they took time to focus on breast cancer awareness and celebrated two victories. For months, they planned a “Passionately Pink Party for the Cure” program that was designed to inform, inspire and provide fellowship, food, fun and fundraising for the Susan G. Komen Foundation for the Cure. The Pink Party was twofold in its focus. Part one of the program was serious, informative and spirit-filled. This part of the celebration began at 10 a.m. and was held in the sanctuary of Old Clio UMC. The guests were greeted in the vestibule and were pinned with pink ribbons and given a gift bag that contained “pink items” – breast cancer awareness bracelets, pens, brochures and other gifts and information from various organizations. The program provided factual infor-

Old Clio UMW members, from left, are Tiffany Hayes, Eleanor Cook, Shima Lloyd, Mary Stanton, Mildred Thomas, Katie Hayes and Elizabeth Hayes.

mation presented by two outreach workers. Lynette Nelson from the Best Chance Network and Renee Stanton from Select Health of South Carolina Inc. emphasized the importance of monthly breast exams and yearly mammograms. The audience was informed about ways to get assistance to pay for mammograms and was also informed about criteria and programs that would pay entire costs of screening exams. A very lively question and answer period followed the presentations. The highlight of the program, however, was testimonials of victory given by

two breast cancer survivors. The messages presented by the two women, Betty J. Hicks and Sonya Taylor, inspired words of encouragement from the audience, which included a person who was recently diagnosed and treated for breast cancer. The program ended with a soul-stirring circle prayer for breast cancer patients and survivors everywhere followed by a ceremony in which the United Methodist Women of Old Clio received collectible pins from the Susan G. Komen Foundation. Part two of the pink celebration focused on fellowship, food, fun and fundraising. The guests, outreach workers and cancer survivors assembled in the fellowship hall of Old Clio UMC and played games after making donations. Some played bingo and enjoyed a cake walk while others spent their time playing “Pick-A-Chick.” Still others decided to be creative and make jewelry. At the end of the day’s activities, the ladies had raised $410 to help find a cure for breast cancer.

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THE AMERICAN METHODISTS: ORGANIZATION, DIVISION, REUNION By Roger M. Gramling

Describes major developments in the history of American Methodism from the 1760’s through 1939 An excellent resource for Sunday School Class Studies, Adult Membership Classes, or as a handout for new members of The United Methodist Church Sixty Pages, Softbound $2.50 Each Includes Postage Make Checks Payable To And Send Orders To The Author, The Reverend Roger M. Gramling 155 Hunters Blind Drive Columbia, SC 29212-1624

The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

January 2011, Page 17

Other News

What people are saying about Revolution

COLUMBIA – The design team for the 2011 youth event Revolution said responses to the event have been overwhelmingly favorable: “Revolution was amazing. The atmosphere set the stage for an unbelievable worship experience.” – Nancy “Revolution was life-changing for me. This experience really helped me in my walk with Christ and was an experience that I will never forget.” –Jared “Revolution was great and I’m looking forward to Revolution 2011 and having fun. The worship and music were awesome!” – Curtis “The worship was excellent. I am looking forward to George Moss and his hip-hop this year.” – Jeremy “I expect a new experience by

attending Revolution 2011. I will be a first-timer.” – Treyvon “I loved Revolution last year. The rappers were great! I also loved the dancers and youth singers.” – Jalen “Revolution 2010 was awesome – I was spiritually lifted and loved the interaction with all the many people. Thanks for the experience.” – Briana “Revolution 2010 was radical! It was a great way for youth to come together and celebrate in Christ. Can’t wait for Revolution 2011.” – Ebony Set for Feb. 11-13 at the Metropolitan Convention Center in Columbia, registration is going on now. Visit www.umcsc.org/youth to sign up online and register your youth group.

At Trinity United Methodist Church, North Myrtle Beach, members believe those who serve our country and their families should never be without the basics. But there are a growing number of men, women and children in this group who are hungry and homeless. Over the past four years, Trinity UMC has been attempting to meet some of their needs. In the spring of 2007 as a mission project of a Bible study group led by the Rev. Ed Daniel called “Beginning Life Together,” they decided to call on the church to reach out to this community. Calling it the Armed Services

Assistance Program, they asked that each family contribute $1/month or $12/year to this program, and they responded overwhelmingly. With these funds they were able to provide food packages to eight to 10 families a month. The packages, which cost around $31, can provide enough food to supplement the feeding needs of a family of four for up to two weeks. In the first year of the program, with this meager $1/month per church family, the program was able to provide more than 5,000 meals. In 2010, ASAP received additional funds from several outside sources: The American Legion North Myrtle Beach,

NILSEN IN CONCERT! – The Marlboro Circuit (New Hope, Oak Grove and Pleasant Hill UMCs) presented John Nilsen Sept. 25 in a special solo piano concert at Pleasant Hill UMC, Wallace. The son of a retired United Methodist pastor, Nilsen (above) is one of the most successful recording artists in the Northwest with more than 800,000 records sold. Nilsen performed some of his original instrumental pieces. After the concert, all gathered in the fellowship building for refreshments and autographed CDs.

Trinity UMC continues Armed Services Assistance Program

TEAMWORK TO THE TEST – Spartanburg District clergy and spouses put some extra holiday spirit into their annual Christmas dinner Dec. 2 by holding a wrapping relay. Pastors were selected from the crowd and had to wrap a package together with one partner using their right hand and the other partner using their left. Here, District Superintendent Paul Harmon wraps with the Rev. Will Malambri, St. James UMC, Spartanburg. (Photo by Rev. Kathy James)

Change of Appointment

Bishop Mary Virginia Taylor has announced the following change of appointment:

Effective Nov. 21, 2010 Marion District: Hopewell – Jim Hyatt (RSY)

Ladies Auxiliary, Sons of the American Legion and the Elks Club. ASAP now services almost 30 families and provided over 14,000 individual meals this year to date. They have also provided services through referral to other organizations. This year, the program has adopted families with children for Christmas. This has been done in conjunction with other groups in the church such as The Trinity Crafters and one Sunday school class. Another arm of this program passes out supplies and emergency food vouchers for local fast food restaurants to homeless veterans.

“This is a program that even the smallest church can do,” said the Rev. Ed Daniel. “There are very few families who cannot give one or two dollars a month. If each church could feed just one veteran family in need by whatever means, what a blessing that would be to those who give so much yet ask for so little. Jesus said, ‘Blessed are the peace makers.’ We can help to bring about this blessing for a group of brave men and women with so little effort on our part.” For information on starting a program like Trinity UMC’s ASAP, or to help their effort, call Daniel at 843-4217257 or 843-272-5236.

BOWMAN – On Saturday, Feb. 26, S.C. United Methodist clergy and laity will have an opportunity to dialogue with Eddie Hammett, coauthor of “Reaching People Under 40 While Keeping People Over 60.” Hammett will lead a one-day practical solution seminar based on the book he co-authored. The seminar will begin at 8:30 a.m. at New Covenant United Methodist Church, 750 Moss St., Bowman.

Hammett is known as an excellent facilator, and this seminar is designed to help any pastor and congregation address intergenerational ministry challenges and opportunities. Cost is $10 and includes lunch. To register, send $10 and your name, address, phone number, church name and pastor’s name to the Rev. Leonard Huggins Jr. at P.O. Box 580, Bowman, S.C. 29018. For more information, call Huggins at 803-829-1566.

Author Eddie Hammett to lead seminar at Covenant UMC

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Page 18, January 2011

January 2011 Jan. 1 – New Year’s Day Jan. 2 – Epiphany Sunday Jan. 6 – Epiphany of the Lord

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Upcoming Events

Jan. 14-17 – INFUSE III, Lake Junaluska, N.C. The Rev. Olu Brown will be the speaker, and Unspoken will provide music. For more information, go to Jan. www.lakejunaluska.com.

Benton will be the speaker, and Feb. 13 – Boy Scout Sunday Among the Thirsty will provide (Scouting Ministries Sunday) music. For more information, go to www.lakejunaluska.com. Feb. 21 – Presidents Day 28-30 – Life Coach Training Feb. 22 – Washington’s Birthday Program, Lake Junaluska, N.C.. For more information, go to Feb. 23 – UMW Legislative Day, www.lakejunaluska.com Epworth Children’s Home, 8:30 a.m.

Jan. 15 – Deadline for comment on a draft of the new Connectional Jan. 7 – Deadline for e-Christian eduMinistries structure for the S.C. cation course registration at Conference. The draft is posted February 2011 Columbia College. For more the conference website, on Feb. 26 – Leadership Day of Training, information about the courses (Black History Month) www.umcsc.org. sponsored by Rock Hill District offered, e-mail [email protected] Youth, will be held at First Feb. 1-3 – United Methodist Older columbiasc.edu. Jan. 16 – Human Relations Day UMC, Clover, from 9 a.m. to Adults Spiritual Life Retreat, (offering) 4:30 p.m. Titled “Imagine,” the Springmaid Beach Jan. 7-9 – INFUSE II, Lake day will empower youth to leadJunaluska, N.C. The Rev. Tim ership in their local churches. Reaves will be the speaker, and Jan. 17 – Martin Luther King Jr.’s Feb. 6 – Golden Cross Sunday (offerFor more information, contact ing) The Justin Graves Band will proBirthday Observance Angela Johnson at angelare vide music. For more [email protected] or 864-386tion, go to www.lakejunaluska. Jan. 18-25 – Week of Prayer for Feb. 11 – Lincoln’s Birthday 0358. com. Christian Unity Feb. 11-13 – Revolution, Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center Feb. 26 – Eddie Hammett, co-author Jan. 8 – Spirit Singers performance, Jan. 23 – Ecumenical Sunday of “Reaching People Under 40 Trinity UMC, York, 7 p.m. While Keeping People Over 60,” Jan. 28-30 – S.C. United Methodist Feb. 11-13 – S.C. United Methodist will lead a one-day practical Men Spiritual Retreat will be Jan. 9 – Spirit Singers performance, Youth Basketball Tournament, solution seminar based on his Feb. 11-13 at The Radisson St. John UMC, Rock Hill, 9 a.m. Epworth Children’s Home, book. It will be held at 8:30 a.m. Hotel and Conference Center, and 11 a.m. Columbia. at New Covenant United Columbia. Registration forms Methodist Church, Bowman; are available at www.ummsc. Jan. 11 – Human Trafficking Jan. 28-30 – INFUSE IV, Lake lunch is included in $10 cost. org. Awareness Day Junaluska, N.C. The Rev. Troy

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Positions Open DIRECTOR OF PROGRAMS Central United Methodist Church in downtown Newberry, SC, is seeking a Director of Programs. This person would be responsible for the coordination and oversight of the Christian Education programs involving children, youth, adult, and family ministries. Major duties include equipping and training ministry team leaders and other laity in order to enhance the overall program ministry. Candidates must have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, a great love for people, and a strong desire to nurture them in their Christian journey. Please send resume with references to [email protected] or Director of Programs Search Committee, P.O. Box 67, Newberry, SC 29108.

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January 2011, Page 19

Wofford facility gets LEED certification Green Theology

First academic building in S.C. to reach highest level

SPARTANBURG – Wofford College’s Goodall Environmental Studies Center at Glendale has received the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Platinum certification, the highest achievable level of LEED. It is the first academic building and only the third non-residential facility in the state to achieve that level. LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) is the leading national green certification program, which reviews building performance in five areas: energy efficiency, indoor environmental quality, materials selection, sustainable site development and water savings. The Goodall Environmental Studies Center is located in the restored and renovated former Glendale Mill office building overlooking the Lawson’s Fork of the Pacolet River in the historic textile mill town of Glendale. It serves as

By Betty Stalnaker Resource Center coordinator

Did you know that you can make a gift and receive guaranteed income for life?

That’s exactly what dozens of people have done since 1982 through Charitable Gift Annuities with the South Carolina United Methodist Foundation. This Wofford building has achieved a top green honor in LEED certification.

the hub of activities for Wofford’s environmental studies program. Robert L. Keasler, senior vice president for finance and operations at Wofford, notes that numerous elements were considered by the Green Building Council in the rigorous certification process for “this very green

building.” “Among the factors is that the Goodall Center uses approximately 32 percent less energy annually than average buildings of the same size and type,” he said. “It also uses 45 percent less potable, or tap, water than comparable buildings.”

Resource Center

Top 15 video/DVD resources used in 2010: 1. “What Does It Mean to Be United Methodist?” 2. “A Christmas Carol Bible Study” 3. “Esther: It’s Tough Being A Woman” 4. “The Book of Revelation (Efird Bible Study)”

5. “If You Want to Walk on Water, You’ve Got to Get Out of the Boat” 6. “Breaking the Code: Understanding the Book of Revelation” 7. “Christianity and World Religions” 8. “Wesley and His Times” 9. “Daniel: Lives of Integrity Words of Prophecy” 10. “Jesus the One and Only” 11. “Acolytes, Greeters, Ushers” 12. “Advent Conspiracy” 13. “Enough: Discovering Joy

through Simplicity and Generosity” 14. “The Gospel of John (Efird Bible Study)” 15. “Making Children Mind Without Losing Yours”

The S.C. Conference Resource Center is your connection to VHS tapes, DVDs and seasonal musicals. We are here to serve your church family. To reserve resources: 888-678-6272 or www.umcsc. org/resourcecenter/index.html.

Methodism Revisited By the Rev. J. Robert Huggins

Answer to last month’s trivia: The older of the Wesley brothers, 13 years older than John, was Samuel Wesley, named after his father. Samuel was a teacher and did some preaching along with writing poetry. While a master at Westminster School, he helped pay for the education of both John and Charles because their father, Samuel senior, was always in debt. As a young child, John Wesley was indoctrinated into the life of ministry through the conscious training of his mother, Susanna Wesley. Along with the other children, John learned to read the Bible and other books at a young age. Being so well trained in religious matters, with their mother providing not only study time but private conversations concerning spiritual mat-

The center also uses non-potable water – water from Lawson’s Fork Creek – for toilet flushing, and it uses stored rainwater instead of tap water for irrigation.

ters, this impressed and satisfied his father, Samuel, immensely. He was so impressed with John’s knowledge and understanding of religious and theology that, at the young age of 8, he was admitted to the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, which was out of the ordinary in the fact that Samuel Wesley was very exact in the matters of church rules. Yet probably the most compelling moment in young John Wesley’s life, which may have had such an impact on his calling to the ministry, occurred on the night of Feb. 9, 1709. That night, the rectory (parsonage) caught on fire. Everyone made it out in time except John, who was caught upstairs without a way out. As he leaned out of the upper floor bedroom window, Samuel Wesley fell to his knees, giving up to God the soul of his son John. Yet

minutes before the roof collapsed, fully engulfed in flames, a number of men formed a human ladder, and John was rescued. John Wesley referred to himself years later “as a brand plucked from the burning,” quoting Zechariah 3:2, which says, ”Is not this a brand plucked out of the fire?” Susanna Wesley never forgot her son’s providential deliverance. She later wrote that she was going to be “particularly careful of the soul of this child.” Methodist trivia: As a young middle school lad, John Wesley said: “I read the Scriptures, and said my prayers night and morning. I hoped to be saved by ___________.” What three things did young John Wesley say? Huggins is senior pastor of St. John UMC in Sumter.

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The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

Seniors Bishop Fisher to speak at Older Adult Spiritual Life Retreat MYRTLE BEACH – The Older Adult Spiritual Life Retreat for United Methodists will be held at Springmaid Beach Resort in Myrtle Beach Feb. 13. Bishop Violet L. Fisher, who was consecrated as bishop in 2000 but is now retired, will be the inspirational leader. Her theme will be “Old Age Is Not an Affliction: The Gift of Aging. Fisher is known as an enthusiastic, energetic people-person with a strong spirit and strong leadership skills. Music will be led by the Rev. Paul

Frey and Thomasina Conyers. Varied exercises and recreational activities will be directed by Ruth Hughes. The Talent Sharing feature, started in 2009, will return this year. Anyone who plays an instrument, sings, does skits or monologues, or performs card tricks or magic is invited to participate and share. (Call Doris Seals at the S.C. Conference, 803-786-9486, ext. 311, with information about your talent.) Reservations may be made with Springmaid by calling 800-770-6895 before Jan. 15; give the reservation

Bishop Violet L. Fisher, who will speak at the S.C. Older Adult Spiritual Life Retreat in February, preaches to the 2008 United Methodist General Conference. (A UMNS file photo by Paul Jeffrey)

GOBBLE, GOBBLE! – Saluda-St. Paul UMC members aged 80 and up enjoyed a “delightfully delicious” Thanksgiving dinner Nov. 14 in the church’s Fellowship Hall. This annual occasion serves to give thanks to those church seniors who have, over the years, provided the church that exists today. Organizers said the seniors’ never-ending time, effort and funding has ensured the church has weathered good times and bad, happy times and sad, and remained a faithful family in the continuation of the course the church has set. All enjoyed the meal and sharing memories.

ID# 8191. Commuters who wish to have meals at Springmaid should contact Mindi Weekly at 800-770-7198. To register for the retreat, send $35

made payable to COAM to Connectional Ministries, S.C. United Methodist Church, 4908 Colonial Drive, Columbia, SC 29203.

The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

January 2011, Page 21

Seniors

Shut in, but not shut out – Wilma’s armchair ministry By Betty Lewis

BATESBURG-LEESVILLE – Wilma Howard may not get to come to a lot of meetings or gettogethers, but she is very much a part of the life of St. John’s United Methodist Church, Batesburg-Leesville. Howard continues a far-reaching ministry from her armchair in her den. Close by, she has telephone, cards, stamps, writing utensils and addresses, as well as a digital photo frame that continually shows pictures of her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Howard is a member of the Adult Sunday School Class and the Mae Holler Circle of St. John’s. She sends cards for both groups, and she is usually one of the first to know, through her many telephone contacts, who needs a card – whether get-well, sympathy, birthday or just thinking of you. Howard has been a member of St. John’s since her marriage to Marion Howard in 1949. Other family members in St. John’s were her motherin-law, Pearl B. Howard, and sister-in-law, Helen Alice Doff. The Howards raised their three children at St. John’s: Arthur (married to Brenda), Helen

Shown with Wilma Howard (center) on her 79th birthday Nov. 2 are, from left, Ida Fields, Beth Feagle, Mary Cook, the Rev. Steve King, Betty Jean Lewis and Carolus Shealy. (Photo by Cari Rivers)

Rivers (married to Joey) and John Howard (Renee). Grandchildren are Jason (Tammie) and Justin Howard; and Zach (Emily) and Cari Rivers. Howard has two grandchildren: Emily and James Howard (Jason and Tammie’s children). Marion Howard died almost 11 years ago, and Wilma fell and broke her hip almost seven years ago.

During the years, she has been active in Sunday school, the nursery, United Methodist Women and has worked with the UM Youth Fellowship. The church extends many thanks to Howard for her contributions to the life of St. John’s. Members say they miss seeing her face, but they very much feel her presence and are the beneficiaries of her love and attention.

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SELFLESS SERVICE – Marion C. Fanning was honored on Homecoming Sunday, Oct. 17, at Lebanon UMC, Neeses. Church members paid tribute to her 60 years of dedicated service to the growth and life of Lebanon UMC. Former pastor Dr. Ben Gafford was the guest speaker. The Rev. Fred Davis, current pastor of Lebanon UMC and the Norway Charge, presented her with a plaque and gift.

HOLIDAY FELLOWSHIP – The Mary Addison Circle from Epting Memorial UMC held their annual Christmas Party at the Stable Restaurant in Prosperity. Pictured from top left are Ed Rollins, Louise Rollins, Katherine McEntire, Doc Richardson, Agnes Kelly, David Inman and Loretta Richardson. At bottom from left are Carolyn Sligh, Georgia Wardlaw, Betty Harmon, Florence Addison, Peggy Boozer and Marion Bradfield.

Page 22, January 2011

Clara Ann Pullian Ballard

GREENWOOD – Clara Ann Pullian Ballard, mother of the Rev. Paul Ballard, died Nov. 22, 2010. Rev. Ballard is the pastor of the ZionZoar Charge, Pageland. A graveside service was held Nov. 24 at Greenwood Memorial Gardens. Memorials may be made to HospiceCare of the Piedmont, 408 W. Alexander Ave., Greenwood, SC 29646; or to Cambridge United Methodist Church, 201 Kitson St., Ninety Six, SC 29666. Mrs. Ballard is survived by her husband, Paul M. Ballard, daughter and son.

Julian Bowen

COLUMBIA – Julian Bowen, father of Pam Howle, died Dec. 10, 2010. Mrs. Howle is the wife of the Rev. George Howle, pastor of St. John’s United Methodist Church, Aiken. Funeral services were held Dec. 13 at Asbury Memorial UMC, with burial in Greenlawn Memorial Park. Memorials may be made to Alzheimer’s Association, South Carolina Chapter, 4124 Clemson Blvd., Suite L, Anderson, SC 29621; or to Asbury Memorial UMC, 1005 Asbury Drive, Columbia, SC 29209-2186. Mr. Bowen is survived by his wife, Doris Brown Bowen, and two daughters.

Carolyn Burke Davis Bowling

ANDERSON – Carolyn Burke Davis Bowling, wife of the Rev. Ralph T. Bowling Jr. and mother of the Rev. R.T. Bowling III, died Nov. 17, 2010. Rev. Bowling Jr. is a retired member of the S.C. Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. Their son is the pastor of Hodges and Cokesbury United Methodist churches, Hodges.

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Obituaries

Funeral services were held Nov. 21 at Starr UMC, with burial in Hebron UMC Cemetery. Memorials may be made to Epworth Children’s Home, 2900 Millwood Ave., Columbia, SC 29205. Mrs. Bowling is survived by her husband and two sons.

Lawrence Brown Jr.

MONCKS CORNER – Lawrence Brown Jr., brother of the Rev. Delbert Brown, died Nov. 19, 2010. Rev. Brown is the pastor of the Ruffin Parish, Ruffin. Funeral services were held Nov. 27 at Wesley United Methodist Church.

Rev. Cecil Martin Camlin Jr.

FORT WORTH, Texas – The Rev. Cecil Martin Camlin Jr., a retired member of the S.C. Annual Conference of the United Methodist Camlin Church, died Nov. 18, 2010. Prior to his retirement in 1977, Rev. Camlin served the EasleyZion, Buncombe Street Associate, Olar, Drayton, Clifton, Gordon Memorial and Loris-First charges. He served as chaplain of the Grady Memorial Hospital, director of the S.C. Mental Health Center, National Institute of Mental Health, director of the N.C. Drug Authority and the Virginia State Health Department. A memorial service was held Nov. 26 at St. Stephen Presbyterian Church, Fort Worth. Memorials may be made to All Saints Health Foundation, Transplant Program, 1400 Eighth Ave., Fort Worth, TX 76104; or to St. Stephen Presbyterian Church,

Obituary policy:

The Advocate prints death notices of clergy and their immediate families and laypersons who have served on conference boards and agencies or who work for the S.C. Conference of the United Methodist Church.

2700 McPherson Ave., Fort Worth, TX 76109. Rev. Camlin is survived by his wife, Sara Greer Camlin, and three daughters.

Lucille Caldwell Humphries

SPARTANBURG – Lucille Caldwell Humphries, grandmother of Brian Humphries, died Nov. 22, 2010. Mr. Humphries is the husband of the Rev. Heather Humphries, associate pastor of Trinity United Methodist Church. Funeral services were held Nov. 27 at Chapel of First Presbyterian Church, with burial in Greenlawn Memorial Gardens. Memorials may be made to the Charles H. Humphries Jr. Scholarship Fund, c/o Spartanburg County Foundation, 424 E. Kennedy St., Spartanburg, SC 29302; or to Spartanburg Regional Hospice Home, 686 Jeff Davis Drive, Spartanburg, SC 29303. Mrs. Humphries is survived by her two sons and daughter.

Adell Tannery Marcengill

GREENWOOD – Adell Tannery Marcengill, mother of the Rev. Sam Marcengill, died Nov. 27, 2010. Rev. Marcengill is the pastor of Bethel-Ebenezer Charge, Simpsonville. A graveside service was held Dec. 1 at Greenwood Memorial Gardens. Memorials may be made to West Side Baptist Church, 215 Bypass 225 South, Greenwood, SC 29646;

Other News

Comments due Jan. 15 on new structure United Methodists across South Carolina have until Jan. 15 to comment on a draft of the new Connectional Ministries structure. The draft is posted on the conference website, www.umcsc.org. It culminates extensive work done by a transition team to ensure the new structure meets standards of the Book of Discipline and judicial rulings before it ultimately goes to the 2011 Annual Conference for approval in June. People are urged to visit the site, review the draft and make comments. The transition team will consider any suggested changes when they meet in late January or early February

to produce a final draft. The final draft heads to the existing Conference Council of Connectional Ministries on March 5 for its input. Then the draft will go back onto the website for more public comment, along with a list of district meetings where people can debate the nuances of the restructuring even further. Next, the document heads to Annual Conference 2011 in June for perfection and adoption. If adopted, then it will be sent to the October 2011 Judicial Council for a ruling on its legality. If all is deemed legal, then the new structure will be put into place for official implementation in 2012.

or to HospiceCare of the Piedmont, 408 W. Alexander Ave., Greenwood, SC 29646. Mrs. Marcengill is survived by her daughter and two sons.

Thomas Hilliard McGuirt

LANCASTER – Thomas Hilliard McGuirt, brother of the Rev. Milton McGuirt, died Nov. 28, 2010. Rev. McGuirt is a retired pastor serving First United Methodist Church, Hemingway. A graveside service was held Nov. 30 at Salem Cemetery, followed by a memorial service at St. Luke UMC.

Alice G. Perkins

MONCKS CORNER – Alice G. Perkins, sister of the Rev. James S. Gadsden, died Nov. 28, 2010. Rev. Gadsden is a retired member of the S.C. Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. Funeral services were held Dec. 3 at Mount Carmel AME Church, with burial in the church cemetery. Mrs. Perkins is survived by her husband, Elijah Perkins, two sons and daughter.

Betty Clay Rothrock

MADISON, N.C. – Betty Clay Rothrock, mother of Beth Rouse, died Nov. 22, 2010. Mrs. Rouse is the wife of the Rev. Mike Rouse, pastor of Main Street United Methodist Church, Dillon. A memorial service was held Nov. 27 at First Baptist Church. Memorials may be made to Lake Junaluska Assembly Inc., The Office of Development and the Foundation, P.O. Box 67, Lake Junaluska, NC 28745; or the Mayodan Public Library, 101 N. Tenth Ave., Mayodan, NC 27027. Mrs. Rothrock is survived by her three daughters.

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January 2011, Page 23

International Bible School Lessons By the Rev. Lisa C. Hawkins Hawkins is the director of Charleston Wesley Foundation and chairperson of the S.C. Conference Commission on History and Archives.

Jan. 2 I Am Your Redeemer

Lesson Scripture: Isaiah 44:21-26 Background Scripture: Isaiah 44 Key Verse: Isaiah 44: 22 – ”I have swept away your transgressions like a cloud, and your sins like mist; return to me, for I have redeemed you.” “This is not as good as it gets,” says Isaiah to the Israelites. God’s forgiveness of all of Israel’s sins not only restores the past, but also “creates water in desert.” Desert land will be transformed into green, fertile valleys. Their exile is about to end, but more importantly, they are about to enter into a closer, more profound relationship with God. Unlike the other defeated nations of the time whose gods were also defeated, Israel’s relationship with God endured no matter the circumstance. Even in exile surrounded by polytheism, God continues to speak through the prophets to God’s people. With no apology, Isaiah condemns the idolaters as frauds. Their idols were created “out of the elements of creation,” and God was the source of creation. Therefore, it is God and not the elements who is the source of rest and relief for both the believer and nonbeliever. In order to dispel any doubt and create trust, Isaiah skillfully invites the Israelite to remember all of the past acts of God – acts of judgment and forgiveness (44:21). This is the God who was acting on their behalf to restore, create and redeem. Creation itself was celebrating. God’s promises and willingness to forgive were as constant and dependable as nature herself. Israel was not to be only a judged, exiled, forgiven, rescued people; Israel was to be a redeemed people! What similarities do you see in the way God works in our lives today and in the lives in the days of Isaiah? How do we as redeemed respond to crises and disappointments? What is God calling us to do in light of our nation’s economy?

Jan. 9 Turn To Me and Be Saved

Lesson Scripture: Isaiah 45: 18-24 Background Scripture: Isaiah 45 Key Verse: Isaiah 45:22 – “Turn to

me and be saved, all the ends of the earth!”

All people are to be saved by Yahweh. Cyrus, one of the Babylonian oppressors, would be the instrument through whom God would save not only Israel, but the world. But before the Israelites could believe this prophecy, they first would have to accept that God’s ways were not their ways. God intended to rescue not only those Israelites who had adhered to their religious practice, but also those Israelites who survived by marrying the Babylonians and accepting their ways. Moreover, God’s invitation into relationship included their Babylonian oppressors. God’s invitation includes the entire human race: A bitter pill to swallow for the Israelites of days of Isaiah, as well as today’s Christians. In creation, God brought forth order, not chaos, to be inhabited. Thus every aspect of creation benefits all of creation: the hot desert winds are alongside oases of water and shade, and thunderstorms bring needed moisture in season nourishing all life. In spite of humanity’s innate tendency to dominate each other, God quietly directs history toward peace. This God who orders all of creation is certainly able to bring order out the chaotic events of life. This is the message from Isaiah to the Israelites and to us today. Isaiah offers two theological ideas. First, the saving activity of God is hidden within the events of history. Second, the salvation of God, initiated through Israel, would never be confounded. In other words, Israel affirmed God’s universal intention for the world’s salvation. What does this text tell you about the nature of God? How would you respond to someone who said, “What persuades you to believe that there is only one God who is both creator and savior?”

Jan. 16 Reassurance for God’s People

Lesson Scripture: Isaiah 48:14-19, 21-22 Background Scripture: Isaiah 48 Key Verse: Isaiah 48:20 – “Go out from Babylon, flee from Chaldea, declare this with a shout of joy, proclaim it, send it forth to the end of the earth; say, ‘The Lord has redeemed his servant Jacob!’” Isaiah had a difficult task. His mission was to speak to a people who felt God had abandoned them

to their enemies. In exile, God had sent a prophet to draw the people, the exiled people, back into relationship with God. Isaiah’s call was both to woo Israel back to God and confront them with their part in their exile state. God was bringing about their release in ways they could not comprehend. They had to believe and trust in God and God’s new way of acting on their behalf. Cyrus, the Babylonian leader would be their champion. Isaiah sought to lead the exiled, fearful people into a renewed relationship with the God whose negative judgment against them they thought would never end. Part of God’s divine plan was for the Israelites to accept their responsibility for their present predicament. It was their ignoring of God’s law and attempt to live without God that brought them into captivity. They wandered away from God. The good news was that God never allowed the relationship to dissolve. Israel was not forsaken by God, who was now preparing a new chapter in their covenantal relationship. It was time to sing a new song: one of hope and joy. How does God respond to people who make serious mistakes? In light of this text, how can the contemporary church lead her people into repentance and renewed relationship with God?

Jan. 23 The Servant’s Mission in the World

Lesson Scripture: Isaiah 49:1-6 Background Scripture: Isaiah 49:1-6 Key Verse: Isaiah 49:6 – “I will give you as a light to the nations, that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.” The servant of God has Godgiven gifts to complete the mission. In this text, the servant has the gift of persuasive speech and the blessed protection of God’s grace. He speaks with authenticity and audacity to the weary exiles. He writes of being called to service even before his birth. God protects him: “He was hidden in the shadow of God’s hand and kept within the quiver of God’s appointed.” God equips God’s servant with the gifts and insights needed for the mission. That is the spiritual balance within a call: God provokes passion and provides resources. In an authentic call, task and resource are uniquely fitted together. This does not mean that discouragement and disappointment does not enter into the servant’s life. In

verse 4, the servant faces failure, but it is from his response that the original readers and today’s readers can learn much. The servant accepts the failure without blaming God. Note that Isaiah’s servant is unnamed. Could it be that each of us is the servant? God continues to call, gift, protect and recommission God’s people to carry on the divine work of reconciliation, witness and redemption. How are you being a servant in your family, your church and your community? What is God’s call on your life? How are you responding?

Jan. 30 Healed By His Bruises

Lesson Scripture: Isaiah 53:4-6, 10-12 Background Scripture: Isaiah 53 Key Verse: Isaiah 53 – “But he was wounded for our transgressions, crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the punishment that made us whole, and by his bruises we are healed.” This is possibly the best-known passage of Isaiah, the Suffering Servant. As Christians, we immediately see Jesus in this role: “By His bruises we are healed.” Yet if we can visit this text as its original audience, another faith-provoking theme arises. The exiled Israelites struggled to receive and be led by God’s Word. In spite of their present circumstance, God was always with them, preparing to restore and redeem them. Awaiting them was not a return to the past but to a glorious future where Israel would truly be a “light to all the nations.” The life and death of the Suffering Servant appears to be a tragic life where God is absent. There seems to be no indications of God’s favor in any part of his life. Even his death was a tragic injustice! Yet in this sad life and horrible death, all of our sins are forgiven and a path to a God-led future is established. This new theology denounces the old thought that God’s blessings are always tangible. The usual signs or manifestations of a blessed existence, such as marriage, children and possessions, are conspicuously absent in the Suffering Servant’s life. Yet his life taught the Israelites and today’s Christians a new way of Godly living. In the light of Isaiah 53, what would this say to someone who believes that all suffering is punishment? What might this passage say to the church as to her role as a suffering servant?

DELEGATES: Election process begins for clergy, laity Page 24, January 2011

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gates to Jurisdictional, giving S.C. a total representation of 36 delegates to that gathering. The Rev. Timothy Rogers, secretary of the S.C. Conference, explained that while this number is a reduction from 2008 (when S.C. sent 20 delegates to General Conference and 40 delegates to Jurisdictional), it was expected. “As the United Methodist Church grows overseas, and more delegates are elected from the Central Conferences, fewer delegates are available to represent conferences within the United States,” Rogers said. Rogers said Reist had contemplated reducing the number of delegates to General Conference even further. On behalf of the S.C. Conference, Rogers filed a brief at the Judicial Council’s fall meeting, questioning Reist’s authority to do so, but the top court ruled it had no jurisdiction to rule on this. However, at the Nov. 5 Council of Bishops’ gathering in Panama, Reist announced the number of delegates for the 2012 GC will be

The South Carolina United Methodist Advocate

The election process begins Now work begins on the election, which will be held at Annual Conference in June. For lay delegates, those interested in being a delegate should go to the Conference Board of Laity website (www.umcsc.org/boardoflaity) and download the nomination form, which they must complete and return to the district superintendent by Jan. 10. During the month of January, each district will hold training sessions so lay delegates can learn the process for selecting delegates and nominate delegates from their district to go on the ballot at Annual Conference. Each district can nominate as many as 10 delegates. Names and biographies of delegate nominees will go to the Conference Secretary and will ultimately become a

part of the Pre-Conference Journal that people can study prior to Annual Conference, when lay delegates will be voted on. “I encourage anyone with an interest and passion for the church [to submit a nomination form] because of the fact that General Conference is when you actually make changes to the Book of Discipline,” said Conference Lay Leader Joseph Heyward. “It’s very important. It’s also a major commitment – it’s time consuming, there is a great body of work to read and study, and there is also a twoweek commitment.” For clergy delegates, the conference has posted on its website (www.umcsc.org) a list of all clergy who are eligible to be elected. The Office of the Conference Secretary also has sent a letter to each clergy member who is eligible to be elected, notifying them of their eligibility. This year, those clergy not interested in serving as a delegate may have their name removed from the ballot by asking the Conference Secretary to omit their

name. Pre-printed cards to assist clergy in making that request were included in the letter sent to each eligible clergy. “Reducing the number of names listed on the ballots is designed to simplify and speed up the balloting process,” Rogers said.

Conference.” In an effort to continue strong financial stewardship for 2011 and beyond, Prestipino is sending a letter to all committee chairs urging them to reassess their expenses and letting them know some new changes: the conference now needs to sign off on any contracts that are more than one year in length, and the

conference will not pay expenses for any items beyond what is received to date. “In general, there will be a lot more screening of expenses,” he said. “It’s not that we haven’t been thinking of it or that we’ve been spending unnecessarily, but there is more review now.”

After the 2010 books are complete, committees will each re-evaluate what they did in 2010 and what they plan for 2011.

near the 1,000-delegate limit, stating any significant reduction in the number of delegates should occur in concert with a more comprehensive look at the whole process.

More representative voting? For clergy, another significant change in the process this year is that, for the first time, provisional members, associate members and some local pastors will be allowed to vote for clergy delegates. All provisional members and all associate members will be permitted to vote at Annual Conference, although they are not eligible for election. Also, local pastors may vote (although they may not be elected) if they have completed either a master of divinity or the Basic Course of Study, and have served a minimum of two consecutive years under appointment immediately preceding the election. Both full- and part-time local pastors who meet those requirements may vote.

APPORTIONMENTS: Mood one of hopeful patience From Page 1

and then send one big check,” he said. For now, the mood is one of hopeful patience. “We think that, even in the midst of everything taking place in the economy today, the church is going to be faithful and loyal and we are going to receive 83 percent,” said the Rev. Ed McDowell, chair of the Council on Finance and Administration. McDowell said the estimation is “relatively approachable and very doable” given that the conference is just 2 percentage points below where it was last year at this time. “We hope and pray that it happens,” McDowell said, asking people to put this on a prayer list. “If it doesn’t happen, then we’re going to find ourselves in a real tizzy. … But if we can get beyond this breach, we’re almost destined to have a bright and shining day somewhere down the road.” Apportionments are paid to the conference by all churches in S.C; the money pays for various items the conference has committed to support, such as missions, campus ministries, administration and more. If churches don’t pay apportionments adequately or on time, then these items suffer, Prestipino said. “You can only do so much with your financial resources,” he said. Prestipino said the conference is thankful for what churches have paid so far, given the recession. “I know there’s a huge shortfall with local churches, and times are tough,” he said. “What they see at the local church [in terms of donations] is mirrored at the Annual