Revival to focus on facing life's storms


The Rev. Guss Shelly knows a thing or two about storms.

Pastor of Gulfport First United Methodist, Shelly had been scheduled to preach in a revival at Madison United Methodist before Hurricane Katrina derailed plans. He is currently living in a camper parked in his driveway while home repairs are under way. About 122 families — a third of the Gulfport FUMC congregation — were either left without homes or with homes that were severely damaged by the storm.

Shelly will be the guest speaker at Madison United Methodist’s revival services, scheduled Jan. 22-25. The theme of the revival is “Weathering the Storm: Building a Substantive Faith That Will Carry You Through.” The revival is set for 6:30 p.m. Sunday and 6:15 p.m. Monday-Wednesday.

There will be children’s activities each night, and a nursery for children 3 and under.

To help busy families, dinner will be served at 5:15 p.m. Monday-Wednesday. Cost of the meals will be $3 for adults and $2 for children on Monday and Tuesday, and $4 for adults and $2 for children on Wednesday. To assist in preparation, call (601) 856-6058 to make reservations for meals.

The devastation of Hurricane Katrina will be part of the theme of the revival.

Madison UMC, an American Red Cross shelter for weeks after the Aug. 29 storm, has a long-term recovery ministry planned. Two groups of youth have traveled to assist in hurricane aid along the Gulf Coast and members of the church have traveled to Gulfport to help Shelly and his wife Sarah make repairs to their home. Shelly had shoulder surgery in the fall, so help in repairs has been needed and appreciated.

After the hurricane, Shelly said he was touched that those who had “literally lost everything they had were sharing with others. They were trying to share with us what they had in their cars — water, canned food, crackers. If we told them we had enough at the church, they would say to pass it along to someone else who needed it.”


Guitar quartet to visit Millsaps

The William Carey College Guitar Quartet will present a mix of various periods when it performs Jan. 20 at Millsaps College.

The event is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Jan. 20 in the Ford Academic Recital Hall on the Millsaps College campus. The recital is free and open to the public.

Scheduled works by the group include Boccherini’s Introduction and Fandango, Slavonic Dances by Dvorak, popular Brazilian dances by Machado, Cuban Landscape with Rumba by Leo Brouwer and a potpourri of French tunes by Roland Dyens.

Inspired by the successes and attraction of such great guitar quartets as the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet, Los Romeros, the Canadian Guitar Quartet, and the Zagreb Guitar Quartet, William Carey guitar professor Dr. Miroslav Loncar joined with three of his students, Armin Abdihodzic, Alma Sehic and Paulina Puljek, to form this quartet. The four gave their first public performance at the 2005 Summer Guitar festival in Karlovac, Croatia and are now scheduled to give several performances throughout Mississippi.

Loncar has been concertizing for over 20 years as a soloist and with the Klasinc & Loncar Guitar Duo and Trio Bolero. He has appeared with several orchestras and has recorded and published original works for guitar internationally. Abdihodzic is a junior guitar performance major from Bosnia, Sehic is a senior guitar performance major from Bosnia and Puljek is a junior guitar performance major from Croatia. As soloists and members of various chamber groups, all have won several prizes at state and regional competitions.

For more information, contact Linda Nix at 601-974-1422 or


Special events top CLC agenda

A concert by bluesman Willie King and an event honor slain civil rights leader Medgar Evers have been added to the 2006 Clergy Leadership Conference.

The event, formerly known as Ministers’ Week, is scheduled for Feb. 6-8 at Alta Woods United Methodist Church in Jackson.

The concert is scheduled for 6 p.m. Feb. 6, while the Evers event is set for Feb. 7.

The theme for this year’s event is “A Time to Heal…”

A team of faculty from Duke Divinity School will lead the discussion. Faculty members include Dr.  Pamela Hawkins, associate director of Pulpit & Pew at the Duke Center for Excellence in Ministry; Dr. Keith Meador, professor of the Practice of Pastoral Theology and Medicine and director of the Theology and Medicine program; Dr. William Turner, associate professor of the Practice of Homiletics, and former Mississippi Conference Bishop Kenneth Carder, professor of the Practice of Pastoral Formation and director of Pulpit & Pew

Registration is $90 and participants will receive two CEUs. Registration is available on-line at 

Clergy in communities impacted by Katrina may contact their district superintendent for special registration arrangements.


Gulfport to welcome tango group

QuinTango is a unique chamber ensemble dedicated to the musical performance of tango.

The group is scheduled to appear at Gulfport First United Methodist Church at 7 p.m. Jan. 28 at part of the Arts Under the Dome artist series.

Inspired by the Argentine orquesta tipica the classic tango orchestra of violins, bandoneons, bass and piano, QuinTango brings its own interpretations to this evocative music. They have performed at the White House, the Kennedy Center, Virginia’s Wolf Trap, Charleston’s Piccolo Spoleto International Music Festival, and are regularly invited to tour Costa Rica and Argentina.

The ensemble brings a century’s worth of tango repertoire to the stage.

Tickets are $10 for adults and $7 for students. For information, call 228-863-0047.


Grenada UMW hosts craft fair

The United Methodist Women of Grenada First United Methodist Church sponsored the First Fruits Artisans and Craft Fair during the fall.

All proceeds went to their mission projects. All spaces were rented with 18 vendors participating including crafters and local retailers. The UMW’s cold deli and bake sale were a success raising approximately $2,200. The vendors added an additional $600 to missions by donating 10 percent of their sales for the day. Over $4,200 for UMW mission projects was raise.

Plans are underway for the next First Fruits event. The date has been set for Nov. 11. Organizers welcome vendors. Inside booths are $40 and outside booths are $25. Plans call for outdoor entertainment, a cold deli, bake sale and casserole items and a special coffee booth. For information, call Bev Shepherd at 662-226-6104 or 662-809-9940.


Women of Vine plan conference

Noted speaker and author Sharon Jaynes and the Rev. Cynthia Cross will be the featured guests for the fourth Women of the Vine spiritual renewal conference.

The event is scheduled for Feb. 25 at the Neshoba County Coliseum. Since it’s inception in 2002, the regional group of Christian women brought nationally-known speakers such as Alicia Williamson, Jan Silvious and Priscilla Shirer to Neshoba County. 

Heralded as a talented “storyteller,” Jaynes of North Carolina has shared her love for the Lord and passion for life through daily radio broadcasts heard internationally on more than 900 radio stations through Proverbs 31 Ministries. She encourages and inspires women in her recently released book Becoming a Woman Who Listens to God.

Cross serves as pastor at Meridian St. Elizabeth United Methodist Church and at St. Mark UMC in Daleville. She will provide Bible teaching.

“This year, we not only wanted to provide an inspirational time of worship and extraordinary Bible teaching, but also to share from the hearts of members of Women of the Vine,” said Chair Susan Seal. “Participants will no doubt relate to the struggles of the journey and be encouraged by the evidence of the God’s sustaining grace and unlimited power.”

In addition, members of Women of the Vine will also share their personal, spiritual journeys. The Women of the Vine Praise and Worship Team will lead the music. 

Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 the day of the event. Box lunches are available for $5 for participants buying advanced tickets. Groups of 10 or more that pre-register together will receive a complimentary box lunch for each member of their group.

For more information or ticket purchases call 601-656-2306 or 662-320-2441, email: womenofthevine or visit


Seminar targets small churches

Small-membership churches make up a large percentage of The United Methodist Church. Statistics show that:

50 percent of United Methodist have average worship attendance of under 55

83 percent of United Methodist churches have average worship attendance of under 150

UM churches with under 200 members on roll are 67 percent of the total UM churches

To help pastors serve churches of this size, the Hinton Rural Life Center offers “Pastoring the Smaller Membership Church” Feb. 6-8 at its facility in Hayesville, N.C.

Plenary sessions will focus on the culture and dynamics of the smaller membership churches and legislative changes to rural church ministry. There will also be opportunity for special focus in specific areas. Participants may choose two from these course options:

Focus: Visioning and Planning for Ministry

Cooperative Ministry

More than Passing the Plate: Financial Stewardship for the Smaller Congregation

Born Again in Every Place

A $50 registration fee is required. Cost for a shared room and meals is $110 or $135 for a private room and meals. Cost for spouses is $60 (room and board only). An administration fee of $10.00 will be retained for all cancellations. Attendees may earn 1.5 CEUs.

For more information, contact Mollie M. Stewart at or 1-866-389-833.