Introducing AC 2014 Theme "Living Out The POWER of We"
By Rev. Dr. Connie Shelton, Director of Connectional Ministries and Communications
The 2014 Session of the Mississippi Annual Conference convenes at the Jackson Convention Complex, June 6-8, to experience "Living Out The POWER of We." Exciting worship coordinated by Rev. Chris McAlilly and Kay Barksdale includes music leadership with the Orchard's praise team, a clergy choir, solos and small ensembles.
McAlilly said, "Our deepest hope is that annual conference worship will be the instrument and means of God's grace through which the presence of the risen Christ will offer us once again the 'peace which passes all understanding,' the love of Christ which drives out all fear and the gift of the Holy Spirit which will propel us once again along the path of discovery into the ongoing work of God's kingdom in the world."
Spirit empowered preaching by Bishop James E. Swanson, Sr., Mississippi area, and Bishop Mike Watson, the North Georgia area, will bookend the session. United Methodists from across Mississippi are invited to experience the POWER of the Holy Spirit through worship. All are invited.
A Day of Learning and Mission: Hunger, Health, Children and Vital Congregations
United Methodists (beyond members of the annual conference) may participate in learning and mission workshops on Thursday, June 5 at the Jackson Convention Complex.
Workshops will include Safe Sanctuary Training by attorney Joy T. Melton, author of the bestseller, "Safe Sanctuaries: Reducing the Risk of Child Abuse in the Church" and "Safe Sanctuaries for Youth: Reducing the Risk of Abuse in Youth Ministries." Melton helps churches assess risk and implement processes to help congregations take steps to reduce the likelihood of abuse in their congregational settings.
Rev. Stephen Sparks and a diverse team of Mississippi leaders will convene a conversation on contemporary worship.
Lee Burdine and health ministry advocates and ambassadors will offer models of transforming health ministries for communities.
Rev. Carol Burnett, Congregations for Children's legislative liaison and advocate, will guide laity and clergy on issues facing children. Burnett is the director of the Moore Community House in Biloxi, Mississippi.
Mike Howington, youth and family ministry coordinator for the Mississippi Conference, will lead clergy and laity interested in volunteer youth leader conversations.
Mission opportunities to pack meals for Stop Hunger Now will be available. Stop Hunger Now is an international hunger relief organization that coordinates the distribution of food and other life-saving aid around the world.
Many more workshops will be offered. Leaders of all 1,000 United Methodist congregations in Mississippi are encouraged to participate in these holy conferencing opportunities.