Communications workshops offered


Series to share tips on getting church news in the media  
The North Georgia Conference Communications Office is hosting a limited series of workshops to teach the fundamentals of external communications and making the best use of your time and resources. We will be offering the same workshop on three different dates in three different locations.
       North Georgia Advocate Editor Glenn Hannigan, a former senior editor at The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, will share insider tips and specific steps to help get your news in the news. Who should attend: pastors, administrative assistants, and any staff members who send out e-mails, newsletters, or any other written material.  Also incorporated into the day will be an opportunity for a constructive critique of your newsletter, bulletin, and any other print materials you bring with you.
      Workshop dates and locations are: Monday, Oct. 24 at Madison First, Madison, GA; Tuesday, Oct. 25 at Sam Jones, Cartersville, GA; and Thursday, Nov. 3,  at the UM Center at Simpsonwood, Norcross, GA. 
     The deadline to register is Oct. 21. On-line registration is required at The $10 fee includes lunch. For questions, please contact Beth Barnwell at

Gainesville district churches join in missions
      The United Methodist churches of the Gainesville District are hosting a two-in-one event on Oct. 8 for very worthy causes. First, the churches will join with Square Foot Ministries to raise money and build a home for James Doyle and his family. Mr. Doyle has recently retired from the military after 20 years of service with injuries that have left him 70 percent disabled, for which he was presented the Purple Heart and the Bronze Star. A total of $10,000 is needed for the home construction costs.
     The churches are also joining Stop Hunger Now, an advocacy organization, to pack 10,000 meals for those in need. A total of $2,500 is needed for food packages. The two-in-one event will be held at Cleveland United Methodist Church. All are invited to donate and to attend.
 Johns Creek UMC: Guest speaker to discuss suicide
     Iris Bolton, a nationally recognized expert on the topic of suicide, will speak at Johns Creek UMC at 7 p.m. Oct. 9.  She will address adults and teens on the three areas of suicidology: prevention, intervention, and postvention (aftercare).  This event is free to the public.
      Bolton’s 20-year-old son, Curtis Mitchell Bolton, died by suicide in 1977. A year later she started one of the first survivor support groups in the country. Her 1983 book, “My Son, My Son: A Guide to Healing After Death, Loss or Suicide,” describes in detail the journey she made from the devastation of losing her son to the step-by-step healing that took place.
     She is executive director of The Link Counseling Center in Atlanta, which offers the National Resource Center (NRC) for Suicide Prevention and Aftercare. She is a member of the National Council for Suicide Prevention and is co-founder of the North Atlanta Chapter of Compassionate Friends, a national, self-help organization for bereaved parents.
     The church is at 11180 Medlock Bridge Rd., Johns Creek, GA 30097. 770-497-8215.
Covington First UMC: Mutt Show, pet blessings
    The Covington church is partnering with the Newton County Humane Society to present a Mutt Show at 9 a.m. Oct. 8 on the square in downtown Covington. Judging will begin at 10 a.m., with categories Most Beautiful, Most Handsome, Best Trick, Best Dressed, Look Alike, Best Kisser and Most Obedient. Ribbons will be awarded for first, second and third place in each category. Dogs must be on leashes, be at least six months old and have proof of rabies inoculation.
    The church’s senior pastor, Dr. Douglas Gilreath, associate pastor, the Rev. Jan McCoy, will hold a Blessing of the Animals service at 11:30 a.m. on the square. Dogs, cats, fish, hamsters, rabbits, turtles - all beloved pets – are welcome. All animals must be properly leashed or caged for their safety.
Jonesboro church donation STANDALONE CUTLINE
     Wesley Community Center Executive Director Cande Taylor (center) presents the 2010 Bishop's Award to Rev. Candy Thacker (left) and Rev. George Freeman of Jonesboro First UMC for donating $7,212 to the 2010 Wesley Walk for Othres. The church’s contribution was the largest in the North Georgia Conference.  This represented the eighth consecutive year that Jonesboro has received this recognition, during which time more than $57,000 was given by the Jonesboro church. 
Center Valley UMC: Rummage sale, Halloween fest
      Shoppers and donors are welcome to participate in the Chatsworth church’s annual rummage sale, 9 a.m. Oct. 8. The church is at 5394 Hwy. 225 N. Info: contact Rev. Maria Newsum at 706-695-3203 or
      The church’s annual barbeque and trunk-or-treat fest will begin at 11 a.m. Oct. 29. Featuring southern barbecue, homemade desserts, arts and crafts and activities for children.
Decatur First UMC: Lecture addresses global topic
     “Is the World Still Our Parish?” is the topic of a lecture set for 7 p.m. Oct. 13, by Wesley de Souza, Arthur J. Moore Associate Professor in the Practice of Evangelism.  
      The session will take place in the church chapel, 318 Sycamore St. Free parking available behind the church sanctuary on 300 East Ponce de Leon Ave. A shuttle will run between the parking lot and the chapel.
     To make a reservation for free childcare or get more information, visit or 404-378-4541.
Oak Grove UMC: Milestones celebrated in October
     Members will celebrate the church’s 175th anniversary and the 50th annual barbecue on the weekend of Oct. 15-16
     Ancestors of the original congregation are active in the DeKalb County church today.
      “As a church pastor in a growing metro area, it’s remarkable to have that weekly connection with the church’s history,” said senior pastor Dr. Glenn Ethridge. In fact, when Oak Grove celebrates 175 years of ministry on October 16, families whose membership spans six generations are likely to be in attendance. 
      But that Sunday milestone is just part of the story. On Saturday, October 15, the church will hold its 50th annual barbecue on church grounds. This yearly fundraiser, which is prepared and sponsored by the United Methodist Men, has become a treasured tradition in this part of DeKalb County. Last year the church served more than 5,000 plates of open pit pork barbecue, Brunswick stew, and homemade cole slaw and desserts, all prepared by church members. 
      The barbecue takes place 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Oct. 16. Adult plates are $8, and children’s plates $5. Baked goods, used books and arts and crafts will be for sale. Live bluegrass and gospel music is planned.
       Homecoming worship begins at 10:30 a.m. Oct. 17, followed by a luncheon. The church is in Decatur at 1722 Oak Grove Road. 404-636-7558.
Young Harris College offers workshop
     The Faith and Life Program at the college is hosting an Oct. 20 continuing education workshop. The theme is, “Through the Glass, Darkly: Assessing Important Demographic and Attitudinal Trends and Trajectories of the Culture for the Church.” The session is 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Cost is $10, and includes a meal. For more information, contact the Office of Religious Life at 706-379-5166 or
Calvary UMC: Eagle scout honored for church project
     Senior Scout Nigel David Walker recently received a plaque from the church in honor of his Eagle Scout project completion, which was the top-to-bottom restoration of the church’s food bank room and a contribution of $300 to purchase food.  Walker enhanced the lighting, painted the ceiling and walls, refinished the floors and installed new shelving. His job met all Eagle Scout specifications and the work done on the food bank was approved by the Fulton County Health Department. 
     Throughout his project, Walker raised awareness of the need and services provided by Calvary's food bank throughout the community and in his troop (Troop 197, North Atlanta District, Atlanta Area Council). He also hosted a food drive, collecting hundreds of pounds of food. 
     “The Food Bank has been an important ministry for the community that Calvary serves for many years.  And the need is greater now than it has ever been.  This project couldn't have come at a better time,” said food bank coordinator Hatti Jackson.
  Retreat added to district confirmation calendar
     A fall Confirmation Retreat has been set for Oct. 7-9, and is available for groups of all sizes. Chaperones of the same gender must register at the ratio of one adult to six youth. Cost is $125 per person due upon registration. The fall retreat is in addition to the annual February gathering.
     “Pieces” is the theme for the weekends as we look at the pieces that come together in our journeys of faith as United Methodists, focusing on Romans 12:4-5. Worship, learning, fun and fellowship, as well as small and large group experiences, will be components of the weekend as we discover our part in the Body of Christ, experience some of the history of the Christian heritage, and celebrate the diversity and the connection that makes us who we are as United Methodists.
      The confirmation retreats, designed for 6th-8th graders, can include senior high youth not yet confirmed. To register, visit
Bridges: Volunteers needed for Uganda work team
     The next BridgeVolunteers are needed for the next Uganda Bridge mission trip. The team will be working to build a girls dormitory for the Humble Place School. Applications are due by Oct. 15 and the trip will be March 3-13, 2012. The total cost, including airfare, lodging, and most meals is $2000. For more information or to request an application, email Rev. Dalton Rushing at
Harmony Grove UMC: Evening of dining, entertainment
      Reservations are due Oct. 9 for the church’s 4th annual Talent Show and Dinner, set for 6 p.m. Oct. 16. Adults $10, children $5. Includes meal, salad, drink, dessert and entertainment. The church is in Lilburn at 50 Harmony Grove Rd. 770-921-7747.
Conference to focus on European missions
     The Eastern Europe and Balkans Consultation VII will be held in Alton, IL October 27 - 29. The purpose of the conference is to inspire and encourage the commitment for mission and ministry through partnerships with the region, to strengthen relationships with others involved in ministry there, to help shape future missions, and to provide opportunities for new churches to become involved. The conference will include workshops, reports from key ministry members, and networking opportunities. To register, visit and click on In Mission Together Consultation to download the registration brochure. For more information, contact Dick Arnold at (540) 961-1265 or at
Mt. Zion UMC: Craft show tradition continues
     The 26th annual event is set for 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Nov. 11-12 at the Marietta church at 1770 Johnson Ferry Road.  The show features 52 arts and crafts vendors, silent auction, door prize, bake sale, casserole pool, (Saturday only), quilt drawing, pictures with the REAL SANTA,  and fresh baked apple pies and cookies prepared throughout the show.  The show is sponsored by the Mt. Zion United Methodist Women. All proceeds benefit local and church charities.  There is no charge for admission.  For information, call 770-971-1465 or visit

Faith-based TV station featuring churches
     The Atlanta Interfaith Broadcasting (AIB) is featuring churches in a special program called “Faith Community of the Month,” consistent with the station’s mission to enhance the spiritual, intellectual and social well-being of viewers by delivering exceptional faith-based, educational and community programming to more than 19 counties. 
      The station is asking for churches to provide a 30 minute program that will air at 8:30 p.m. Sunday night as well as four weekend primetime airings, a 30-second promo, inclusion in the monthly eNewsletter and website. For details, contact Swain Watters, director of AIB business-to-business, at  
Fall brings festivals, pumpkins
     Christ UMC: The 2011 Fall Festival will take place 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Oct. 8, with rain date Oct. 22. Featuring food, music by the church’s jazz band, pony rides and petting zoo and pet adoptions. Mother Goose storyteller, moonwalk, clown and pumpkin carving contest. More than 3,000 pumpkins available for purchase. The church is in Roswell at 1340 Woodstock Rd. 770-993-3945.
      Harmony Grove UMC: Offering the “Best Barbecue in the South” at the Lilburn Daze Festival at 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Oct. 8. The festival will be held at Lilburn City Park. David Rigby will cook Boston butt pork in his famous cookers; the Harmony Grove booth will be selling sandwiches and barbecue by the pound. For more information, call the church at (770) 921 - 7747.
Dunwoody UMC: Show will feature Broadway songs
Broadway, Baby! – a Tony Award winning journey with show stopping songs from Annie, Wicked, Grease, Cats, Anything Goes and many more.  Presented 7 p.m. Oct. 21-22 and 3 p.m. Oct. 23.  Tickets $10 at the door ONLY.  Dunwoody United Methodist Church, 1548 Mount Vernon Road, 770-394-0675.
Reformation Day Celebrates Luther’s Role in King James Bible
     Emory University’s Candler School of Theology celebrates the 400th anniversary of the publication of the King James Bible and welcomes Jürgen Moltmann, one of the world’s most prominent theologians, to campus for its 24th annual Reformation Day celebration Oct. 27.
     An address by celebrated theologian Moltmann highlights this year’s daylong festivities, themed “Luther and the Translation of the Bible.” Emory’s Reformation Day marks Richard and Martha Kessler’s 1987 donation of their private collection of Reformation imprints and manuscripts to Candler’s Pitts Theology Library. The Richard C. Kessler Reformation Collection contains more than 3,500 Reformation-themed items and is home to more than 1,000 pieces written by Martin Luther himself. No other American library has more.
      All events are free and open to the public. For more information about Candler’s Reformation Day celebration and to see the full schedule, visit
     Read the complete story at

Bishop designates special day to support Action Ministries
      A special offering will be taken for Action Ministries on Nov. 13, named by Bishop Michael Watson as Action Ministries Sunday in the North Georgia Conference. The Rev. John R. Moeller, Jr., is the new president of the agency, which has six locations and 34 transitional housing sites across Georgia. Action Ministries works to address hunger, housing and educational issues facing people in need.
     Or details on activities planned for that day, visit and find the Facebook page at
Lithia Springs UMC: Preparations underway for live nativity
     A drive -through Nativity will be presented 7-9 p.m. Dec. 2-4. The church is at 3711 Temple St. across the tracks in downtown Lithia Springs. From the comfort of your car, drive through 11 beautifully painted scenes with hundreds of actors in period costumes, music and live animals depicting from the annunciation to the birth of Christ. For more information or to participate, call Margaret Arnold at 770-943-3820 or e-mail
 Insurance plan offers way to save money
     Save $250 or $500 on your 2012 medical plan deductible when you and your spouse in HealthFlex active plan both take the 2011 HealthQuotient.  You must take the HealthQuotient between August 1 and September 30 to avoid the higher 2012 deductible.  Please note, taking the HealthQuotient before August 1 will not count toward lowering your 2012 deductible.  Taking the HealthQuotient in August or September allows time for your Blueprint for Wellness screening results to be confidentially imported into the HealthQuotient for your convenience.  For more information, please contact Karen Fullerton via e-mail at