You are on page 1of 7

The LaGrange Link

A monthly publication of
The LaGrange District of the United Methodist Church

Rev. Carol Cook,

District Superintendent

November 2015

Church Spotlight on North Fayette UMC

Due to changes in the makeup of our congregation, in 2013 the childrens
building at North Fayette UMC was being underutilized. Our once thriving
childrens program was only using three rooms for infants, toddlers, and
elementary age children. One wing had been turned over to the music
department, but still several rooms were either empty or being used for
storage. We needed a new ministry program to utilize this unused space.
As the population in all of our communities ages, care for the older members is a growing problem.
Many adults with memory impairment require around the clock supervision. Care can be expensive. So
in many cases this care must be provided by family members. This leaves little or no time for personal
needs such as doctor appointments, hair appointments, grocery shopping, or simply alone time for rest.
Day respite allows caregivers some free time to tend to their own personal needs.
After reviewing several options, our Administrative Council approved a recommendation by Cheryl
Maxfield and the Evangelism Committee to consider a day respite program for senior citizens, targeting
principally those suffering from some degree of dementia. During 2014 our committee of volunteers
visited and observed both commercial and not-for-profit respite programs. We decided to model the
ministry after Grace Arbor, the faith-based congregational respite ministry of First United Methodist
Church of Lawrenceville. However, a major consideration was insuring that the ministry would be selffunding because our budget was already stretched to the limit.
Participant fees would make the ministry self-funding after startup costs were covered by outside
contributions and grants. The District Church Development Fund provided a grant to replace the loose
carpet and hard tile with padded vinyl flooring. Grants from the Conference, the Board of Global
Ministries, and the local EMC covered printing, advertising, postage, and initial salaries.
By the beginning of 2015 Janet Collins, a recently retired ER nurse, was hired to
serve as director, Jan Warren-Rhoden was hired as assistant, and a corps of
dedicated volunteers was assembled. The recruitment of participants was slow,
but as we prepare to enter 2016, the ministry is approaching self-sufficiency and
continues to grow. In addition, we are working with Fayette County Senior

Services on a plan to bring members to Open Hearts once a week for an hour of music with our
Participants are on-site Tuesday and Friday from 10 until 2. During this time they share stories, play
games, exercise and have lunch. Their families enjoy having some time to tend to their own personal
needs. Families of participants have said that not only do they receive some respite time, but also their
loved ones return home happier and more emotionally stable after spending time with a group of their
peers. This ministry is a blessing to the participants, their families, and our church family. Our childrens
building is once again filled with music and laughter on weekdays!
Joe Harrington
Pastor, North Fayette UMC

Training for SPR Committee Members and

Finance Committee Members
Thursday, November 12, 2015
Fayetteville First UMC, 7:00-8:30pm
The District is sponsoring this special training event.
Rev. Carol Cook will lead a workshop for SPR (Staff Parish Relations) Committee
members and Denise Wilson will lead a financial workshop. Anyone who is coming
on to the SPR Committee in January of 2016 is strongly encouraged to attend this
workshop to learn the duties and responsibilities of the SPR Committee. New SPR
Chairpersons should also plan to attend. Any other SPR Committee members are
welcome. Anyone serving as a local church treasurer, financial secretary, or
finance committee chairperson is encouraged to attend the financial workshop to
learn about basic financial policies and procedures for the local church. These topics
will not be covered at the district training event in January so make plans to attend
now! Reservations are not needed.

Church Safety Program

On Tuesday, November 17 Sheriff Mike Yeager and the Coweta County Sheriffs
Office will be hosting a church security recommendations seminar. This is being
held in an effort to keep local churches safe places of sanctuary. Information
presented will help ensure that churches have a plan in place not just for threats,
but for safety and security in general. The workshop will be held at Cranford Hall of
the Coweta County Courthouse at 6:00pm and is free to the public.

The LaGrange District is working on a youth mission trip

to El Salvador March 31 April 1, 2016. This is spring for
Troup County Schools. Approximate cost of the trip is
$1300 which will include all transportation,
accommodations, and food. For more information,
please contact the district office or Rev. Chad Hill, who
will be leading the trip, at We are also in need of several
adult chaperones.
Youth Leadership Training Event YL2L (Youth Learning 2 Lead)
Please come and join us for a day of Fun, Learning & Fellowship as we Help to Equip
Youth Disciples in the area of Leadership. Pastors, Youth
Pastors, Youth Coordinators, Volunteer Youth Workers, if you
have youth:
Leading in any area of your church,
Leading on your Church Youth Council,
or if you want your youth group to meet other local youth,
please join us on Sunday, Nov. 29th, 2015, from 1pm-5pm at Cornerstone UMC
in Newnan for a Youth Leadership Training Event. We will also have a gathering
time for Youth Workers/Pastors to meet with other Youth workers for a time of
fellowship and conversation.
Some topics Youth will cover:
1) Senses - What your senses can tell you! How you use them to learn, teach, and
2) Brainstorming - How to use the collective power of other people to accomplish
the mission God has placed before you.
3) Practice - Leaders aren't born. You need a safe place to practice, learn from your
mistakes, and build your skill set/gifts.
4) Overcome - Overcoming challenges to live a lifestyle of leadership
In order to help with preparations, we would like for groups to register your
attendance. Within the next week there will be an online registration form on the
Children/Youth page of the district website ( Please
complete that registration or call the District Office to let us know how many from
your church will be attending. We would also ask that groups be prepared to make
a small contribution toward the purchase of snacks ($5).
Taressa Thompson & Rev. Shannon Karafanda will lead this Training. For more
information please contact Taressa ( or 706-6687307 or Rev. Shannon - or 770-3049397.

Youth Delegates to Annual Conference

Each district is required to send 4 youth delegates (aged 14-18) to Annual
Conference in Athens June 7-9, 2016. If you have youth in your church who may
be interested in this, please have them submit an application to the District Office
by January 8, 2016. Each application must be accompanied by a letter of
recommendation from the pastor. Applications can be downloaded from the district
website ( on the Children & Youth page or can be
obtained from the District Office by emailing Denise at . This
is a great experience for youth! The district will pay for accommodations and food.
Conference-wide Young Adult Retreat
Last year's young adult retreat was a great opportunity to begin connecting 18 to
39 year olds in our conference, and this November 20-22 we will once again ascend
to the mountains of North Georgia where young adults from all around can be
renewed through great worship, wonderful fellowship, vibrant preaching, excellent
food, the beauty of Glisson, and the refreshing presence of God's Spirit. The cost
for the weekend is $125 or $70 for Saturday only. Register at

Healthflex Open Enrollment

November 4-19, 2015
All clergy and lay covered by conference health insurance
must make elections for insurance coverage for 2016.
Go to

The LaGrange District is preparing for our next team to go

to El Salvador, February 13-20, 2016. All churches in the
district can be a part of this mission by contributing $100
towards the cost of construction and food distribution
projects. Send checks to the LaGrange District Office. In
addition to project costs, churches are also encouraged to contribute to a fund to
help the church in El Salvador purchase land for a new school. Please mark those
donations as property fund.
The LaGrange District mission team in conjunction with West Point First UMC is
holding a bowling fundraiser to raise money for the February and March mission
trips. Team members (And anyone who wants to come just to have fun) will be
bowling on the afternoon of December 6th (Exact time still to be determined) at the
Valley Bowl lanes in Valley Alabama. If you would like to support either the
February Adult team or the March Youth team, please send your donations to the
District Office. Or if you'd like to come and join us for fun and fellowship look for
details in next month's newsletter.

Early Response Teams Needed in South Carolina

Hotline Established by South Carolina Conference

The South Carolina Conference has set up a Hotline for ERT Teams to respond to flooding and have
extended an invitation for North Georgia ERT teams. If an ERT Team from your church is available,
please call 1-800-390-4911. Then, let the North Georgia Conference know by
emailing Cindy and JR Campbell are coordinating among North
Georgia teams. If you are a trained ERT and would like to join a team please email the above
address. There may be opportunities for one or two individuals to join another North Georgia Team.
All volunteers must be ERT trained at this phase of response.

Responding to Flood and Storm Damage in South

Carolina and The Bahamas
Please join us in praying for all affected by flooding and storm damage -- including our neighbors in
South Carolina, some here in North Georgia, and our Bridges partners in The Bahamas.
Those wanting to give to relief efforts can do so through any North Georgia United Methodist
Church. Be sure to clearly mark gifts with North Georgia Conference Fund Numbers:

South Carolina: "4390 - South Carolina Flooding."

Bahamas: "8430 - Bahamas Storm Response."

Churches or individuals can send checks made out to the North Georgia Conference and marked
appropriately to: Conference Treasurer's Office, PO Box 102417, Atlanta, GA 30368-2417.
- See more at:

UM Childrens Home Needs Your Help with Christmas Wish List

The holidays are right around the corner and the United Methodist Children's Home
needs your help to make Christmas a special time for the 80 children in their foster care
program and another 70 residents on the Children's Home campus. There are two ways
to help. You can donate gifts from the general Wish List below OR contact
the Christmas Coordinator to sponsor a child over age 8 or a family living on campus.
All gifts are due to the United Methodist Childrens Home in Decatur by Monday, Dec.
7. Donations can be delivered to the main office Monday-Friday from 8:30 a.m. 5 p.m.
or Sunday, Dec. 6, from 1-5 p.m. Please only donate new items. Read more and
download the Wish List at - See more at:

District Church Development Committee meets November 17

Any church that is planning to buy or sell property, begin new
construction or significant remodeling must first obtain approval from this
committee. If your church needs to meet with this committee, please
notify the district office no later than November 10.

Thank you and apologies to Powell Chapel UMC who did pay 100% of their
2014 conference apportionments. Due to a clerical error they did not receive a
certificate at their recent Charge Conference. We apologize for the oversight!

District Training Event

Sunday, January 31, 2016
Newnan First UMC
Details of workshops being offered will be in next months
newsletter and on the district website very soon!
Mark your calendar now!

Happy Birthday to the following ministers celebrating

birthdays in November:
10 Dan Dixon
14 David Campbell
Tommy Holder
15 Mary Ruth Davidson
17 Julian Warner

18 Palmer Boykin
20 Lonnie Thornton
25 Kerry Wright
26 Sean Robinson
29 Chad Hill

Nov. 5 District Board of Laity/Connectional Ministries Meeting, Warren

Temple UMC, 6:30pm
Nov. 7 Conference Sexual Ethics Training, Conference Center, 9-3
Nov. 10 Cabinet Meeting
Nov. 12 SPR/Finance Training, Fayetteville 1st, 7pm
Nov. 16 District Strategic Growth Committee meeting
Nov. 17 District Church Development Committee, District Office, 6:30pm
Nov. 25-27 District Office closed for holidays
Nov. 29 YL2L youth event, Cornerstone UMC, 1-5pm
Nov. 29 District Mission Team meeting, 5:00
Dec. 7 Clergy Fellowship with DS, LaGrange Cracker Barrel, 12 noon

Please visit our district website at

where you will find

even more information about district

and conference activities. And Like us
on Facebook! (The LaGrange District)
You are welcome to post videos or information about
events at your church on our Facebook page.