Posts by Category: News

This is the category for Advocate news and feature articles.

News March 20, 2017 posted by

AC2017: ‘We walk by faith, not by sight’

By Jessica Brodie. In two months, United Methodist laity and clergy will gather for an annual conference that is not only in a new city but also features a host of new offerings.

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AC2017: ‘We walk by faith, not by sight’
Photo by Matt Brodie. Bishop Jonathan Holston will preach opening worship at this year’s Annual Conference, set for June 4-7 in Greenville.
News March 20, 2017 posted by

New health plans on the horizon

By Jessica Brodie. United Methodist pastors and lay employees have a big change on the horizon when it comes to health insurance, but conference leaders are hoping the change will bring more choice and more affordability overall.

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New health plans on the horizon
Photo by Jessica Brodie
News March 20, 2017 posted by

Arson suspected after fire destroys tents at historic UMC campground

By Jessica Brodie. A late-night fire destroyed more than a dozen rustic cabins at a historic religious campground March 10, many of them belonging to United Methodists. Investigators are still working to determine a cause of the blaze that claimed 15 cabins—known as “tents”—at Cattle Creek Campground, located in a rural stretch between Bowman and Branchville in the Orangeburg District.

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Arson suspected after fire destroys tents at historic UMC campground
Photo courtesy of Larry Hardy/(Orangeburg) Times & Democrat. A late-night fire destroyed 15 rustic cabins, known as “tents,” at the historic Cattle Creek Campground in the Orangeburg District March 10.
News March 20, 2017 posted by

AC2017 to vote on five UMC constitutional amendments

By Jessica Brodie. Five constitutional amendments that came out of General Conference 2016 will go before the South Carolina Annual Conference in June for a vote.

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AC2017 to vote on five UMC constitutional amendments
Photo by Matt Brodie. Two of South Carolina’s delegates to General Conference 2016, the Rev. Mel Arant and Michael Cheatham, listen during proceedings. Among other legislation, General Conference passed five constitutional amendments, which now must be voted on by all annual and central conferences. South Carolina’s Annual Conference will vote June 4-7.
News February 23, 2017 posted by

Stronger than ever: Advent UMC rallies after fire

By Jessica Brodie. Advent United Methodist Church is recovering this month after a fire Feb. 8 destroyed its sanctuary. No one was injured in the blaze, which happened around lunchtime that day after construction crews renovating the structure reportedly sparked a small fire while cutting steel. Now, church leaders are doing their best to carry on, armed with prayer and a commitment to perseverance. “The building burned, but the church is still here, and we’re moving forward,” said the Rev. Michael Turner, Advent’s senior pastor. “We believe we’ll be stronger than ever.”

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Stronger than ever: Advent UMC rallies after fire
Advent pastor the Rev. Michael Turner said one powerful sign of God’s providence and grace was illuminated through the large wooden cross that had been hanging in their sanctuary. While most of the roof was destroyed, the cross remained. It is now misshapen and some of wood has cracked and it reeks of smoke, but it remained nonetheless. The fact that the cross survived is a sign God is going to do what He has done in the past, Turner said: bring new life and order out of chaos and destruction. Photo by Matt Brodie.
News February 23, 2017 posted by

Men rooted in Christ

By Jessica Brodie. One thousand South Carolina men spent three days rooting themselves in the Lord. And at the end of it all, they emerged transformed, fired up and ready to take the church in a bold new direction.

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Men rooted in Christ
A man prays at the altar during the South Carolina Conference United Methodist Men’s spiritual retreat. One thousand men spent three days at the retreat rooting themselves in the Lord. Photo by Matt Brodie.
News February 23, 2017 posted by

Breaking the cycle: UMCs urged to give $100 apiece to build homes for the homeless

By Jessica Brodie. A home, where before there was none. A way out and a step up, when before there was only the endless, debilitating cycle of poverty. And all thanks to a new conference-wide mission project called simply the Homeless Initiative.

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Breaking the cycle: UMCs urged to give $100 apiece to build homes for the homeless
Four churches in the Greenville District have already agreed to sponsor one home apiece for the Homeless Initiative: Buncombe Street UMC, Greenville; Covenant UMC, Greer; Advent UMC, Simpsonville; and Mauldin UMC, Mauldin. The conference is hoping every other UMC throughout South Carolina will donate $100 apiece so two or three more homes can be built. Here, during the Feb. 4 Bishop’s Forward Focus Tour, Buncombe Street UMC gives a $39,000 check to Bishop Jonathan Holston for one of the homes. Buncombe Street members raised the money through their 2016 Advent Offering. Pictured are the Rev. Jerry Hill, Buncombe Street minister of missions and outreach; Dr. Bob Howell, senior pastor; the Rev. George Howell, Greenville District superintendent; and Holston.
News February 23, 2017 posted by

Pastors explore how to preach to confront racism 70 years after S.C.’s last lynching

By Jessica Brodie. Seventy years after South Carolina’s last known lynching, a crowd gathered to remember the tragedy and share thoughts about what the church can do today to confront the sin of racism. Retired Bishop Will Willimon, South Carolina Resident Bishop Jonathan Holston, scholar Will Gravely and a host of United Methodist pastors were among a handful who shared thoughts with the packed Leonard Auditorium at Wofford College Feb. 17 in “Who Lynched Willie Earle? Preaching to Confront Racism.”

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Pastors explore how to preach to confront racism 70 years after S.C.’s last lynching
Photo by Jessica Brodie
News February 23, 2017 posted by

UMCSC Hispanic/Latino Task Force condemns immigration ban

By Jessica Brodie. While the legalities of President Donald Trump’s immigration ban remain unclear, the Hispanic/Latino Task Force of the South Carolina Conference of The United Methodist Church is calling on Christians to condemn the ban and advocate for immigrants and refugees.

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UMCSC Hispanic/Latino Task Force condemns immigration ban
At Thurgood Marshall Baltimore Washington International Airport, published reports state that 2,000 people gathered outside the international arrivals area to rally against the president’s executive order banning refugees. Photo by Erik Alsgarrd, Baltimore-Washington Conference.
News February 23, 2017 posted by

Youth bike initiative picks up speed

By Jessica Brodie. Across South Carolina, United Methodist youth are ramping up their collection of new and gently used bikes for the conference’s Annual Conference Bike Initiative.

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Youth bike initiative picks up speed
Val Kenney, youth worker at St. John’s UMC, Rock Hill, with some of the bikes his church’s youth have collected for the Annual Conference Bike Initiative.
News February 23, 2017 posted by

Race relations and the role of the church

By Jessica Brodie. When it comes to race relations, the church has a big role to play in leading the conversation and speaking out about what is right. That was the thrust behind a forum and panel discussion on “Race Relations and the Role of the Church: Then and Now,” held at Claflin University Jan. 28.

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Race relations and the role of the church
Photo by Matt Brodie
News February 23, 2017 posted by

Re-Purpose: Youth Revolution retreat draws 2,000 for worship, commitment to Christ

By Jessica Brodie. Two thousand screaming teenagers packed the Township Auditorium, nearly every one screaming “Jesus” at the top of their lungs. All around them, their peers were crying, laughing and singing, sometimes all three at once. A kaleidoscope of lights filled the hall and shot beams of color across the stage—red, green, blue and pink—while the pound of drums and thrum of bass blasted a wave of high-energy sound, urging the momentum higher and higher. They were gathered for Revolution…

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Re-Purpose: Youth Revolution retreat draws 2,000 for worship, commitment to Christ
Photo by Matt Brodie

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