Hurricane Ida Relief Efforts
Currently, we are supporting the recovery efforts in Louisiana by asking people to make a contribution to UMCOR US Disaster Response and Recovery, Advance number 901670 (monetary donations can also be given directly to the Louisiana Conference by texting ‘relief’ to (800) 500-5858).

You can best support Hurricane Ida relief efforts through monetary donations to UMCOR or the Louisiana Conference as areas impacted by the hurricane have no infrastructure in place to support donations of physical items such as bottled water or clothing.

Local authorities are asking people to stay off the roads as rescue and recovery efforts are continuing and first responders need access to those hard-hit areas. At this time, the Louisiana Conference is completing damage assessments to help determine what the need is and how other Conferences can support those efforts.
It is likely that there will be great need in the near future, and the recovery efforts will last years, so once those needs are communicated to us, we will be sharing that with our churches.

Afghan Resettlement
We are currently in contact with local partners who will be working with those displaced from Afghanistan. Afghan immigrants coming into the area are still at the military bases and are currently not permitted to live with U.S. citizens. Future needs will include assistance with finding an apartment, furniture, etc. More information on how you can help will be forthcoming.









Haiti Earthquake
Thank you for your support of relief efforts in Haiti following the 7.2 magnitude earthquake that struck Haiti on August 14, 2021. View the latest update on the FLUMC humanitarian response including photos here.

The current need is still financial support through donations made by visiting https://florida-reg.brtapp.com/FLUMCHaitiHumanitarianResponse. We can support our partners and the VERY long recovery ahead.


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RUMC's 175 Plan
The Trustees are leading the way in getting the buildings and grounds updated and spruced up in time for our 175th Anniversary celebration this fall. This is a comprehensive wish list of the various projects that we may tackle this summer.

  • Sanctuary—Pressure clean the building; touch up the carpentry under the windows, paint the outside, and upgrade the shrubbery.

  • Crichton Fellowship Hall—Fix the sagging wall (possibly covered by insurance), pressure clean and paint the building.

  • Nursery/Music Room Building—Carpentry on the front windows, paint the building, upgrade the shrubbery, and touch up the flame and cross logo on the front of the building.

  • Classroom/RESTORE Building—Pressure Clean and paint the building, replace metal pole.

  • Youth Building—This building is nearing the completion of its repair from its recent truck accident. We plan on adding laminate floors, and possible adding accent paint to the interior.

  • The RESTORE Store Building—Replace rotten exterior wood, add vent boards to the back of the building, pressure wash and paint the building.

  • Other Possible Repairs—Pressure clean the sidewalks, plug grass throughout the front lawn, brush and paint railings, rebuild the gazebo.

If you have a special talent, or want to participate in some of these efforts, contact Gary Floyd. There is work at RUMC for everyone.
Life Line Screening Returns October 27th
Life Line Screening, the nation’s leading provider of preventive health screenings, will offer affordable, non-invasive and painless health screenings at Riverview United Methodist Church on Wednesday, October 27, 2021.

A package of five screenings to identify risk for stroke, heart disease and other chronic conditions will be offered:

  • Carotid artery ultrasound to identify plaque buildup in the carotid arteries, a major risk factor for stroke
  • Abdominal aortic aneurysm ultrasound to identify presence of an enlargement in the largest blood vessel in the body
  • An EKG to identify the presence of atrial fibrillation, which increases the risk for stroke
  • Ultrasound of the lower legs to look for plaque buildup known as peripheral artery disease
  • Ultrasound of the shin bone to identify risk for osteoporosis

These 5 vital screenings are offered for only $149 and take 60-90 minutes to complete. If you register today, you will receive a $10 discount.

Register by calling toll free 1-888-653-6441 or text the word "circle" to 797979.

A Word on the 2022 General Conference
We are about one year away from the currently-planned, postponed General Conference scheduled to meet in Minneapolis, MN from late August through early September of 2022. My fellow interim co-DS, Sharon Austin and I are both delegates to that meeting. We are very aware that there is no guarantee that the General Conference will be able to meet in 2022 given the ongoing pandemic, but we are hopeful that there may be a way for the church to convene a General Conference to address the many issues before our denomination.

The most prominent issues before the Church are the consideration of the Protocol of Reconciliation and Grace through Separation that preserves the United Methodist Church but also allows for those who wish a more homogenous, traditionalist or progressive expression of the church to leave gracefully with their properties and pensions. Another piece of legislation is the Christmas Covenant, which affirms connectional relationships rooted in mission, respect for contextual ministry settings and legislative equality for regional bodies of the church. But while Sharon and I both support these pieces of legislation in principle, we are aware from watching General Conferences over the years that there is no guarantee these pieces of legislation as originally written will be adopted by the delegates.

As I have visited churches across the District and talked with pastors and lay leaders there are a lot of questions about how to handle the possible decisions that churches may face. So here are some thoughts about the healthiest ways to wade into these conversations:

  • Pray for the United Methodist Church. During this time of discernment and decision-making, the prayers for all involved are an important part of helping us all place before God our church and its future.
  • Growing Disciples of Jesus remains the Most Important Part of our Work. It is our purpose, and it is for the transformation of the world.
  • Treat one another with respect and love. The prevailing issue of the church's stand on human sexuality isn't just an issue we debate. This is about the lives of LGBTQ people in our churches, in our families, in our neighborhoods. I have been in meetings where derisive, mean-spirited things were said about people in the room and about people perceived to have a differing view. It was reported that a leader of the Wesleyan Covenant Association had tomatoes thrown at his car when he was inside the church making a presentation. In the UMC baptismal vow, we acknowledge that we are a community of love and forgiveness. May that be paramount as we wade into these waters.
  • Take your time. Some are wanting to rush these decisions but that would be unwise. We don't know what legislation will pass yet and having the implications clearly defined will be important before any decisions are made.
  • No vote by your church may be needed. The current Protocol legislation allows churches who wish to remain in the continuing United Methodist Church to do so without a vote if the Florida Conference remains as well. We have been a big tent denomination for a long time and while some of our friends may leave, the continuing United Methodist Church will likely remain with a (slightly-less) broad theological spectrum.
  • Be wary of scare tactics. There are some who are trying to say that traditionalists will be victims of a witch-hunt to punish them for their views. Look carefully at the appointments that have been made over the last couple of years and I think you will see the tremendous respect represented in the way that pastors of all theological views were appointed to churches that match who they are. That is what makes for a healthy appointive process. The Bishop and Cabinet would want to continue that, and I am proud of our work.
  • Encourage an open process at your church. It is not healthy for a small group of people to go off and meet with the WCA or those advocating for the continuing UMC in secret and not invite everyone to those meetings. When that happens, the process lacks integrity and angers the ones not invited. One side of the story gets told without allowing for healthy dialogue. If people are invited to make presentations on the various options, make sure everyone is invited and video tape their presentations to put up on your webpage for everyone to access. Don't allow anonymous leafleting to be handed out nor placed on car windshields, nor emailed. These kinds of anonymous practices don’t give opportunity for critical dialogue about the issues. They are simply propaganda organized by people with an ax to grind.
  • Make sure all the sides are represented. When a blog article was written by Good News (a traditionalist group), Adam Hamilton (a moderate) responded thoughtfully countering some of the claims that were made. Our own Dan Johnson, the former chair of the Board of Asbury Theological Seminary in Wilmore, KY, responded to Maxie Dunham, former President of Asbury, and they had a healthy dialogue, despite their differing views, via their open letters. Help your leaders get exposure to these and other resources.
  • Keep us in the loop. There is no need to start these conversations right away, given the fact that there are likely years before your church will have to decide. But if your church is starting these conversations, please keep Sharon, Emily and I informed so we can help you access resources and answer questions.

May God's grace surround all our efforts toward a fresh ecclesiology in these months and years to come.

Grace and peace,
Rev. Clarke Campbell-Evans
Interim District Superintendent
Gulf-Central District

Rev. Clarke Campbell-Evans,
Interim Gulf Central District Superintendent
Prayer in Remembrance of 9/11/2001
By Rev. Lisa Ann Moss Degrenia

We come together with persons all over the world to remember the day our world changed. We come together in faith, in hope, in God’s infinite love.

Heavenly Father, we commend to your mercy and grace all who died in the September eleventh attacks and all who have died in the past twenty years while laboring to end terrorism.

In New York City: 2,342 persons
In Arlington, Virginia: 184 persons
In Shanksville, Pennsylvania: 40 persons.  411 New York City rescue workers that day plus so many more from the aftereffects.  Thousands of military personnel and civilians in the following years of war

Over 70 countries lost loved ones that day: family members, friends, co-workers, neighbors, heroes. In the face of all this loss we claim your grace, your faithfulness, and your power to bring good out of evil.

Compassionate One, it’s been twenty years, yet the pain is fresh and the need is great. Comfort all who continue to mourn the loss of loved ones. Come with assurance and peace for all who remain traumatized, anxious, or fearful for the future. Come with protection and freedom for all who continue to live in the midst of hostility and oppression. 

Bring wholeness and hope to every broken place- to broken bodies, broken hearts, and broken spirits. To broken relationships, broken systems, and broken faith.

Draw together leaders of every nation. Give them ears to hear your wisdom and the courage to respond. Inspire them to work together for peace, justice, and freedom. Inspire us, too. 

Strengthen all who risk their lives to protect others. Guard and favor all who work to make your world a place of peace. Guard and guide us, too. 

God of the Nations, hear our prayer for our enemies and for ourselves. Help us love and pray for those who hate us. We claim your abiding, your humility, and your strength as we strive to fulfill this call.

Save us from revenge, false teaching, and blind suspicion. Help us recognize our contributions to conflict. Help us understand the hurt that feeds the hate.

Change the hearts of all who seek their way by evil and violent means, by coercion and corruption and privilege, including our own. Create in us clean hearts that beat with your unconditional compassion.

Leave no one in the shadows of evil and death, O God.  Fill us all with your light and make us all instruments of your peace.

Our world remains a dangerous place, O God, but with you there is shalom and hope. With you there is persevering and purpose. You are our Rock, our Shield, our Defender forever.  Amen.