Dear Floris Family,

Many in our church have experienced the United Methodist Church at Floris through its ministry but have not experienced our larger connection as a denomination. The UMC is in over 60 countries around the globe. I mentioned a few weeks ago that next month I will lead our delegation from Virginia to our General Conference. This conference has almost 1,000 delegates from around the world, meets once every four years and will focus this year on proposals for restructuring our general boards, our Council of Bishops, raising up young clergy to lead our church in the future and a host of other issues. I believe they are important in laying the groundwork for a future with hope for our denomination.

I recently signed a letter, along with other pastors of the 100 largest United Methodist Churches and many clergy and lay leaders across our connection, urging the General Conference to approve the essential ideas in the proposals. If you’d like, you may read the letter and sign the petition. Once there you’ll find a couple of other links to find out more about the legislation. I invite you to pray for the United Methodist Church in the days prior to the General Conference, which will begin on April 24, 2012. You may also find a daily devotional related to General Conference.

Shaun Casey and I will be holding a 2nd General Conference Briefing on Wednesday, April 11 at 7:30 PM. You may want to attend to hear about the legislation that will come before the conference.

Thanks

On Sunday I shared the need to open another Connection Point desk on the second floor as well as having volunteers on the first floor to assist visitors to our church who are working to find Sunday School classrooms and the Sanctuary. Having volunteers to welcome visitors and assist them is a great act of hospitality. This is one of our values at Floris, and I was very encouraged when 11 of you signed up to help after only one announcement. If you would be willing to assist but have not yet volunteered, you can sign up here.

New Student Ministries Director

Please help me welcome our new Student Ministries Director, Jeremy Glovitch. Jeremy comes to Floris with more than 15 years of experience in student ministry. He and his wife Michele and their three children are moving to Virginia from Ohio this week and Jeremy will begin working here on April 1. To find out more about how we are welcoming Jeremy to Floris, please read the letterthat Tim Ward, Director of Grow Ministries, sent to parents of students announcing Jeremy’s hiring.

Family Easter Festival

Don’t forget to join us for the Family Easter Festival this Saturday from 3 to 5 PM. This year’s festival is for children of all ages. We are looking forward to welcoming Floris members and guests for a great day of family fun, so be sure to invite your neighbors and friends. If you would like to help make this event a success, please sign up to volunteer for the festival.

Easter Sunday Parking

Please join me in providing our Easter guests the warm and inviting hospitality Floris is known for by prayerfully considering attending an alternate service or parking off-site on Easter Sunday. Visit our website for details about Easter Sunday Parking. Welcome a visitor, park off-site!

Grace Ministries Food Drive and Special April Schedule

Thank you to those of you who donated food to our second Grace Ministries food drive on Sunday, March 18. More than 700 food items were collected to provide to low income families in April. Based on the success of these drives, we plan to have another food drive this summer and again in the winter.

Due to Floris’ Holy Week activities, we have an altered Grace Ministries schedule on both Friday, April 6 and Saturday, April 7 for our monthly food and clothing distribution. If you are interested in volunteering, you can sign up here. For those of you that donate seasonally appropriate clothing and children’s books for each month’s distribution, you can drop them off at the church on Friday, April 6 from 3 to 5 PM in the Fellowship Hall. If you have any questions, please contact Courtney Brown.

Easter Basket Return

Each year our congregation provides Easter Baskets to children living in homeless shelters and transitional housing. This past Sunday we collected 600 baskets for children who otherwise will not have an Easter Basket this year. Thank you for your overwhelming response.

Thank You from Beaupre Family

We recently received this note of thanks from Jim and Cookie Beaupre:

Our family would like to thank everyone for supporting theMarch 3rd memorial service for our son, Jeff. There were over four hours between the beginning of the service and when the last of the people left the reception. During this long period, Floris people were right there supporting us. The cooperation with Old Bridge United Methodist Church andReverend Burton Robinson was just heartwarming. We were truly amazed at the marshaling of support at the last minute. There were over 650 people in attendance at the service and many people came back to us with “what a perfect service” and “what a wonderful church you attend”. These remarks were verycomforting during a very difficult time. Thank you all again.

Your brother and sister in Christ,

Jim and Cookie Beaupre

Family Seder Dinner Canceled

We have had to cancel the Family Seder Dinner scheduled for next Wednesday due to limited sign-ups. We look forward to seeing you at our other Holy Week services and activities.

This Week in Worship

Join us as we continue our Lenten Series on the Lord’s Prayer, Walk Humbly with God. This week we will consider The Power and the Glory. Scripture: John 12:20-33.

In Christ,
– Tom

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