Annual Conference 2017 was filled with reminders of what it means to be Free Methodist and why we embrace the Freedoms that are deeply embedded in our “theology of love.” It was also an opportunity for ministry partners and old friends to connect, share stories, and remind each other that it truly is “good to belong.”
Starting with the beautiful instrumental worship of saxophonist Andre Paganelli and continuing throughout the day with worship that crossed styles from Coldplay to R&B, attendees were blessed with deeply spiritual moments of praise and reminders of God’s goodness.
Five Freedoms Sessions
The Five Freedoms of the Free Methodist Church were highlighted as leaders from across the conference shared their stories of pushing past boundaries, understanding biases, and making hard decisions in the midst of a culture that encourages us to take the easy path. From community clinics to community gardens, attendees were encouraged to imagine how God could use them in their community to bring freedom and cross cultural boundaries that have impeded our ability to bring the Gospel to people who need Christ.
Over a dozen new elders were ordained for service within the churches and ministries of the Free Methodist Church in Southern California and OASIS conferences during the evening ordination service. Men and women from diverse cultural, ethnic, and language groups all joined together to take on the call to serve the church and follow God’s lead.
Before the ordinands were confirmed, Bishop Matthew Thomas shared a message that challenged all attendees to consider the cost of following Christ and bringing hope and peace to a world that threatens our comfort, communities, and sometimes our very lives. He called all to be peacemakers and encouraged the ordinands to follow the lead of Christ as they seek to bring peace.
Ways to Get Connected
Did you miss out on the opportunity to connect with our Ministry Partners at Annual Conference? Take a moment to check out their information below and be inspired by the incredible work they’re doing at home and around the world.
The Free Methodist Foundation offers many resources that can support your stewardship. These are offered through the three centers of expertise within the Foundation which are GuideStream Financial, the Investment & Loan Fund and Estate and Gift Planning.
International Child Care Ministries is a child sponsorship initiative serving 20,000 children in over 30 countries. Through education, meals, clothing, and basic medical care, children in need have an opportunity for a better life.
Empowering Lives International focuses on providing accessible and appropriate knowledge – delivered in a cost-effective and appropriate manner – which holds the greatest amount of long-term economic and relational impact among the needy.
The Black Sheep ministry exists to introduce Jesus Christ to the world of motorcycle riders, for the purpose of making more and better disciples through the ministry of the local church.
Fighting poverty in 17 countries around the world, Heavenly Treasures seeks to see people find hope and self sufficiency through handicraft projects.
Andre Paganelli is a Grammy nominated Brazilian smooth jazz and adult contemporary saxophonist, author, writer, composer, and arranger.