(Stegall Seminary Scholarship Endowment Foundation) - In September 2013, Dr. Karl K. Stegall dared to write of a bold vision. He said in the Foundation’s quarterly brochure, “With your great encouragement and generosity, I am now dreaming of the day, in the not too distant future, when we might be able to provide a minimum of $10,000 as a cash scholarship for each full-time student, sharply decreasing what they have to borrow.” As donors read those words, God was already making a way for that spoken dream to become a reality.
On December 3, 2013 the Board of Directors of the Stegall Seminary Scholarship Endowment Foundation announced that his dream has been realized. Effective January 1, 2014, all full-time seminary students living on campus (or commuting on a weekly basis) will now receive a minimum of $10,000 per year from the Foundation. Full-time students currently receive an annual scholarship minimum of $6,000.
“This marks a milestone in the progress of the Foundation,” said Stegall. In its earliest years, the Foundation awarded $100 per month or $1,200 per year to students. The announcement of reaching the $10,000 annual level is a watershed moment in the history of the Foundation. One such student who wishes to thank Foundation donors is Duke Divinity School student Ashley Douglas.
“Three years ago, when I was accepted into Duke Divinity School, I had no idea how I would financially support my educational needs to follow God’s call,” she said. “I followed in faith and prayed without ceasing and God has answered those prayers through the Stegall Foundation. Thank you, donors, for supporting students just like me.”
“Seminary is a challenging time in many ways,” said Dr. Nathan Attwood, a Foundation scholarship alumnus now serving in the Alabama-West Florida Conference. “Young families and young marriages are stretched by tremendous demands and financial constraints. The idealism of new ministers encounters the reality of the joys and stresses of congregational leadership. The Stegall Foundation does more than make the financial pressures manageable, as incredibly important as that is. The scholarship allows new clergy families to know that they are not alone and that a community cares and will carry them through.”
“What a leap of faith the donors and board have taken,” said Stegall. “These gifts enable us to do more for the kingdom of God than has been possible up to this point. Past, present, and future seminary students, and their families, from across the bounds of our Alabama-West Florida Conference join me in expressing our deepest thanks to the countless souls who have prayerfully prepared us to reach this milestone.”
Please join us in our mission of preparing the future of the Church. This is an exciting time for the Stegall Foundation and we want you to be a part of it. Tax-deductible donations can be made securely online . To find out more about the Foundation, please read our newest Winter 2013-2014 brochure. Thank you for your continued prayers and support.
Changes to the clergy retirement plan are fast approaching. Have you taken the actions necessary to prepare?
The General Conference 2012 plan changes – which go into effect on Jan. 1, 2014 – will affect clergy in different ways. If you are in the Clergy Retirement Security Program (CRSP), you may need to start or increase your United Methodist Personal Investment Plan (UMPIP) contributions to ensure you earn matching contributions to the CRSP Defined Contribution plan. You may need to increase your UMPIP contributions even more to make up for CRSP Defined Benefit reductions. If you will no longer receive CRSP contributions, you may need to reevaluate your retirement plan and increase your personal contributions. And if you’re near retirement or are retired, you may even have a decision to make about whether to begin Ministerial Pension Plan (MPP) benefits by Dec. 1 so you can annuitize more than 65% of your account balance.
Now is the time to prepare for these changes. Make sure you:
1. Understand what benefits will be available to you as of Jan. 1, 2014, and what personal contributions, if any, you must make to earn those benefits.
2. Know the deadlines for making decisions about your benefits. (For instance, applications for benefit must be received by Nov. 27 to annuitize more than 65% of your MPP account.)
3. Adjust your retirement plan to account for the changes. You may need to increase your UMPIP contributions, reduce your living expenses, or both, to compensate for the changes.
The General Board offers planning assistance through its projection tools—the Retirement Readiness Tool or the Retirement Benefits Projection in Benefits Access (www.benefitsaccess.org)—and personal financial consulting at no charge from Ernst & Young Financial Planning Services.*
Learn more at www.gbophb.org/TimeforAction.
* Updates to the Benefits Access projection tools will not be complete until year end for less than full-time clergy who will no longer be covered under CRSP. Consult with a financial planner at Ernst & Young Financial Planning Services to help plan for the changes.
(Lake Junaluska, N.C/UMNS) Following the action of a retired bishop to conduct a same-gender ceremony in violation of church law, the United Methodist Council of Bishops took a series of actions to address the issue during their annual meeting this week in Lake Junaluska, N.C.
The Council requested that Bishop Rosemarie Wenner, president of the Council, and Bishop Debra Wallace-Padgett of the North Alabama Conference file a complaint regarding Bishop Melvin Talbert’s action, for “undermining the ministry of a colleague and conducting a ceremony to celebrate the marriage of a same gender couple.”
“When there are violations of the Book of Discipline, a response is required,” the bishops said in a statement.
The Council also voted to initiate a task force to lead conversations about human sexuality, race and gender in a global perspective. The goal of this effort is to come to a shared theological understanding amid diverse opinions in the church about these issues.
These actions followed days of prayerful discernment and conversation about the action it would take after retired Bishop Melvin Talbert conducted a ceremony on Oct. 26 celebrating the marriage of a same-gender couple in Center Point, Ala. – a chargeable offense for United Methodist clergy.
Church law says that, “Ceremonies that celebrate homosexual unions shall not be conducted by our ministers and shall not be conducted in our churches.”
Both the presiding bishop of the North Alabama area where the ceremony took place, Bishop Debra Wallace-Padgett, and the Executive Committee of the Council had requested that Bishop Talbert not perform the ceremony.
Under church law, the College of Bishops – which is constituted of the bishops in a jurisdictional or central conference – has authority and accountability for processing complaints against a bishop who serves (or served) in that area, which would be the Western Jurisdiction in this instance.
Earlier this week in the President’s Address, Bishop Wenner acknowledged there is diversity of opinion about many issues in the church. “We have to lead together although we are not one minded. We do not need to hide that we are diverse,” she said. In the address, she also noted, “Serious conflicts have to be brought to the tables where leaders are present,” an acknowledgment that supports the plan for further discussion of the issue through a task force.
In a statement, the Council said that when followers of Christ and people of conscience hold conflicting views, honest and respectful conversation and prayer are needed throughout the church. The Council expressed pastoral care and concern for all people. (Read the full statement online.)
Bishop Leeland Encourages Offering for Philippines Relief
In the Philippines, home to more than 210,000 United Methodists, countless numbers of people are suffering from the devastating results of Typhoon Haiyan, described as one of the most powerful hurricanes in history. Typhoon Haiyan caused extensive damage, destroying about 41,000 homes, displacing at least 670,000 people, and affecting a total of 11.3 million people. Thousands are feared dead. Without assistance, many more lives are in jeopardy.
United Methodists are already there, working to provide assistance through the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR).
Bishop Paul Leeland is encouraging every church in the Alabama-West Florida Conference to take a special offering this weekend for UMCOR relief efforts. Please send these offerings to the Fiscal Office, 4719 Woodmere Boulevard, Montgomery, AL 36106. Please designate “Advance #982450” on the check. Bishops from the Philippines area were at the Council of Bishops meeting at Lake Junaluska earlier in the week before returning home. They communicated the dire need for help in their areas.
To download a bulletin insert from UMCOR, click here.
Individuals can also donate online by clicking here.
Please continue to be in prayer for all those impacted by this storm.
Delegates to the 2016 General Conference are to be elected at either the 2014 or 2015 session of the Alabama-West Florida Annual Conference. (Paragraph 502.3)
You are to elect 5 Clergy Delegates and 5 Lay Delegates.
In accordance with Pars. 34-36 in the Constitution, delegates to the jurisdictional conferences are also to be elected.
¶ 34. Article III.—The annual conference shall elect clergy and lay delegates to the General Conference and to its jurisdictional or central conference in the manner provided in this section, Articles IV and V. The persons first elected up to the number determined by the ratio for representation in the General Conference shall be representatives in that body. Additional delegates shall be elected to complete the number determined by the ratio for representation in the jurisdictional or central conference, who, together with those first elected as above, shall be delegates in the jurisdictional or central conference. The additional delegates to the jurisdictional or central conference shall in the order of their election be the reserve delegates to the General Conference. The annual conference shall also elect reserve clergy and lay delegates to the jurisdictional or central conference as it may deem desirable. These reserve clergy and lay delegates to the jurisdictional or central conferences may act as reserve delegates to the General Conference when it is evident that not enough reserve delegates are in attendance at the General Conference.
In the election process, attention is directed to Par. 35 and 36, which now read:
¶ 35. Article IV.—The clergy delegates to the General Conference and to the jurisdictional or central conference shall be elected from the clergy members in full connection and shall be elected by the clergy members of the annual conference who are deacons and elders in full connection, associate members, and those provisional members who have completed all of their educational requirements and local pastors who have completed course of study or an M. Div. degree and have served a minimum of two consecutive years under appointment immediately preceding the election.
¶ 36. Article V.—The lay delegates to the General and jurisdictional or central conferences shall be elected by the lay members of the annual conference or provisional annual conference without regard to age, provided such delegates shall have been professing members of The United Methodist Church for at least two years next preceding their election, and shall have been active participants in The United Methodist Church for at least four years next preceding their election, and are members thereof within the annual conference electing them at the time of holding the General and jurisdictional or central conferences.
The election of jurisdictional conference delegates is governed by Par. 514
¶ 513. Membership
The membership of each jurisdictional conference shall consist of an equal number of clergy and lay delegates elected by the annual conferences as provided in the Discipline. Consideration shall be given to electing an inclusive delegation (¶¶ 124, 138). The number of delegates to which an annual conference is entitled shall be twice the number of its General Conference delegates, except when the application of that formula results in a total number of delegates to a jurisdictional conference less than 100. In that event, the Secretary of the General Conference shall adjust the number of delegates to a jurisdictional conference in the same proportion among the annual and missionary conferences of the jurisdiction to achieve a total of 100, ensuring that no annual or missionary conference shall be represented by fewer than four delegates.
and 515, which reads:
Election of Delegates — The clergy and lay delegates and reserves to the jurisdictional conferences shall be elected by ballot in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution.
Instructions for the reporting of elections will be sent to annual conference secretaries early in 2014.
The General Conference will be in session from May 10 through May 20, 2016 in Portland, Oregon, USA. Delegates are expected to be present from May 10 through May 20, with departure on May 21, 2016.
Specifics on travel and housing for General Conference will be distributed by the Office of the Business Manager of the General Conference in the fall of 2015.
Please be in touch if you have questions.
Rev. L. Fitzgerald Reist, II
Secretary of the General Conference
(Linda Bloom*, UMConnections) - If Congress drastically cuts the federal food stamp program, religious institutions will not be able to fill the gap for hungry families.
That was the message delivered by religious leaders from southeastern states who participated in an Oct. 30 media briefing.
The leaders expressed their concerns the same day as the first public meeting of the Congressional farm bill conference committee in Washington. The U.S. House version of the farm bill would cut the USDA’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, the nation’s primary food assistance program, by $39 billion.
In addition, on Nov. 1, the benefits of all 48 million people in the SNAP program are going to be cut across the board, for an average of 8 percent, said James Weill, president of the Food Research and Action Center in Washington.
Every southeastern state exceeds the U.S. national child poverty rate of 22.6 percent, according to the action center’s latest analysis. The SNAP caseload in eight southeastern states has increased 65.9 percent over the past five years.
“As the SNAP benefits are decreasing, we’re seeing an increase in individual needs in our area,” said Bishop Paul Leeland, who represents 650 congregations in the United Methodist Alabama-West Florida Annual (regional) Conference. “The majority of these people are children and older adults.”
Taking up the slack
Religious leaders criticized the assumption of some federal lawmakers that faith communities can pick up the cost of cuts to SNAP. To make up for the proposed reductions, each religious congregation in the U.S. would need to increase its food assistance by nearly $15,000 a year for the next 10 years, totaling more than $145,000, according to Bread for the World.
“Florida is undergoing a tremendous impact from unemployment,” said the Rev. Russell Meyer, executive director, Florida Council of Churches, and a clergy member of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. “If SNAP is cut, as proposed… the estimate is one out of three Florida families will face food insecurity at some point during the week.”
Religious groups in Florida, particularly suburban churches, would have to pick up the added responsibility for feeding the hungry in what “represents a tax on people of faith,” he argued.
The pricetag on feeding America’s poor doesn’t change just because the government shirks its duties and expects religious groups to fill in, Meyer pointed out. “It’s shifting a real cost in society onto a particular subset of society who feels the burden,” he explained. “Many people who don’t go to church feel the burden as well.”
Some lawmakers eager to slash food stamp funding seem to have a disconnect with what is happening in their own communities, the religious leaders noted.
North Carolina Bishop Hope Morgan Ward believes the key is to work on relationships with those in need.
Even some church members, she admitted, do not know the name of one child in living in poverty. United Methodists in her state, she said, “are engaged in increasing relationships with people who need SNAP assistance. We do not allow people we know and live with to go without food.”
Unable to meet the demand
The Rev. D. Scott Weimer, senior pastor, North Avenue Presbyterian Church in downtown Atlanta, said there is plenty of interfaith cooperation to assist those in need but an “increased strain in our ability to feed hungry people.”
His own congregation hosts a day care center and preschool for homeless children and they have discovered that many of the children who take advantage of free school lunch programs “are not eating on weekends and holidays.” Although religious leaders are encouraging churches to adopt schools to provide weekend meals, “what we are discovering is we can’t keep up even with that demand.”
The Rev. Connie Shelton, director of communications for the United Methodist Mississippi Annual Conference, told how the congregation at Heritage United Methodist Church in Hattiesburg discovered the importance of their backpack food ministry when a teacher described the excitement of one fifth-grade boy about having the gift of food for the weekend.
Mississippi residents already are generous to those in need, she said, but can’t absorb the gaps the proposed food stamp cuts will create. “Cutting a program without changing a system and culture is not the answer.”
Seniors also are suffering, said the Rev. Eric Mount, of the Kentucky Council of Churches’ Justice Advocacy Commission, who has observed both senior citizens and the programs that help feed them struggling to stay afloat. Some seniors, he added, are “having to choose between paying their (medical) co-pay and buying food.”
The stirring choruses of Handel's "Messiah" will again launch the holiday season for the Gulf Shores community with a 2:30 PM performance on Sunday, December 8, 2013 by the Choral Society of Pensacola at Gulf Shores United Methodist Church.
Under the baton of musical director Xiaolun Chen, featured soloists will include: Carla Connors, soprano; Wanda Brister, mezzo-soprano; Leo Day, tenor; and Patrick Jacobs, bass-baritone; along with the 60-member Choral Society singers. The performance will be accompanied by the Choral Society Orchestra, featuring members of the Pensacola Symphony.
Organized as the Pensacola Oratorio Society in the fall of 1935 for its first presentation of "Messiah," 2013 marks the choral group's 78th consecutive annual performance of this timeless masterpiece. Be a part of this moving experience.
Concert tickets may be purchased at the church office any weekday from 9AM to 4PM with reserved seating for $20 and general admission for $15. Call the church office 251-968-2411 for more information or please view the church website at www.gulfshoresumc.org.
Aldersgate UMC will present The Word Became Flesh, a Christmas drama featuring the Aldersgate Chancel Choir, Orchestra, and Drama Team.
River City United Methodist Church will host its 8th Annual Messiah Sing-Along: A Community Celebration December 10, 2013 beginning at 7 p.m.
All who love singing the beloved Handel's Messiah are invited to join members of the Montgomery Chorale and many church choirs at a sing-along performance of the Christmas portion accompanied by strings and harpsichord. It will thrill your heart to sing with a mass choir under the dome of the church's beautiful sanctuary. Listeners are also invited to enjoy this Christmas classic.
This event will be directed by Rebecca Barrineau Taylor, director of Montgomery Chorale. Outstanding soloists will be featured.
The event is free. Books will be furnished.
A nursery is available. Light refreshments will follow. Below is a downloadable flyer.
For additional information, call the church office 334-263-0549 .
GED classes are taught at St. John United Methodist Church/The Grace Place/El Lugar de Gracia. The classes are taught in English and Spanish, topics are Language/Composition or Essay and Mathematics/Science and classes are prepared based on actual GED tests, so you will be learning as if you were taking the exam.
Gulf Shores United Methodist Church invites you to a labyrinth walk that will prepare your heart for the “Christ” season. The walk will be December 11, 2013; come and go between 3 and 7 pm. Light refreshments will be served.
Advent is a season observed; it is a time of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of the birth of Christ at Christmas. It is the beginning of the liturgical year and commences on Advent Sunday, which is the fourth (4th) Sunday before Christmas. The Advent Prayer Labyrinth Journey's aim is to give people a quiet space to reflect on Christmas and its meaning for them and allow them to take something of this into their daily lives during the hectic holiday season. This Advent Prayer Labyrinth Journey uses the labyrinth idea of journeying inward to a still centre and then journeying outward back to the world.
There will be prayer stations one may choose to participate in to quieten and open themselves in preparation for their prayer walk.
Within the Christian tradition, labyrinths became popular during medieval times in Europe when pilgrimages to the Holy Land were dangerous. As a spiritual discipline, the faithful set out on such pilgrimages to designated cathedrals where labyrinths were often referred to as 'journeys to Jerusalem'. This spiritual exercise is reflective of our personal journey, twisting and turning, inward toward God's Mystery and outward toward the world. We enter the labyrinth without expectations and allow the experience to unfold.
All are welcome to join in this unique prayer walk. This spiritual experience is an ancient prayer tool ~ a method of 'walking meditation' by means of a spiritual path which leads the pilgrim to its center, symbolizing the search for God within us.
“Advent, like its cousin, Lent, is a season for prayer and re-formation of our hearts. Since it comes at winter time, fire is a sign to help us celebrate Advent. If Christ is to come more fully into our lives this Christmas, if God is to become really incarnate for us, then fire will have to be present in our prayer. Our worship and devotion will have to stoke the kind of fire in our souls that can truly change our hearts. Ours is a great responsibility not to waste this Advent time.” – Edward Hays, A Pilgrims Almanac
Frisco City United Methodist Church will particpate in a Live Nativity drive through December 13 and 14, 2013 beginning at 6:00 pm both nights. This live nativity scene will begin in front of the Frisco City High School on the practice ball field.
Your joyous journey begins at the corner of Ray's Hardware and continues up School Street. Drive slowly, lower your car window, and listen as church choir members sing carols. Their music will warm your heart and prepare you for the unfolding of this wondrous nativity story. Listening to a beautiful CD narrative, complete with background music, you will experience through sight and sound this live nativity. Ten stations with biblical characters, live animals, and realistic scenes tell the story of the birth of Christ. You will travel back in time to that humble stable and experience the wonder of the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Take away a free Christmas gift that you can share with your friends and family.
Hayrides are also available at Frisco City UMC. Bring a blanket, snuggle up and let our Frisco City Fire Department volunteers do the driving.
A new feature this year is the "Cross Carrier" puppeteers. This is a group of inspired young people from the Frisco City Holiness Church who will be performing both nights. You will be spellbound as "Gigi" shares her version of the Christmas story along with songs provided by the Puppeteers. They are located next to the Hospitality Tent.
You may park your vehicle and visit our prayer tent, hospitality tent and puppeteers. Parking instructions will be given at the CD Collection Center. Refreshments will be served in the hospitality tent. Bibles will be offered to visitors.
Everything is free!
We encourage you to come celebrate the birth of Christ with us; come as a family, church group, neighborhood group, or on your own. This is our gift to you from our area churches working together to promote Christian love and unit.
Sponsored by Frisco City Revive, Inc, our local firemen, the Town of Frisco City and area churches
Centre First United Methodist Church (Centre, AL) is seeking a Full-Time Children's Ministry Director. The Director will coordinate children's activities for the church including:
Wednesday Night Activities
Skills needed include:
A passion for working with children and helping them know Christ is the single most important part of this work.
Please submit a resume by email to email@example.com
Providence United Methodist Church is seeking a highly motivated and organized self-starter to act as a Ministry Coordinator to give organizational direction and administrative leadership to church ministries.
Proficiency in Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Publisher), familiarity with Google Applications (Gmail, Calendar, Blogger) and excellent writing, telephone, email, and interpersonal communication skills are essential, as well as an ability to learn and use various software and social media. The applicant should possess an understanding and appreciation of the teachings, doctrines, and structure of the United Methodist Church.
The position is designed to be part-time. Salary will be commensurate with the individual selected for the position.
Interested applicants should submit resumes to Rev. Brennan Peacock. firstname.lastname@example.org
Saraland United Methodist Church is accepting resumes for a Coordinator to lead its ministry and outreach to children and families. This position is part-time, 24 hours/week.
For more information, contact the church office at 251-675-2728.
Saraland United Methodist Church is accepting resumes for Director of its weekday Early Learning Center. This position is part-time, 28 hours/week. Previous experience in childcare is required, and certification or early/elementary education is preferred.
For more information, contact the church office at 251-675-2728.
Canterbury United Methodist Church (Birmingham, Al) is seeking a full-time Director of Children’s Ministries to join their children’s ministry team. The position will provide innovative, executive leadership over the development and implementation of all aspects of children’s ministry programming, serving children from birth through sixth grade, as well as their families.
The main responsibilities are:
For more detailed information and to submit a resume, please contact Sara Bailey at email@example.com.
The First United Methodist Church of Opelika, Alabama seeks a professional in music ministries. Our prayer is to find a person of deep faith who has the technical skills to direct multiple choirs of different ages along with a hand bell choir, direct and teach evening rehearsals, work and connect with other musicians, lead congregational and choral music in two Sunday morning services, and lead music as requested in special occasion services. The person hired will be capable of, and responsible for, building upon the dynamic, classically based music ministry already in place. The excellence of the music program at FUMC Opelika has long been a hallmark of the oldest church in east
Inquiries and résumés should be directed to Randy Woodham, Senior Pastor, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rev. Bobby Holladay (retired) passed away October 27, 2013. He is survived by his wife, Jane.
Funeral services will be held at Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church in Opelika, AL on Friday, November 1, 2013. The family will have visitation from 10:00 AM (CT) to 11:00 AM with the service to follow at 11:00 AM. Burial will be at the cemetery in his home town of Petrey, AL at 3:00 PM following the funeral service.
Please keep the Holladay Family in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.
Rev. Andy Paul Watford, a resident of Dothan, died September 11, 2013 at his residence after a courageous battle with cancer. He was 47.
Funeral services were held September 13, 2013 at Pleasant Grove United Methodist Church with Reverends Larry Newton and Addis Habbard officiating. The family received friends prior to the service at the church. Burial followed in Big Creek United Methodist Church cemetery with Southern Heritage directing.
Andy was born to Bennie Paul and Jimmie Thomley Watford on December 25, 1965 and was a lifelong resident of Houston County. He owned and operated Watford Welding and drove bus #886 for Rehobeth. Andy also pastored Rocky Creek United Methodist Church where he loved to sing and play the guitar. He loved family and friends and truly enjoyed life to the fullest.
Andy is preceded in death by his father, Bennie Paul Watford.
Survivors include his wife, Olivia Watford, Dothan; two sons, Evan Paul Watford and Noah B. Watford, Dothan; mother, Jimmie Watford, Southern Junction; sister, Cyndia Watford, Southern Junction; several aunts, uncles and cousins.
Rev. Thomas E. Smith passed away July 3, 2013 and was serving as a local pastor in the Baypines District. He is survived by his wife, Sybil.
Visitation was July 5, 2013 at Cravers Funeral Home in Brewton, AL. Service was held July 6, 2013 at Cravers Funeral Home beginning at 11 am.
William A. 'Bill' Young met his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on June 17, 2013.
Bill was born on July 30, 1927, in Festus, Miss., to the late Rev. D.C. Young and Sara McLean Young.
Bill is survived by his loving wife of 62 years, Lillian; son, Drew Young; daughters, JoAnn Young-Uszuko (Mark) and Cathy Hall; grandchildren, Rob Alti (Marta), Jody Hall, Luke Hall, Kaitlen, Hailey, Alyssa and D.J. Uszuko; great-grandchildren, Cynthia and Moses Alti, and Billie Hall; brothers, David (Laura) Young and Bonner (Dianne) Young; and sister-in law, Euris Young.
Many thanks to the nurses and staff of Regency Hospice for providing loving care to Bill and the family.
A celebration of life was held on Sunday, June 23, 2013, at Glendale Presbyterian Church. Pastor Bill Richoux and the Rev. John D. Reese officiated.
The family requests memorial gifts to Camp Victory, 363 Victory Circle, Samson, AL 36477.
Rev. Charles R. Wimberly, 79, of Lynn Haven, FL and formerly of Ashford, AL passed away Friday, June 14, 2013 at St. Andrews Nursing Facility.
Funeral services were held June 18, 2013 at Cedar Springs Baptist Church with Rev. Gary Daniel officiating . Burial followed in the church cemetery with Robert Byrd directing. The family received friends from 7 - 8:30 pm on Monday June 17 at Sunset Funeral Home.
Rev. Wimberly was born November 14, 1933 in Ashford, AL and lived there the early years of his life. He was a veteran of the Korean Conflict having served in the U.S. Navy for 3 years. Following his return he became a Methodist minister and was a pastor for over 38 years until recently. He has resided in Lynn Haven, FL for the past 10 years. Rev. Wimberly was preceded in death by a son Carl Wimberly, and his wife Mary Wimberly and his first wife Edna Wimberly.
Survivors include his son Ken Wimberly and his wife Kathy of Dothan; grandchildren, Kaleb Wimberly and his wife Lindsay, Jake Wimberly and his wife Brittany, Jessica McLemore, Shelby McLemore, and Ashley McLemore; a great-grandson, John David Wimberly; brothers, Milton Wimberly and Reginald King; several nieces and nephews.
Dr. Nicholas Robert Holler, 74, of Auburn, died on Tuesday morning, June 4, at East Alabama Medical Center.
Dr. Holler loved and gave himself fully to two careers, first as a wildlife biologist and then a congregational care minister, as well as served in the United States Army. In 1973 he received a Ph.D. from the University of Missouri-Columbia in the field of Zoology. He worked as a wildlife biologist for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service from 1970 to 1993, and served as Unit leader of the Alabama Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit at Auburn University from 1985 to 1998, as well as a professor of Zoology and Wildlife Sciences. Dr. Holler was consecrated as a Diaconal Minister in 1998 after completing his foundational course of study at Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University, and later transitioned to Deacon. In 1998 he was hired by Auburn United Methodist Church to implement and develop a Congregational Care Ministry. Many in the community have felt the church's love through the ministry he pioneered. He retired from his position with the church in 2009.
Dr. Holler was born in Plymouth, Indiana and preceded in death by his mother and father Margaret (Flaig) Holler and Nicholas J. Holler, as well as his siblings, Elizabeth Bryan, Edward Holler, and Lydia Walch. He leaves behind his wife, Margaret Holler, to whom he was married for thirty years; his daughters, Jeanette Culpepper and Nicole Holler-Garzon, and two son-in laws, Tim Culpepper and Luis Garzon. He also leaves a sister, Marge Stephens, two grandchildren, Courtney and Presley Culpepper, and many family members whom he dearly loved.
A memorial service will be held at 4:00 p.m. Saturday, June 8, 2013 at Auburn United Methodist Church with a visitation at the church one hour prior to the service. A visitation will also be held Friday from 6-8 p.m. at Jeffcoat-Trant Funeral Home.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions may be directed to S.I.F.A.T. (Servants in Faith and Technology), Wounded Warrior Project, The Nature Conservancy, or Louise Kreher Forest Ecology Preserve.