2021 Appointments

As we shared earlier in March, within the structure of the United Methodist Church, pastors are appointed for one year at a time. The appointments are usually a result of consultation between the SPRC, the District Superintendent and the Bishop. The appointments for 2021 which affect Ben Hill UMC will become effective on July 1, 2021.

Reverend Dr. Byron E. Thomas, our current senior pastor, will be the District Superintendent of the Central South District of the NGUMC. Reverend Dr. Derrick R. Rhodes, current senior pastor of Kelly Chapel United Methodist Church, will be the Pastor-in-Charge/Senior Pastor of Ben Hill United Methodist Church.

Rev. Elizabeth Colby Pollard, one of the current Associate Pastors, will be the Associate Pastor of Northbrook United Methodist Church. Reverend Gia Cassandra Jones, current pastor of Mt. Bethel United Methodist Church and Warren Chapel United Methodist Church, will be one of our Associate Pastors at Ben Hill UMC.

Rev. Brian Tillman, current Associate Pastor of Ben Hill, will be returning as Associate Pastor. Reverend Brenda Presha, current Assistant Pastor of Ben Hill, will be returning as Assistant Pastor.

We pray God’s blessings on all of these appointments as we move into a new conference year beginning July 1, 2021.
Reopening Survey

While we anxiously look forward to the day when we'll be worshiping together again in person, we're excited to see the ways that God is allowing us to utilize technology to connect people to God and one another!

The survey will be conducted through the end of the day. The information collected will be used to help us gain an understanding of congregational attitudes and behavior during the time of the pandemic and assist us in making certain that our efforts will create the safest and most up-to-date precautions to assure a healthy and safe environment when we return. Your help is solicited and valued. This survey is not an indication of when we will return. Please complete this survey and provide your honest feedback.

One survey per household.

-The Task Force on Re-Opening
Words of Gratitude

To the Ben Hill UMC, I would like to express my thanks and gratitude to your church and members for their outpouring love, prayers, and words of encouragement and comfort. I feel God's love and the love of my sisters and brothers in Christ. This touches my heart deeply. I feel very blessed. On behalf of myself and the family of dearly departed Vera Richardson. Thanks and God Bless each of you.

Peace and Love,
Cornelius Richardson
Calling all brothers. The Richard D.Winn Sr. Men's Spiritual Retreat is returning, but in a virtual format on beginning tonight through Saturday, April 24th. Tonight we will begin at 7:00 pm. Saturday will be live on zoom and we will begin at 8:30 a.m. We will address topics that were born out of the pandemic including depression, rage, intimacy, good health and excellence in Christian living. Our participants include Pastor Byron Thomas, Rev. Brian Tillman, Dr. Damon Williams, Dr. Aziza Platt, Dr. Millard Collier and Minister Willie Nelson. There is no cost to attend the retreat this year. However, we are seeking retreat sponsors if you would like to sow a seed of $100 to be recognized or to promote your business. We hope to see you there and bring a friend.
You can also join by dialing in (929)205-6099
Meeting ID: 813 4782 7100
Chairs, tables and other furnishings from the former Ben Hill Christian Academy will be made available for purchase by Ben Hill members and the community on Thursday and Friday, April 29 and 30 from 10 am until 5 pm in the Fellowship Hall. Items will be priced for a quick sale and all sales will be final. You must bring or provide your own mode of transporting the item(s) you are purchasing. 

Department of Church Operations
Join the Ben Hill United Methodist Women, Ben Hill Prison Ministry and Family Unification Network to secure enough funds to provide soap for each prison in the state of Georgia. Our goal is to donate 65,000 bars of soap! Due to COVID-19, we are asking for monetary donations to help meet this goal. We are asking you to give as the Spirit leads you.

Ways to Give:
Ben Hill online portal. Type “Prison Ministry” in the optional memo field
Check: Made payable to Ben Hill UMC; specify for “Prison Ministry”
Mail to the Church: 2099 Fairburn Road / Atlanta GA 30331

For additional information or questions, please contact Alfreda Harris (404-312-5961). The deadline is May 30th. Thank you for all you do to share God’s love.
Attention college students, high school seniors, and parents. Ben Hill's Higher Education Ministry is debuting its scholarship portal and stepping into the 21st century. No need for pen and paper anymore because everything can be done on the online portal at BenHillUMC.org. All applications are due by May 3rd, no exceptions.
Since 2010, a project in Atlanta, GA, called Coins of Hope Ministries, has assisted the rural community of Mpoyi, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), with over $40,000 in donations to relieve hunger and provide access to education. Working with Ben Hill United Methodist Church, we have made summer trips to offer summer school to students and sponsored students by paying their school fees for several academic years. Your contributions enabled these students to pursue their dream of an education!

Our goal now is to raise $5,000 for:
Essential accommodations – outdoor kitchen and stove, toilets and showers - for visiting professionals taking solar cookers and water disinfectants to Mpoyi, to curve widespread intestinal and respiratory diseases.

The brainchild of Dr. Tshilemalema Mukenge, who is from this region of DRC, Coins of Hope focuses on community empowerment given the reality that the community of 6,300 people has no access to clean drinking water, 90% live in poverty, and parents cannot afford to send children to school. Only 50% of children attend school. Your sacrificial donations to Ben Hill for Coins of Hope can be accepted online or by check, from March through May. If you have questions or concerns, contact T. L. Mukenge 404-767-2028.
This past year we have learned to worship, serve one another, and meet the needs of our community in all kinds of new ways. Many of us have felt the loss of being physically present together. Some of us may have found some unexpected benefits to our new ways of gathering. But we are reminded that the church has always been bigger than a building. 

Recently, we launched a new way to make our online worship and fellowship even better, more engaging! It’s easy to use -- if you’ve already mastered videoconferencing, you’ll find this about the same level. The platform is called Altar Live. If you are able, please try watching the service on Sunday here or join us after service for fellowship by using the link below and just take a look around. You may want to get dressed just in case you sit down with someone but feel free to let others know and let me know your experience. We'll be working to introduce the platform to our ministries and plan on how we use it for discipleship and fellowship for our members. 
In an effort to support the growing need for food assistance during this challenging and unprecedented time, the Ben Hill Food Bank is reaching out to our church ministries. If your ministry budget permits, please consider purchasing items in the food donation list below. The highlighted items are needed most.

The Food Bank is in URGENT need of canned goods and plastic bag donations.

  • Breakfast food- cereal, grits, oatmeal
  • Boxed or canned milk 
  • Canned Vegetables/peas/beans/corn
  • Canned Fruits 
  • Canned Meat
  • Rice/mashed potatoes
  • Pasta
  • Tomato sauce
  • Loaves of Bread 
  • Peanut butter and jelly
Ministries should bring the food items to the Food Bank Drive-Up on Wed. (10:30am-12:30pm) or Saturday (10:30am-12:30pm). Donating is simple: 1) Place the food in the trunk of your car.  2) When you arrive, call the Food Bank at (404) 344-0618 X 1115 or (404) 314-2241, and someone will meet you to take the food from your car. All donations are touchless--keeping our donors and volunteers safe.


Also, we need (lots of ) plastic bags, the type used at grocery stores. 

In lieu of donating food items, please consider making a monetary donation by check or online as follows:

Make payable to Ben Hill UMC and specify "Food Bank" in note area. Mail to
Ben Hill UMC, ATTN: Food Bank, 2099 Fairburn Road SW, Atlanta, GA 30331

Make your contribution at benhillumc.org/giving. Click "Food Bank" under the Select a Fund options.

We are thankful and grateful to ALL BHUMC Ministries, Families and Friends for your support. Your generosity and steadfast support of the Food Bank and the families who depend on the essential services it provides are appreciated. Please let us know if you are able to help by contacting Vicki Callaway at (404) 314-2241 or vcallaway@aol.com.
The Prison Ministry would like to send cards, words of encouragement, to those who are currently incarcerated. Perhaps you have a loved one or know of someone who would appreciate receiving a card. The Prison Ministry offers a safe nonjudgmental space to seek prayers and support. Please contact Gloria Parker, gloriaparker3790@comcast.net or Cynthia Holland at cythinam@msn.com with the name and mailing information of your loved one.
The Prayer Ministry will host Corporate Prayer every Wednesday from 6:15 pm - 6:45 pm. Weekly Corporate Prayer will feature a prayer of thanksgiving, a reading from the Upper Room Daily Devotional, and intercessory prayer. We will be inviting Clergy and Laity to pray the intercessory prayer. 

To attend Corporate Prayer, please call: (712) 770- 4936, Access Code: 627746. When calling in, please mute your cell phones. If you call in on a landline please turn the volume down on televisions, radios, etc. We look forward to everyone calling in and praying together. To submit Prayer Requests, please visit: benhillumc.org.
During this season, we want to remind you of the benefits of Stephen Ministry. Stephen Ministry is a collection of specially trained lay people who are trained to listen and provide Christian care for people during the most challenging parts of their lives. It is confidential, one on one, and gender specific. Stephen Ministers are assigned to an individual for about an hour a week. This is especially meaningful for individuals who may be alone during the pandemic, who are grieving, who have a challenging health diagnosis, and who are finding it hard to deal with the challenges in their life.

If this sounds like you, please contact us via email: annex@benhillumc.org and we will be happy to walk along side you. You can also call the church office and ask to speak with Beverly Register or Rev. Tillman.
Community Events and Resources
FEMA Funeral Reimbursement Program
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought overwhelming grief to many families. At FEMA, the mission is to help people before, during and after disasters and they are dedicated to helping ease some of the financial stress and burden caused by the virus.

Under the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021 and the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, FEMA will provide financial assistance for COVID-19-related funeral expenses incurred after January 20, 2020, up to $7,000.00.

FEMA will begin accepting applications for Funeral Assistance on Monday, April 12, 2021 through our dedicated call center. More information will be available on their page soon.

Senior Food Assistance Program
Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms launched the City of Atlanta Senior Food Assistance Program to support seniors with food insecurity during COVID-19 by partnering with meal and grocery delivery organizations. Seniors who reside in the City of Atlanta and are struggling to receive access to food during this time may apply to be a part of this program by completing this survey found here. You may also contact ATL311 for information or help with filling out the survey by dialing 311 within the city limits or (404) 546-0311.

Specific program eligibility requirements are listed below:
  • Reside in the City of Atlanta;
  • Age 60 or older;
  • Low income (household income at or below 80% of the AMI);
  • Not participating in any other senior food assistance program and meet one of the following criteria:
  • Unable to leave home;
  • Unable to prepare meals for themselves; or
  • Unable to procure or utilize commercial home delivery services.
* Completion of the survey does not guarantee acceptance into the program.

Health Resources
What to Expect After Getting The COVID-19 Vaccine
COVID-19 vaccination will help protect you from getting COVID-19. You may have some side effects, which are normal signs that your body is building protection. These side effects may affect your ability to do daily activities, but they should go away in a few days.
Connect With Us
What to do if you cannot view the stream
Here are some helpful tips if you should encounter any issues with accessing Ben Hill's Live Stream:
  1. Try a different Web browser. Most browsers should work but if your web browser is not showing the stream, try a different one. 
  2. Try going to the Ben Hill UMC Facebook Page and view the Live Stream there.
  3. Try the phone app. If you do not have the Ben Hill app, download it from your app store and view the steam from there.
  4. Access StreamingFaith.com as another option to view the live stream.
On Sunday mornings, live chat is available on the Ben Hill website if you should encounter issues and need additional help.

New! Tune into the sermon by using Sermon by Phone.
The Sunday service will be made available at 9:15am on Sundays by dialing in at:

Links to Connect on Sunday Mornings: