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A Word from Pastor Thomas
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,

I hope and pray that you are healthy, whole, and the love of God is ruling in as well as guarding your hearts. As you know these are unprecedented times in which we are living. I am writing you to let you know that I miss seeing you and being gathered with you in worship and working alongside you in service in the manner in which we have grown accustomed. And yet, if there is one thing that I am clear about it is that whenever that time comes when it is safe to gather again, we can’t gather unless we are still alive.

As you are aware this pandemic has disproportionately affected the Black community. National data released by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) shows that Black people represent 33% of those infected even though we represent 18% of the number of persons tested. In the state of Louisiana where Black people constitute 32% of the population, we represent 70% of those who have died from the Coronavirus. In the city of Chicago where Black people represent 30% of the population, we represent 52% of those who have died from this same virus. I am sure that you are privy to conversations regarding the need to restart the economy. I am in agreement that at some point this will need to take place. However, as your pastor, that time will be determined by what is in the best interest (safety) of the members of Ben Hill United Methodist Church.

The governor of the State of Georgia has issued a stay-in-place order. We have been instructed to wash our hands and wear masks. I strongly encourage us take these and other measures designed to ensure our safety seriously. Unfortunately, there are too many people in our community who are without masks or simply refuse to wear one. I would encourage us that when we see others not complying with these safety standards to “kindly” ask that they do so. If there ever was a time when we needed to “police ourselves in order to protect and save ourselves,” that time is now!

Finally, as your pastor I want to reiterate what I said earlier: we can’t gather together again unless we are all alive to do so. Until that time, my practice, hope, and prayer will be that we continue to do what the Church of God in Christ Jesus has been called to do – make disciples of Jesus Christ. We will continue to do this by engaging in what we have been taught, and prayerfully we have learned to do: the six marks of discipleship: 1) daily Bible study; 2) weekly worship; 3) daily prayer; 4) developing spiritual friends; 5) service; 6) giving. These marks that do not require a building to practice. Like those in the early church, it requires a willingness to take up the journey that God has called us to travel in the way God has called us to travel.

Remain safe, be good to yourself, be good to others, and may we all be encouraged by these words of the Apostle Paul: “ But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one.” (2 Thessalonians 3:3)

Peace and Blessings,

Pastor Thomas
Thank You to Our Volunteers
Do you want to recognize a special Ben Hill UMC volunteer or medical professional? We will feature those serving our communities on our social media pages each week. If you would like to highlight someone, please e-mail Kristan Jones-Scales at Include a brief description of the volunteer and a photo.
Autism Awareness Month
A common thread among the BHUMC Differently Abled Ministry and the Health & Wellness Ministry is to show love, support, and advocacy while embracing members, their families and the surrounding community to live healthy and well and with dignity. Our Ministry’s goal is to share relevant information, resources, and insightful stories to our audience. We applaud our own families at Ben Hill UMC who have and live with a loved one with autism!
Youth Birthday Celebration
The youth ministry will host a virtual birthday party for the youth whose birthdays were in March and April. Save the date for Sunday, April 19 at 2:00pm. The Zoom link will be emailed to all youth. If you are interested in participating and are not included on the mailing list, please contact Rev. Pollard at
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. Windows typically uses Internet Explorer or Edge. Macs typically use Safari. You can try to download and install either Firefox or Google Chrome.
  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 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.

How to Connect on Sunday Mornings:
May our Lord bless and comfort you and your family during this time of grief.
Please accept our sincere condolences.

Mary Nelloms (M) on the loss of her husband
Walter Nelloms (R)

Dr. John & Mrs. Donna Johnson (M) on the loss of their uncle
Melvin Johnson (R)

Janice Daniel (M) on the loss of her cousin
Asbury Daniel (R)
The FDA is working to address the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak and keep you and your family informed on the latest developments. In case you missed it, here is the latest information for consumers on this important topic:

Fraudulent COVID-19 products can come in many varieties, including dietary supplements and other foods, as well as products claiming to be tests, drugs, medical devices, or vaccines. Because COVID-19 has never been seen in humans before, there are currently no vaccines to prevent or drugs to treat COVID-19 approved by the FDA. The FDA is working with medical product developers to rapidly advance the development and availability of vaccines and treatments for COVID-19. 

The FDA is working in many ways to help keep people safe while the nation is coping with the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19). Food availability and food safety are vitally important to our well-being, and the FDA is working hard to help ensure the foods you, your family, and your pets eat are safe and available. 

Each of us can help stop the spread of COVID-19 disease by washing our hands regularly with soap and water for 20 seconds – especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after coughing, sneezing, or blowing your nose. If soap and water are not available, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that consumers use alcohol-based hand sanitizers containing at least 60% alcohol. 
To learn more about these and other coronavirus topics, visit:  FDA Consumer Updates