Dear Friends,

Let me begin by thanking each of you for the wonderful gift you gave to Linda, Brittany, and me at Christmas.  We all thank you for your generous gift but most of all we thank you for your love and support.

I hope everyone had a great time during the holidays and are off to a great New Year.  The Christmas holidays were a mixed blessing for us. On December 14 th our new granddaughter was born in Houston.  She is beautiful!  You can’t ask for a better Christmas present than that! During the holidays I attended four funerals.  One I helped conduct for a dear Baptist friend in Andalusia.  It was a season of mixed emotions.  I know many of you had to deal with similar things.  But, the New Year brings us the opportunities of new beginnings.  I pray each of you will have a great 2019!

As a reminder, please check to see where your church is in paying their connectional giving.  The close of the business day on Tuesday is the latest payments can be applied to your church for 2018.  I have just received a list of all our churches and where they stand.  To those of you who have paid 100%, I give you my heartfelt thanks.  Many of you are behind a small amount and I am confident you will make the deadline.  Some of our churches have paid very little or nothing!  Even some of our churches who have been given money through our connection haven’t paid anything or very little.  Some of our churches wouldn’t even exist without our Connectional giving. I don’t understand this.  We will be discussing this more at your consultation. Be prepared to share with me the steps you have taken to promote our connectional giving in your local church.

Brittany will soon send out the schedule for consultations.  I will be doing them all day for several days so this is a busy time. If, for some reason, you cannot make your scheduled appointment, please try to swap with someone.  If you are unable, send me a text or email and we will work out a different date.

With the recent deaths we have had in our clergy families, the Bishop and Cabinet have a lot of work to do in a short period of time.  If you are anticipating moving, whether it is your wish, the wish of your church, or both, please send me a text or email letting me know.  We will be meeting all of next week to start the process of appointments.  Of course, if you or your church is anticipating a move, we will discuss this more at your consultation. Thanks for your help with this.

We have a lot going on in our Church.  With the special General Conference session in February, consultations, and appointment making, I ask for your prayers for Bishop Graves and all Superintendents. We go through this process spending a good amount of time in prayer. We seek God’s direction, guidance, and ask for the gift of discernment.  I hope you will join us in prayer.

I am thankful for each of you, both clergy and laity, and am thankful to serve with you.  May we all be faithful to being what God has called us to be and do what God has called us to do.  God bless all of you in the new year!

Dr. Tim Trent
Pensacola District Superintendent