First UMC in Hickory Hosts Older Adult Conference May 6 & 7


Evergreen ConferenceFirst UMC in Hickory is hosting - Evergreen: Always Growing, Always Living- May 6 & 7. The Rev. Dr. William Randolph will lead us in worship as we explore new and exciting ways to Live and Grow in our faith. A native of North Carolina,Randolph is the current Director of Aging and Older Adult Ministries at the General Board of Discipleship (GBOD) which is a part of The United Methodist Church. Dr. Randolph works with annual conference leaders and leaders in congregations to identify the needs of older adults, advocate for older adults and identify ways older adults come to faith and deepen their faith throughout their days.

List of breakout sessions:

Dementia Caregiving & Worship:  Caregiving for Dementia patients is taxing. Learn about how caregiving for them is an act of love as well as how to worship with dementia patients. Led by Rev Will Randolph.

Legacy: Learn to leave a legacy to your children and grandchildren—leave your story. Learn how to write and leave a story for your children to cherish. Led by Rev Will Randolph.

Unexpected Beauty: Walk over to the Hickory Art Museum to experience “Unexpected Beauty” – an exhibit of Steve McCurry’s photographs – and view these photographs through a Biblical Lens. Led by Reverend Wil Posey.

Funeral Planning: Funeral costs can be a big expense for loved ones. In this session, learn what steps to take now to be preparing for funerals. Led by Gwen Carter .

Care for the Caregiver: Caregiving is taxing. In this session of care, learn steps to maintain your health as you care for loved ones.Led by Mary Mitchell.

Technology & You: Does technology confuse you? This session will be led by teenagers who will help you learn more about your technological device. Led by Troy Howard. *Bring your technological device for this session.

Worshiping Through Music: Enjoy worshiping through music? In this session, you will learn a hand bell piece to play during Saturday night worship. *This breakout session is at both 10:30am and 1:30pm sessions. Led by Rev Rhonda Smith.

Chair Yoga/Strength Training: In this session, learn techniques to increase your strength and how to exercise at home. TBA

Fire & Fall Prevention: Led by local EMS: you will learn what steps to use to help prevent fires and fall-ing as well as simple steps to help stay in your home.

More information:

Resources for Vital Congregations



Lewis Center for Church Leadership

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Books

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Serve Your Neighbor

GBHEM Leadership Resources


Living Faithfully: Human Sexuality and the United Methodist Church

Englewood Book Review

Five Practices of Fruitful Congregations

Ted Talks: The Golden Circle

Ted Talks: The Power of Vulnerability

Ted Talks: The Price of Invulnerability

Design Thinking

Meditations on the Ministry of All Christians


Be A Disciple

A Disciple’s Path; A Guide for United Methodist

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Adult Christian Studies from the Wesley Ministry Network

Traveling Together: A Guide for Disciple Forming Congregations


Living As United Methodist Christians

Methodist Doctrine: The Essentials

Reclaiming our Wesleyan Tradition: John Wesley’s Sermons for Today

John Wesley Sermons: Anthology


Get Their Name

Evangelism & Theology in the Wesleyan Spirit

Canoeing the Mountains

Fresh Expressions

Fresh Expressions: Dinner Church

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Reach New Disciples

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: 50 Ways to Reach People

Community: The Structure of Belonging


Institute for Emerging Issues

Congregations 4 Children


The Royce and Jane Reynolds Ministry Fund Grants

The Duke Endowment


The Appalachian District Church Vitality Team has been prayerfully seeking ways to help support you and the ministries of your local congregation during this COVID-19 pandemic. Together they have diligently researched and connected with others throughout the conference and our denomination to identify resources and offer them to you. We hope they will be helpful to you and bless you greatly in leading your churches and communities through this unprecedented time. We are very grateful to the District Vitality Team and other contributors for their great work on this resource.
This faithful team has created three documents, two of which you are receiving today. They include:

  • Family Home Worship – designed to help families establish a regular worship space within their homes as well as a time where they can worship together.
  • Tech Strategies – to help guide you in selecting effective tools and resources within your budget to best communicate in the digital world.

We believe these resources will be of great benefit to you. Also know that the District Vitality Team is available to answer any questions you might have in regards to the documents attached. If you have questions, you may email Rev. Howard Fleming at


  • Resources
Follow Jesus. Make Disciples. Transform the World.