The Call: Oct. 1, 2021

The Call: Oct. 1, 2021

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Field of dreams

Food pantries are full of canned and boxed items but fresh produce can be harder to find. In Knoxville, Concord United Methodist Church answered that need by turning two nearby empty lots into a field of dreams, full of hundreds of tomato, pepper, squash and okra plants. Everything grown in the garden goes to food pantries and feeding programs. From United Methodist Communications. See video.
Goals set for collecting disaster-relief kits
In response to the growing need for "Cleaning Kits" and "Hygiene Kits," Holston's director of connectional ministries set goals for each district and local church to help the conference restock its inventory. The suggested deadline is Oct. 31. From The Call. Read story.

Pastor stays sober through the great outdoors
The Rev. Matt Hall, associate pastor at First UMC in Maryville, shares with Guideposts how a summer ministering to hikers along the Appalachian Trail influenced his recovery from drug addiction. See video. Read story.

 Seniors reunite at the 'Babe Cave'
The pandemic separated them for a period of 16 months, during which five members passed away. The ministry for seniors has now resumed at Wesley House Community Center, and the "grannies" are finally back together. From WBIR. See story.

Serving Wesleyan evangelism amid pandemic
For World Methodist Evangelism, the pandemic has meant some adjustments but also some new opportunities to help the Wesleyan family share Christ’s love. Bishop Debra Wallace-Padgett chairs the World Methodist Council's committee on evangelism. From UM News. Read story.

Vaccinated craftsman dies from COVID-19
Newman Smith was a Gatlinburg craftsman and loyal United Methodist. His wife Peggy Smith, music director at First UMC, shares how COVID-19 recently snatched his life away. "I can't believe he's gone." From WBIR. See story.

Groups slowly returning to Lake Junaluska
Lake Junaluska lost nearly half its revenue in 2020. For 2021, they’ve lost around $2 million. A surge in Haywood County tourism is helping to bring groups back to the area, says Ken Howle, executive director. From The Mountaineer. Read story.

Bishop Richard Looney pens humor book
Bishop Richard Looney's stories have gone from pulpit to paper with the recent publication of his book, “The Fun of Being Looney.” A native of Holston Conference, Looney is donating proceeds to the Foundation for Evangelism. From The Chattanoogan. Read story.

25 children's books to celebrate Hispanic heritage
National Hispanic Heritage month continues from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15. Celebrate by sharing these stories -- created by Latine and Hispanic authors and illustrators -- with the children in your life. From UMC Board of Church & Society. Read story.

   Photo of the Week    

Bishop Debra Wallace-Padgett completed her first month as resident bishop of Holston Conference by visiting five of nine districts: Sept. 21, New River; Sept. 22, Clinch Mountain; Sept. 25, Mountain View; Sept. 27, Tennessee Valley [pictured]; and Sept. 28, Three Rivers. She will resume her "listening tour" Oct. 11 in Appalachian District, followed by Nov. 9 in Hiwassee, Nov. 15 in Scenic South, and Nov. 29 in Smoky Mountain.


Lay Servant Training
Opportunities continue through Nov. 3. Register now.
Resurrection Youth Ministry
Early-bird deadline is Oct. 15 for the Jan. 21-23, 2022 event. Register now.
Oct. 3: World Communion Sunday
Oct. 4: Camp Wesley Woods Golf Tournament
Nov. 15-16: Sabbath Retreats at Holston Camps
Holston Calendar
UMC Calendar

  More Resources  

The Call is Holston Conference's weekly newsletter for 850 United Methodist congregations in East Tennessee, Southwest Virginia, and North Georgia. Contact Annette Spence, editor, at

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