The time has come to nominate outstanding clergy and laity in the South Carolina Conference of The United Methodist Church for awards to be presented at the 2022 Annual Conference in June, as well as an annual award for scouting units at UMC churches.
Nominations for the awards must be submitted by April 1.
For more details about any of these awards, and to download nomination forms, go to https://www.umcsc.org/awards.
Awards to be presented are as follows:
Bishop’s Five-Star Award (Board of Evangelism): This award provides an incentive for churches to embrace new ministries each year geared toward growth and outreach.
It enables small and large churches to receive recognition. Criteria include an increase in Sunday school attendance and/or enhancement of Christian education ministry; a “new work” that impacts growth; members received by profession of faith or rededication, one for every 100 members; emphasis on youth ministries that demonstrate growth; and all apportionments paid in full for 2021, or a 25 percent increase in apportionment payments compared to 2020.
Harry Denman Evangelism Award (The Foundation for Evangelism): This award honors a pastor, a lay adult and a youth from any size church for responsible evangelism in the local church. It recognizes people who are effective in making disciples of Jesus Christ. This can involve speaking, personal witnessing or inspiring the church to be involved in evangelism.
Nominees’ lifestyles bring honor to Christ, the church and works in ways that are in keeping with the United Methodist history and traditions.
Barbara Boultinghouse Bridge Builder Award (General Commission on the Status and Role of Women): Named after a UMC deaconess, this award is given to a person or organization in the South Carolina Conference who has built bridges of understanding by promoting equity and inclusiveness without regard to race, gender, age, handicap or economic condition.
Michael C. Watson Volunteer in Mission Award (Conference Board of Global Ministries): Named in honor of the founder of the South Carolina United Methodist Volunteers in Mission, this award is given to one clergy and one layperson who exemplify extraordinary volunteer mission service within the conference, beyond the local church.
Joseph Benjamin Bethea Distinguished Service Award (Conference Committee on Religion and Race): This award is presented to a person who has performed outstanding service in working for racial justice. Laity or clergy of the conference who have shown a strong commitment to Christian social justice for at least five years (fewer, if the individual is a youth) are eligible. Criteria include efforts toward elimination of racism; efforts toward building inclusiveness; efforts toward empowerment of persons considered a minority (racially or ethnically); Christian character; and servanthood.
Bishop’s Award of Excellence (Conference Scouting Ministry): This award recognizes United Methodist congregations that extend their ministry to children and youth by creating a faith-based environment for children, youth, their families and their leaders who participate in Girl Scouts of the USA and Scouts BSA. All of the following criteria must be met:
- 20 percent or more of registered youth members of the unit working toward or having completed appropriate religious emblem program;
- 20 percent of the registered adult leaders must be members of the United Methodist Church;
- Unit must participate in annual Scouting Ministries Sunday observance in the local church;
- Unit must plan and complete one service project in each of the following categories: local church (e.g., grounds workday), the community (e.g., litter pick-up), conference, national or work programs of the United Methodist Church (e.g., hunger relief, work service or UMCOR);
- Unit leader and scouting coordinator must review unit sponsor agreement program plans with pastor annually;
- Unit must observe regular worship services when away from the church on Sundays for camping experiences or trips; and
- Unit must have a person assigned to encourage active participation in religion, respecting the faiths of all, and Boy Scout troops must have a registered unit chaplain (adult) and chaplain aide (youth).
Recipients of the awards will be recognized at the 2022 Annual Conference.