Bishop’s ‘district days’ help laity, clergy to work together

By Jessica Brodie

ROCK HILL—South Carolina’s resident bishop continues his tour across the districts this month, visiting with lay and clergy leaders to strengthen and foster effective and God-centered leadership within The United Methodist Church.

This month, Bishop L. Jonathan Holston is scheduled to be in the Columbia District March 2, the Anderson District March 16 and the Marion District March 23.

Three more remain: Spartanburg District April 6, Orangeburg District April 13, and Walterboro District May 18.

The gatherings share the theme “Strengthening Your Soul to Lead” based on the book, “Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership: Seeking God in the Crucible of Ministry,” by Ruth Haley Barton.

Holston spent time most recently in the Rock Hill District Feb. 3 and the Hartsville District Feb. 10.

In Rock Hill, Holston—joined by District Superintendent Dr. Anthony Hodge, the Rev. Millie Nelson Smith, the Rev. Matt Yon and congregational specialist Chris Lynch, among others—began by welcoming all.

“We’re here because of those who’ve come before us who created a pathway for each and every one of us,” Holston said.

He noted those gathered are leaders in the denomination, and it’s up to clergy and laity to work together to do God’s mission.

“We know it’s not happening in a vacuum,” Holston said. “But let us never lose sight of our mission …  whom God wants us to be, whom God is perfecting us to be. …

“I need you to be who God has called you to be.”

Holston noted there’s a tension between who we are, who we say we are and who we hope to be. But together, we can be the church and draw others to Jesus.

For more on upcoming district days, visit

March District Days

  • March 2: Lexington UMC, 309 E. Main St., Lexington, (9 a.m. to 12:45 p.m.)

  • March 16: Anderson District, St. John’s UMC, 515 S. McDuffie St., Anderson (9 a.m. to noon)

  • March 23: Marion District, Trinity UMC, 198 Long Ave., Conway (10 a.m.-12:30 p.m.)

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