Through the financial support of the Tennessee Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church, the Golden Cross Foundation is expanding older adult ministry throughout the conference!



Through the financial support of the Tennessee Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church, the Golden Cross Foundation is expanding older adult ministry throughout the conference!



The Tennessee Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church acted in June 2012 to initiate a new vision for the expansion of older adult ministries all across the conference.

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Golden Cross Supports Safer Worship Grant

By now you may have heard that churches in the Nashville Episcopal Area may return to in-person worship once local health officials deem it safe to gather. To ensure proper safety protocols are in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the episcopal office of Bishop Bill McAlilly has developed Guidelines for In-Person Worship during COVID-19.

In addition, a Safer Worship Grant has been established by the Golden Cross Foundation (GCF), Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare, and the Turner Center at Martin Methodist College to support churches in providing safer in-person worship experiences. Until depleted, these funds will be used to help reimburse local churches for expenses related to the purchase of appropriate masks, hand sanitizer, and cleaning supplies. For worship guidelines and grant information, visit twkumc.org/covid-19-guidelines-grants/.

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Golden Cross Sunday 2020 to be Observed September 13

Dear Tennessee Conference Pastors and Congregations,

Together we are continuing to face an unprecedented situation. The global coronavirus pandemic is affecting us all — our families, our churches, our communities, and our way of life.

Yet the Golden Cross Foundation, with the aid of all things electronic, continues its mission of funding Tennessee Conference ministries and projects benefiting and serving older adults such as:

  • feeding ministries
  • housing ministries
  • transportation ministries
  • equipping and retrofitting church facilities to increase accessibility and use
  • medical and health services, including counseling

The Golden Cross Foundation receives no apportionments from Tennessee Conference churches. Instead, we are funded by private donations and endowments. We also depend upon your church’s Golden Cross Sunday special offering.

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ENCORE Ministry

ENCORE Ministry is a valuable resource that is available in the Tennessee Conference to help congregations meet the needs of the fastest growing demographic group in our conference.  And, because this ministry is funded by a grant from the Golden Cross Foundation, there is no cost to congregations or districts for its service.

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May/June Golden Cross Connections Now Available

To see the latest issue of Golden Cross Connections click here. To subscribe to the free enewsletter, contact gcconnections@goldencrossfoundation.org.

Alzheimer’s/Dementia: Ministry with the Forgotten

Alzheimer’s/Dementia: Ministry with the Forgotten

In 2009, someone was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or another other form of dementia every 77 seconds. Today, someone is diagnosed every 66 seconds.

For retired United Methodist Bishop Kenneth Carder, the statistics are personal. His wife, Linda, was diagnosed with frontal temporal dementia and he was called into a new vocation—that of caregiver for Linda. Out of that experience, Bishop Carder felt led to create a five-part study, Alzheimer’s/Dementia: Ministry with the Forgotten.

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Foundation Impact

Since spring of 2013, approximately 225 persons from all districts of the Tennessee Conference have been trained in older adult ministry through grants from the Golden Cross Foundation. Workshops will be scheduled for fall 2020.

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Application Guidelines

Golden Cross Foundation funds six broad areas of older adult ministries in the Tennessee Conference.

Apply for a Grant

Give to Golden Cross

It’s easy to make a gift to the Golden Cross Foundation. All gifts are tax deductible.

Ways to Give

ENCORE Awards 2019

The 2019 Encore Ministry Awards were presented to five churches in the Tennessee Conference. The awards ceremony was held during the dinner sponsored by the Golden Cross Foundation June XX, 2019 at the Tennessee Annual Conference at Brentwood United Methodist Church.

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A New Book and Church Resource by Dr. Richard H. Gentzler, Jr.

An Age of Opportunity book coverAn Age of Opportunity by Dr. Richard H. Gentzler, Jr., Director of ENCORE Ministries, provides church leaders with information on how to grow and sustain their ministry into a truly spectacular, creative, and visionary model that will serve the church.

Published by Discipleship Resources (May 2018), you can order your copy today through the Upper Room Books at 1-800-972-0433 or at Bookstore.UpperRoom.org


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Belmont UMC

“Celebrating the Ageless Spirit” was a very successful planned weekend event for senior adult (age 55 and above) who are members of Belmont United Methodist Church and five neighboring UM Churches. The May 2-4 event nurtured, informed, inspired and celebrated senior adulthood. Weekend activities included fellowship through shared meals and conversations: learning through workshops on Physical fitness; good nutrition and healthy eating habits; maintaining spirituality during the aging process; keeping the brain active; and worship experiences. Barbara Bruce from Rochester, NY, a Christian educator and author of books on brain fitness for older adults, was the featured keynote speaker and main leader for the event. The weekend will culminated withsenior adults being celebrated and actively involved in Belmont’s morning worship service on May 4. Leadership included Starr and Jim Strickland, co-chairs, Belmont UMC Senior Adult Ministry Council and an excellent committee of volunteers.