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Congregational Development is a ministry of the South Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church – sharing the good news of Jesus Christ while seeking to extend and expand the Kingdom of God for the transformation of the world.

We strive to engage, encourage, equip, grow and revitalize Christ Church by being responsive and faithful to the Great Commission, the Great Commands and the Great Mission by reaching, teaching, equipping, growing and maturing disciples of Jesus Christ.

We create new places for new people and reimagine and resource ministries in our local churches. We strive to innovate and to be strategic in identifying needs for new church establishment and in resourcing and funding existing church needs.

What we do

  • Coordinate and collaborate with the Bishop, the Cabinet and Connectional Ministries for conference planning of re-formation of existing churches and the creation of new ones.
  • Provide training, demographic information and consultation to local churches and districts.
  • Coordinate with district boards of Congregational Development.
  • Assist local churches and agencies in identifying appropriate resources and funding sources from the districts and from agencies of the Annual Conference and the General Church.

General categories of new congregations:

African-American communities

Many South Carolina counties do not have an African-American United Methodist church, and some have only one. We seek opportunities to start new congregations in various places across the state.

Other ethnic minority populations

United Methodists in South Carolina face splendid opportunities to launch missional congregations and other ministries with Native Americans, with Hispanics and with Asian-Americans.

Challenged Areas

Our vision is that more and more people living in these areas of our state will a future with hope and be strengthened in the fellowship of new expressions of faith in new and existing congregations and gatherings of the people called United Methodist in South Carolina.

Fast-growing communities

As our state’s population increases and becomes more urban in various areas, South Carolina United Methodists face untold opportunities to start new churches in urban, suburbs, and coastal communities.

Established church response driven through:

District 20-Percent Funds

From every dollar given to the Congregational Development line item, 20 cents is returned to the district of origin. This is administered through the district committees on Congregational Development, and applications go through district offices.

Existing Church Grants

Each February, applications are reviewed and processed for Existing Church Grants from line-item funds. First deadline: Application must be emailed to your district office by November 1. Click here for more details and to download the application. (Download the pdf before filling it out.)



Intro Video

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Demographics &
How to Register


Here to help

Rev. James Friday

Director of Congregational Development

Laura Hill

Administrative Assistant

Rev. James Smith

 Chairperson, Conference Committee on Congregational Development