Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Hosting a Guest Speaker

Here are a few suggestions for hosting a guest speaker:

- Explain what you’re hoping for them to do in advance. I’ve been to many places that asked me to speak once. When I arrive, they ask if I’ll do more. While I’m happy to, knowing in advance is a great advantage. Be clear about your expectations so you’re guest speaker can serve your church well. If you can give guidance on what you’d like them to talk on, time constraints, other information can be helpful.
- Maximize their time. If a speaker needs to rest, give him time to rest and prepare. If she is available to invest in others and has the energy, set up a time for your staff to interview her. If you want to get to know him and he loves golf, plan to play 9 holes. If he has to come in and leave immediately, honor his time constraints.
- Cover their travel costs when possible. If they’re driving, give them some money for gas. If they are flying, cover their expenses.
- Make arrangements for an overnight stay. If they have to stay overnight, some will want to stay with you others have no desire to stay in a home. Put them in a hotel room if they desire.
- Small things make a big difference. Some ministries will pay an honorarium which is a generous way to say “thank you” for being away from home to minister. Other small things mean a lot. I’ve had several churches get a gift for my wife or all my kids to say “thank you.” That meant more to me than money. Providing snacks is small thing that makes a difference after traveling.

[from : swerve by Craig Groeschel]

Free Tax Webinar for Pastors

Pastors Only - Free Webinar on Clergy Tax Issues

A free webinar, The 20 Most Common Tax Mistakes Made by Ministers, presented by Richard Hammar, LL.M., CPA, is available at Click on "Free Samples" and look for the title.

Clergy and church treasurers will find helpful information on how to handle Social Security taxes, special gifts, expenses, and other matters related to the compensation of ministers. Also, a tax packet for United Methodist clergy is available at

Direct link:

[From Dr. H.E. Cardin - Tomlinson Center]

Death Notice - The Rev. Amos Joshua Creel

[June 25, 1919 - February 10, 2009]

The Rev. Amos Joshua Creel, age 89, of Rome, GA passed away Tuesday morning, February 10, 2009, at his residence.

Rev. Creel was born in Dora, AL on June 25, 1919, son of the late Rev. Chester V. Creel and the late Pearl Carlisle Creel. He was also preceded in death by a son, Alan Creel, by a sister, Betty Love (long-time Alabama COGOP pastor), and by a brother, Homer Creel.

An ordained minister in the Church of God of Prophecy, Rev. Creel was ordained as a Bishop in 1947. He served as Pastor, State Overseer, and Evangelist all over the United States and overseas during his ministerial service of over 70 years. He retired from Pastoral Ministry in 1990, following 8 years as Pastor of the Church of God of Prophecy in Dawsonville, GA.

Rev. Creel was attending the North Rome Church of God in Rome, GA at the time of his death.

Survivors include his wife, the former Dorothy Louise Reese, to whom he was married on January 1, 1947; a daughter, Mrs. Donna Brooks, and her husband, Rev. Bert Brooks, Rome; a son, Rev. Darrell Creel, and his wife, Joy, Rome; 3 grandchildren, Ms. Linda Creel, Nashville, TN, Mrs. Beth Kline, Lithia Springs, and Nathan Creel, Rome; a great grandchild, Piper Kline, Lithia Springs; 2 sisters, Ms. Zella Creel, Cleveland, TN (long time personal secretary to COGOP General Overseer M. A. Tomlinson), and Mrs. Oneeta Andrews, Harriman, TN; nieces and nephews also survive.

Funeral services will be held on Wednesday evening, February 11, 2009, at 7:00 PM at the North Rome Church of God with Pastor Harold Jones, Mr. Creel's son-in-law the Rev. Bert Brooks, and COGOP General Overseer Randall Howard officiating.

Interment services will be held on Thursday, February 12, 2009, at 11:00 AM at the graveside in Rome Memorial Park.

The family will receive friends at the North Rome Church of God on Wednesday evening from 5 until 7pm. At other hours, they may be contacted at each of their respective homes.

Henderson & Sons Funeral Home, Rome, GA has charge of the funeral arrangements.

On a personal note, my mother (Ruby Brock) was the same age and close friends with Brother and Sister Creel. Bishop Creel served as Overseer of Alabama while my Mom was pastoring in Alabama. That makes the Creel children, Darrell and Donna, about my age. We worked together in youth camps many of my developmental years - memories I will cherish forever.

Bishop Creel's sister, Betty Love, was one of my Mom's fellow-pastors in Alabama when women pastors were not fully appreciated. They were close comrades. Zella Creel was an icon in the International Offices of the Church of God of Prophecy for many years. She dedicated her life in support of the ministry and leadership of M.A. Tomlinson.

This entire family had a positive impact on my life and ministry. I could relate many colorful stories about A.J. Creel, including the first tri-state camp in Mentone, Alabama. But on a serious note, I will forever remember and appreciate the leadership and encouragement this family provided for me and mine. My prayers are with the family. I will be at the funeral, and I will miss him dearly.