How does Central UMC serve our neighbors, community and world? We are so glad you asked! Below you will see all the many things we are doing or have done to meet the physical and spiritual needs of the world. We invite you to join us!

Central’s Trustees are always looking for ways to maintain and improve the wonderful facilities for our members to enjoy and to continue the many ministries we offer. Trustees, along with Staff are also looking for ways our members can be involved and to participate. We are asking for input from the Congregation. We (Trustees) would like to organize several task forces/committees to help. Starting out, we want to put the following in place:

Grounds and Landscape

Currently, Marilyn & Bill Henshaw and Kitty Williams oversee the general Maintenance and care of our landscape. They are rotating off of this committee, but will help with the transition of a new team. New members will oversee a landscape contractor, help schedule needed maintenance and share ideas to enhance our landscape.

Set up

Central’s Bereavement Committee provides a beautiful reception for families at a time of loss. Set up is an important part of this reception. A rotating group is needed to assist with set up (placement of tables and chairs in Fellowship Hall) on an “as needed” basis. A call list would be available for the group to work closely with the Bereavement Committee.

Snow and ice removal

Central does not have a set plan when we need snow/ice removal. Central is responsible for the steps and parking lots but our sidewalks must also be addressed in case the City of Shelby isn’t able to treat/remove the snow/ice. Trustees would like to have a call list of folks to help with this ministry when the need arises.

Church office volunteer

Occasionally, volunteers are needed in the office to fill in when our secretary is out of the office for sick days or out of town on vacation. Gina will be holding a training session soon to let volunteers know what they will need to do when serving in this capacity.

The best part of the above is that any and all members at Central can plug in where they feel they can help! If you are on the list for one of the above, it would be on an “as needed” basis. If you are interested in signing up, please contact Gina in the church office or Will Rucker, Trustee Chair.

Thank you for considering this ministry.

Central United Methodist-Shelby Trustees


Calling All Adults, Our UMYF Need YOU!

How many of you remember what you vowed the last time we had a baptism? It went something like this: "with God's help we will proclaim the good news and live according to the example of Christ. We will surround them with a community of love and forgiveness, that they may grow in their trust of God, and be found faithful in their service to others. We will pray for them, that they may be true disciples who walk in the way that leads to life." Well, now that these little infants have grown up a bit (ok, maybe a lot), they still need you to surround them with a community of love, to show them what being faithful in service looks like, to help them grow in their trust of God.  Now, here's how you can fulfill you vow--sign up here to help during UMYF meetings on Sunday evenings. You won't regret it for your reward will be great!

Hurricane Disaster Response

Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria have affected millions of people with multiple days of heavy rain, winds, and rising tides. The United Methodist Church is actively present, working with local and state emergency management, FEMA, and other volunteers active in disasters. There are ways you can help respond to these disasters:      

Pray. Pray for all of those impacted by these disasters as well as the Early Response Teams, disaster coordinators, and the many volunteers who are working tirelessly to provide relief.

Make a financial donation. Please make your check out to the church indicating “Disaster Response” and we will make sure it gets to UMCOR (United Methodist Committee on Relief). Remember 100% of your donation goes directly to relief with no other costs taken out for overhead, promotion, etc. or you can donate online at

Cleaning kits and hygiene kits are needed. These may be brought to the church and we will transport them to the Mission Response Center in Terrell, NC. On October 1st, World Communion Sunday, we joined together in the PAC immediately following Worship and put 200 hygiene kits and 25 cleaning buckets together. Thanks to everyone who helped!

Wait to Volunteer. This will be a long term recovery event and there will be many volunteer opportunities in the months and years to come. Stayed tuned and we will update you as the opportunities become available.

Already an Early Responder? Invitations have started to come in. So far Badged ERTs have been invited to serve: South Georgia (contact Luis Morales), Louisiana (sign-up here) and Texas (teams, individuals). You may want to think about joining Special Advanced Early Response Teams. Our conference is taking applications to join one of the it's special Advanced Early Response Teams. There’s a role for everyone. Advanced Conference Teams are open only to ERTs and accepted individuals will receive additional training. Apply here

  • Conference ERT. Current ERTs are encouraged to apply to our conference basic Early Response Team. To qualify, you simply need a willing heart, a current badge, and general availability. 
  • ERT-T (Tree Service). These team members specialize in the removal of trees after a disaster. You must have a chain saw training certificate to apply or receive such a certification prior to being accepted. 
  • ERT-C (Chaplain). These team members specialize in chaplaincy after a disaster. You must have proof of some form of Mental Health Emergency Training.
  • ERT-W (Water & Wind). These team members specialize in water and/or wind restoration after flooding or severe wind damage. This includes tarping, mucking, and advanced ERT skills.
  • ERT-M (Management). These team members specialize in site assesment and site management. You must have a keen sense of disaster awareness and management experience.
  • ERT-F (Food). These team members specialize in feeding survivors and early response during the early stages of a disaster.
  • ERT-V (Vessel). These team members specialize in rescue with the aid of a motorized boat, raft, ATV, snorkled 4x4, or heavy construction equipment. You must have access to a vessel and appropriate training and licensure for such use.
  • ERT-SR (Search & Rescue). These team members specialize in the search and recovery of victims. Proof of training through fire service, rescue, EMS, law enforcemenrt, or military is required. 


Walking in the steps of Jesus at Yo Quiero Ser Orphanage


Happy faces were found at Yo Quiero Ser Orphanage in Honduras when Steve Smith and Jay Wilson delivered the 46 pairs of shoes YOU donated.  Thank you to the UMYF for spearheading this campaign and to Steve and Jay for delivering them in person! Check out the write up in the January 25th Newsletter available here.














Local Missions at Central cover a wide range of community services. Support for Hospice and James Love Elementary School are on-going yearly church-wide projects. CUMC also provides facilities for Boy Scout and Girl Scout programs. Each year, two scholarships are given to the Boys and Girls Clubs of Shelby. Our Feed the Hungry hot lunch program provides two full lunches every week including a special Christmas Day feast. Habitat for Humanity and Inter-Faith Alliance Men’s Shelter are served under local missions. Central also holds four blood drives per year. Take a look and see where you might be interested in serving. More information is available by calling 704-487-6336 or emailing [email protected]

Newborn Visitor Committee

The purpose of the Newborn Visitor Committee is to make a visit in the home of babies born to church members. We present a small gift to the child on behalf of the church. In addition, we typically take a gift of food. We offer support to the family and let them know the church is thinking of them during this time.

Hot Lunch Program

Central has offered a hot lunch program for the hungry since 1985. The program serves on Tuesdays and Saturdays. Lunch is served between 11:30 and 12:30 pm.

As members of Metrolina Food Bank, most of our food is given to us or purchased at minimal cost. Supplemental items are purchased with donated funds. Advertisements in the church newsletter help us collect other necessities. Kitchen help is always welcome.

Pastor’s Discretionary

Through the generous gifts of our members, Pastor’s Discretionary Funds are made available to assist members and non-members in need in our community. Individuals are not assisted at this location, but through screenings of local agencies such as: United Way, Salvation Army, the Greater Cleveland Baptist Association, Inter- Faith Alliance, Abuse Prevention Center, DSS, and other trusted agencies. These agencies call us with referrals for individuals in need.

We have helped individuals with emergency assistance for medication, utilities and various other needs. We do not help with refundable deposits, bus tickets, motel stays, or short-term fixes that do not help individuals meet long term solutions. Our goal is to represent Christ in our community one individual at a time by being good stewards of these resources given to us to distribute.

Disaster Response

Central has teams who respond to natural disasters anywhere in the United States. These teams respond to requests from home owners through their home churches and will travel to these locations and stay in the host church. Because we have a large trailer, we can handle almost any building request. Our team has traveled to disaster sites in North Carolina, Tennessee and Mississippi. Both men and women serve on the disaster team

Handyman Ministry

The Handyman Ministry takes care of small jobs and home repairs for senior members of CUMC who may be unable to perform these jobs safely themselves. Church members furnish all necessary labor and share costs of materials if necessary. Jobs are matched to the volunteers’ skills. A member needing the repair calls the church office and the request is passed along to a team member.


kairosKairos is an interdenominational ministry designed to be conducted in state and federal correctional institutions. The program is presented in cooperation with the facility chaplain using teams of laity and clergy who are specially trained and certified as “citizen volunteers”. The program is set up for small groups who are encouraged to share, pray and give personal witness. This is a continuing ministry which meets weekly and establishes a strong Christian community within the prison setting. For more information, check out the official website at

Foreign Missions

Individual members of Central respond annually to building requests in 14 countries. This work involves building churches or building onto church property. Some teams will also repair older or damaged churches. Our WNC conference is one of the most active conferences in the US which offers help to churches in Jamaica, Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico and other countries. Trips usually last from 10 to 14 days. Skilled or semi-skilled members are led by a WNC conference team leader. The team members must raise their own money.

We also have Medical Teams formed by the conference who provide medical care to countries in need.

Bereavement Ministry

The Bereavement Ministry of CUMC is composed of seven teams of church women whose purpose is to help and support the bereaved family in the event of the death of one of our church members. These women provide both physical and spiritual nourishment and are available to assist the family in making careful decisions regarding meals and visitation.

Sharing a family meal can be very comforting during a time of grief and our bereavement teams will provide a meal for up to 25 people. The food will be brought to the home of a family member or friend either before or after the service. It will arrive warm and ready to be served and will also include plates, cups, beverages and utensils.

Or, instead of a meal, we offer a reception in the Fellowship Hall of the church. The reception may be held either before or after the funeral or memorial service and is an easy way for the bereaved to visit with their guests. We provide an array of finger foods and punch served in a setting of formal tables with the option of a separate table or two upon which to display memorabilia of loved ones.
Central United Methodist Church as well as the Bereavement Ministry welcome memorials as a way for friends and family members to remember their loved ones. These gifts are blessings for the church and may be designated to the ministry of your choice. In the event that you are undecided, the church office will be happy to guide you in selecting which ministry you wish to be the recipient of your memorials.

Soup Group

soup-group-photoSoup Group started in 2016 as a way to expand our ministry to members of Central UMC who are 65 years of age and older. Once or twice a month Soup Group meets in the church kitchen to cook soup and fellowship with each other. Soups are bagged, labeled and frozen for future use. Throughout the month members of Soup Group not only deliver frozen soups but visit with those who may be dealing with stressful situations and/or simply need to feel celebrated and appreciated. It’s a wonderful opportunity to expand our witness as we serve and fellowship with our seniors.


Serve at Church

There are many small ways to serve during the week.

Sundays:                                                                                                                                                                                              Be a Greeter                                                                                                                                                                                        Serve in the Nursery—Contact the office 704-487-6336

Wednesday afternoons:                                                                                                                                                                      Help prepare newsletters for mailing. Contact Gina Blanton at [email protected] or 704-487-6336

Saturdays 10am-1pm:                                                                                                                                                                         Help setup, serve and clean up at Hot Lunch Ministry in PAC.


Support our Schools

Share God's Love with a Student in our Area:

Backpacks for Shelby Middle School Students
         Volunteer opportunity:
  Pack on Mondays, Wednesdays; deliver to the school on Fridays, order/pick up food
         Time required: 30 minutes/week

James Love Elementary Tutor
          Volunteer opportunity:
one on one tutoring for second graders
          Time required: 
one hour/week

PTO nights
           Volunteer opportunity: decorate, serve food
           Time required: 
2 hours/event

Click HERE for more information.

Pray for one of Central's Students: Another great way to participate in the ministry of Central is to partner with one of our many youth in Prayer and Encouragement.  We are looking to team up one student with one adult from our congregation to help build cross-generational relationships and to encourage a stronger investment in our church family for both the teen and the adult.  If you would be interested in participating in this, please email Nick at [email protected].

Share God's Love with our Homebound

A great way to participate in the ministry of Central is to share your love and care with those who are unable to attend each week for various reasons. These individuals would love to hear from their church family: whether it be a phone call, card, or visit. Click here to email the church office and request the Homebound List.

Prayer Shawl Ministry

This ministry began in September, 2006 as a means of reaching out to those who are hurting or grieving, those who are facing serious surgeries, those who are experiencing major life changes or end of life issues, and men & women in the military. The ministry has also expanded to include new brides, as well as infants, youth or adults who receive the sacrament of baptism.

Because this is a spiritual practice, before beginning the knitting or crochet process, the Shawl Maker’s Prayer is offered to dedicate the work of the hands and to offer up a prayer for the unknown recipient. Participants are also encouraged to work on their project as part of their daily devotional time. This ministry is currently looking for participants and a coordinator. If you are interested please contact the church office at 704-487-6336.

Prayer Teams

Central is a praying church. Prayer is a vital part of everything we do. Prayer requests are accepted during Sunday services and other times by contacting the church office. The Prayer Team meets in the Prayer Room on Mondays at 11am.

The Prayer Team and the church staff are honored to lift up prayer requests daily for as long as needed. Prayer requests, except those marked “private”, are then shared with our Prayer Partners.

All prayer requests are kept confidential within our prayer circle. No prayer requests are considered too small or too large. Our God is able!

Prayer Chain Ministry

This ministry is one of the quickest ways to communicate prayer requests to others in the church. The church secretary emails requests (with the exception of private requests) to a designated person in each Sunday School class. This person forwards the request to other class members. If someone does not have email, a phone call is made. There are times when a person wants to keep the request private. At that time, only the staff and Prayer Team are notified. All requests are kept confidential.

Community Outreach

Central UMC is also involved in and supportive of many different organizations within our community.  We encourage participation in any and every opportunity that fits your gifts, talents and interests. Click here for more information about Habitat, Hospice, Cleveland County Rescue Mission, the Red Cross, and our local schools.