Centering the United Methodist Church on Christ

Images of UM Fracture

The current focus of our denomination is rightly on how to do effective ministry in the midst of a pandemic and how to understand and address racism in our nation and in our church. For most of our pastors and leaders, there is not much bandwidth left to keep abreast...

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One Step Back

How do Christians deal with discouragement? Some parts of the United States, as well as some other countries around the world, have recently seen an uptick in the number of Covid-19 cases, with increased hospitalizations and deaths. The increases have led governments...

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The Future of Pastoral Training

In a ground-breaking development, Baylor University in Waco, Texas, this week announced the formation of a Wesley House of Studies at its Baptist-oriented Truett Theological Seminary. Dr. William J. Abraham has been named the inaugural director to establish this new...

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Accountability

"Accountability" is one of the key watchwords of our contemporary era. Greater accountability is being demanded of politicians, police officers, and other public servants. How do we in the civilian arena hold those with power and position to the high standard of...

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Finding God in a Crisis

Winston Churchill is alleged to have remarked, "never waste a crisis." It has long been said that the Chinese characters for the word "crisis" signify both danger and opportunity. If we focus too much on the danger, we can miss the opportunity that is hidden within...

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The Role of Conferences in the New Methodism

"Conferencing" is at the heart of Methodist history and tradition. In 1744, only a few years after starting the Methodist movement, John Wesley called together the small group of preachers who formed the core of the movement for a "conference" meeting. They gathered...

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An Eternal Perspective

In times of crisis, people often turn to God. There is some anecdotal evidence that is happening now with the coronavirus pandemic. Bible downloads in Google Play and App Store exceeded 2 million in March, the highest total ever for the month. Attendance at the...

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Human Plans and the Coronavirus

I am a planner. I like to have at least a rough plan in mind for any undertaking that I am part of, whether it is a work project or a trip to the beach. I get that from my Dad, who was a high school band director and needed to plan everything from rehearsal schedules...

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Observations from a “Town Hall”

The coronavirus pandemic has caused a lot of disruption in our lives, in how our country functions, and in how our churches function, as well. Nowhere was that in greater evidence than in a May 5th "Town Hall" meeting held online by Mainstream UMC, a "centrist"...

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The Myth of “Progress”

One often hears that Methodism used to believe the "wrong" thing about slavery, the ordination of women, and the affirmation of same-sex relationships, and that Methodism moved to believe the "right" thing about slavery and the ordination of women, leading the way to...

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