Archives for December 2013

Recently Read: With Trayvon Martin, this Nativity gets edgy update

Claremont UMC had a different take on their nativity scene this year: Nativity scenes have a few standard elements: a manger, swaddling clothes, happy parents, sheep, maybe the Three Wise Men. They don’t generally include Trayvon Martin. But there he is, wearing a hoodie, a stream of blood pouring from his chest onto the straw-covered […]

Walden’s Words: What are you giving?

Editor’s Note: UMR Columnist Ken Walden submitted this article for publication earlier in the month of December, however due to technical difficulties on our part we missed getting this up at the appropriate time. We apologize for the delay and hope that you will check out  Christmas is a time for giving.  It is […]

Recently Read: Serving as a denominational bishop in a post-denominational culture

Our friends at Faith and Leadership posted an article by Bishop Ken Carter on being a denominational bishop in a post-denominational world earlier this month. Even though it’s been up a while, it’s worth the read. Carter writes: Denominational bishops in the United States represent the continuity and catholicity of the church in an increasingly […]

Wesley Bros: Get’cha head in the game

Click on image to enlarge I once interviewed for a youth-ministry position at a large church.  I asked them how many lay volunteers I would have when I started working.  Without any irony, that chair of the committee said, “That’s why we’d hire YOU, so we don’t have to volunteer any more!”  I did not […]

Recently Read: For Hmong Christians, cultures mesh comfortably

Jean Hopfensperger of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune wrote a great story about the Wheelock UMC in St. Paul during this Christmas season: Walk into Wheelock United Methodist Church, one of about 25 Hmong Christian congregations in the state, and it’s easy to see the cross-cultural connections. Energetic children in the back pews, waiting to participate in […]

A Christmas Blender

Jeremy Schulz, Director of Music Ministries for Point Pleasant UMC in Elk Grove, Calif. wrote and created this short film for an Advent worship service focused on building community. His reflections explore the true and commercial meanings of Christmas, and what that means when the church steps outside of its walls, into the world. Another […]

Global mission leader calls for peace in South Sudan

by Melissa Hinnen “Please join me in praying for our brothers and sisters in South Sudan, our world’s newest nation,” Thomas Kemper, who leads the United Methodist General Board of Global Ministries, said today in response to the political violence that erupted in South Sudan. “It is imperative that all who have voice and power in the […]

Frank Schaefer appears at Foundry UMC

Washington, D.C. —  On Dec. 19, Frank Schaefer of the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference was defrocked. Three days later he was back preaching, this time at Foundry United Methodist Church in Washington, D.C., encouraging the Reconciling Congregation to keep struggling for marriage equality and the right of United Methodist pastors to marry same-gender couples. “It is […]

Recently Read: Why I Don’t Do Christmas

Krista Tippett. the host of National Public Radio’s On Being show and a long time commentator on religion, writes on why she dislikes Christmas these days, and how she will be doing things differently this year: Here’s what I take seriously. There is something audacious and mysterious and reality-affirming in the assertion that has stayed alive for […]

Wesley Bros: Worship Wars

Click on image to expand Music in an intergenerational church is tricky.  People have vastly differing opinions on what is beautiful, and what music moves them.  TOO BAD say Wesley and Luther.  Music is meant to draw us towards God, yes, but the truth of Scripture and the power of the Holy Spirit in worship […]