Archives for April 2015

Hays to Step Down As Dean of Duke Divinity School in 2016

News from Duke Divinity School: Duke Divinity School Dean Richard B. Hays today announced that he will conclude his term as dean at the end of the next academic year, June 30, 2016. He will take a research leave during the 2016-17 academic year and then return to his position as professor of New Testament […]

Grace is the Best Incentive

Some months ago, I received repeated “invitations” to register college students for a church “leadership” event. As the sponsoring organization counted down days prior to the gathering, a boatload of “incentives” was offered. There were potential prizes for those who registered early, discounts, and even points for joining the online discussion during the weekend. So […]

Memorial Fences – The OKC Bombing, 20 Years Later

9:02 a.m. On April 19th, 1995 at 9:02 a.m., I was in keyboarding class at Putnam City High School, about 8 miles away from downtown Oklahoma City, knowing nothing of what madness was just unleashed from a yellow Ryder truck at the Murrah federal building. Our class kept on increasing our words-per-minute on our QWERTY keyboards, […]

Panel Offers Pastors Advice on Becoming ‘Ministers of Reconciliation’ in African-American Communities

ORLANDO, Fla. (RNS) Christian ministers should establish relationships with law enforcement, seek ways to become moral authorities in their communities and listen. Those were the top recommendations from experts at a panel sponsored by The Gospel Coalition on Tuesday (April 14) titled “Seeking Justice and Mercy From Ferguson to New York.” The popular ministry offered an alternative […]

Rahway Church Not Letting Ceiling Collapse Deter Services

Union United Methodist Church, Greater New Jersey Conference, ceiling collapsed around 2pm on Easter Sunday. Bishop John Schol released a public letter with details of the event and calling for prayer for the congregations affected by the roof collapse. The two congregations meeting at the church, Elim United Methodist Church and Manantial de Vida Church, […]

Affirmation is Not a Civil Right, and It Cannot Be Coerced

WASHINGTON (RNS) The limiting of religious freedom is a perpetually contested question in American public life. Most recently, as states consider new laws and the U.S. Supreme Court prepares to rule on same-sex marriage, gay rights supporters and traditionalist Christians appear to be on a collision course. To make matters worse, whenever disputes between gay […]

5 Things to Watch as the 2016 Campaign Gets Underway

(RNS) As presidential candidacies multiply and campaigning accelerates, we can expect much tawdriness to occur. These are difficult times in American democracy. Money will pour into negative campaigning and ideological posturing. Lies will become the norm. Every word will evoke counterattack, and facts will lose their currency. Barbed sound bites will be mistaken for wisdom. […]

Churches Gather for Prayer, Unity After Charleston Man Shot By Police Officer

This originally appeared in the South Carolina United Methodist Advocate by Jessica Brodie. Reprinted with permission. NORTH CHARLESTON, South Carolina—United Methodist churches in South Carolina’s Lowcountry are calling for peace, advocacy, and prayerful healing after a police shooting left an unarmed Charleston man dead. North Charleston Officer Michael T. Slager has been charged with murder after […]

‘Grace Notes’: The quiet unshakable faith of Hillary Clinton (COMMENTARY)

Hillary Rodham Clinton at the United Methodist Women’s Assembly 2014 WASHINGTON (RNS) Late on a Saturday night in 2012, I received word from my sister in Mississippi that my mamma had passed away. My home was silent as my wife and two boys slept upstairs. I was reading when the sad call came. I woke my […]

Ross named to new vital congregations position at Discipleship Ministries

NASHVILLE, Tenn.  — The Rev. Vance P. Ross has been named to the new position of director of annual conference relations/annual conference strategist for vital congregations at Discipleship Ministries. Ross, who is senior pastor of Gordon Memorial United Methodist Church in Nashville, will begin his new assignment on May 11. “We are excited to have Vance […]