Door open to Southern Baptist Scout groups

United Methodist Men have a message for Scouts: If they no longer have a home at a Southern Baptist church, United Methodist congregations would be happy to welcome them. The Commission on United Methodist Men oversees Scouting ministries and civic youth-serving agencies across the denomination. “Our office has already received notices of invitation from local churches and […]

Furor over block to gay clergy candidate

Updated on 6/11/2013 Members of the Southwest Texas Annual Conference, who met June 6-9 in Corpus Christi, faced the question of whether a lesbian can be a certified candidate for ordained United Methodist ministry. More than 200 United Methodists and other Christians took to Twitter on the afternoon of Friday, June 7, to protest Mary […]

Church vitality – Exploring what it means, how to keep it going

To determine whether a congregation was doing well, church leaders used to count just two things—bottoms in the pews and dollars in the plate. Now many United Methodist leaders believe those metrics are not good enough. People and money do not capture whether a church is truly doing the vital work of making Christian disciples, […]

How old is too old to join UM clergy?

The Texas Conference of the United Methodist Church has proposed changing its minimum standards for clergy to discourage people over 45 from becoming candidates for ordained ministry. The conference’s board of ordained ministry is seeking feedback through September this year and does not plan to make any final decision on its standards until October. But […]

UMs offer and find support after Boston Marathon bombings

  Evil struck on Monday, April 15th, but by Tuesday it was clear evil did not have the last word. United Methodists in Boston and around the globe testified to the ways they saw God in action after two explosions shattered the peace of the Boston Marathon, claiming at least three lives and leaving more […]

Two United Methodists recognized by White House as `Champions of Change’ for solar project

Two United Methodists have taken an idea for bringing light to people living in darkness from their church altar to the White House in less than a year. Doug McNeil and Jesse Salem — both members of Los Gatos UMC in California’s Silicon Valley — are being honored Friday, April 5, at the White House […]

Rehabilitating the reputation of Mary Magdalene

  You’ve got to feel bad for Mary Magdalene. Sure, she has fame many of today’s celebrities would envy. She’s played a leading role in works ranging from Renaissance paintings to just about every Passion play and movie made about Jesus’ life. But all that stardom has come with a price. Few other followers of […]

Church: No weddings till UMC changes homosexuality stand

Leaders of a United Methodist congregation in Winston-Salem, N.C., have decided not to hold weddings in the church building until the denomination lifts its ban on same-sex marriage. Green Street UMC announced publicly March 17 that its 18-member leadership council also has asked its pastors to refrain from signing marriage licenses until North Carolina recognizes […]

Presley’s Methodist moment – Elvis shared space with church agency in 1956

NASHVILLE, Tenn.—By the start of 1956, Elvis Presley and his recording career had found a new place to dwell. It wasn’t at the end of Lonely Street, but in a building bustling with Methodists. Presley at that point had only regional hits to his name. The giant RCA Records had gambled on the young singer […]

How churches can play role in dating, marriage

NASHVILLE, Tenn.—Matthew Oates and Jennifer Dobbs were born a few months apart in the same hospital. They grew up a few miles apart in southern Indiana; they even went to the same orthodontist. But they never met. They both attended Purdue University from 1996 to 2000, and while there, were involved in various United Methodist […]