Bishops ‘get act together’ in San Diego meeting

  Active bishops of the UMC wrapped up their meeting in San Diego on Thursday, emerging with no action items or joint statements, but insisting the time had been fruitful. The sessions at The Catamaran Resort Hotel & Spa were not open to the press, though the bishops did invite press coverage of a visit they made […]

Retired UM pastor faces possible church trial for officiating at gay son’s wedding

A new, high-profile episode in the United Methodist Church’s struggle over homosexuality has emerged, with a retired UM pastor and Yale Divinity School dean, the Rev. Thomas Ogletree, facing a possible church trial for presiding at the wedding of his gay son to another man. The UMC’s Book of Discipline forbids clergy from officiating at same-sex […]

Bishop’s book draws on faith, leadership theory, martial arts

Greater Northwest Area Bishop Grant Hagiya earned a third-degree black belt in karate, as well as a master of divinity and a doctorate in organizational leadership. His new book Spiritual Kaizen: How to Become a Better Church Leader (Abingdon Press) draws on this varied background. Bishop Hagiya answered questions by email from managing editor Sam […]

Rabbi speaks again, thanks to Perkins School of Theology archivist

The prophetic voice of a late Dallas rabbi, one who had close ties to Southern Methodist University, will be heard again, thanks to a curious archivist who wasn’t content just to file away some reel-to-reel tapes he found in a library storage room. SMU’s Perkins School of Theology will, on May 5, hold an event […]

George W. Bush Presidential Center dedicated at SMU

The George W. Bush Presidential Center at Southern Methodist University was dedicated this morning in Dallas, with President Barack Obama and all living former presidents and First Ladies attending. A large crowd, including Bush administration alumni, family members of former presidents and numerous foreign dignitaries, gathered outside in mild weather by the $250 million facility, a new anchor for the east […]

Dream come true – Minnehaha UMC kept faith with affordable housing project

If anyone wants to know how long a major mission project can take, and how much satisfaction can be derived at the end, Wanda Driver is a good one to ask. She helped kick off Minnehaha United Methodist Church’s effort to do something big in affordable housing. She stood by beaming when the Riverview Apartments, […]

Bishops to hold second straight private meeting

When active United Methodist bishops gather in San Diego, May 5-8, that will be the second consecutive large gathering of bishops closed to the press and other visitors—a move that is prompting criticism within the UMC. The Council of Bishops, including retirees, met in private in November at St. Simons Island, Ga. In announcing that […]

Pastor on pre-Easter tragedy: ‘Evil is not the last word’

The Rev. Keith Head’s last Easter before retiring as a United Methodist pastor proved tragically memorable, as he had to address the slayings of a prominent couple in his congregation—a case that has made international news. Mike McLelland, district attorney of Kaufman County, Texas, and his wife Cynthia, were found shot to death in their […]

New hope for Christian ashrams movement

The term “Christian ashram” sounds arrestingly odd, if not downright implausible, along the lines of “Buddhist revival” or “Muslim camp meeting.” But Christian ashrams have been around since 1930, when E. Stanley Jones (1884-1973), the great Methodist missionary, preacher and author, adapted a spiritual renewal practice he encountered in India. At their height, when Jones […]

`Rio Texas Conference’ to be name of unified Southwest Texas and Rio Grande Conferences

The unified Southwest Texas and Rio Grande Conferences of the United Methodist Church will go by the name “Rio Texas Conference.” The team charged with implementing unification of the conferences chose the name in a unanimous vote on Wednesday, and announced it today. Byrd Bonner, a Southwest Texas Conference layman and co-chair of the Unification […]