UM pastor Mark Holland elected mayor of Kansas City, Kan.

The Rev. Mark Holland, a United Methodist pastor, has been elected mayor of the unified government of Kansas City, Kan., and Wyandotte, Kan. Dr. Holland, pastor of Trinity Community (United Methodist) Church, won with 56 percent of the vote in Tuesday’s election. “It’s an overwhelming sense of gratitude,” he said when asked by phone today […]

A pastor reflects, post-Easter, on the difference between `invitational’ and `missional’

By Ben Gosden, Special Contributor… Easter Sunday. It’s the day of the year when even the people who hate mornings will gather at ungodly hours to stand on a lawn, in a field, under a canopy, or maybe in a parking lot to watch the sun rise and hear a few words about resurrection. Easter […]

UM pastor on pre-Easter double slayings: ‘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 […]

`Rites & Remedies’ – Edgy seminary exhibit shows the Bible transformed

Paul Roorda haunts flea markets, thrift shops and eBay, looking for Bibles no one wants any more. When he gets them, he often burns them. If he doesn’t do that, he might drive a nail through the pages, so they can’t be opened. Other times, he’ll cut each page into strips, then fold those into […]

Closing time – Cokesbury staff, patrons facing stores’ final days

DALLAS—Julie Chapman doesn’t really have time for sentimentality these days, given that she’s following a six-page email on how to close the Cokesbury store here. The going-out-of-business sale is underway, and Ms. Chapman, as store manager, is charged with selling just about everything, including bookshelves, before the doors lock for good on April 20. Still, […]

Q&A: UMPH head provides update on closings

The United Methodist Publishing House’s decision to close all 57 Cokesbury stores last fall made big news beyond Methodism. Some stores have closed already, and the rest will be shuttered by April 26. Reporter managing editor Sam Hodges asked Neil Alexander, UMPH president and publisher, for an update. Mr. Alexander answered questions by email. Were […]

New church starts up in U.S. and abroad

The United Methodist Church exceeded goals for starting full-fledged churches and other worshipping communities, both in the U.S. and internationally, according to reports from two of the denomination’s agencies. The General Board of Discipleship said annual conferences started 684 churches in the United States from 2008-2012—34 more than the goal. “We want to celebrate the […]

UM clergywoman is a ‘first’ at National Cathedral

The job of arranging a memorial service for the first man to walk on the moon fell, in large part, to the first United Methodist to serve as worship director for the Washington National Cathedral, in Washington, D.C. The Rev. Gina Campbell worked behind the scenes to make sure that the Sept. 13, 2012 farewell […]

Q&A with Kent Millard

Under Brad Stevens, the Butler University men’s basketball team has built an amazing record, twice reaching the NCAA Finals in a field of much bigger schools. Coach Stevens and his wife Tracy are active members at St. Luke’s UMC in Indianapolis, Ind. The Rev. Kent Millard, retired pastor at St. Luke’s, has co-written with Judith […]

UMM leaders, citing negative reaction, ask BSA to hold off on gay policy change

Top leaders of the General Commission on United Methodist Men have written the Boy Scouts of America, citing strong negative response within the denomination to a proposed lifting of the ban on gay scouts and scout leaders. Gilbert Hanke, top executive of United Methodist Men, and Bishop James E. Swanson Jr., UMM president, wrote Chief […]