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Recently Read: The divided Methodist Church

This piece from The Atlantic captures the nuances of the debate within The United Methodist Church regarding human sexuality. It touches on the global nature of the denomination and the colonialism of Africa by the west, something I’ve heard several delegates mention this week. In a sense, as the piece says, our divide is one […]

Words from a Bishop: We are all holy and beloved

 Holy. Beloved. Valuable. These are the words Bishop Sandra Steiner Ball wants delegates to remember about themselves as they enter the final days of the 2016 General Conference of The United Methodist Church. “I see each person first as a child of God,” she said. “We are gifts to one another.” The bishop shared her […]

Multimedia: Immigration Rally

A collaborative effort featuring photos from Skyler Nimmons (Indiana Conference), Paul Jeffrey (United Methodist News Service), and audio from UMR managing editor Laura Harbert Allen. “It’s based on the mandate of Christ, to welcome the refugee,” said Bishop Minerva Carcano of the California-Pacific Conference. Today’s rally took place outside the Oregon Convention Center in downtown […]

News Analysis: Who is the “We” at General Conference?

“We are winning!” “We are losing.” Rev. Jason Valendy, reserve delegate to General Conference stood outside a legislative committee room. He had hoped to observe the election of officers inside, but seating space for non-members was limited, and fire marshals ordered him out of the space. One woman slipped out briefly, and as she came […]

Divorce and Remarriage in American Methodism: The evolution of church positions from 1884 to 2012

By Dr. Rex D. Matthews I am currently engaged in research project that intends to trace the broad contours of the evolutionary change of American Methodist positions concerning divorce and remarriage and to set the story of that change in the larger context of changing attitudes toward divorce and remarriage in American culture and society. […]

Mystic Chapel: An example of a ritual use review

By Taylor Burton Edwards* Introduction I’ve had hymns, hymnals and congregational singing on my mind a lot over this past year or two. We at Discipleship Ministries and the Publishing House had been in negotiations since 2014 about bringing a proposal for a new hymnal to General Conference this year. We’ve come to agree on […]

The debate that changed the church: 60 years of clergy rights for women

by Rev. Clayton Childers, GBCS On May 4, 1956 the General Conference of the (then) Methodist Church meeting in Minneapolis, Minnesota did something amazing. It changed the church’s book of Discipline to support full clergy rights for women. And the church has never been the same since. Despite much resistance and fears about what this […]

What United Methodists believe about gun violence

Click picture to download and share. Find out more about the United Methodist position on gun violence at http://www.umc.org/what-we-believe/gun-violence

Why should we give thanks?

by Kimberly Winston (RNS) Thursday is Thanksgiving, the annual food fest that sometimes devolves into a food fight. So if the conversation around the turkey starts to get a little heated — “Why aren’t you married yet?” “Who are you voting for?” “Refugees, anyone?” — grit your teeth and keep in mind: The impulse to […]

Court defers review of ‘Plan UMC Revised’

By Linda Bloom Oct. 26, 2015 | ST. LOUIS (UMNS) A ruling on the constitutionality of legislation for a proposed organizational plan for The United Methodist Church has been deferred until May. To make a declaratory decision about one specific piece of proposed legislation, the United Methodist Judicial Council said in Decision 1303, “could intrude” […]

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