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The Kingdom of Heaven is (Still) at Hand

by Rev. Rebekah Simon-Peter Yes, Donald Trump won the presidential election. No, not everyone is happy about that. Clinton won the popular vote while Trump won the electoral vote. Plenty of people are having to adjust their ideas of the next four years. Like many people I was surprised, even discouraged, at the election results. My […]

What’s NEXT?

by Jeff Greenway As a person who was baptized, saved, discipled, called, married and ordained under the ministry of The United Methodist Church, the events of the last couple of years have given me pause to wonder “What’s NEXT?” for our denominational Connection. The years leading up to the 2016 General Conference were marked with the usual […]

Living in the tension of an ever widening circle.

“You are apostate.” “You have caused division.” “You have begun schism.” “I wish hell for you”. “You have broken my church.” “You have voted to Secede.” “You are in open rebellion.” “You are the spouse that has broken the marriage vows and will not stop.” These are just a few things that clergy “friends” of […]

How to Love ISIS

by Brian Snyder Depending on your political persuasion, it is the common thinking that the Islamic State was born out of some combination of the overthrow of Saddam Hussein, the Arab Spring, the Syrian civil war, and weak U.S. leadership in the region. But ISIS was around long before the Iraq war, before the founding […]

Commentary: Going back to the graveside

by Steve West* The United Methodist Church I love so dearly is navigating rough waters. Recently, our Western Jurisdiction (comprising the churches of 12 western states) stepped out in nonconformity against denominational rules on ordination, marriage, and sexuality. Naturally, some consider this a courageous act of progress, while others consider it a major violation of […]

Commentary: Church at the speed of life

*by Rebecca Simon-Peter Last week, Karen Oliveto, the first openly gay bishop of the United Methodist Church was elected. Much like at her baptism, she was consecrated with the laying on of hands and sacred words of declaration.   She has even been appointed to her place of service for the next four years. This is […]

Five evangelical + inclusive ways to resist schism in The United Methodist Church

by Trey Hall* I am a Wesleyan evangelical. My life has been saved and is (slowly) being changed by Jesus. In my opinion, being evangelical means, at its core, living from an ongoing internal assurance of God’s love for you and therefore finding yourself freed to do everything possible to carry the Gospel to others. […]

Preaching To Confront Racism

By William H. Willimon Moralism (substituting law for gospel, exhorting better human behavior without dependency upon God’s grace) is no match for racism. While urging us to preach justice, Lutheran James Childs warns: “Preaching that always goes directly from sin to salvation or from cross to resurrection without ever stopping off at sanctification is missing […]

What Can I Do? I Can Love!

by Darian Pace If someone says, “I love God,” but hates a Christian brother or sister, that person is a liar; for if we don’t love people we can see, how can we love God, whom we cannot see? 1 John 4:20 New Living Translation My heart aches, my soul tormented. There is a sense […]

What to say, what to do

by F. Willis Johnson* I am a pastor, in New York City with my wife, on a few days of summer leave. Over a 24-hour period my phone, social media channels and email blew up. Your attention was arrested too. My colleagues and clergy friends are frustrated and fearful. We want to talk, and then […]

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