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Commentary: We must recognize we are engaged in a cultural war

*by Bishop Scott Jones We are all horrified by the terrible violence committed in Paris the evening of Nov. 13. We should be praying for the victims and their families and for the people of France who suffered this evil action. At the same time, we must pay attention to the larger context in which […]

10 Reasons Why United Methodists Should Ignore the Republican Governors

By Rev. Dr. Wes Magruder* How about that backlash, eh? The general goodwill that has been building the last few months toward Syrian refugees all but disappeared faster than you can say, “Bon jour” after the horror in France over the weekend. Apparently, compassion is one of the first victims of terrorism. Add a mixture […]

Commentary: Jesus was a Refugee

*by Mike Slaughter When they had gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. “Get up,” he said, “take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going to search for the child to kill him.” –Matthew 2:13 Recent heart-breaking pictures […]

Commentary: Christian Discipleship for Dummies

*By Dan Dick I was in conversation with some of my colleagues about the state of The United Methodist Church. We each took a Post-It® Note and wrote what we thought was the most pressing need/critical issue facing the church. Most of the notes were about declining numbers — not enough new members, not enough […]

Homeless in the Yard

*by Irene TenEyck, Editor’s Note: On September 16 The United Methodist Reporter shared a local news story on the Wesley United Methodist Church’s struggles with their homeless ministry. After talking with the pastor of the church and learning about some of the mischaracterizations of their work in that story, we invited the church to report […]

Rev. Dr. Wes Magruder – Refugee images shook us awake. Now it’s time to do something.

*by Wes Magruder Last week, I delivered a sermon on the story of a Syrian immigrant who approached Jesus to heal her daughter. The timing was good, given that the world’s attention was focused on Syrians fleeing their country and seeking refuge. Jesus’ reply to the Syrian woman took me aback. Instead of warmly welcoming […]

United Methodist Polity: A Question

By Stephen Rankin* United Methodism’s current agonies uncover a deep problem related to our polity. Maybe it’s a good time, then, to ask a basic question. What does it mean for us United Methodists to live with a specific polity? To get at that question, let me tell you a story. I recently had a […]

Commentary: Seeking the expulsion of progressives from the #UMC

by Rev. Jeremy Smith* Editor’s note: Earlier today UMR published as response to the following article by Tom Lambrecht of Good News. We reprint Jeremy Smith’s original post in full with the permission of the author.   As culture embraces marriage equality, Conservative activists in the United Methodist Church are pushing out the perceived source of all things bad: Progressive […]

Commentary: Expelled from the United Methodist Church?

By Rev. Thomas Lambrecht* Recently, progressive blogger Jeremy Smith made the claim that “Conservative activists in the United Methodist Church are pushing out the perceived source of all things bad: Progressive Methodists.” Not only does Rev. Smith perceive an effort to “expel” progressives from our church, he also detects a trajectory changing who should leave the […]

Commentary: Local pastors deserve our full respect and support

by Mark Teasdale* I have just finished teaching my sixth year in Course of Study (COS), providing the required education for people to be licensed local pastors (LLPs) in The United Methodist Church. Over this time I have taught in two different United Methodist seminaries in different parts of the country. The LLPs I have encountered […]