GCFA Celebrates General Counsel Lambert


The board of directors of the General Council on Finance and Administration met July 18-19 in Dallas for its summer meeting.  The board celebrated the service of General Counsel Steve Lambert, who is retiring in August from the general counsel position.  Lambert has been with GCFA since 2014 and was instrumental in guiding the Legal Services Department and the agency through changes that improved the unit’s efficiency and effectiveness throughout the denomination. Bryan Mills was elected as ...

Group Drafts Separation Plan for Denomination


The United Methodist Church’s conflict over homosexuality is irreconcilable and calls for amicable separation into different denominations, according to a 12-person group of centrists, traditionalists and progressives that began meeting in late June. “We’ve discovered The United Methodist Church can’t live in the same house together peaceably, but we can live next door to one another,” said the Rev. Kent Millard, president of United Theological Seminary and one of the group’s organizers. ...

GC Commission Will Tighten Credentials Following Task Force Review


The Commission on the General Conference voted this week to implement new registration and credentialing procedures for General Conference delegates to safeguard against the possibility of unauthorized voting.

FTC Warns of Gift Card Scam Aimed at Worshipers


The Federal Trade Commission issued an alert on July 29 about a new spin on gift card scams. The alert said: “This time, scammers are pretending to be a pastor, rabbi, priest, imam, or bishop. They’re asking worshipers for gift card contributions for a worthy cause. Appeals are often made by email, but we’ve heard people are also getting texts and phone calls, too. The bogus emails often include the name of the local pastor and a legitimate looking email address. But a closer look should raise ...

Bishops Urge End To White Supremacy, Xenophobia


In the aftermath of the mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton, Ohio, Council of Bishops President Bishop Ken Carter is calling for United Methodists to help end white supremacy and xenophobia which he says is fueling the culture of violence. In a response released August 6, Bishop Carter commended the statements of Bishop Gregory Palmer and Bishop Earl Bledsoe to the people of their residential areas in West Ohio and New Mexico/Northwest Texas, respectively, noting that the carnage following ...

Ways United Methodists Can Take a Stand Against Gun Violence


When we hear the tragic news of a shooting, United Methodists mourn with the victims and families of those wounded or killed. We turn to God in prayer, longing for a day when violence will cease. In addition, many people consider what actions we might take to prevent something similar from happening in the future. So, what can we do? Click here to read a feature by Joe Iovino to get started and then check the other links below. Gun violence 101 Cheat Sheet: This new resource for ...

Mass Shootings Prompt Prayer, Action


After two U.S. mass shootings that killed at least 31 people, United Methodists are responding with both prayers and plans for action to address gun violence and hate.

Council of Bishops Invites Applications for 2 Ecumenical Programs


WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Council of Bishops of The United Methodist Church is inviting applications for the following programs:  2020 Local Initiatives Grants Scholarship to Attend The Ecumenical Institute at Bossey  2020 Local Initiatives Grants The Council of Bishops is offering three (3) grants of $1,000 each to groups within annual conferences for special projects designed to strengthen ecumenical and/or interreligious relationships. Preference will be given to groups within annual ...

Court Docket Reflects Busy Conference Season


Reaction by United Methodist regional bodies in the U.S. — as well as the Council of Bishops — to the Traditional Plan adopted by the 2019 General Conference dominates the fall agenda of the denomination’s top court. The Judicial Council has an 18-item docket to consider when it meets Oct. 29-Nov. 1 in Evanston, Illinois. Aug. 19 is the deadline to submit briefs and make requests for oral hearings. Two items are from the United Methodist Council of Bishops regarding questions about legislation...

Bishops Call for New Ways of Embodying Unity


CHICAGO – The bishops of The United Methodist Church will seek to strengthen annual conferences in 2019 through the ministries of sending and missional strategy, Bishop Kenneth Carter, president of the Council of Bishops, has said. In a statement released at the end of the Executive Committee meeting outside Chicago on July 17, 2019, Bishop Carter said: “Our primary work is not legislative or legalistic. In this season, our primary calling is to discover new ways of embodying unity through ...

Gardens Connecting Churches and Community


Community gardens are cropping up all over the New York Conference. Part food supply, part learning experience, and part exercise in caring for God’s creation, the gardens feed body and soul, and help connect church with community.

2 Bishops Offer Plan for Denomination's Future


DALLAS (UM News) — Bishops David Bard and Scott Jones propose making The United Methodist Church an umbrella organization for new, self-governing church groups that would offer different approaches on same-sex unions and ordination of gay clergy.

Slavery Anniversary Leads to New Discussions


In August 1619, about 50 people from Angola arrived in Jamestown, Virginia — the first African slaves in what is now the U.S. Four hundred years later, African Americans still struggle with the onerous remains of that legacy.

Church Members Called to Support those in Peril


The federal government is issuing fines of up to $500,000 to some immigrants living in sanctuary churches as they fight deportation. Currently, nine United Methodist congregations are serving as hosts. The United Methodist Immigration Task Force is urging all church members to support these persons by praying for them and sending postcards expressing support. The denomination’s Board of Church and Society, Board of Global Ministries and United Methodist Women have joined in this call.

How Accurate are Church Membership Numbers?


Church membership data plays a critical role in denominational decision-making, but the numbers come with uncertainty. Heather Hahn explains how church leaders gather the information and the role it plays.

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