November 26, 2013

"The newcomers joining our churches, most aren't coming to a Methodist house of worship to find God. They're coming to a church that lights their soul, whatever strain it might be." - Ken Garfield, director of communications at Myers Park United Methodist Church, Charlotte, N.C.

The Billy Graham I know - and why he matters

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (UMNS) - As the Rev. Billy Graham passed the milestone of 95 years, Ken Garfield, director of communications at Myers Park United Methodist Church, writes, "There's much that organized religion can learn" from the famous evangelist. Garfield covered Graham while a religion reporter for the Charlotte Observer.
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Making church more welcoming at Christmas

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) - Outreach at any time of the year takes time, patience and persistence, but especially at Christmas. United Methodist Communications offers some tips on how to reach more people during the Advent and Christmas seasons.
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After fire, Arkansas church trying to get ready for Christmas

HICKORY PLAINS, Ark. (UMNS) - Parishioners at Hickory Plains United Methodist Church are working hard to make sure their church is ready for Christmas services, reports. The Hickory Plains fire, ignited by lightning, destroyed the church May 30, 2012.
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Church fires: Damage, recovery, prevention

Central Texas Conference breaks ground on new center

FORT WORTH, Texas (UMNS) - The Central Texas Annual (regional) Conference broke ground Nov. 15 on a conference service center, which will be on the campus of United Methodist-related Texas Wesleyan University.
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History of Hymns: 'We Gather Together'

DALLAS (UMNS) - The Pilgrims likely never sang this hymn so closely associated with Thanksgiving. But this Dutch hymn celebrating Protestant independence from Catholic Spain carries a sentiment Christians everywhere still recognize: "Sing praises to His Name; He forgets not His own." C. Michael Hawn shares the hymn's colorful history.
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Remembering C.S. Lewis

HOUSTON (UMNS) - The Rev. Chappell Temple, senior pastor of Lakeview United Methodist Church, offers his remembrance of Lewis, the beloved novelist and author of Christian apologetics. Lewis died on Nov. 22, 1963.
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Read how a United Methodist church celebrated Lewis' legacy

CNN blog on health care features United Methodist pastor

MEMPHIS, Tenn.(UMNS) - CNN talked to the Rev. Shane Stanford, senior pastor of Christ United Methodist Church in Memphis, about the expansion of Medicaid, part of the Affordable Care Act. Stanford, who is HIV-positive because of hemophilia, advocates for the expansion - which a number of states, particularly in the South, are declining to take part in.
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Former United Methodist missionary honored in Rome

ROME (UMNS) -The Rev. Gerald "Jerry" Anderson, emeritus director of the Overseas Ministries Study Center in New Haven, Conn., met Pope Francis, gave a lecture and received an honorary Doctor of Missiology degree on Nov. 14 from the Pontifical Urbaniana University in Rome. The degree was presented to him by Cardinal Fernando Filoni, the grand chancellor of the university. It was the first time an honorary degree has been given to a Protestant by this university that was founded in 1627 and is owned by the Sacred Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples. Anderson, a former United Methodist missionary in the Philippines and president of Scarritt College in Nashville, is a retired member of the Western Pennsylvania Annual (regional) Conference and resides in Hamden, Conn.

Publishing House lays off two executives

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) - Neil Alexander, president and publisher of the United Methodist Publishing House, has announced that two executives who have made substantial contributions to the work of the publisher for more than a decade will be leaving Dec. 31. Ed Kowalski, senior vice president of marketing and sales, and Alyce Meadors, vice president of human resources, will end their full-time employment.
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Developer backs out of purchase of Publishing House property

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) - Neil Alexander, the president and publisher of the United Methodist Publishing House, announced Nov. 25 that the developer TVG Holdings LLC is not able to proceed with the purchase of the Publishing House's property at 201 8th Ave. in Nashville. "We will now pursue other options," Alexander said.

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