Arkansas Annual Conference

Mission and Ministry
People seeking shelter from snow and bitter cold are offered Holy Communion in the gymnasium at First United Methodist Church in Hot Springs, Ark. The church is operating the warming shelter in cooperation with the local Red Cross. Photo by Cindy English.

Churches serve as warming centers, shelters

With nearly 3 million homes without electricity in subfreezing temperatures, United Methodists come together to provide shelter, food, charging stations and other help.
General Church
The board of the General Council on Finance and Administration heard updates on how the spread of COVID-19 has strained finances and increased online worship. Offering box image by Jeff Jacobs, courtesy of Pixabay; coronavirus image courtesy of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; graphic by Laurens Glass, UM News.

Board gets update on giving, online worship

The board of the United Methodist finance agency reviewed the pandemic’s financial fallout and advice on counting online worship attendance.
Mission and Ministry
Custodian James Jimmerson disinfects pews to prevent any possible spread of the coronavirus at Belmont United Methodist Church in Nashville, Tenn. on Sunday, May 10, 2020, after online worship, which was recorded in the sanctuary. As churches consider returning to in-person worship, cleaning measures are one of many factors leaders will need to consider. “I believe my job, my part in this, is to make sure people are safe in here,” Jimmerson said. Photo by Mike DuBose, UM News.

Churches have much to consider before reopening

As many states’ shelter-in-place orders are being lifted, churches contemplate how — or whether — to return to in-person worship.
Mission and Ministry
Over 30,000 pounds of food provided by Feed America First is distributed to those in need in Wilson County, Tenn. Lebanon First United Methodist Church in Lebanon, Tenn. was able to restock its food pantry as well as help provide a week’s worth of food to over 350 families. Pictured are John Stephens and Laura Headley, members of Lebanon First United Methodist Church. Photo by the Rev. Ryan Bennett.

Prayers, donations help in aftermath of storms

March storms left behind lots of damage, but because of COVID-19, church leaders are urging safety first, cleanup later.

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