eNews  · July 26, 2023
On August 28, 1963, 250,000 people assembled in Washington, D.C., to stand up for civil rights and racial justice. This important day in American history featured stirring music and inspiring remarks, including Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King’s unforgettable “I Have a Dream” speech. On Aug. 27, UMs may participate in two back-to-back events to honor the 60th anniversary of The March on Washington. A worship and musical celebration will take place at First UMC at the Chicago Temple, 77 W. Washington St., Chicago, at 1:30 p.m., followed by a rally and march across the street at Daley Plaza at 2:30 p.m. 

How do small congregations affect their communities' economy? The Lewis Center asked Bob Jaeger and Rachel Hildebrandt of Partners for Sacred Places about their report on the “Economic Halo Effect of Rural United Methodist Churches in North Carolina.” Watch the video to consider the similarities in your ministry site.  

One meaning of the word “religion” is “relinking.” Our religion connects us with God, neighbors, and the world around us. This six-part series explores how UMs seek to sustain and renew our links to the living world. The articles can be a great conversation-starter for youth and adult groups. Many people are interested in the importance of maintaining the natural world. Consider inviting the neighbors to a gathering on caring for the living world and using these as discussion starters.

A plan to put the various geographic regions of the UMC on equal footing has received key endorsements from the UM Connectional Table and Standing Committee on Central Conference Matters. The proposal, which may go to General Conference next year, would create a U.S. regional conference and transform the central conferences (outside the U.S.) into regional conferences; all would have equal authority. At present, no structure exists to deal with matters solely related to the U.S., and the international UM General Conference ends up focusing mostly on U.S. issues. Also unlike the U.S., central conferences may adapt the Book of Discipline to their contexts. Some believe a regionalization plan is urgent, because the standing committee is drafting a new General Book of Discipline.

Are you struggling to reach all the kids in your class? Do some kids thrive while others disrupt? Do those with learning differences get lost in the background? You may find cookie-cutter lessons hard to implement with your group. It may be time to rethink the Sunday School classroom. This three-week online course will prepare you to transform your classroom in a place that engages children in multiple ways of knowing and invites the Holy Spirit into their learning experience. Learn at your own pace from July 31 to Aug. 19. Read more.

Marketing isn't about sales. It's about understanding your neighbors and using the media and messages that speak most effectively to them. The basic principles of marketing apply across the board and are scalable to your church's resources and membership size. Read more.
A Congolese man who emerged out of slavery to become an evangelist was honored at the recent North Katanga UM Annual Conference for his role in spreading Methodism. Born in 1869, Banza Lubange Kaluwashi had been taken by Arab slave sellers and brought to Angola. There he became a Christian and eventually was freed. He trained as an evangelist at a pastoral school in Angola and started mission work in Kapanga village in Congo. He planted many churches in the region. Sangaji Mujinga Albertine, a Kaluwashi granddaughter, described Kaluwashi as “a man of great faith.” His family hopes to continue his mission by constructing more churches, schools and hospitals in his name.

Using illustrations from Sally Lloyd-Jones's The Jesus Storybook Bible, this series of DVDs for preschool to early elementary children includes ten to twelve short Old Testament or New Testament Bible stories. Borrow from the list to see if these might work well for Sunday school this fall.

Find the online catalog here. To contact the center, send a message to [email protected]. 
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