Browsing: UMC Leaders

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0 6 Trends Revealed in 2018 Clergy Age Report

Lovett H. Weems, Jr., highlights some of the significant findings in the Lewis Center’s annual Clergy Age Trends Report. Of note is the modest downturn in recent years in the number of clergy under 35 as well as the number and percentage of young women clergy, following a decade of improvement. Download the 2018 Clergy Age Trends Report.   For over…

0 Young Clergy Effectiveness: Good News-Bad News

Data from the Lewis Pastoral Leadership Inventory™ (LPLI) suggest that younger clergy share many of the same strengths as their older colleagues and that they get high marks for their creativity and new ideas. The challenges seem to be sustaining that creative edge over time and translating new ideas into fruitful outcomes when it comes to worship attendance and discipleship…

0 5 Reasons the Church Still Needs Young Clergy

For many years the Lewis Center has monitored the presence of younger clergy in the church. Why do these trends still matter? Lovett H. Weems, Jr., and Ann A. Michel remind us that despite modest progress in the past decade, encouraging the ordination of more young candidates for ministry is just as important as it was when they first articulated…

0 United Methodism’s Unfinished Business

Recalling the sermon Albert C. Outler preached 50 years ago at the birth of the United Methodist Church, Lovett H. Weems, Jr., says that Outler’s hope for “a church repentant in order to be a church redemptive” is vitally relevant today in the face of the divisions currently plaguing the United Methodist Church. In recent weeks, much attention has been…

0 A Delta Moment in the Church

David McAllister-Wilson, president of Wesley Theological Seminary, posits the metaphor of a delta region to describe the dangerous yet fertile waters the church must navigate in our times. He sees a promising course in Methodists reclaiming their identity as progressive evangelicals believing in a personal God who expects things of each of us personally. The church in the U.S. is…

0 Methodism as an Experiment in Grace

David McAllister-Wilson sees the distinctive spiritual heritage of Methodism as something uniquely suited to our times — a legacy that cannot be sacrificed as the denomination considers whether staying together is the way forward. Our Genetic Legacy Living things thrive over time if they adapt and yet stay true to a basic identity. Why can’t humans fly? It’s because the…

0 The $6.5 Billion Enigma

On the first day of a new year, all United Methodist churches begin working toward their common mission “to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.” To achieve this mission, the United Methodist Church in the United States has: over 30,000 local churches with nearly 7 million members with thousands of clergy and lay leaders, and…

0 Who Should Follow a Founding Pastor?

The Lewis Center for Church Leadership conducted research across the United Methodist Church about “second pastors,” those who follow founding pastors. This project was commissioned by the North Texas Conference, and Jim Ozier from that conference does training on this topic. You may find the report at Findings about Pastors Who Follow Founding Pastors. Download and read report (PDF).

0 The Calling of an Annual Conference

When thinking about the appropriate roles for any part of the church, it is important to ask, “What is the ‘calling’ of this unit”? What is it that the entire church looks to this body to do, so that if it does not do it, no one else can or likely will? What are those things that no other group…

0 What’s at Stake when Schism is an Option?

Originally published Dec. 12, 2017. United Methodists are facing major decisions about our legacy and future in the coming months and years. Myriad actions taken over many past years have set up a classic win/lose situation, particularly regarding human sexuality, quite common in today’s politics but strangely out of character with the generous spirit of our Wesleyan heritage. Many United…

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