Images of UM Fracture

By Thomas Lambrecht – The current focus of our denomination is rightly on how to do effective ministry in the midst of a pandemic and how to understand and address racism in our nation and in our church. For most of our pastors and leaders, there is not much bandwidth left to keep abreast of […]

One Step Back

By Thomas Lambrecht – How do Christians deal with discouragement? Some parts of the United States, as well as some other countries around the world, have recently seen an uptick in the number of Covid-19 cases, with increased hospitalizations and deaths. The increases have led governments to pause steps to reopen the economy and, in […]

The Future of Pastoral Training

By Thomas Lambrecht – In a ground-breaking development, Baylor University in Waco, Texas, this week announced the formation of a Wesley House of Studies at its Baptist-oriented Truett Theological Seminary. Dr. William J. Abraham has been named the inaugural director to establish this new center of pastoral training at a Division-I university reaching students from 90 […]

Accountability

By Thomas Lambrecht – “Accountability” is one of the key watchwords of our contemporary era. Greater accountability is being demanded of politicians, police officers, and other public servants. How do we in the civilian arena hold those with power and position to the high standard of honesty, integrity, and justice? What powers and responsibilities should […]

Finding God in a Crisis

By Thomas Lambrecht – Winston Churchill is alleged to have remarked, “never waste a crisis.” It has long been said that the Chinese characters for the word “crisis” signify both danger and opportunity. If we focus too much on the danger, we can miss the opportunity that is hidden within the crisis. The process of […]

Lord give us eyes to see

“What a season we have been through and what a week we are in,” wrote Bishop Gregory V. Palmer of the West Ohio Annual Conference. “The angst and pain are palpable. I need you to know I share that pain and I see me in some way shape or form every time I see video […]

The Role of Conferences in the New Methodism

By Thomas Lambrecht – “Conferencing” is at the heart of Methodist history and tradition. In 1744, only a few years after starting the Methodist movement, John Wesley called together the small group of preachers who formed the core of the movement for a “conference” meeting. They gathered to discern “how we should proceed to save […]

An Eternal Perspective

By Thomas Lambrecht – In times of crisis, people often turn to God. There is some anecdotal evidence that is happening now with the coronavirus pandemic. Bible downloads in Google Play and App Store exceeded 2 million in March, the highest total ever for the month. Attendance at the on-line Alpha Course doubled at Holy Trinity Brompton […]

Human Plans and the Coronavirus

By Tom Lambrecht – I am a planner. I like to have at least a rough plan in mind for any undertaking that I am part of, whether it is a work project or a trip to the beach. I get that from my Dad, who was a high school band director and needed to […]

Observations from a “Town Hall”

By Tom Lambrecht – The coronavirus pandemic has caused a lot of disruption in our lives, in how our country functions, and in how our churches function, as well. Nowhere was that in greater evidence than in a May 5th “Town Hall” meeting held online by Mainstream UMC, a “centrist” advocacy group within The United […]