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Why Vital United Methodist Congregations Matter

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By Amy Valdez Barker
But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. 1 Corinthians 12:24-26 I’ve been thinking about the Body of Christ in the expression of The United Methodist Church a lot lately.  I know many think of this all the time and others rarely contemplate its existence, let alone the church’s affect on the world.  However, maybe like a few, I am feeling the urgency in the matter of considering WHY we should be the Body of Christ through The United Methodist Church as we face the reality of declining participation in the mainline Protestant faith traditions.

There is no question about it, the U.S. culture has shifted rapidly in the past thirty years. There have been significant changes in attitude towards and participation of p…