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Showing posts from November, 2013

Rev. Harald Rückert: Why I Choose the United Methodist Church

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The UMC in Germany – as in all other European countries – is a minority church. The Lutherans and Catholics are dominating in the public. Methodists, Baptists and others in Germany are small Christian churches, and were often suspected to be a sect.

My parents and grandmother were Methodists. They were proud of it and felt at home in this community. Unfortunately our church was located on the other side of town and therefore I could not participate in the children’s programs very often. Instead I went to the children’s Sunday School class of the Lutheran Church and became a boy scout in the YMCA – both just around the corner from where we lived. But in spite of that, there was no doubt: I am a Methodist!

This feeling became stronger when I entered the confirmation class in our Methodist Church. I found friends. I was invited to the trombone choir and had the opportunity to learn the trumpet. I was trained to lead a children’s group. I was allowed to play music with some friends on Su…

Rev Tim Rogers: Why I am a United Methodist

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The United Methodist Church has been God’s agent of change in my life.  We frequently hear that we should get out of our comfort zone in order to grow.  Well, I like my comfort zone.  I am not happy when I have to leave it.  I am a small-town boy who resents change.  Little did I know that by answering the call to ordained ministry, and choosing to stay in the denomination I grew up in, that I had signed up for a lifetime of change.

I doubt that my experiences as a United Methodist pastor have been unique.  My first appointment came when the phone rang unexpectedly during my middler year in seminary. Two of my appointments have been to places that I could not identify on a map beforehand.  One was to the one place I told my wife we could never be appointed to.  One came with a question from the cabinet: would I like to? My answer: no I would not.  I served that appointment for seven years. I signed up to serve as a United Methodist clergy with the expectation that I would tend the fait…

Bishop Jeremiah Jungchan Park: Why I am a United Methodist

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Once a Methodist, a Methodist forever. That’s how I was born and raised. My father was a Methodist pastor in Korea and I was a Methodist before I was born. My Christian identity has never been separated from my identity as a Methodist in Korea and now a United Methodist in the U.S. it will never be.

I am a United Methodist because I affirm the spirituality, theology, practice, and tradition of Methodism. I wholeheartedly embrace the evangelistic zeal for making disciples of Jesus Christ and the missional passion for transforming the world. I believe in a healthy balance of personal holiness and public and corporate witness to social holiness, holding the two in harmony and tension. I believe in discipleship as a process. No one has arrived. As a disciple of Jesus Christ, everyone is on a journey of faith with God and with one another. All of us are encouraged and challenged to continue to grow, expand, and change in the understanding and practice of discipleship. I also believe in th…