Showing posts from August, 2008

united methodist committee on relief (UMCOR)

continuing the sermon series on global issues addressed by a global church, i highlighted the outstanding ministry of umcor. to learn more about this vital agency, visit here are a few pictures that highlight some of umcor's work:

umcor in kenya

the aftermath of the devastating earthquake in china earlier this year.
refugees in georgia, fleeing russian aggression. umcor has been active in georgia for years.
umcor is not supported by apportionments, money each congregation contributes to the broader church to support ministries around the world. annually churches participate in one great hour of sharing, which helps umcor's administrative efforts.

A Do-over?

please note: this is my sermon from last sunday. i post it here as a way of beginning the discussion related to topics raised in the current sermon series.
Today we begin a new sermon series called “For the Healing of the Nations,” taken from one of the hymns in our hymnal.Obviously the series will focus on the world, specifically the issues confronting the global church, the global community, and the global economy.The series has roots in a survey I sent around to the congregation back in May.One of the questions asked members to rank what is most important to them in the church: things like fellowship, Bible study, worship experience.I was shocked to see that 48% of those who participated ranked world-wide missions dead last.I was shocked because I would rank it at or near the top.One thing I love about being a United Methodist Christian is that I am part of a church with a global outreach.The timing of the series could not be better.If you have not heard, the Olympics are under…

where was God?

late last night a bus carrying vietnamese Christians from houston, en route to the Marian days festival in missouri, crashed in sherman, texas. so far fourteen people have died, many more seriously injured. our hearts break and go out to the families who have lost so much. looking at this from the outside, one would have to assume that if anyone would have God's protection against such a tragedy, it would be these people, on a religious pilgrimage. unfortunately it did not turn out that way. not even the most faithful of us can avoid random occurrences such as this.

the first thing many of us-- persons of faith and not-- will do upon hearing such terrible news is to ask "how could God allow such a thing to happen?" some may even conclude that this is further evidence that faith is a joke, and the Bible nothing more than a coffee table book of fairy tales. i can understand that. i myself have often questioned God when faced with grave injustices, whether personally…