Blog Posts

"Going Jesus" on your community

Nathan D. Stanton


After this there was a Jewish festival, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.  In Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate in the north city wall is a pool with the Aramaic name Bethsaida. It had five covered porches, and a crowd of people who were sick, blind, lame, and paralyzed sat there.  A certain man was there who had been sick for thirty-eight years.  When Jesus saw him lying there, knowing that he had already been there a long time, he asked him, “Do you want to get well?”7 The sick man answered him, “...

At the Well Christmas Party

Shane Hinderliter


Wichita church reaches out to youth in foster care kids Many people look forward to spending time with family during the Christmas season. Teenagers in the foster care system don’t always have a family to call their own. That’s where the United Methodist Church at the Well, in Wichita, steps in. For several years, the church has hosted a Christmas party for teenagers in the foster care system. Also invited are young adults, ages 18-21, who have recently aged out of the foster system. They are ...

Coffee and church


Urban Abbey hosts a coffee house with no strings attached “Why would you give money away?” The reporter looked astonished as he continued, “Couldn’t you just keep it for your own church?” He is right, I thought. We could keep it for our own ministry and we do need it; but that is not who we are or at least who we are trying to be. I explained that faith is about generosity. We are part of a tradition of giving of time and energy. We are founded on the principles that all we have is God’s and ...

Corn, camp and community

Sara Shaw


Camp Fontanelle experiences community in unique ways Camp Fontanelle, near Nickerson, Neb., (Fremont is the next largest town), experiences community in a unique way in its rural setting in eastern Nebraska. Each fall the camp hosts a corn maze, pumpkin patch, zip-line, laser tag, archery and more, as activities open to the communities in the area. While it’s a major fund development project for Camp Fontanelle, Trent Meyer, the site director says it’s built community in so many ways. “While ...

Garden of Feedin'


Garden produce creates relationships, helps families with food sustainability Oakley, Kan. — The community garden sponsored, planted, and cared for by the Oakley United Methodist Church was a vision of one member who brought that vision to others. The vision caught on and became a reality in the spring of 2012. With that vision Monday mornings became a time when all volunteers gathered for devotion and prayer time.        It was decided to organize the community garden with very few rules to ...

High school lunch goes ecumenical


Cimarron, Kan., UMC joins with the community to reach out to high school youth Wednesday lunch for high school students in Cimarron, Kan., has a special flavor, thanks to a community ministry begun in the 1990s. Through a cooperative arrangement with the school district, students may walk the five blocks to Cimarron United Methodist Church, where a group of women has prepared a home-cooked meal for as many as 120 students. The meal is served family-style by the pastors in the community, ...

Want to read more on connecting with your community?


If you or a group in your church would like to read more about connecting with your community, here’s a bibliography of books our staff has found helpful. Perhaps one would be a good study for your church council or mission team. Everyone Communicates, Few Connect, John C. Maxwell, Thomas Nelson publishers, 2010.  This is a book for those wishing to improve their ability to connect with others in many different context. It’s described as a practical, step by step guide for relating better. The...

Traveling home


We rose before 6 a.m., and following breakfast said our goodbyes to our cooks Tina, Gladys and Falza. Mrs. Thomas came by as well to wish us safe journies. Bishop Johnwesley Yohanna let us use his truck and his driver for our road trip from Jalingo to Yola to catch the first leg of our flight. Benji accompanied us and we arrived in Yola about 9:30 a.m., to learn that our 11 a.m. flight was moved to 1 p.m. It's only an hour and half flight to Abuju. Pastor Matthew Dangombe met us again and helped...

Working with the children and geering up for the trip home


After a good nights rest, Mrs. Thomas came and made us her special pancakes for breakfast — awesome. Benji arrived and we ate together before going to the orphanage.   Our first activity of the day was to have a leadership meeting with the Benji (director), Magdiel (head master) and Shehu (senior master). We worked on team building and ended it with prayer by the Rev. Jim Miller.   Jim then went to the bookstore with Magdiel to buy student workbooks and some books for their library. Dorothy and ...

More than 20,000 gather for UMW Nigerian Central Conference revival


The women's revival went late Saturday so Sunday morning arrived quickly. We were off to the Sunday worship at the revival right at 8 a.m.   The women were already singing when we arrived. You could tell that many had left the night before to go home. However, there still remained many women to celebrate their work together. Many were gathering in the center of the arena circle singing and dancing praise songs.   The morning scripture was Roman's 8, but it was presented all in Housa so we can't ...

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