Q & R: Methodists leading the way
Here's the Q:
At the North Alabama Annual Conference you said there are Methodists leading the way in changing our church and getting us to a place that we are able to reach a younger, more educated generation. You said you would tell us who they were. I would like to know.
I am in the beginning of my ministry career and ordination process. I am passionate about justice and evangelism and I would love to find more people like me. Especially, if they are farther along!
Here's the R:
First, it's great to hear from an emerging Methodist leader who cares about both social justice and evangelism. That sounds like a great combination to me, and it reflects my own passions - as my books Everything Must Change and More Ready than You Realize make clear.
In my travels, I meet many truly impressive Methodist leaders - people like Dr. Elaine Heath, Bishop Grant Hagiya, Adam Hamilton, Dottie Escobedo-Frank, Mike Slaughter, Tracy Radosevic, and many others. Then there are networks of thoughtful, creative Methodists - like the Methodist emergent network - with leaders like Jay Vorhees. And there are so many Methodist scholars who are thought leaders for emerging forms of Christian faith, community, life, and mission - you'll find them at Wesley Seminary in DC, at Perkins, at Clarement, at St. Paul's, at Duke ... all over the country.
My advice, as you begin, is to spend as little energy as possible on traditional internal politics, and as much as possible finding and networking with creative people (within and outside Methodism), engaging in mission and reflection together.
By the way, I hope there will be a good UM contingent at Wild Goose this week!