South Sudan Wrap-Up
The privilege of helping the Gospels to come alive for these guys, and to plan and lead worship together with each other, to talk about early Christian theologians that came from North Africa and to help them tackle some of the ministry challenges they face, was pure joy and privilege. Their faithfulness was inspiring as none of these pastors are paid and most struggle to find work to supplement their family's income. But God uses them in powerful ways. We take so much for granted here in the U.S. The way we waste food is a travesty when just to have meat with their meals is a real treat. We take for granted having clean water in abundance for whatever we need- when we would treat it much differently if the women in our families had to walk a few miles to fill up a 4 gallon container and walk with one on her head and two in her hands several times a day. We complain about paying taxes in our country but trust me, if you lived in South Sudan you would gladly pay some taxes if the government could provide roads as good as ours. The power goes off at midnight in Yei, South Sudan where we are. The temperatures were up to 107 degrees during the day. We really should be ashamed at what we complain about or take for granted most days. And the church. Seeing what their churches were trying to accomplish with so little resources. We squander the precious resources we have and fail to impact our communities in ways that truly matter like they are able to do. I know that is a generalization but the difference is profound. And it makes some of our squabbles seem so petty when we stop to look at the Kingdom Work we are supposed to be about. So I challenge you to take the blessings and resources and conveniences you have been given and maximize them for God's Kingdom. Not your best interest. Not even the best interest of the church. But for the purpose of transforming lives for Jesus Christ. Lory Beth Huffman shared this by email with all of her clergy in the Appalachian District and through a link to their Facebook page Hear more about the trip on Connect that aired on 3/18/15
Resources for Vital Congregations
GBHEM Leadership Resources
A Disciple’s Path; A Guide for United Methodist
RESOURCES TO CONNECT WITH THE COMMUNITY:
The Appalachian District Church Vitality Team has been prayerfully seeking ways to help support you and the ministries of your local congregation during this COVID-19 pandemic. Together they have diligently researched and connected with others throughout the conference and our denomination to identify resources and offer them to you. We hope they will be helpful to you and bless you greatly in leading your churches and communities through this unprecedented time. We are very grateful to the District Vitality Team and other contributors for their great work on this resource.
This faithful team has created three documents, two of which you are receiving today. They include:
- Family Home Worship – designed to help families establish a regular worship space within their homes as well as a time where they can worship together.
- Tech Strategies – to help guide you in selecting effective tools and resources within your budget to best communicate in the digital world.
We believe these resources will be of great benefit to you. Also know that the District Vitality Team is available to answer any questions you might have in regards to the documents attached. If you have questions, you may email Rev. Howard Fleming at firstname.lastname@example.org.