Finch Preaching Mission meets 57th year with Elaine Heath leading


elaine-heathMemorial United Methodist Church in Thomasville, NC is hosting the Finch Preaching Mission for its 57th consecutive year, October 30-November 1, 2016. This year's guest preacher is Dr. Elaine Heath, Dean of Duke Divinity School. Dr. Heath is a graduate of Oakland University and earned her Ph.D. in systematic theology from Duquesne University. She also is author of numerous books and monographs, the most recent of which is God Unbound: Wisdom from Galatians for the Anxious Church. The Finch Preaching Mission was established in 1959 through the generosity of Mr. and Mrs. Doak Finch. A trust fund was instituted in such a manner that the annual income could be used to bring dynamic pulpit personalities to Thomasville. Additional funds have been added to the trust so that the income could keep pace with rising costs. Schedule Sunday, 10:00 a.m. Dr. Elaine Heath will teach the R.L. Pope Bible Class in the Christian Enrichment Center. All Sunday School Classes are encouraged to forego their usual lessons to hear Dr. Heath. Sunday, 11:00 a.m. The Finch Preaching Mission officially begins as Dr. Heath preaches at the 11:00 am service in the sanctuary. Sunday, 12:00 Noon Church luncheon to follow worship. Reservations are required. Please turn them into the church office by Mon-day, October 24. Meal cost is $7.00 per adult and $4.00 for elementary age children. (Note: There is no charge for children under 5 years.) During the luncheon, we hope you will take the opportunity to talk informally with Dr. Heath. Sunday, 7:00 p.m. (Music begins at 6:45pm) The second of the Finch Preaching Mission Worship Services. Music: Memorial Chancel Choir. Monday, 7:00 p.m. (Music begins at 6:45pm) The third of the Finch Preaching Mission Worship Services. Music: Davidson Singers. 8:00 p.m. Reception in the CEC Tuesday, 12:00 Noon Dr. Heath will speak at the YMCA for community talk and conversation. Tuesday, 7:00 p.m. (Music begins at 6:45pm) The final worship service of the 2016 Finch Preaching Mission. Music: HPU Chamber Singers Childcare will be provided for all services. For more information go to: Or, call (336) 472-7718. Download Bulletin Insert Download Brochure  

Resources for Vital Congregations



Lewis Center for Church Leadership

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Books

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Serve Your Neighbor

GBHEM Leadership Resources


Living Faithfully: Human Sexuality and the United Methodist Church

Englewood Book Review

Five Practices of Fruitful Congregations

Ted Talks: The Golden Circle

Ted Talks: The Power of Vulnerability

Ted Talks: The Price of Invulnerability

Design Thinking

Meditations on the Ministry of All Christians


Be A Disciple

A Disciple’s Path; A Guide for United Methodist

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Adult Christian Studies from the Wesley Ministry Network

Traveling Together: A Guide for Disciple Forming Congregations


Living As United Methodist Christians

Methodist Doctrine: The Essentials

Reclaiming our Wesleyan Tradition: John Wesley’s Sermons for Today

John Wesley Sermons: Anthology


Get Their Name

Evangelism & Theology in the Wesleyan Spirit

Canoeing the Mountains

Fresh Expressions

Fresh Expressions: Dinner Church

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Reach New Disciples

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: 50 Ways to Reach People

Community: The Structure of Belonging


Institute for Emerging Issues

Congregations 4 Children


The Royce and Jane Reynolds Ministry Fund Grants

The Duke Endowment


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


  • Resources
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