The Church in a Political Year

 

faith.politicsBelow are some resources that were collected by the Northern Piedmont District to help churches and pastors to deal with political issues during this election year: The Restriction of Political Campaign Intervention by Section 501(c)(3) Tax-Exempt Organizations Under the Internal Revenue Code, all section 501(c)(3) organizations are absolutely prohibited from directly or indirectly participating in, or intervening in, any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office. Contributions to political campaign funds or public statements of position (verbal or written) made on behalf of the organization in favor of or in opposition to any candidate for public office clearly violate the prohibition against political campaign activity.  Violating this prohibition may result in denial or revocation of tax-exempt status and the imposition of certain excise taxes. Certain activities or expenditures may not be prohibited depending on the facts and circumstances.  For example, certain voter education activities (including presenting public forums and publishing voter education guides) conducted in a non-partisan manner do not constitute prohibited political campaign activity. In addition, other activities intended to encourage people to participate in the electoral process, such as voter registration and get-out-the-vote drives, would not be prohibited political campaign activity if conducted in a non-partisan manner. On the other hand, voter education or registration activities with evidence of bias that (a) would favor one candidate over another; (b) oppose a candidate in some manner; or (c) have the effect of favoring a candidate or group of candidates, will constitute prohibited participation or intervention. https://www.irs.gov/charities-non-profits/charitable-organizations/the-restriction-of-political-campaign-intervention-by-section-501-c-3-tax-exempt-organizations Other Resources Tax Guide for Churches & Religious Organizations:  https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p1828.pdf Revenue Ruling 2007-41:  https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-drop/rr-07-41.pdf Charities, Churches & Politics:  https://www.irs.gov/uac/charities-churches-and-politics Also, here is link to pretty comprehensive information on the Pew Research Forum website: Preaching Politics from the Pulpit:  http://www.pewforum.org/2012/10/02/preaching-politics-from-the-pulpit-2012/ - The Pew Forum commissioned this publication solely to better inform religious groups and others on the provisions and meaning of the law as it is currently written. The Pew Forum’s overall mission is to deliver timely, impartial information on issues at the intersection of religion and public affairs. From the North Carolina Conference about Election Year Politics and the church:  https://nccumc.org/mediacenter/political-discussions-in-an-election-year/ Also, the North Carolina Council of Churches has scheduled workshops across the state this fall:

Keeping Sacred Spaces Sacred

Please save the date for one of the following workshops this fall across North Carolina. Registration is limited to the first 50 people at each site. Workshops will run from 10 a.m.- 2 p.m.  Please use this link, which includes payment options.

Resources for Vital Congregations

 

CHURCH LEADERSHIP

Lewis Center for Church Leadership

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Books

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Serve Your Neighbor

GBHEM Leadership Resources

eLEAD

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

DISCIPLE FORMATION:

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

WESLEYAN STUDIES:

Living As United Methodist Christians

Methodist Doctrine: The Essentials

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

John Wesley Sermons: Anthology

REACHING PEOPLE:

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

RESOURCES TO CONNECT WITH THE COMMUNITY:

Institute for Emerging Issues

Congregations 4 Children

GRANTS:

The Royce and Jane Reynolds Ministry Fund Grants

The Duke Endowment

OTHER:

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 hfleming@wnccumc.net.
 

 

  • Resources
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