Means of Grace: A Meditation for Holy Week with Dr. Melanie Dobson


A Meditation for Holy Week with Dr. Melanie Dobson - Episode No. 56

In this episode, Dr. Melanie Dobson shares a Lovingkindness meditation for Holy Week. This is a beautiful prayer practice that offers God’s lovingkindness to each of us and gives us space to offer it to each other—both to those whom we love, and those who really bother us.  It is called a “metta meditation.” The word “metta” comes from the Buddhist tradition and means “lovingkindness”: it is a way of offering and receiving goodness, grace, and wellness for ourselves and for others.  As Christians, we understand that the source of lovingkindness is the three-in-one God whose very being is love (1 John 4:16). We receive this prayer as a gift from another tradition and practice it with the gentleness and respect it offers to us.  This version is inspired by Gil Fronsdal’s book The Issue at Hand, which has been freely given for communal use.

Melanie is an ordained elder in the Western North Carolina Conference and an associate professor of Methodist Studies at the Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary in Columbia, SC. She is also a registered yoga teacher, teaching yoga at churches, in retreat settings, and for cancer survivors. She enjoys hiking, cycling, cooking, and being outdoors. She is a single mom to one son, Elijah.

Show Notes - Episode No. 56

Anxiety and meditation | The United Methodist Church (

GBHEM - The Awakened Life Curriculum

The Practice of Lovingkindness Meditation | Pacific Northwest UMC News Blog (

The Issue At Hand: Essays On Buddhist Mindfulness Practice |

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Ted Talks: The Power of Vulnerability

Ted Talks: The Price of Invulnerability

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

Traveling Together: A Guide for Disciple Forming Congregations


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John Wesley Sermons: Anthology


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Evangelism & Theology in the Wesleyan Spirit

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Fresh Expressions: Dinner Church

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Lewis Center for Church Leadership: 50 Ways to Reach People

Community: The Structure of Belonging


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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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