Bypassing first base in the battle of second and third

Paul Black


I believe the most important question that needs to be answered is how do we get to first base – General Conference. While some have decried that the denomination is stuck and that our Discipline cannot address these unprecedented circumstances, I believe the answer is in our connectional system.   What if we used our connectional system to ensure the vaccination of every General Conference delegate and personnel that needed to attend General Conference 2022 and begin that work now? The pandemic has created a mission opportunity for the Church if it can resist the temptation of bypassing first base and trying to circle the remaining bases. And when we get focused on mission, there isn’t a big enough train that can distract us.

Vision and sight

Bishop Frank Beard


There is a big difference between vision and sight. A recent trip to Mayo Clinic revealed that I am losing my battle with glaucoma. While I still have physical sight, it is rapidly deteriorating, and a more drastic medical approach is needed. I am not sure what the future will hold but I am sure that even blindness will not hamper my Kingdom vision.   My personal medical challenges will not hinder the vision of the IGRC from moving forward. It will be necessary for me to take a brief ministry break to address my eyesight issues.  I apologize for any disruption this may cause you or our Conference.   I am working with the Conference leaders to determine our next steps. I do so with confidence that this Annual Conference can and will continue to move forward in achieving God’s vision for us. I will be requesting a brief Medical Leave to deal with my eyesight problems. This Medical Leave will become effective July 1, 2021. An interim Bishop will be assigned by the Council of Bishops. Please keep this interim Bishop and me in your prayers.

Statement on verdict regarding George Floyd's death

Bishop Frank Beard


“There are no winners in the George Floyd murder case. We are all hurt and weakened by all forms of injustice and pain. While our court system has rendered its verdict the pain has simply spread in yet another direction. I continue to pray for my brothers and sisters in Minnesota and for unity across our nation and world."

Holding on to Jesus is not always good

Charliam Renner


When I believe that I am the primary one doing the “holding on to,” I tend to be less healthy, and less likely to be able to move forward.  But as we recognize that Jesus is the primary One doing the holding, we find ourselves continually being called to invite our brothers & sisters-in-Christ to go “Galilee” and meet Jesus there!   I know of no more wonderful of a way for Easter People--Resurrection People--to live in this world!  Amen.

Let us be People of Hope even as we grieve

Paul Black


As resurrection people, we are reminded how grief turned into a new reality for the disciples and the world was never the same! Yet, through that time, there were all of these stages. As pandemic people, as United Methodists and yes, ever as members of our family, we all encounter these things. Let us be, above all else, a People of Hope.   When grieving comes, people who have a mature faith give witness to an uncommon relationship with God. Because this relationship cannot be taken away from them.

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