* Note I come from the Wesleyan tradition and this is written from a Wesleyan perspective* I used to believe that it was possible to change a denomination from within. If you were committed to reform that was based on the theological tenants the denomination was founded on all you had to do was have patience and perseverance and things would slowly change. I’m still … Continue reading If it Says Christian it Must Be Okay
“Mom and Dad, why do I have to dress up on Sunday?” “Because it’s the Lord’s Day, and we want to look our best for him.” Does this advice ring a bell with anyone else? I heard this constantly growing up. Anytime I didn’t want to wear a frilly dress and wanted to wear jeans instead, I was told that it was the Lord’s Day. … Continue reading Wear Your Sunday Best- Really? Rethinking Sunday Fashion
The 2015 Free Methodist General Conference is now a year away, and if you’re planning to attend it’s time to be a good steward of your money and start budgeting for this trip. Believe me, this is not going to be an inexpensive General Conference. I’ve been conflicted about the location of the event for almost a year now and that hasn’t changed. However, … Continue reading The Real Financial Cost of GC 2015- Start Budgeting
In previous years the General Conference resolutions that approved by the Board of Administration (BOA) to go to the delegates for final approval were posted on the Free Methodist Church of North America’s website. This year each delegate was given a login to password protected website for FMC employees. Unfortunately, almost as soon as it was announced the resolutions were posted, the website experienced technology … Continue reading Free Methodist General Conference Resolutions and Critique of GC Part II
Dear Leaders of the North American Free Methodist Church, In 2008 I discovered why I loved being a Free Methodist – our history of social justice. Namely living out Galatians 3:28. “In Christ’s family there can be no division into Jew and non-Jew, slave and free, male and female. Among us you are all equal. That is, we are all in a common relationship with … Continue reading An Open Letter to FM Leaders: Have We Forgotten Our Roots?
Fall of 2012 my husband and I moved into Toledo, Ohio. We bought an 1899 Edwardian home in the Birmingham neighborhood. Demographically the neighborhood is filled with renters, many of them working for minimum wage or on welfare. There are a lot of single mothers and a lot of kids. Many of my neighbors don’t have the Internet; instead going to the library on Monday … Continue reading Returning to the Urban Ministry of Early Free Methodists
In many Christian traditions such as the Mennonites, Quakers, Amish and various holiness movements dress was an outward expression of faith. However, there was and continues to be a fine line between an individual embracing dress as a form of religious expression and being forced to dress a certain way as a form of legalism. Playing with the Free Methodist history of dress in the late nineteenth and … Continue reading Expressing Faith Through Fashion: Choice, Legalism or Both?
It was through Walter and Phoebe Palmer that Ellen Stowe (later Ellen Stowe Roberts) first experienced a camp meeting revival. Ellen lived in New York City with her aunt and uncle – the same city as the Palmers. Her uncle George Lane was the editor of the Methodist Publishing House. Thus, putting her into contact with numerous prominent Methodists of the time period. The Sing … Continue reading The Roberts and Phoebe Palmer
A woman of passion, faith and a cunning rhetorical ability Phoebe Palmer is one of Methodism’s most skilled nineteenth century rhetoricians, and perhaps one of the most overlooked. Palmer is best remembered for her Tuesday Bible studies “Meetings for the Promotion of Holiness” and her widely read religious periodical Guide to Holiness. Her writings and preaching influenced France Willard, the long serving and influential president … Continue reading Phoebe Palmer: A Pioneer for Women Preachers
It’s hard to explain to people who don’t study rhetoric why it’s important or for that matter what rhetoric is. A basic definition is that rhetoric is the art of discourse. It is the study of speech. Words are powerful tools. They support ideology, stir passion and anger, and most importantly fuel action. We study the words of the present and the past to learn … Continue reading Why Rhetoric Matters: The Power of Words to Liberate or Manipulate