Pastor

Mission and Ministry
The Rev. César Lodiha Akoka visits with one of the widows he is assisting through his Volunteers in Mission club started at Africa University in Mutare, Zimbabwe. Photo by Chenayi Kumuterera, UM News.

Pastor passes along blessings to orphans, widows

The many times God answered his prayers led the Rev. César Lodiha Akoka to start the first Volunteers in Mission club in his home of Kinshasa, Congo.
Local Church
The God’s Flock children’s choir from Belmont United Methodist Church sings “Away in a Manger” during an outdoor service in 2021 at Rose Park in Nashville, Tenn. In this second Advent season during the COVID-19 pandemic, the church held two Christmas Eve services, one of them outdoors. United Methodist congregations are making adjustments to keep parishioners safe as the omicron variant surges. Photo by Mike DuBose, UM News.

Churches face another test with omicron

Some United Methodist congregations in the U.S. return to online-only gatherings as case numbers mount.
Faith Stories
In this photo from 2019, retired United Methodist pastor John Capen stands by the finish line at the Tata Consultancy Services New York City Marathon. Capen also ran in the 2021 race. Photo courtesy of John Capen.

Life is a marathon: Lessons from a retired pastor

At 84, a retired United Methodist pastor finds the lessons he's learned by running marathons can be applied to life.
Evangelism
United Methodist clergy conduct a graveside funeral service for Frederick Harris at Hills of Calvary Memorial Park in Nashville, Tenn., as part of the Call the Name program. The volunteer program, started by the Rev. Jay Voorhees (left), provides clergy to acknowledge deceased people who haven’t been claimed by anyone, making sure that their name is said aloud one last time and offering a short ritual of committal in their honor. Voorhees is joined by the Revs. Luke Lea (center) and James Cole (right). Photo by Mike DuBose, UM News.

Making sure all are mourned

A United Methodist pastor with a ministry for people who are homeless has organized some of his peers to help ensure that everyone put to rest in Nashville, Tennessee, is respectfully mourned during a funeral service.

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