Bishop Ward and Gateway District Superintendent, Sam Wynn, have a conversation about the Native American Ministries special offering and the historic contributions of Native American people in the life of The United Methodist Church, particularly in the North Carolina Conference.
Grace and peace to you in the name of Jesus Christ.
We celebrate ministries with Native people. Sam Wynn, our district superintendent in the Gateway district, has been a leader across our church in these ministries.
We celebrate the opportunity to participate, and also to remember, the impact that Native American Awareness Sunday has had upon our community.
In 1988, legislation was passed by the General Conference to celebrate the contributions that have been made by Native Americans in The United Methodist Church, and as a result of that, funds are used to provide scholarships for persons attending United Methodist schools of theology, and also developing urban ministries in urban communities. And it’s just a joy to know that the impact that this has had on persons in our own Annual Conference, people like Kenneth Locklear, Herbert Lowry, Mattheue Locklear, Deb Wilkins, Sylvia Ball and others who have benefited from this scholarship.
We thank you for being a part of the committee that wrote this legislation a few years ago at General Conference.
Well I feel honored to have had just a small part in this, and the other thing too that we rejoice about, we have a urban church that was established in 1989 in Fayetteville, that received funding from the urban initiative through the Native American Awareness Sunday as well.
All across The United Methodist Church, in this quadrennium, in this 4-year span, we are celebrating the contributions of Native people to our life and to our mission together. We’re also remembering the ways in which we have not lived together well, the ways in which we have not fully welcomed all people. At Annual Conference, we will be having moments in which history will be shared, ministry will be celebrated, so that we all become more aware of the unique and wonderful contributions of Native people to the life of The United Methodist Church here in the North Carolina Conference. We have the largest church of Native American people in Methodism; in the United Methodist Church.
Our Annual Conference is now one of the leading annual conferences that is engaged in and working with Native American ministries across the entire denomination.
Thank you Sam. We celebrate the ministries we share. Grace and peace to you all today.