Bishop Ward talks about health and it’s role in our congregations for this Connections video.
“Is there a balm in Gilead to make the wounded whole?” The question of Jeremiah lives with us in a powerful way as we engage our ministry as United Methodist people. In Jeremiah 8, the question is posed, “Is there a balm in Gilead?”
The African-American spiritual answers the question with powerful faith. There is balm in Gilead to make the wounded whole. We, who bear the name of Christian in the United Methodist Church, carry the healing ministry of Jesus forward.
In district gatherings, I continue to enjoy speaking with you about this idea of every United Methodist congregation being a center for health and salvation. John Wesley was very, very interested in health and believed that mental health, physical health, relational health, spiritual health were all deeply interconnected. He engaged ministry in England during his lifetime, meeting the needs of the poor, never separating spiritual care from the care of this body, the temple of the Holy Spirit.
In our own time, we have embraced as a mission of this Annual Conference, to develop healthy congregations in every place, places of healing balm. Is there balm in Gilead in your community? Yes and it flows through your congregation.
I give thanks for the ways that we as United Methodist people are engaged in ministries of health and wellness, for surely, bearing the gift of health and salvation is our very high calling.
I look forward to seeing those of you at district gatherings where I have not yet been present and continuing in this conversation through this conference year, even until we celebrate at Annual Conference in June, 2014, the theme of “Thrive,” living fully and abundantly and well in the spirit of Jesus Christ, the giver of health and salvation.