The #BeUMC campaign reminds us of who we are at our best — the spirit-filled, resilient, connected, missional, faithful, diverse, deeply rooted, committed, disciple-making, Jesus-seeking, generous, justice-seeking, world-changing people of God called The United Methodist Church.
The mission of The United Methodist Church is to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. Helping our neighbors, near and far, is the embodiment of faith in action.
Keep reading to see our recommended resources about:
- Mission Work
- Missions with Specific Populations
- UMC Missions
- Finding Your Place to Serve
- Lead Your Church to Discover Mission
- Congregations for Children – Getting Ready for Back to School
These resources offer an overview of mission work and missiology. For more of these titles, view our Mission Resources pathfinder.
Methodist Mission at 200: Serving Faithfully Amid the Tensions edited by Thomas Kemper & David Scott. Millions of Methodist people on every continent persist in serving faithfully amid the tensions and challenges that cry out for transformation. This book tells the story of these global efforts and what Methodists have learned about God’s mission along the way.
A Missionary Mindset: What Church Leaders Need to Know to Reach Their Community–Lessons from E. Stanley Jones by Douglas Ruffle. Ruffle teaches us to approach the mission field as if we were from a different country and learning a new culture, a new way of communicating, and a new way to connect people to the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Theology of Mutuality: A Paradigm for Mission in the Twenty-First Century by Glory E. Dharmaraj and Jacob S. Dharmaraj. Using stories, metaphors, and pivotal perspectives, the authors explore how mutuality should be in the forefront of mission engagement during these changing times and shifting landscapes.
Faithful Witnesses: United Methodist Theology of Mission by John Edward Nuessle. This study document connects the United Methodist Theological Task from The Book of Discipline with the current mission program goals of the denomination’s mission agency. By using this study process, church groups are encouraged to define and articulate their own mission theology. Includes options for a six-session study, a 2-3 day retreat, or a one-day event.
Missions with Specific Populations
These resources focus on mission work with specific groups of people. Find more of these titles in our Mission Areas and Social Issues pathfinder.
Dialogues On the Refugee Crisis (DVD). Dialogues on today’s situation for refugees in America, helping unpack the issue and drive conversations. Use the DVD, facilitator guide, and learner book to make this an 8-session group study.
Ending Human Trafficking: A Handbook of Strategies for the Church Today by Shayne Moore, Sandra Morgan, and Kimberly McOwen Yim. This handbook is designed to educate churches and parachurch organizations for truly effective work.
Shelter Theology: The Religious Lives of People without Homes by Susan J. Dunlap. Claiming that only God can free us from bondage to idolatry and that to draw close to the poor is to draw close to God, Dunlap calls for proximity to people living without homes who are practicing their faith amid poverty.
Friendship at the Margins: Discovering Mutuality in Service and Mission by Christopher L. Heuertz and Christine D. Pohl. When we befriend those on the margins of society by practicing hospitality and welcome, we create communities where righteousness and justice can be lived out. Heuertz and Pohl’s reflections offer fresh insight into Christian mission and what it means to be the church in the world today. Includes study guide.
Always with Us? What Jesus Really Said about the Poor by Liz Theoharis. Theoharis reinterprets “the poor you will always have with you” to show that it is actually one of the strongest biblical mandates to end poverty. Poverty is not inevitable, Theoharis argues. It is a systemic sin, and all Christians have a responsibility to partner with the poor to end poverty once and for all.
Radical Grace: Justice for the Poor and Marginalized: Charles Wesley’s Views for the Twenty-First Century by S. T. Kimbrough, Jr. This volume brings together for the first time the writings of Charles Wesley on the theme of justice for the poor and marginalized, drawing upon his sermons, manuscript journal, poetry, and a few letters.
These resources are about mission projects that began in The United Methodist Church. Find more resources for other UMC missions in our Apportioned Funds and The Advance pathfinder.
From Relief to Empowerment: How Your Church Can Cultivate Sustainable Mission by Laceye and Gaston Warner. This book looks at ZOE, a Christian non-profit and United Methodist advanced special, as an exemplar of sustainable mission that can empower even the most vulnerable to help themselves. Includes reflection questions.
Elizabeth & Stella Meet ZOE (Children’s Book) by Melissa Harrell. Readers will go on a journey through beautiful watercolor illustrations to learn more about the daily lives of Elizabeth and Stella. As the story unfolds, the girls are introduced to a special ministry called ZOE. Each girl in her own way is impacted by this empowerment movement that helps orphans learn how to take care of themselves.
FastPrayGive Small Group Study: Ending Hunger By The Means of Grace by Andy Morris. The World Methodist Council passed a resolution in 2011 calling the people known as Methodist to Fast one meal per week, Pray during that time for world hunger, and Give to those in need. This became a global initiative of the World Fellowship of Methodist and Uniting Church Men and as a result, launched FastPrayGive.org. This small group study is a resource to aid you in joining this grassroots discipleship movement.
You Raise Me Up: Making It Happen for Children of the Ark by Catherine Ritch. Where other humanitarian agencies are not allowed due to political issues, two conferences of The United Methodist Church–the North Carolina Conference and the Western North Carolina Conference–have answered a call and have broken those barriers through organizing and supporting Project AGAPE in Armenia, that area’s ONLY humanitarian aid agency.
Finding Your Place to Serve
Use these resources to help individuals and small groups discover where they can serve.
Make a Difference: Following Your Passion and Finding Your Place to Serve (DVD) by James A. Harnish. Draws upon biblical wisdom to provide practical guidance to help disciples connect their passion with the world’s great need. Real stories of how real people found their place to serve will inspire and encourage you to do the same.
Change the World: A Study for Small Groups (DVD) by Mike Slaughter. Linking Bible study to global mission and local service projects, this six-session small-group resource enables congregations to discuss and act on the imperatives of scripture.
Love Does: Discover a Secretly Incredible Life in an Ordinary World (DVD) by Bob Goff. Bob’s love takes action, just like Jesus did. Bob believes Love Does. When Love Does, life gets interesting. Light and fun, unique and profound, the lessons drawn from Bob’s life and attitude just might inspire you to be secretly incredible too.
Outlive Your Life: Discover How You Can Make a Difference (DVD) by Max Lucado. Max will show you not just why but how to live intentionally so that everything in your life—your time, your skills, your passions—all add up to something bigger than you.
Untamed: Reactivating a Missional Form of Discipleship by Alan Hirsch & Debra Hirsch. Internationally known missiologists Alan and Debra Hirsch cast a dynamic vision of mission-shaped discipleship. Each chapter ends with suggested practices to help you start living out the book’s principles, as well as questions for group discussion.
Small Things with Great Love: Adventures in Loving Your Neighbor by Margot Starbuck. With a list of resources, a study guide, and a six-week “Adventure Challenge,” as well as plenty of stories and hilarity from Margot’s own life, this book will open your eyes to the people around you and the huge impact you can have on them through small acts of love.
Lead Your Church to Discover Mission
Use these resources to help your church discern a missional focus.
Change the World: A Study for Leadership Teams (DVD) by Mike Slaughter. Slaughter guides leaders in visioning for themselves ways to transform their congregation of believers into a movement of disciples living out Jesus’ mission in the world. Use this program as a weekend intensive leadership retreat or as a four-week study for pastors, staff, lay committee members, and other key congregational decision makers.
Taking Church to Community: Reach New Disciples (DVD). Explore strategies your congregation can use to reach beyond its walls with worship, community events, ministries, and service — meeting community members where they are and moving them toward discipleship.
Go! How to Become a Great Commission Church by Mark R. Teasdale. This book gives tactics to get your church moving forward in mission by looking at biblical passages where God commands us to “Go.”
Walking with Nehemiah: Your Community is Your Congregation by Joseph W. Daniels, Jr. Participate in this study of Nehemiah and discover what people God is asking you to encourage, what walls God is calling you to repair, what ministry God might be calling you to lead or do, and where you should start.
Portable Faith: How to Take Your Church to the Community by Sarah Cunningham. This is a book of first steps for churches and leaders who hear God’s call and are ready to follow. Cunningham offers a rich collection of practical, engaging, inexpensive exercises for small groups, individuals, or an entire congregation.
Renovate or Die: 10 Ways to Focus Your Church on Mission by Bob Farr. With straightforward language and practical tips, this book will inspire and help you organize your church for new life on the mission field.
Congregations for Children – Getting Ready for Back to School
As many children return to school in August, focus your congregation on a priority of the NC Conference, Congregations for Children. More resources for C4C are listed in our Congregations for Children pathfinder.
Engaging Local Schools (DVD). Guide your congregation in considering questions that are critical to the success of a school-focused service initiative.
The Mission-Minded Guide to Church and School Partnerships by Jake McGlothin. Practical steps congregations can take to make a difference with the children in their community. Inspire your church family to embrace the power they have to change lives and make a difference in their community.
The Jonathan Effect: Helping Kids and Schools Win the Battle Against Poverty by Mike Tenbusch. f you have ever wondered how you, your company, or your church can be a part of the solution to the challenge of extreme poverty, this book will inspire you to take action. By coming alongside our nation’s most vulnerable young people, you will help unleash the Jonathan Effect that will turn the tide in the battle against poverty.
Educating All God’s Children: What Christians Can–and Should–Do to Improve Public Education for Low-Income Kids by Nicole Baker Fulgham. Education expert Nicole Baker Fulgham explores what Christians can–and should–do to champion urgently needed reform and help improve our public schools. The book provides concrete action steps for working to ensure that all of God’s children get the quality public education they deserve.
Request These Resources
These resources can be borrowed for free by anyone involved with a United Methodist Church in the North Carolina Conference. We will mail them to your home! All you need to do is fill out the Resource Request Form.