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.
Though one body, we continue to celebrate individuality and cultural identity.
The Media Center offers small-group studies and books that highlight our:
- Racial diversity
- Linguistic diversity
- Cultural diversity
- LGBTQ+ inclusion
- Diverse ministry contexts
The People Called Metodista: Renewing Doctrine, Worship, and Mission from the Margins by Edgardo Colón-Emeric. This book tests whether renewal of doctrine, worship, and mission can happen by looking to the experience of Methodists in LatinX and Latin American ecclesial contexts.
I’m Black. I’m Christian. I’m Methodist. edited by Rudy Rasmus. Ten Black women and men explore life through the lens of compelling personal religious narratives.
Pioneer Black Clergywomen: Stories of Black Clergywomen of the United Methodist Church 1974-2016 by Josephine Whitely-Fields. Black clergywomen are pioneers of the United Methodist Church who continue to significantly contribute to making disciples and spreading the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
The Lumbee Methodists: Getting to Know Them: A Folk History by Joseph Michael Smith and Lula Jane Smith. This book is a comprehensive history of the relationship between Lumbee Indians and Methodism in North Carolina.
On This Spirit Walk: The Voices of Native American and Indigenous Peoples by Henrietta Mann and Anita Phillips. Native American United Methodist writers contributed to this small group study for the local church.
Spiritual Kaizen: How to Become a Better Church Leader by Grant Hagiya. “Kaizen” is a Japanese word that translates roughly, “to change or correct for the better.” All of us can grow and develop into more effective leaders and we can do this at any time during our careers.
Who is My Neighbor? ¿Quién es Mi Vecino? Learning Spanish as Church Hospitality by Joyce Carrasco, Ruth Cassel Hoffman, and Ngoc-Diep Nguyen. This six-session resource developed by the Northern Illinois Conference covers basic conversational Spanish, and simple and easy-to-follow Spanish-language worship material.
When Christ Lives in Us / Cuando Cristo Vive en Nosotros by Justo L. González. Written in both English and Spanish, this book explores how today’s Christians may walk with Jesus in eight specific forms and acts of ministry.
La Evangelización Transformadora: La Manera Wesleyana de Compartir la Fe by Henry H. Knight, III, F. Douglas Powe, Jr., Traducido al Español por Ángel Santiago-Vendrell. The key to Wesley’s way of sharing the faith is to relate to others in love, compassion, and gratitude for God’s divine grace.
Cinco Marcas de un Metodista: El Fruto de una Fe Viva by Steve Harper. Cinco marcas de un metodista confirman nuestra identidad como seguidores genuinos y fructiferos de Cristo.
Fiesta Cristiana: Recursos para la Adoración by Joel Martinez and Raquel Martinez. Fiesta Cristiana is a bilingual collection of worship services that can be used with Hispanic congregations.
Translating the Bible into Action: How the Bible Can Be Relevant in All Languages and Cultures by Margaret Hill & Harriet Hill. A key resource in helping church leaders encourage people to communicate with God in their own language and to discover that Christ wants to make himself at home in their world.
Multi: The Chemistry of Church Diversity by Paul Nixon. Our multi-faceted world requires intentionally “multi” churches with the capacity to connect across diverse groups of people and worldviews: multi-ethnic, multi-generational, multi-lingual, and more.
Together: United Methodists of the Temple, Tabernacle, and Table by Stanley R. Copeland & Scott Gilliland. Together recognizes the long-standing theological and sociopolitical diversity within United Methodism as Traditionalist (Templers) and Progressives (Tabernaclers), but we all gather around a long, broad Table that the Lord sets, and to which He invites ALL of us to feast.
Sideline Church: Bridging the Chasm Between Churches and Cultures by Thomas G. Bandy. By mining the lifestyle data revealed by the nation’s economic engines and social trends, this frank and ground-breaking sociological analysis is a must-read for every church leader who embraces hope for a fragmented, diverse, and polarized world.
For Everyone Born: Global Songs for an Emerging Church edited by Christopher Heckert and Jorge Lockward. Bring the world into your worship service! Designed specifically for congregational singing, this collection of twenty-two songs includes sung responses, songs, and new musical settings for Communion that call the church to a never-ending renewal.
Wesleyan Essentials in a Multicultural Society by Ted A. Campbell and Michael T. Burns. This study series considers the challenge of contending for the Christian faith and the historic Wesleyan mission in the context of contemporary, multicultural society.
Legacy of Faith: Rural Methodist Churches in North Carolina by Laura A.W. Phillips with photography by Tim Buchman. This book is intended to show the diversity of communities in North Carolina and includes various geographic regions. It celebrates rural Methodist churches, their architecture, history, and service.
Faithful and Inclusive: The Bible, Sexuality and the United Methodist Church (DVD) by Rob Fuquay. This 6-session DVD study allows you to gain an understanding of how United Methodists can be both obedient to God’s Word and fully welcoming to LGBTQ persons in the church.
Living Faithfully Revised and Updated: Human Sexuality and The United Methodist Church by Jill M. Johnson, Dave Barnhart, Rebekah Jordan Gienapp, and Alex Joyner. This study will help you understand and grapple with various views about the ministry and teaching of The United Methodist Church around issues of human sexuality.
Unity of the Church and Human Sexuality: Toward a Faithful United Methodist Witness by The General Board of Higher Education and Ministry of The United Methodist Church. Suitable for a four-week study, this resource addresses how the church can be a witness and provide for a diversified human community.
Making Sense of the Bible: Rediscovering the Power of Scripture Today (DVD) by Adam Hamilton. Hamilton considers the real questions people frequently ask that continue to divide Christians and denominations alike, including: How does God view homosexual people?
Holy Love: A Biblical Theology for Human Sexuality by Steve Harper. Important for church leaders and small groups who want to make the constructive case that biblical, Christian teaching is compatible with faithful, covenantal love and intimacy amidst all sexual orientations.
God Will Make a Way: Spiritual Life and Leadership in a Contested Season by Ken Carter. Bishop Ken Carter shares reflections from his journey from the 2016 General Conference, through his leadership in The Way Forward, his role as Presiding Bishop, into the special 2019 Conference, and the postponed 2020 General Conference in the midst of a pandemic.
Diverse Ministry Contexts
Fresh Expressions: A New Kind of Methodist Church for People Not in Church by Kenneth H. Carter Jr. and Audrey Warren. The authors offer this book as a group study for church leaders and congregations who are in the grip of Holy Spirit motivation to renew their tradition by reaching people who are dechurched or not yet in a discipleship relationship with Jesus. There are several other books in this series:
- Fresh Expressions of People Over Property by Audrey Warren and Kenneth H. Carter, Jr.
- Fresh Expressions in a Digital Age: How the Church Can Prepare for a Post-Pandemic World by Michael Adam Beck and Rosario Picardo
- Fresh Expressions of the Rural Church by Michael Adam Beck and Tyler Kleeberger
Longing for Spring: A New Vision for Wesleyan Community by Elaine A. Heath & Scott T. Kisker. Delving into the widespread, contemporary longing for a more serious and communal experience of Christianity, this book provides important theoretical underpinnings and casts a vision for a new monasticism within the Wesleyan tradition.
Both/And: Maximizing Hybrid Worship Experiences For In-Person and Online Engagement by Jason Moore. This important, field-tested new work by worship technology pioneer and expert Jason Moore helps us understand how to harness radical changes in technology and culture to faithfully worship and experience Jesus, his message, and ultimately our means for carrying out the Great Commission.
Viral Multiplication in Hispanic Churches: How to Plant and Multiply Disciple-Making Hispanic Churches in Twenty-First-Century America by Iosmar Álvarez. Using scripture-grounded values, principles, and the author’s own testimony, this book will help reach both new and diverse Hispanic/Latino people, as well as other cultures and contexts.
Small on Purpose: Life in a Significant Church by Lewis A. Parks. Parks shows us how life in a small congregation is profoundly significant and the important role these churches play.
Not Just a One Night Stand: Ministry with the Homeless by John Flowers and Karen Vannoy. The authors provide experiential anecdotes and reflect on ways in which congregations can minister with homeless persons.
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.