Friday, January 27, 2023

Recommended Readings and Events: Fresh Expressions in the UMC

The Fresh Expressions movement for starting new churches for new people in new places continues to gain traction within The United Methodist Church in the United States. Fresh Expressions has already been significantly supported by the Florida Annual Conference and in the curriculum of United Theological Seminary. Two more indications of the growing interest in Fresh Expressions have recently come in:

First is a report on some of the Fresh Expressions in the North Georgia Annual Conference. These vignettes of Fresh Expressions work there include new faith communities at a brewery, among young men, and at an assisted living facility.

And the Wisconsin Annual Conference is hosting a Zoom training on Fresh Expressions in rural settings tomorrow, January 28th, from 9am-noon Central time. The training will be hosted by Michael Beck of the Florida Annual Conference who also teaches at United. Since a large percentage of the UMC's nearly 30,000 churches in the United States are in rural areas, extending the Fresh Expressions conversation into rural settings is an important development for the church's mission.

Discipleship Ministries is also running a monthly series of webinars on Fresh Expressions, starting on February 2nd and running through September 7th of this year. The webinars will take the format of symposia featuring a conversation between two theologians on topics related to Fresh Expressions.

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