Your General Church gifts at work

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - The Rev. Karen Greenwaldt, top executive for the United Methodist General Board of Discipleship based in Nashville, Tenn., believes that the Wesleyan movement is not a movement of the past.

In a video greeting to participants in the first session of Discipleship University www.gbod.org/du, which launched in Nashville Oct. 9-12, Greenwaldt said the "Methodist movement is a movement of today that brings a similar response to need - disaster recovery, malaria bed nets, medicines, water, food, scholarships for young people, new churches for new people and support for the spiritual formation of principled leaders and faithful people in our churches and communities."

Greenwaldt spoke to about 50 participants and staff attending GBOD's Discipleship University, a key component of the agency's efforts to develop principled Christian leaders for the church and world, one of the denomination's Four Areas of Focus during the next four years.

Participants began the first of five weekend experiences of Burning Bush, the core curriculum of Discipleship University, focused on "Living the United Methodist Way."

Built around the dramatic appearance of God to Moses in the Exodus story, Burning Bush is a two-year experience for congregations to focus on developing an intentional process for making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

The curriculum covers identity and purpose, hospitality and faith-sharing, worship and spiritual practices, reconciliation and justice, and service and mission. Discipleship University engages congregational teams in exploring who they are as God's people and what God is calling them to do in their particular context. Participants are grouped according to average worship attendance in their congregations. The first seven groups are from congregations with 100-250 in worship.

The registration deadline for Burning Bush 2, which targets large membership churches, is Jan. 15. Registration is $225 per person, per weekend. For more information, including application, go to www.gbod.org/du or contact Mary McDonald at 877-899-2780, ext. 1760 or at mmcdonald@gbod.org.