“Her church was everything to her. If ever I or anyone else needed help, she would be there.” – Mary Anne Cruthirds on her friend Lillian Wilson, who was slain June 6 in the sanctuary of Central United Methodist Church in Arkansas.
Church leader, 80, killed in sanctuary
WYNNE, Ark. (UMNS)—Few places were as meaningful to Lillian Wilson as Central United Methodist Church just outside Wynne. She was baptized and married there. She started teaching Sunday school recently to help out while the church’s longtime teacher recovered from a stroke. And on Sunday morning, June 6, the 80-year-old retired nurse was in the church to finish assembling disaster relief buckets and health kits for collection at the denomination’s Arkansas Annual (regional) Conference meeting, which started Sunday night. It was her last act of servanthood. She was found beaten to death in the church sanctuary that afternoon.
Mission fields expand across the globe
EDINBURGH, Scotland (UMNS)—In today’s world, Christian mission flows in all directions. The rapid growth of African, Asian and Latin American missionaries, and the evolution of Western Europe into a mission field, are two of the major changes that have occurred in the hundred years between a historic World Missionary Conference of 1910 in Edinburgh, Scotland, and a global mission conference this month in the same city. About 40 per cent of The United Methodist Church’s missionaries, for example, are from Africa, Asia and Latin America.
UMCOR issues appeal for flood survivors
NEW YORK (UMNS)—As a “1,000-year flood” drenched the southeastern United States early last month, viewers were glued to their TVs and other media. However, most of the news reports they saw focused on the Gulf of Mexico oil spill and the attempted bombing in Times Square, drawing attention—and funds—away from communities pummeled by spring storms. Responding to the crisis, the United Methodist Committee on Relief on June 8 issued a special appeal—U.S. Disaster Response, UMCOR Advance #901670—for all affected areas in the southeastern United States. UMCOR e-mailed the appeal to regular donors.
2010 Student Forum participants explore issues
WINCHESTER, Va. (UMNS)—Hundreds of United Methodist college students from around the United States examined social justice issues through the lens of the Bible and policies of The United Methodist Church. More than 300 students attended the recent 2010 Student Forum held at Shenandoah University. Student Forum is an annual gathering of United Methodist college students coordinated by the United Methodist Student Movement and the United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry. The eight issues explored included: civil and human rights, global poverty, global health issues, the impact of war and violence, immigration, human sexuality and the church, ecological justice and affecting change for persons with disabilities.