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Faith Stories

View stories of United Methodist members who are using their gifts to make a difference in the world. 

 

Rev. Russ Breshears: Making An Old Church New

Pastor says churches need to focus on serving, not the carpet color. “The Kingdom of God is too important for silliness.” View

Pro Wrestling Deacon of Doom: Rev. Brian Diggs

Brian Diggs preaches by day, and pounds people by night. Meet a minister who brings God's message to the mat. View

Family Fosters 100 Children: Ralph and Sue Hillman

Ralph and Sue Hillman felt a call to help those in need. "This voice, and I knew it was God, said, 'I want you to take care of babies.'" View

Photographer’s Ministry with the Poor: Paul Jeffrey

"The poor don't have the luxury of giving up." Missionary Paul Jeffrey finds God in the field. "I'm continually evangelized by the poor." View

Street Pastor with a Past: Rev. Keith Kaufold

A former heroin user, the Rev. Keith Kaufold speaks firsthand about addiction and redemption. "God will turn your misery into your ministry." View

Feeding Bodies, Souls at the Border: Rev. Saul Montiel

For those struggling to survive in drainage areas along the Tijuana River, the Rev. Sal Montiel is a welcome sight, providing food and compassion. View

High Heels and a Mission: Rev. Tiffany Thomas

For Women’s History Month, meet a young clergywoman whose work in a church soup kitchen as a child inspired her to serve as pastor and mentor. View

Over 90, Teaching Yoga: Bernice Bates

United Methodist Bernice Bates is 91. "I've attained this age because I have done yoga. Gives you peace just like your church does." View

Professional Comic Turned Preacher: Rev. Jerry Herships

Jerry Herships went from show biz to soul biz. "I used to be a comedian, emcee and host. That's still what I am. I host 'happy hours' for God." View

World Record Female Bodybuilder: Ernestine Shepherd

Ernestine Shepherd is 75, runs 10 miles a day, and credits workouts and her United Methodist faith for turning her grief into joy. View

Missionary’s Global Calling: Rev. Romeo del Rosario

Romeo del Rosario has served for decades, speaks 9 languages, and credits call to missionaries in Philippines. "God leads me all the way." View

Young Black Church Leader: Rev. Ronnie Miller-Yow

As head of Black Methodists for Church Renewal, a popular pastor and college chaplain, Ronnie Miller-Yow shares ideas for church growth. View

Joining Families at the Border: Rev. John Fanestil

Offering prayers and Communion on both sides of the wall, the Rev. John Fanestil serves loved ones separated at the U.S.-Mexico border. View

Young Pastor’s Fresh Ideas: Rev. Stephanie Price

Stephanie Price encourages churches to partner with local farmers. "We're closing that gap between people outside our walls and people within." View

Kenya Youth Leader: Peter Karanja

Peter Karanja fled violence in his town, but found a church home at the United Methodist Church of Naivasha. Now his faith inspires others. View

A Role in Relief: Melissa Crutchfield

UMCOR team member recalls how the Haiti earthquake changed her. "It was the perfect storm, personally and professionally." View

Chaplain Comforts Wounded Warriors: Chaplain Laura Bender

Laura Bender cheers from the sidelines at Warrior Games. She knows troops deal with physical and emotional wounds. "War changes everyone." View

UMTV: Hispanic Clergy Migrant Ministry

As we begin Hispanic Heritage Month, meet Marcelo and Corazón Escarzaga, from Mexico, whose mission is with vineyard workers. View

Pauley Perrette: Acting on Faith

She's a TV star, but her church and her faith keep her grounded. "I have Romans12:21 tattooed on my finger. It gave me my power back." View

Church Home for Homeless: Rev. Brian Combs

Brian Combs leads a congregation of the "housed and unhoused" who share meals, do community service and worship side by side. View

Church Helps Addicts Heal: Monte Payne

Former addict Monte Payne aids others struggling to overcome the “spiritual death” of addiction at the same Arkansas church that helped him. View

Success Secrets of Young Pastor: Rev. William Brewer

One 25-year-old loves his church so much he has become the lead pastor for two congregations. View

Teen Homeless Ministry: Meredith Medlin

Meredith Medlin delivers lunch, and love, to those who call parking lots and park benches home. View

Blind Photographer’s Vision: Tiffany Chartier

Tiffany Chartier is a young mother, an active church member, and a professional photographer. She also has a disease that is robbing her of her sight. View

Tornado Losses, Lessons:  Rev. Kelly Clem

The Rev. Kelly Clem lost her child and her church in a 1994 tornado. Now she is comforting others recovering from storms. View

Mother for African Orphans: Kay Oursler

Kay Oursler is a person whose life has had many different chapters. Now the Arkansan lives in Tanzania most of the year to fulfill a pledge to help orphans. View

Our Family Adoptions: Jilma Meneses

After a mission trip to the Congo, an attorney adopts a child and starts agency to help 100s of children find homes in the U.S. View

Mentoring and Ministry: Rev. Kirbyjon Caldwell

In three decades of leading one of the largest congregations in the U. S., the Rev. Kirbyjon Caldwell has developed his own style of preaching, and his own strong opinions... View

Living with HIV: The Rev. Shane Stanford

He kept a secret until he was ordained, then some churches turned their backs. "I wasn't so much upset with God as much as with God's people." View

Congo Pilot Medical Missions: Gaston Ntambo

Meet the son of an African bishop who found his calling in the cockpit of a rescue plane. View