Here is some local news with potential for a ripple effect across the U.S.:
North Carolina will become a healthcare reform test bed through a new public-private partnership that aims to see if a Medicaid management program that has saved more than $1 billion can also bring savings and efficiencies when applied to the private sector.
A few days ago, the United Methodist News Service published a story about clergy health. The story is tied to a task force report that the UMC’s General Board of Pension and Health Benefits (GBPHB) and the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry (GBHEM) released in May. To address the challenges pastors face to their hea
Many North Carolinians don't have easy access to stores selling healthy food – a concept known as living in a “food desert”. Most of us know of food markets in low income neighborhoods that were deemed unprofitable and then closed, never to be replaced. (I can think of a couple of examples in east Raleigh.) That’s not surprising, given that that grocery stores, like most retail establishments, are designed to maximize profits, not to benefit the consumer.
Health isn’t something we can achieve solely on our own – it’s connected to the environment around us. Having access to fresh foods (and being able to afford them!), being able to walk or jog safely without the risk of being hit by a speeding car -- these things all play into our overall sense of well-being.
There are definitely things that congregations can do to improve the health environment in and around the church. And we want to hear about them!
Bethesda United Methodist Church in Welcome, N.C., offers exercise classes twice a week to serve church members and others in the Welcome community. Bethesda is in the Lexington District of the Western North Carolina Conference, and Dennis Marshall is in his second year as pastor there.
Our friends at Church Health Reader recently published Part 2 of an interview with Duke Divinity Professor Randy L. Maddox, discussing John Wesley's views of health and medicine.
I'd like to return to a theme I've touched on before: that the local church is a great venue for health-promotion activities.
Below are a few resources for churches that are intentional about caring for the bodies of congregants and community members. All of these program templates have some basic principles in common:
As many of you know, all Spirited Life participants in Group 1 are attending a three-day retreat this winter. We have three of these events under our belts, so to speak, with six more to come in February and March.
One thing we've heard from many pastors is that retreat may be the wrong term for this event. I'm inclined to agree: workshop is a better term. We will change our language accordingly in the future. More about this change in a moment.