United Methodist Connections

Through its longstanding partnerships with The Duke Endowment, the North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church, and the Western North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church, the Divinity School has created a wide array of programs and initiatives designed to strengthen and enhance the lives and ministries of United Methodists across North Carolina and beyond. On this page, we highlight these United Methodist Connections. See all stories »

Native American churches pull together in the Carolinas

Gary Locklear,  Sandy Plains UMC, Pembroke NC

In the face of widespread poverty, the Lumbee and Pee Dee Indian congregations in North and South Carolina are pulling together to offer hope through a cooperative ministry of the United Methodist Church. 

One church participating in the effort is Sandy Plains UMC in Pembroke, N.C. Though the church has fewer than 100 worshiping members on a given Sunday, Sandy Plains has sent a large proportion of its members into mission. How has this tiny church produced so many leaders?  The undercurrent of support to explore a call at Sandy Plains is emblematic of a larger effort to put laity to work in meaningful ways.

Body and Soul

United Methodist Connections

North Carolina’s United Methodist clergy have higher rates of diabetes, arthritis, high blood pressure, angina and asthma than do comparable people in the state, according to a new study published in Obesity, the journal of the Obesity Society.

The study is the first to compare the health of a group of clergy with a similar group in the overall population. Although the data is limited to actively serving North Carolina United Methodist clergy, the results could be instructive for clergy in other denominations and other parts of the country as well.

Plugged in… to the Future

United Methodist Connections

In the 18th century, John Wesley encouraged the opening of Sunday schools to teach illiterate youth. Early in the 21st century, Wesley’s spiritual heirs are continuing his passion for education, reshaping it in remarkable new ways in rural eastern North Carolina.

In Greene County, N.C., Calvary Memorial United Methodist Church is helping eliminate a new form of illiteracy — computer illiteracy.