Curtis’ Time-Out Corner
By Curtis Brown

John Wesley himself selected his brother’s hymn “And Are We Yet Alive” to begin the annual meetings of Methodists.   We stood in that long habit by initiating our PNW Annual Conference with that same hymn.   But more than habit, Charles Wesley’s iconic text asks what might be our most critical and poignant question: Are we still lively, vibrant, vital and strong?

We sometimes struggle to develop an institutional definition of a vital leader or congregation but many of us recognize them when we experience them.

Wesley did not assume that just because the Methodists gathered that they were vital.   Instead, he challenged them to continue to seek after spiritual maturity and he admonished them to deeply inquire about their ongoing spiritual health and missional effectiveness.   Depending on the grace and strength of God, how vital are we today?  How urgently and actively are we seeking greater vitality?  What are we willing to do as individuals and a Conference to become even more lively?

The Rev. Curtis Brown serves as the director of Faith Community Development for the PNWUMC.

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