1. I love the way we can say the Nicene Creed one week and ask for testimonies the next. Our lives are living examples of the liturgy. Whether it’s printed in a bulletin, hymnal, or our DNA, we bring the “work of the people” to church and the wider community.
2. United Methodists worship with every generation of Methodist who has gone before us. We also understand that our presence in this place is impermanent. We are called to have our horses, cars, and saddlebags ready for the next move. There is a place beyond our comfort zones that needs the liturgy, hymns, gospel, and message. We all must be ready to see them timely delivered.
3. I love coming to church with other people who know where I am in life, where I’ve been, and are praying for me without my having to ask. The work of the people* is undergirded by embers of prayer, stoked day and night.
4. I love the United Methodist Church because we try to do the right thing. This is because, at our core, we are not fundamentalists. We never have been. Since our arrival in the United States, Methodists have been marked by their moderation. Our vision of Orthodoxy, mixed with the common sense of the quadrilateral, might be one of the greatest theological achievements of the late 20th century. We want to do the right thing by God and our neighbors. Alienation isn’t in our genes.
5. There is always room on some pew for you, your family, and your friends in our church. No one will be turned away. I love the United Methodist Church because we don’t lock our doors figuratively or literally to anyone. If the door is closed, knock. I will come to let you in. If all the seats are full, I will give you mine.
*The word liturgy, derived from the technical term in ancient Greek (Greek: λειτουργία), leitourgia, which literally means “work for the people” is a literal translation of the two words “litos ergos” or “public service”.
–Richard Lowell Bryant