Julie Yoder Elmore and I attended St. Paul School of Theology in Kansas City, Missouri together. Today Julie pastors a two point charge in Michigan now and previously pastored another United Methodist congregation in Alaska! As a United Methodist Church (UMC) pastor she gets “appointed” to where she will serve. I believe UMC pastors do have some input into where they would like to serve but it is definitely an itinerant system. Don’t judge it too quickly because there are many wonderful advantages for congregations and pastors in such a system. I considered it very seriously but felt more called away from it than to it. Be sure to appreciate those who do answer the calling to the wonderful UMC pastorate.
Julie and I had been connected for many years by Facebook.We reconnected when she messaged me to say thanks for starting the podcast and that it had been an encouragement to her as a listener. Our podcast is new. I’m sure others are doing similar things but I am unaware of such an ambitious endeavor being undertaken by many others. And we’ve committed to this effort with people like Julie in mind, so it is wonderful to start having people say what we hoped to hear before we began.
Our vision for listeners is definitely not limited to clergy; we fully expect a wide diversity of listeners near and far, young and old, and everything in between. If somebody is faith-curious or faith-serious then these conversations can feed and encourage their soul. Is that you? I’m guessing it is (since you’re reading here), right? Well, my friends and I are very glad you’re here. If you can think of anyone else who might enjoy being here we hope you’ll share this with them.
This interview with Rev. Julie Yoder Elmore reminds us that we are all in this together. We all work and serve in a world where change is often slow and hard. Yet it is encouraging to know that we are contributing in our own small and important ways to moving in the best, healthiest direction possible for us and everyone around us. We naturally have a heart and mind similar to God’s, I believe, and this is why we have an intuitive sense (not a desperate nature) that there is something more, something transcendent to our experience.
How to Pray by Claire Smith
United Methodist Church (UMC)
Church of the Resurrection (This is the UMC church Jay attended while I lived in the Kansas City area)