The United Methodist Church in Central and Southern Europe consists of approximately 33.500 members and friends living in 16 countries (you can find a map here), celebrating worship services in more than 20 languages and share God’s love in even more languages and expressions.
On this website you will learn more about this unique part of the worldwide family of The United Methodist Church.
Bishop Dr. Patrick Streiff
Curves – upwards or downwards
Every day, we are confronted with statistical curves. Sometimes, they are results of statistical science on past events and sometimes extrapolations into the future or what “experts” hold as future. With Covid-curves we are relieved when they go down, similarly with numbers of unemployed persons. Such curves give hope. If, however, the curve of economic performance is pointing downwards, or the number of persons who want to train for nursing professions, it creates fears. We all dream of a life where the future will become much brighter. We are children of a belief in progress.
In these weeks, we have entered – as every year – the period of Lent. What curve did the life of Jesus take at that moment? And what does it mean for my longing for a fulfilling life and my way of living with unfulfilled hopes? At present, I feel the weight of unfulfilled hopes in the horizon of a renewed postponement of General Conference and of my own retirement.
Were the early Methodists too much believing in progress when they aimed at Christian perfection? Or would the aim of growing in love to God and neighbours give to life a quite different curve in the midst of the ups and downs of developments in church and society?
March 1, 2021 – Bishop Patrick Streiff
There is movement in the international debate about a threatening split of the UMC. Three European bishops plead for a respectful coexistence.
On the edge of Antarctica, Lyaskovets Peak (1473m) can be found - a mountain named after the small Bulgarian town of Lyaskovets. It is true that the average annual temperature in central Bulgaria is not -50° Celsius as it is in the Antarctic interior. But there is a coldness here and there that cannot be measured with a thermometer. A small Methodist church feels called to make a difference by sharing warmth and hope in Lyaskovets.
The year 2020 proved to be a considerable challenge for the leaders of the Miss Stone Center in Strumica (North Macedonia). Despite high caseloads, however, the UMC's diaconal facility was able to care for more than 200 people without interruption – and continues to do so.
Her path led her from the Christ Church in Vrbas (Serbia) to the Peace Church in Konstanz (Germany). She could have often despaired in the face of circumstances, but instead, even in times of great need, she trusted that God would always be near her and never leave her. On November 29, 2020, she passed away in her 99th year: Maria Schwertfeger.
The United Methodist Church in Germany will become more open and inclusive on matters relating to human sexuality while providing structures aimed at accommodating those members and congregations from a more traditional, conservative perspective.