The Call: January 14, 2021

The Call: January 14, 2021

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Resurrection recreated!

Now that the annual youth ministry event has adapted to pandemic times, a new app and other ideas could help expand Resurrection into the future. A virtual Resurrection launches Saturday, Jan. 23 at 7 p.m. From The Call. Read story.

Cabinet responds to Capitol attacks

Bishop Mary Virginia Taylor and the Extended Cabinet released a letter tonight condemning the Jan. 6 assault on the US Capitol "and the unraveling of the very fiber of our democracy." From Holston Communications. Read letter.


Former megachurch pastor gets 6 years in prison

Former United Methodist megachurch pastor Kirbyjon Caldwell of Houston has been sentenced to 6 years in federal prison and another year on supervised release for conspiracy to commit wire fraud. From UM News. Read story.


Grappling with postponed General Conference

Organizers have yet to determine whether the pandemic-postponed General Conference can go forward as planned Aug. 29-Sept. 7 in Minneapolis. In the meantime, the Commission has decided not to reopen the usual process for accepting petitions. From UM News. Read story.


Clyburn proposes national hymn for healing

House Majority Whip James Clyburn plans to introduce legislation to designate the song “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” long a staple in the Black community, as the country’s national hymn in order to bring healing. From Religion News Service. Read story.


Car concerts offer safe option for choirs

For members of Luminous Voices, rehearsing and performing safely during the pandemic has meant getting into their cars, driving to an empty parking lot and singing with each other's voices broadcast through their car radios. From NPR. Read story.


Maryville man arrives home after presidential pardon

At  Dustin Heard's family church, Fairview United Methodist, the pastor teared up when he thought of the former security contractor's children reunited with their father for Christmas. From WBIR. See story.


Ways to celebrate King day under COVID

Martin Luther King Day is on Monday, Jan. 18. Even as churches meet virtually or practice social distancing, there are still plenty of ways they can honor the legacy of Dr. King. From UM Communications. Find out more.


  Photo of the Week  

Camp in the Community is celebrating a new-to-them van, donated by Mt. Hermon United Methodist Church to transport children, staff and supplies (hopefully) this summer. Here, the Rev. Gregg Bostick hands over the keys to Director Whitney Winston.

  In Memoriam  

Rev. Donald Hill, December 19, New Bern, N.C.
Rev. Brian Williamson, December 28, Pikeville, Tenn.



January 14-22: MLK Convocation
January 17: Human Relations Day
January 23: Resurrection youth experience (virtual)
February 2: Conversations on Race (Zoom)
February 24: Clergy Sabbath (Convocation alternative)

  More Information  

  Past Issues  

The Call is Holston Conference's weekly newsletter for 853 United Methodist congregations in East Tennessee, Southwest Virginia, and North Georgia. Contact Annette Spence, editor, at
Sign up for a free weekly subscription to The Call.