What are the beliefs of the people of First United Methodist Church?
We are a United Methodist congregation. We are Christians who share the common conviction that God has mercy and love for all people. We believe in a "triune" God - God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit. We have faith in the mystery of salvation through Jesus Christ. We profess the Christian faith as contained in the Old and New Testaments. We believe that the Bible, together with tradition, reason and experience, guide us to understand our faith. We celebrate the sacraments of Baptism and Holy Communion after the example of Jesus Christ. We welcome all persons to join us for worship, regardless of their faith background or beliefs. Through our worship we seek to give praise and thanks to God and to seek guidance as to the ways in which we, as individuals and as a community of faith, can be in service to God and to the world. We encourage all persons to discover their gifts and to use them to serve as active partners in our ministries.
The following is a statement of belief developed in 2008 as part of the new Arkansas Conference Communication effort:
We accept God's love as a gift that is meant to be shared: So the mission of United Methodists in Arkansas is to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world -- one person at a time.
We are an inclusive church -- everyone is welcome at our Communion table. We have a place for you, and your prayers, presence, gifts, service and witness are needed. As members of a worldwide connectional church, we have a human connection of fellowship, a theological connection of belief, a purposeful connection of mission, and a structural connection of practice. Through our worldwide connection, United Methodists are often first responders to disasters and human need.
Thinking for yourself is encouraged through founder John Wesley's practice that incorporates scripture, experience, reason and tradition. Living the United Methodist way includes Wesley's general rules: Do no harm. Do good. Stay in love with God through following the means of grace -- prayer, meditation, searching the scriptures, public worship, the sacraments and Holy Conferencing.
Four areas of focus for United Methodists are developing principled Christian leaders for the church and the world, creating new places for new people by starting congregations and renewing existing ones, engaging in ministry with the poor, and stamping out killer diseases by improving health globally.