Church and Society

Church & Society
At Barrington United Methodist Church, we strive to inspire, encourage and invigorate BUMC's congregants to more fully understand, embrace and live out the Social Principles of the United Methodist Church and to connect BUMC’s ministries of charity and mercy to justice through:

Awareness:  Raising awareness of timely societal issues and providing a welcoming forum for inclusive, nonjudgmental, balanced discussions with a focus on the Biblical and Wesleyan foundations, grounded in the Social Principles.

Advocacy:  Helping members find ways to use their voices to advocate for social justice, including connections to governmental officials and not-for-profit organizations who share our values.

Action:  Promoting and supporting congregational participation in existing mission opportunities and projects with an emphasis on recognizing and confronting the underlying justice issues that create systems that result in inequity and oppression. Identifying and advocating for societal issues or additional mission opportunities suggested by Church & Society or our congregation; providing a wide variety of ways for individuals and groups to participate at various commitment levels and comfort zones.

Church and Society stands in solidarity with the Black community against systemic racism in the U.S.

Our belief that Black lives are created in the image of God inspires us to say Black Lives Matter.

As we wrote last month, "It is imperative for the white community to advance beyond mere statements condemning racially motivated violence. Policies must be adopted and implemented to ensure that incidents like the killing of Mr. Arbery are properly addressed, and recurrences are prevented."

The task remains the same. We failed to prevent the killing of innocent black lives from recurring. Now we must add the names of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd alongside Ahmaud Arbery. 

We recommit ourselves to challenging privilege, power, and unjust access. As our Social Principles remind us, racism is sin. 

Now is the time to act. We call on United Methodists to:

  • Work for the elimination of racism in all its forms, institutional and personal (Resolution 3371)
  • Partner with elected officials and law enforcement to end racial profiling of Black and Brown communities (Resolution 3377)
  • Advocate for the rights of formerly incarcerated persons and for more humane systems of restorative justice (Resolution 5031)
  • Urge white United Methodists and majority-white local churches to confront their white privilege and repent for their participation in a culture of racist practices (Resolution 3376)
  • Share conferences’ work undoing the culture of hate and name hate crimes in their conference bounds (Resolution 3422)

Not only is to be silent to be complicit--it is to abandon our baptismal vows.

What we're talking about now

Just and Resilient Communities Grant Application As a response to the COVID-19 pandemic and calls for racial justice, Church and Society will award special grants of up $10,000. Learn more and apply here

COVID Webinar Continues The international community has made tremendous progress reducing poverty and preventable diseases in recent decades. But COVID-19 threatens to undo much of that progress. Join us this Thursday at 2 PM ET for a discussion on how and what you can do. Register here

Church and Society Makes Gift to the World Health Organization Inspired by United Methodist bishops in the Central Conferences about how the global pandemic is impacting their communities, the Executive Committee made a $10,000 gift to the World Health Organization's COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund. Read more

Statement on the St. John's Church Events "On Monday evening, June 1, President Donald Trump asserted his authority to pervert the use of our sacred scriptures and violated the purposes of holy space," writes General Secretary Susan Henry-Crowe. "The Bible is not a prop on a political stage."

Free and Fair Elections for All The United Methodist Church believes the right to vote is sacred, and opposes any efforts at voter suppression. Stay tuned for a conversation on voter suppression later this month. 

Act now

With so much going on in the world, it can seem overwhelming. Here's some concrete steps you and your faith community can take to act now.

Tell Congress to:

Lift International Sanctions 

Reform Prisons, Jails, and Migrant Detention

Combat Systemic Racism and Discrimination in COVID-19

Increase Access to Food Assistance Programs

Resource highlight

Sacred Worth Books Distance learning has been challenging, but kids need good books! Just in time for summer, here's a list of children's books with diverse main characters.

Creating Change Together This current moment yearns for the church to take action. This toolkit

The United Methodist Building sign displays Mr. Floyd's final words.

Below you are invited to explore additional issues that are important to us.

General Board of Church and Society

National Council of Churches

The following list includes local actions aligned with our principles:

Go Green Barrington

Faith in Place

Barrington Moms Demand Action

A Christian Response to Refugees Seeking Asylum


Advance Care Planning
Church and Society has made efforts to support church members plan in advance for medical decision making. We offer training on Advance Care planning to offer thoughtful medical decision making instructions for loved ones while one still has decision-making capacity. These completed Advance Care documents help loved ones know that they are following your wishes when you can no longer make them for yourself. The website offers details on this process. For more information, to request training or if you have questions, please contact

Church and Society also offers education on preparing instructions to help loved ones navigate arrangements and estate details once one has died. Below is a template created by member Gretchen Ludwig for her loved ones prior to her passing in 2019.