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1940
The Commission on Public Information is authorized by General Conference.

Bishops saw the need for an informed, intelligent church with a unified message and formed the Commission on Public Information to fill this role. The commission would serve as a centralized agency to relate to media outlets, ensuring that the church’s news would be published and shared with the public.

1948
Methodists form a Radio and Film Commission.

​In an effort to take advantage of technological advances that could enhance communications initiatives, the General Conference formed the Radio and Film Commission “to unify and co-ordinate the audiovisual programs of all Methodist agencies.” Five years after the commission’s establishment, the film “John Wesley” was released, finding a diverse global audience.

1952
General Conference receives extensive radio and television coverage for the first time.

During the 1952 General Conference, more than 480 radio stations featured the commentary of Rev. Walter Van Kirk, an already well-known radio personality. Various other General Conference attendees were featured on television programs in Los Angeles and San Francisco, home city to the conference. ​

1954
A weekly news summary, Methodists Make News, begins.

​Methodists Make News was originally directed to local churches and a few newspaper reporters but quickly gained a wide-spread following. A group of 300 users grew to an impressive 1,350 by 1970 and the commission had to work to restrict its distribution.

1954
The word “television” completes the name of the Television, Radio and Film Commission (TRAFCO).

Two television programs were produced by TRAFCO: “The Pastor,” a short weekly program, and “The Way,” an ambitious drama series recounting inspirational stories of faith.

1957
The program journal, The Methodist Story, is established.

All program agencies of the church were incorporated into The Methodist Story, assisting local church clergy and laity to gain knowledge, ideas, and updated information about various program initiatives of the church. Pages were perforated so that users could easily tear them out and pass ideas along to fellow church members.

1958
A Spanish-language program journal, later named el Intérprete, is introduced.

​Originally titled “La Historia Metodista,” the journal incorporated key content from The Methodist Story, which was sent to Havana, Cuba, for translating and editing before distribution to Hispanic churches in both Latin and North America. The editing eventually moved stateside when Castro’s revolution spurred communication challenges and paper shortages.

1966
‘Night Call,’ the first ever all-night national radio call-in program launched.

​The church created “Night Call” as an opportunity for people of diverse backgrounds to discuss critical and often controversial issues. In 1968, an extremely tumultuous time for race relations, the show focused on becoming an avenue for reconciliation and peace. Del Shields hosted the program and leading civil rights advocates and celebrities were invited to join so that they could engage with callers; a staggering 64,000 listeners called in to dialogue with black activist Stokely Carmichael.

1968
The Cross and Flame logo is created by the Division of Interpretation.

Created when The Methodist Church united with the Evangelical United Brethren Church, the Cross and Flame has become the instantly recognizable insignia for The United Methodist Church worldwide.

1969
Interpreter magazine, the official program journal of The United Methodist Church, debuts.

Merging The Methodist Story with a quarterly program publication entitled Spotlight gave birth to The Interpreter, which was sent at no charge to 340,000 local church officials. The publication represented all church agencies and served as the main communication engine for local church workers to connect to global initiatives and program areas. Today, Interpreter magazine is distributed to 143,000 readers six times per year.​

1972
United Methodist Information, TRAFCO, and the Division of Interpretation combine to form UMCom.

Originally named the Joint Committee on Communications, the 1972 General Conference attendees saw the critical need to unify all church communication functions under one umbrella. Pulling together the three existing communication agencies combined staff, strategy, and resources that could more efficiently and completely fill the communication requirements of the church.​

1974
InfoServ, the official United Methodist information service, launches.

A toll-free information line became a groundbreaking resource for church members who could call InfoServ with questions, feedback, or requests for information. InfoServ is still an important aspect of United Methodist Communications, fielding more than 18,000 calls, emails, and live chat interactions each year.​

1981
New office and studio building opens in Nashville, Tennessee.

The new 34,000 square foot United Methodist Communications office building contained film/video, radio, and music studios, greatly enhancing production capabilities. The building was the first new United Methodist agency building in 20 years, serving as a testament to the importance of the agency’s work and mission.​

1982
Film Service begins providing film distribution for other denominations, resulting in EcuFilm.

United Methodist Communications’ takeover of film distribution from Cokesbury, the United Methodist retail arm, created a full service film distributor that could offer conceptualization, scripting, and production – making the service attractive to churches wishing to incorporate film components into worship services and other gatherings. EcuFilm grew to serve a wide variety of denominations for more than 30 years.​

1983
CircuitWriter computer network begins.

The rise of computer technology was a game changer for the United Methodist News Service, enabling quick delivery of stories using electronic mail and NewsNet, a carrier accessed by long-distance phone. The first event covered by computer-based reporting was the 1983 World Council of Churches Assembly in Vancouver, British Columbia; the following year, the General and Jurisdictional Conferences had thorough news coverage with constant updates to anyone with computer access.

1983
United Methodist News Service gathers and distributes news by computer.

The Computer Based Communications Task Force spent four years strategizing the use of computer technology. Their work came to life in 1983, when a demonstration and consultation event was held to help general agencies, annual conferences, and local churches grasp the possibilities of new tools. This led to the CircuitWriter Network, which eventually linked 130 users via electronic mail and a central bulletin board.

1985
“Catch the Spirit,” a weekly TV national news magazine show, begins.

Named after a United Methodist public relations campaign, “Catch the Spirit” featured commentary from a variety of guests as well as churches and individuals performing acts of service and telling their faith stories. The show was syndicated to cable networks, eventually reaching 46 million households in 7,000 communities.​

1987
VISN cable network, now known as the Hallmark Channel, goes on the air.

United Methodist Communications joined with 21 other mainline denominations to form VISN (Vision Interfaith Satellite Network), providing all-day religious programming to cable systems as an alternative to commercialized television evangelists. Beginning in 1993, the channel went through several name changes and owners, eventually becoming the Hallmark Channel in 2001.

1989
Plans begin for a Korean-language program journal, United Methodists in Service.

​UMC agencies with Korean staff members banded together with United Methodist Communications to produce an informational and programming piece to send to new Korean church starts being planted around the U.S. – whether already affiliated with the UMC or not. Originally titled United Methodist Family, the publication was sent to 300 churches across the country.

1995
UMC.org, the denominational website, launches.

United Methodist Communications leadership took legislation to General Conference to allow for building an online presence, opening a new opportunity to engage with members and non-members. A team of staff members from a variety of departments came together to create the website UMC.org, basing the content on the most popular inquiries to InfoServ​.

2000
Find-A-Church, an online directory of churches, debuts.

The ever-increasing use of the web highlighted a growing need to pinpoint local churches online, but many of the addresses on file were those of pastors rather than churches themselves. A marketing campaign asked local churches to update their information via a mailed form, a floppy disk file, or a web form - the first of its kind utilized at United Methodist Comunications. After the data collection phase was complete, Find-A-Church was born. ​

2001
A national welcoming and advertising campaign is announced.

“Our hearts, our minds and our doors are always open. The people of The United Methodist Church.” Igniting Ministry was United Methodist Communications’ first multifaceted national welcoming and advertising campaign aimed at 25-54-year-olds. In addition to high-level advertising efforts, local churches were armed with tools and training to implement the welcoming effort. After the first three years of the campaign, UMC worship attendance had increased by 6 percent while overall church attendance was steadily decreasing across the U.S.

2001
After the 9/11 tragedy, a billboard near Ground Zero offers support from United Methodists.

​In the wake of the devastation after 9/11, a billboard near Ground Zero was commissioned to offer support and reassurance, featuring an image of praying hands and a simple statement: ‘Fear is not the only force at work in the world today.’ The image stood as a beacon of hope in a time and place marked by deep sadness. More than 600,000 people saw the billboard every day of its three-month presence.

2002
UMTV is launched, producing positive news segments for use in secular programming.

The church saw a need for life-affirming, uplifting news segments and began producing short video features that could easily be incorporated into secular newscasts. The pieces were rooted in Methodism but had a human interest focus. Today, the videos are also promoted through online channels; UMTV has garnered nearly two million views on YouTube since its inception.

2003
The church begins advertising in Times Square after policy banning faith-based ads is reversed.

​In answer to media coverage of the National Council of Churches speaking out against their policy, Reuters reconsidered their position against faith-based advertising and welcomed United Methodist Communications’ television ad “The Gift” to Times Square during the Thanksgiving holiday season. The advertisement ran 140 times over a two-week period on a 7,000 square foot electronic sign.

2004
Igniting Ministry welcoming training becomes available online.

Face-to-face training efforts were already underway for local churches to become more welcoming congregations, but bringing the materials online allowed more congregations and church leaders to participate. Trainees learned about the campaign’s national advertising efforts, developing welcoming lifestyles, and creating an action plan to build a culture of hospitality in their churches as they reach out to the community.​

2004
Central Conference Communications Initiative is created.

The United Methodist Church’s global presence was growing and United Methodist Communications saw the importance of direct communication to international churches. Partnerships with Central Conference leadership in Africa, Europe, and the Phillippines opened up communication channels to build infrastructure and increase awareness of mission and ministry initiatives, focusing on the needs, cultures, and available technology in each conference.​

2005
After Hurricane Katrina, the agency helps the church move into online giving for disaster response.

With the rise of online giving, United Methodist Communications answered the call for a convenient and quick way to provide funding to hurricane victims through the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR). “Friends Asking Friends” was established on umc.org, enabling individuals to create unique fundraising webpages that they could send to their contacts asking for support. In total, UMCOR raised $66 million for aid services and an additional $7.6 million in relief supplies. These resources funded cleanup, reconstruction, family-by-family problem solving, and direct assistance to support the survivors.​

2006
The agency joins the Nothing but Nets malaria campaign with the U.N. Foundation and others.

The people of The United Methodist Church join Sports Illustrated, the U.N. Foundation, and NBA Cares as a founding partner of the Nothing but Nets initiative, an effort to fund and distribute insecticide-treated bed nets in Africa to prevent malaria. Malaria infected nearly 500 million people each year and the campaign’s ‘send a net, save a life’ theme empowered thousands of supporters to donate $10 to provide a bed net to a family in Africa.​

2008
United Methodist Communications sends its first tweet.

United Methodist Communications dove into social media as a means of reaching more people through more channels to engage audiences in a wider and more relevant way, beginning with Twitter in December of 2008 (soon to be followed by Facebook). Today, more than half a million people follow various social media accounts managed by United Methodist Communications.

2008
With partners, the agency helps launch distance-learning theological education in Africa.

The Africa Training and Learning Center in Mozambique was established as a satellite campus of Africa University in Zimbabwe, a United Methodist-related school. Classes were offered in Portuguese, the students’ native language, in the mornings and evenings on a variety of subjects, including theology. Partnerships across three continents made the school a reality, enabling it to serve as a gateway for people to connect to education who would not have the opportunity otherwise.

2009
United Methodist Communications launches a new radio station in Côte d’lvoire.

After an 18 month planning process in partnership with various worldwide supporters, Radio Methos debuted during the Christmas holidays, providing a voice of hope to numerous remote African villages that could only be reached via radio waves. The radio station served to educate and transform people and to spread the good news of Jesus Christ across the country. ​

2009
The Rethink Church campaign launches.

Rethink Church became the next evolution of the denomination’s “Open hearts” welcoming and advertising campaign. The messaging, targeting 18-to-34-year-olds, highlighted the many opportunities for involvement within United Methodist churches, complemented by a website emphasizing the thousands of doors through which a person can engage with a local church. The campaign is still thriving today, with more than 1 million people served through Rethink Church volunteerism events in 2014.

2010
Imagine No Malaria launches with a goal of raising $75 million.

Launched on World Malaria Day in Austin, Texas, and via live streaming video, Imagine No Malaria expanded on the Nothing but Nets initiative to include communication, education, prevention and treatment. The church set a lofty commitment to raise $75 million to help eliminate malaria deaths in Sub-Saharan Africa. As of June 2015, the initiative has fulfilled $66 million of its $75 million goal.​

2011
The official United Methodist Church mobile app is launched.

​The free application for iPad, iPhone, and Android smartphones delivered information to constituents in a convenient and quick manner. The app offered daily devotions, news, videos, photos, social media sites, and a searchable index of United Methodist churches by geographic area. An “Ask InfoServ” feature was also incorporated so that users could ask the church questions or request resources.

2012
Information and Communication Technology for Development initiative is launched.

Information and Communication Technology for Development (ICT4D) was an important addition to United Methodist Communications’ work given the ever-increasing need to close the gap between technologically-advanced countries and those that are technology poor. The effort seeks to empower communities and support churches working in developing countries. It began through a partnership with Inveneo, a nonprofit technology provider, training interested local church members to undertake projects in developing countries to implement sustainable, life-saving technology to improve quality of life.​

2014
The agency raises awareness of Ebola through channels such as text messaging and video.

Ebola education, including prevention, diagnosis and treatment of the disease became a key focus for United Methodist Communications throughout the African outbreak. Mass SMS text message updates became a trusted, quick communication channel. The animated video “Ebola: A Poem for the Living” was collaboratively produced and translated into 16 languages.​

2015
United Methodist Communications works with partners to produce an ASL glossary.

United Methodist Communications works with the United Methodist Committee on Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Ministries to produce a video American Sign Language glossary, with Deaf people signing a lexicon of religious terms with explanations, as well as the Lord’s Prayer and the Apostles’ Creed.

Bishops saw the need for an informed, intelligent church with a unified message and formed the Commission on Public Information to fill this role. The commission would serve as a centralized agency to relate to media outlets, ensuring that the church’s news would be published and shared with the public.


Learn More >>

​In an effort to take advantage of technological advances that could enhance communications initiatives, the General Conference formed the Radio and Film Commission “to unify and co-ordinate the audiovisual programs of all Methodist agencies.” Five years after the commission’s establishment, the film “John Wesley” was released, finding a diverse global audience.


Learn More >>

During the 1952 General Conference, more than 480 radio stations featured the commentary of Rev. Walter Van Kirk, an already well-known radio personality. Various other General Conference attendees were featured on television programs in Los Angeles and San Francisco, home city to the conference. ​


Learn More >>

​Methodists Make News was originally directed to local churches and a few newspaper reporters but quickly gained a wide-spread following. A group of 300 users grew to an impressive 1,350 by 1970 and the commission had to work to restrict its distribution.


Learn More >>

Two television programs were produced by TRAFCO: “The Pastor,” a short weekly program, and “The Way,” an ambitious drama series recounting inspirational stories of faith.


Learn More >>

All program agencies of the church were incorporated into The Methodist Story, assisting local church clergy and laity to gain knowledge, ideas, and updated information about various program initiatives of the church. Pages were perforated so that users could easily tear them out and pass ideas along to fellow church members.

​Originally titled “La Historia Metodista,” the journal incorporated key content from The Methodist Story, which was sent to Havana, Cuba, for translating and editing before distribution to Hispanic churches in both Latin and North America. The editing eventually moved stateside when Castro’s revolution spurred communication challenges and paper shortages.


Learn More >>

​The church created “Night Call” as an opportunity for people of diverse backgrounds to discuss critical and often controversial issues. In 1968, an extremely tumultuous time for race relations, the show focused on becoming an avenue for reconciliation and peace. Del Shields hosted the program and leading civil rights advocates and celebrities were invited to join so that they could engage with callers; a staggering 64,000 listeners called in to dialogue with black activist Stokely Carmichael.


Learn More >>

Created when The Methodist Church united with the Evangelical United Brethren Church, the Cross and Flame has become the instantly recognizable insignia for The United Methodist Church worldwide.


Learn More >>

Merging The Methodist Story with a quarterly program publication entitled Spotlight gave birth to The Interpreter, which was sent at no charge to 340,000 local church officials. The publication represented all church agencies and served as the main communication engine for local church workers to connect to global initiatives and program areas. Today, Interpreter magazine is distributed to 143,000 readers six times per year.​


Learn More >>

Originally named the Joint Committee on Communications, the 1972 General Conference attendees saw the critical need to unify all church communication functions under one umbrella. Pulling together the three existing communication agencies combined staff, strategy, and resources that could more efficiently and completely fill the communication requirements of the church.​


Learn More >>

A toll-free information line became a groundbreaking resource for church members who could call InfoServ with questions, feedback, or requests for information. InfoServ is still an important aspect of United Methodist Communications, fielding more than 18,000 calls, emails, and live chat interactions each year.​


Learn More >>

The new 34,000 square foot United Methodist Communications office building contained film/video, radio, and music studios, greatly enhancing production capabilities. The building was the first new United Methodist agency building in 20 years, serving as a testament to the importance of the agency’s work and mission.​


Learn More >>

United Methodist Communications’ takeover of film distribution from Cokesbury, the United Methodist retail arm, created a full service film distributor that could offer conceptualization, scripting, and production – making the service attractive to churches wishing to incorporate film components into worship services and other gatherings. EcuFilm grew to serve a wide variety of denominations for more than 30 years.​

The rise of computer technology was a game changer for the United Methodist News Service, enabling quick delivery of stories using electronic mail and NewsNet, a carrier accessed by long-distance phone. The first event covered by computer-based reporting was the 1983 World Council of Churches Assembly in Vancouver, British Columbia; the following year, the General and Jurisdictional Conferences had thorough news coverage with constant updates to anyone with computer access.


Learn More >>

The Computer Based Communications Task Force spent four years strategizing the use of computer technology. Their work came to life in 1983, when a demonstration and consultation event was held to help general agencies, annual conferences, and local churches grasp the possibilities of new tools. This led to the CircuitWriter Network, which eventually linked 130 users via electronic mail and a central bulletin board.


Learn More >>

Named after a United Methodist public relations campaign, “Catch the Spirit” featured commentary from a variety of guests as well as churches and individuals performing acts of service and telling their faith stories. The show was syndicated to cable networks, eventually reaching 46 million households in 7,000 communities.​


Learn More >>

United Methodist Communications joined with 21 other mainline denominations to form VISN (Vision Interfaith Satellite Network), providing all-day religious programming to cable systems as an alternative to commercialized television evangelists. Beginning in 1993, the channel went through several name changes and owners, eventually becoming the Hallmark Channel in 2001.


Learn More >>

​UMC agencies with Korean staff members banded together with United Methodist Communications to produce an informational and programming piece to send to new Korean church starts being planted around the U.S. – whether already affiliated with the UMC or not. Originally titled United Methodist Family, the publication was sent to 300 churches across the country.


Learn More >>

United Methodist Communications leadership took legislation to General Conference to allow for building an online presence, opening a new opportunity to engage with members and non-members. A team of staff members from a variety of departments came together to create the website UMC.org, basing the content on the most popular inquiries to InfoServ​.


Read More >>

The ever-increasing use of the web highlighted a growing need to pinpoint local churches online, but many of the addresses on file were those of pastors rather than churches themselves. A marketing campaign asked local churches to update their information via a mailed form, a floppy disk file, or a web form - the first of its kind utilized at United Methodist Comunications. After the data collection phase was complete, Find-A-Church was born. ​


Learn More >>

“Our hearts, our minds and our doors are always open. The people of The United Methodist Church.” Igniting Ministry was United Methodist Communications’ first multifaceted national welcoming and advertising campaign aimed at 25-54-year-olds. In addition to high-level advertising efforts, local churches were armed with tools and training to implement the welcoming effort. After the first three years of the campaign, UMC worship attendance had increased by 6 percent while overall church attendance was steadily decreasing across the U.S.


Learn More >>

​In the wake of the devastation after 9/11, a billboard near Ground Zero was commissioned to offer support and reassurance, featuring an image of praying hands and a simple statement: ‘Fear is not the only force at work in the world today.’ The image stood as a beacon of hope in a time and place marked by deep sadness. More than 600,000 people saw the billboard every day of its three-month presence.


Learn More >>

The church saw a need for life-affirming, uplifting news segments and began producing short video features that could easily be incorporated into secular newscasts. The pieces were rooted in Methodism but had a human interest focus. Today, the videos are also promoted through online channels; UMTV has garnered nearly two million views on YouTube since its inception.


Learn More >>

​In answer to media coverage of the National Council of Churches speaking out against their policy, Reuters reconsidered their position against faith-based advertising and welcomed United Methodist Communications’ television ad “The Gift” to Times Square during the Thanksgiving holiday season. The advertisement ran 140 times over a two-week period on a 7,000 square foot electronic sign.


Learn More >>

Face-to-face training efforts were already underway for local churches to become more welcoming congregations, but bringing the materials online allowed more congregations and church leaders to participate. Trainees learned about the campaign’s national advertising efforts, developing welcoming lifestyles, and creating an action plan to build a culture of hospitality in their churches as they reach out to the community.​


Learn More >>

The United Methodist Church’s global presence was growing and United Methodist Communications saw the importance of direct communication to international churches. Partnerships with Central Conference leadership in Africa, Europe, and the Phillippines opened up communication channels to build infrastructure and increase awareness of mission and ministry initiatives, focusing on the needs, cultures, and available technology in each conference.​


Learn More >>

With the rise of online giving, United Methodist Communications answered the call for a convenient and quick way to provide funding to hurricane victims through the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR). “Friends Asking Friends” was established on umc.org, enabling individuals to create unique fundraising webpages that they could send to their contacts asking for support. In total, UMCOR raised $66 million for aid services and an additional $7.6 million in relief supplies. These resources funded cleanup, reconstruction, family-by-family problem solving, and direct assistance to support the survivors.​


Learn More >>

The people of The United Methodist Church join Sports Illustrated, the U.N. Foundation, and NBA Cares as a founding partner of the Nothing but Nets initiative, an effort to fund and distribute insecticide-treated bed nets in Africa to prevent malaria. Malaria infected nearly 500 million people each year and the campaign’s ‘send a net, save a life’ theme empowered thousands of supporters to donate $10 to provide a bed net to a family in Africa.​


Learn More >>

United Methodist Communications dove into social media as a means of reaching more people through more channels to engage audiences in a wider and more relevant way, beginning with Twitter in December of 2008 (soon to be followed by Facebook). Today, more than half a million people follow various social media accounts managed by United Methodist Communications.

The Africa Training and Learning Center in Mozambique was established as a satellite campus of Africa University in Zimbabwe, a United Methodist-related school. Classes were offered in Portuguese, the students’ native language, in the mornings and evenings on a variety of subjects, including theology. Partnerships across three continents made the school a reality, enabling it to serve as a gateway for people to connect to education who would not have the opportunity otherwise.


Learn More >>

After an 18 month planning process in partnership with various worldwide supporters, Radio Methos debuted during the Christmas holidays, providing a voice of hope to numerous remote African villages that could only be reached via radio waves. The radio station served to educate and transform people and to spread the good news of Jesus Christ across the country. ​


Learn More >>

Rethink Church became the next evolution of the denomination’s “Open hearts” welcoming and advertising campaign. The messaging, targeting 18-to-34-year-olds, highlighted the many opportunities for involvement within United Methodist churches, complemented by a website emphasizing the thousands of doors through which a person can engage with a local church. The campaign is still thriving today, with more than 1 million people served through Rethink Church volunteerism events in 2014.


Learn More >>

Launched on World Malaria Day in Austin, Texas, and via live streaming video, Imagine No Malaria expanded on the Nothing but Nets initiative to include communication, education, prevention and treatment. The church set a lofty commitment to raise $75 million to help eliminate malaria deaths in Sub-Saharan Africa. As of June 2015, the initiative has fulfilled $66 million of its $75 million goal.​


Learn More >>

​The free application for iPad, iPhone, and Android smartphones delivered information to constituents in a convenient and quick manner. The app offered daily devotions, news, videos, photos, social media sites, and a searchable index of United Methodist churches by geographic area. An “Ask InfoServ” feature was also incorporated so that users could ask the church questions or request resources.


Learn More >>

Information and Communication Technology for Development (ICT4D) was an important addition to United Methodist Communications’ work given the ever-increasing need to close the gap between technologically-advanced countries and those that are technology poor. The effort seeks to empower communities and support churches working in developing countries. It began through a partnership with Inveneo, a nonprofit technology provider, training interested local church members to undertake projects in developing countries to implement sustainable, life-saving technology to improve quality of life.​


Learn More >>

Ebola education, including prevention, diagnosis and treatment of the disease became a key focus for United Methodist Communications throughout the African outbreak. Mass SMS text message updates became a trusted, quick communication channel. The animated video “Ebola: A Poem for the Living” was collaboratively produced and translated into 16 languages.​


Learn More >>

United Methodist Communications works with the United Methodist Committee on Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Ministries to produce a video American Sign Language glossary, with Deaf people signing a lexicon of religious terms with explanations, as well as the Lord’s Prayer and the Apostles’ Creed.


Learn More >>

United Methodist Communications: Communicating Faith for 75 Years

In 2015, United Methodist Communications celebrates its 75th year of telling the church’s story, both within the church and to the world. 

Though it has evolved through many name and structural changes, the denomination’s communication agency has initiated a very long list of “firsts” throughout its 75-year history. From mimeograph machines to cloud computing, reference cards to databases, sound sheets to CDs, flannelgraphs to infographics, filmstrips to high-definition video, posters to digital ads, the denomination has come a long way in communications.

The General Commission on Communication elected former corporate marketing VP to lead the denomination's global communication agency beginning this past June. Photo by Mike DuBose, UMNS.

A new leader for a new future

On Oct. 1, 1940, the first Methodist Information office opened in New York. While the agency has grown and changed, one thing has been constant: communicating a message of faith. Read More

With global mindset, agency transforms church communications

Work in Africa, Asia and Europe builds communications capacity and empowers communities. Read More

Seven decades of product diversity

From the start, United Methodist Communications strived to create and offer products and services that met people’s needs. Read More

Outreach in modern times

As technology has evolved, United Methodist Communications has expanded its message of faith to new platforms. After 9/11, it was one of the first advertisers back on TV offering support. Read More

The newsroom at the 1988 General Conference in St. Louis.

Telling the story of General Conference

The journey of communicating at and about General Conference has steadily progressed, spanning decades of technological abilities, current issues and church news. Read More

UMNS photographer Mike DuBose covering the Asian tsunami of 2005 in Banda Aceh, Indonesia.

News agency marks 75 years of telling United Methodist story

From General Conference to disaster relief, the United Methodist News Service has been chronicling the life of The United Methodist Church for decades. Read More