“We have our own personal ‘great cloud of witnesses’ as United Methodists in Tennessee,” says Gratia Strother, newly appointed Conference Archivist for the Tennessee United Methodist Conference.
“The stories of those who have come before us, laying the foundations of Methodism in Tennessee, interweave with our own stories to make a beautiful tapestry of witness to God’s faithfulness. I have seen how hearing these stories has solidified a young pastor’s foundation of faith and become a warm blanket of comfort to a church member struggling with health issues.”
With Gratia’s hire and the appointment of David Martin as Conference Historian, the Commission on Archives and History is redoubling efforts at working collaboratively with churches to record and share church history.
Gratia considers herself a history evangelist, “We live in a time when people are searching for their identity. Just one online genealogy service of many, Ancestry.com has over 3 million subscribers and that number grows every day. As Christians, our identity is in Christ, and our story is interwoven with that of other believers. The archives’ ministry of memory is truly a mission to strengthen our faith and embolden our witness.”
Want to know more about your church history? Are there stories of churches, members, and pastors that you would be willing to share? Contact Gratia at 615-601-1581 or firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a presentation or listening session.
Want to know more? Come hear Gratia speak on “Our Tennessee Methodist Great Cloud of Witnesses” at the Historical Society Luncheon at Annual Conference in June and connect with your history!