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WASHINGTON, D.C. - Despite the trials and tribulations of 2020 brought by the COVID-19 pandemic, bishops in The United Methodist Church are calling on United Methodists and other people of faith to be optimistic about 2021 and to trust that God will make things better in the coming year.
In the 2020 Advent letter released today, the bishops urged people of faith to continue to have love, joy, hope and peace, especially during the season of Advent, which is a time of anticipation and longing in the Christian year.
“We bask in the hope that something new is coming and in the promise that we can face the future unafraid. As people of faith, we stand in the confidence that God, who began a good thing in us, will see it to fruition,” said the letter signed by COB President Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey on behalf of the more than 120 bishops in Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas.
The letter also pointed out that apart from the pandemic, those in the United States - where more than 60 percent of United Methodists reside - had witnessed a season of discontent as the call for racial justice and an end to racism resounded loud and clear.
“We recognize that uncertainty will accompany us into 2021,” the letter said, adding: “As the Council of Bishops, we must remain on our knees in prayer, asking God to open our minds, thoughts, and hearts to discern what God would want us to do and who God would want us to be as we lead this global denomination.”