Cynthia B. Astle

The death of her beloved mother-in-law, Evelyn Grebe, resurrects the age-old questions about the deepest mysteries of life and death, writes Cynthia B. Astle. more

Apr 3, 2017 9:40 AM Views from a Ridge 1 Comments

Salisbury Font

Screencap from Steven Manskar Video

United Methodism's current debates over who has broken or kept "the covenant" ignore the most compelling covenant of all -- our baptismal vows, writes Cynthia B. Astle. more

Sep 14, 2016 5:37 PM Views from a Ridge 3 Comments

The convergence of Pope Francis' U.S. visit with the death of religion expert Phyllis Tickle underscores something significant for fractious United Methodists, namely Jesus' call to love the unlovable, writes Cynthia B. Astle. more

Oct 2, 2015 11:14 AM Views from a Ridge

Arch Street United Methodist Church in Philadelphia showed brotherly love for a Catholic group devoted to LGBT inclusion when the group was refused entry to a Catholic event visited by Pope Francis. more

Oct 2, 2015 11:14 AM Advocating Justice 2 Comments


Photo Courtesy of RealTimesMedia

The eruption of violence in Baltimore in the wake of the police custody death of Freddie Gray prompts a response from UM Insight coordinator Cynthia B. Astle. more

Apr 29, 2015 11:48 AM Views from a Ridge

Open for Service

Open for

The furor over Indiana's Religious Freedom Restoration – seen by critics as granting businesses license to discriminate against LGBTQ people – reflects The United Methodist Church's own dilemma over its anti-LGBTQ stances. more

Apr 1, 2015 4:21 PM Advocating Justice 3 Comments

Emotional First Aid

YouTube Screen Capture

A TED talk by psychologist Guy Winch awakens Insight coordinator Cynthia B. Astle to the United Methodist Church's need for "emotional first aid." more

Feb 27, 2015 10:15 AM Views from a Ridge 2 Comments

First Responders

UM Insight Screencap

This Christmas is one of most sorrowful, most defiant and most hopeful of all the holidays she can remember, writes Cynthia B. Astle. more

Dec 14, 2017 3:24 PM Views from a Ridge

Marse Robert

UM Insight Photo by Cynthia B. Astle

Discovering an ancestor's Civil War military service renews her struggle dealing with her white Southern family's history of racism, writes Cynthia B. Astle. more

Dec 5, 2017 5:24 PM Views from a Ridge 1 Comments

Christ and the Adulteress

Wikimedia Commons Photo

In our apocalyptic times when so much corruption is being revealed, Christians need to face up to our own failings to love as Jesus teaches, writes Cynthia B. Astle. more

Nov 30, 2017 8:16 AM Views from a Ridge

David Field Uniting

UM Insight Photo by Cynthia B. Astle

The true heart of United Methodism's threat of schism isn't power or sex; it's the lack of love for those with whom we disagree, writes Cynthia B. Astle. more

Nov 17, 2017 2:08 PM Views from a Ridge 1 Comments

What's Next Panel

Insight Photo by Cynthia B. Astle

Three members of the Way Forward Commission impressed some 200 United Methodists by speaking candidly about the challenges of their work and the prospects for the church's unity. more

Nov 14, 2017 6:32 PM A Way Forward 2 Comments

Bishop Karen Oliveto encouraged United Methodists to resist becoming "nonchalant" about gun violence in America. more

Nov 2, 2017 5:31 PM Global Health, Disasters & Climate Change

Chain Link Fence

Photo Courtesy of Christy Thomas

There’s a big difference between sick and evil, writes the Rev. Dr. Christy Thomas. It's time to stop conflating the two and stop excusing the inexcusable. more

Nov 2, 2017 3:37 PM Christy Thomas

2016 Book of Discipline

Photo by Mike DuBose, UMNS

The Judicial Council should have the authority to decide constitutional questions posed by any legal unit of The United Methodist Church, not just General Conference or the Council of Bishops. more

Oct 30, 2017 6:30 PM Perspectives

St. Luke Banner

St. Luke UMC Photo

Five United Methodist congregations in Austin, Texas, plead with the Commission on A Way Forward to propose removing anti-LGBTQ stances that they say "muzzle" their ministries. more

Oct 27, 2017 2:17 PM A Way Forward 1 Comments

Oklahoma City University

OKCU Photo

Three United Methodist-related colleges rank among the top 85 U.S. schools for undergraduate religious studies. more

Oct 24, 2017 2:04 PM Local Church

Gerry Hills

UM Insight Screen Cap from Arizona PBS

United Methodist laywoman Gerry Hills, chair of the Desert Southwest Conference's Gun Violence Awareness Task Force, shares her views on the critical need for better gun control on Arizona PBS program more

Oct 14, 2017 12:16 PM Global Health, Disasters & Climate Change

Puerto Rico Methodists

UM Insight Screencap from YouTube

Facing unequal response because of racism, Puerto Rico needs United Methodists to hold U.S. officials accountable for providing the same level of aid given to Americans recovering from other recent disasters. more

Oct 13, 2017 3:58 PM Views from a Ridge

Dave Nuckols

Minnesota Conference Photo

United Methodist layman Dave Nuckols of the Minnesota Annual Conference has urged the West Ohio Annual Conference to pray deeply about its response to charges against the Rev. David Meredith, a married gay man whose union violates church law. more

Oct 12, 2017 5:57 PM A Way Forward 3 Comments

After the Las Vegas shooting, United Methodists are wrestling with the public health issue of gun violence in the United States. more

Oct 9, 2017 5:45 PM Global Health, Disasters & Climate Change

America worships a false god – the gun – and it's time to topple the idol that has received too many human sacrifices, writes Cynthia B. Astle more

Oct 4, 2017 5:46 PM Views from a Ridge 3 Comments

Montana Burning Video

UM Insight Screencap from YouTube

The devastation wrought by wildfires in the western United States over the past few years – along with United Methodists' efforts to cope with the effects – pose a long-term disaster recovery challenge for the region as great as hurricanes elsewhere. more

Sep 14, 2017 3:28 PM Local Church

Our string of global disasters – hurricanes, mudslides, wildfires, floods and more – reveals eternal truths about how we affect the world God gives by the ways we live in it, writes Cynthia B. Astle. more

Sep 11, 2017 6:00 PM Views from a Ridge 1 Comments

SL Mudslide Ethel Sandy Volunteers

Photo by Phileas Jusu, UMNS

United Methodists have woven a "chain of caring" through the many tumultuous events of August, providing rescue and relief, standing up for justice, and bringing hope to wounded souls, writes Cynthia B. Astle. more

Sep 1, 2017 2:46 PM Views from a Ridge

Rainbow flag and blue skies

Photo Courtesy of Episcopal Cafe'

Conservative evangelicals' 14-point statement on gender draws immediate pushback from progressives and other evangelicals. more

Aug 30, 2017 5:09 PM Advocating Justice

Wolfe House Flooded

Photo courtesy of the Rev. Andrew Wolfe via UMNS

If Hurricane Harvey teaches us anything, the storm should teach us that we must use both belief and knowledge -- Karl Barth's "Bible and newspapers" -- as we seek to interpret the world through our faith, writes Cynthia B. Astle. more

Aug 30, 2017 4:37 PM Views from a Ridge