‘Flat Wesleys’ visit church in Dover

Aiden Turner of Dover UMC reads from the book of Matthew as the Flat Wesleys, Charles and John, keep him company. PHOTO BY ROY BETH KELLEY

Aiden Turner of Dover UMC reads from the book of Matthew as the Flat Wesleys, Charles and John, keep him company.
PHOTO BY ROY BETH KELLEY

Children at Dover United Methodist Church are learning about the history of the Methodist movement and practicing intentional discipleship with the help of drawings of John and Charles Wesley called “Flat Wesleys.”

The Flat Wesleys, both John and Charles, arrived at Dover UMC in mid-March from First UMC Hershey, Penn. The package included the Wesleys, along with a description of the things the Wesleys did while visiting the children in Hershey. (There was also a sweet surprise from Hershey for the children.)

The Flat Wesleys will help the children (and adults) of Dover UMC learn about their Wesleyan heritage.

“We will be learning about Wesley’s General Rules and how we can grow as disciples by living out acts of compassion, acts of devotion, acts of justice and acts of worship,” said the Rev. Roy Beth Kelley, the church’s pastor.

After two weeks with Dover UMC, the Wesleys will continue their travels, this time to a United Methodist Church in Monument, Colo. The children of Dover UMC will include in the package a letter sharing what they learned during the Flat Wesleys’ visit.

According to a news release from Discipleship Ministries (formerly the General Board of Discipleship of the United Methodist Church), more than 700 UMCs around the world have signed up to host the Flat Wesleys, which were inspired by the youth literature character Flat Stanley©. The project grew from a desire by children’s ministry leaders to inspire covenant discipleship with children.

Congregations interested in participating in the Flat Wesleys project should contact Discipleship Ministries by email at childrensministry@umcdiscipleship.org. For details, visit http://ministrywithchildren.com/flatwesleys.

Later this year, Discipleship Resources plans to release a resource for covenant discipleship with children that will include experiences of those who participate in the Flat Wesleys Project.