People of Faith: March 3, 2017

Three United Methodist clergy were among those honored Feb. 20 at the Christian Ministerial Alliance’s annual L.C. and Daisy Bates Luncheon. From left, the Rev. Maxine Allen, who was named the first female president of the organization; the Rev. Dr. Bill Robinson, inaugural recipient of the social justice award named in his honor; and the Rev. Dr. C.E. McAdoo, another recipient of the same award.

Christian Ministerial Alliance honors Robinson, McAdoo; Allen named president

The Christian Ministerial Alliance (CMA) on Feb. 20 presented the inaugural William H. Robinson, Jr. Social Justice Award to the person for whom it is named, retired United Methodist pastor the Rev. Dr. Bill Robinson. The award was presented during the CMA’s annual L.C. and Daisy Bates Luncheon, held this year at Pulaski Heights UMC Little Rock.

The CMA created this award to honor Robinson’s many years of activism. As one of the founding members of the CMA, Robinson has been instrumental in assisting the organization to envision its mission and advocacy. A native of Little Rock, Robinson served as senior pastor of Theressa Hoover United Methodist Church for the 31 years. Now renamed Theressa Hoover Memorial UMC, the church has become a national icon known for rebuilding lives and restoring communities.

Other recipients of the Robinson Award on Feb. 20 were the members of the Little Rock School Board who were removed from service shortly after their election, upon the state Board of Education’s January 2015 takeover of the district. Among those board members is the Rev. Dr. C.E. McAdoo, a former district superintendent who currently serves as pastor of St. Andrew UMC Little Rock.

The luncheon also included the installation of new officers, including the Rev. Maxine Allen, the Arkansas Conference’s assistant director of connectional ministry for mission field engagement, as the first female president of the organization.

The Christian Ministerial Alliance is an ecumenical/interfaith group of religious leaders whose goal to create an environment whereby faith and ethical action is evidenced in the Little Rock community.

From left, John and the Rev. Lu Harding, retired from Mount Eagle; Denni Palmer, Mount Sequoyah Conference and Retreat Center; Sarge and Marietha Leonard, Mount Eagle Retreat Center; Rachel Wade, Camp Tanako office and communications manager; Kim Carter, director of Camp Tanako and member of the UMCRM Board of Directors; Geoff Fielder, Camp Tanako assistant director; and Alex Warner, Camp Tanako intern. Not pictured is Amy Machen, adult ministries coordinator at First UMC El Dorado, who attended in her role as a board member of Mount Eagle.

Arkansas leaders attend national camping ministries training event

Ten United Methodists of Arkansas attended the United Methodist Camp and Retreat Ministries (UMCRM) National Gathering held Jan. 26-Feb. 3 at Lakeview Methodist Conference Center in Palestine, Texas. The biennial event offered learning and networking opportunities for those who hold a variety of roles in camping and retreat ministry settings, from conference staff to maintenance directors.

Featured speakers included the Rev. Jenna Morrison, child and adolescent development expert Bob Ditter, the Rev. Kevin Witt and worship leader Leslie Burroughs. Participants chose from dozens of workshops in numerous categories, ranging from issues surrounding camp accreditation and staffing to ideas for marketing, hospitality and strategic planning.

Event design volunteers for this year’s gathering included John and the Rev. Lu Harding, who retired as director of Mount Eagle Retreat Center near Clinton, Arkansas.

Rahmaan joins United Methodist Museum of Arkansas as curator

The board of the United Methodist Museum of the Arkansas Conference (UMMAC) has selected Shakeelah Rahmaan as the museum’s new curator.

Shakeelah Rahmaan

Rahmaan, who will graduate in May with a master’s degree in public history from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, has spent time as an intern with the curatorial staff of the Old State House Museum and as a graduate assistant at the Historic Arkansas Museum. In both roles, she gained experience with installing items for exhibit, photographing and processing artifacts, helping with exhibit maintenance and storing collections.

In addition to her schooling and her work for UMMAC, she works as a library assistant and coordinates youth and teen programs at Millie Brooks Library in Wrightsville, and also teaches art and drama at the Mohammed Schools of Little Rock.

Rahmaan works at the museum on Wednesdays, when drop-in visits are welcome from 9 a.m. to 4 pm., and is available to give tours on other days by appointment. To schedule a tour for your Sunday school class, confirmation class or other group, send an email to

The museum is located at 723 Center Street in downtown Little Rock, on the lower level of First United Methodist Church.