Daily Digest - April 2, 2020

“I regard this intimidation as an attack not only against me but The United Methodist Church as well. It is meant to silence the prophetic voice of the church, to distract us from discharging our sacred duty to uphold justice, especially in these trying times.”The Rev. Joel Q. Bengbeng on attempts to intimidate pastors involved in social justice work in the Philippines.


Filipino pastors fear for safety 

CANDON CITY, Philippines (UM News) — Amid a strict home quarantine on the island of Luzon, two United Methodist pastors said they fear for their safety because of harassment and intimidation related to their social justice work. Bishops and other church leaders have condemned the military surveillance and intimidation. Gladys P. Mangiduyos reports.
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Mississippi church property dispute settled
LOUISVILLE, Miss. (UM News) — The Mississippi Conference and a Louisville congregation settled a 2-year-old lawsuit filed after most of the congregation voted to leave The United Methodist Church. Heather Hahn has the story. 
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Caldwell still preaching after guilty plea
HOUSTON (UM News) — Kirbyjon Caldwell, former pastor of a United Methodist megachurch, has surrendered his clergy credentials and awaits sentencing in federal court, having pled guilty March 11 to a fraud charge. But Caldwell remains on staff at Windsor Village United Methodist Church and will preach there occasionally as a lay preacher, Texas Conference Bishop Scott Jones said. Sam Hodges reports.
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Missouri Conference
Pastor discusses recovery in isolation

COLUMBIA, Mo. — For many people struggling with addiction, groups are important. The Rev. Shane Laswell, minister of Morning Star United Methodist Church’s Celebrate Recovery, is worried about the forced isolation because of COVID-19. He has come up with some tips and alternatives.
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Wespath Benefits and Investments
Wespath urges companies to support workers during crisis

GLENVIEW, Ill. — Wespath Benefits and Investments has joined a group of global institutional investors in signing a coronavirus response statement urging companies to make welfare of their stakeholders a priority and to consider proactive steps such as paid leave and employment retention. The United Methodist Church’s pension agency also is appealing to banks to support borrowers and small businesses through actions such as increased credit lines or reducing monthly loan payments for the next several months. 
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UM News includes in the Daily Digest various commentaries about issues in the denomination. The opinion pieces reflect a variety of viewpoints and are the opinions of the writers, not the UM News staff.

Florida Conference
Adapting worship in a time of pandemic

LAKELAND, Fla. — The coronavirus pandemic isn’t the first crisis to force people of faith to worship apart from their community. But in a time that requires “great adaptation,” the Rev. Paul W. Chilcote, a retired professor, writes about how social distancing can lead to authentic and faithful worship.
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Higher Education and Ministry
E-resources for education and ministry available

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — As almost every aspect of ministry is now being conducted online, the United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry has created a collection of resources to help foster online education and ministry. The E-Resources page will offer online training, webinars and downloadable materials. 
Get resources


Churches improvise as different Holy Week looms

AU shifts to online classes, some students stay on campus


Monday, April 6
Deadline for virtual choir videos

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Daily Digest - May 26, 2020

Churches extend helping hands to homeless; New GC dates announced; Michigan flooding

Daily Digest - May 21, 2020

Reclaiming more food to fill pandemic gaps; United Methodist ministry aids Navajo Nation; Preserving United Methodist history with audio

Daily Digest - May 20, 2020

African churches ease pandemic's hunger blow; What is Pentecost?; Meaningful mourning during COVID-19