Daily Digest - April 30, 2015

"The traditional home (in Nepal) is a mud home with not much lighting and small windows. If the weather is nice, people go outside during the day. I think that saved a lot of people in the villages." — Dr. Lester Dornon, United Methodist missionary to Nepal.

Nepal earthquake survivors in dire need of food, shelter

NEW YORK (UMNS) — In rural Nepal, the number of earthquake casualties was lessened by the fact that many people were outside of their homes when the disaster occurred, reports a United Methodist missionary couple based there. But emergency needs of food and shelter remain dire. Linda Bloom has the story.
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Turning to the Bible when sorrow strikes

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — After a tragedy of the magnitude of the Nepal earthquake, people of faith are filled with questions. We wonder how God could allow this to happen. We wrestle with making sense of the suffering in light of our Christian faith. The Rev. Joe Iovino reflects on finding comfort in Lamentations.
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‘Can’-do attitude in Western Pennsylvania

CONNELLSVILLE, Pa. (UMNS) — Local businesses here are making sculptures of canned goods, hoping residents will vote their creation the best. The “Create to Donate” contest, put on by a mission agency of the Western Pennsylvania Conference, has residents bringing cans to the business whose sculpture they favor. The cans end up at a food pantry.
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Tool Belts United brings volunteers to aging church buildings

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Tool Belts United is bringing volunteers to aging United Methodist churches that don’t have the money or the manpower to maintain their buildings. The effort was the brainchild of a Jacksonville pastor and the president of the Northeast Florida United Methodist Men. Read the Florida Times-Union story by Beth Reese Cravey.
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Join Twitter chat on poverty, racism and mass incarceration

WASHINGTON (UMNS) — The United Methodist Commission on Religion and Race will host a Twitter chat at 9 p.m. EDT on April 30 to discuss the correlation between poverty, race, and mass incarceration. The chat will include guests from various faith communities and non-profit organizations that are working to reform the correctional system. To participate, use and follow the hashtag #GCORR. Tweet questions to @GCORR_UMC.
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Want justice? Choose peace? Here’s how

GENEVA (WCC) — Two new interactive websites have been launched by the World Council of Churches to promote “The Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace,” an initiative of the WCC member churches, including The United Methodist Church. The new website, www.wccpilgrimage.org, offers resources for congregations, organizations and groups to work together on the issues of justice and peace in order to heal a world filled with conflict, injustice, violence and pain.
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Celebrating Asian-Pacific-American Heritage Month

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — Resources for observing Asian-Pacific-American Heritage Month in May are available from United Methodist Discipleship Ministries. The resources include liturgy, prayers, hymns and songs, and the goal is to celebrate the generations of Asian and Pacific Islanders who have enriched the church.
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Looking ahead

Here are some of the activities ahead for United Methodists across the connection. If you have an item to share, email [email protected] and put Digest in the subject line.

Thursday, May 7
Webinar "Taking Faith Formation Online" — 7 to 8 p.m. EDT. The Internet offers an abundance of options for faith formation that meet the needs of busy people. Many of these are low- or no-cost tools that do not require a lot of technical expertise. Debbie Kolacki, a certified Christian educator and certified United Methodist lay servant, will lead. Details.

You can see more educational opportunities and other upcoming events in the life of the church here.

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