Daily Digest - April 8, 2021

“In some ways, looking at The United Methodist Church is looking at the history of the United States and contemporary trends in race and religion.”Kevin D. Dougherty, lead author of a study that looked at data from more than 20,000 churches. 


NEWS AND FEATURES

Racial diversity linked to church growth

WACO, Texas (UM News) — A new Baylor University-led study of more than 20,000 United Methodist churches in the U.S. found that multiracial churches had higher worship attendance over time. Churches such as Garfield Memorial in Ohio and CityWell in North Carolina show those findings in action. Heather Hahn has the story.
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Western North Carolina Conference
Church brings Easter joy to motel

ELLENSBORO, N.C. — This winter, Oak Grove United Methodist Church started a feeding ministry at a local motel after learning it was home to several families struggling to make ends meet. For the Easter season, the church decided to bring some extra joy, an Easter basket for each of the 40 children residing at the motel. Aimee Yeager has the story.
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Tennessee Conference
Collierville senior pastor dies of COVID-19

COLLIERVILLE, Tenn. — The Rev. David Atkinson, senior pastor of Collierville United Methodist Church, died April 7 due to complications from COVID-19. Atkinson served as head marshal of the 2016 General Conference in Portland, Oregon. In that volunteer role, he helped delegates and bishops do the work of the denomination’s top lawmaking assembly. The Collierville congregation plans to hold an online service of prayer at 6:30 p.m. U.S. Central time April 8.
To watch

United Methodist Communications
Following God's direction

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — When faced with resistance, we sometimes back down, even when we believe we are doing what God has created us to do. In the latest episode of the “Get Your Spirit in Shape” podcast, the Rev. Donna Fowler-Marchant introduces some of the amazing women of the early Methodist movement who chose to follow God, even when the tradition of the day— and many of the men — said what they were doing was wrong. 
Listen to podcast

Florida United Methodist Foundation
Clergy offered financial counseling

LAKELAND, Fla. — Clergy in debt can get help through the Fresh Start pilot program, which offers low-interest loans, financial counseling and education. The Rev. Candace Lewis says she used credit cards to the point she couldn’t pay the bills completely each month. Now, the president and dean at Gammon Theological Seminary is reducing her debt so she can save for her retirement. Connor Murphy reports.
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RESOURCES

Day1.org
Mississippi pastor to preach on ‘Day 1’ 

ATLANTA — The Rev. Darian Duckworth, pastor of First United Methodist Church in West Point, Mississippi, will be the featured preacher May 2 on “Day 1,” the ecumenical radio program hosted by Peter Wallace. Duckworth’s sermon, “The Space Left by Love,” is based on 1 John 4:15-21. The program, produced by the Alliance for Christian Media, is broadcast across the U.S. and is accessible online at Day1.org and by podcast.  
Learn more  


RECENT HEADLINES

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Daily Digest - May 5, 2021

Holocaust research leads to spiritual journey; Judicial Council releases more decisions; Church property returned to Nez Perce

Daily Digest - May 4, 2021

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Daily Digest - May 3, 2021

WCA plans for new denomination; Observing World Press Freedom Day; Bishop Bryan announces retirement