Daily Digest: August 1, 2014

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“Our nation and our President have a legal and a moral obligation to protect these kids and to protect them now.” – Bishop Minerva Carcaño, part of an immigration protest in front of the White House.


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United Methodists, faith leaders arrested
WASHINGTON (UMNS) — Luis Orellana, a United Methodist from Des Moines, Iowa, has seen what happens to families when people are deported against their will. That’s why he joined with faith leaders and immigrant activists who stood in the hot midday sun in front of the White House July 31 with a strong message for President Barack Obama: Save the children, no more deportations. About 112, including 45 United Methodist, were arrested by U. S. Park Police and loaded into waiting buses for their act of civil disobedience.

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Prayer, presence for Palestinian Christians
TIPP CITY, Ohio (UMNS) — Mrs. Jalele Ayyad, a 60-year-old Palestinian Christian woman in Gaza, who was killed when an Israeli missile hit her house earlier this week, is one of the more than 1,300 Palestinian fatalities, mostly civilian, in recent fighting. On the Israeli side, 56 Israeli soldiers and three civilians have been killed. The United Methodist Board of Global Ministries is sponsoring the “Walking with Palestinian Christians” conference next week at Ginghamsburg Church, a United Methodist congregation in Tipp City, Ohio. “We as the church must continue to be in conversation to understand the complexities in the region while actively working for peace,” said Thomas Kemper, the board’s top executive. “When we pray together, we remember that God is bigger than any conflict and paves the way for honest dialog.”

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Deaf ministries groups meet in Chicago
CHICAGO (UMNS) — Three deaf ministries groups — the United Methodist Committee on Deaf and Hard of Hearing Ministries, Evangelical Lutheran Deaf Association and Episcopal Church Deaf — are meeting July 30-Aug. 3, both separately and jointly, to discover areas of cooperation and mutual ministries.

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See committee’s brochure

Pastor seeks response to undocumented teens
VASSAR, Mich. (UMNS) — Demonstrations and counter-demonstrations have taken place in Vassar since the announcement by Wolverine Human Services that undocumented Central American teens could be coming to the community. The Rev. Cathy Christman, pastor at Vassar United Methodist Church, is demonstrating her faith by talking with town leaders, calling for prayer and seeking advice on practical ways to minister to the needs of the young people if/when they arrive. Kay DeMoss of the Michigan Episcopal Area has the story.

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Reading for change in South Carolina
COLUMBIA, S.C. (UMNS) — South Carolina United Methodists are moving beyond their Million Book Effort to get to the heart of the issue: combating poverty and illiteracy through hands-on relationships. One example is the Freedom School at Francis Burns United Methodist Church, which is helping 50 young people improve their reading comprehension skills and engage in dialogue about key social justice issues. Jessica Conner of the South Carolina Advocate has the stories.

Read about Million Book Effort

Read about Freedom School

The Theology of Technology
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — “When we allow and empower people to have access to technology that allows them to get information that they can use to improve their lives, we are fulfilling the call of God to be in the world and be a transformative presence in the world,” says the Rev. Larry Hollon, top executive of United Methodist Communications. The denomination’s communications agency will host the Game Changers Summit Sept. 3-5, in Nashville to demonstrate how information and communications technology can be used to improve lives.

Read Q&A with Hollon

Global network forms for United Methodist seminarians
SAMPALOC, Philippines (UMNS) — Six students representing Wesley Divinity School, Bishop Han Theological Seminary and Union Theological Seminary recently discussed their experiences, their hopes and even their fears in the ministry. At the same gathering, they learned about Global Theological Students: A United Methodist Covenant, a network sponsored by the United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry.

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Learn about Global Theological Students

An article on the effort to make the denomination’s Social Principles more global has been corrected to note the General Conference referred the process for revising the Social Principles to another body. At this point, at the behest of the Connectional Table, the United Methodist Board of Church and Society is beginning consultations on the Social Principles.

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