"I think Santa is awesome, and he makes Christmas and celebrating Jesus' birthday so much more fun, and when we believe in Santa, we get gifts from Santa." — Jessica Brodie, talking to her son about Christmas.
Santa teaches lesson in grace
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — It is an emotional and spiritual tightrope that many families walk between letting their children enjoy the magic of Santa and making sure they know that Jesus is the reason for Christmas. Kathy L. Gilbert shares how Santa can help youngsters better understand grace.
Way Forward Commission plans prayer
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — In an Advent message, the three bishops moderating the Commission on a Way Forward announced plans for commission members to meet by conference call and pray together. The commission moderators are Bishops David Yemba, Sandra Steiner Ball and Ken Carter.
Agency report: United Methodist Women
NEW YORK (UMNS) — As it continued to celebrate its 150th anniversary, United Methodist Women focused this year on strengthening leadership development and seeking mission partnership opportunities throughout the church. Part of a series of reports on the work each general agency accomplished in 2016.
Standing up after eastern Tennessee fires
ALCOA, Tenn. (UMNS) — Holston Conference leaders were grateful when the treasurer’s office announced the latest total of donations arriving for Sevier County wildfire relief: $31,485. The conference’s Annette Spence reports on how United Methodists are helping.
Earthkeepers answer call to care for God’s creation
ATLANTA (UMNS) — Hearing a vocational call to care for God’s creation, a group of United Methodist “Earthkeepers” were trained and commissioned last month through the Center for Mission Innovation of the United Methodist Board of Global Ministries.
Bishop urges prayer to break racial boundaries
COLUMBIA, Mo. (UMNS) — Missouri Area Bishop Bob Farr is planning one day per month for intentional prayer within a community standing on the cusp of the great social challenges of racial justice, poverty and violence. The purpose is to be in conversation with local community leaders and to listen to the experiences of people of color in Missouri. The Missouri Conference reports.
Here are some of the activities ahead for United Methodists across the connection. If you have an item to share, email firstname.lastname@example.org and put Digest in the subject line.
Saturday, Dec. 24
Christmas Eve — United Methodist Discipleship Ministries offers ideas for a service of lessons and carols, as well as ways to welcome Christmas guests. Resources