Daily Digest - January 28, 2015

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"Rev. Campbell crosses boundaries as she brings this divine mystery and vehicle of grace to the people of the National Cathedral." — Bishop Marcus Matthews, on historic Eucharist-sharing service.


A United Methodist ‘first’ at National Cathedral


WASHINGTON (UMNS) — When the Rev. Gina Campbell presided over communion Sunday at Washington National Cathedral, it was a visible sign of Christian unity between the Episcopal and United Methodist churches. Melissa Lauber of the Baltimore-Washington Conference was there.
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Perkins honors leader in school’s desegregation

DALLAS (UMNS) — Southern Methodist University’s Perkins School of Theology on Feb. 2 will honor two 2015 Distinguished Alumni Award recipients, including a leader in the school’s desegregation. The Rev. James Vernon Lyles, who was one of the first African-American students to earn a Perkins degree, received a Master of Theology degree in 1955. Perkins also will honor the Rev. Ted J. Dotts Jr., who earned a Master of Theology degree in 1964.
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Praising God with puppet power

FORT PIERCE, Fla. (UMNS) — A closet full of puppets, music and materials gave volunteers at Community United Methodist Church a whole new way to teach Sunday Bible school one summer. Eighteen years later, the "Hands of the Lord Puppeteers" is still active. Many United Methodist churches have embraced performance art, and puppet ministries in particular, as a way to praise the Lord, teach Bible lessons and reach out to the community. Kathy Steele has the story for the Florida Conference.
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Why not to engage unhappy folks in email

SOMERVILLE, Mass. (UMNS) — It’s a predicament many pastors have experienced — how to respond to an email from an unhappy parishioner. The Rev. Molly Phinney Baskette has some advice: Don’t. In a column for the Lewis Center for Church Leadership, the pastor instead shares her tips for drawing an email correspondent into a face-to-face conversation.
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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, Jan. 29
Free webinar "Church Council" — 6:30 p.m. CST. This overview is for new and continuing leaders to explore the year ahead. The Church Council or Leadership Team will discover support and resources for building and overseeing a comprehensive plan for ministry and discipleship. The webinar includes resources for single board leadership model. Details.

Friday-Saturday, Jan. 30-31
Louisiana Conference United Methodist Men "Reaching Out" — The conference at The Wesley Center in Woodworth, Louisiana, will include golf, skeet shooting and worship — while participants also learn about reducing domestic violence. This is a United Methodist Men initiative. Details.

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

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