“Those of us who love Dallas and call it home have had five deaths in the family.”
— Former President George W. Bush, a United Methodist, at the interfaith service for the five slain Dallas police officers.
United Methodists help with service for slain officers
DALLAS (UMNS) — United Methodists assisted with the July 12 interfaith memorial service in Dallas for five police officers slain by a sniper. A United Methodist elder was one of those chosen to pray before remarks by President Obama and former President George W. Bush. University Park United Methodist Church contributed singers to an interfaith choir, which sang a hymn composed by a United Methodist who teaches at Drew Theological School. Sam Hodges reports.
Baton Rouge church supports youth rally
BATON ROUGE, La. (UMNS) — Wesley United Methodist Church served as a start and end point for a peaceful youth rally on July 10 in response to the shooting death of Alton Sterling. The Rev. Joe Connelly, Wesley’s pastor, said that later, a “rowdier” crowd of adults began a second march that ended in 48 arrests. Connelly talked about the rally in an interview with the Rev. Todd Rossnagel and Betty Backstrom of the Louisiana Conference. Sterling’s funeral is set for July 15.
Listen to interview
Follow bishop election ballots
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — United Methodist Communications offers two ways for people to keep up with U.S. bishop elections, set for July 13-16. You can follow the balloting on your phone by texting keyword ELECTIONS to 615-933-2737. You also can get updates via Facebook Messenger. Just type “Elections” in the link below and select the jurisdiction or jurisdictions you want to follow.
To sign up for Facebook Messenger alerts
5 keys to become more inclusive churches
WASHINGTON (UMNS) — To be credible witnesses, churches must become more inclusive communities that embrace oneness across racial, ethnic and class distinctions, write Mark DeYmaz and Bob Whitesel. The two are co-authors of “re:Mix: Transitioning Your Church to Living Color” (Abingdon Press). In a commentary for the Lewis Center for Church Leadership, they offer guidance to help churches become more inclusive.
5 conferences join reproductive rights' group
PORTLAND, Ore. (UMNS) — The Oregon-Idaho, California-Nevada, New England, New York and Pacific-Northwest Conference all voted to join the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice and support the faith coalition that advocates for women’s reproductive health and abortion. The Rocky Mountain Conference joined the Colorado chapter. Kathy L. Gilbert updates an earlier UMNS story.
2016 annual conference reports
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — United Methodist News Service is posting reports from all the annual conference sessions. New reports this week include Desert Southwest, Oklahoma Indian Missionary Conference and Rio Texas.
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.
Thursday-Friday, July 21-22
Young Preachers Festival and Conference — The gathering will be at United Methodist Church of the Resurrection, 13720 Roe Ave, Leawood, Kansas. United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry is helping to organize the event for seminarians, declared candidates for ministry and young clergy to cultivate their preaching skills. $79. Details