Daily Digest - July 31, 2020

“If (John Wesley) was alive today, he would have encouraged people to take preventative measures during worship, give awareness and be very careful with people not to contract the coronavirus as the churches return to a new normal.”
The Rev. Gift Kudakwashe Machinga, Zimbabwe East Conference, on Wesley’s teachings being relevant today.



Turning to Wesley’s class model amid pandemic
HARARE, Zimbabwe (UM News) — The founder of Methodism died more than 200 years ago, but his teachings remain relevant today amid a global pandemic. Churches in Zimbabwe have embraced John Wesley’s concept of small classes to maintain social distancing and encourage spiritual growth at home. Kudzai Chingwe has the story.
Read story 

New England Conference
Exploring Black church history in New England
MORRISVILLE, Vt. — The Rev. John N. Mars, an outspoken abolitionist, in 1864 became the first African American to be received “on trial” for full clergy rights in the Methodist Episcopal Church in New England. The Rev. Patricia J. Thompson, New England Conference, shares Mars’ story and others in an overview of Black history in the conference.
Read story 

South Carolina Conference
Can’t stop vacation Bible school
AYNOR, S.C. — Churches found new, safe ways to do vacation Bible schools during this summer of pandemic. While most opted for virtual schools, others held “Drive-Thru VBS” and still others held limited in-person gatherings. Jessica Brodie reports. 
Read story 

Florida Conference
Preparing for Hurricane Isaias
LAKELAND, Fla. — With Hurricane Isaias winding through the Bahamas, the Florida Conference is urging church members to prepare for the storm even as they manage the risks of COVID-19. The storm is on a trajectory to pass near the east Florida coast this weekend and possibly make landfall in the Carolinas on Aug. 3.
Read story 
See hurricane preparedness resources


UM News includes in the Daily Digest various commentaries about issues in the denomination. The opinion pieces reflect a variety of viewpoints and are the opinions of the writers, not the UM News staff.

Church and Society 
A dream to carry on 
WASHINGTON — The best way to honor civil rights leaders who have died in the past two years — Reps. John Lewis and Elijah Cummings and the Revs. C.T. Vivian and Joseph Lowery — is to continue their work, writes the Rev. Susan Henry-Crowe. “Now is the time to lift high their dreams, press on to the goal of freedom and continue the work that they laid before us,” writes the top executive of the United Methodist Board of Church and Society. 
Read commentary 


Virus spikes close doors again at some churches 

Korean hospital sends 10,000 masks for missionaries 


Monday, Aug. 3-Monday, Sept. 14 
Online class: Out of Exodus — A Journey of Open and Affirming Ministry


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