Daily Digest: June 13, 2014

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“Faith is honoring God and people; faith is also integrity and responsibility.  At the end of the story, faith for Joseph is obedience of trust in God.” — K.K. Yeo, New Testament professor at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary.

Commentary: Relief needs persist after typhoon

MANILA, Philippines (UMNS) — More than six months after Typhoon Haiyan killed 6,268 people, hundreds of thousands of survivors in the Central Philippines still need proper relief and rehabilitation. April Grace G. Mercado outlines the challenges in her commentary.

Read commentary and post a comment

Criticism for "local option" idea on homosexuality

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) - A group of United Methodist clergy, theologians and laity is pushing back against the idea of letting churches and annual conferences choose to depart from current church law regarding homosexuality. The group says in an open letter that the "local option" idea, pushed by the Revs. Adam Hamilton and Mike Slaughter and others under the title "A Way Forward," would "only extend localize and exacerbate the acrimonious debate."

Read letter

Read interview with Hamilton about "A Way Forward"

Lessons from Joseph, Jesus’ ‘old man’

ARLINGTON, Texas (UMNS) — “Like others in our salvation story, God turned Joseph’s life over,” says the Rev. Jarrod Johnston of First United Methodist Church in Arlington. Joseph’s example offers lessons for fathers and other Christian disciples today. Happy Father’s Day from UMNS.

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Diverse speakers headline AIDS conference

DENVER (UMNS) — Four United Methodist bishops, an international medical AIDS specialist, two seminary professors from Zimbabwe and Kenya, local United Methodist pastors, a Muslim woman and people living with HIV will be among the keynote speakers at the upcoming equipping United Methodist conference for HIV and AIDS ministries. The event is scheduled for Sept. 11-13 in Denver.  Sponsored by the United Methodist Global AIDS Fund Committee, the conference theme will be “Countdown to Zero: Just Save One.” Registration deadline is Aug. 15.

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Remembering former Delaware Conference

OAKS, Pa. (UMNS) — The 150th anniversary of the former, all-black Delaware Annual Conference is noted in a recent resolution from the Eastern Pennsylvania Annual (regional) Conference. That pioneering Delaware Conference emerged in 1864 from efforts to afford oppressed and often ostracized African-American members of the Methodist Episcopal Church the right to dignity, full participation and self-determination. It stretched across five states, from Virginia up to New York. Now United Methodists are raising money for a documentary on the Delaware Conference, which dissolved in 1964 when members integrated geographically based conferences. John W. Coleman of the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference has the story.

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See promotional video

Church celebrates Smallville with ‘super’ sermon series

HUTCHINSON, Kan. (UMNS) — It’s a bird. It’s a plane. No, it’s inspiration for a super sermon series. During the month when his Kanas town had its “Smallville Festival,” the Rev. Jeff Slater of First United Methodist Church in the Great Plains Annual (regional) Conference decided to offer his own Smallville sermon series to teach “heroic lessons.” “I suddenly remembered the Kents were Methodist,” Slater said. As Clark Kent himself might say, read all about it from the Hutchinson News.

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No, it’s not the Oscars … it’s the Wesleys

SHREVEPORT, La. (UMNS) — Was that Billy Crystal? No, it was Louisiana’s own Rev. Matt Rawle serving as host to the first ever “Wesley Awards,” held Tuesday night of the Louisiana Annual Conference.  Winners, recognized for implementing creative ministries that embody the conference’s visions, got John  Wesley bobbleheads. Betty Backstrom has the story.

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