Daily Digest - June 24, 2022

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“I think we’re in a very, very sad and difficult time. I know that some will be celebrating this. … We are already a fractured country; this is going to fracture us more.” The Rev. Kennetha Bigham-Tsai, a veteran General Conference delegate, about the Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade.


United Methodists react to end of Roe v. Wade
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — United Methodists on all sides of the abortion issue were alternately stunned and satisfied after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Roe v. Wade would no longer be the law of the land. Jim Patterson has the story.
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Missouri Conference
Judge dismisses disaffiliating church’s lawsuit
ST. CHARLES, Mo. — Late June 22, a St. Charles County judge granted a motion to dismiss the lawsuit filed by Morning Star Church against the Missouri Annual Conference. Morning Star Church sought to leave the denomination with property without using the disaffiliation process in the Book of Discipline, the denomination’s law book. The county court based its dismissal on the church autonomy doctrine, which holds that issues of church government and doctrine belong to a denomination, not to a state court. Fred Koenig reports. 
Read story 
Read Missouri Conference’s FAQ on disaffiliation (PDF)

Michigan Conference
Two grants help disaster recovery
LANSING, Mich. — Grants from the Otsego Community Foundation and United Methodist Committee on Relief will help Detroit and Gaylord, Michigan, recover from weather disasters. Detroit was awarded $800,000 from UMCOR to speed recovery after flooding. Otsego awarded $50,000 to help Gaylord after a tornado in May. James Deaton has the story.
Read story 
Gaylord citizens work to recover from storm 


World Council of Churches
Ecumenical group elects new top executive
GENEVA — At its June meeting, the central committee of the World Council of Churches elected the Rev. Jerry Pillay as the ecumenical body’s ninth general secretary. A theologian and member of the Uniting Presbyterian Church in Southern Africa, he will be the ecumenical organization’s first general secretary from South Africa. The United Methodist Church is a member of the World Council of Churches.
Read press release 


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.

Rethink Church
Following in faithfulness
RICHARDSON, Texas — Our primary call as Christians is to follow rather than lead, which can be a tough pill to swallow in an individualistic society, writes Shandon Klein. Following requires a sort of faithfulness, the placement of trust in another outside of yourself. Klein, a ministry associate at First United Methodist Church Richardson and a certified candidate for elder, looks at how even John Wesley set out to follow his calling and ended up leading a movement.
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Monday, July 11-Tuesday, Aug. 2
Online course: A Contemporary View of Christian Eschatology

Monday, Aug. 1-Wednesday, Aug. 3
Black Clergywomen of The United Methodist Church Annual Meeting    


New era for church and Boy Scouts of America
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UM News) —The United Methodist Church will continue to partner with the Boy Scouts of America but in a new relationship that should lighten the load for local churches. The shift comes after a difficult two years that included the BSA’s child sex abuse-related bankruptcy proceeding and the pandemic. Sam Hodges reports.
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Africa University celebrates 28th commencement
MUTARE, Zimbabwe (UM News) — The academic achievements of 712 graduates from 18 African countries were recognized at Africa University's 28th commencement. The graduates were encouraged to imagine their place and role in creating Africa’s future. The AU communications team has the story.
Read story      

New 2022 annual conference reports posted
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UM News) — United Methodist News is posting 2022 annual conference reports. New this week are the Alabama-West Florida, Baltimore-Washington, Holston, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Peninsula-Delaware and South Georgia conferences.
Read reports 

Commentary: United Methodist bishops in global perspective
ATLANTA (UM News) — Different rules around retirement and the holding of episcopal elections are just two examples of how processes regarding bishops vary across the global United Methodist Church. Dr. David W. Scott, with Global Ministries, explains the differences and the history behind them, as well as the potential challenges they pose for the future.
Read commentary     

Commentary: Florida Conference board caused harm
LAKELAND, Fla. (UM News) — The Rev. Dr. Jack Jackson agrees harm was done when an entire 16-person slate of provisional membership candidates did not win approval from the Florida Conference clergy session. But Jackson says the blame belongs not with the clergy session but with the conference’s board of ordained ministry for ignoring church law when trying to advance LGBTQ candidates on the track to becoming ordained elders or deacons.
Read commentary   
UM News: Clergy session vote highlights LGBTQ divide

Commentary: Apply Wesleyan lens to clergy-session controversy
LAKELAND, Fla. (UM News) — The Rev. Dr. Paul W. Chilcote believes it’s a time for healing, not recriminations, in regard to the Florida Conference clergy session’s decision to disapprove a 16-person slate for provisional membership. Chilcote also sees Methodism’s tradition of “ecclesial disobedience” as key to evaluating a controversy that underscored United Methodist divisions over full LGBTQ inclusion.
Read commentary    

United Methodist Communications
Connection congregation lives up to its name
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — When two churches in the Donelson neighborhood voted to merge in 2019, the combined congregation made a statement with their choice of name for the new entity. Connection United Methodist Church has been living up to its name ever since. In addition to a close relationship with Hickman Elementary School, Connection allows two other churches to worship there and houses a counseling service that bills on a sliding scale. Jim Patterson has the story.
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United Methodist Communications
John Wesley and the Enneagram
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Suzanne Stabile is a bestselling author, a longtime United Methodist and the wife of a United Methodist pastor. She also is internationally known as the Enneagram Master. On the latest episode of the “Get Your Spirit in Shape” podcast, Stabile shares how she uses the Enneagram to feel closer to God and why she believes John Wesley’s Enneagram number influenced his founding of Methodism.
Listen to podcast     

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