Daily Digest: March 21, 2014

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“In this community, it's the 12-year-olds and the 13-year-olds who have to make major decisions about their lives. Whether they're going to college or prison, that decision is really made at 13. So, we have a big heart for figuring out how to minister to young adolescent children. …” – The Rev. Tiffany Thomas, South Tryon Community United Methodist Church. advertisement

Not yet 30, this pastor has big mission
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (UMNS) — Under 30 and out of seminary, the Rev. Tiffany Thomas is thriving where God has planted her. "The community has a lot to teach about who God is and about how God loves and how God provides in the midst of suffering, in the midst of need,” Thomas said of her inner-city congregation.

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More women pastors but still obstacles
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — A recent survey showed women pastors in The United Methodist Church finding more acceptance and more reasons to stay in local church ministry. But, Garlinda Burton explains, women - especially racial-ethnic women - are more likely to move to ministries beyond congregations, citing lack of support by bishops and cabinets and underuse of their "gifts" for ministry.

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Tech enables health care in remote areas
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — “Mobile phones seem to be everywhere in Africa, and they’re keeping people in touch with health, education, banking, and community empowerment,” writes Neelley Hicks, director of information and communications technology for development at United Methodist Communications. She explains how “mHealth” is changing lives.

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Africa University dedicates Ubuntu Center
MUTARE, Zimbabwe (UMNS) — A delegation from the West Michigan Annual Conference, led by Bishop Deborah Kiesey, watched March 19 as the ribbon was cut to open a guest center on the campus of Africa University. The $1 million, 46-bed Ubuntu Retreat Center will host visiting faculty, conferences and mission teams from around the world. Mark Doyal, Michigan Area communications director, has the story.

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Florida toymakers build children’s smiles
EAST LAKE, Fla. (UMNS) — East Lake United Methodist Church has become home to the toymakers of East Lake, volunteers who build toys for children in distress. Tampabay.com tells how the 100 volunteers create a beehive of activity as they carry out their mission.

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Philippines seminary holds commencement
MALAYBALAY, Philippines (UMNS) — Ten United Methodist graduates received Master of Divinity degrees from the Bishop Han Theological Seminary during a March 18 ceremony. The seminary’s president and founder is the Rev. Sang Ho Han, senior pastor of Jooan Methodist Church in Inchon, Korea.

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Small disciples raise money for Imagine No Malaria
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (UMNS) — Children in the Alabama-West Florida Annual (regional) Conference set up an impromptu lemonade stand, advertised by their mothers on Instagram, to raise money for Imagine No Malaria. They raised $61 — enough to pay for six insecticide-treated bed nets.

Ideas to raise money for Imagine No Malaria

Congregation works to ensure building serves
ROBSTON, Texas (UMNS) — The congregation of First United Methodist Church realized it no longer could support its church property, but it was determined to try to make sure the facility continues to bless the community. Alicetex.com tells how these parishioners came to a difficult decision and what they hope the future holds.

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Jesus and the poor: A Lenten reflection
WASHINGTON (UMNS) — “The mission of salvation started with an outreach to the poor,” writes Rose Farhata, a clergy candidate from Liberia and intern at the United Methodist Board of Church and Society. She says the way Jesus treated those in poverty verified God’s love beyond physical appearance.

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