Daily Digest - May 12, 2016

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“Everyone here is a child of God. Any behavior to the contrary of that truth undermines the gospel and is a choice to live beneath our privilege ” — Bishop Gregory V. Palmer in the episcopal address at General Conference 2016.

Bishop Gregory V. Palmer

Palmer: Trust God’s promise and go forth

PORTLAND, Ore. (UMNS) — Bishop Gregory V. Palmer laid out a path for the 2016 United Methodist General Conference: humility, humility, humility. “Everyone here is a child of God. Any behavior to the contrary of that truth undermines the gospel and is a choice to live beneath our privilege,” Palmer said in the episcopal address on May 11. Kathy L. Gilbert reports.
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At GC2016, Rule 44 still a question

PORTLAND, Ore. (UMNS) — Whether General Conference delegates adopt a new way of dealing with tough issues remains to be seen. For a second time, a vote on the much-debated Rule 44 has been deferred a day. Behind this arcane procedural debate is concern about how United Methodists discuss ministry with gay and lesbian individuals. Heather Hahn has the story.
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Vigil remembers 35 million who died from AIDS

PORTLAND, Ore. (UMNS) — In a response of love and prayer, the 35 million people who have died of AIDS were remembered in a vigil outside the Oregon Convention Center as the 2016 General Conference meets to decide church law for the next four years. “We live in a world with 38 million people who are living with AIDS and 35 million who have died,” said retired Bishop Albert Frederick Fritz Mutti. “Too much of the world ignores this pandemic.” Kathy L. Gilbert reports.
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Local pastors a presence at General Conference

PORTLAND, Ore. (UMNS) — Licensed local pastors cannot serve as delegates to General Conference. But they're a growing part of the United Methodist clergy corps, and leaders of their group are present at the denomination's top law-making assembly, trying to influence legislation. Sam Hodges has the story.
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Delegates focus on Christian conferencing

PORTLAND, Oregon (UMNS) — General Conference delegates spent two hours on May 11 on Christian Conferencing, the practice of engaging in respectful and honest conversations. Leaders expressed hope that today’s session would set the tone as legislative committees begin meeting. Crystal Caviness reports.
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Commentary: Heartbeat of faith

PORTLAND, Ore. (UMNS) — When you think about General Conference too long, almost everything can become a metaphor. Melissa Lauber explains in the Baltimore-Washington Conference’s blog feature, “Thus We Went.”
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Religion and Race sponsors briefing for delegates of color

PORTLAND, Ore. (UMNS) — About 200 delegates of color and friends gathered for a pre-General Conference orientation sponsored by the United Methodist Commission on Religion and Race in the Oregon Convention Center May 10. Participants included leaders of the ethnic caucuses and General Conference monitors as well as African, African-American, Asian and Pacific Islanders, Hispanic and Native American delegates. Yvette Moore reports.
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May 11 wrap-up: Episcopal address, more Rule 44 debate

PORTLAND, Ore. (UMNS) — A day after the celebratory tone of opening worship came a reminder that General Conference is one big, long meeting. As delegates got down to business, debate over one of the Rules of Order will stretch into a third day while the episcopal address urged United Methodists to “trust God and go.”​ Joey Butler has the story.
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Spiritual Formation Academy collaborates with Saint Paul

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — Saint Paul School of Theology and The Academy for Spiritual Formation are working together to offer a Doctor of Ministry in Prophetic Witness and Service with an emphasis in spiritual formation beginning in autumn 2016. This marks the first time a seminary has worked with The Academy for Spiritual Formation, a ministry of The Upper Room, to co-develop an advanced degree.
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Looking ahead

Here are some of the activities ahead for United Methodists across the connection. If you have an item to share, email [email protected] and put Digest in the subject line.


Sunday, May 15

Pentecost ─ Celebrate the guidance of the Holy Spirit and the birthday of Christ’s church with worship resources from United Methodist Discipleship Ministries.


Monday, May 16

Higher Education Night — 6:30 p.m., Portland Ballroom, Oregon Convention Center, Portland, Ore. All delegates, bishops and individuals attending General Conference 2016 are invited to join in a night of food, music and festivity to celebrate United Methodist-related schools, colleges and universities.Details

More upcoming United Methodist events

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