Ruling opens door for bishop elections in 2022
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UM News) — The United Methodist Church’s top court ruled that the Council of Bishops has the authority to call jurisdictional conferences this year to elect and assign new U.S. episcopal leaders but not to change the date when those new bishops take office. Heather Hahn reports.
Police make arrest in slaying of Atlanta pastor
ATLANTA (UM News) — Many are mourning the Rev. Marita Y. Harrell, a 57-year-old United Methodist pastor in Atlanta who was stabbed to death earlier this week. Police in DeKalb County, part of the Metro Atlanta area, said they have arrested a suspect and obtained warrants for murder and arson. A TV station reported that Harrell had been mentoring and counseling the suspect. Harrell, a lifelong Methodist, turned to ministry in midlife and most recently had been leading Atlanta’s Connections at Metropolitan United Methodist Church. Sam Hodges reports.
United Women in Faith
Women’s Assembly attendees serve Orlando community
ORLANDO, Fla. — Three hundred women came to Assembly 2022 a day early to participate in an Ubuntu Day of Service, a day of volunteer work supporting outreach organizations in Florida, site of this year’s United Women in Faith event, May 20-22. Participants put together meal, hygiene and community garden packets to benefit three local hunger and children’s organizations. Tara Barnes has the story.
Black churches featured in podcast
COLUMBIA, Mo. — The Missouri Conference’s Faith and Race Podcast is in its third season. The current season’s theme is “The Saints Before Us,” and episodes highlight the history of five of the conference’s historically Black churches. The first episode looks at Pitt’s Chapel United Methodist Church in Springfield.
Listen to Pitt’s Chapel episode
Church spotlights missing indigenous women
AURORA, Ill. — Wesley United Methodist Church in suburban Chicago used a special display to recognize Missing Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls Awareness Day on May 5. The church installed eight red dresses on a clothesline between poles on the church lawn. Al Benson reports.
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 UM News staff.
The threat of inflation explained
GLENVIEW, Ill. — Double-digit inflation, happening in the U.S. for the first time since 1981, erodes the spending power of consumers because prices rise faster than salaries can keep pace. Commodities, which are used to produce goods, can be a hedge against inflation for investors. Wespath is maintaining its disciplined approach to investing during the current inflationary period, says John Halwax, managing director of institutional investment services for Wespath Benefits and Investments.
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TOP STORIES FROM THE WEEK
Strangers and sojourners
TAPACHULA, Mexico (UM News) — As record numbers of migrants continue to cross Mexico’s southern border, the Methodist Church of Mexico is seeking new ways to be in ministry with immigrant families on the move. A UM News team accompanied Mexican church leaders and longtime partners from The United Methodist Church in April on visits with migrants, other faith communities and charitable and civic leaders in southern Mexico as they sought ways to help. Mike DuBose shares a photo essay.
UM News immigration photo essay: ‘I Was a Stranger …’
Churches condemn hate, urge action after shootings
BUFFALO, N.Y. (UM News) — After what officials quickly identified as a racist attack, United Methodists are responding with prayers, counseling and condemnations of hate. Many church members in Buffalo are also grieving after the mass shooting at a grocery store claimed the lives of friends and loved ones. United Methodists also are responding after a gunman opened fire at a Presbyterian church in Laguna Woods, California. Heather Hahn reports.
Ministry helping sexual violence survivors receives award
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UM News) — Kit Evans-Ford, one of the Wesleyan Investive Tom Locke Award winners for 2022, started an organization to employ female survivors of sexual violence. She and the other three award winners will each receive $50,000 to grow their leadership and innovative potential. Kathy Gilbert has her story.
Asking the hard questions about race
WASHINGTON (UM News) — The Rev. Giovanni Arroyo poses a difficult question to white United Methodists who say they want an end to racism. “Do you want racial justice enough to voluntarily relinquish some of your power?” A native of Puerto Rico, he knows firsthand what it’s like to be a minority in America, and that experience informs the way he pursues his mission as The United Methodist Church’s point person on inclusion. Jim Patterson has the story.
Listen to Our Conexión podcast with Arroyo on racism and Christianity
More support for African agriculture
ATLANTA (UM News) — More than $13 million in grants and disbursements were approved during the May 11-12 spring meeting of the United Methodist Board of Global Ministries. The Bishop Yambasu Agricultural Initiative continues to be a top priority, with $3.5 million approved to be spent realizing the late bishop’s dream of making the church in Africa self-sufficient through agriculture. Jim Patterson has the story.
UM News: Bishop Yambasu Agriculture Initiative harvests first crops
Commentary: Autonomy, division mark Methodist tradition
ATLANTA (UM News) — The recent move by United Methodists in Bulgaria and Romania to leave the denomination is the latest in a history of separations within the Methodist tradition. The process of international division is likely to be unpredictable, and existing church processes may not be well suited to the purpose, writes the Rev. Dr. David W. Scott. This is the second in an ongoing series of commentaries that Scott will be writing for UM News titled, “Our World, Our Parish.”
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