Daily Digest - October 15, 2015

“I am often ignored when I, an older woman, walk into a church alone. Immediate greetings come if I am accompanied by a male companion … . But we older women aren’t called invisible for nothing.” — The Rev. Christy Thomas on reviewing worship services.

Pastor turns worship service reviewer

DALLAS (UMNS) — The Rev. Christy Thomas spent a year reviewing 50 worship services for her local newspaper in Denton, Texas, an odyssey that took her to all manner of churches and even a mosque and synagogue. The retired United Methodist pastor, a popular blogger, had plenty of highs and lows on the worship trail. Sam Hodges reports.
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Health needs assessed in Sierra Leone villages

MANJAMA, Sierra Leone (UMNS) — A team of United Methodist health workers visited eight villages to engage residents in a new community health program aimed at reducing maternal and infant death. Phileas Jusu has the story.
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Update: Churchgoers join push to rename Columbus Day

OKLAHOMA CITY (UMNS) — United Methodists have been part of efforts across the United States to rename Columbus Day as Indigenous Peoples' Day. While some municipalities have made the change, the Oklahoma City Council on Oct. 13 voted 5-4 against renaming the second Monday in October.
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Global gadgets for small-town churches

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — New technology is making a difference in developing countries. Laurens Glass of United Methodist Communications offers examples of how the same tech innovations can boost ministries at local churches.
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Florida Conference highlights local pastors

LAKELAND, Fla. (UMNS) — The recent UMNS series about licensed local pastors in The United Methodist Church has prompted some conferences to do their own stories. Susan Green and Mary Ann DeSantis of the Florida Conference highlight the ministry of two local pastors, one retired from the U.S. Navy and the other a former opera singer.
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Read UMNS series

Computer lab keeps rural students current

MUREWA, Zimbabwe (UMNS) — Staff at Murewa Central Primary School want to ensure children at the rural school at the United Methodist mission are as knowledgeable about Internet and communication technology as their peers in urban schools. Taurai Emmanuel Maforo reports on the dedication of a new computer lab at the school.
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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, Oct. 18
Laity Sunday — United Methodist Discipleship Ministries offers suggested Scripture, prayers and hymns for this day of celebrating discipleship. This year's theme is "Disciples Called to Action: Creating Unity in Ministry." Resources.

Thursday-Saturday, Oct. 22-24
"Great Expectations for Boomers and Beyond" Conference — Event at First United Methodist Church in Winter Park, Florida. The gathering aims to equip church leaders to cultivate the spiritual gifts of older adults as disciples of Jesus Christ. Missy Buchanan, adult advocate and author, and Marc Middleton, founder of the Growing Bolder web-based media group, will be speakers. $125. Details.

You can see more educational opportunities and other upcoming events in the life of the church here.

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