"We acknowledge that given the parameters of a global church on four continents, the desire for representation and the practice of a democratic polity, there will be keen interest, speculation and questioning of the commission’s composition." — Bishop Bruce R. Ough, Council of Bishops president, on the Commission on a Way Forward.
Varied reaction to Way Forward Commission
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — United Methodists are responding to the Commission on a Way Forward membership with a mix of praise and deep concern about who is not at the table. If anything, the varied responses underline the tough task before this international body of United Methodists charged with preserving denominational unity despite divisions regarding homosexuality. Heather Hahn and Kathy L. Gilbert report.
Malaria, other illnesses up since Ebola
BO, Sierra Leone (UMNS) — Staff at United Methodist hospitals in Sierra Leone report increases in the number of patients with malaria since the end of the 2014-15 Ebola outbreak. Doctors cite a number of reasons for higher infection rates, including the interruption of some prevention efforts during Ebola. Cases of typhoid fever, hepatitis and high blood pressure also are on the rise. Sierra Leone communicator Phileas Jusu reports.
Read previous stories about life after Ebola
Pastor helped unite Great Plains, Zimbabwe
WICHITA, Kan. (UMNS) — The Great Plains Conference partnership with United Methodists in Zimbabwe owes much to the Rev. A. Mark Conard, who made multiple trips to the African country and championed support for its pastors and churches. Conard died Oct. 18, at age 68, after a 42-year ministry career. David Burke of the Great Plains Conference has the story.
Seminary hosts 'Methodist Pub Trivia' night
WASHINGTON (UMNS) — A United Methodist professor and some students walk into a bar. It’s no joke, just a fun way to learn history. Erik Alsgaard of the Baltimore-Washington Conference has the story.
Wesleyan scholars explore Holy Communion
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — A book titled “A Wesleyan Theology of the Eucharist: The Presence of God for Christian Life and Ministry” is just out from the United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry. The collection of essays by Wesleyan scholars seeks to recover the importance of Holy Communion. The Rev. Jason Vickers edited the book.
Read press release
Church offers Election Day Communion
PADUCAH, Ky. (UMNS) — Lone Oak United Methodist Church in Paducah will offer Holy Communion on Election Day, an effort at healing after what the pastor describes as a “particularly venomous” campaign season. Lane Gardner Camp reports for the Memphis Conference.
Here are some of the activities ahead for United Methodists across the connection. If you have an item to share, email firstname.lastname@example.org and put Digest in the subject line.
Friday, Nov. 4 to Sunday, Nov. 6
"Imagine What’s Next" conference — Sponsored by the United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry, the gathering in Atlanta is designed to help college students connect their gifts with innovative discipleship. Details
Saturday, Nov. 5
"Discovering God’s Future for Your Church" conference and live stream — 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. EDT. Hosted by the Lewis Center for Church Leadership of Wesley Theological Seminary, the event will provide a step-by-step process to help congregations discern God’s vision for their future. Details