“Interfaith cooperation for the common good is not an option but a must in our day and age.” — Achim Härtner, a United Methodist professor at Reutlingen School of Theology in Germany.
German theologian makes White House connection
WASHINGTON (UMNS) — For a United Methodist theologian from Germany, an invitation to a U.S. forum for educators came at an opportune time. Achim Härtner was one of 50 international guests from 24 countries attending the “Fifth President’s Interfaith and Community Service Campus Challenge.” Linda Bloom has the story.
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‘The day I lost Momma’
JACKSON, Miss. (UMNS) — “It was a little more than six months after my 18th birthday that the man she chose to marry killed her because she was tired of his drunken ways and abusive language,” Bishop James E. Swanson Sr. writes in an essay about the tragic day he lost his mother. The essay originally appeared in UM Men magazine.
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Safe, healthy churches training
KING OF PRUSSIA, Pa. (UMNS) — October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and United Methodist churches are hosting training sessions to help Christian leaders understand the dynamics of domestic and sexual violence, as well as the impact on individuals, the church and the community. Sixty clergy and lay members from the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference have attended a training led by FaithTrust Institute and another is being held Oct. 23-24. John Coleman reports for the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference.
$1.4 million for U.S. recovery
NEW YORK (UMNS) — Directors of the United Methodist Committee on Relief approved $1.4 million recently to assist communities in Oklahoma, Texas and Maryland where moments in the headlines because of disaster have long faded, but recovery is far from over. Linda Unger reports for UMCOR.
Scam e-mail seeks relief funds
COLUMBIA, S.C. (UMNS) — As South Carolina braces for the possibility of more flooding, United Methodist officials urged caution about relief requests. A warning on the conference website said a scam email from someone claiming to be South Carolina Bishop Jonathan Holston is requesting funds for flood relief. The warning urged United Methodist not to send funds or give out personal information without first verifying the authenticity of the request. In doubt? Call the conference center at 803-786-9486. The conference is currently collecting flood relief funds through the conference website and the treasurer.
Donate to the conference disaster fund
Church helps families after hotel condemnation
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (UMNS) — After city officials condemned an extended-stay hotel, East Ridge United Methodist Church went into overdrive to help newly homeless families. The church already had a relationship with many of the families for three years. Annette Spence of Holston Conference’s The Call has the story.
Taking church to the laundromat
ATLANTA (UMNS) — Members of McKendree United Methodist Church in Lawrenceville, Georgia, go to local laundromats to offer free detergent, fabric softener and even quarters for running the machines. It’s one example of the “church can happen anywhere” philosophy in the Atlanta Emory District of the North Georgia Conference. Ansley Brackin reports for the conference.
New higher education executive selected
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — The Rev. Edward Roslof, senior director of the MIT-Skoltech Initiative at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Russia and an elder in the California-Pacific Conference, is the new associate general secretary for the United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry’s Division of Higher Education. He will join the agency on Jan. 1, 2016.
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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-Saturday, Oct. 16-17
Right Next Door Conference: Beyond the Walls of Church and Neighbor — First United Methodist Church, Ankeny, Iowa. Women at the Well, a United Methodist congregation inside the walls of the women’s prison in Mitchellville, Iowa, is collaborating with Prison Congregations of America and the United Methodist Board of Church and Society to host a weekend of presentations and workshops designed to inspire, equip, and empower churches to connect with people churches may have missed. The conference will include a keynote address by Sister Helen Prejean, author of Dead Man Walking, and various workshops addressing prison ministry, advocacy, mental illness, domestic violence, addiction, how to reduce barriers in church, and more. Details and registration.