Daily Digest - September 11, 2017

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“You take a few deep breaths, you read some Scripture and you keep going.” — The Rev. Alicia Coltzer Besser, on coping with Hurricane Harvey’s effects.

While children enjoy the playground, the adult congregation of Lake Houston United Methodist Church in Huffman, Texas, reacts to the message of the Sunday sermon by the Rev. Frank Coats. Photo by Kathleen Barry, UMNS.

As Irma arrives, those in Harvey’s wake carry on

HUFFMAN, Texas (UMNS) — Even as they worried about those in Hurricane Irma’s path, United Methodists in southeast Texas dealt with damage to homes and churches from Hurricane Harvey. Lake Houston United Methodist Church met outside for the second consecutive Sunday because of its flooded sanctuary. Other churches served as shelters for flood victims and as headquarters for volunteers arriving to help. Sam Hodges and Kathleen Barry report.
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Read about Beyonce's flood relief work with a Houston United Methodist church

Waiting to assess impact of Hurricane Irma

LAKELAND, Fla. (UMNS) — As Hurricane Irma continued its meandering path from the Caribbean to Florida, Georgia and other parts of the Southeastern U.S., United Methodists provided shelter and prepared for relief work, with help from the United Methodist Committee on Relief. United Methodist News Service reporters have the story.
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Personal calls unite Early Response Teams

BATON ROUGE, La. — The Rev. Bob Deich, leader of the Early Response Team for the Louisiana Conference of The United Methodist Church, explains that the team’s motto is to provide a caring Christian presence in the aftermath of disaster. Deich says his own experience trapped in a hurricane as a child informs his commitment to help others cope. 
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Responding to hate: 9/11 and the power of love

NEW YORK — “Whenever we choose to show love to everyone, as Jesus commands, we are choosing to walk in the light,” writes Joe Iovino. Sixteen years after Sept. 11, 2001, Iovino explains how churches and people in New York have learned to respond to an act of hate with an act of love.
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Vandals damage Native American church

LAWRENCE, Kan. — An act of vandalism has stunned the congregation at Lawrence Indian United Methodist Church. Someone climbed the church’s roof and sawed off its Cross-and-Flame logo. As it fell, the cross punctured the church’s roof and severely damaged its gutters. Todd Seifert reports for the Great Plains Conference. 
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Small church in an oversized building

LEMOYNE, Pa. — The Rev. Lewis A. Parks, a United Methodist pastor and author of “Small on Purpose,” describes how smaller congregations can squander their last resources trying to keep up with the demands of an aging facility. He offers a different approach in a Lewis Center for Church Leadership commentary.
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Looking ahead

Here are some of the activities ahead for United Methodists across the connection. If you have a United Methodist event to share, you can add it to the calendar with this submission form.

Friday, Sept. 15

United Methodist Day of Health — Dunwoody United Methodist Church, 1548 Mt. Vernon Road, Dunwoody, Georgia. The United Methodist Church is working to bring better health to people in every place, from our own backyards to the world. Global Ministries, in partnership with the North Georgia Conference, is bringing together local United Methodist churches, health care coordinators, general agency representatives, global health partners and affiliates in this one-day event. Details

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