Daily Digest: September 17, 2014

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“I am keenly supportive of the celebration of national identity but believe that is not undermined by remaining in union.” - The Rev. Lilly Twist, referring to the Sept. 18 vote for Scottish independence from the United Kingdom.

British Methodists watch Scottish independence vote

EDINBURGH, Scotland (UMNS) — Thursday’s vote on independence for Scotland could have an impact on The Methodist Church in Britain. Religious denominations in the United Kingdom have discussed implications of a “yes” vote, but have not taken a position on the issue, says the Rev. David Easton, chairman of the church's Scotland District.

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Bishop Middleton named interim leader in New York

NEW YORK (UMNS) — Retired Bishop Jane Allen Middleton will be the interim bishop for the New York Annual (regional) Conference, from Jan. 1, 2015, through Aug. 31, 2016. Bishop Warner Brown, president of the Council of Bishops, announced that the Executive Committee of the council has approved the assignment, recommended by the Northeastern Jurisdiction College of Bishops. Retired Bishop Neil Irons will continue to serve as interim until Dec. 31. Irons has been interim bishop since Bishop Martin McLee went on leave because of illness in July. McLee passed away Sept. 6.

Mourners celebrate life of Bishop McLee

NEW YORK (UMNS) — In song, dance and words, thousands of mourners, including dozens of bishops, celebrated the life of Bishop Martin D. McLee at the Riverside Church in New York City on Monday. McLee, 58, died Sept. 6 after an illness — just over two years after he was elected a bishop of The United Methodist Church. The Rev. Maidstone Mulenga reports on the funeral.

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Civil rights movement ‘a galaxy away’

MARSHALL, Texas (UMNS) — “This offering may be a somewhat unusual entry among these reflections on Freedom Summer as it comes from the perspective of a somewhat shallow and surprisingly callow white male suburban teenager,” Stanley Statser, now an adjunct online U.S. history professor at United Methodist-related Wiley College. He shares the perspective of a white Texan teenager in 1964.

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Their problems are our problems

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) – As the Ebola epidemic continues to spread amid warnings by Doctors Without Borders that it is out of control, Dr. Michael T. Osterholm writes that health professionals are not talking publicly about the potential for Ebola to mutate into an even more dangerous form by developing the ability for airborne transmission. The Rev. Larry Hollon, top executive for United Methodist Communications, writes that the information is a call to action.

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NOMADS gather in Missouri

BRANSON, Mo. (UMNS) — The NOMADS travel the country, living in RVs while doing repairs and renovations at United Methodist sites. In early September, the organization’s annual national roundup drew 120 rigs to Branson for worship, fellowship and time with two bishops. Fred Koenig of the Missouri Annual (regional) Conference has the story.

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Running your socks off for ministry

ABERDEEN, S.D. (UMNS) — A lot of struggling people in the North Dakota oil fields will be wearing better socks because of North Highland United Methodist Church in Aberdeen. Doreen Gosmire of the Dakotas Conference has the story.

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Is Sunday school helping to kill church?

HOUSTON (UMNS) — Jonathan Aigner, a United Methodist worship leader, suggests in his blog “Ponder Anew” that churches may be doing youngsters and themselves a disservice by corralling kids in Sunday school while parents worship.

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