Daily Digest - September 19, 2022

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“The purpose of Celebrate UMC is to support, encourage and resource those who wish to stay in the UMC.” — The Rev. Cory Smith, on a group that’s active in the Alabama-West Florida Conference.


Grassroots groups talk up The United Methodist Church
AUBURN, Ala. (UM News) — A handful of U.S. conferences that are seeing considerable discussion and action around disaffiliation also have seen the emergence of grassroots groups advocating for churches to remain United Methodist. They go by such names as Celebrate UMC, Stay UMC, Abide South Georgia and That We May Be One. Sam Hodges reports. 
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WCC Assembly closes with call to 'act for justice'
KARLSRUHE, Germany (UM News) — At the end of the 11th General Assembly of the World Council of Churches, delegates called for the “healing of our living planet.” The message, titled “A Call To Act Together,” read: “We will find a strength to act from a unity founded in Christ’s love.” The group also adopted statements on peace, including one denouncing the “illegal and unjustifiable” Russian invasion of Ukraine and another on the Israeli and Palestinian conflict. Klaus Ulrich Ruof reports.
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Read sidebar on peace statements
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Western North Carolina Conference
Outdoor drama showcases Christ's first miracle
PILOT MOUNTAIN, N.C. — A group of small United Methodist churches are joining together to bring to life Jesus’ first miracle of turning water into wine. The outdoor drama “No Ordinary Wine” will be performed on Oct. 2 at the Armfield Civic Center Amphitheater. The Western North Carolina Conference has the story.
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Dakotas Conference

Digital church continues on its own
MITCHELL, S.D. — Started during the height of COVID-19, the Missouri Valley Community Church continues as a stand-alone church for people in North Dakota who prefer to do church online. The community consists of people from three churches in Center, Hazen and Washburn. About 100 people interact through Facebook. Doreen Gosmire and David Stucke report.
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No Daily Digest on Sept. 20-21
There will be no Daily Digest on Tuesday, Sept. 20, and Wednesday, Sept. 21, so that the UM News staff can attend a team retreat. The Digest will resume on Sept. 22.


Archives and History
Professor earns Distinguished Service Award
MADISON, N.J. — United Methodist Priscilla Pope-Levison, a Dallas-based author and professor at Southern Methodist University, was named the 2022 recipient of the Distinguished Service Award by the United Methodist Commission on Archives and History at its annual meeting Sept. 15-16. Ashley Boggan, the agency’s top executive, acknowledged Pope-Levison’s groundbreaking research into the lives of the denomination’s pioneers, especially women in evangelism.
Read press release

Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary 
Partnership forms around helping children
EVANSTON, Ill. — A new initiative, the Garrett Joint Partnership on Theologies of Child Well-being, brings together Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary and the Children’s Defense Fund to work toward helping children thrive. Objectives include nurturing the pipeline of public theologians, generating theological resources for the work and vision of child well-being and supporting innovative scholarship. Garrett is one of 13 United Methodist seminaries in the U.S.
Read press release

Chart compares Advent studies

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Looking for a new study for your small group, congregation or family this Advent? Cokesbury, the retail arm of the United Methodist Publishing House, has put together an interactive comparison chart of its Advent studies so Christians can find the study that best fits their need. 
Learn more
See chart

Religion and Race
Justice work from African perspective

WASHINGTON — “Being the Church with the Oppressed,” a new four-part small-group Bible study from the United Methodist Commission on Religion and Race, was created by and written from the perspectives of four Christian clergypersons from Africa. The study guide is also available in French and Portuguese.
View resource


Churches discern whether to stay or go

Zimbabwe’s Old Mutare Mission Hospital gets a facelift


Friday, Sept. 30-Sunday, Oct. 2
IGNITE 2022 Conference

Thursday, Oct. 6
Signs and Wonders: Explore the Miracle Stories with Amy-Jill Levine

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