Daily Digest — September 24, 2015

“He said, ‘People are who they are, and I have to love them and focus on changing lives here in prison.’” — The Rev. Kiboko I. Kiboko quoting his brother Vano, imprisoned in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Political dissident leads revival behind bars

KINSHASA, Democratic Republic of Congo (UMNS) – Vano Kalembe Kiboko is wrongfully imprisoned in his native Democratic Republic of Congo, according to human rights observers. That has not stopped the United Methodist lay evangelist from leading his fellow prisoners to new faith in Christ. Heather Hahn reports.
Read story and post a comment

Commentary: Walking with Pope Francis

WASHINGTON (UMNS) – The Rev. Maidstone Mulenga has pledged to walk with Pope Francis in his visit to the Baltimore-Washington area, particularly as the pontiff addresses people affected by crime and the justice system. Mulenga writes about United Methodist healing communities that welcome formerly incarcerated people and families of prisoners to the denomination’s churches.
Read his commentary

Number of U.S. bishops could drop

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) – The number of United Methodist bishops in the denomination’s U.S. North Central and Northeastern jurisdictions could be reduced because of a decline in reported membership numbers, the General Council on Finance and Administration has announced.
Read press release

Agency transforms global church communications

FREETOWN, Sierra Leone (UMNS) – United Methodist Communications, with General Conference support, has equipped communicators in Africa, Asia and Europe to share the stories of the global church. “With training and support, African communicators have been empowered to tell Africa’s story to the world,” said Phileas Jusu of the Sierra Leone Annual Conference. Tafadzwa Mudambanuki has the story.
Read story and post a comment

Task force: Korean Americans face unique challenges

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) – A task force that studied and analyzed experiences of first-generation Korean Americans pursuing ordination in The United Methodist Church found a lack of networking opportunities was one of the challenges they faced. Tyrus Sturgis reports for the United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry.
Read story

Local pastors help in reaching Hispanics

HOUSTON (UMNS) – Hispanic local pastors in The United Methodist Church now outnumber Hispanic ordained elders, and some annual conferences are strategically using local pastors to reach the growing U.S. Hispanic demographic. That’s one finding of the UMNS series “Trending Local: The Rise of United Methodist Local Pastors,” with articles by Sam Hodges and photos by Mike DuBose. It begins Sept. 28.

Looking ahead

Here are some of the activities ahead for United Methodists across the connection. If you have an item to share, email [email protected] and put Digest in the subject line.

Monday, Sept. 28
Alumni Day at Methodist Theological School in Ohio 
– 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. EDT. The United Methodist seminary will honor retired Bishop Judith Craig, bishop-in-residence and visiting professor in the Dickhaut Chair of Church Leadership. Four pastors also will receive the John and Ruth Mount Alumni Awards for Distinguished Service. Details

Monday, Sept. 28 to Friday, Oct. 16
Online course "Living Our United Methodist Beliefs" for lay servants from BeADisciple.com
 – The history, heritage, beliefs, mission and culture of The United Methodist Church for newcomers or longtime members who to know what’s distinctive about being a United Methodist. This course has been approved by United Methodist Discipleship Ministries as an advanced course in lay servant ministries and is the “heritage” class required for lay speaker certification. Therefore, the course provides 1 CEU for clergy and CLMs also are available. $65. Details

You can see more educational opportunities and other upcoming events in the life of the church here.

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