Daily Digest: September 8, 2014

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“There were 3,000 deaths during that crisis and we were the voice of hope.”
– Isaac Broune about the role of the United Methodist radio station during the
2010 civil war in Côte d’Ivoire.

Grab your cell phone in typhoon, flood, or war
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — When it floods, or a typhoon hits, or you are caught in the middle of a civil war, grab your cell phone. That was the bottom-line advice from three people who have been in the middle of all those situations. The speakers were part of a panel about communication as aid on the last day of a three-day Game Changers Summit that was all about technology that helps rebuild and restore communities after they have suffered devastating events.

Read story and post comment

Read full coverage of the Game Changers Summit

Groups to bishops: You must speak
LOS ANGELES (UMNS) — Two United Methodist groups — coming from different theological perspectives — are urging the Council of Bishops to take the lead and speak out on issues facing the church and wider world. The Western Methodist Justice Movement and Good News each released a statement this week encouraging bishops’ action.

Read story and post a comment

Wanted: Mentors for youth offenders
LAKELAND, Fla. — United Methodists and the African Methodist Episcopal Church are launching “No More Throw Away Kids,” an effort to find faith friends for the nearly 2,400 juveniles incarcerated in residential facilities in Florida by the end of 2015. The goal is to break the cycles that often lead to lifetimes spent behind bars, reports Susan Green for the Florida Conference Connection.

Read story

Commentary: Churches must step up after Ferguson
DALLAS (UMNS) — The shooting of Michael Brown and the tumultuous aftermath in Ferguson, Missouri, should be a national wake-up call on race relations, says the Rev. Michael Bowie, pastor of St. Luke Community United Methodist Church in Dallas. Bowie also believes churches can play a key role in "rebuilding bridges of hope" between law enforcement and men of color.

Read essay in The Dallas Morning News

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.

Deadline to register for six online courses from United Methodist Communications, Tuesday, Sept. 9 — United Methodist Communications will offer the following courses Sept. 10-Oct. 22.“Communicating Faith in the 21st Century,” “Connectional Giving,” “Moodle 100: Basic Training,” “Tools for Increasing Your Church’s Vitality,” “Web Ministry 100: What is Web Ministry?” and “Welcoming Ministry 100.” Costs vary. Connectional Giving is free. Details.

GO On Tour, Saturday, Sept. 13-Saturday, Nov.15 — A worship concert featuring Christian hip-hop artist Tedashii and speakers from next year’s national United Methodist youth event YOUTH 2015, will visit each of The United Methodist Church’s five U.S. jurisdictions this fall. Tickets are $15. Details of 10-city tour.

One Board Model Seminar, Sunday, Sept. 142 p.m. CT. The Rev. Bob Farr, director of congregational excellence for the Missouri Annual (regional) Conference, will lead training for churches to implement a one-board model at The Connection, 6701 Virginia Ave., St. Louis. Details on PDF.

Worship Design Studio Planning Retreat, Sunday-Wednesday, Sept. 14-17 — At Lake Junaluska Conference and Retreat Center, the Rev. Marcia McFee will guide participants through the entire liturgical year (starting with Advent) in order to map out worship themes and general plans for each season. Details.

Free webinar “Children and Sacrament” Monday, Sept. 15 10 a.m. CT, United Methodist Board of Discipleship staff will answer questions on involving children in sacraments. Details.

Catapult Conference, Monday-Wednesday, Sept. 15-17 — Conference on “launching leaders into kingdom mission” will be at Cornerstone Church, a United Methodist congregation, 2125 Hamilton Road, Auburn, Alabama. Details.

Hispanic/Latino/a Heritage Month, Monday, Sept. 15–Wednesday, Oct. 15 — The United Methodist Board of Discipleship shares worship resources.

Free webinar “Becoming a Praying Congregation” Tuesday, Sept. 16 6:30 p.m. CT, Event includes examples and ideas for the community, for small groups, for individuals and families to have a deeper connection with God. Details.

Webinar “In-Person Hybrid Learning in Congregational Faith Formation,” Thursday, Sept. 187-8 p.m. ET, The Rev. Kyle Matthew Oliver will lead a discussion on how digital tools can make faith formation more accessible to congregation, including a hybrid approach that combines small groups and online activities. $10. Details.

How to Reach New People workshop by Jim Griffith, Friday-Saturday, Sept. 19-20 — Union United Methodist Church, 3543 Watson Road, St. Louis, will host event for pastors and church leaders. $25 per person or $75 per team of five (teams are encouraged). Details on PDF.

World Week for Peace in Palestine Israel, Sunday-Saturday, Sept. 21-27 — Organized by the Palestine Israel Ecumenical Forum and sponsored by the World Council of Churches. Resources.

United Methodist Church of the Resurrection Leadership Institute, Wednesday-Friday, Sept. 24-26 — Church is in Leawood, Kansas. The keynote speaker is Len Sweet, United Methodist scholar and best-selling author. Details.

Rich Church / Poor Church: Keys to Effective Financial Ministry, Wednesday, Sept. 24 and again Tuesday, Oct. 14 — Both seminars will be from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. CT and feature United Methodist author and fundraiser, J. Clif Christopher. The Sept. 24 session will be Platte Woods United Methodist Church in Kansas City, Missouri, and the Oct. 14 session will be at Manchester United Methodist Church in St. Louis. $25. Details.

Workshop “Get Their Names,” Saturday, Sept. 279:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. ET at Woodbury United Methodist Church, 577 Woodbury Road, Woodbury, New York. The Rev. Bob Farr of the Missouri Annual (regional) Conference will lead the seminar on sharing the Christian faith without anxiety. $20 per person for United Methodists. Details.

Deadline to apply for two discernment events for Deaconesses and Home Missioner Ministry, Wednesday, Oct. 1 — Events are Friday-Sunday, Nov. 7-9, in St. Louis and Friday-Sunday, Nov. 21-23, in Tempe, Ariz. A discernment event is an opportunity to explore a sense of call to lay ministry with a group of fellow discerners. Details.

Spaghetti dinner, Unity Run/Walk and Indian Mission Homecoming Service, Friday-Sunday, Oct. 3-5 — Spaghetti dinner is at 5-7 p.m. ET Friday, Oct. 3, the Unity Run/Walk starts at 8:45 a.m. ET Saturday, Oct. 4, and the homecoming service is at 11 a.m. ET Sunday, Oct. 5. Both the dinner and run are at Nanticoke Indian Center, and the service is at Indian Mission United Methodist Church. Details.

World Communion Sunday, Oct. 5 — United Methodists observe World Communion Sunday by celebrating communion with other Christians around the world on this special Sunday. Churches are also encouraged to receive a special offering to support ethnic undergraduate and graduate students, which often enables first-generation students to attend college. To download the World Communion Sunday pastors and leaders kit .World Communion envelopes.

Early-bird registration deadline for Reach New Disciples Conference: “Taking Church to the Community,” Monday, Oct. 6 — Lewis Center for Church Leadership Conference is 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. ET Saturday, Nov. 1 at Wesley Theological Seminary, Washington. $40. Details.

Laity Sunday, Oct. 19 — The United Methodist Board of Discipleship has worship resources.

“Advocacy 201” Workshop on Advocacy, Tuesday-Thursday, Nov. 11-13 — Sponsored by Associates in Advocacy at the O’Hare Super 8 Motel, Elk Grove Village, Ill. The training is for anyone asked to be an advocate for a pastor or lay person facing complaints.  To learn more and register, email the Rev. Jerry Eckert at [email protected]/.

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