Daily Digest: May 21, 2013

"To my knowledge, ours is the only Christian community in the world where the faithful gather weekly to celebrate Communion while standing in two nations." - The Rev. John Fanestil, who regularly celebrates Communion at the U.S.-Mexico border.

Oklahoma Conference asks collaborative response

OKLAHOMA CITY (UMNS) -"I know you are seeing and hearing news reports about the devastation and want to assist. ... Do not self-deploy. Best practices in times of crises call for a collaborative response, so people who can help are directed to where that help and those skills are most needed and will be most effective," wrote the Rev. Richard Norman, disaster response coordinator for the Oklahoma Conference. The confirmed death toll was at 51 with hundreds injured after a second round of devastating storms hit the state Monday.
Here is what the Oklahoma Conference is asking people to do

Disaster response: How you can help

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) - As communities in Oklahhoma, Texas and other U.S. states reel from the devastation of tornadoes, remember that The United Methodist Church has a system in place for responding. Here are a few of the places to check for information and find out how you can be part of United Methodist relief efforts:
UMNS Facebook page
United Methodist Committee on Relief
Facebook pages or websites for individual conferences. Find a conference
Facebook pages or websites for individual churches. Find a church
Donate to UMCOR relief efforts
Remember to be prepared. Churches dealing with disasters

Saying farewell to United Methodist Reporter

DALLAS (UMNS) - United Methodists across the United States are sharing a sense of loss following the news that UMR Communications, publisher of the United Methodist Reporter, will shut its doors May 31. After years of financial struggles, the board of UMR Communications unanimously voted May 16 to shutter the Dallas-based nonprofit, ceasing a publication that has been covering Methodism since 1847.
Read story and post a comment

Learning about life on the U.S.-Mexico border

SAN DIEGO-TIJUANA (UMNS) - On May 7, the active bishops of The United Methodist Church went to the U.S. Mexico border to learn more about the people there and the issues they face. Two commentaries by United Methodist pastors - the Revs. John Fanestil and Saul Montiel - who work at the border each day tell us about that area.
Feeling God's presence on the border
Tijuana: Where the world's migrants wait

Hockey ministry scores big with youth

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (UMNS) - Ashley and Tyler Moreland's love of hockey and the Fort Wayne Komets, the area's minor league team, has grown into a passion for using the sport as a platform for ministry. As the idea for a hockey ministry emerged, Ashley and Tyler turned to their home church, St. Joseph United Methodist in Fort Wayne, for guidance.
Read story and post a comment

Aldersgate Day: Celebrating Wesley's experience

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) - May 24 is Aldersgate Day. This celebrates our founder John Wesley's life-changing experience at a meeting on Aldersgate Street, London, May 24, 1738. He wrote extensively of that experience in his journal for that day.
Read Wesley's words at Interpreter Online
What a Georgia church plans

United Methodist Day in Windy City

CHICAGO (UMNS) - Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel signed a declaration proclaiming May 18 as United Methodist Day acknowledging the United Methodist Church's longstanding contribution and commitment to the peace and well-being of Chicago.
Read proclamation

Reporter and Cokesbury: The Splintering of Methodism?

PORTLAND, Ore. (UMNS) - The Rev. Jeremy Smith, the minister of discipleship at First United Methodist Church in Portland, reflects in his blog, "Hacking Christianity," on the closing of the Cokesbury bookstores and UMR Communications. Smith writes that the "unintended but definite effect of these twin actions is that there's no longer an unofficial forum with authority in The United Methodist Church."
Read blog

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