Daily Digest - October 04, 2013

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"It's a necessary thing to talk about because this is an evolving part of our world." - The Rev. L. Edward Phillips, professor at Candler and facilitator of conversation on online communion.

Moratorium, study urged on online communion

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) - A group of 27 United Methodist leaders is urging the denomination's bishops to call a halt for now on the practice of Holy Communion online and do further study of online ministries.
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World Communion Sunday offering supports seminary students

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) - Six seminary students involved in a scholarship and mentoring program for racial-ethnic students who plan to be ordained as deacons or elders in The United Methodist Church are receiving their M.Div. degree this year. Funding for this program comes from local church offerings on World Communion Sunday, held this year on Oct. 6.
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A call for prayer and healing for Bishop Swanson

JACKSON, Miss. (UMNS) - Bishop James E. Swanson Sr., who leads the Mississippi Annual (regional) Conference, is asking for prayer following his recent diagnosis of prostate cancer. He is scheduled for surgery Nov. 12.
Watch his video announcement
Post to Bishop Swanson's Facebook page

Bishop laments government shutdown

WASHINGTON (UMNS) - Bishop Marcus Matthews of the Baltimore-Washington Annual (regional) Conference urges United Methodists to "call upon your elected officials to stand with integrity and oppose efforts by a few to threaten the common good." The bishop said that this is "not a time for finger-pointing or political one-upmanship. Rather, it is a season for strong and principled leadership based on the soundest principle of our democracy."
Read statement

Two years after Irene: Catskills slowly recovering

PRATTSVILLE, N.Y. (UMNS) - In the two years since flash floods spawned by Hurricane Irene ripped across the Catskills, the churches in hard-hit towns like Prattsville and Margaretville have played vital roles in the recovery of their communities. The Rev. Joanne S. Utley, editor of The Vision, reports.
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Breaking good

REDMOND, Wash. (UMNS) - After joining millions of people in watching the "Breaking Bad" finale, Patrick Scriven of the Pacific Northwest Annual (regional) Conference writes about how the church can help people "break good."
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Board of Higher Education and Ministry names research director

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) -Mark McCormack has accepted a position as director of research in the United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry's Division of Higher Education. He began work on Oct. 1.
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Board of Discipleship gets new laity leader

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) -Jodi L. Cataldo, director of leadership development for the Dakotas Annual (regional) Conference, will become the director of laity in leadership at the United Methodist Board of Discipleship on Dec. 1.
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Workshop set for pastor advocates

CHICAGO (UMNS) - Associates in Advocacy, which offers aid to troubled United Methodist pastors, including those who face official complaints, will offer training Nov. 12-14 for advocates of pastors and lay people. Speakers include the Rev. Scott Campbell, an experienced counsel to clergy under complaint; the Rev. Larry Pickens, former member of the Judicial Council; and Phil Amerson, president of Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary. The workshop is scheduled at the Super 8 Motel O'Hare.
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