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Daily Digest: April 23, 2014

“I believe in my heart that faith in Jesus Christ can and will lead us beyond an exclusive concern for the well-being of other human beings to the broader concern for the well-being of the birds in our backyards, the fish in our rivers, and every living creature on the face of the earth.” – John Wesley, as quoted in The Green Bible.

UMTV: Earth Day every day at church
NASHVILLLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — United Methodists have launched ministries across the United States that set an example of creation care. “God gave us a great gift. We should do our best to take care of it,” says a member of the Church of St. Paul and St. Andrew, a historic United Methodist congregation in New York City.

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Sexuality issues on docket for Judicial Council this week
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (UMNS) — A marriage equality resolution and a request for a decision regarding benefit coverage for same-gender spouses of United Methodist general agency employees are among the issues to be considered when the Judicial Council — the denomination’s top court — meets this week in Little Rock.

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Connectional Table to discuss human sexuality
CHICAGO (UMNS) — Members of the Connectional Table will meet April 27-April 29 for the semi-annual meeting of the 59-member body, which is responsible for guiding the vision, missions and ministries of The United Methodist Church. From 9 to 11:15 a.m. CT Tuesday, April 29, the group will stream online a conversation on human sexuality, the denomination’s mission and United Methodist church law. The event will begin with Bible study led by San Antonio Area Bishop James Dorff, followed by a panel of United Methodist leaders and theologians. The panel includes retired Bishop Daniel Arichea Jr., Mark Teasdale of Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary and Pamela Lightsey of Boston University School of Theology.

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With mentors, first-generation college students defy statistics
ATLANTA (UMNS) — Across the United States, high school seniors are now receiving acceptance letters, tallying up their financial aid packages and choosing where they will go to college in the fall. United Methodist-related colleges make higher education more accessible to students who are the first in their families to pursue a four-year-degree.

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Preparing for World Malaria Day
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — United Methodist Communications offers a video in advance of World Malaria Day on Friday, April 25, that outlines how United Methodists can draw attention to this deadly disease and post prayers for the people affected.

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Husband and wife married 70 years die 15 hours apart
NASHPORT, Ohio (UMNS) — When Helen Felumlee passed away at the age of 92 Saturday morning, her family knew her husband Kenneth Felumlee, 91, wouldn't be slow to follow her. USA Today shares the story of the couple who were members of Nashport-Irville United Methodist Church.

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Blessing of the tractors
LELAND, Ill. (UMNS) — After a long, harsh winter, farmers in DeKalb County are ready to get out in their fields with a blessing. The Rev. Jodeen Immer of Suydam United Methodist Church is there to help. The Northern Illinois Annual (regional) Conference shares a photo and brief description of this ministry idea.

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Wesley Theological Seminary joins Tony Blair effort
WASHINGTON (UMNS) — The Tony Blair Faith Foundation’s Faith and Globalization Initiative has welcomed United Methodist-related Wesley Theological Seminary as a new partner in its teaching network. With this, Wesley is joining 20 leading research universities from across the world in the foundation’s Faith and Globalization Initiative.  Wesley is the only seminary to be added as a partner. 

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The gospel according to ‘Downton Abbey’
CLEVELAND, Miss. (UMNS) — The Rev. Darian Duckworth, a United Methodist pastor in the Mississippi Annual (regional) Conference, reflects on what the PBS series about an aristocratic British family and its servants tells us about the importance and limits of tradition.

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