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Daily Digest: August 11, 2014

“Our hope is in Jesus Christ, in knowing he is a healer and will bring Ebola under control.”
– The Rev. George Wilson, United Methodist communicator with the Liberia Annual (regional) Conference.

Church responds to international emergency of Ebola
MONROVIA, Liberia (UMNS) – With the Ebola outbreak in West Africa declared an international health emergency, United Methodist church leaders in Liberia are educating people about prevention, diagnosis and treatment of the disease. Above all they are reminding Liberians that Jesus Christ is a healer.

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United Methodist mission leaders express solidarity
NEW YORK (UMNS) — Top executives at the United Methodist Board of Global Ministries on Friday expressed solidarity with Christians and other religious and ethnic minorities in Iraq as they are driven from their homes, some herded into isolated encampments where they face death by starvation and thirst.

Read the statement


Border crisis: Resources for a faithful response
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — Threats of kidnapping and death by criminal gangs, combined with poverty, have led to thousands of unaccompanied minors fleeing to the United States from Central America. The United Methodist Church is responding in ways few organizations can.

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Jousting pastor learns about ministry from his ‘knight job’
ARRINGTON, Tenn. (UMNS) – When the Rev. Gene Martino Jr., became friends with Roy Cox, owner of an authentic jousting company, he had not spent much time on a horse: “I think I got on it in the proper direction.” Within a short time, this United Methodist pastor was competing in his new “knight job” and learning quite a bit about ministering as well.

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Looking ahead
Here are some of the activities ahead for United Methodists across the connection. If you have an item to share, email newsdesk@umcom.org and put Digest in the subject line.

Launch of online support group helps pastors in recovery, Tuesday, Aug. 12 Noon to 1 p.m. ET, sponsored by the United Methodist Special Program on Substance Abuse and Related Violence. Details

Deadline to apply to participate in the Social Principles consultation in Maputo, Mozambique, Friday, Aug. 15 – Consultation organized by the United Methodist Board of Church and Society will be on Oct. 17-18. Others will follow in Nigeria, the Czech Republic and Washington, D.C. Details

Deadline to apply to join regional Healthy Families, Healthy Planet advocacy training, Friday, Aug. 15 – The free United Methodist training in advocating for women and girls will be Saturday, Sept. 6 with an optional session on Monday, Sept. 8, in Peoria, Illinois. Applications are required. Details and application

Deadline to register for Just Save One conference to equip HIV and AIDS Ministries, Friday, Aug. 15 – The gathering will be Thursday through Saturday, Sept. 11-13 at the Renaissance Hotel in Denver and sponsored by the United Methodist Global AIDS Fund. Details

World Vision president speaks, Sunday, Aug. 17 – Rich Stearns, president of the Christian charity World Vision, will preach based on his book “Unfinished” at 8:15 a.m., 9:30 a.m., 11 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. CT at Bethany United Methodist Church, 10010 Anderson Mill Road in Austin, Texas. Details

Online courses from BeADisciple.com in August and SeptemberAug. 18-Sept. 2: Come to the Table (study of United Methodist theology and practice of the sacrament of Holy Communion); Aug. 18-Sept. 2:  Come to the Waters (study of United Methodist theology and practice of the sacrament of Baptism); Aug. 18-Sept. 2: Biblical Storytelling I; Sept. 8-23: Life Together in the United Methodist Connection; Sept. 8-23: Living Our United Methodist Beliefs; Sept. 8-19: Becoming an Even Better Sunday School or Small Group Teacher; Sept. 15-26: Youth Ministry 101; Sept. 22-Oct. 3: Active Learning for Today's Children. Details

Free webinar “What Every Teacher Needs to Know,” Tuesday, Aug. 196:30 p.m. CT, The United Methodist Board of Discipleship offers tips for effective leadership in small groups and other classes. Details

Free webinar “The Importance of Preaching for Children,” Thursday, Aug. 21 10 a.m. CT, a United Methodist Board of Discipleship one-hour interactive webinar discussion on preaching to reach listeners of all ages and abilities. Details

Seven Levers Workshop: Missional Strategies for Conferences with Bishop Robert Schnase, Saturday, Aug. 23 – 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. CT at Collierville United Methodist Church, 454 W. Poplar Ave., Collier, Tennessee. $10. Details

Symposium on “Understanding Human Trafficking: From Awareness to Action,” Saturday, Aug. 23 – 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. ET, sponsored by Frankfort District United Methodist Men and United Methodist Women at Frankfort (Kentucky) First United Methodist Church, 211 E. Washington St. $16. Details

Deadline for early-bird discount on 2015 United Methodist Program Calendars, Sunday. Aug. 31 – Order before date and receive 10 percent discount. Use Promo Code CAL15EP

Game Changers Summit, Wednesday-Friday, Sept. 3-5 United Methodist Communications invites local churches to attend a conference at Gaylord Opryland Hotel in Nashville, Tennessee. The event will focus on how congregations can use technology to strengthen international development. Details

Deadline to register for online course “United Methodism 101,” Wednesday, Sept. 3 – United Methodist Communications will offer the course Sept. 3-Oct.15. $9.99. Details.

Early bird deadline for the United Methodist Church of the Resurrection Leadership Institute, Wednesday, Sept. 3–  Gathering is Wednesday-Friday, Sept. 24-26. The keynote speaker is Len Sweet, United Methodist scholar and best-selling author. Details

NOMADS annual meeting,  Sunday- Friday, Sept. 7-12 – NOMADS, which stands for Nomads On a Mission Active in Divine Service, provide volunteer labor for United Methodist organizations. Most travel by RV, They will meet in Branson, Missouri. Details