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Daily Digest — August 24, 2015

"If you don’t believe in resurrection, if you don’t believe in the empty tomb, come to New Orleans because it is proof of resurrection. It is a new New Orleans." — The Rev. Carol “Callie” Winn Crawford, pastor of Rayne United Methodist Church on the 10th anniversary of Katrina.

 

Mission reborn from Katrina’s destruction

NEW ORLEANS (UMNS) — One decade later, people in Louisiana and Mississippi are looking at Hurricane Katrina in their rear-view mirrors and giving thanks to hundreds of thousands of United Methodists who put their money, hearts and hands into healing the Gulf Coast region. Reporters Kathy L. Gilbert and Linda Bloom and photographer Mike DuBose look back over the 10 years since the hurricane. First in a series.
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Read full UMNS coverage of Katrina
 

Before and after Katrina

NEW ORLEANS (UMNS) — Photographer Mike DuBose takes a visual trip back in time to 2005 in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and compares the devastation then to the recovery that is still in progress.
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Disaster response, then and now

BATON ROUGE, La. (UMNS) — When it comes to disaster, Louisiana has had more than a few opportunities to hone its response efforts. Betty Backstrom, United Methodist Louisiana Conference communication director, reports on the work of the conference to bounce back from two hurricanes in 2005, two more in 2008 and an oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
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Agency wants leeway to fight gay teen suicide

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — The United Methodist Discipleship Ministries board is proposing General Conference legislation that would lift church funding restrictions related to homosexuality. The proposal’s main rationale is to enable Discipleship Ministries to provide resources aimed at preventing teen suicide, particularly among youth who feel marginalized by their sexual identity. Heather Hahn reports.
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Discipleship Ministries submits hymnal legislation
 

United Methodist Freedom Rider dies at 99

SANTA ROSA, Calif. — The Rev. George M. Houser, a United Methodist pastor and founder of the Civil Rights organization Congress of Racial Equality, died Aug. 19 at the age of 99. The New York Times has the obituary of the man believed to be the last living member of the inaugural Freedom Ride — the volatile, sometimes violent bus trip through the South by a racially mixed group in 1947.
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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.

Deadline to register for online course "United Methodism 101" from United Methodist Communications — Course offered Sept. 2 to Oct. 14 on the denomination's history, theology, governance, ministries and challenges. $9.99. Details

Early-bird deadline to register for "Great Expectations for Boomers and Beyond" Conference — Thursday-Saturday, Oct. 22-24 at First United Methodist Church in Winter Park, Florida. The gathering aims to equip church leaders to cultivate the spiritual gifts of older adults as disciples of Jesus Christ. Missy Buchanan, adult advocate and author, and Marc Middleton, founder of the Growing Bolder web-based media group, will be speakers. $100 by Sept. 1Details

You can see more educational opportunities and other upcoming events in the life of the church here.