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Daily Digest — August 25, 2015

“Stories will change your heart. And that’s how we change the world. We have to change our own hearts first.” – Dave Knapp, member of Ginghamsburg Church, on relationships between volunteers and homeowners after Hurricane Katrina.



Volunteers put lives, homes back together

SLIDELL, La. (UMNS) – Since Hurricane Katrina smashed into Louisiana in 2005, the Epworth Project at Northshore Disaster Recovery Inc. has assisted 7,631 clients and hosted more than 56,000 volunteers who have repaired 2,447 homes. Kathy L. Gilbert and Mike DuBose revisited Slidell and met volunteers and homeowners who are still picking up the pieces. Second in a series.
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From Katrina to Detroit: New collaborations

DETROIT (UMNS) – Relationships strengthened and expanded through the Katrina recovery process have created a new normal for local disaster response.  Linda Bloom takes a look at how United Methodists in Michigan are helping Detroit homeowners recover from the 2014 floodwaters using lessons learned and connections made during Katrina. Third in a series.
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Katrina brought terror – and caring

NEW YORK (UMNS) – The stories of “neighbors helping neighbors” in the aftermath of Katrina are so numerous it’s impossible to document them all. It is worth noting that the huge response to Katrina is essentially a mosaic of the single, small kind acts of one person, one church, one organization — multiplied in countless ways, said Cathy Earl, executive secretary for U.S. Disaster Response, United Methodist Committee on Relief. Susan Kim has the story on UMCOR’s response.
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Tomorrow: A new church and recovery in the 7th and 9th wards.

Fallen firefighter was United Methodist

WENATCHEE, Wash. – One of three firefighters who died battling a 30-acre blaze was a United Methodist. Richard “Rick” Wheeler, 31, had moved to Wenatchee with his wife about a year ago, and both were members of First United Methodist Church, said the Rev. Joanne Coleman Campbell, pastor of the church. Rick Steigmeyer reported the story for The Wenatchee World newspaper.
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Covenant Discipleship: Tranforming lives

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) – Christians grow as disciples through sharing their successes and struggles with small groups of trusted friends. Joe Iovino reports on Covenant Discipleship, a small group ministry offered by United Methodist Discipleship Ministries. Third in a four-part series.
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Bishop Swanson: ‘Something good is going on’

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) – “Something good is going on with UM Men,” Bishop James Swanson, president of the Commission on United Methodist Men, told the 20-member governing board of the Nashville-based agency. “We have to find––and we don’t have to look far––to see what God has done in our lives, and we need to tell those stories,” he said. Rich Peck reports for United Methodist Men.
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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.

Tuesday, Sept. 1
Early-bird deadline for Lake Junaluska Peace Conference  Thursday-Sunday, Nov. 12-15 at Lake Junaluska Conference and Retreat Center in North Carolina. This year’s conference, “Longing for Peace/Exploring the Heart of God,” will feature three keynote speakers and focus on the spiritual roots and foundations that support the search for peace in the three Abrahamic faith traditions: Judaism, Islam and Christianity. Space is limited and early registration is recommended. Registration is $120 before Sept. 1 and $145 after Sept. 1. Students may attend for $60. Details

Thursday, Sept. 3
Free webinar "What does Wesleyan Small-Group Ministry Look Like?" — 1 p.m. EDT. United Methodist Discipleship Ministries discusses how to bring some of John Wesley's key ideas into today's ministry. Details

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