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Daily Digest - December 4, 2015


“The Wesleyan response to the plague of mass killing in this country is to pray without ceasing and then to act. Our action must emerge from prayer.” — The Rev. Steve Manskar, United Methodist Discipleship Ministries.

A Wesleyan response to mass shootings

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. (UMNS) — As news spread of yet another mass shooting, politically charged debates broke out among Americans. The dispute: Should we be calling for prayer or action in response to rampant gun violence? Many United Methodists say we should do both, and they point to John Wesley as leading the way. Heather Hahn reports.
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Reflections on mass shootings by Art McClanahan

Bishop calls for independent police auditor

CHICAGO (UMNS) — Bishop Sally Dyck and other faith leaders rallied outside Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s office to demand more action to protect the public from abusive police officers. The Dec. 1 rally was a week after the city released a dash-cam video showing a police officer fatally shooting a 17-year-old 16 times. “The system is broken. It’s dysfunctional and cannot discipline itself,” the Chicago Area bishop said in calling for an independent police auditor.
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Mother of 5 gives wages to fight malaria

OTTAWA, Ohio (UMNS) — During Advent, Monica Kleman stocks shelves and unloads trucks all day at an Ohio department store. The extra cash would come in handy for household, school and other expenses for her family of seven — but she said God has another purpose for that money. With her family's blessing, Kleman donated all $650 of her first paycheck to the Imagine No Malaria campaign. Lisa Streight reports for the West Ohio Conference.
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British church calls for peace after Syria vote

LONDON (UMNS) — The president and vice president of the Methodist Church in Britain called for peace following the House of Commons vote authorizing military action in Syria. “Every death is tragic and we grieve for those who have been killed and those who will die as an escalation of military action as a result of the continuing conflict,” said the Rev. Steve Wild and Jill Barber. Before the vote, the Methodist Church issued a joint statement with three other partner churches to call for a reasoned response in Syria.
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Parents accept award honoring daughter’s aid work

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (UMNS) — The Desert Southwest Conference awarded its 2015 Francis Asbury Award posthumously to Kayla Mueller. Mueller died in ISIS captivity while working for humanitarian aid groups on the Turkey-Syria border. The United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry reports.
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Read UMNS coverage of Mueller’s death

Church conference behind bars

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (UMNS) — Church charge conferences typically take place in sanctuaries and fellowship halls, but the Rev. Tim Carpenter presided over one inside a prison. A charge conference is the key gathering of a congregation’s top leaders, led by a district superintendent. Lane Gardner Camp of the Memphis Conference reports on the first charge conference at Grace Place United Methodist Church, located inside a women’s prison.
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Read Interpreter magazine story on Grace Place

Working in Armenia’s ‘valley of honey’

SALLI, Armenia (UMNS) — High on a mountaintop in Armenia lies Meghradzor, known locally as “the valley of honey,” where The United Methodist Committee on Relief is engaged with residents of the village of Salli in critical agricultural development work. Nicholas Jaeger, who oversees UMCOR’s development work in Armenia, explains.
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‘Chuck’ needs a real pastor

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — The fictional Park Grove Community Church, of the “Chuck Knows Church” series “The Committee,” has lost its pastor and its way. It will soon close its doors unless it reinvents itself. Can your pastor help save Park Grove? The production staff and cast of the online series produced by United Methodist Discipleship Ministries is looking for a real pastor to make a cameo appearance on the final episode of the series.
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Quiz: Do you know Christmas hymns?

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — From a list of four Christmas hymns, can you pick the one written by Charles Wesley?
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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 and put Digest in the subject line.

Sundays, Dec. 13 and 20
Day1 features the Rev. Michael Brown, senior minister of Marble Collegiate Church in New York City. Brown, a North Carolina native who has served several United Methodist churches, is the featured preacher with host Peter Wallace. The nationally broadcast ecumenical radio program is also accessible online at

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