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Daily Digest: January 16, 2014

“We thank you for the great gift and privilege of preaching and for your calling upon our lives and energy and wisdom that we have from you to fine tune our craft.” — The Rev. Alyce McKenzie, pastor-professor-coach.

Preaching professor turns ‘player coach'

DALLAS (UMNS) — In an unusual, possibly unprecedented, experiment, the Rev. Alyce McKenzie of Perkins School of Theology is serving as preacher-in-residence for a local congregation. McKenzie is providing coaching on preaching to the clergy at Christ United Methodist Church in nearby Plano and is preaching there herself once a month.
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Church and Society opposes new sanctions for Iran

WASHINGTON (UMNS) — The United Methodist Board of Church and Society is among more than 60 organizations that signed a letter to U.S. Senators urging them not to support new sanctions that could “critically endanger” possibility of a diplomatic resolution to the nuclear standoff with Iran.
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Religious hostilities reach six-year high

WASHINGTON (UMNS) — The share of countries with a high or very high level of social hostilities involving religion reached a six-year peak in 2012, according to a new study by the Pew Research Center. The sharpest increase was in the Middle East and North Africa, which still is feeling the effects of the 2010-11 political uprisings known as the Arab Spring.
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Church building gets new life as homeless agency

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — Church closings are sad, but Annette Spence, editor of The Call in the Holston Annual (regional) Conference, reports how church property in Knoxville will now serve homeless families.
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Latin American, Caribbean women leadership gathering

LIMA, Peru (UMNS) — The first Latin American and Caribbean Methodist women leadership conference will be January 22-25 in Lima. The theme of the event is “Afirmación de la Dignidad de las Mujeres en América Latina y El Caribe y el Rol de las Mujeres en la Iglesia” (Affirmation of the dignity of Latin America and Caribbean women and their role in the Church). The United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry is a co-sponsor.
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