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Daily Digest - July 17, 2015

"I grew up in a town like Maycomb, among people just like Atticus, and I can tell you that no better picture has been painted of the evil of genteel, educated, polite Southern racism circa 1955 than 'Go Set a Watchman.'" - Retired United Methodist Bishop Will Willimon, in a review of the just-published novel by Harper Lee.

A Methodist reading of 'Go Set a Watchman'

DURHAM, N.C. (UMNS) — Retired United Methodist Bishop Will Willimon offers a review of Harper Lee's "Go Set a Watchman," with attention to its Methodist references. Willimon, himself a novelist, finds that "Go Set a Watchman" confirms the "artistic genius" Lee showed with "To Kill a Mockingbird" and offers an accurate, unflinching portrayal of small-town Southern racism in the 1950s.
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United Methodist Church joining global ‘public library’

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — United Methodist Communications, the communications agency of The United Methodist Church, has joined an effort being dubbed “Humanity’s Public Library.” It’s the first faith-based organization participating in the innovative initiative.
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UMCOR assists migrants arriving in Sicily

NEW YORK (UMNS) — The United Methodist Committee on Relief, working with a local volunteer group, is using a novel voucher program to meet the emergency needs of migrants arriving in Sicily, Italy. David Tereshchuk reports for UMCOR.
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Church leaders raise awareness about violence in Côte d’Ivoire

ABIDJAN, Côte d’Ivoire (UMNS) — Leaders from African churches and civil society organizations engaged in discussions at a July 7-9 World Council of Churches workshop on issues related to sexuality, gender-based violence and HIV/AIDS.
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United Methodist paddling for clean water

MEDFORD, N.J. (UMNS) — Margo Pellegrino, a member of Medford United Methodist Church, is paddling 2,000 miles in her canoe to bring attention to the need to take care of waterways. “This is the fresh water ocean,” she says of her trip from New York City to Chicago. Jeff Wolfe, communicator in the Greater New Jersey Conference, reports.
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Cokesbury offering Christmas in July sale

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS)—It’s Christmas in July time at Cokesbury. If you’re already making your list, check out the sales.
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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.

Monday-Thursday, July 20-23
The United Methodist Church's Eighth Historical Convocation The meeting will be at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary in Evanston, Illinois. This is a joint meeting of the United Methodist Commission on Archives and History, The Historical Society of the United Methodist Church, the North Central Jurisdiction Commission on Archives and History and the Commission on Archives and History of the Northern Illinois Conference. The theme is "Diversity:  It's Complicated." United Methodism has always been diverse and has had a complicated relationship with that diversity. The event includes an awards banquet that recognizes contributions to historical research on the church. The Historical Society of The United Methodist Church also will inaugurate its new president, Priscilla Pope Levison. Details

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