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Daily Digest: June 12, 2014

The fact that our young people are facing the brunt of such violence is not to be tolerated.” — Bishop Grant J. Hagiya of the Greater Northwest Episcopal Area, on a fatal shooting at a high school in Troutdale, Ore.

Bishop calls for prayer following shooting

DES MOINES, Wash. (UMNS) — Bishop Grant Hagiya has called again for prayer and action following the second school shooting in less than a week within the Greater Northwest Area he serves — this time in Troutdale, Ore. He asks United Methodists to work toward making communities and schools safe places to grow and learn.

Read call for prayer

United Methodists host ‘Theology and Disability’ event

DALLAS (UMNS) — The fifth Summer Institute on Theology and Disability, and the first to be hosted by United Methodists, will occur here June 16-20. Highland Park United Methodist Church and neighbor Perkins School of Theology, part of Southern Methodist University, are sponsors, as is the Bethesda Institute. Events will be at the church. Speakers include theologian Stanley Hauerwas of United Methodist-related Duke Divinity School and Perkins’ associate professor Jaime Clark-Soles.

Learn more

Sessions of merging conferences to be streamed online

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (UMNS) — The Rio Grande and Southwest Texas annual conferences are proceeding toward unification into the Rio Texas Conference with joint sessions that will be livestreamed starting at 3 p.m. CT Thursday, June 12. The official celebration and closure of the Rio Grande Conference also will be livestreamed at 7 p.m. CT Friday, June 13. The Rio Texas Conference officially will be one on Jan. 1, 2015.

To see Southwest Texas Conference livestreaming

To see Rio Grande Conference livestreaming 

Hunger-relief group offers VBS program

BIG ISLAND, Va. (UMNS) — The Society of St. Andrew, the national hunger-relief ministry, is offering a new vacation Bible school program. “Abundance Orchard” has an Old Testament focus but includes stories and photos of the Society of St. Andrew at work. The free package contains enough materials for five, three-hour sessions.

To learn more 

Father’s Day devotional resources available

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — Looking for ways to celebrate Dad’s big day? The United Methodist Board of Discipleship offers prayers and devotions to mark Father’s Day.

See resources 

Pastor interviewed about sentencing reform

MASSAPEQUA PARK, N.Y. (UMNS) — RT TV (an English-language Russian station) interviewed the Rev. Jeffry Wells of Community United Methodist Church in Massapequa Park about the “Smart Sentencing” legislation before the U.S. Congress. Wells was among more than 1,100 religious leaders who signed a letter supporting the bipartisan bill to reduce mandatory-minimum sentences for federal drug offenses.

Watch interview

To see the letter 

Tennessee church hands out 26 scholarships

PARIS, Tenn. (UMNS) — First United Methodist Church in Paris handed out 26 scholarships to graduating high school seniors and college students this spring. The Paris Post-Intelligencer has the story, including names of recipients. The church is in the Memphis Annual (regional) Conference.

Read story