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Daily Digest - March 13, 2015

"In Cameroon, the wives of traditional leaders, when they speak to community women, they are respected." — Justine Kwachu Kumche, speaking at a United Methodist Women-sponsored panel discussion, part of the U.N. Commission on the Status of Women.

Defining women’s progress on the grassroots level

NEW YORK (UMNS) — In some ethnic cultures in Cameroon, a woman whose husband dies is isolated in a dark room for three days, with only other widows for company. Justine Kwachu Kumche and Women in Alternative Action had to find just the right way to intervene in what it viewed as a harmful cultural practice, she said during a U.N.-related panel discussion March 11 sponsored by United Methodist Women. Linda Bloom has the story.
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Faith helps power Côte d’Ivoire radio station

ABIDJAN Côte d’Ivoire (UMNS) — Daily devotionals fuel the United Methodist radio ministry, Voice of Hope. More than 1 million people tune in to hear topics ranging from religion to finance, offered in 18 languages. Kathy L. Gilbert and Mike DuBose report.
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Churches push faith and fitness

PLANO, Texas (UMNS) — Christ United Methodist Church in Plano was included in a recent CBS This Morning segment about churches that emphasize physical fitness by providing gyms onsite.
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Church tends to soles of local children

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (UMNS) — St. Paul’s United Methodist Church is in the business of saving soles as well as souls. With its shoe bank, eligible children can receive free sneakers every three months for those under 3 and then every six months until they’re 18. Chris Rosenblum of the Centre Daily Times reports on this beautiful feat.
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United Methodist Men honor firefighters

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — Conference presidents of United Methodist Men and conference prayer advocates took time out from their recent meetings to deliver copies of “Strength for Service to God and Community” devotionals to a Nashville fire station. Rich Peck of United Methodist Men has the story.
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Publishing Houses launches search for new CEO

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — The board of the United Methodist Publishing House has launched its search for a new chief executive officer. Neil Alexander, president and publisher, announced his plans to retire in July 2016. The board had decided previously to split Alexander’s position into two, a chief executive officer and publisher.
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Lent Quiz: Why do some churches hold Easter sunrise services?

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — Many churches start their Easter Sunday worship with a special service early in the morning. Why do we hold Easter sunrise services?
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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.

Saturday, March 14
"Truth to Power: Eradicating Racism" webcast — 1 to 4 p.m. CDT. Churches Uniting in Christ, which includes The United Methodist Church, will present a webcast focused on bringing together those disaffected throughout society with faith communities and leaders to create a new network; creating authentic relationships among churches, civic organizations and community activists; and dismantling systems of oppression and surviving systems of oppression. Christian Chapel Temple of Faith, a Christian Methodist Episcopal congregation in Dallas, will stream the event online. Details.

Sunday, March 15
One Great Hour of Sharing — Offerings from this Special Sunday support the administrative costs and relief work of the United Methodist Committee on Relief, the denomination's humanitarian response organization. This year marks the 75th anniversary of the agency now known as UMCOR. Resources for the day.

Special worship service that celebrates UMCOR's 75th anniversary — 10 a.m. EDT at Asbury United Methodist Church, 1213 Pacific Ave., Atlantic City, N.J. What is now the United Methodist Committee on Relief began 75 years ago in Atlantic City. To RSVP.

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