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Daily Digest - March 2, 2015

 

"We need to renew commitments to Beijing." — Tatiana Dwyer, UMW executive, said of a landmark document on women’s rights that emerged from a U.N. conference in China.

Assessing key women’s conference, 20 years later

NEW YORK (UMNS) — Twenty years ago, a landmark document on women’s rights emerged from a U.N. conference in China. In March, United Methodists will be among those assessing the progress of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action during the 59th session of the U.N. Commission on the Status of Women.
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An update on imprisoned United Methodist in Congo

DES MOINES, Iowa (UMNS) — "My brother has turned something very, very dark into something beautiful," the Rev. Kiboko Kiboko told the Rev. Arthur McClanahan, director of communications for the Iowa Conference. His brother, Vano Kiboko, has been imprisoned in the Democratic Republic of the Congo since Dec. 29, for speaking out for human rights. McClanahan shares an interview and update.
Listen to interview
Background on Vano Kiboko’s imprisonment

$1 million in theological education grants awarded in central conferences

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — Seventy-three grants totaling $1 million were awarded for theological education in 22 countries in Africa, Asia and Europe. The money will be used for training local pastors, faculty development, e-readers, curriculum, development of libraries, and more. The United Methodist Board of Higher Education’s Nicole Burdakin reports.
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Free weddings show church’s love

ELKHART, Ind. (UMNS) — Trinity United Methodist Church offered free weddings on Valentine’s Day for couples who wanted to celebrate in style but couldn’t afford a big wedding. “We remind them that we want their wedding to be a day to remember. But the most important thing for us as a church is their marriage,” says the Rev. Mark Dicken, senior pastor.
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5 things churches should stop for Lent

SAVANNAH, Ga. (UMNS) — Lent is the time of year where we look at our lives and do the hard work of being honest about things that might be keeping us from growing deeper in our relationship with God. The Rev. Ben Gosden, pastor of Aldersgate United Methodist Church in Savannah, Georgia, suggests things churches should give up for Lent that would help people in their discipleship.
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Cal-Pac churches tend to migrant children

CLAREMONT, Calif. (UMNS) — Churches in the California-Pacific Conference are helping some of the more than 6,000 migrant children who have come into the Los Angeles area recently through the “You are Not Alone” program supported by the United Methodist Committee on Relief. Susan Kim reports for UMCOR.
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Virginia Wesleyan names new president

NORFOLK, Va. (UMNS) — The board of United Methodist-related Virginia Wesleyan College has selected Scott D. Miller to be the college’s fourth president. The college’s current president, William T. "Billy" Greer, will retire in June. Miller has been the president at Bethany College in West Virginia for eight years.
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Lent Quiz: What do some United Methodists not sing at Lent?

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — Music is a huge part of worship in the United Methodist tradition, yet during Lent some congregations stop singing something.
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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 7
"Doing Good Well” conference — 9:30 a.m.-1 p.m. EST, Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington. Vital congregations are increasingly committed to serving others through mission. “Doing Good Well,” this year’s Serve Your Neighbor conference, explores the fruitfulness of mission efforts and provides practical strategies to make sure your mission hits the mark. Details.