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Daily Digest - March 25, 2015

"To have a university that is only 23 years old that has all of its buildings paid for and no debt is a university with great opportunities ahead." — Bishop Marcus Matthews, leader of the Baltimore-Washington Conference at the Africa University board meeting.

Africa University, new leader deal with challenges

MUTARE, Zimbabwe (UMNS) — As Africa University celebrated the installation of its new vice chancellor, the 23-year-old United Methodist-related university’s board struggled with growing pains. The board of directors at its March 20 meeting discussed aging buildings, overcrowded dorms and the need for more professors with doctorates to retain Zimbabwean accreditation of programs. Vicki Brown reports from Mutare.
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Assuming role of ‘creation care’ as God’s mandate

DECATUR, Ga. (UMNS) — Glenn Memorial and other United Methodist congregations are engaging in sustainability practices that they hope will impact communities around the world. The denomination’s annual creation care conference, "Environmental Resurrection: Let Justice Roll Down Like Waters," meets in the Atlanta area April 24-25 at Decatur First United Methodist Church. Linda Bloom has the story.
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United Methodists annually honor slain civil rights worker

SELMA, Ala. (UMNS) — Viola Liuzzo, a Detroit housewife and civil rights activist killed March 25, 1965, after the Selma-to-Montgomery marches, was not United Methodist, but she’s been embraced by several in the denomination. Her marker on Highway 80 in Lowndes County, near Selma, is a stop for many United Methodists and for civil rights heritage tours. Joey Butler tells the story.
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50 years later, Selma native still part of the movement

BEL AIRE, Md. (UMNS) — Phillip Hunter knows a lot about the 1960s civil rights movement in Selma, Alabama. He should know. He was born and raised there. The United Methodist has a certificate testifying to his participation in Bloody Sunday, signed by the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. Erik Alsgaard of the Baltimore-Washington Conference profiles Hunter.
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UMCOR plans transition for mission in Georgia

NEW YORK (UMNS) — The United Methodist Committee on Relief’s field mission in the Republic of Georgia is closing after more than two decades, but a new local organization will take its place. David Tereshchuk reports for UMCOR.
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Ministry idea: Operation Love Your Neighbor

CAPE CORAL, Fla. (UMNS) — Members of Cape Coral First United Methodist Church, one of the biggest churches in town, cooked, sewed, washed cars and did whatever other service they could to show their love of God and neighbor. The Cape Coral Daily Breeze reported on the weekend of service, which the church called Operation Love Your Neighbor.
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Higher education and ministry board called on to adapt

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — “The church is asking us to be different and do different things than it has in the past, and we are adapting to these changing needs,” says the top executive of the United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry. Tom Gillem offers an overview of the agency’s recent board meeting and its accomplishments.
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Lent Quiz: Where does it say the Messiah rode a donkey into Jerusalem?

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — Many images that depict Jesus riding into Jerusalem before his trial and execution show Jesus riding upon a donkey. Does Scripture actually say he rode such a steed?
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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.

Thursday, April 2
Deadline to submit Culture of Call Award nominations — The Foundation for Evangelism gives the award annually to one local United Methodist congregation that encourages the next generation of leaders with a passion for evangelism to enter fulltime Christian service. Details.

Sunday, April 5
Easter — Worship resources from United Methodist Discipleship Ministries and Cokesbury.com.

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