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Daily Digest — September 14, 2015

 

"People are hungry for the grace of God. They need a word from God and to know God is for them." – The Rev. Phil Chamberlin of Grace Church in Palestine, Texas.

Project helps 6 Haiti schools go solar

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) – Six schools in Thomas, Haiti, have solar power plants, computers and water purifiers, thanks to a five-year effort by volunteer-in-mission teams led by Warren McGuffin and supported by the United Methodist California-Nevada Conference. United Methodist Communications’ ICT4D Church Initiatives commissioned research on the Thomas Food Project to measure its impact. Kathy Gilbert reports.
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A message of grace leads to church growth

PALESTINE, Texas (Charisma) – Grace Church, a United Methodist congregation in rural East Texas, has managed in the past four years to grow at a rate of 48 percent. The church has outgrown its building and now shares space in a formerly defunct country club and golf course. The church’s message: “God allows Mulligans.” Steve Strang, founding editor and publisher of Charisma, featured the congregation’s story of grace and growth in his national magazine.
Read Charisma story
Read Texas Conference story on the church

Welcoming the stranger in Europe

NEW YORK (UMNS) – Welcoming the stranger can be tough and risky, but also offer the potential for new insights and understanding, writes Thomas Kemper, top executive, United Methodist Board of Global Ministries, in a statement about the current refugee crisis in Europe. The statement was sent to the denomination’s Council of Bishops.
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Meharry students combine research with health policy

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) – A new video, “The Next Generation of Care,” highlights the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Center for Health Policy at Meharry Medical College, one of the 11 historically black colleges and universities supported by the Black College Fund of The United Methodist Church. The video, sponsored by the Black College Fund, shows how the program brings together healthcare and health policy to improve medical treatment. Tyrus Sturgis reports for the United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry.
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Church van stolen, but kids' program goes on

DALLAS – Walnut Hill United Methodist Church here was counting on using its van to help transport kids for an after-school program. But the van was stolen recently. Christ's Foundry United Methodist nearby is lending a van until Walnut Hill's can be found or replaced. Fox4News.com reports.
See video

Homebuilding program gives family hope

ATLANTIC CITY (UMNS) – Damita Daniel had been trying to find a way to get her house repaired after it was severely damaged in Superstorm Sandy in 2012. Then, she learned she was losing her 30-year job as a casino worker. Help from A Future With Hope, the nonprofit recovery program of the Greater New Jersey Conference, came at just the right time. Jeff Wolfe reports for the conference.
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Be a part of worship at General Conference

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) – The worship design team for General Conference 2016 is seeking volunteers to write liturgy, including prayers, calls to worship and litanies.
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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.

Wednesdays, Sept. 16, Sept. 23, Sept. 30 and Oct. 7

"Technology and Christian Values" webinar series from Drew Theological School — 2-3:30 p.m. EDT. Living as Christians in a digital world calls people to rethink faith values and practices with new optics. This series offers a new perspective on how to assess digital technology use, development and expansion through a lens of Christian values. A .5 CEU credit is available. $20 per session. Details

Thursday, Sept. 17

Deadline to register for "Small Wonders," gathering for small churches — Gathering will be Friday-Saturday, Oct. 2-3, First United Methodist Church, 604 West Avenue in Holdredge, Nebraska. The Rev. Dottie Escobedo-Frank, author and district superintendent, will be the keynote speaker at this event for congregations with 100 or fewer in worship. Details

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