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September 16, 2013

"I came to the Wesley Foundation because I was looking for a community of people that would love and accept me. I stayed because I found a family that was hilarious and fun and challenging in the best ways." - Claire Dodson, junior at University of Tennessee at Knoxville.

Latest news on United Methodists in Colorado floods

LONGMONT, Colo. (UMNS) - Flooding claimed lives, forced evacuations and left shattered communities, with United Methodist churches and parsonages among the damage as rainfall relentlessly pounded Colorado at the end of last week. Watch United Methodist News Service for developments and the church's response.
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Students find a place in campus ministry

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) - The Wesley Foundation at the University of Tennessee at Knoville has become a home away from home for many students. They are among the thousands who are finding a place at 520 United Methodist collegiate ministries.
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Alabama-West Florida volunteers to be locked up

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (UMNS) - Alabama-West Florida Annual (regional) Conference pastors and ministry leaders and the Alabama Rural Ministry are getting ready to be locked up in the 6th Annual No More Shacks Campaign. Lisa Pierce, director of the rural ministry, will live in a makeshift shack for up to eight days. Other ministry leaders will commit to 24 hours in two other adjoining shacks. The goal is to raise awareness about poverty housing, provide volunteer efforts and raise money for repair.
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Bishop Swanson: Men need new Christian identity

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) "Men are in search of a new Christian identity." That's what Mississippi Area Bishop James E. Swanson Sr. told the Commission on United Methodist Men, at the conclusion of their Sept. 6-7 meeting in Nashville. Swanson said that men are seeking to find genuine and passionate ways to express God's call upon their lives. Rich Peck of United Methodist Men reports.
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'Rock 'n' roll pastor' begins at Montana church

BIGFORK, Mt. (UMNS) - The Rev. Mark Thurman, the new pastor at Community United Methodist Church in Bigfork, loves rock 'n' roll, has a Beatles calendar on his wall and plays acoustic guitar. "It kind of chose me more than I chose it," Thurman told the Bigfork Eagle of his ministry.
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Wales says 'yes' to women bishops

LAMPETER, CEREDIGION, Wales (UMNS) - The Anglican Communion News Service is reporting that, within a year, women will be allowed to become bishops in the Church in Wales. The historic decision was made Sept. 12 during a meeting of the church's governing body.
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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 with others, email newsdesk@umcom.org and put Digest in the subject line.

Free webinar "Creative Thinking in Faith Formation: An Ancient/Future Approach," Tuesday, Sept. 17 - 6:30 p.m. CT, learning strategies for teaching adults using an exploration of Jesus' teaching methods, from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship. To register.

Free webinar "The Pastors Book Club: The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do In Life and Business," Wednesday, Sept. 18 - 10 a.m. CT, a summary of the book and time to engage in small group discussions with people across the country. To register.

Free webinar "Building a Health Ministry in your Congregation," Thursday, Sept. 19 - 6:30 p.m. CT, UMCOR Health, Parish Nurses and the Center for Health provide resources. Learn what one congregation has done. To register.

"Historians Against Slavery" conference, Thursday-Saturday, Sept. 19-21 - Adrian College students will join in a conference on fighting human trafficking at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in Cincinnati. Details.

Author of "The Shack" preaches, Sunday, Sept. 22 - 8:30 and 10:50 a.m. CT, William Paul Young will be the guest speaker at worship services at Dyersburg First United Methodist Church in Dyersburg, Tenn. Details.

"Deborah's Daughters: Women's Ways of Leadership and Ministry," Monday-Wednesday, Sept. 23-25 - A conference in Dayton, Ohio, co-sponsored by United Theological Seminary and Harriet L. Miller Women's Center and the Center for Urban Ministry. Details.

Free webinar "Church Council: Incorporating Younger, Diverse Leaders," Tuesday, Sept. 24 - 6:30 p.m. CT, Healthy vital congregations bring together leaders who have different generational values and work styles. To register.

United Methodist Church of the Resurrection Leadership Institute, Wednesday-Friday, Sept. 25-27 - Event aimed at helping leaders renew churches. Details.

Free webinar "Guiding Children in a Violent World," Thursday, Sept. 26 - 10 a.m. CT, Looking at ways to guide children at different stages of life in varying circumstances, from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship. To register.

Free webinar "Principles of Vitality for District Superintendents," Thursday, Sept. 26 - 1 p.m. CT, Tools a D.S. can use to equip clergy for vital leadership, from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship. To register.

Free webinar "Lord, Teach Us to Pray: Ancient Practices Aid Modern Prayers," Thursday, Sept. 26 - 7 p.m. CT, Discussion of how walking labyrinths and using prayer beads can be meaningful to Christians today, presented by Interpreter magazine and The Upper Room. To register.

Magic City Miracle, Sunday, Sept. 29 - Noon to 4:30 p.m. CT, 200 service projects in Birmingham, Ala., sponsored by United Methodist churches and United Methodist Communications' Rethink Church. Volunteers welcome. Details.

Sojourning Women, Bold Voices Then + Now, Friday-Saturday, Oct. 4-5 - Conference honoring 25th anniversary of Scarritt-Bennett Center in Nashville, Tenn. Details.

Hands4Detroit, Saturday, Oct. 5 - 8:30 a.m.-3:45 p.m. ET, Effort to drive out hunger sponsored by area United Methodist churches and United Methodist Communications' Rethink Church. Volunteers welcome. Details.

World Communion Sunday, Oct. 6 - Worship resources from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship, and stewardship resources from United Methodist Communications for giving to scholarships.

Early-bird registration for Reach New Disciples Conference, Monday, Oct. 7 - 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. ET, Nov. 2, Wesley Theological Seminary's Lewis Center for Church Leadership, Washington. Details.

Explore United, Tuesday, Oct. 15 - 9 a.m. ET, United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio, will have an open house for prospective students. Details.

Downtown Church Network, Wednesday-Friday, Oct. 16-18 - First United Methodist Church Peoria, Ill., annual gathering for pastors and staff of United Methodist churches in cities with at least 100,000 people. Details.

Wesleyan Leadership Conference, Thursday-Saturday, Oct. 17-19 - Fourth annual conference, with a focus on evangelism, at the United Methodist Board of Discipleship in Nashville. Open to all lay and clergy leaders. To register.

Creative Worship Workshop, Saturday, Oct. 19 - 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. ET, Life Enrichment Center, Fruitland Park, Fla., for preachers, artists, musicians and worship planners, sponsored by the Fellowship of United Methodists in Music and Worship Arts, Florida Chapter, and Mary Scifres Ministries. Details.

"Catechesis: Why United Methodists Must Recover Their Doctrinal Heritage," Saturday, Oct. 26 - 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET, William J. Abraham and David F. Watson will speak about the collapse of doctrine in The United Methodist Church at United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio. Evangelical Fellowship of West Ohio is a sponsor. Details.

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