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UMNS Weekly Digest - July 7, 2017


Top viewed stories from June 30-July 6. See all United Methodist News Service stories at

Claremont, Willamette explore partnership

CLAREMONT, Calif. (UMNS) — Claremont, one of 13 United Methodist theological schools, could move to the campus of United Methodist-related Willamette University in Salem, Oregon. Claremont is facing financial challenges and the move would reduce overhead, said the Rev. Kah-Jin Jeffrey Kuan, president of Claremont. Kathy L. Gilbert has the story. 
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Responding to global climate issues

NEW YORK (UMNS) — When Jefferson B. Knight attended the Paris climate summit at the end of 2015, he already knew that climate change was not a theory for debate but a present-day crisis in Liberia and other parts of Africa. But he and other United Methodists are concerned that the U.S. withdrawal from the Paris climate accord undermines global goals to address those issues. Linda Bloom reports.
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Commentary: Desert encroachment in Nigeria 

Hardin led 3 United Methodist-related colleges

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (UMNS) — Few if any United Methodist educators could match the legacy of Paul Hardin III. The son of a Methodist bishop, Hardin was president of three United Methodist-related schools: Wofford College, Southern Methodist University and Drew University. He capped off his career as chancellor at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. Hardin died July 1, at age 86. Sam Hodges reports.
Read feature obituary 

Church in Nigeria leads in rural health care

JALINGO, Nigeria (UMNS) — The United Methodist Church in Nigeria’s rural health care program, which includes a mobile clinic, is saving lives in remote areas that aren’t reached by government health programs. The Rev. Ande I. Emmanuel reports.
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UMCOR aids in helps in Boko Haram attack recovery

ATLANTA — The United Methodist Committee on Relief is collaborating with Mission 21, formerly the Basel Mission, to help Nigerian communities recover from attacks by the militant Islamic group Boko Haram. A $100,000 UMCOR grant is providing 600 people essential nutrition and non-food assistance.
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Cleanup of burned church complete

LAS VEGAS — The first phase of cleanup at Zion United Methodist Church, a 100-year-old church gutted by fire last month, is complete. The Desert Southwest Conference reports that the conference may be involved in a future building project.
Read update 
Read bishop's letter
Read Las Vegas Review-Journal story  

Gift to support dean's position at Candler

ATLANTA — A gift from the estate of Mary Lee Hardin Willard, of Gadsden, Alabama, has created a permanently funded endowment for Candler School of Theology, a United Methodist seminary. The gift will support the position of dean of Candler.  
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Registration open for Exploration

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Registration is open for Exploration, a three-day event to help young adults ages 18-26 listen and respond to God’s call to ordained ministry in The United Methodist Church. 
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Heritage center offers new grant

MADISON, N.J. — The African American Methodist Heritage Center offers a new grant to local United Methodist African-American congregations using innovative ways to recover, preserve and/or present their histories; or to individuals doing historical research or projects on African-Americans in Methodism. The grant, totaling $5,000, will be available every other year. Proposals are due July 31.
Read press release 
Learn about the African American Methodist Heritage Center 

Clinical pastoral education center developed

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry announced the development of a new center for clinical pastoral education to meet the growing need for pastoral education resources within the denomination.
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Commentary: Preparing for the shift

WASHINGTON — The Rev. Doug Powe, incoming Lewis Center for Church Leadership director, says that demographic shifts will bring increased diversity to the neighborhoods around most churches in the coming decades. Rather than simply ignoring changes, churches can prepare for this shift, he writes.
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Wespath to launch 2 new funds

GLENVIEW, Ill. — Wespath Benefits and Investments will launch two new fixed income funds for institutional investors: the Social Values Choice Bond Fund and the U.S. Treasury Inflation Protection Fund. The two funds will become available to institutional investors July 1.
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British Methodists look at their identity

BIRMINGHAM, England — The annual British Methodist Conference, which met June 22-29, reaffirmed the importance of being an interdependent and diverse church, reflecting on the fundamental importance of “connectionalism” to Methodist identity. 
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Methodists, Anglicans propose new relationship   

34 young clergy grants awarded

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry has announced 34 recipients of the 2017 Young Clergy Initiative grants. The goal of the Young Clergy Initiative is to increase the number of young clergy in the denomination.
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2 Wesley Pilgrimages offered in 2018

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — United Methodist clergy and laity will have an additional opportunity to join the Wesley Pilgrimage in England during 2018. For the first time, Discipleship Ministries will offer two pilgrimages in one year. 
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Here are some of the activities ahead for United Methodists across the connection. If you have a United Methodist event to share, you can add it to the calendar with this submission form.

Thursday, July 13

Super early-bird deadline for Leadership Institute 2017 —The United Methodist Church of the Resurrection in Leawood, Kansas, will offer the institute Sept. 27-29. Details

Monday, July 24-Monday, Aug. 14

Online course "The Changing 21st Century Sunday School" — Today, many churches struggle with whether to go to a one-room Sunday school or how to reach biblically illiterate children who only attend every few weeks. This course, offered by the United Methodist and the ecumenical Practical Resources for Churches, explores ways to handle the challenges of today’s Sunday schools. Debbie Kolacki, a United Methodist certified lay servant and Christian educator, will lead. The course is eligible for one CEU. Cost is $45. Details

See more United Methodist events