"If we had a little more evangelism in us, this is a remarkable opportunity to share the gospel through our pastoral care. The pulpit is now in the streets." - The Rev. Rich Lang, a United Methodist pastor pepper-sprayed at an Occupy Seattle protest.
Occupy 'astonishing opportunity for clergy'
SEATTLE (UMNS) - He saw it as an opportunity to be present as a pastor and a peacemaker and went to the Occupy Seattle protest appropriately garbed in his clerical robes, stole and cross. By the end of the day Nov. 15, the Rev. Rich Lang, along with an 84-year-old woman, was among the six people hit by police with pepper spray. He still sees the protests as an opportunity to share the gospel.
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Free meals nourish struggling students
LOS ANGELES (UMNS) - An off-campus café housed near UCLA provides free meals and snacks to students, no questions asked, NBC Los Angeles reports. Jeanne Roe Smith, a United Methodist campus minister at UCLA, helps run the café where the customers often are so financially stressed, they must choose between food and school expenses.
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Native American group's restructuring concerns
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) - The task force of the Native American Comprehensive Plan, part of the United Methodist Board of Discipleship, has issued a statement expressing concerns about the proposed consolidation of nine general agencies under a 15-member board. The Native American Comprehensive Plan supports existing and develops new United Methodist Native American congregations and ministries. While acknowledging the denomination needs change, the task force said it is "greatly concerned that the proposed restructuring will limit or eliminate the voice of Native Americans."
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Archives commission awards new scholarship
MADISON, N.J. (UMNS) - The United Methodist Commission on Archives and History has selected the first recipient for its new $10,000 Josephine Forman Scholarship. Nidya Gonzalez, a student at the University of Pittsburgh, received the award, which recognizes a person of color pursuing graduate work in archival studies. The commission also has awarded several other grants for 2011.
Foundation of Evangelism names chair
LAKE JUNALUSKA, N.C. (UMNS) - Mary Brooke Casad, executive secretary of The United Methodist Connectional Table, is the new chair of the Foundation for Evangelism board of trustees. The foundation is an affiliate of the denomination's Board of Discipleship. Roger Marshall of Tulsa, Okla., and the Rev. Allen Black of Hermitage, Tenn., also joined the board for the first time at its annual meeting in October.
United Methodist Men's new staff member
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) - Jim Boesch, one of the first people to be certified as a men's ministry specialist, has been named one of four deployed staff members of the Commission on United Methodist Men.