Saturday, September 27, 2014


Good afternoon from Krum, Texas.  It's a lovely day in North Texas and everywhere that we choose to see in that way..... This is the usual type of handout. I hope you can use it----and I look forward to seeing you at the Conference Celebration two weeks from today!

October 11 is our annual conference gathering and celebration at St. Luke Community UMC at 4710 E. R.L. Thornton Parkway in Dallas. The theme for the day is “Colors of Christ—Learning, Loving and Living God’s Word.” Keynote speaker will be the Rev. Sarah Squires, executive director of Wesley-Rankin Community Center. We hope to pack 1000 birthing kits for UMCOR! Join us! If you need transportation, contact your Unit president.
October 11—8:30 am to 3 pm

The agencies serving in South Texas for the refugees seeking safety continue to need our prayers and support.  Donations may still be sent to the following:

SWTX Conference UMW, noted "Texas Border Crisis,” 16400 Huebner Road, San Antonio TX 78248

McAllen District UMW, noted "Immigrant Relief,"
1909 W. Harrison, Harlingen TX 78550

Holding Institute UMW, noted “to be used in Laredo,” 1220 McClelland, Laredo TX 78040

Good Neighbor Settlement House, to the House at 1254 Tyler Street, Brownsville, 78520.

The Ebola crisis continues and worsens. United Methodist Communications is in the forefront of the mass communication effort that is essential.
“In the Ebola crisis, communication precedes prevention and treatment,” said the Rev. Larry Hollon, chief executive of United Methodist Communications. “The contagion cannot be contained without clear communication about the reality of the Ebola virus, sanitation, isolation of sick people, and proper handling of the deceased. This has to be communicated effectively and widely. In these circumstances, a clear message saves lives.”
Additionally, United Methodist Communications is sending text messages to church leaders in Liberia to keep them informed and encouraged in this time of crisis. African communicators are being equipped and trained to take over this communication in the near future.
The majority of the telecommunications market in Liberia is wireless, with 69% relying on mobile phones. That number is 67% in Sierra Leone, making text messages a crucial way to distribute prayers for encouragement and life-saving messages.
The first text message was sent August 19 on behalf of Bishop John Innis  of Liberia to his district superintendents:  Ebola is real. It kills with little warning. Please adhere to health messages to safeguard your family. Let us be in prayer. God is with us.
“Prayers of Encouragement,” an Upper Room publication, will be made available to World Reader users in a variety of formats, including tablets, smartphones and biNu, billed as “Your Smartphone in the Cloud.” This is technology that United Methodist Communications has tested and used previously and is well-received in developing nations. Additionally, the agency will send words of encouragement from this booklet via text.
To support this outreach, give to Advance #982450, Disaster Response, International.
Recent months have seen torrential rain and widespread flooding throughout the countries of South Asia. UMCOR, also through gifts to Advance #982450, is responding with emergency assistance through its partners on the ground in Bangladesh, Pakistan and India-controlled Kashmir.
Back in the U.S. wildfires rage in central and northern California, consuming or threatening homes and other vital structures. UMCOR is in communication with the California-Pacific Annual Conference to assess needs. To help UMCOR’s U.S. Disaster Response, donate to Advance #901670.
October Observances

     Domestic Violence Awareness Month
     Breast Cancer Awareness Month

     World Food Day, October 16
     National Observance of Children’s Sabbaths,
                October 18-19
     United Nations Day, October 24


Friday, September 19, 2014


October is a busy month for special observances.

On the medical front, we will focus on Breast Cancer Awareness.

It is remarkably timely that we will highlight Domestic Violence, an ongoing scourge in this country.

World Food Day will bring our attention to the millions of children who are always hungry. (Materials are available from Church World Service.)

And United Nations Day will ask us to celebrate this largest union of the world's nations.

Be thinking of materials you can distribute.


This piece continues material about immigration. It also includes a specific request for the Good Neighbor Settlement House in Brownsville, Texas.

As usual, the text can be reformatted for a half, vertical page, back to back. For my documents, I use Calibri font, size 12.

Immigration Those who say, “I love God,” and hate their brothers or sisters, are liars; for those who do not love a brother or sister whom they have seen, cannot love God whom they have not seen. The commandment we have from him is this: those who love God must love their brothers and sisters also. 1 John 4:20-21
 Of the people living in the United States today, 35.7 million were born elsewhere. Twelve million live without documents. Of the total, 1.6 million are children, half of whom live below the poverty line. This movement of people can be seen in every continent of the world. Global migration was estimated at 191 million in 2006. Global migration has increased dramatically in recent years due to economic policies like free trade that have eliminated jobs and pushed farmers from their land in poor nations of Africa, Asia and Latin America and pulled them into the more prosperous nations of North America, Europe and Asia. Competition for resources and displacement due to climate change in poor nations has also contributed to these patterns. In the United States, communities are being transformed. Many U.S. citizens express fears related to race, jobs and security, which has led to an anti-immigrant backlash and migrants—especially women migrants and their children—being endangered by the rash of state anti-immigrant legislation. The use of local police for immigration enforcement, growing criminalization of immigrants who have committed no crime and rising detentions and deportations have all contributed to family separation.
Our Vision We affirm a world in which God’s vision of beloved community, a world in which nationalities and borders do not divide us as the people who God loves. We affirm the human rights of every person regardless of status and affirm that these rights do not stop at borders.
 United Methodist Church Policy “To refuse to welcome migrants to this country—and to stand by in silence while families are separated, individual freedoms are ignored, and the migrant community in the United States is demonized by members of Congress and the media—is complicity to sin” (Resolution 3281, “Welcoming the Migrant to the U.S.,” The Book of Resolutions of The United Methodist Church 2012). “Ways must be found to share more equitably the resources of the world” (¶163E United Methodist Social Principles). “The current global economic system reflects an expectation that many people will live in poverty, or have their nations torn by conflict, so that others may live in abundance. That many people will resist poverty and war through migration is an ancient and modern fact of human existence … The United Methodist Church commits to engage in strong, coordinated advocacy on migration issues and on behalf of actions that overcome poverty, war and other causes leading to the displacement and marginalization of people” (Resolution 6028, “Global Migration and the Quest for Justice,” The Book of Resolutions).
Cindy Johnson, immigration counselor for UMW, Inc., and interim executive secretary for Christian social action, recently gave us this report about the refugees seeking safety in South Texas.
The involved bishops from both Texas and Mexico and a bishop from Honduras have recently visited in Brownsville. They agree that a top priority is to protect the immigrants—particularly youthful ones—from human predators. So they need advocates for children, to help keep them safe.
Personal needs for the immigrants include sports bras (since these garments come in small/medium/ large) and underwear.
The greatest need in Brownsville at the moment is financial support for the Good Neighbor Settlement House, which is a national mission institution of UMW. Gifts can be made through your UMW Unit. Or you may send a check made payable to Good Neighbor Settlement House, to the House at 1254 Tyler Street, Brownsville, 78520.
Cindy issued an enthusiastic invitation to United Methodist Women to visit and see for ourselves the work that is being done at Good Settlement.

Saturday, September 6, 2014


As is now the custom, September 21 is the International Day of Peace. The theme this year is "The Right of Peoples to Peace."

The following week will be observed across many faiths as the World Week for Peace in Palestine Israel. This theme is directly from the Bible:  "Let my people go."

The blog this week is a handout that can be used immediately and for the weeks until the observances. Copy the text, format it for two columns on a vertical 8-1/2x11 page, and print back-to-back.

All around us, our world is crying out for justice, freedom—peace. Here, in North America, in Central America, in South America, as in Syria, Iraq, Sudan, Mozambique, the Philippines and in Palestine Israel.

In the current issue of New World Outlook, UMC journalists give us graphic illustrations of the pain and suffering we cause when we treat the stranger among us as “the other.”

Nowhere is the contradiction of human rights versus human behavior more evident than in Palestine Israel. The Old Testament of our Bible is full from beginning to end of the human tragedy caused by injustice, slavery, and fear. And yet, even today, in that same country described from Genesis to Malachi, for more than 40 years, Palestinians have been virtually imprisoned and grossly mistreated; their property has been confiscated; their homes destroyed and families separated by the very people who received God’s mercy over and over…as do we.

September 21 is International Day of Peace, for which the theme is “The Right of Peoples to Peace.” Following that observance, United Methodists and people of all faiths are asked to “join together for a week of advocacy and action in support of an end to the illegal occupation of Palestine and a just peace for all in Palestine and Israel.” This theme is Biblical: “Let my people go.”

Did you know---
--Israel is the largest recipient of U.S. foreign aid. Between 2009 and 2018, Israel is scheduled to receive $30 billion in military aid?
--129 Israeli children were killed by Palestinians between October 2000 and May 2012?
--1,334 Palestinian children were killed by Israeli security forces during that same time?
--According to international law, it is illegal for a country to acquire territory through force? Occupation is a temporary status: Annexation, confiscation of resources population transfer, and

destruction of personal property are all illegal under the Geneva Conventions.
--the path of the Wall does not follow the established Green Line border between Israel and the West Bank. It juts up to 13 miles into Palestinian territory, demolishing ancient olive groves, destroying the livelihood of Palestinian farmers, and completely isolating some villages from the rest of the West Bank.

The worldwide web is full of references and documents about the situation, from the creation of the State of Israel 66 years ago. Forty-seven of those years, the Israeli government—after having received a place to call their own—have occupied the area to be held by Palestinians.

Search the web for yourself. Places to start include…
·         Children of the Nakba
·         Defining the Barrier—A Washington Post Multimedia section on the Wall
·         One Family Fund: Video Gallery
(Click on “Galleries”  “Video Gallery”)
·         Testimonies from B’Tselem, The Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories
·         UNICEF: Voices of Children in the Occupied Territories  (photoessays and Frontline diaries)

Will you join in this observance and pray with people of all faiths all over the world “for a just peace settlement and reconciliation, a peace in which there will be no more political prisoners behind bars and where harmony will prevail in the hearts of all the peoples of this region.”