Tuesday, November 24, 2015


This is a handout for these four topics. Copy, reformat for narrow margins, two columns, and print back-to-back.




So much tragedy has happened in our world in the last two/three months. Gun violence continues to take lives; earthquakes, floods, tornadoes and hurricanes and wild fires have swept across the globe; and now terrorists have wreaked havoc in Paris, France, with threats going out everywhere. United Methodist Women serve in all these situations through our prayers and our gifts.


On Monday, November 8, I joined a nationwide telephone conference organized by Bill Mefford of GBCS. We heard Bishop Hoshibata from the Desert Southwest Conference tell how he has led his churches to address gun violence. Forty-nine of the Bishop’s 120+ churches have come together in strong affirmation of a three-session Bible study about the use of guns in committing violence. The study, “Kingdom Dreams, Violent Realities,” uses Micah 4:1-4 as its scriptural foundation.


The Bishop noted that the call to action should be to address general gun violence, not a specific issue. An example of what not to try to address would be gun-free zones. The point must be how to curb overall gun violence.


We heard also about the study regarding handgun purchasing (see www.taleoftwostates, which I have mentioned before) and the Gun Violence Prevention Sabbath to take place between December 10-14, in many UMC churches.


UMCOR needs help to provide winter kits for survivors of the earthquake in Pakistan. As always, to support international relief efforts you can contribute online to Advance #982450, International Disaster Response.


UMCOR’s mission statement reads: “Compelled by Christ to be a voice of conscience on behalf of the people called Methodist, UMCOR works globally to alleviate human suffering and advance hope and healing.” Our gifts enable this ministry.


I encourage you to read UMCOR’s November newsletter which addresses “natural disasters” and GBGM’s General Secretary, Thomas Kemper’s article on Grief, Dismay and Prayers for Peace in Wake of Paris Attacks. Another article tells how Austria, Vienna, has arranged to house some of the many refugees from Syria. Go to umcmission.org/Learn and review the list of articles.



“Activate Love. Transform the World. Change Lives.” This is the theme of UMC #Giving Tuesday which is December 1. This is the day when all gifts to UMC Advance projects are matched by GBGM. There are dozens—probably hundreds—of projects that you can support, including the one listed above. Go online to GBGM Advance or to UMC Mission

 and select the projects of your choice. You may also donate by phone to 1-800-554-8583.


And in our Thanksgiving prayers, let us join in Thomas Kemper’s prayer:


“God of mercy and justice, in the face of horrific violence in Paris, Beirut and war-torn cities around the world... For those whose lives are forever disrupted and changed by the violence in Paris and Beirut... For those who serve the injured, minister to the families of those killed and have the responsibility of determining responses to the attacks... For the people of France that they may find a sense of security and peace without closing their hearts and borders to Middle East refugees... For the refugees that they may find safety and welcome and not be turned away anywhere out of fear and distrust... For the perpetrators that their hearts may be transformed; that they disavow violence and become peacemakers reliant on you... For champions of peace that they will not succumb to fear but will remain devoted to peace through justice and compassion... and For strong United Methodist witness as instruments of justice and peace wherever there is violence, suffering, hatred, and fear... We ask all these petitions in the name of Christ, author of peace and maker of justice.”


And let all the people say “Amen.”









Social Action Nov. 2015



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