The Call: December 18, 2020

The Call: December 18, 2020

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Baby, it's you

In the season when we celebrate the infant who came to save our world, we appreciate the small church making a big difference for babies in low-income families.
 
The pandemic isn't making it more difficult for a working single mom on a limited income, according to one parent who came for help on Dec. 12. “It’s already hard. These are just hard times." From The Call. Read story.
 
 
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Ring the church bells on Christmas Day

Bishop Dindy Taylor invites all Holston Conference churches to ring their bells at noon on Dec. 25. "What a wonderful way we can remind our neighbors God is still alive and his righteousness will prevail." From Holston Communications. Read letter.
 
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Ring the dormant bell

The bishop asked churches to ring their bells on Christmas Day. This missionary hopes Christians will also share the love of Jesus Christ "in word and action" throughout the year. From The Call. Read story.
 
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Publishing House among pandemic victims

The United Methodist Publishing House has seen its sales dive in the COVID-19 pandemic, as churches unable to meet in person cut back on orders. The agency is laying off employees and putting its headquarters up for sale. From UM News. Read story.
 
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Sign language lessons for the holidays

The Rev. Leo Yates is taking time this Christmas season to teach common holiday terms in American Sign Language to help Deaf people be included in the festivities. From the Baltimore-Washington Conference. Read story.
 


Black United Methodists want changes

Black United Methodists are pushing for change in the denomination -- changes they believe are both long overdue and overshadowed by the debate about LGBTQ people in the church. From UM News. Read story.
 
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Girl Scouts make reusable bags

Girl Scouts in Oak Ridge launched a project aimed at reducing how many plastic bags people use. The troop donated 150 reusable bags, made from T-shirts, to First United Methodist Church in Oak Ridge for their Thanksgiving meal distribution. From WBIR. See story.
 
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Coping with holiday blues

If you or someone you love is struggling with the holiday blues, you are not alone. While these tips may not make one jolly, they can help us celebrate and worship more fully through this holy season. From United Methodist Communications. Read article.


  Photo of the Week  
 

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"Need a coat and loaf of bread? Stop by our portable hand-washing station and pick one up."
 
Shades of Grace United Methodist Church, serving a predominantly homeless congregation in Kingsport, Tennessee, posts a dose of reality and grace on its Facebook page in December 2020.
 

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The Call is Holston Conference's weekly newsletter for 853 United Methodist congregations in East Tennessee, Southwest Virginia, and North Georgia. Contact Annette Spence, editor, at thecall@holston.org.
 
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