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Church offers food for schoolchildren

Greater Second Baptist Church, 5615 Geyer Springs Road, is participating in the Department of Human Services' Arkansas Special Nutrition Program.

After-school snacks and meals will be provided free to all children at 3:30 and 4:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday during the 2018-19 school year in the the church's Greater Second Care Center, located in the George Webb Family Life Gymnasium. Contact (501) 319-7874 or (501) 569-9988.

-- Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

Methodists weigh sexuality doctrine

The Arkansas Conference of the United Methodist Church published a document on Monday to answer questions about the church's Special Session of the General Conference to be held in St. Louis on Feb. 23-26.

In 2016, the faith's General Conference -- a group of about 1,000 delegates who represent members of the church worldwide -- reached an impasse on the issue of homosexuality in the church and asked that its Council of Bishops "find a way forward in terms of human sexuality," according to Arkansas Bishop Gary Mueller in a video now published on the conference's website, arumc.org.

A 32-member group known as the Commission on a Way Forward was appointed to review how homosexuality is addressed in the Book of Discipline, which details the faith's doctrinal beliefs, and weigh options on reaching a resolution on an issue that has divided the denomination in recent years. The commission's potential solutions and recommendation will be reported at next year's special session.

"I don't know what's going to happen in St. Louis next Feb. 23-26," Mueller said. "Neither do you. But I know this: God is still God, and God is still at work making God's will just as real on earth as it is in heaven."

The document, "Important Questions Concerning the Way Forward and the Special Session of General Conference," is available through the Arkansas conference website or by visiting tinyurl.com/yaqhmau8.

-- Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

Suicide prevention goal of Soul Shop

More than 25 clergy and lay church leaders attended Soul Shop, a one-day training session focused on increasing awareness about suicide and starting dialogue about it in churches, at the Jacksonville Community Center on Tuesday.

The Arkansas Department of Health, the Arkansas chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and Interfaith Arkansas hosted the daylong event, which was led by Michelle Snyder, director of Soul Shop and co-author of Life, Death and Reinvention: The Gift of the Impossibly Messed-Up Life.

"There's a way in which [suicide] gets talked about as an individual choice, and I would say we can't deny that -- we can't deny that there's an individual element in people making a choice whether or not to take their own life," Snyder said during the training. "What's also true is that there are community decisions involved as to whether or not a person ends up killing themselves. There are ways in which communities can be protective against suicide, and ways that communities can put people at risk."

Among the goals of the training are that of creating "soul-safe communities" in which people feel comfortable talking about feelings of isolation, emptiness and other factors that can contribute to suicide, Snyder said.

According to Christopher Epperson, a co-chair of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention's Arkansas chapter and a member of its national board, the training was a test run for five such events planned to be held in Arkansas next year.

For more information about Soul Shop, visit soulshopmovement.org; for more information about the Arkansas chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, visit afsp.org/chapter/afsp-arkansas.

-- Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

Moxie Matters stops at Robinson

Pulaski Heights United Methodist Church is set to host author Jen Hatmaker and singer Nichole Nordeman at a stop in Little Rock on their Moxie Matters Tour, at Robinson Center Performance Hall, 426 W. Markham St. in Little Rock, at 7 p.m. Monday.

Hatmaker is the author of The New York Times best-sellers Of Mess and Moxie and For the Love; Nordeman has won nine Dove Awards including female vocalist of the year and songwriter of the year.

According to a news release, the pair will share stories that will offer "hope for people who are grappling with change and feel they may have lost their moxie."

Tickets are $34 or $49 for standard seating; and $99 for tickets that include a meet-and-greet and reserved seating at the front of the auditorium, and can be bought by visiting moxiematterstour.com.

-- Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

Religion on 10/06/2018

Print Headline: Methodists weigh sexuality doctrine Suicide prevention goal of Soul Shop Church offers food for schoolchildren Moxie Matters tour stops at Robinson

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