Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Clowning Around

L - R: Back Row: Delee Rehak, (clowning director), Justin Durden, Caitlin Wallen, Carl Hersom, Marquita Foster, (clown clothes designer, Samuel Compagno, Kyle Abarham, Megan Sutliff, Kristin Huie, Will Laaker, Tom Rehak, (clowning director). Front row: Mary Beth Jones, Brian Kenny, Ashley Dohany
There is lots of clowning around at Christ Our Shepherd Lutheran Church! The high school youth have a wonderful clowning ministry that the congregation gets to enjoy about every six weeks during church services. Their ministry has also broadened to the preschool program.
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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Saddleback Pastor Continues the Message of Renewal Found in The Purpose Driven Life with National '40 Days of Love' Campaign

/PRNewswire/ -- Following in the footsteps of the popular "40 Days of Purpose" campaign that thousands of churches participated in worldwide, Saddleback Church is launching a national "40 Days of Love" campaign. The campaign, which launches across the country February 1st, is based on the book The Relationship Principles of Jesus (Zondervan, 2008) by Tom Holladay, teaching pastor at Saddleback.

Focused on relational renewal, the book, begins where Rick Warren's best-selling The Purpose Driven Life (Zondervan 2002), which focuses on personal renewal, ended. More than 1,000 churches across the country are signed up to participate.

"With conflict, divorce, violence, prejudice, abuse, division, and polarization around us daily, it's obvious we all need some lessons in building healthy relationships," says Rick Warren, senior pastor at Saddleback. "This is my dream: If every group and church that participated in '40 Days of Purpose' worldwide would also study The Relationship Principles of Jesus as a part of '40 Days of Love,' it could bring about a revival of love that would change the cultural climate of our world," adds Warren.

Beginning in February, churches nationwide will take part in the "40 Days of Love" campaign which walks participants through the book's 40-day study guide that teaches six key principals to loving people based on the words and actions of Jesus. Built into each day's reading is a reflection on one of the principles, the scripture it is built on, real life examples, and practical suggestions to implement Christ's example into relationships. This 40-day journey is designed to bring new health and richness to participants' marriages, families, friendships, and all the relationships in their lives, producing deeper connections and renewing rocky relationships.

The six relationship principles explored in the book include:

-- Place the highest value on relationships
-- Love as Jesus Loves you
-- Communicate from the heart
-- As you judge, you will be judged
-- The greatest are the servants
-- Treat others as you want them to treat you

Holladay writes, "God wants us to depend on him for the power to love. So he challenges us to love in a way we can only accomplish through dependence on his power." Holladay bases these principles on an extensive study of what Jesus lived and taught about relationships and actions towards others, a study which was filled with challenging and surprising truths for life.

Information on the 40 Days of Love campaign can be found here:

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Tuesday, January 13, 2009

National Black Church Studies Summit Hosted by Emory

Community leaders, clergy, scholars and students will gather at Emory University Jan. 22-24 for the 5th Annual National Black Church Studies Summit hosted by Candler School of Theology. The event will include plenary sessions, panel discussions, workshop presentations and public events focusing on the future of the black church and the theme "Where Do We Go From Here? Black Church Traditions, Textures and Transformations."

"This period in America's history marks an important juncture for black churches and faith systems," says Teresa Fry Brown, associate professor at Emory's Candler School of Theology and an organizer of the summit. "While the past two years have marked the fruition of long-awaited social change, it has also been a time of misrepresentation, misinterpretation and misguided discussions about the black church. Now is a pivotal time for black church leaders to gather to discuss the traditions, textures and continual transformations of the black church."

The summit will feature presentations and dialogue about the varieties of black religious experience, the 21st century black church, and the continuing social, political and spiritual impact of people of faith on the church, the academy and society.

Speakers include:

Walter Earl Fluker, executive director of the Leadership Center at Morehouse College, Coca-Cola Professor of Leadership Studies and interim director of the Morehouse College Martin Luther King Jr. Collection; and
Katie G. Cannon, Annie Scales Rogers Professor of Christian Ethics at Union Theological Seminary & Presbyterian School of Christian Education in Richmond, Va., a leading Christian ethicist and the first African American woman ordained in the United Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).
Sponsored by Candler and co-sponsored by Emory's Graduate Division of Religion and the Kelly Miller Smith Institute at Vanderbilt Divinity School, the summit will be held at the Emory Conference Center Hotel, 1615 Clifton Rd., Atlanta, GA 30322.

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Saturday, January 10, 2009

JAARS Receives First Kodiak Aircraft, Improving Access to "Bibleless" Peoples

(BUSINESS WIRE)--A new solution to support Bible translation for people lacking scriptures was turned over to David Reeves, president of JAARS Inc., in Sandpoint, Idaho yesterday. JAARS is the first mission or humanitarian organization to purchase and receive the specialty Kodiak aircraft, securing serial number 008.

JAARS was established in 1948 by Wycliffe Bible Translators co-founder William Cameron Townsend to provide aviation and technology services to support Bible translation. However, the phasing out of aviation grade gasoline (avgas), and an aging fleet of JAARS aircraft, primarily comprised of piston-driven engines, is now affecting Bible translators’ ability to carry out their work. According to Reeves, the new Kodiak aircraft reaffirms the JAARS organization’s aviation leadership and continued focus on service.

“With 2,000 translation programs currently underway worldwide and almost 2,400 languages still needing Bible translations to be started, we looked into the future of aviation for a safe, effective solution to our passengers’ unique transportation requirements,” said Reeves. “The Kodiak is well- poised to meet the challenging needs of the translation community in remote operations.”

The Kodiak, developed by the Quest Aircraft Company of Sandpoint Idaho, is a ten seat aircraft with a turboprop engine capable of short take-offs and landings that uses readily available jet fuel and can carry a 3,100 pound load.

Very few regions of the world have a greater need for safe, reliable, air transportation than the vast island nation of Papua New Guinea north of Australia where Kodiak serial number 008 is headed. This Kodiak will provide access to many of the people who live in Papua New Guinea’s rugged mountains and remote coastal areas.

Wycliffe translators and national coworkers are working in partnership on 190 different language projects in Papua New Guinea. They have completed more than 160 New Bible translation projects, but at least 340 more languages have no Scriptures.

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