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Penn State student suffers burns from explosion in class

WGRC News - Thu, 10/16/2014 - 1:24pm

An explosion at the Agricultural and Biological Engineering Building on the Penn State campus yesterday sent a student to the hospital with second degree burns. According to the university, a student was doing a tissue culture when the blast occurred in an exhaust hood. An investigation is being conducted by Penn State’s department of environmental health and safety.

Categories: Local News

Penn State student injured from blast

WGRC News - Thu, 10/16/2014 - 1:23pm

An explosion at the Agricultural and Biological Engineering Building on the Penn State campus yesterday sent a student to the hospital with second degree burns. According to the university, a student was doing a tissue culture when the blast occurred in an exhaust hood. An investigation is being conducted by Penn State’s department of environmental health and safety.

Categories: Local News

30-Y-O Missionary Preaches to Thousands Hoping to Change Very Foundation of Countries

Christian Post - Church & Ministry - Thu, 10/16/2014 - 9:59am
A 30-year-old missionary thinks big when he does evangelism – so big that it can sometimes require 2,000 missionaries and tens of thousands of people hearing the Gospel at a time.
Categories: Christian Post

Letting Go of the Past

Christian Post - Living - Thu, 10/16/2014 - 9:54am
No sin is so great that God will not forgive. Certainly some sins wreak havoc on our life as the consequences are played out.
Categories: Christian Post

Josh McDowell and Son: Christian Parents Can Help Children Develop Their Own Convictions on Faith by Not Answering Questions

Christian Post - Church & Ministry - Thu, 10/16/2014 - 7:46am
For Christian parents to pass on their faith to their children, they should not answer their children's questions but respond with more questions to help their kids think through the issues themselves rather than rely upon their parents, famed Christian apologist Josh McDowell and his son, Sean McDowell, explained recently at the Southern Evangelical Seminary's 21st Annual National Conference on Christian Apologetics in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Categories: Christian Post

Mommy, when can we go home?

Mission Network News - Thu, 10/16/2014 - 5:00am
International (FH/MNN) -- The following is a reflection on life for child refugees. Do children have a childhood in a refugee camp? What does the word "home" even mean? Food for the Hungry reports: There is a longing inside each one of us to go home. Whether it is a child away at camp or visiting grandma, or an adult on vacation or away on business, or a young soldier off to serve at a distant post, our hearts long to return to home. While we all feel that tug on our heart strings, most people who read this have a reasonable hope of returning home, either at the end of the day, the end of the trip, or the end of the assignment.

(Photo courtesy of Food for the Hungry)

Worldwide, more than 3 million people are homeless at some time during any given year. The UN High Commission for Refugees reported in June 2014 that the number of people worldwide who will not get to go home at night has exceeded 50 million for the first time since World War II. Over 51.2 million people are refugees, people seeking asylum, or internally displaced persons (IDP). The conflict in Syria alone has created a situation where 9 million people have little hope of going home in the foreseeable future. In just five years, Syria has gone from being the country hosting the second-largest number of refugees to producing the second-largest number of them. Imagine, if you will, millions of children crying in their mothers’ arms at night, “Mommy, when can we go home?” But all those mothers can do is tenderly hold their children and ask the same question silently in their own hearts. Counting refugees only, Syria and Afghanistan have produced 5 million combined, with Iraq adding another 400,000. Keep in mind that the UN report was published prior to the rise of ISIS in Iraq. By now, the refugee count is well over 6 million. So, where have they gone? They have crossed borders into the neighboring Middle East countries, with hundreds of thousands escaping to camps in Iran, Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Yemen, Egypt, and other countries that are, themselves, ill-equipped to shelter, feed, and provide the basis necessities of life for so many. Like the 6.5 million IDPs, the 6 million refugees have escaped one desperate situation only to find themselves in another. We want to believe that people who have become refugees are safe. They are not. They may have escaped the scourge of the fighting, but now they face the test of surviving, often living in tents or other makeshift structures and having no source of providing for themselves. They must place themselves at the mercy of the countries that have taken them in, while millions of children cry, “Mommy, when can we go home?” And still, there is no answer. There is a huge gap between what the host countries can do for the burgeoning numbers of refugees and what those refugees need to survive. That’s why Food for the Hungry (FH) and many other NGOs and faith-based organizations exist. We can fill that void by reaching out in a Christ-like manner, showing compassion, and providing essentials the rest of the world takes for granted. By providing assistance like education for refugee children, we can give them a sense of structure in their lives and prevent the long-term crisis of another generation of uneducated adults. Perhaps, by doing what we do, we can help some of these refugee children feel enough sense of security to feel at home with their parents at night, instead of crying in their arms, asking, “Mommy, when can we go home?” Through their local NGO, FH is actively providing ongoing relief to refugee families in Syria and Lebanon. Would you consider praying for these families and for FH, and helping them to provide for their needs? Read Press Release. Advocate. Give.
Categories: Mission Network News

ISIS in Pakistan?

Mission Network News - Thu, 10/16/2014 - 5:00am

(Photo courtesy Voice of the Martyrs USA/Assyrian International News Agency)

(Pakistan) -- The influence of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is spreading. It has now reached Pakistan, as evidenced by a move by a half dozen leading figures of the Taliban there. Todd Nettleton, a spokesman for the Voice of the Martyrs USA explains, "They have said that they will come under the authority of the Caliph of the Muslims Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who is the leader of ISIS. So basically they have said, 'We see ISIS as the banner carrier for the Islamic World, for at least the Sunni Islamic world.'" ISIS declared the creation of an Islamic State in June. Their decision could impact Pakistan's borders where the leaders are based, because of their proximity to Afghanistan. "If they join hands with ISIS in Iraq and Syria, if they start working together on taking more territory, if they start working together on terrorist attacks around the world, that becomes a pretty scary scenario to think about," says Nettleton. A notable uptick in activity from like-minded groups in Somalia, Kenya, and Nigeria followed the ISIS sweep. "When you talk about Boko Haram or you talk about radical Muslims in the Philippines, they look at that and they say, 'Those guys succeeded, and that's what we're trying to do.' The natural process is then, 'How did they do it? How can we be like them? What better way than if we work together?'" It would be a logical step, based on similar goals and ideologies. Nettleton says, "Radical Muslims around the world look at what ISIS [has] done, they look at the fact that they're controlling territory, they're setting up government structures and really ruling the areas that they control." The Voice of the Martyrs comes alongside the persecuted Church in these areas. However, Nettleton acknowledges, "The challenge is even to be present in the areas that are controlled by groups like ISIS because they force the Christians to leave." He continues, "When you think about spreading the Gospel, the first question is: 'If all the Christians are gone, who's going to be there to spread the Gospel?' The other group of Christians that is affected by ISIS is Muslim converts. They don't have the opportunity to leave alive with the clothes on their back. They have the opportunity to come back to Islam or be killed."

Flag used by Islamic State in Iraq and al-Shabaab in Somalia.

And yet, the light hasn't gone out entirely. "We believe that there are some Muslim converts still in ISIS-controlled areas. I am certain that they are being very cautious, but that is really how the Gospel is going to have to be spread: by those who are boldly staying in spite of the risk." VOM is serving Iraqi Christians by providing them with daily necessities and assessing their future needs. Many of these believers fled with only the clothes on their backs. VOM is also serving those who choose to stay behind. One thing we can do is reinforce them with prayer. "Pray for encouragement, that they really will sense the Lord's presence, [that] they'll know the blessing of His presence...and His hand on them, and see Him at work through them." One other thought: Saul was one of the most zealous persecutors of the Church until God changed his heart. Then he became one of the most zealous followers of God's heart. Nettleton says, "We need to pray that God will raise up Pauls out of the Sauls of ISIS, that some of these who are now persecuting our brothers and sisters will come to faith in Christ."
Categories: Mission Network News

World Mission celebrates 20 years of ministry

Mission Network News - Thu, 10/16/2014 - 5:00am

(Photo credit Leo Reynolds via Flickr)

USA (MNN) -- Two decades of commitment is a big milestone, whether in marriage or ministry. In marriage, the occasion is celebrated with gifts of china, platinum, or emerald. World Mission is celebrating 20 years of global ministry with friends over dinner. "One of our national partners from the country of Myanmar, formerly Burma, will be joining us and sharing a testimony right from the field of how God is using The Treasure to bring Buddhists to know Jesus Christ," shares Executive Director Greg Kelley. Celebrating 20 years As World Mission celebrates their 20th anniversary, they're looking at the past with praise and to the future with hope. "This year, our 20th year in existence, we will be distributing the 100,000th Treasure, which is our solar-powered audio Bible," Kelley shares, adding the landmark Treasure will be distributed in northern Nigeria.

A man listens to The Treasure in Nigeria.
(Photo credit World Mission)

"That's really by design; it's symbolic to us because northern Nigeria has endured some of the harshest, most relentless persecution over the last three years because of the terrorist group Boko Haram." If you're close to West Michigan, you can meet World Mission staff and invest in the ministry's future at the 20-year celebration dinner on Monday, October 27. Better hurry to secure a spot, though; the RSVP deadline is tomorrow. You can RSVP by calling the World Mission office at 616-534-5689 or sending an e-mail to staff@worldmission.cc. "To distribute 100,000 [Treasures], we feel, is a great accomplishment, and we just thank the Lord for that," adds Kelley. World Mission's ministry isn't stopping at the 20-year mark, though. Looking ahead Since its founding in 1994, World Mission has been dedicated to bringing the Gospel to unreached people groups. While that mission has been accomplished in different ways over the years, the end result remains the same: introducing lost people to the hope of Jesus Christ.

The Treasure is designed to be used in a group listening setting.
(Photo credit World Mission)

Partnerships are a key component to World Mission's ministry, and one of their newest efforts involves joining hands with Bible League International. The Illinois-based group has asked World Mission to transfer their print New Testaments into audio. "Right now, World Mission is in the process of recording New Testaments so that we can get the Word of God out into areas where the Gospel's not been heard because of the number of illiterate people," Kelley explains. "They give us the printed translation, and World Mission then records it with an indigenous individual, and then we load them on the Treasures, and we distribute them." See how you can partner with World Mission here. Pray for this new partnership to bear much spiritual fruit among the world's unreached people groups. Pray also for many new supporters to come alongside World Mission in the coming year. More World Mission reports here.
Categories: Mission Network News

Iraq: taking action

Mission Network News - Thu, 10/16/2014 - 5:00am

A village in Iraq destroyed by ISIS.
(Image courtesy ANM)

Iraq (MNN) -- Do you ever feel completely helpless about what's going on in the Middle East? Well, that's why we bring you stories like this one. Advancing Native Missions says their partners in Iraq are helping people displaced by ISIS. But, with winter quickly approaching, they're in need of your help. As this recent article from the Wall Street Journal explains, families are on the move daily in Iraq. Islamic State advances have essentially divided Iraq and its displaced people into three regions: one controlled by the Kurds, one controlled by ISIS, and another held by Iraq's Shiite army. In some cases, such as the plight highlighted in the WSJ article, families are forced to cross newly-drawn borders to get daily essentials like food or medicine. At other times, as in the case of many Iraqi Christians, families are forced to flee their homes permanently. ANM recently shared an example on their blog:

(Photo credit ANM)

There was a knock, then Ammar’s wife opened the door to find a man and his son standing there. The man explained that they had escaped from Mosul and were looking for a place to stay. Ammar’s wife told him, “We are Christians.” Bursting into tears, the man responded, “I and my family love Christ.” The couple invited them in and prayed with them. Then the man left to get the rest of his family. For Ammar and his wife, strangers at the door had been revealed as family in Christ. For the family from Mosul, the Lord had provided shelter and hospitality in a time of desperate need. Christians throughout Iraq, like the couple mentioned in this story, are opening their homes to people displaced by ISIS. ANM's national partners are helping these believers put Christ's love into action by providing daily supplies for the refugees: things like shampoo, towels, diapers, first aid kits, and more.

(Photo credit ANM)

With northern Iraq's harsh winter quickly approaching, the need for more supplies is growing dire. ANM is collecting supplies for a container they hope to fill and send to their partners in Iraq by the end of October. Take action and share Christ's love with Iraqi refugees by helping ANM here. Most importantly, please continue to pray for the situation in Iraq and Syria. Pray that ISIS terrorists will somehow be contained. Pray that more supplies are gathered and sent to refugee families. More Middle East stories here.
Categories: Mission Network News

Serving Haiti is serving Christ

Mission Network News - Thu, 10/16/2014 - 5:00am

(Photo courtesy of For Haiti with Love)

Haiti (MNN) -- Hunger in Haiti is on the heart of many. This is evidenced by the amount of donations given to For Haiti with Love recently to address the many needs in Haiti. For Haiti with Love runs a burn clinic and a food program for residents in need. Recently they had the opportunity to buy burn supplies in bulk for an entire year, significantly reducing the overall cost but demanding a higher up-front cost.

For Haiti has the unique opportunity of
ministering to burn victims.
(Photo courtesy of For Haiti)

Eva DeHart of For Haiti says, "People have answered the plea for the money to actually pay for the burn cream. And the reason we needed so much is that we had the opportunity of getting the burn cream in bulk." People have been sending food and other supplies to For Haiti with Love as well. The challenge now is getting those supplies to location for distribution. "As with everything else that you [purchase], it has to be shipped across the United States and then by sea into Haiti," DeHart explains. Even the burn cream will cost $1000 to get to Haiti. And a full container of food can cost about $10,000. Altogether it is a big number, but the spiritual and physical impact is worth it. "Jesus was all about feeding the hungry. In all of His ministry settings...feeding the poor and the hungry was a very important part of the Lord's ministry," DeHart says, "When their tummies are growling, they can't hear you talking about God. But satisfy the physical hunger, and it opens the door to satisfying spiritual hunger." DeHart wants supporters of this ministry to remember that they're not only serving people in need in Haiti. "We want them to remember that when you're looking into the eyes of the poor, you're looking into the eyes of Jesus. They are partnering with us and they are literally feeding the hungry themselves. We're just the conduits that get the product to help deliver the message." Want to help? Get connected here. Pray for God to provide the means for these supplies to get to Haiti. Ask Him to provide places for discussion about the Gospel among the people of Haiti.
Categories: Mission Network News

Child sponsorships: promise of future

Mission Network News - Wed, 10/15/2014 - 5:00am
International (ORO) -- Editor's Note: In answering the question, "Do Child Sponsorships really work?" we thought we'd share a post by Orphan Outreach staffer Julie Cramer. She shares the impact of her sponsorship on a little girl and children like her.

(Photo courtesy Orphan Outreach)

I pray for Shraddha when I open the refrigerator for milk. I close the door to bins stocked full of fruits and vegetables, and again I see her picture tacked there with a magnet. I have more than enough, but at times I wonder if the $36 a month I contribute to her care through Orphan Outreach’s sponsorship program is really making a difference in her life. How could so little do so much? A group of economists and researchers gave me a compelling answer. In 2013, Bruce Wydick (University of San Francisco), Paul Glewwe (University of Minnesota), and Laine Rutledge (a student at the University of Washington) presented their findings on the impact of international child sponsorships. They studied the adult lives of children who had been sponsored in comparison to their siblings that were too old to have been sponsored. The study is the first of its kind to measure the long-term impact of such sponsorships--and critical considering they estimate 9 million children are sponsored globally each year, with contributions mirroring that of U.S. foreign aid to developing nations, exceeding $3 billion annually. The researchers gathered data from 10,144 adults over 2 years that had received sponsorships through Compassion International from 6 countries. At the time, only children 12 years of age or younger were eligible for the program. A few of the team’s findings in the Journal of Political Economy offered solid evidence to the value of such programs: • Child sponsorship raised a child’s education level by three years • The probability of formal employment increased from 55% to 72% • The probability of white collar employment increased from 19% to 31% • Teen marriage and childbearing decreased • Community and church leadership increased • Basic necessities such as sturdier homes, clean drinking water, and use of mosquito nets were more likely • Positive lifestyle choices increased “You could beat this data senseless, and it was incapable of showing anything other than extremely large and statistically significant impacts on educational outcomes for sponsored children,” Bruce Wydick told Christianity Today. “The key to ending poverty resides in the capacity of human beings--and their view of their own capacity--to facilitate positive change.” Orphan Outreach’s emphasis on the spiritual and emotional development of children leads to this type of positive change. And by involving local churches to mentor the children, Orphan Outreach is helping to build the children’s networks of support. “All projects include Christian discipleship of the children,” the program’s coordinator Beth Galway said. “The children receive so many benefits, which often include their only meal of the day, a Christian education in most cases, and loving caregivers.” At times, sponsors can travel on mission trips and meet their child face to face. “Of course, having all of the sponsors and mission trip participants keeping these children in their prayers is probably the most important benefit,” Beth said. “Just this morning, I had a new sponsor ask if he could help his sponsored child forever! We are constantly trying to ensure that sponsors feel connected to the child and the program. As a new program, there is still a learning curve. We struggle with how to keep non-sponsored children from feeling left out.” For Orphan Outreach, 369 children remain to be sponsored, which would equate to an additional $16,000 monthly. Such consistent financial support enables the agency "to build quality into each program and allows them to have financial security," said Tiffany Taylor Wines, director of marketing for Orphan Outreach. Sponsorships extend benefits to all children, however, by freeing up other dollars to be directed toward overall operational costs. So, for the cost of some milk and other groceries, Shraddha--and children like her--can curl up in bed at night knowing there will be breakfast in the morning … and, thankfully, school.
Categories: Mission Network News

Storm damage and spiritual warfare

Mission Network News - Wed, 10/15/2014 - 5:00am

Cyclone Hudhud
(Image credit NASA.gov)

India (MNN) -- In India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi just returned from surveying the damage left behind by Cyclone Hudhud. Some officials say it could cost over $1 billion USD. Making landfall exactly one year to the day as Cyclone Phailin, Cyclone Hudhud tore through Andhra Pradesh and Orissa on Sunday. At least 400,000 people have been affected by Hudhud, and 24 people are known to have died as a result of the storm. Grand Rapids, Michigan-based Mission India hasn't been able to reach their partners yet because of damage to communication lines. Recently-appointed President of Mission India Todd VanEk asks you to pray that they'll hear from their partners soon. Also pray that the Lord will give Mission India guidance as they support partners throughout the country. "Our greatest challenge will continue to be keeping up with the Indian Church. People are coming to faith in Christ at a rate in India that I just don't think has been experienced by many people here," VanEk notes. It's one of the observations VanEk made during his first trip to India as the ministry's president.

Todd VanEk is Mission India's new USA President.
(Photo credit Mission India)

"I was officially in my role for two weeks, and I jumped on a plane and traveled to India," VanEk shares, adding that the visit had a two-fold purpose. "One [purpose] was to 'Meet Todd, our new president' and to continue to foster the great relationships that we have. "The other purpose [was] just allowing the Holy Spirit to lead my thoughts and my mind, in terms of the work that is being done there." During the trip, God's Spirit affirmed a calling VanEk felt to serve as Mission India's new President. "I just cannot think of anything I would rather do with my time and the leadership gifts that God has given to me, than to further the Kingdom of God in India," he shares. While VanEk had taken several trips to South Asia as a Mission India donor, this was his first visit as the ministry's leader. "Mission India and our family have a relationship that goes back 10 years," explains VanEk. "I think that was very strategic in the Lord's working of my life, bringing me to this point, because as I went in [this time], I've already established a relationship with many of the key leaders that we work with in India." As VanEk met with different leaders and visited partner locations, he became increasingly aware of the spiritual battle being waged in India.

In India, violence against Christian believers is on the rise. Pray for their safety!
(Photo, caption courtesy Mission India)

"This is, ultimately, not just a strategy that we're about. This is a spiritual battle that we're involved in," states VanEk. "Probably one of the most surprising things was that there's an area in the northeast that's probably 50-60% Christian, and there was some persecution there. "A church was burned, and that sent the message to us that, even in very strong Christian centers, there is [spiritual] work countering the work that we're doing." Learn more about Mission India's work by visiting their Web site. Then, add Mission India and their indigenous ministry partners to your prayer list.
Categories: Mission Network News

Here's to the Ones by Rhett Walker Band

New Release Tuesday - Tue, 10/14/2014 - 5:00am
Since their 2012 debut, COME TO THE RIVER, the Rhett Walker Band has toured non-stop with everyone from MercyMe to Newsboys, spending more time on the road than at home. The project generated the band's first Top 10 hit, "When Mercy Found Me," which garnered Walker a GRAMMY© nomination for CCM Song of the Year. The band also received three 2013 Dove nominations in multiple categories including New Artist of the Year, Rock/Contemporary Album of the Year and Rock/Contemporary Song of the Year. Since their inception, the group has been invited three times to perform on the Grand Ole Opry,[...]
Categories: Christian Music News

VIP by Manic Drive

New Release Tuesday - Tue, 10/14/2014 - 5:00am
VIP comes out 10/14/2014. Click here to find out how to play a part in creating this album: www.pledgemusic.com/manicdrive[...]
Categories: Christian Music News

Fightback Soundtrack by We Are Leo

New Release Tuesday - Tue, 10/14/2014 - 5:00am
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Categories: Christian Music News

The Dream by Sanctus Real

New Release Tuesday - Tue, 10/14/2014 - 5:00am
Capitol Christian Music Group announces that on October 14 Sanctus Real will release THE DREAM, their seventh studio album as well as their most personal project to date. Since banding together 18 years ago, this two-time GRAMMY-nominated band is excited to return with 12 songs, including its first single, "Lay It Down," which is already a top 10 hit and continues to climb the charts at radio. The members of Sanctus Real not only enjoy collaborating as a band and communicating about life and faith through their music, but are also a band well-known for being so real not just in[...]
Categories: Christian Music News

Unto Us by Aaron Shust

New Release Tuesday - Tue, 10/14/2014 - 5:00am
[...]
Categories: Christian Music News

Paradox Realities by BABZ

New Release Tuesday - Tue, 10/14/2014 - 5:00am
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Categories: Christian Music News

Sentimental Season by Wayne Haun

New Release Tuesday - Tue, 10/14/2014 - 5:00am
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Categories: Christian Music News