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Rural China will receive a precious gift

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

(Photo by Bibles for China)

China (MNN) – Bibles seem to be extremely abundant, yet receiving one could mean the world to someone in a distant village in China. Bibles for China is preparing for their next Bible distribution this November. A group of seven will be split into two teams and will verify the delivery of 16,000 Bibles to believers in rural China. There are over 1.5 billion people in China and 100 million believers. The only access the people have to the Bible is a few pages that they have copied down by hand, verses committed to memory, or worn-down Bibles that are shared throughout the village. BFC reports that people living in rural China have very limited income that hardly covers their basic needs. Most people live on as little as $500 a year. Villages are so remote that traveling outside of their community is difficult and rare; receiving a Bible of their own would be like receiving an exotic and precious gift. A former Bible distribution member wrote, “Even if the means of transportation were available, it would not be affordable. What Satan had intended to use as shackles, however, God used for inspiration. He used for hope. I witnessed a faith so strong, a hope so deep, so inspiring, that it sent shock waves through me, changing my expectations, realigning my priorities. and redefining my relationships.” The group of seven will be leaving for China in less than a month, and they ask for prayer that all the Bibles will be distributed without interference. Another group will be journeying to China the spring of 2015. Over the next two months, Bibles for China will be collecting donations for Bibles. One Bible costs just $5. Click here to help.
Categories: Mission Network News

Indigenous missionaries or Western missionaries?

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

(Photo credit Micky Aldridge via Flickr)

International (MNN) -- There's a controversy afoot. MNN asked President and CEO of The Mission Society, Max Wilkins, for insight. "There are many who are starting to say that the season for Western missionaries in the rest of the world has passed, and that it's the day of the indigenous missionaries," shares Wilkins. "I think that fails to take into consideration several different dynamics." The Great Commission Prime among those dynamics is Christ's command to His disciples in Matthew 28:16-20, otherwise known as the Great Commission: "Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. And when they saw Him, they worshiped Him, but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

"The Lord has given us all a call to 'go' and to make disciples of all the nations. It's not an either/or thing; we all have this global mandate."
(Photo credit The Mission Society)

"The Lord has given us all a call to 'go' and to make disciples of all the nations," notes Wilkins. "It's not an either/or thing; we all have this global mandate." In addition, many countries that were previously "receiving countries" only--meaning they needed missionaries and teachers to bring them the Good News--are now sending their own missionaries to the Western world. "Jesus is alive and well and working [in] just about every place on the planet today," says Wilkins. "The world has changed, and the needs of the global Church have changed." However, "While the [world] landscape may have changed, the need still exists for both indigenous missionaries and missionaries from more developed Church countries." Global missions challenges As a "sending" agency, The Mission Society recruits, trains, and sends what they call "cross-cultural witnesses," or missionaries. Wilkins says missionary recruitment is becoming more challenging as the world changes, but "we're still seeing significant numbers of men and women who sense the call of the Lord to give their lives and use their lives and their skill set and their training as full-time overseas missionaries."

(Photo credit The Mission Society)

Another change Wilkins has observed is that many churches are becoming "sending" agencies. Congregations throughout the United States, parts of East and West Africa, and South America have begun actively supporting and sending their own missionaries to unreached and least-reached communities, both within their own nations and beyond. "I think that's really exciting and has a lot of possibilities for the future," Wilkins states. What it means for you At the end of the day, the global need for people to hear about Christ and His salvation remains the same. The need for your prayers remains the same, too.

(Photo credit The Mission Society)

"There's a lot of things that we have a tendency to want to pray about: strength and safety, and all of those things, but the people in the field all have a similar prayer desire, which is that they would be fruitful," Wilkins shares. "There's no greater joy, I think, than for our missionaries to see fruitfulness, to see people coming to faith and being discipled and begin to get a Kingdom vision for the world. There's great value in the Body of Christ praying for that reality." Find more prayer needs here.
Categories: Mission Network News

Awaiting identity of fire victim

WGRC News - Tue, 10/14/2014 - 1:24pm

The coroner’s office in Columbia County is awaiting dental and other results before positively identifying a body found in a burned out home in Bloomsburg over the weekend. The fire broke out early on Sunday morning at the Drinker Street home owned by Todd Hess. A body was found in the burned out house after the fire was put out and it’s believed to be that of Hess. The cause of fire remains under investigation.

Categories: Local News

Prayer at Lincoln Memorial

WGRC News - Tue, 10/14/2014 - 1:22pm

Thousands of Christians from more than a hundred churches around the Washington D.C. area gathered at the foot of the Lincoln Memorial on the National Mall yesterday to pray for the city and national revival.
CBN News heard one woman say, “Lord, we pray that you would radically change our thoughts, our words and our actions to be Your thoughts, Your words and Your actions.”

Categories: Local News

Bishops Debate How to Embrace Gay Couples in Roman Catholicism

Christian Post - Church & Ministry - Tue, 10/14/2014 - 12:20pm
Roman Catholic Bishops are said to be looking into the positive aspects of gay couples living together without being married, as the major Synod on the family gathering at the Vatican reached its half-way point. The bishops have reportedly ruled out changes to the traditional definition of marriage, but noted that gay people have "gifts and qualities" to offer the church.
Categories: Christian Post

Solving Problems Through Prayer

Christian Post - Living - Tue, 10/14/2014 - 8:40am
When the king of Judah called for a nationwide fast to seek God's help, the people from every town convened to pray. Jehoshaphat's actions and words teach us some important truths about solving life's problems through prayer. God is bigger than our problems.
Categories: Christian Post

Safeguarding Syrian future

Mission Network News - Tue, 10/14/2014 - 5:00am

(Photo courtesy Kids Alive International)

Lebanon (MNN) -- Nearly three million Syrian children are not attending school due to the civil war raging in their homeland. The future of the nation is at stake. Jed Hamoud, Vice President of Operations at Kids Alive International, notes that this crisis has been 10 years in the making. "The fear is that the Syrian people are going to be faced with a generation of kids that are not educated. That would have a massive impact on the society as a whole." Hamoud continues, "Many of those kids have been out of school for a year or two. They have missed a lot of schooling, so what we're really calling it is a literacy/education program." Think of the doctors, businessmen, entrepreneurs, educators, scientists, writers in a single generation. In other words, "When the current generation passes and the new generation is coming in, they're going to have a tremendous shortage of educated people." Yet, hundreds of thousands of displaced children are struggling to enroll for school in their host countries and in Syria. In Syria, many of the school buildings are filled with Internally Displaced Peoples or the military. For others, high school fees and working to survive are the main reasons kids aren't in school. In Lebanon, it's all of the above for the Syrian refugees. In fact, as Lebanon has no official refugee camps, Syrian families regularly go into debt to cover costs like housing, healthcare, and education. Plus, the education system is simply overwhelmed by the sheer numbers of child refugees. According to a recent Save The Children report, 4 out of 5 Syrian refugee children in Lebanon don't attend school. Although there is a plan to teach Syrian refugee children in an informal educational setting in Lebanon, the strategy is still in the works. But most kids can't afford to wait, says Hamoud.

(Photo courtesy Kids Alive International)

Kids Alive Lebanon looked at the available space they had and converted a workshop into classroom space. "The goal is to try to help those children come up to speed, so that we can streamline them and transition them with the standard school curriculum," Hamoud explains, adding, "We're expanding it to the maximum of the facility that we have today, and we will be having about 60 children that we'll be taking in to schooling." One of three new classrooms will provide a safe environment for these refugee children to get what they can't get at a normal "school," says Hamoud. "We do provide education. We actually will be providing meals to the children. We're providing transportation, but at the heart of it, we will be teaching the kids the Scriptures, the value that Christ has bought us. So it is at the very core of our ministry here in Lebanon." The children's desks will arrive next week, and the new "Syrian Oasis" will open its doors on November 3. There's still a lot to do. "We've hired one teacher. We need to hire at least two more teachers to help out. And we need to buy the supplies. We have some desks, but we are going to need a lot more because we weren't counting on taking in that many children." Please pray that God would do amazing things in the lives of the needy kids Kids Alive will be serving.
Categories: Mission Network News

International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church

Mission Network News - Tue, 10/14/2014 - 5:00am

(Photo cred: Open Doors USA)

USA (MNN) -- The International Day of Prayer for the persecuted Church, or IDOP, is approaching quickly on November 2. IDOP is a day in which Christians worldwide unite together to pray for over 100 million fellow Christians stretched across the globe. These Christians are persecuted consistently. More than half a million churches in 150 countries participate in IDOP. Open Doors USA, a ministry dedicated to supporting persecuted Christians, is providing free resources, downloads, and special Webcasts in honor of IDOP. They are including kits for churches, small groups, families, and schools, which include a leader’s guide, DVDs, information on how to order “One With Them” wristbands and how to participate in their live webcasts, which will be held Saturday November 1 at 8 pm. An exclusive Webcast will be held for churches and small groups on Sunday, November 2, at 7 pm. The Webcast will be hosted by Open Doors President and CEO Dr. David Curry. Curry says “This year has been unusual in every way. You see stories throughout the news about what’s happening to Christians. We need to care. The world, the media--the mainstream media--will not care more than you.” He invites people to join IDOP and sign up for their Webcast, which will feature several speakers. Pastor David Platt, president of the International Mission Board and the author of the best selling book, Radical, will be speaking about how Americans can do their part for the persecuted church. Author of The Insanity of God, Nik Ripken, will tell his story about what is happening in Somalia and other countries. Also the award-winning group Selah and several persecuted Christians will be featured. For an IDOP kit and information about the Open Doors Web cast, click here. Also watch for information about an upcoming Mission Network News special IDOP broadcast.
Categories: Mission Network News

Two churches burn in India

Mission Network News - Tue, 10/14/2014 - 5:00am
India (MNN/MNI) -- Within 48 hours, two churches in India burned. Grand Rapids-based Mission India shared details in a Facebook post. The first reported fire took place in a small village. It remains a mystery how the fire started, and police are still investigating. A few families woke up to the smell of smoke and went outside to investigate.

Villagers were able to save some
of this partially-burned church.
(Mission India photo)

They found the church going up in flames. Alarmed, they doused the fire with water. Thankfully only part of the church was burned in the fire. They were able to replace the damaged roof with a temporary blue tarp to keep out rain and dew. A pastor named Yamar and his wife have been sharing about Jesus in the community for 10 years. He says, "It's very heartbreaking, but we trust in the Lord that there's something better ahead for us." 1,500 miles away from that site in east India, a second church was also burned. The following morning after the fire, nothing remained of the building but bits of wood, ashes, carpet rags, and the rubble of what used to be musical instruments. The pastor of this church oversees a class of Mission India Church Planters who are doing outreach among the families living on the nearby hills. As violence against Christians is on the rise in India, pray for their safety.
Categories: Mission Network News

Tensions relaxing in East Ukraine, conditions grim for refugees

Mission Network News - Tue, 10/14/2014 - 5:00am

(Photo courtesy of Wade Kusack of Mission Eurasia)

Ukraine (MNN) -- One room, 50 people. A bunk bed as a family's "home." This is an example of a refugee camp in Ukraine as described by Wade Kusack of Mission Eurasia (formerly Russian Ministries). In East Ukraine, there have been several reports of Russian troops moving out of conflict zones. CNN speculates that tensions are relaxing between Russia and Ukraine. Despite this news, conditions for refugees continue to look grim. As winter approaches, many are wondering how refugees will survive brutal temperatures. In the camp mentioned above, there are no heaters in the building. The amount of people crammed into a small space means if one person gets sick, everyone else does, too. Sleeping is hard when small children cry during the night.

(Image courtesy of Wade Kusack of Mission Eurasia)

In another area, Sergey Rakhuba of Mission Eurasia reports: "We're in the town of Slavyansk in Eastern Ukraine, and we're in one of those temporarily-organized places where refugees or internally displaced people from all the regions where the war is taking place, where Ukrainian forces fight with the pro-Russian terrorists here, are trying to survive with their families." This city received heavy damage from being under siege for about three months. While many churches have been burned and many hospitals bombed, Mission Eurasia has seen the church step up and lead Slavyansk toward healing.

(Image courtesy of Mission Eurasia)

In a video report from Slavyansk, a group of young refugees interact behind Rakhuba. He says, "And you see those kids in the background? They're here for a few weeks, but the winter is coming. And we see how enormous [is] the need of warm clothing and shelter and food and medicine." Early on, Mission Eurasia reacted to this need by forming the "I Care" program. This was a response to a set of standards defined by a group of pastors and mission leaders who met earlier this year. Mission Eurasia says it was conclusive that:
  • Christians should not have a detached, uncaring attitude toward war, because God calls His people to engage in their communities to promote healing and forgiveness.
  • Christians must serve and defend the suffering and dying--those who are victims of the conflict.
  • Christians must pursue and encourage reconciliation, reconstruction, and forgiveness so that God’s love and power is proclaimed, even in times of tragedy.
Rakhuba explains this program seeks to meet the many-faceted needs of the refugees: "With our I Care program, we're trying to provide, first of all, food for these families, then we provide counseling, encouragement. We provide training for pastors." You can help support this work by clicking here. And if you already have come alongside Mission Eurasia, they are thankful for your help. Rakhuba says, "We're so grateful when you continue supporting Mission Eurasia that supports local churches to provide all that these families need here. Thank you all, and God bless you all."
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
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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

The InBetween by Scarlet White

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