You reach a certain point in your life when the blessings of your life become abundantly apparent, not the least of which is the very gift of life itself and all the treasures, beauty and magnificence that come with it.
With that awareness however also comes a sense of responsibility, human duty, if you will, to "balance the books" and give back in return for those blessings. This is not to say I or others haven't given back "along the way," but suddenly it seems to take dominance, becoming a priority. Over the years I have, like others, contributed and "given back" to various organizations and causes, albeit somewhat "here and there," trying to make sure I've covered all bases. But also with age – and I suppose wisdom – comes the need to consolidate, "one stop shop" – conserve, focus, and be sure that you make the most out of every effort.
Ever since I was a young boy I had a keen fascination for the Man in the Salvation Army Suit with his bell and his bucket asking me, and the common man, to give – just a little – to help those in need. And for some reason it always seemed "fair" and resonated. I had the sense that a dime – if that was all I had, would do, and further, that dime would actually go to good use – all of it! In short, I trusted the "Man in the Suit" ringing his bell asking me to put something in his kettle. Of course, it never hurt that I also associated all of this during that magical time of Christmas even though I had a good inclination that the work of the Salvation Army was year round – as it is. more >>
Saddleback Church, which has 10 campuses across Southern California, is undertaking for the very first time in its 33-year history the launch of campuses outside of the United States in an effort to "finish the Great Commission," according to founding Pastor Rick Warren. Warren and his megachurch will see fruits of their years-long work with the "12 Cities PEACE Plan" come to bear this month with the launch of three global campuses, one each in Hong Kong, Berlin and Buenos Aires.
Saddleback Hong Kong is the first global congregation prepared for launch, and will officially open its doors this Sunday, Oct. 6. The following two Sundays will see Saddleback Berlin (Oct. 13) and Buenos Aires (Oct 20) follow suit. Eventually, over the next few years, these Saddleback church plants will be followed by sister congregations in Accra, Amman, Bangalore, Johannesburg, London, Manila, Mexico City, Moscow, and Tokyo.
"The ultimate goal is to finish the Great Commission by planting a body of Jesus (church), a Bible (portion of God's word) and a believer in the last unengaged people groups on Earth," Warren explained in a press release shared with The Christian Post. "Jesus said one day in heaven there will be people from every tribe and nation worshipping around God's throne. I intend to use all my influence in rallying the Global Church to do what Jesus commanded us 2000 years ago!" more >>
NEW YORK – A national Christian-centered program aimed at promoting awareness and taking action on human slavery is currently taking place over 12-days at New York City campuses, with a mission that one of the organizers described as "what Jesus went to the cross for."
"Awareness for something is like a 50 on a test. That's a fail," said Jonathan Walton, InterVarsity's New York City Urban Project Director, in a phone interview with The Christian Post on Thursday.
"If you make someone aware of something, and give them no action steps, that's just irresponsible. Awareness is inadequate, that's what people need to understand. You actually need to give people concrete steps to do this." more >>
After protesting a police order forbidding them from feeding the homeless on a city-owned parking lot, a Washington-based Christian group intends to disregard the ban and help those in need by carrying out its normal programming this week.
Based out of Olympia, Crazy Faith Ministries (CFM) has offered food to hundreds of homeless people twice a week for the past two years. However, last week the police department ordered the group to cease its operations at the parking lot. The email claimed the operation was "blocking vehicle traffic and parking," and that "garbage and debris [was] being left behind after your event."
The email also mentioned "food handling safety" and "participant and public safety" as a concern. more >>
A California church has argued that its religious freedom is being restricted as city officials attempt to ban a program that allows the homeless to park and sleep in their cars on church property.
This is the second time that Vista-based Cornerstone Church has allowed the nonprofit, Dreams for Change, to operate its program in their parking lot. An earlier effort a year ago was halted when the city said the program was illegal and fined the organization.
The city has argued that the Safe Parking Program violates zoning laws for the church site. Vista's Assistant City Attorney, Jonathan Stone, told the church in a letter last week that it is not authorized to operate an emergency shelter. Further, he asserted, that despite Cornerstone Church's allegations that its religious freedom is being infringed upon, there is legal precedent where churches have had to follow municipal zoning regulations. more >>
The Christian Relief Fund (CRF) and Bread for a Hungry World (Bread), two worldwide Christian ministries, have finished an official merger this week, a move which empowers both, representatives say. The idea for the merger came from a dual magazine ad.
"Bobby Moore, President of Bread for a Hungry World, told me he thought we would be better working together than apart, since we were doing the same thing and had similar philosophies," Milton Jones, president of the Christian Relief Fund, told The Christian Post in an interview on Wednesday. Jones said Moore came across the idea when he saw an ad for CRF and an ad for Bread side by side in a magazine.
Moore suggested the umbrella organization take the name "The Christian Relief Fund" and volunteered to serve under the CRF president, Jones said. The Bread president will serve as vice president of global operation, but he was unavailable for comment to CP while currently serving in Nigeria. more >>