Christian Responses to Global Turmoil
It seems we can’t turn on the news without being confronted with something totally unforeseen, and entirely beyond our control. Whether it’s social upheaval in the Wisconsin legislature or on the street of Egypt and Libya; or the tsunami and subsequent nuclear disaster in Japan, in recent weeks we have received news reports from around the world of uprisings, unrest and natural disasters.
How should we as Christians feel, and more importantly, react in response to these things?
God’s Word gives us three meaningful ways to respond to the dramatic images and heart-rending news coming to us each day. How we respond gives witness to our families and to a watching world about a most glorious truth and unshakeable hope, captured in these simple words: Our God reigns.
Read the expanded article by Rev. Matt Miller, senior pastor of Greenville (SC) ARP Church, in the May issue of the ARP Magazine. To subscribe online, go to arpmagazine.org.
First Short-Term Missions Trip to Guadalajara
From Juan Carlos and Ruth Bonilla
We are so excited about receiving our first short-term missions team to work alongside us April 16-23. The team consists of two people from Neely’s Creek ARP Church and one from Paducah, KY.
We are just beginning our ministry in Guadalajara, Mexico, so it’s perfect timing to have help and encouragement from fellow Christians. Our goal for the week is for them to help us build relationships with people in our neighborhood. In order to do this, we will host an English camp at our house April 19-21 for children ages 5-12.
The last day, we will invite the children to return with their parents for a closing program and cookout. We see this opportunity as a great first step for church planting – to first get to know the people in our neighborhood and to build relationships with them. A large banner hanging in front of our house advertises the camp. Posters and flyers are in nearby restaurants and when the group arrives, we will walk around the neighborhood handing out flyers.
In order for this camp to be successful and for us to meet people and build relationships, we need your PRAYERS!!! Please pray that God will bring children to the camp and that the parents will come on Thursday night so we can meet them.
Please pray that through the English classes, music, games, crafts, etc the children will see the love of God shining in each of us. Please also pray for safety and protection for the team as they fly and as we travel with them around the city.
We look forward to writing you after the English camp, to share with you the many ways in which God was at work!
Please visit our ministry website for more info:
ARPs to Guadalajara: www.ARPstoG.com
World Witness Church Planting in Guadalajara, Mexico
Church Planting Website – ARPs to Guadalajara: www.ARPstoG.com.
ARP church plant, Leith, Scotland
By Athole Rennie
Thank you for your prayers for our “Debating Delusions” event last night. We were greatly encouraged by the response. We worked out that as many as 50 percent of those who attended were non-Christians, many of whom were people we’ve gotten to know in the past year. David Robertson responded to some of the objections raised in Richard Dawkins’ book, The God Delusion, and then took questions from the audience.
We had some great discussions afterwards and several people filled out cards requesting more information on the church plant. I had one conversation with one of our staff members at the venue. She said that leading up to the event, she had been dreading working and having to sit in on the talk. However, she had been very challenged by the whole thing and was planning to request the night off to attend one of our next events. She said that what we were doing was really good and that there was nothing else like it around Leith.
Leading up to the event, we promoted the event using Facebook advertising. For £20, our advertisement appeared on 285,000 Facebook pages in the Edinburgh area over the course of two weeks. Of those 285,000 page views, 40 people actually clicked on the ad to find out more. We know of one person who came to the event as a result of the Facebook ad. She talked to some of the guys in the plant after the event, and has expressed an interest in coming along to church on Sunday!
See the June/July issue of the ARP Magazine for the expanded article on the Outreach North America page. To subscribe, go to arpmagazine.org.
We give thanks to God for answered prayer and ask that you continue to pray for the following:
- For those who came to this event– that what they heard would encourage them to further explore the claims of Christ.
- For the ongoing relationships we have with many who attended. That this meeting would fuel further gospel conversations.
- Give thanks for the staff member who expressed an interest in attending a future event and pray that initial enthusiasm would lead to further interest.
- For those who filled out information cards, and that the follow-up would be fruitful.
Scottish church planter, Rev. Athole Rennie was ordained as an ARP church minister in Edinburgh on Nov. 3, 2009.
NO FRILLS FRIDAY
Every other month, on the first Friday, First A.R. Presbyterian Church in Gastonia, NC, hosts “No Frills Friday.” The name reflects the fact that no food or other social amenities are offered. They gather strictly for a 2 ½ -hour in-depth Bible study. However, an exception was made last month when those attending enjoyed a slice of Russ McAllister’s birthday cake.
It’s in the Mail
Moderator-elect Andrew Putnam has mailed a copy of An Exhortation to Peace and Unity to every ARP minister, and to every congregation currently without a minister. Rev. Putnam asks that each minister read the booklet in preparation for the upcoming meeting of General Synod in June. “This booklet is commended for your reading and spiritual edification in a time when an exhortation to peace and unity is sorely needed in the Christian Church,” he said.
Additional copies are available from the arpbookstore.com.
Synod Reports Past Due!
Cindy Scott in Central Services needs your “Report to Synod” right away: firstname.lastname@example.org. Don’t make her come after you!
New Pages in The ARP
Be on the lookout for new, exciting pages in the ARP Magazine, beginning with the May issue:
Pg. 8: Family Connection (In a world of TV and computers in every room, what do you do to bring your family together?).
Pg 24: A Devotion From Serenity Acres (A Women’s Ministries devotion by Barbara Thayer).
Pgs 28 & 29: These pages will be written by Dr. Sukho Moon, senior pastor of Hyo Shin Presbyterian Church, NY. The first page will be an English translation, and the second page will be written in Korean. The ARP denomination currently has nearly 50 Korean churches. Please join us in welcoming them as a vital part of our denomination.
The ARP Magazine is now on Facebook and Twitter!
Now you can follow your favorite denominational magazine on the world’s best social media sites.
Enquiring Minds Want to Know!
>>>Just how does God work through horse racing?<<<
The answer can be found (where else?) on page 18 in the May ARP Magazine – arpmagazine.org.
Rooted for Renewal
From Hope Chapel’s earliest days, our vision has been to be part of Greensboro, NC in such a integral way that if we ceased to exist, the city itself would miss us. In both word and deed, we want to demonstrate the Gospel to this community. Six months ago we began to pray and search within our ministry area for a building to lease. Our time meeting at Lindley Elementary School has been wonderful (and we will continue to partner with them in all the ways we have been), but we have felt a need to have space available during the week as our ministry grows.
We’ve identified a warehouse building about a half-mile from our current location, located in a high-traffic area and with great potential to be a ministry tool for Hope Chapel. We have begun the negotiation process with the owner and are close to reaching an agreement.
In the meantime, we have had plans drawn and are seeking to raise approximately $80,000 as a one-time up-fit cost. Once we move in, our monthly expenses will actually be less than we currently pay for worship space and our 1,000 square-foot office/rehearsal space.
We feel this is a great opportunity to deepen roots in our ministry area. Would you consider joining us in prayer and through financial support? Plans and more details can be found on our website: http://www.hopechapelgreensboro.org.