Awesome Response to Community Appreciation Sunday at Urban Hope

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2014 Community Appreciation Sunday


2014 Community Appreciation Sunday

There was an awesome response last Sunday when community service personnel and teachers were honored during the Urban Hope Sunday services.

“There were so many people who were there for the Community appreciation Sunday,” said Ed Lewis, executive director of CE National. “People from the community were everywhere and we gave them awards and read citations and Scripture and the people honored the school and police leaders. We also gave out free raffle tickets and some of the ones who won the gift cards were guests and in huge need of help. The people loved it.  Krista shared a moving testimony of her coming to Jesus and Rick Cartegena shared the Gospel.  Many wrote responses to the invitation. The Sunday was a great answer to prayer.”

Please pray for the follow-up that will be done with commitments that were made and for the continued ministry of Urban Hope.

Kurt Johnston to Present to The National Institute Students

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Kurt Johnston speaking at the CE Leadership Summit for Youth Workers

Kurt Johnston speaking at the CE Leadership Summit for Youth Workers

The National Institute for the Development of Ministries to Youth has invited Kurt Johnston to present to students and youth workers on Wednesday, January 13, 2016. Kurt is the youth pastor at Saddleback Church in southern California and has been a regular guest speaker for TNI for the last 16 years.

Kurt will be sharing that Wednesday afternoon from 1 p.m. to 5:30 at the Russell Center at CE National. Kurt will be speaking to the TNI “Strategizing for Church and Campus Ministry” class on effective ministry to students of the current generation. Kurt is a gifted communicator with years of experience and we look forward to a profitable day learning from his research and practices.

If you are interested in attending this training session, or have questions about this opportunity, please contact Timothy Kurtaneck (tkob@cenational.org) or Judy Fisher (judy@cenational.org).

Afshin Ziafat to Speak at Momentum Youth Conference 2016

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Afshin Ziafat speaking at Momentum Youth Conference

Afshin Ziafat speaking at Momentum Youth Conference

Afshin Ziafat will return as a main session speaker at Momentum 2016.

Afshin is the lead pastor of Providence Church in Frisco, Texas. Before taking his current role in October 2010, Afshin spent over a decade traveling nationally and internationally proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ in churches, retreats, camps, conferences and missions.

Afshin helped launch Vertical Bible Study at Baylor University in Waco, Texas. He also partners with Elam Ministries and travels into the Middle East regularly to train Iranian pastors. Afshin’s passion is to teach the Word of God as the authority and guide for life, to preach Jesus Christ as the only Savior and Redeemer of mankind and to proclaim the love of Christ as the greatest treasure and hope in life. He and his wife, Meredith, currently reside in Frisco, Texas, along with their daughters, Elyse and Ansley.

Visit the Momentum Youth Conference website to see the names of other special guests.

Urban Hope Adopts Local School Library

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2015_dec_18_uh_mural
A local elementary school has asked if Urban Hope would adopt their library. Amber Besson, Urban Hope’s children’s ministry director, is very excited about the opportunities for ministry this presents. Here Amber talks about how the opportunity came about and what it will mean for Urban Hope.

Here at Urban Hope we are so excited for how God is answering our prayers and showing us His faithfulness. William Cramp Elementary School is the neighborhood elementary school where the majority of the kids who attend Kingdom Kids go to school. We have been asking God to allow us to have an opportunity to serve the school in a way that shows that we are invested in the children in our neighborhood academically and spiritually.

We have been meeting with the principal of the school​ for the last year, and last spring she gave us an idea that seemed impossible, yet so perfect. The principal informed us that the school library had been shut down for the past five years due to budget cuts in the school district. She suggested that we, as a church, could adopt the library and make it a place where students would be excited to read and learn.

This would mean that we, as a church, would have the chance to interact with the students once a week when we opened the library. What an amazing opportunity to build relationships with students, teachers, and staff! We have been praying about this idea since last spring, and finally this fall, God made it a possibility. It has now become our task to renovate and redecorate the library. Ashli Moon, one of the staff members here at Urban Hope, drew up three different options for a giant mural that will be painted in the library. We submitted the ideas to the principal and the students voted on their favorite drawing for the mural.

On Sunday, at our Community Appreciation Sunday, we unveiled the students’ choice for the library mural. We are so excited to begin work on the library starting in January. We are praying that God will allow the library to be ready to be opened in May of this year. To God be the glory in this school, in our church, and in our community!

CE National Faithfulness Award – Janet Minnix

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Janet Minnix

Janet Minnix

Each year CE National honors faithful servants for the cause of Christ. We’ll be introducing the winners over the next several weeks. Thanks to these who have served others so faithfully in the name of Jesus!

Janet Minnix, from the Ghent Grace Brethren Church in Roanoke, Virginia, is a Faithfulness Award recipient.

Janet has dedicated her life to ministering to women and girls. She has been the president of Women of Grace USA for 17 years
and has helped equip women so that each identifies and fulfills her unique calling in ministering to others. Watch her video here.

Your End-of-Year Gift to CE National Doubles

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Ed Lewis

Ed Lewis

A special note from Ed Lewis, executive director of CE National.

Recently I was talking with a friend who loves the Lord and desires to see the hearts and lives of people impacted by Jesus.  I am so excited to tell you that our friend has graciously agreed to give a $15,000 “matching gift” to help meet CE National’s “year-end” financial need of $30,000.  This special gift essentially allows every end-of-the-year gift given to this Church Effectiveness ministry to DOUBLE.  How exciting is that?!

Why are we so excited?   One reason is that CE National has been faithful in our ministries but we are not seeing financial gifts come in for the CE National General Fund. We have been blessed with designated gifts to programs or buildings but we are almost $30,000 behind where we should be at this time of the year. We are prayerfully concerned…and God blessed us with this opportunity to see us double the gifts we need for outreach.

Why do we need this?  We need this because of the outreaches we are doing at the Urban Hope Training Center, the block parties we hope to offer for churches at Momentum this summer as an outreach, the new children’s program we are starting at Urban Hope, and the new local church consulting we are doing to help churches focus more and more on winning lost people.   We have seen public decisions for Jesus almost every week at Urban Hope and we have a huge community appreciation Sunday set for December 13th.  Also, the local elementary school has invited us to oversee their library for them! We can paint it and offer reading classes since the lack of funding for the library will keep it closed unless we run it for them!!   And, the local half-way house that houses 400 people getting out of prison has given us an open door to have Bible studies in their place!  We must move ahead NOW with opportunities like these.  We need your prayers and we need your financial support.

God has been so good to the ministries of CE National and we are grateful.  There are children at Urban Hope, students at Momentum, collegiates in the National Institute and SUM programs, adults coming to North of 55 and CELS, pastors attending Pastorpedia Live events, and many more who all benefit from the ministry of CE National.  Any money donated allows us to continue to offer these life-changing ministries.

You have been a part of this Church Effectiveness ministry and I appreciate your partnership with us.  At this time of need, will you be so kind as to give an end of the year investment that I believe the Lord wants to use to see even more lives changed?  A gift of $1000 given at this time becomes a gift of $2000.  A $500 gift turns into $1000.  A donation of any amount DOUBLES.  Now that is a good investment!  All gifts are tax deductible which will help interested individuals be able to give even more to things that last forever.

Why not give a gift that will change a life?!  And why not give a financial gift that doubles in impact?!

You may give online by going to cenational.org/givenow, click “Special Project” and type “End of the year” in the special project field. If you would like to give by check, make your check out to CE National and write “End of the year” in the memo field. Mail your check to CE National, PO Box 365, Winona Lake, IN 46590.

Thank you in advance for giving to the spiritual needs of others and as the Lord directs you.  We could not do this ministry without you.  May the Lord give you a wonderful Christmas and a blessed New Year as you seek to live ON MISSION for Him in all that you do.

In His Work,

Ed Lewis

Ed Lewis
Executive Director

Vision Conference 2016 and CE National

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Each year, staff members of CE National participate in Vision Conference, the annual conference of the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches. Last year, Ed Lewis was a featured speaker on the last day of the “Risk” event.

This year, CE National looks forward to hosting a breakfast as well as leading equipping seminars for church leaders during this event in Toronto. Will you consider joining us?

The main speakers for Vision Conference 2016, held in Toronto, July 22-25 are:

  • Bartley Sawatsky: 20 years of experience as a pastor in Toronto, Canada
  • Michael Frost: an internationally recognized Australian missiologist and one of the leading voices in the missional church movement.
  • Neil Cole: one of the key founders of what is known as the organic church movement.
  • Florent Varak: 25 years of pastoral experience in Lyon, France.
  • Paul Klawitter: working since 1975 in church planting and youth ministry in France.
  • Nathan Bryant: served as team leader for the Canadian church planting ministry which eventually became GBCanada.

Vision is the annual conference for the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches. More information is available at visionconference.us.

New Resources in the CE National Lending Library

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2015_nov_27_library#struggles: A book by Craig Groeschel
How to keep your eyes fixed on Christ instead of glued to a screen.

There is a tension in our world today that didn’t exist even five years ago: We are almost never out of arm’s reach of a screen, and we are almost never out of eyesight of a status update.

Understanding the Times: A book by Jeff Myers and David Noebel
A Survey of Competing Worldviews

Your view of God determines your view of the world. Understanding the Times is a systematic way to understand the ideas that rule our world. While the material is expansive, the engaging, easy-to-understand writing style invites you to discover the truths of God–and our world.

Visit cenational.org/library to see these and other titles.

Pray for Community Outreach Sunday at Urban Hope

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urbanHope
This Sunday, December 13, Urban Hope Community Church will hold a special service to honor school principals, police, and other community leaders. Last year’s event drew 250 people to the Sunday morning worship service.

Please pray that God will work through this outreach event.

CE National Faithfulness Award – Randy Haulk

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Randy with his  wife, Judy

Randy with his wife, Judy

Each year CE National honors faithful servants for the cause of Christ. We’ll be introducing the winners over the next several weeks. Thanks to these who have served others so faithfully in the name of Jesus!

Pastor Randy Haulk – Meyersdale Grace Brethren Church, Meyersdale, Pennsylvania.

Over the 17 years of serving the church body, Randy has discipled and trained many men to do the work of the ministry. He has invested countless hours mentoring interns and youth pastors who started their ministry career in Meyersdale. Randy has taught many people how to put together Vacation Bible Schools, all while preaching Sunday mornings, leading Bible study in the evenings, teaching Wednesday night lessons, doing hospital visits, and serving for over 20 years at Momentum Youth Conference as the off campus options coordinator.

Jordan Howerton Band Returns to Momentum in 2016

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We’re excited to be welcoming back to Momentum Youth Conference the Jordan Howerton Band. Watch the music video the band filmed during Momentum 2015.

Hailing from the Midwest, the Jordan Howerton Band is committed to creating worship resources, leading with those resources, and equipping others to do the same. Leading at events and churches across the nation, JHB is committed to fostering a passion for the Kingdom of Jesus Christ both on and off the stage. Visit jordanhowertonband.com to find out more about the band.

Registration for Momentum opens February 1. Find out more at buildmomentum.org.

Three-fold Communion Resource from Grace Church, Wooster, Ohio

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Pastor Bob Fetterhoff, lead pastor of Grace Church in Wooster, Ohio, filmed 3-fold Communion videos in the Holy Land. These 5-7 minute videos help explain what Jesus was teaching His disciples the night before he died. Each can be downloaded and played during a Communion service or used as a teaching tool for church leaders.

The Bread and the Cup
Foot washing
The Love Feast

Bob leads tours to the Holy Land. The next one is scheduled for March 16–27, 2015. Visit OhioholylandTours.com to find out more.

CE National Faithfulness Award – Janice Burkholder

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Janice Burkholder

Janice Burkholder

Each year CE National honors faithful servants for the cause of Christ. We’ll be introducing the winners over the next several weeks. Thanks to these who have served others so faithfully in the name of Jesus!

Janice Burkholder from Grace Church, Ephrata, Pennsylvania

Along with her husband, Glen, Janice was a founding member of Grace Church in Ephrata, Pennsylvania. She has served in many areas including children’s ministry director, Backyard Bible Club coordinator, teaching Serving My Master, women’s commission, and helping lead a care group. Janice recently retired after 34 years as the church office manager.

Lancaster County Christian School Brings 36 to Urban Hope

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2015_july_23_crosswalk
Lancaster County Christian School brought 32 juniors and 4 adults on November 10-12th to the Urban Hope Training Center in Philadelphia. On their first night at Urban Hope, the group went to Love Park and the subways to engage in homeless ministry. Many students had their first opportunity to share their faith!

The next day they were trained in evangelism techniques and went on a prayer walk in and around China town. The group finished their day by attending Urban Hope’s ROCK (student outreach) ministries and helping with a children’s Thanksgiving outreach. As a result of their experience they have the desire to go back home and share Christ with family members and friends.

Here are some written testimonies from the group:

  • Joanna Boone: “I’ve always had a desire to serve my community or other missions. So because of this experience through the training center, God has spoken to me to do something about it.”
  • Aubrey Esheiman: “I came here expecting to help those in need, to give to the community, but I never thought that the community would do that for me as well. Nevertheless, I learned so much from the people that I talked to.”
  • Max Gehman: “God had opened my eyes to see people through the way He sees them. I have grown to love and show compassion to people that I have tried to avoid for so long.”

If you would like information about bringing your group to Urban Hope, visit urbanhope.net.

Merry Christmas from The National Institute

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TNI students and staff pose with their new sweatshirts

TNI students and staff pose with their new sweatshirts

Thirty National Institute students majoring in youth ministry had their Christmas party celebration earlier this week. With the semester coming to a conclusion in less than a week, it was a great time to relax, hang out, enjoy some food, play some games (the gals decorated the tree much nicer than the guys did theirs, but we could have seen that coming…), read Luke 2, and give each student their TNI Christmas gift.

TNI director, Timothy Kurtaneck, said, “These students are a delight. They are enjoyable to be around and they are making a difference on campus, in ministries around town, and back in their home areas. It is our privilege to have the time to do training and equipping with these young adults who are already impacting the coming generation—and will continue to do so for years to come.”

From The National Institute—Merry Christmas!