Category Archives: Christian News
(Katy, Texas) Christian writer and blogger Rev. Robert A. Crutchfield learned yesterday that he has won Article of the Month for December in Scriggler.com’s international writing competition. It was barely two months ago that he won Article of the Month, and Author of the Month in the same competition. This latest victory gives him three international writing awards in as many months.
Crutchfield won in December with his article, What Compass Guides Your Thinking ? In it he discusses the conflict that people often face between popular culture, peer pressure etc. and spiritual teachings. In the article he makes the point that just as with computers, if you don’t like your output ( life direction etc.,) You must change your input. ( Cultural influences, Spiritual influences etc.) His article came in first out of 217 other entrants. Commenting on his latest win he said “ Its always nice to see your efforts recognized. This is a reader’s choice type of reward so I am very grateful to the readers at Scriggler.com for it. At the same time its true value to me lies in using it as an opportunity to bring our ministry to the attention of a constantly widening audience.” The article drew so much support that Crutchfield came in fourth out of 336 total entrants for December’s Author of the Month title. By contrast when he won Author of the Month in October he had three articles entered. All three finished in the top ten that month, two of them in the top five.
Crutchfield is founder of FaithInspires.Org a Christian news and information blog read all over the world. FaithInspires.Org was recently ranked 33rd out of 971 member blogs by the Fellowship of Christian Bloggers. He is also a Christian growth and healing expert at Self-Growth.com the world’s leading self-help website. In addition he is Pastor at Compassion Church of Katy in Katy, Texas outside Houston. Crutchfield founded that small congregation and preaches locally almost every week. He previously served as chaplain of the Katy Fire and EMS Department.
Malteser International Americas Announces Thomas A. Wessels as Succeeding President of Disaster Relief Organization
MIAMI, Dec. 28, 2016 /Christian Newswire/ — Malteser International Americas, the Miami-based global humanitarian organization and relief agency of the Order of Malta, has elected MG (Ret) Thomas A. Wessels, KMOb, of Atlanta, Georgia as President and Chairman of the Board of Directors.
Mr. Wessels, former First Vice President at Merrill Lynch and retired Major General of the United States Army Reserves, currently sits as a Director on the Board of Directors, and he is a Knight of Malta in Obedience for the Order of Malta, U.S. Federal Association.
His financial acumen combined with his strategic military experience are tremendous assets, which will drive the organization effectively forward in a fiscally responsible manner, while being a dutiful champion of the organization’s mission to serve vulnerable and marginalized people, and ensure they live a healthy life with dignity.
“I live by my faith and have taken a vow to care for the poor and the sick, and in my new role as President of Malteser International Americas, I pledge to live by the organizations’ faithful values of caring, accountability, teamwork, and excellence,” said Thomas A. Wessels, President-Elect, Malteser International Americas. “I am honored to use my lifetime of experience to help build greater awareness of the fine work Malteser International does for those affected by poverty, disease, conflict and disaster,” he continued.
The President-Elect will assume his new role on January 1, 2017, when he takes over for retiring President, James F. O’Connor, who – for the last six years in his leadership role – has exhibited a great commitment of coming to the aid of the world’s most vulnerable.
“Jim is a fearless leader who also possesses a heart filled with compassion for his fellow man, especially those who are suffering. He has played an integral role in the success and growth of the organization since its inception. The excellent work that he accomplished during his tenure has brought Malteser International Americas into the hearts and minds of our supporters in the Western Hemisphere,” said Ravi Tripptrap, Executive Director, Malteser International Americas.
“In the six years I have presided over the Board of Directors, I have seen families ripped apart by devastation. Natural and manmade disasters in the Americas, and across the globe, have left so many with despair. Fortunately, our emergency relief efforts at Malteser International Americas, give these survivors hope. That is why I have worked diligently to make sure that vulnerable and marginalized people in forgotten regions in this world get the help they need when they need it,” said James F. O’Connor, President, Malteser International Americas. “Tom, a fellow Knight of the Order, brings a wealth of experience to this position, and I wish him continued success in the years to come.”
This year alone, Malteser International Americas has been at the forefront of tackling some of the greatest challenges facing the Americas:
Implemented immediate relief measures in Haiti following Hurricane Matthew to provide survivors with critical hygiene materials to reduce the risk of another deadly cholera epidemic, and dispensed clean-up kits and aid to restore livelihood
Took action in Colombia to educate and protect pregnant women and their unborn babies from the Zika virus by providing prevention kits to often neglected populations where stagnant water is an ideal breeding ground for mosquitos
Launched a fresh water program in the southwest of Haiti where the worst drought in 35 years has put those already experiencing profound poverty and extreme vulnerability in further jeopardy
Created a new program aimed at reducing maternal and child mortality in remote areas of Colombia by providing those who are at-risk, and have been discriminated against, access to rehabilitated, better-equipped health centers with trained female health care workers
Also newly elected is Edward J. Delaney, KM, of Winchester, Massachusetts. He currently sits as a Director on the Board and he was appointed to Vice President. Mr. Delaney brings to the position entrepreneurial expertise and substantial business experience. He is a Knight of Malta for the Order of Malta, U.S. American Association.
The Malteser International Americas’ Board of Directors is composed of 10 volunteer members representing a variety of personal and professional backgrounds. The board is currently comprised of a team of experienced leaders with combined experience in fundraising, finance, law, corporate governance, education, strategic planning, and senior management.
About Malteser International Americas:
Malteser International Americas is a global humanitarian organization with a mission of supporting the vulnerable and marginalized so that they may live a healthy life with dignity. Through our U.S. headquarters, Malteser International Americas provides immediate disaster response and preparedness as well as vital healthcare and nutrition to vulnerable people in North America, Latin America and the Caribbean. Visit www.orderofmaltarelief.org to learn more.
JERUSALEM, Nov. 25, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — Friends of Zion Heritage Center (FOZHC) – with its campus located in the heart of Jerusalem and consisting of the internationally renowned Friends of Zion Museum visited by over 100,000 guests last year – hosted more than 80 distinguished guests representing more than 30 nations on Wednesday November 23rd, 2016 to mark the commencement of Phase II of its Ambassador Institute development initiative. The Ambassador Institute is focused on combatting anti-Semitism through partnership with the Christian community.
Distinguished guests included Ambassadors, Ministers, Members of the Diplomatic Core, Members of Parliament and other honored guests. The late President Shimon Peres served as International Chair of the Friends of Zion Heritage Center up until the time of his death in September of this year. Diplomats in attendance included representatives from Belgium, Brazil, India, Japan, and Russia. The event took place following the Jerusalem Post’s Diplomatic Summit where Friends of Zion president, Dr. Michael Evans, joined Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a keynote presenter.
H.E. Deborah Lyons, Ambassador of Canada to Israel, reflected, “Tolerance, understanding, dialogue and cooperation are part of our people, the same way our trees and mountains are. We are honored to be a part of an event which promotes these shared core values.”
H.E. Martin Weiss, Ambassador of Austria to Israel, said, “Our people share a long history with the Jewish people, and it is more important now than ever that we stand with Israel and create friends around the world.”
The FOZHC is devoted to the celebration of Christian Zionists from around the world who have energetically worked to protect the Jewish people from persecution and whose efforts were instrumental in the creation and establishment of the State of Israel.
The Friends of Zion Museum is a one-of-a-kind multimedia experience that utilizes state-of-the-art technology, immersive video content, touch screens and 3D displays to commemorate the lives and efforts of 33 individuals including biblical heroes, businessmen, academics and military figures who helped forge the everlasting bond between the Jewish and Christian peoples.
Phase I of the development initiative spanned the last 24 months and included over $50 million in investment into the Heritage Center campus and museum.
Phase II will bring the total investment to more than $100 million and will unite the Friends of Zion Research Institute’s communication center and the Ambassador Institute. Currently Friends of Zion boasts over 13 million fans on social media with over 550,000 joining each week, the majority of whom are millennials. The FOZHC is on track to reach its ambitious goal of accumulating 100 million fans in 5 years.
“We are tremendously honored to bring together such a distinguished list of diplomats, statesmen and other honored guests to celebrate the Friends of Zion movement,” says FOZHC President, Michael Evans. “The Friends of Zion Ambassador Institute is an ambitious plan to unite, mobilize and educate the millions upon millions of Christian Zionists from around the world. Phase II will enable us to continue training tens of thousands of Christian Zionists as ambassadors through their smart phones and on social media, while also leveraging adaptive learning to speak up and stand up for Israel in their own countries, college campuses and in political halls of power.”
FOZHC will have a real time social network communication hub providing rapid response to anti-Semitism online and it will be linked to the thousands of Christian TV and radio stations, print media, churches, and universities worldwide with pro-Israel content packages and video clips going out weekly. FOZHC will also collaborate with one of the world’s leading research companies to create Israel’s first Christian Zionist think tank.
About Friends of Zion – Located in the heart of Jerusalem, the Friends of Zion Heritage Center is dedicated to bringing stories of love and heroism to the world. Magnificently told using ground-breaking technology found nowhere else in the nation, visitors experience the unfolding story as though stepping back in time. Accompanied by a moving original musical score, fantastic surround sound, lighting second-to-none and interactive displays that appear to come to life before your very eyes, the Friends of Zion Museum is a once in a lifetime experience for audiences from around the world. Visitors enter a whole new world, where they meet the biblical figures, academics, businessmen, and military officials who, through their faith, have forged an everlasting bond between the Jewish and Christian peoples.
Dr. Michael D. Evans is an award-winning journalist who has served as a confidant to multiple Prime Ministers of Israel and leaders in the Middle East for more than two decades. He has spoken in thousands of churches and appeared on hundreds of network television and radio shows, including Good Morning America, Crossfire, and Nightline, including multiple appearances on the 700 Club. He appears frequently on Fox News, CNN World News, NBC, ABC, and CBS, and his insightful articles and perspectives on Israel and the Middle East have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Washington Times, Jerusalem Post, and newspapers worldwide. Dr. Mike Evans is considered one of the world’s leading experts on Israel and the Middle East, and he is one of the most sought-after speakers on the subject.
Phyllis Schlafly, attorney, author, activist credited with everything from defeating the Equal Rights Amendment, to spear heading Bary Goldwater’s nomination for president of the United States has died. She was also the founder and president of Eagle Forum the powerful nationwide pro-family advocacy group.
Ed Martin who worked closely with her first broke the news to Eagle Forum‘s supporters around the country by email, just minutes before the news was released to the media. In the group’s official statement Martin wrote ” Today, Phyllis Schlafly passed away in the presence of her family at her home in St. Louis, Missouri.
An iconic American leader whose love for America was surpassed only by her love of God and her family, Phyllis Schlafly, an indomitable pro-family grassroots advocate and organizer, was 92 years old. Mrs. Schlafly was preceded in death by her beloved husband Fred and is survived by six children along with 16 grand and 3 great grandchildren.
Phyllis Schlafly spent an astounding 70 years in public service of her fellow Americans. Her focus from her earliest days until her final ones was protecting the family, which she understood as the building block of life. She recognized America as the greatest political embodiment of those values. From military superiority and defense to immigration and trade; from unborn life to the nuclear family and parenthood, Phyllis Schlafly was a courageous and articulate voice for common sense and traditional values. She authored 27 books and thousands of articles. She spoke tens of thousands of times across the United States.
Her joy in life was evident to all through her smile and wit. Funeral arrangements are pending.”
Tributes from conservative leaders across the country are already flooding in,
Rev. Robert A. Crutchfield, Founder of FaithInspires.Org said this hearing of the news, ” I was still a child when Phyllis Schlafly was already known all over the country for defending traditional family values against those of the popular culture. She has helped define the American Pro-Family Movement for almost 7 decades. Even Imagining the Pro-Family Movement without her helping guide it is near impossible. Her contributions have been incalculable. If we find comfort in anything it is that her leadership and wisdom will remain with us for generations. May God’s comfort and strength be the constant companion of her family, and all who knew her as we travel through our grief. ”
Family Research Council President Tony Perkins released the following statement on the passing of Phyllis Schlafly: “Phyllis Schlafly will be remembered for her courageous leadership in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds. With the political establishment, the media, and academia all arrayed against her, she organized a grassroots movement that not only stopped the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) but became the foundation for the pro-life, pro-family movement we have today.
“I have little doubt that the political and cultural landscape of America today would have long ago been devoid of true conservatism if not for her leadership. She never surrendered her principles and she never gave in to intimidation.
“Her love for God and this country drove her to fight for the Constitutional principles that founded this nation. We honor Phyllis for the lessons that she taught us all. I’m proud to have stood alongside her for faith, family and freedom,” concluded Perkins.
Presidential Candidate Donald Trump was quoted by THE Hill newspaper as saying “Phyllis Schlafly is a conservative icon who led millions to action, reshaped the conservative movement, and fearlessly battled globalism and the ‘kingmakers’ on behalf of America’s workers and families,” Trump said in a statement Monday night.
“I was honored to spend time with her during this campaign as she waged one more great battle for national sovereignty. I was able to speak with her by phone only a few weeks ago, and she sounded as resilient as ever. Our deepest prayers go out to her family and all her loved ones.”
“I am honored that the Board of the World Congress of Families has elected me to serve as its president, and I look forward to continuing to work to advance the pro-family movement in the US and around the world,” Brown said. “Preserving and promoting the natural family as the core institution of society is an essential task if we are to build strong, stable, healthy communities.”
The World Congress of Families (WCF) is anchored in truths enshrined in the United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which provides that, “Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion” (article 18), and that, “The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State” (article 16(3)). WCF focuses on providing that protection to which the natural family is entitled, while also protecting the right to freedom of conscience and religion. WCF upholds the rule of law, condemns violence, and respects the dignity and rights of all.
“In recent years, secular leaders around the world have become obsessed with advancing so-called ‘alternative’ family structures. But there is no family structure more valuable and important to children and civilization as a whole than that of a married father and mother raising the children born of their union in an intact and loving family,” Brown said. “The natural family produces the best outcomes for society – promoting child health and well-being, encouraging marital happiness, enhancing economic prosperity, reducing delinquency and criminality, enhancing educational attainment, promoting spiritual growth, and securing liberty and human dignity. I look forward to contributing to WCF’s work to develop and advance pro-family policies around the world.”
The mission of the World Congress of Families is to help secure the foundations of society by uniting and empowering leaders worldwide to respect, protect, and defend:
- the natural family founded on marriage between a man and a woman;
- parental rights and the welfare of children, including their need for both a mother and a father;
- the dignity and sanctity of all human life from conception; and
- freedom of speech, religion, and conscience in an atmosphere of respect for all.
Barna recently did a similar study in their case focused on Church planters. They came to many of the same conclusions. Pastoral stress is a real issue, that we in the church world will have to develop solid practical answers to. The answers we have obviously aren’t working like we need them to. -Pastor Crutchfield
WASHINGTON, April 28, 2016 /Christian Newswire/ — Research released from the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) this week shows that the majority of evangelical pastors in the United States serve in small churches with significant personal financial challenges. Pastors also report that they are not familiar with resources to help them and do not confide in anyone outside their household about financial stress.
“The vast majority of pastors do not have their own radio or TV show, robust church staff, or megachurch attendance,” said Leith Anderson, NAE president. “Rather they faithfully serve in small churches and face financial challenges stemming from student debt, low salaries and medical expenses. And sadly, they often feel they have no one to turn to for help.”
The poll, conducted by Grey Matter Research in July 2015, found that of the 4,249 pastors surveyed 80 percent serve in congregations with fewer than 200 people, and 55 percent have fewer than 100 people in their church. Half of the pastors serve in churches with annual budgets under $125,000 that must cover the cost of the church facilities, programs and pastor/staff payroll. Fifty percent of pastors receive less than $50,000 per year in compensation with 30 percent having student loan debt averaging $36,000.
Many pastors also struggle to secure long-term financial stability. Thirty-three percent have under $10,000 in retirement funds. Twenty-nine percent have $0 in personal savings.
Over 85 percent of pastors said they did not receive financial training from their seminary. Many pastors (37 percent) are not familiar with what resources their denomination offers for personal finances. Over a third of pastors said they have no one outside their household in whom they can confide about the things that stress them financially.
This spring, with support from Lilly Endowment Inc., the NAE launched a multiyear initiative to address economic challenges facing pastors. The initiative will focus on connecting and resourcing denominations, churches and pastors in the area of pastor finances.
Download the full report at NAE.net/pastorresearch.
The mission of the National Association of Evangelicals is to honor God by connecting and representing evangelical Christians. The NAE includes more than 45,000 churches from nearly 40 denominations and serves a constituency of millions. Founded in 1942, the NAE is currently led by President Leith Anderson.
Follow the NAE at NAE.net.
PASADENA, Calif., and ROTTERDAM, Netherlands, April 21, 2016 /Christian Newswire/ — The Ark of Noah Foundation in Pasadena has entered into a strategic collaboration with the owner of the full size replica of the Ark of Noah to move the Ark to the cities of Fortaleza and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Noah’s Ark will be in Fortaleza for the 2016 Olympic Games and Rio de Janeiro for the Paralympic summer games. The Ark is a massive replica that is interactive, informative, cultural Biblical event center. Noah’s Ark provides a Judeo-Christian, Bible based experience for young and old.
Once in Brazil the Ark will be using techniques that include virtual and augmented reality to tell original different biblical themes and stories in an interactive and challenging way. Brazil has a total population of over 190 million people who are 28% Protestant and 60% Catholic.
The builder of the Ark, Johan Huibers, is extremely excited to see that one of his visions gets realized. In his autobiography “The Unsinkable Dream” the builder speaks about his dream in which he sees the “Ark” in the port of Rio de Janeiro.
The Ark of Noah Foundation together with its partners are actively involved in financing the entire project. The US crowd funding campaign starts now, private investors and international donors will be approached shortly as well.
Noah’s Ark opened its doors in July 2012 for the general public and has been on display for four years already. This construction has the real dimensions of the Ark mentioned in the Bible; about 95 feet wide, 75.5 feet high and 410 feet long and weighs about 2500 tons.
It is envisioned to use the proceeds of the use of the Ark of Noah in Brazil to build Ark of Hope centers throughout the country. These centers will provide social, educational and practical support to the underprivileged people in Brazil.
MERCER ISLAND, Wash., Jan. 26, 2016 /Christian Newswire/ — Healthy, flourishing workplace culture makes for increasingly effective organizations.
That’s the upside for 62 faith-based organizations across the U.S., Canada and Australia, which have just been honored as Certified Best Christian Workplaces by the Best Christian Workplaces Institute (BCWI).
BCWI’s FLOURISH Model measures eight essential factors of a thriving, healthy culture: fantastic teams, life-giving work, outstanding talent, uplifting growth, rewarding compensation, inspirational leadership, sustainable strategy and healthy communication.
The Certified status reflects a “healthy-to-flourishing” culture, meeting predetermined standards of excellence on each of these eight factors. BCWI pioneered and perfected the anonymous, online employee survey instrument that compiles and calibrates individuals’ responses.
“Attaining BCWI Certification is not easy,” said BCWI President Al Lopus. “About half of the organizations we survey achieve Certification, and many organizations survey multiple years before receiving this distinction.”
Since 2003, BCWI has served more than 700 faith-based organizations throughout North America and beyond.
The organizations Certified between July 1, 2015 and January 20, 2016 are:
Bethlehem Baptist Church – Minneapolis, MN
Church of the King – Mandeville, LA
Community Christian Church – Naperville, IL
Cornwall Church – Bellingham, WA
Cross Point Church – Nashville, TN
Crossroads Christian Church – Evansville, IN
Eastminster Presbyterian Church – Wichita, KS
Experience Life Church – Lubbock, TX
First Free Church – Onalaska, WI
Floris United Methodist Church – Herndon, VA
Gateway Church – Southlake, TX
Harvest Church – Billings, MT
Legacy Christian Church – Overland Park, KS
Mountain Christian Church – Joppa, MD
Park Community Church – Chicago, IL
Redeemer Lutheran Church – Fort Collins, CO
River Pointe Church – Richmond, TX
Valley Ranch Baptist Church – Coppell, TX
Vineyard Cincinnati – Cincinnati, OH
The Wesleyan Church – Fishers, IN
PARACHURCH AND MISSIONS
Apartment Life – Euless, TX
Care Net – Lansdowne, VA
Christian Veterinary Mission – Seattle, WA
Compassion Canada – London, ON, Canada
CRISTA Ministries – Seattle, WA
English Language Institute/China – Fort Collins, CO
The Gideons International – Nashville, TN
Joni and Friends – Agoura Hills, CA
Kids Around the World – Rockford, IL
Miracle Hill Ministries – Greenville, SC
Novo Ministries – Oklahoma City, OK
Reasons to Believe – Covina, CA
Vision House – Renton, WA
Water Mission (formerly Water Missions International) – Charleston, SC
Willow Creek Association – South Barrington, IL
World Concern – Seattle, WA
WorldServe Ministries (Canada) – Surrey, BC, Canada
Bethlehem College & Seminary – Minneapolis, MN
College of Biblical Studies-Houston – Houston, TX
Crossroads Bible College – Indianapolis, IN
Grace School of Theology – The Woodlands, TX
Olivet Nazarene University – Bourbonnais, IL
Briarcrest Christian School – Memphis, TN
College Heights Christian School – Joplin, MO
King’s Schools – Seattle, WA
Lionheart Children’s Academy – Euless, TX
Seattle Urban Academy – Seattle, WA
Toledo Christian Schools – Toledo, OH
Valley Christian Schools – Cerritos, CA
CAMPS AND CONFERENCE CENTERS
CRISTA Camps – Seattle, WA
WinShape Retreat – Mount Berry, GA
CRISTA Media – Seattle, WA
Jewish Voice Ministries International – Phoenix, AZ
KSBJ – Humble, TX
LightMelbourne – Mitcham, VIC, Australia
PRODUCTS & SERVICES
Association for Biblical Higher Education (ABHE) – Orlando, FL
CapinCrouse LLP – Greenwood, IN
Christian Family Care – Phoenix, AZ
Classical Conversations – West End, NC
Garland Heart – Plano, TX
Lead Like Jesus – Spartanburg, SC
Samaritan Ministries International – Peoria, IL
About Best Christian Workplaces Institute
The Best Christian Workplaces Institute is an international non-profit, research-based, organizational development and human resources consulting firm, with head offices in Mercer Island, Washington. Their vision is to see Christian workplaces set the standard as the best, most effective places to work in the world. Learn more at www.bcwinstitute.org. Find weekly success stories at blog.bcwinstitute.org and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/bestchristianworkplacesinstitute.
HUME, Calif., Aug. 19, 2015 /Christian Newswire/ — An uncontained forest fire threatens Hume Lake Christian Camps, located in the Sequoia National Forest. The Hume Community is asking Christians around the world to pray for the protection of the camp and the continued safety of all camp staff and firefighting personnel.
“We are trusting God, and we are asking you to pray. Please help us mobilize the Christian community around the country to pray,” says Dathan Brown, Executive Director.
Hume Lake Christian Camps is a year-round youth camp and adult retreat center providing epic, high-energy, life-changing programs for churches, schools, teams and groups. Since 1946, more than one million campers have gone through this ministry and experienced the love and power of a life lived in Christ through recreation, music and speaking.
The Rough Fire began with a lightning strike on July 31, 2015 and now encompasses over 30,900 acres. It has crossed the King’s River and has progressed within miles of the homes and ministry buildings of the camp. All non-essential personnel have been evacuated successfully. About 30 full-time staff remain to help keep the utilities, kitchen and other infrastructure running for the firefighting Command Post now situated on the camp grounds.
At 7:30 Wednesday the 19th Hume Lake Christian Camps provided the following update,
Wednesday, August 19, 2015 – 7:30pm
As the fire advanced towards Hume today, we were asked to evacuate the remaining staff at 4:30pm today. As of 6:00pm, all remaining support staff have left Hume Lake. Our fire team, a core utilities team, and over 400 firefighters remain to defend structures. For more information, watch this video from our Executive Director. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for more updates.