Wednesday, August 20, 2014Download All Stories
Ukraine's cry for help & hope stirs U.S. churches to pray, go
NEW ALBANY, Ind. (BP) -- When Becky Dorman sees Ukraine in the news -- the violence, the bombs, the downed aircraft -- she thinks of Marina.
Dorman, a member at Graceland Baptist Church in New Albany, Ind., met the young Ukrainian woman in 2009 when Dorman's mission team traveled to Ukraine. Marina was a translator for the team.
"I continue to pray for her, especially for her safety," Dorman said. "Having never been to Ukraine before, she really took my heart."
A number of churches in the United States have postponed or canceled their plans to do ministry in Ukraine this year because of the unrest. But Christian workers in that region of the world say there is still much that churches "back home" in the United States can do.
Tim Johnson,* an IMB representative in Ukraine, said the U.S. church has a "great role" in reaching out to Ukraine during these difficult times by creating awareness, continuing to pray and being a part of outreach efforts.
"Those are great ways for the church to continue to support our Ukrainian brothers and sisters," he said.
"It's just hard when you know that there's church-planting efforts going on, there's desire to see new work take place, but at the same time there's that cloud of fear that hangs in the air," he said. "So we pray for that to dissipate and that we could have a chance to move forward with clear skies."
Marina's home is in the Luhansk region, a section of eastern Ukraine torn by conflict between pro-Russian separatists and the Ukrainian army. Her home couldn't have been farther away from war -- or from Dorman's radar -- a few years ago.
"I remember hearing our pastor say from the pulpit that we needed to have a people group on our heart, and I remember thinking that I didn't even know what a people group was," Dorman, who serves as worship ministry administrative assistant at Graceland Baptist Church, said.
Then Dorman's daughter, a junior in college, announced she was going to Ukraine to serve for a summer.
Suddenly the needs in Ukraine came to life for Dorman.
"I thought, 'You know what? I'll have Ukrainians in my heart," she said.
Since Dorman's initial trip to Ukraine in 2009 she has been twice more. The church partners with Joel*, a former worship pastor of Graceland Baptist. He is co-director of the church-planting program at Kiev Theological Seminary. He served 35 years as worship pastor at Graceland Baptist before he and his wife Mary Ellen* began work with the International Mission Board in Ukraine in 2003.
Since then, he's partnered with Graceland Baptist to link them with the church planters he trains. Read More
Tilt toward gay marriage hits hiccup"We contend for marriage because marriage was not created by a state or a court."WASHINGTON (BP) -- Southern Baptist public policy specialists have welcomed a rare court decision out of step with the same-sex marriage juggernaut while reaffirming the need for an ongoing defense of the God-ordained institution. Read More
-- Russell D. Moore
BACK TO SCHOOL: Prep students for missionsNASHVILLE (BP) -- The beginning of the school year often comes with a variety of emotions from parents. There may be excitement, apprehension, fear, nervousness, or even joy at the reality that the kids won't be home during the daytime hours anymore. If your student is in one of those big transition years -- entering junior high or high school, or beginning their senior year -- you're probably working through all of those emotions at the same time. Read More
BACK TO SCHOOL: Five tips for parentsNASHVILLE (BP) -- Maybe my kids are weird, but I have been surprised to learn they can't wait to start school. In fact, as soon as school ended back in June, they were already talking about the teachers they would have in the upcoming year and the activities in which they would participate. I have kids in all age groups: elementary, pre-teen, and teenagers. They all look forward to going back. Read More
Flooding, other challenges draw Baptist reliefWARREN, Mich. (BP) -- Massive flooding in Michigan affecting tens of thousands of homes and businesses has opened the door for ministry by Southern Baptist Disaster Relief (SBDR) volunteers. Read More
2nd VIEW: In world missions, pastor says, 'Don't despise small beginnings'HERNDON, Va. (BP) -- Pastor James Graham of Mount Pleasant Baptist Church and his wife Gloria were heading home one May Sunday when they heard on the radio the latest news of more than 200 kidnapped Nigerian schoolgirls. Read More
FIRST-PERSON: Adam's sin endures in Ferguson
Seminary professor Jarvis Williams sees a fundamental issue at the root of the turbulence in Ferguson, Mo. -- alienation from God stemming man’s fall from grace in the Garden of Eden. “[E]very human heart (regardless of race) rebels against God and against his fellow man,” Williams writes. Read More
FROM THE SEMINARIES: SBTS (Donor gives $1M for church revitalization), NOBTS (religious liberty conference)
EDITOR'S NOTE: "From the Seminaries" includes news releases of interest from Southern Baptist seminaries.
Today's From the Seminaries includes items from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.
Businessman-revivalist gives $1M for church revitalization
By James A. Smith Sr.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (SBTS) -- Harold Mathena has "dabbled" in business throughout his life. For him, business has always been secondary to his desire to serve t... Read More