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Mission Yearbook

Living with the mind of Christ

It’s funny how things that you experienced as a young person — that didn’t seem so important at the time — pop up in your later years and remind you of the kind of person you are called to be. So it is that this passage from Paul’s advice to the Philippian Christians has come flooding back to me as I was reflecting on the terrible conflict that continues to poison our society, both in our country and around the world.

‘If it matters to Jesus, it should matter to us’

Wanting to impress on the preachers in his Zoom audience the importance of garnering helpful listener feedback following their sermons, the Rev. Dr. Chip Hardwick recently offered up the words of a very popular preacher from back in the day: Jesus himself.

$50 and a challenge

Since the coronavirus pandemic hit in the spring of 2020, many churches’ weekly offering figures are still not matching what they were two years ago. This shortfall has caused congregations to scale back many of their programs and, even worse, forced them to lay off staff. Westminster Presbyterian Church in Lincoln, Nebraska, though, is not one of those congregations. It has been experiencing sustained giving since the pandemic hit, so much so that it has been able to give back to its worshipers so that they can in turn also give back to the people and organizations in their community that need financial assistance.

‘It made me want to dance’

Since arriving in Houston from Ghana, pastor Ebenezer Boateng has persevered through many ups and downs. But finally, the new worshiping community he founded, the Presbyterian Church of the Redeemer, officially became a chartered congregation in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

‘Our earnest desire is that you come and visit’

When individuals and small groups are ready once again to travel to places like Guatemala to learn about and walk alongside that nation’s welcoming people, CEDEPCA, the Protestant Center for Pastoral Studies in Central America, is ready to handle all the details and deepen visitors’ experience.

Discovering a pandemic silver lining

While Guatemala was struggling with the global pandemic, mission co-workers Eric and Betsey Moe were working remotely from Spokane, Washington.

No more unread emails

Communicating with the congregation is one of the most important things we do. Doing it effectively increases awareness and engagement. For most organizations, email remains a primary vehicle for communicating en masse. It is gradually being supplanted by text messaging, but judging by the number of emails I receive, it remains the medium of choice. The problem, though, is that most emails are ignored without ever being opened. I will discuss a couple of the most important factors that will determine whether a recipient decides to open your email.

Minute for Mission: National Day of Awareness & Action for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls and Two-Spirit People

Indigenous communities have been struck by the epidemic of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls and Two-Spirit people (MMIW) for decades. This epidemic is a systemic failure where Indigenous women are going missing and being murdered at alarmingly high rates with minimal justice. Within the past several years, the MMIW movement has brought awareness of this violence to the public’s attention. Still, there is much work to be done.

Praying for others

I have never used the praying hands emoji as much as I have the past two years. I serve as a chaplain in a city trauma center, so I pray a lot. But the COVID-19 pandemic provoked more need for prayer than I have ever felt before; thus, the use of the praying hands emoji increased as the pandemic continued.