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Membership  Resources  Events  Certification  Nat'l Conference  Chapters  Jobs  Teleweb Dec. 2, 2010


Effort to repeal unpopular 1099 filing rule fails in Senate
CNN    Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Senate failed Monday night to pass two measures that would have repealed a law that businesses big and small say will cost jobs. Starting in 2012, businesses will be required to issue 1099 tax forms not only to contracted workers (as they already do) but also to any individual or corporation from which they buy more than $600 in goods or services in a year. The provision was adopted in March as part of the massive health care reform law. More

God knows, we lie about going to church
USA Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Did you attend a worship service last weekend? Really? God knows if you're telling the truth -- and so, in a way, does Philip Brenner, University of Michigan research fellow with the Institute for Social Research. Brenner plowed through 400 surveys and time diaries across four decades with three quarters of a million respondents in 13 nations to find that Americans exaggerate their church attendance more than anyone else. More

Using Outreach Awareness To Grow The Church
The best way to reach new people is through engaging, effective outreach programs. Whether it’s more efficient use of the church Web site or becoming a member of the local Chamber of Commerce, the ACS ministry guide Going Outside the Church Walls offers great advice on outreach awareness methods. more


Obama clarifies religious liberty protections, strengthens foundation of faith-based policy
The Huffington Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
It was not fast and it did not finish the job, but the Obama administration's executive order clarifying policies on government partnerships with faith-based organizations is important. Largely based on recommendations of his Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, the changes will improve social services delivery and protection for religious liberty. Everyone who respects the First Amendment's religious liberty protections should be thankful for this development. More

Alternative worship services extend welcome to special-needs children and their parents
Episcopal News Service    Share    Share on
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Crucifer Scott Collins stood at the front of St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Harrington Park, N.J., and lifted high his cross. "Who's ready for a cross parade?" he asked. About a dozen children and adults holding small wooden crosses lined up behind him, waving blue pom-poms and shaking noisemakers as they marched twice around the nave before returning to their seats. A few minutes and a brief Scripture lesson later, they left the pews again, gathering in the center aisle to grasp a "prayer rope" and recite, or listen to, the Lord's Prayer. After a gluten-free Communion, congregants ended the 30-minute service as they began, parading behind the cross before turning in their bells and plastic clackers and heading to the parish hall for snacks, children's videos and adult conversation. It's not your typical Episcopal Eucharist. But it is part of a growing trend of alternative worship services geared to special-needs, and particularly autistic, children. More

Poll: 'Very religious' Americans have better emotional health
The Christian Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Depression and negative emotions are less common among "very religious" Americans than among the nonreligious, a poll reveals. Gallup's new report on Tuesday shows that 15.6 percent of American adults who say religion is an important part of daily life and who attend a church, synagogue or mosque at least every week or almost every week have been diagnosed with depression in their lifetime. Meanwhile, 18.7 nonreligious Americans have been diagnosed. Among "moderately religious" adults, 20.4 percent reported having been diagnosed with depression. More



Faith-based fundraisers go with creative strategies
USA Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
In times of crisis and natural disasters, many are eager to donate. But fundraising for chronic diseases and global troubles such as hunger or a lack of clean water can be more of a challenge. So faith-based groups have gotten creative. They use ingenuity and strategies true to religious teachings to reel in first-time givers and conquer giving fatigue in regular donors by linking up to holy days and life cycle celebrations. Here's a look at three groups that make giving easy, faithful — and joyful. More

3 ministry tips to learn from 140 characters or less
Resonate or Die    Share    Share on
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If you live in the world of social media, Twitter-world specifically, you know the importance of 140 characters. In that span, you must communicate your message to your audience in such a way that either shares a brief headline, status or intriguing hint of more to come. For some, Twitter has become a method to share news, keep followers informed and even a marketing teaser of future events. But the ability to communicate in this manner has required a learning curve for some organizations. 140 characters (including spaces) is the limit for every post. No exceptions. So tweets must be intentional. After all, once you share a thought in this world, there is no “undo.” Ministries could learn a thing or two from this concept. More
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Focus on the Family Helps Families Thrive with Healthy Indoor Soft Play Area

“Our main goal is to help families thrive,” says Diane Ingolia, Hospitality Specialist on the organization’s Training and Knowledge Management Team. “We provide a safe and friendly place where families can bring their children and they know it’s not going to cost them anything to play.” READ MORE
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No marriage left behind: Staying connected to your congregation
Crosswalk    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
One of the pastor's most important roles is making sure there is no marriage left behind. You want to ensure that every couple is connected, not only to God, but to you as well as caring and concerned people within your congregation. This task is often too much to ask of any one person or even staff of people. Couples get lost in the shuffle. Statistics tell us that many couples experience a marriage crisis, separate and sometimes even divorce without anyone knowing. They quietly drop out of their caring congregation often never to be seen again. With the demands of marriage and the challenges of staying connected, couples slip through the cracks—and this is something we want to change. More

The 12 days of Christ-must!
Church Central    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Christ's redeeming love has transformed our lives, but that fact might not be obvious in our daily personal worship. We're fairly good with dietary supplements, but tend to postpone a healthy worship relationship with the One who has saved us from damaging and thoughtless self-worship. The author of this article writes, “I'm going to celebrate Christmas by following a deliberate plan for 12 days before and 12 days after Christmas and then repeat it every 12days until I stop having Christmases!” Here’s his plan. More

Celebrating Christmas Sunday-school style
LifeWay    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
There are many ways that a Sunday School class can celebrate Christmas together. Depending on your group's size and age range, you have the freedom to plan and coordinate activities that will be fun and meaningful for everyone. Times of fellowship and festivities are always favorites. The provide a break from the routine of class meetings and study time, and help members form closer bonds with each other. But don't forget that combining Christmas gatherings with outreach or service opportunities can give your Sunday School ministry the satisfaction of doing good things in Jesus' name. More

Keeping projects safe
Building for Ministry    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Churches have ongoing maintenance needs and also engage in a wide range of construction projects. Whether it’s a cleanup day, building new facilities, remodeling old ones, working on a house for Habitat for Humanity, or repairing homes for the poor, church members and volunteers are active in maintenance and construction. Some custodians and members who work on these projects are expert carpenters, plumbers, and electricians. Many, though, are amateurs who rarely use circular saws, air powered nail guns, or other power equipment. The mix of inexperience, limited supervision, and power equipment poses real hazards. As a result, serious accidents regularly occur in ongoing maintenance and construction projects. More

Increase your church's donations with online giving

Online giving helps people give more and give more consistently to your church. Learn about the five ways that TransactU™ can help increase your church’s overall giving.
MORE


West Virginia church meets turkey drive goal in 10 minutes
Baptist Press    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A church in Martinsburg, W.Va., multiplied five-fold its goal for a Thanksgiving turkey giveaway this year -- and saw that goal met in the first 10 minutes. The Church at Martinsburg teamed up for the effort with Loaves and Fishes, a local interdenominational ministry, and wound up exceeding their multiplied goal by 50 percent -- receiving more than seven times the number of turkeys they had aimed for the previous year. In 2009, a goal of 40 turkeys was set for the church's first "Operation Thanks" initiative, and more than 100 turkeys were collected that year. The 2010 goal of 200 turkeys was met within 10 minutes after the collection drive opened. By the end of the hour-long event, 305 turkeys had been donated. More

Experts say financial decisions have moral implications
Associated Baptist Press    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Experts in ethics and economics say Christians need to examine their own consciences and views of what practices they believe comport with their understanding of faith to build an ethical framework to factor those values into their economic decisions. And while the complexities of the global marketplace can make understanding the implications of individual economic decisions a daunting task, resources are available to Christians who want to understand their world better. More

Prison ministry: Spiritual revival happening in women's facilities
The Christian Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
For unexplainable reasons, other than the Holy Spirit, women inmates are attending Bible meetings and coming to Christ like never before, a prison ministry reported. In the past, seven to ten percent of the inmates at a facility would attend the meetings, said Annie Goebel, co-founder of Daughters of Destiny. Now, the ministry is seeing anywhere from 30 to 90 percent of the inmates attending the gathering. This past year alone, more than 20,000 inmates attended the ministry’s evangelism events with nearly 7,500 making decisions for Christ. More


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