On Saturday, September 26th, Typhoon Ondoy (international name: Ketsana) hit the Philippines, causing massive devastation, flooding and deaths.  In a matter of hours, a month’s worth of rain fell on the capital city of Manila, submerging 80% of the city under water.  Reports of the number of displaced citizens range from 60,000 to 500,000.  At least 140 people have been killed, and relief workers concede that they are overwhelmed by the scale of the ongoing flooding.

If you’d like to provide support for rescue, recovery and restoration efforts, you may do so via any of the following organizations:

“Half the Sky”

September 28, 2009

Half the Skyis humbly described by its authors, Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn, as a book “about women around the world,” but it is so much more than that.  Kristof (a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist with The New York Times) and WuDunn are a husband-and-wife team who have compiled a compelling volume, telling the stories of women throughout our globe who suffer from three major abuses: sex trafficking / forced prostitution, gender-based violence (such as honour killings and mass rape), and maternal mortality (which claims 1 woman a minute!).

What began as a book has turned into a movement to “emancipate women and fight global poverty by unlocking women’s power as economic catalysts.”  (Kristof and WuDunn go so far as to propose that the liberation of women could help solve many of the world’s problems, from child mortality to terrorism.)  Such a goal finds echoes in the mission & philosophy of our partner Justice Ventures International (JVI) and Freeset Bags, one of the Indian marketplace initiatives supported by JVI.

In two Sundays, we’ll hear from Kerry Hilton, follower of Christ and founder of Freeset Bags, as he shares about the Indian women rescued from prostitution and poverty as they come to work with Freeset.  Until then, check out “Half the Sky,” now available in bookstores and online.

“A Huge Hello” From NHC!

September 22, 2009

What happiness to receive a note from our sister church NHC (in Kremenchug, UA) this morning!  Here’s the update from our brothers & sisters overseas …

News of «New Hope» (September 2009)

Hello Dear Sister Church New Hope, of the city of New York!

We want to share with your our latest news, the joys and blessings we’ve experienced these last months. We often remember the marvelous time we spent together serving God at the camp and ministering to our city. It was magnificent.  I hope that you also feel this way.

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Please join us for:

“Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs”
in downtown White Plains
Friday, October 2nd

Please RSVP with Will L. or John H. A follow-up email will be sent to only those responding.

The Veritas Forum is back at Columbia University for a few days this month, seeking to “explore the possibility of truth, beauty and goodness in every aspect of our academic and personal lives.”  The Forum is “inspired by the idea that Jesus Christ has something relevant to offer our modern university in its search for knowledge, truth and significance.”

Veritas is at Columbia University from September 21 – 23, 2009 (this Monday – Wednesday); check out the speaker / seminar / concert schedule after the jump …

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With love, from JenK. in Longmeadow …

At this year’s Ted Talks, Alain de Botton spoke to some of the world’s movers and shakers, giving a talk called, “A Kinder, Gentler Philosophy of Success.”

In it, he argues that in order to avoid anxiety about whether or not we are successful people, we must reconsider our ideas of success, rather than giving up on the idea of success altogether. To do so, we must “make sure that [our ideas about success] are our own . . . that we are truly the authors of our own ambition.” Read the rest of this entry »

Hello From Longmeadow!

September 10, 2009

A greeting and an idea from Jen K. …

Hello from Longmeadow, MA!

Are you having a baby soon, but you already have all the stuff you need? Are you having a birthday soon, but your life is filled with so much that you really can’t think of anything that you want or need? Are you getting married and thinking that perhaps you don’t need the 8th – 14th place setting in your china set? Is your kid having yet another birthday that’s only going to result in a whole lot of clothes and toys that s/he doesn’t really need?

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