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Modern-Day Isrealites: Texas campers build a pyramid


First-grader Gordyn Guidry places a brick on a pyramid at the annual “Camp Agape” at the Brentwood Oaks church in Austin, Texas. With the theme “I Am,” the recent day camp served 150 children and focused on God calling Moses to lead the Israelites out of Egypt. “We had camels come visit,” children’s ministry coordinator Jackie Boyd said. “We made bricks like the Israelites made while in slavery.”
ALABAMA

MONTGOMERY — For nine years in a row, the Kids B.L.A.S.T. summer youth program at the Landmark church has provided a sit-down lunch for dozens of local
sanitation workers. About two dozen workers attended the recent event.
“We’re serving the sanitation workers food for all they do for us,” Ashleann Dapprich, 11, told the Montgomery Advertiser.

ARIZONA

CHANDLER — The call came on a recent Tuesday: A man admitted into a hospice program and not expected to live through the night wanted to be baptized.
Then the question became: Where to baptize him?
“One of the relatives said, ‘I have a truck and a tarp out there,’” said Keith Shepherd, minister of the Alma School Road church. “After talking and the hospice staff saying, ‘We have a hose, and we can heat some water,’ this is the plan we decided on.”
Coy Matthews was baptized in the truck on Tuesday night. He died the following Thursday morning.
“The next Sunday, I preached on procrastination,” Shepherd wrote in an e-mail. “Coy almost put this off too long.
“One relative said, ‘I have waited 40 years to see this happen.’”
IOWA

CEDAR RAPIDS — The Central church, Churches of Christ Disaster Relief Effort and Churches of Christ Disaster Response Team helped with relief efforts after recent flooding consumed the city.
At least three families at the Central church lost their homes, while several others reported significant damage. One church family lost a business — an auto repair shop that opened 50 years ago.
“You feel deeply for all these people,” said Kim Abrams, the church’s longtime secretary. “People at our church, people in our community … everyone has been touched on some level.”
LOUISIANA

NEW ORLEANS — For the first time since Hurricane Katrina ravaged the city three years ago, the Carrollton Avenue church offered its annual summer arts and drama camp for neighborhood children.
Nearly 50 campers practiced each day to bring the story of David and Goliath to life, learning lines, songs and movements, minister Kirk Garrison said.
“The highlight of the camp was the performance for the children’s families and the Carrollton congregation, complete with singing sheep and soldiers,” Garrison said.

OREGON

SALEM — The Soma church, an effort of the Kairos church-planting ministry, drew 46 people to its inaugural service recently, minister Dwayne Hilty said.
The church began mission work in the area earlier this year and plans to “launch” officially Oct. 5.
Until then, “our plan is to have a monthly worship service (there) as we connect the unchurched people we are working with to be a part of Soma (Greek word for ‘body’),” Hilty said.
TENNESSEE

ALTAMONT — The Treasure of Truth, a 10-year-old program of teaching the world by shortwave radio, broadcasts six hours a day, with lessons in English and French and other languages expected to be added.
The frequency is 5.050 from 6 p.m. to midnight Eastern Time.
“Help is constantly needed in a program like this — even though the costs are minimal — for the outreach and the response,” minister Joe Gray said. “Letters have been received from over 50 countries on every continent.”
For more information, write to: Treasure of Truth, P.O. Box 156, Altamont, TN 37301.
CLARKSVILLE — These days, Valice Elliott finds it easier to maneuver her husband Emmett’s wheelchair into their home.
The Madison Street church’s community outreach ministry installed a new deck and wheelchair ramp. Working with a community housing and urban development agency, church volunteers have completed 17 ramps during the past two years, The Leaf-Chronicle reported.
Member Granville Dean said church volunteers typically can build a small deck and ramp in about six hours.
VIRGINIA

RICHMOND — Volunteers at the Three Chopt church wanted to “do something to improve the daily life of a family that really needs it,” member Annette Bowen said. So, they decided to give an “Extreme
Makeover”-style renovation to Tanisha Hamlin and her six children, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported.
Volunteers from the church scrubbed and painted the Hamlins’ home and restocked it with everything from new furniture to plenty of food. Meanwhile, the family stayed in a hotel, ate in restaurants and enjoyed movies and other entertainment, the newspaper said.
“It’s exciting,” Hamlin said. “This is the first time someone is giving me something.”

Filed under: National Staff Reports

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