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Partners: Heart surgery and a playoff win, dress for success and equipping for evangelism

FEATURED PHOTO (above) — Randolph Wilkerson, left, a student at Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tenn., helps an eighth-grader at Music City’s Head Middle Magnet School adjust his new necktie. Lipscomb’s Collegiate 100 chapter, including student Kindrick McLemore, center, set a goal of collecting 150 ties for the middle school boys. But the group of primarily African-American students exceeded expectations with 464 ties.


AUSTIN, Texas  —  Stan Caffey didn’t let open-heart surgery keep him from coaching the Brentwood Christian School football team.

Stan and Becky Lynn Caffey

Caffey called plays from his hospital bed for two games, then returned to the sidelines for the Bears’ first-ever playoff win, the Austin American-Statesman reported.

“His story has been a real inspiration here,” school President Jay Burcham told The Christian Chronicle.

Caffey launched the football program at Brentwood Christian in 2015 after Joe Farmer, an avid football fan and elder of the Brentwood Oaks Church of Christ, told him about the opening.

“He has our boys believing in themselves, and many of these boys had never played football before three years ago,” said Burcham, whose school has nearly 700 students. “What has been really special is that we have had in the range of 2,000 people at our home games.”



STRAFFORD, Mo. — Successes of children in Fair Haven’s care are easy to identify: The baptisms. The participation in Leadership Training for Christ and Happy Hollow Bible Belt. The school honor roll mentions.

At the same time, the 53-year-old ministry faces challenges as it works to provide homes for boys and girls, executive director Barney Crawford wrote in a recent newsletter.

“Because of the continuous financial challenges facing Fair Haven, we have had to become innovative in generating funds for this ministry,” Crawford wrote. “Many churches who were once faithful supporters of Fair Haven have diminished or closed their doors. A number of our loyal supporters have passed on to await their eternal reward.”

A board comprised of the elders of the Water Mill Church of Christ in Springfield oversees Fair Haven.



HUNTSVILLE, Ala.  —  A mass shooting preparedness seminar at Faulkner’s Huntsville campus drew about 50 participants from area Churches of Christ, organizers said.

The university offered the recent seminar in response to the Nov. 5 attack that claimed 26 lives at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, Texas.

The event brought together church staff members and law enforcement officers to prepare crisis plans, Faulkner Police Chief Everette Johnson said. Robert Thetford, a retired FBI agent, led the seminar.

Topics included legal aspects of protection, active shooter incidents, situational awareness, security considerations, emergency protocols and threat indicators.


TERRELL, Texas  —  The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools has determined that Southwestern Christian College is in total compliance with governing rules and policies, the college announced.

The confirmation came after a review of Southwestern’s institutional effectiveness and definition of credit hour. Both had been highlighted as problematic, and warnings were issued, officials noted.

Faculty members worked hard to secure full compliance with corrections that now allow Southwestern to concentrate more on reaffirmation of accreditation, a news release said.

“I’m very happy,” President E.D. Seamster Jr. said of the lifted sanctions. “This is the best academic news I’ve had since becoming president.”



HERNANDO, Miss. — Specialized training in person-to-person evangelism is the focus of Fishers of Men. In 2017, the ministry equipped nearly 700 Christians to share the Gospel, director W. Timothy Wilkes Sr. said.

Filed under: Partners Top Stories

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