Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Feeding the Homeless on Fifth Sundays
January 31, 2012

Every fifth Sunday of the month, Bob Jensen's small group teams up with Eric Anderson's small group to feed the homeless at the Street Life ministry at His Place Ministries in downtown Melbourne.

There are about 120 homeless people who come to His Place for a hot meal every Sunday.  This is a great way to serve the "least and the lost" and build relationships with people who need encouragement.

If you or your small group is interested in serving with this ministry, go to www.covenantpalmbay.org/streetlife.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Pregnancy Resources Education Program (PREP)
January 24, 2012

Pregnancy Resources provides classes to help support our clients’ life-giving decisions.  Helping them prepare for childbirth reduces fear of the unknown.  Practical parenting tools allow them to move forward more confidently with their decision to parent.  Teens (14 and older) are always needed to help with childcare, so that parents can attend class without distraction.  
(Monday-Tuesday evenings 5:30-7:30)

Baby bucks earned by attending class and completing homework serve as incentives and provide clients with a renewed sense of responsibility and purpose.  Earning baby bucks enables them to purchase much needed baby items, including diapers for their newborns.  Donations of newborn diapers are always needed, so consider picking up a package when you shop. 

After a client's baby arrives, our Meals for Moms ministry provides further support by delivering several meals.  Many of our clients are unchurched and not used to this kind of ministry, so it is a practical example of support they need given in the name of Jesus.  If you would like to help with meals, contact Ananda Elam, who leads this ministry at 321-726-0842 or ananda@cfl.rr.com.

Each time a client returns to the center, we have opportunity to further “touch” their lives and form relationships.  In addition to practical classes, we provide a basic Biblical Foundations class.  Our goal is to evangelize clients and direct them to local churches for further discipleship.  If you would like to lead a 5 week study (based on our Life Skills booklets) once or twice a year, contact Judy Miller at 321-752-5540 or director@melbournepri.com.

Come be a part of what God is doing at Pregnancy Resources!  

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Three Men on a Mission: Trip Equips Believers in Ecuador
January 19, 2012

In November, three CPC members traveled to Pichiyacu, Ecuador to train the pastor and key leaders in leadership, apologetics, and mercy ministry. Associate Pastor Jonathan Culley, Elder Mark Diener, and Deacon Gaston Formisano, who served as translator, spent a week equipping leaders in spiritual and practical church matters.

"And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others"  2 Timothy 2:2

Once they arrived in the jungle village of Pichiyacu, the men conducted daily training sessions to equip the pastor and key leaders in how to set up a leadership development process where leaders know how to "make disciples who make disciples."  This included extensive training on why and how to raise up biblical elders and deacons as well as small group leader training. Mark explained, “By this time next year, they’ll have four elders who are trained in leadership.”   

Mercy Fund
Another unexpected way God used the three men to bless the Pichiyacu church was to help Pastor Bolivar Ruiz set up a "Mercy Fund" and a "Mercy Committee" where practical needs could be met by the church without overburdening the pastor. “Because the people will be contributing to the Mercy Fund,” Jonathan said, “the Fund provided a way for the people of the church – not just the pastor – to ‘own’ the solution to their own people’s needs.”

Pastoral Coaching
Mark said that, for him, the best experience was talking with Pastor Bolivar in the evenings. “It’s incredible to see the passion he has for his people. He and his family make sacrifices to be there – he’s a missionary pastor. He comes from a bigger city, and now he’s isolated; he has no one to shepherd him.”  Jonathan agreed, “We had numerous heart-to-heart talks with Bolivar where we were able to go deep and give him a ‘safe place’ to confess his struggles, fears, and pressures as a pastor.  Bolivar told us that he had never experienced this sort of ‘pastoral coaching’ before, and that it greatly energized him to keep persevering in his pastoral call on the River.”

While three CPC members went in person to support Pastor Bolivar and the believers in Pichiyacu, we as a church can also support them from afar by keeping Pastor Bolivar, his family, and the Pichiyacu church in our prayers.

Over the years, God has greatly used Ted Wareing, the Director of Life Changing Ministries (LCM) and one of our very own members, to establish this church in the jungles of North Ecuador.  We are honored to partner with LCM as we jointly envision many more church plants up and down this river.  Please pray that Jesus would continue building His church by raising up laborers who will lead the River People out of darkness and into the light of the Gospel.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Thanksgiving Nursing Home Outreach
January 4, 2012

End of the Road

The last stop in the lives of many elderly and infirm people is a nursing home.  This can be a lonely time for them, because the advancement of years has taken its toll on their bodies and minds.  Esther Kennedy, who went to a recent Nursing Home Outreach event, said they can be “a forgotten people, as many are feeble minded, unable to communicate, and so hidden within their exterior that it’s hard to ‘reach’ them.  But you never know what the Lord is doing.”  With a recent visit to Atlantic Shores Nursing Home (on Stack Blvd, less than one mile from Palm Bay Rd.), many CPC members felt like the Lord was working through them to bless the nursing home residents. 

“Amazing grace, how sweet the sound…

The highlights of visits made to Atlantic Shores include music and hula dancing, which has touched the hearts of those that ministered as much as the residents.  Kaela Miller was moved when she and her brother Sam played an Irish fiddling tune for the residents.  “I realized that this wasn't a performance,” Kaela says, “and they were helping me more than I could ever help them.”  Sam was equally moved when they played for them.  “Seeing the people hum along with old familiar fiddling tunes or sing the words to Amazing Grace while [we] played these songs…was really cool.” 

“Where Two or More are Gathered in My Name...”

Alan and Jean LeStourgeon have been involved with trips to Atlantic Shores for the past six years and see God working in new ways with every visit.  Barbara Abbott has only been on two trips, but has already felt God is working through her to bless the residents.   “Although many of the residents are really not aware of what they are participating in, I believe they get the benefits of sitting in a service that worships our Lord and Savior,” Barbara says.  “’Where two or more are gathered in my name...’ so though we are not aware of what the Holy Spirit is accomplishing during these services we pray that much is being done for their salvation.”  If you feel like you want to become involved with the Nursing Home Outreach ministry, click here or contact Merlita Cote at hulamerlita@gmail.com

“Jesus said, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’” 
~Matthew 25:40

submitted by McCartney Diener