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text 2020-04-29 05:00
The Multicultural Church Spotlight and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book

 


Book:  The Multicultural Church

Author: Dan Willis

Genre:  RELIGION / Christian Church/Growth

Release Date: February 21, 2020

Despite the progress our country has made in Civil Rights over the past century, Sunday morning is still one of the most segregated times in America. It seems like the only people striving to lead in the area of racial reconciliation are politicians, activists, and celebrities. Pastor Dan Willis wants to know… Where is the church? What can the people of God do to become leaders again and not just be Johnny-come-lately followers? The art of bringing harmony to the masses lies in the love all should see in the church of God. If the church is to make a difference and return to relevance in this world, the only option is multicultural ministry. If leaders are not prepared to minister to this growing culture, then American Christianity is in danger of becoming nonessential to the body of believers. For years, Dan Willis has led a growing, multicultural Christian community in the suburbs of Chicago. In The Multicultural Church, Dan shares what he has learned, the mistakes he has made, and what can be done to successfully minister to a diverse culture.



Click HERE to get your copy!
 

About the Author

 


As a boy, Dan Willis’s dreamed of becoming a neurosurgeon until the fateful day when, at age sixteen, he was called to “temporarily” take over as pastor of a local church. Dan took that small ministry of sixteen people and nurtured it into the largest multicultural church on the south side of Chicago, consisting of over five thousand members. Today, Dan still serves as senior pastor of The Lighthouse Church of All Nations, in Alsip, Illinois. The driving force of Dan’s ministry has always been one of uniting the races. To look out over the congregation during a typical worship celebration, you will see men, women, and children from over seventy-two different nations. Dan is also a gifted singer, musician, and producer. He founded a community choir called The Pentecostals of Chicago, bringing together black, white, Hispanic, and Asian singers from over twenty Chicago area churches. This group, now known as The All Nations Choir, has six albums to its credit and has performed with artists from Celine Dion to Kirk Franklin, and has served on missionary trips to the orphanages of Kingston, Jamaica.

A celebrated television host, he created and hosted the Emmy-nominated shows Inspiration Sensation and I’m Just Sayin’. Dan has traveled the country ministering and teaching men and women through the Starting Line Prison Fellowship organization and has also been a national and international speaker on the topics of music, ministry, racial reconciliation, leadership, and community development. Dan is the author of Freedom to Forget and most recently, Praise Is My Weapon. Dan continues to live in Alsip with his wife, Linda, and is father to four grown children and eight grandchildren.
 

More from Dan

 

I have led a successful and growing multicultural congregation in the Chicago suburbs for over twenty years. I wanted to write a short book packed with practical information sharing my personal stories of successes and failures in cross-cultural ministry.
 

Blog Stops

 

 
 

Giveaway

 

 
To celebrate his tour, Dan is giving away the grand prize of a $20 Starbucks gift card!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

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url 2020-04-24 12:28
Ama Dios 9 Consciousness Books Combined FREE on the 1st of May
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Ama Dios: 9 AoL Consciousness Books Combined - Nataša Pantović Nuit

About this Event

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review 2020-04-01 08:52
Beautiful writing, unusual subject, and a challenging read.
The Latecomers - Rich Marcello

I write this review as a member of Rosie’s Book Review Team (authors, if you are looking for reviews, check here), and I freely chose to review an ARC copy of this novel.

I have read and reviewed another novel by Marcello, The Beauty of the Fall (you can read my review here), was entranced by it, and I was eager to read this book, although worried that, at least for me, the previous novel would be a tough act to follow. This book has many of the qualities that made me love the previous one (beautiful language, gorgeous descriptions, a spiritual dimension, a search for personal truth, and many strange and wondrous events that sometimes are difficult to categorize [are they visions, hallucinations, visitations, a transcendental connection with the gods and the elders, enlightenment?], and little interest in following the standard rules of narrative. Yes, there is a beginning, a middle and an end, of sorts, but one sometimes feels as if there were many corridors the characters could choose, which might end up resulting in a variety of futures and of novels, and at times we get hints of those. Somehow, though, it didn’t move me in the same way the previous book did, and that is perhaps down to current circumstances. Reading this novel in the middle of a pandemic, while confined at home, made me feel uneasy about some of the characters’ decisions, their self-absorption, and the ease with which they make decisions that might potentially affect many people, with little regard for anybody else’s interests.

The book is divided into two distinct parts, the first one told, in the first-person, by the two main protagonists, Charlie and Maggie Latecomer, now in their second marriage, seemingly happy, who after successful careers are now pursuing their own artistic interests. Suddenly, despite their deep love for each other, Charlie, who’s been feeling restless, decides he has to go in pursuit of his own path. He tells his wife this and goes on a retreat. Not only that, but he asks a young woman to accompany him. The couple were completely enmeshed in each other, and although Maggie loves the idea of the MOAI, a Japanese concept that they define as a sort of extended family, she acknowledges that she’s resisted including others in theirs. She starts to question everything she had thought, makes new connections and renews some of the old ones, and when the retreat ends in quite a traumatic manner (I ‘ll avoid spoilers), there is a reconfiguration of their MOAI and new people join in. They also go through some life-changing experiences together. This part is more contemplative, more descriptive, and slower than the rest of the book, and I felt somewhat impatient with Charlie, whose behaviour and reasoning I found quite difficult to accept, in light of his protestations of love and of not wanting to hurt Maggie. I liked Maggie much better than Charlie, and although by the end of the book I was more reconciled with Charlie’s character, because he’d gone through quite a lot of change, I still felt more empathy for Maggie, even if I had little in common with any of them or the rest of the characters in the novel (even if I have visited Northampton and enjoyed the descriptions of the town and also of the island and the retreat).  There are more adventures in part two: we have a mystical book that the characters keep trying to decipher, they uncover a secret, they have to fight a big corporation, and they go through much heartache. The rhythm picks up in the second half, and I felt that was partly because we only get to see things from Maggie’s point of view, and she is more determined, action-driven, and even rushed at times.

There are quite a few themes in the novel, including relationships (love, extended families), growing old, health (what does it mean to be healthy and what price would we pay to live longer), pharmaceutical corporations, end of life care, spiritualism, identity, philosophy, religion, mysticism… There is a search for meaning and for finding one’s place in the world that is quite refreshing, especially because the protagonist are not youths trying to decide what to do with the rest of their lives, but older characters, who refuse to be settled and give up (and although I did not connect with some aspects of the book, I definitely connected with that). I do not know much about Nordic mythology and therefore I felt at times that I was missing much of the background that might have allowed me to understand the characters’ experiences better, and that made me feel somewhat detached. The novel is classed as literary fiction and magic realism. Both genres cover a great variety of styles, subjects and reading experiences, and readers who enjoy philosophical themes and like a challenge should give it a try.

I have mentioned the two main characters, and I have said that there are a few others: three that end up becoming a part of their extended family, two elders (both women), another female character who is the spiritual guide, some of the other people attending the retreat, and the baddie (who is never fully explained). I’m not that far of, by age, from many of the characters, but I can’t say I have much else in common with them, as they are all fairly well off, (one very rich), and in general seem untouched by the worries of everyday life. Although we spend time with some of the other characters, and I particularly like the two elders, I did not feel we got to know the rest of the MOAI well enough, considering the length of the novel and the amount of time we spend with them. Part of the problem might be that it’s all told from the first person point of view of the two protagonists, but the decisions of Joe, Ebba (she’s a total puzzle to me), and Rebecca (I liked her but I would have liked to know more) don’t always seem to fit in with what we know about them. But an important part of the novel deals with the fact that no matter how we feel about others, and how connected we are, that does not mean we are the same and we have to live by the same rules and share in all of our experiences. We all have to strive to be the best versions of ourselves.

I have mentioned the writing style at the beginning of my review. There is poetry and lyricism, and as I mentioned above, there are also many contemplative passages. This is not a fast book and there are many descriptions or landscapes, mystic experiences, and also philosophical wanderings. The characters have their own rituals and these are described in detail (and yes, there are descriptions of their art, their shared experiences, their memories, their sexual relationships, although not too explicit…), and I think that readers will either connect with the writing style or not. The quality of the writing is not in question, and the fact that Marcello writes poetry is amply evident, but it won’t suit every taste.

The ending resolves the main points of the plot, although not all mysteries are explained, and there are aspects left to readers’ imagination. I liked the ending, although I had been expecting it for quite a while and at some point worried that the characters wouldn’t do what seemed to be “the right thing”. It’s a difficult decision and not one many people would take in real life, but, at least for me, it made sense.

Would I recommend it? You’ve probably noticed that I’m conflicted about this novel. There is much I like about it and some aspects I don’t like as much, although I think I might have felt different if I had read it in other circumstances (and might come back to it later on). In summary, this is a book for those who like to savour a novel and who enjoy thinking deeply and exploring unusual avenues. It is not a book for those looking for a tightly-plotted story, a mystery, or a fast page-turner. There are mysteries, but not those of the kind we expect to read about in novels of the genre. The protagonists are privileged in many ways, older than the norm, and their search and struggles might not connect with everybody. I’d recommend readers to check a sample of the book, and to give the novel time, because it changes and grows in the second half, as do the main characters, Charlie in particular.  Ah, members of reading clubs have a set of very interesting questions at the end, and I agree this is a book that offers plenty of food for discussion.

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text 2020-03-27 05:01
The Ministry of Healing Spotlight Post
 

About the Book

 


Book:  The Ministry of Healing

Author: A. J. Gordon

Genre:  Christian non-fiction, spiritual growth

Release Date: January 17, 2020

Classic Christian author A. J. Gordon expresses curiosity about whether the healing miracles from the Middle Ages up to his day can be verified as a continuation of Christ’s Spirit in the church. Through deep study and inquiry of the established history, Gordon concludes that the power to heal followers remains with the church—there was no special era of miracle working. God and His powers remain the same in the modern era as they have right through human history. For Gordon, God’s intervention in the suffering and sickness of His followers is frequent; the will of the Lord however is variable—but He will not prolong the pain of someone whose illness is too great. Throughout this text, A. J. Gordon makes his argument from a biblical perspective, citing passages in both the Old and New Testament that support the continuation of spiritual gifts. Quoting testimonies of believers across the ages, he offers a convincing argument that the church ministry is, to this day, one of healing.



Click HERE to get your copy!
 

About the Author

 

Adoniram Judson (A. J.) Gordon (1836–1895) came to prominence in the United States as the evangelical pastor of Clarendon Street Baptist Church in Boston for more than twenty-five years. During his tenure there, he saw the church completely transformed into one of the most spiritual and aggressive churches in America, with an unsurpassed effort in missions. A missionary training school and publishing house were associated with the church, and Gordon preached at many of D. L. Moody’s Northfield Conferences, along with other notable preachers such as A. B. Simpson, A. T. Pierson, and R. A. Torrey. His training school eventually became Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, in South Hamilton, Massachusetts. He also founded Gordon College, in Wenham, Massachusetts. He wrote his most famous book, The Ministry of Healing, in 1882, but he also wrote at least fifteen hymns, including “My Jesus, I Love Thee,” as well as other books of Christian instruction.
 
 

More from Whitaker House

 

This classic Christian work has previously only been self published. Gordon is renowned as founder of Gordon-Conwell Seminary and Gordon College. His writings became foundational work for what later became the spirit-filled movement.
 
 

Blog Stops

 

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 18

Blossoms and Blessings, March 19 (Spotlight)

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, March 20

Artistic Nobody, March 21 (Spotlight)

Inklings and notions, March 22

Lukewarm Tea, March 23 (Spotlight)

Texas Book-aholic, March 24

Andrea Christenson, March 25 (Spotlight)

deb’s Book Review, March 26

For the Love of Literature, March 27 (Spotlight)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 28

Simple Harvest Reads, March 29 (Spotlight)

CarpeDiem, March 30

For Him and My Family, March 31

 
 

Giveaway

 

To celebrate their tour, Whitaker House is giving away the grand prize of a $20 Starbucks Gift Card!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

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photo 2020-02-18 07:26
Custom License Plates - 219signs

We offer various designs of your license plates online. You can also customize your license plate online by using the online tool of 219signs which gives you attractive and awesome designs.

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