Volume 6, Number 4 • February 15, 2012 • www.agrm.org
Your mission needs you in D.C.
Just flip on the news and you know that cold political winds are blowing square in the face of faith-based organizations. Here’s a chance to affect the “weather.” AGRM’s DC Forum on March 18–20—just over a month away—will be an event CEOs and PR professionals to learn the latest inside scoop on at least seven different issues dogging the feet of faith-based organizations that work with homeless and addicted people. The event will also give participants an opportunity to build relationships with the leaders of advocacy groups who share your goals. If you’re not there you can’t tell your story, voice your concerns, or discuss ways for you and your lawmakers to work together in the future. CEOs: Please register today for this important event.
For the DC Forum, AGRM has obtained a very reasonable room rate at the well-appointed Kellogg Conference Center, just north of Capitol Hill. The rates include all the meetings, two overnights at Kellogg, and six meals. AGRM will handle all of the arrangements with the hotel. View the schedule, get additional information, and register for this event on the DC Forum page.
What in the world are you doing?
Next month, AGRM Board Chair Brad Meuli and AGRM President John Ashmen will travel to Uganda to attend the Association of Urban Missions of Africa (AUMA) conference and the City Mission World Association (CMWA) board meeting. One of the items on the CMWA agenda is to compile information about sister-mission relationships, project partnerships, staff swaps, or formal idea exchanges that are already taking place. For example, Denver Rescue Mission (Denver, Colo.) has a sister-mission relationship with the Berlin City Mission in Berlin, Germany. Staff from both organizations have visited the others' facilities for idea exchanges and instruction. They have also swapped staff apprentices at different times. Capital City Rescue Mission (Albany, N.Y.) has a similar relationship with the Manchester City Mission in Manchester, England.
Does your mission have a relationship with another mission or church anywhere outside North America? If so, we would love to know what it is. (And if you would like to have a relationship with a similar ministry but currently don't, we'd love to know that, too.) Email your information and some basic details to Executive Assistant Lily Wright. We need to hear from you no later than March 7.
Note: March 1 is an annual convention price-break deadline
Registration rates for the convention in Orlando, Florida—May 20 – 23—increase $20 per person after March 1. Registrations faxed, postmarked, or completed online by March 1 can take advantage of the savings. Don’t miss this next deadline. Go to www.agrm.org and select Attend an Event from the pull-down menu and choose 99th Annual Convention.
Our annual convention seminars will be outstanding
The educational offering at this year’s big event will be one of many reasons why you need to attend. The subject matter is fresh and timely. Here are just five of the nearly 100 sessions that will be offered:
For all the latest convention news and updates, including a soon-to-be-complete listing of all the seminars that will be offered, check the convention webpage often.
The Merriam Agency might be able to help you get to Orlando
Scholarships established by the Merriam Insurance Agency are available for some AGRM members to attend the annual convention. If your mission has an annual operating budget of less than $500,000, contact Convention Registrar Amy Thomas.
Enter 2012 Media Innovation Competition online
Online entry for the 2012 Media Innovation Competition is up and running. The competition categories include annual report, general brochure, newsletter/magazine, website, video, podcast, blog, and photo. Please review all competition rules and judging criteria before entering. The deadline for submission is March 30, 2012. If you have any questions, contact Director of Public Relations Nicole Daniels by email or by phone at (719) 266-8300, ext. 103.
Mission develops videos to promote Invisible Neighbors
The AGRM staff has been very impressed with the recent videos of Redwood Gospel Mission (Santa Rosa, Calif.). The mission has developed these and put them on their website to go hand-in-hand with their use of Invisible Neighbors. CEO Jeff Gilman says they hope to have 100 Bible studies launched this year using the resource. Go to the mission’s website and click on the maroon bar at the top that says Check out MissionQuestions.org, and the current video on serving will come up. Scroll down on that same page and you will see their videos on giving, relating, and praying. Jeff adds that another video on learning will be launched soon.
Looking down the street…
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Rhode Island statehouse becomes soup kitchen site
Homeless advocates, noting that the state of Rhode Island’s homeless population is at a five-year high, have set up a soup kitchen in the State House rotunda. According to a Coventry Patch report the goal is to bring the state’s homelessness problem right to the feet of the legislators. The soup kitchen will be open every Wednesday from 3:00–4:00 p.m., and will be managed each week by a different community group. This week, rows of paper-bag lunches were lined up on a folding table, and a steady stream of people from all walks of life took turns helping themselves to a meal. Thousands in the state are near or facing homelessness in the future due to high rents, an increasing cost of living, and low and stagnant wages, advocates state, calling upon members of the state’s General Assembly to support a series of legislative initiatives that would expand affordable housing, fund homeless prevention, and create a Homeless Bill of Rights.
Interactive map provides local look at health issues
How does your area’s health stack up against other parts of the United States? Check out CNN’s interactive map to look at health issues such as obesity, stroke, heart disease, and other topics. You can enter a city name or zip code and zoom in to your county and see how your area compares with other parts of the country.
Clothesline raises domestic violence awareness
From a distance they appear to only be ragged T-shirts on a clothesline. But when viewed up close, it's clear the shirts carry powerful messages. According to a Deseret News report, advocates for domestic violence displayed The Clothesline Project in the Utah state Capitol. More than 100 shirts were hung on clotheslines around the rotunda, and each shirt contained a message written by victims of domestic or sexual violence, expressing their feelings about the experience. Some of the shirts had long stories written on them. Others had messages that were more to the point, including one with a hole cut out in the stomach and the words, “This hole is where my child should have been" written around the edge. Another has the words, "I drank, I let you in my room, I said no, so it's my fault, right?" Two bills before the state legislature this session deal with domestic violence, including one that proposes protective orders in dating relationships.
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Many married couples still in love
Okay, so Valentine’s Day was yesterday. But according to a new national survey of married Americans, 40 percent of those who'd been married at least 10 years say they remain "very intensely" in love with their partner. According to an msnbc report, the study sought to determine whether long-term romantic love was a rare phenomenon. The researchers were surprised to find just the opposite. Even for the longest marriages—three decades or more—40 percent of women and 35 percent of men said they were still madly in love. On average, survey respondents were in their mid- to late-40s, and had been married for around 20 years. Researches also wanted to find out some of the reasons why love sometimes does last for the long haul: Those who said they remained "intensely" in love were also more likely to think positively about their partner and to think about their partner when they were apart; they also reported more frequent hugs, kisses, and yes, sex. Lasting love was also associated with common interests—especially those that were new or challenging—and general life happiness. On the other hand, the results also identified two things that don't matter when it comes to long-term love: education level and money.
Therapy apps coming to smart phones?
The very idea of psychotherapy seems to defy the instant-access, video screen chatter of popular digital culture. Not for long, if some scientists have their way. According to a New York Times report, researchers have been testing simple video-game-like programs aimed at relieving common problems such as anxiety and depression. Recent results have been encouraging enough that investigators are now delivering the programs on smartphones— therapy apps, in effect, that may soon make psychological help accessible anytime, anywhere. As part of the study, participants who received treatment improved their scores on a questionnaire measuring anxiety, dropping by an average of 22 points, compared with an 8-point drop among people in a “waiting list” group, who got no computer games to play. However, the anxiety levels of a placebo group in the study also fell by about 22 points. Of course, the prospect of a therapy app is stirring as much dread as hope in some quarters. “We are built as human beings to figure out our place in the world, to construct a narrative in the context of a relationship that gives meaning to our lives,” said Andrew J. Gerber, a psychiatrist at Columbia University. “I would be wary of treatments that don’t allow for that.” Other experts note the upside is that well-designed apps could reach millions of people who lack the means or interest to engage in traditional therapy and need more than the pop mysticism, soothing thoughts, or confidence boosters now in use.
Young adults struggle to find and keep employment
It's been rough for Millennials growing up in the wake of the Great Recession. According to a U.S. News report, just 54 percent of adults between 18 and 24 are currently employed, the lowest since the government started collecting the data in 1948. Wages for this age group have also dropped 6 percent, more than any other age group over the past four years. However, the spirit of optimism curiously persists among young adults. Almost 60 percent of adults between ages 18 and 34 said that while they don't have enough money now, they think they will in the future. The picture is much less rosy among older Americans: Almost 30 percent of adults 35 and older say they don't anticipate making enough money down the road. Even young people who are unemployed still see a brighter future—75 percent of those who say they don't have enough income now believe they will have enough money in the future. This optimism doesn't end with their own financial situations; about 60 percent of young adults polled expect their children to be better off financially than they are, compared with just 43 percent among the 35-and-older set.
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A 'Souper' Celebration
The Salina Rescue Mission (Salina, Kan.) was one of the beneficiaries of a local drive known as the Salina Souperbowl of Hope. More than 10 area churches collected soups from four local food stores, as well as from 30 organizations and businesses, during three weekends in January and February, leading up to Super Bowl weekend. The result was more than 46,000 cans of soup collected to benefit the mission, a local food bank, and several other local charities.
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The Rescue Mission (Fort Wayne, Ind.) has a phone system they would like to donate to another mission or similar organization. The WIN 440 system, 48 series includes approximately 40 telephones, along with the "boards" required to network them all. The system has full voicemail features, an automatic greeting/auto-attendant feature, as well as day/night modes. For more details, email Melissa McKeeman, the mission’s business systems manager. Added 2/15/2012
Charlotte, North Carolina: Director of Institutional Advancement—Charlotte Rescue Mission is seeking a director of institutional advancement. Successful candidate will lead the development department via major donors, public relations, and mass fundraising. Candidate will be strong in strategic leadership, analytics, donor relations, and execution. Includes supervision of development team. A multitasking, self-starting, self-confident, can-do, team player with a strong development background is required. Email cover letter and résumé. Added 2/15/2012
Coeur D’Alene, Idaho: Director of Center for Women and Children—For more information, visit the Union Gospel Mission website. Or contact Teri Munson, HR Department., Union Gospel Mission, P.O. Box 4066, Spokane, WA 99220; via email; phone (509) 535-8510; or fax (509) 535-0315. Added 2/15/2012
Colorado Springs, Colorado: IT Assistant—Springs Rescue Mission is seeking an IT Assistant for approximately 30 hours per week. Visit the mission website for full position description and application instructions. Added 2/1/2012
Springfield, Missouri: Director of Development—Springfield Victory Mission is seeking a person to lead its successful development department. The right candidate will have the education, experience, leadership skills, and personality to grow the mission’s donor base, funds, and community image forward from its very strong base. Click here for application instructions. Added 2/1/2012
To advertise in future Market Street Classifieds:
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From the Heart
Too often, we make decisions from what we see, hear, touch, or reason. But 1 Samuel 16:7 reminds us, “The Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
In other words, God is looking at our heart as we make choices and decisions—both good and bad. Many of the people who enter the doors of our missions come to us because they’ve made bad choices and decisions. They arrive, filled with hope and eager to learn how to make better decisions—with God’s Word and guidance.
Today and throughout the coming days and weeks, may God see our hearts and know that we are seeking Him as we guide others in making wise choices that will honor and glorify Him.
Contributed by Billy Barton, executive director of Home of Grace (Vancleave, Miss.). Reprinted with permission from the News from Home newsletter..
To contribute: If you would like to write a devotional thought for "Street Light," please make it about 200 words and include at least one Bible verse or passage, and submit via email.
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