By Dr. Charles Stanley
First Prayer Of The 1774 Continental Congress
O Lord our Heavenly Father, high and mighty King of kings, and Lord of lords, who dost from thy throne behold all the dwellers on earth and reignest with power supreme and uncontrolled over all the Kingdoms, Empires and Governments; look down in mercy, we beseech Thee, on these our American States, who have fled to Thee from the rod of the oppressor and thrown themselves on Thy gracious protection, desiring to be henceforth dependent only on Thee. To Thee have they appealed for the righteousness of their cause; to Thee do they now look up for that countenance and support, which Thou alone canst give. Take them, therefore, Heavenly Father, under Thy nurturing care; give them wisdom in Council and valor in the field; defeat the malicious designs of our cruel adversaries; convince them of the unrighteousness of their Cause and if they persist in their sanguinary purposes, of own unerring justice, sounding in their hearts, constrain them to drop the weapons of war from their unnerved hands in the day of battle!
Be Thou present, O God of wisdom, and direct the councils of this honorable assembly; enable them to settle things on the best and surest foundation. That the scene of blood may be speedily closed; that order, harmony and peace may be effectually restored, and truth and justice, religion and piety, prevail and flourish amongst the people. Preserve the health of their bodies and vigor of their minds; shower down on them and the millions they here represent, such temporal blessings as Thou seest expedient for them in this world and crown them with everlasting glory in the world to come. All this we ask in the name and through the merits of Jesus Christ, Thy Son and our Savior.
From Praying America Great Again, accessed April 13, 2023.
Malawi Resurrection Weekend Conference
Friends, I, Michael Weiss, will teach during the Lion Of Judah Resurrection Weekend Conference in Malawi via Zoom.
Please join us at: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/88371043387 (Passcode: HooYah)
There are going to be 7 sessions, the list below is in Central Standard Time.
Friday, April 7th at 1 pm
Saturday, April 8th at 2 am, 6:30 am and 12 pm
Sunday, April 9th at 2 am, 6:30 am and 12 pm
I do not know the exact time during each session when I will start teaching because there will be beautiful praise and worship first and we don’t know how long Holy Spirit will lead this time before He invites me to share.
But, please come join us for the worship time, Africians worship God with all their hearts, souls and bodies!!!
Bottom Line: Be Loved and Love
Christianity In a Nutshell
Learn from Bishop Murunga the importance of Sound Doctrine
This message re-encouraged me to study God’s Word with a desire to know and teach sound doctrine.
A little tidbit from our friend Dave Coffield, “The grace of God is magnificent. God lines me up for a 100 meter sprint, the gun sounds, He picks me up, hustles down the track with me, wins, and gives me the gold medal. I was involved but the credit, glory, and honor go to Him.”
God’s If, Then for you in Exodus 19
Exodus 19:3–6 (NASB95)
3 Moses went up to God, and the Lord called to him from the mountain, saying, “Thus you shall say to the house of Jacob and tell the sons of Israel:
4 ‘You yourselves have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles’ wings, and brought you to Myself.
5 ‘Now then, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be My own possession among all the peoples, for all the earth is Mine;
6 and you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words that you shall speak to the sons of Israel.”
“What God cannot do does not exist.”
Our friend Patrick in Malawi has been diagnosed with testicular cancer. In response to our asking how Patrick was doing today, Jan 4th, his wife Mervis wrote:
“What God cannot do does not exist. He specializes in wonders and miracles. He will provide the necessary resources to help him [Patrick] through this in Jesus name.”
Please pray for Patrick and his family as you are led and also if led please provide a gift to help pay his medical bills.
After clicking this link choose Malawi as a sub-fund and type “Patrick Surgery” in the note area so we know where to direct your kind and generous donation.
Lindell Cooley Healing Testimony
Shared at Church of His Presence November 6th, 2022
I had a similar experience of God’s peace and confidence I would be fine last April during my heart attack and heart surgery.
I apologize that I couldn’t get the link to work better in this post.
Day 306 of the war in Ukraine
Olive Branch Ukraine Update
My dear friends, my prayer partners, I thank you for the fact that sometimes through such letters I can turn to you to maintain this friendly and prayerful connection of ours.
I thank you for that and I thank our God. I am writing to you this is my personal news update, an update on the news of “Olive Branch” in Ukraine and “The Way of Truth” church, and I wish you a great day!
Today is the 306th day of the war on the land of Ukraine. It seems that time has stopped here in Ukraine. The Russian enemy continues to try to destroy critical infrastructure facilities of Ukraine with cruise missiles and Iranian drones. Our people continue to heroically eliminate the consequences of destruction, and our anti-aircraft forces try to shoot down as many of these flying enemy objects as possible. Our troops continue to repulse the influx of mobilized Russians near Donetsk and Luhansk, our other troops are pushing the enemy out of the Kharkiv and Kherson regions.
I continue to believe that by the grace of God and with your support, we will together defeat this Russian demonic enemy. The chaplains we train and support have a huge and important part to play and serve in this process.
Now is not a very convenient time to plan any “Olive Branch” events in Ukraine. But our team is trying to plan with prayer to the Father and I have hope that these plans will come true by the grace of God.
Thus, I, as the director of the Pastoral – Chaplain Leadership program, planned the following educational programs at the KТS:
According to the KTS curriculum, there are the following date options:
20-24.03.23 – CL102 Chaplain service in hospitals and clinics, instructor Mykola.
06-10.03.23 – CL105 Chaplaincy in Penitentiary Institutions.
03-07.04.23 – CL109 Expository sermon in chaplain service, instructor Igor.
01-05.05.23 – CL110 Chaplain Biblical Counseling, instructor David, translator Gena.
15-19.05.23 – CL107 Civil Security Program, instructor Jeff, translator Gena.
Thank God, now in Ukraine most Protestant churches have switched to the Gregorian calendar and we celebrate the same as you do in the USA. The Orthodox Church of Ukraine and the Greek Catholic Church created a commission to reform the Julian calendar and switch to church holidays according to the Gregorian calendar. Many local churches of the Russian Orthodox Church in Ukraine continue to come under the jurisdiction of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine.
Yesterday, our church “The Way of Truth” celebrated Christmas. I congratulate you on the Christmas of Christ from myself and Marina, from the “Olive Branch” in Ukraine and from the “Way of Truth” church.
My dear friends and partners, thanks to you, your prayer and your help, I, our church and “Olive branch” in Ukraine have the opportunity to continue working in wartime. Thank you very much to God.
Mykola, the senior hospital chaplain in the city of Cherkasy, together with the chaplain team, serves all those who need it in the hospital. There are also wounded soldiers in the hospital. The hospital has given the chaplains another, larger, separate space for their office, which they will need to renovate.
Women’s ministry leader Zhanna also does a lot of work to support homeless people. She visits the wounded with her husband and continues to coordinate women’s clubs in different regions of Ukraine that serve women independently. Zhanna and Sergiy visited the children of territorial defense, who also lost their homes (30 children). Without light, with lanterns, but it was fun. 200 people (wounded and medical personnel) were visited in the Kyiv hospital (for physical strengthening – fruits, nuts, sweets, for warmth – socks). And to pray for their healing and the victory of Ukraine, they gave a spiritual gift “Prayers of a Ukrainian”.
Marina and I were able to take 51 children’s gifts to the military town of Semipolka in the car you helped me buy. Every year, our church learns to donate gifts for children from military families. Our 40 church members each brought one gift and added another from Olive Branch donations. The women and children of the military town thought that this year they would not have a holiday or presents. There were no men there, because they are all in the war zone. Thanks to us coming to them, they had a good Christmas and thanked us. I thank you also, for this is your part of the donation.
The second week in the evening, I teach for two hours to civilian church groups about chaplaincy, because people from the churches ask how they can be useful to the military.
Thanks to the financial assistance provided through the Olive Branch, the “Way of Truth” church was able to pay the rent, because due to the war, the financial donation was not enough to fully cover the rent. Thank you. May God bless the generous hand.
Thank you very much to you and all the employees of the Olive branch for your great support of Ukrainians during the military trials. God sees what you sincerely do, God sees your sacrificial heart, therefore it is written that our Creator will accordingly do good for you, that is, for those who helped others in difficult times. May the Lord return everything abundantly to you and give thanks as only He can.I wish that we have in the soul a peace from God.
President of the Public organization “Olive Branch” Ukrainewww.olivebranch.org.ua
Program director of “Pastors-Chaplains Leadership” of the Kiev Theological Seminary
+38 097 9638406
This letter was translated by an electronic translator, so I apologize in advance for any errors that you may have noticed.
Religious Freedom Court Cases Recently Won
Please listen to this presentation by Attorney Kelly Shackelford, from First Liberty, to the ProFamily Legislators Conference last month about cases won in Federal and Supreme Courts concerning free speech, the right to assemble, the right to pray in public, the overturning of the Lemon case from 1971 and many more.
His presentation is broken into two parts on the Wallbuilders webpage:
I am very encouraged by what Kelly shares and hope you will also!!
“It cannot not bear fruit.”
Part of a recent letter from our friend Dave Coffield.
It is difficult when so many of us have grown up in a Christian culture of either church and/or parachurch where ministry and works are stressed. We have a chaplain who tells us pretty much every time he is standing up front, that our job is to fill the empty fews. So, you feel a little guilty and overwhelmed.
I love the words of Jesus on His way with the disciples to the Garden of Gethsemane to engage in serious prayer prior to His arrest. He stops by a vineyard and grabs a grape plant and tells them that He is the True Vine and they are branches. Their job is to abide in Him. Their job is to abide in Him.
You know John 15:5, “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.” The branch is not concerned about bearing fruit, it is concerned about abiding, about partaking of the rich life of the vine. It will bear fruit if it abides. It cannot not bear fruit.
There has been discussion about what “fruit” is. I like to suggest that fruit is anything that the Holy Spirit wants to produce through a person’s life as they abide in Jesus. And it is seasonal. My friend, Bill Mason, suggests from Psalm 1 that the tree bears fruit “in its season.”
My attention, my focus should be on abiding.
Anytime I am engaging with a believer I want to know how they are abiding. I don’t have concerns about bearing fruit if they are abiding. It is impossible to bear good fruit if you are not abiding. You can produce stuff. Check out the Lord’s comments in Matthew 7 when He says, “Many will say to Me on that day…” They prophesy in His name, they cast out demons in His name, and they perform miracles. Pretty cool. Except…they don’t know Him. They are not abiding in Him.
Do I dare to believe that my value to my Father resides in my relationship with Him?
Way to go Harriet!!!
Nov. 23, 2022
In the summer of 2001, Harriet Bograd decided to visit her daughter Margie, who had taken a summer job in a remote village in Ghana.
When Ms. Bograd and her husband, Ken Klein, arrived in the village, Sefwi Wiawso, they learned about its community of two dozen families who considered themselves Jewish, even if religious authorities in Israel and elsewhere did not.
In the week she was there, Ms. Bograd, whose husband called her “one of life’s great enthusiasts,” turned her enchantment with the villagers into a practical project that has become a major source of income for the community. She guided artisans in fashioning the colorful kente cloth sold in the local market into covers for the braided challahs that observant Jews bless and eat during Sabbath and holiday meals. A trained lawyer, she set the community up as an incorporated business that sold the challah covers across the United States for $36 apiece. Thousands have been purchased.
In the years after that trip, Ms. Bograd worked with the nonprofit organization Kulanu, which supports “isolated, emerging or returning” Jewish communities in places where even most American Jews don’t realize there are Jews: Uganda, Tanzania, Nigeria, Cameroon, Madagascar, Indonesia, Pakistan, Guatemala, the Philippines and more — 33 countries in total. These are people who for generations have kept some fundamental Jewish laws, like resting on the Sabbath and abstaining from certain foods, but that may have had only opaque ideas of their community’s Jewish origins.
They trace their Jewish roots to a variety of sources: the 10 lost tribes that were dispersed by the Assyrian conquest of the Kingdom of Israel in 722 B.C.E.; the Spanish and Portuguese inquisitions, which, starting in the late 15th century, scattered thousands of Jews in far-off lands, where many practiced their religion in secret; century-old conversions by communal leaders more attracted to the Old Testament than the teachings of Christian missionaries.
“It gave her such joy that these Jewish people felt they were connected to the greater Jewish world and felt they belonged,” Mollie Levine, the deputy director of Kulanu, said in an interview.
Ms. Bograd died on Sept. 17 in a Manhattan hospital. She was 79. Her daughter Rabbi Margie Klein Ronkin said the cause was complications of heart surgery.
So exhilarated was Ms. Bograd by her experience in Ghana that she promptly joined the board of Kulanu. By her death, she had served as its president for 14 years. The organization’s headquarters were in the study of her Upper West Side apartment.
Under her command, the organization, whose Hebrew name means “all of us,” raised funds to build synagogues in Uganda and Zimbabwe; a Jewish-themed primary school in Uganda that is open to Christians and Muslims; and a mikvah — a ritual bath — in Tanzania. With a budget of around $500,000, Kulanu has also provided rabbinical training and advanced classes in Judaism at American seminaries for community leaders and distributed prayer books, Torah scrolls, prayer shawls and other ritual items.
Kulanu’s work has not been without controversy. While Jews in Ethiopia have been recognized by the Orthodox authorities in Israel as authentically Jewish, those in other parts of Africa have not been. Efforts by Conservative rabbis to formally convert some Africans to Judaism have encountered challenges because the Orthodox establishment in Israel does not recognize the legitimacy of Conservative rabbis. Bonita Nathan Sussman, Kulanu’s new president, said that many Africans also reject conversion, arguing, “Who are you to tell me I’m not Jewish?”
On the other hand, Ms. Levine said, Ms. Bograd “met them at the level where they are.”
She was active in Jewish causes in New York as well. In the early 1980s, she and other parents partnered with educators to found the Heschel School, a Jewish day school in Manhattan that now enrolls about a thousand students. And at the West End Synagogue, a Reconstructionist congregation, she was known for the warm way she greeted newcomers, an act congregants affectionately called “Bograding.”
Harriet Mary Bograd was born on April 6, 1943, in Paterson, N.J., into a Conservative Jewish home. Her father, Samuel Bograd, owned an upscale furniture emporium with an uncle. Her mother, Pauline (Klemes) Bograd, sometimes helped him with his business and was a leader in a local chapter of Planned Parenthood.
Harriet attended a special high school operated by Montclair State Teachers College (now Montclair State University) and graduated from Bryn Mawr in 1963 with a degree in political science. The summer she graduated, she arranged for a group of nine white Bryn Mawr students to teach at Livingstone College, a historically Black college in Salisbury, N.C., so they could absorb the impact of the growing civil rights movement.
One of 11 women in her class at Yale Law School, she graduated in 1966. Rather then joining a law firm, she went to work for an organization in New Haven, Conn., that represented indigent clients in matters like access to medical care and trained local residents to be advocates for themselves and their neighbors. She helped start a day care center in New Haven, joined with other parents and teachers in a drive to improve local public schools and campaigned for the government to approach drug addiction as a crisis of health and poverty rather than a crime.
She married Mr. Klein, a tax lawyer, in 1977. In addition to her daughter Rabbi Klein Ronkin, he survives her, as do another daughter, Sarah Klein; a sister, Naomi Robbins; and two grandchildren.
When Ms. Bograd received a diagnosis of Stage 4 breast cancer in 1997, with a bleak prognosis, it only made her more determined to use her remaining time for the Hebrew concept of tikkun olam — “repairing the world” — and for her work with Kulanu.
Jonathan Sarna, a professor of American Jewish history at Brandeis University, said that Ms. Bograd also saw Kulanu as a vehicle to expand the mainstream Jewish sense of what Jews are supposed to look like.
“She felt it enhanced American Judaism,” he said, “to recognize that all Jews are not white and European.”
Joseph Berger was a reporter and editor at The New York Times for 30 years. He is the author of a biography of Elie Wiesel, which is scheduled for publication in February. @joeberg
A version of this article appears in print on Nov. 25, 2022, Section A, Page 23 of the New York edition with the headline: Harriet Bograd, 79, Guide and Mentor To Jewish Communities Around World