Now with 7000 participants! Hooray!!!
News and Notes about Brigada, Your Gateway to Missions Networking!
On the WorldWide Web, browse https://brigada.org or http://www.eGroups.com/list/brigada-today
Brigada Today is “the missionary helper newsletter!”
Compiled by Doug Lucas
[Pass this issue to a friend! To subscribe, see instructions at end.]
In this issue….
* HAPPY BIRTHDAY BRIGADA!!!
* GARLIC AND GARDENIAS FOR BRIGADA
* DISCOVER THE DISCOVERY EDITION
* LEARN TO CHAT IN CZECH!
* DO YOU BELIEVE IN “MAGIC”???
* BIBLE CLIPS?
* DONOR SOFTWARE . . . ONE-BY-ONE
* “FOR MISSIONARIES ONLY” IS WORTH REPEATING
* WATCH YOUR WEBSIDE
* ONE OPTION FOR WOULD-BE TENTMAKERS
* SORRY ABOUT THE MILE-LONG TEXT!
* PIPING IN PIPER
* HTML BRIGADA BY MAIL?
* TWO MORMON MISSIONARIES KIDNAPPED NOW FREE AGAIN
* WHEN WILL WE STOP BEING SUCKERS
* GOT A GREAT SURVEY? SHARE IT!
* SPEAK FARSI? NOW YOU CAN LISTEN TO IT!
* YOUR RATES MIGHT HAVE JUST DOUBLED
* GLOBAL GLIMPSE ON TAPE
* FREE UNZIPPING SOFTWARE
* DR. LIVINGSTONE (THE BOOK) WE PRESUME
* DON’T FORGET ABOUT REAL-TIME CHATTING, IF YOU DARE
* TO SUBSCRIBE TO BRIGADA TODAY
HAPPY BIRTHDAY BRIGADA!!!
birthday cake Join us as we celebrate 3 years of focus on mobilization for the final frontiers! The first “edition” of Brigada Today occurred in January 1995 as a simple test letter between two individuals, Jonathan Marsden and Doug Lucas. Within a month, there were 38 participants and with the Feb. 18th issue, the idea of Brigada Today and the Brigada family of networks began to take shape in a more concrete way. March 21st was set as the official “public opening” and by that day, there were more than 100 involved. Interestingly enough, by August 23rd, just when we were about to celebrate topping the 800 mark and introducing something called the “People Group Consultant,” we ran this item: FROM THE “LET’S GET SERIOUS ABOUT VISION” DEPARTMENT — Ya know, I always thought that if a person was highly technical, highly skilled, highly process oriented, then they would probably be pretty scared about bulging growth. Not so with Jonathan Marsden, who helps bring the technical stuff to life at MAFxc and, as such, helps with Brigada technical projects. When I asked him in August ’95 regarding how he felt about Brigada growing past the 800 mark, I was surprised to hear him say he wasn’t satisfied. “I won’t be happy until we have 10,000 people on board, with hundreds of conferences about least reached people groups and cities all over the world.”
And now, with well some 7000 people involved, we’re nearly 3/4 of the way to Jonathan’s goal… but we’ve got a long way to go to really make a dent in the Task. Will electronic networking accomplish the Great Commission? Never. But can it help put people in touch with others? You bet. Thanks for all the encouraging testimonies we receive each week … and thanks for being part of the Brigada family! (Thanks, too, for keeping us humble! :-) One Brigada participant wrote last week, after seeing our opening item, “Let him who thinks he stands…” :-) Point taken. He went on to give encouragement . . . but . . . a word to the wise received!
GARLIC AND GARDENIAS FOR BRIGADA
So how do we answer when people ask, “What are the five greatest strides forward and the five greatest “missed opportunities” so far with Brigada? Here’s our “garlic and gardenias” grasscatcher list:
* Gardenias to the sheer numbers of people who have jumped on board
* Garlic to the fact that those numbers haven’t translated into “action forums” for unreached groups
* Gardenias to the number of “connections” all of us now enjoy to virtually any subject in practically any part of the world! (If Brigada Today carries a query about just about anything, people tell us they get anywhere from 7 to 70+ responses giving answers and resources.)
* Garlic to the continuing questions about web security for creative access lands.
* Gardenias to the volunteerism we see that makes the Brigada concept possible! For an example, look to Don and Judy Pratt, who faithfully handle questions and problems for 7000-person mailing list some magazines have 10 people to handle that same work load and Don & Judy do it as a labor of love [while volunteering additional hours with their adopt-a-people project in China]! … and to Bob Mayhew for amazingly consistent web-mastery, transferring everything to HTML on a weekly basis, again as a labor of love! https://brigada.org … and to contributors like John Hanna and Mark Kelly who go on week after week, month after month, writing their columns, gathering their resources/info., AGAIN, as a labor of love. You get the idea!
* Garlic to our inability to figure out how to recruit volunteers to moderate proactive information-sharing conferences for the least reached people groups on the JP2000 list.
* Gardenias to the folks at MAFxc (like Jonathan, Rex, Bob, and early on, for Cathleen Sward) who have managed somehow to put together a bunch of wildly fun tools with incredible potential that we can all use for an insanely reasonable cost! … and to MAF (the mother org.) for believing in electronic communication enough to make the investment and buy “CrossConnect” (now MAFxc) from it’s original holding organization back when CrossConnect was still more of an idea than it was a producer of any funding at all.
* Garlic to the ideas that have never really reach their full potential, like the full implementation of the “People Group Consultant.”
* Gardenias to my wife and two boys, and to the board to which I am responsible at Team Expansion for giving me up to this labor of love for an additional 10-20 hours per week to handle the extra workload to lead the Brigada family of networks and compile Brigada Today each week.
* Garlic to the fact that I wish we could do more promotion, more marketing, more intentional growth planning, more experimentation, more recruitment, more information packets, more cutting edge stuff!
So . . . on this 3-year anniversary, we say thanks to all Brigada participants and make a very simple birthday wish: that God would enable us to make some small contribution to the global growth of His kingdom. We don’t wish for big numbers if they aren’t effective at bringing change; we don’t long for new technology if it doesn’t put us better in touch with people worldwide; we don’t yearn for publicity, a “name” or anything earthly… but that You, our Lord, would be exalted through our every word, our every step, our every keystroke. That’s our prayer. That’s the purpose of Brigada.
DISCOVER THE DISCOVERY EDITION
Have you heard about the Bible Explorer Discovery Edition? It retails for only $14.95. It is a full-blown Bible study product (not a “teaser” package) that includes the KJV, Living Bible, Thompson’s Chain, Treasury of Scripture Knowledge, maps, photos, a Bible Reading Planner, the Necessity of Prayer by EM Bounds, and more! SCCE called it their “1997 Gift of the Year.” Yikes! blinking1eyes For $14.95, I can understand why. Thompson’s Chain would cost $50 by itself!!! (at least in print form) The same company also offers a “Trial Edition” for $2.95 (that’s not a typo!), and includes the full library of their $350 version! The difference is that it expires after 30 days. (Maybe His word isn’t eternal after all!!! :-) ) The idea is that it will benefit people who are considering purchasing Bible software but aren’t sure what to get, and who don’t want to buy something they aren’t sure they can use. Now for the price of a hamburger (… well … maybe a value meal???) you can try world class Bible software in their own homes for 30 days. Check it out at http://www.epiphanysoftware.com/ or contact the company at support@EpiphanySoftware.com, Tel 888-333-BIBLE. Thanks Andy! Great opportunity!
TO CHAT IN CZECH!
Or talk to your new Kurdish neighbors in their own language! Marti at Caleb Project wrote, “The best source for language learning materials I’ve found is Audio-Forum. First got their “Azerbaijani” tapes through my local library and now I’m hooked. They claim to have the world’s largest selection of self-instructional language courses, including native American languages.” These people apparently have 275 courses in 96 languages, from Afrikaans to Zulu. Also lots of ESL material, tapes, books, and videos.
96 Broad Street
Guilford, CT 06437
What a great tip, Marti! Thanks!
DO YOU BELIEVE IN “MAGIC”???
lighting the way Honest — last week’s reference to “the magic of the Internet” wasn’t intended to carry any spiritual significance. It’s only a figure of speech. Yikes gulp — we get mail on everything! :-)
Has anyone ever checked out “Bible Clips” from Logos? They’re apparently a combination of scripture and artwork, formerly $119.95, but recently reduced to $59.95. http://www.logos.com/products/bibleclips/ Reportedly ideal for Vacation Bible School, Church bulletins, Books and pamphlets, Posters and signs, Curriculum materials, Slides, T-shirt art, Drama backgrounds, Sunday School handouts, Children’s coloring books, Flannelgraphs, Finger puppets, Holiday crafts, Life-size cut-out figures and more. You can see samples of the quality of art included at http://www.logos.com/products/bibleclips/ or jump right to the samples page at http://www.logos.com/products/bibleclips/samples.htm and apparently can order them via toll-free number (from the USA or Net2Phone) at 800-875-6467 to order, or visit their web order page 24 hours a day at http://www.logos.com/products/bibleclips — probably worth a try if you minister to an English-speaking people group or would like extra stuff for mobilization among English speakers. We haven’t heard of anything similar in other languages.
DONOR SOFTWARE . . . ONE-BY-ONE
lighting the way So far we’ve only heard from one supplier of software that helps Christian workers track donations (March 6th Brigada Today, DIALING FOR DOLLARS (WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE DONOR SOFTWARE). They were to have contacted Les Tilka firstname.lastname@example.org, who will assemble the full list. The one we’ve heard about so far looks like it has really possibilities though — Personal Ministry Manager, it’s called. Bob Newman email@example.com puts it out personally — $75 plus $2 for domestic shipping ($5 for international). (If 10 or more are purchased as a group, he drops the price to $60 and promises to negotiate for larger orders.) I’ve seen screen shots and it does indeed look helpful… but correspond directly with Bob for the details. Our own organization wrote something back in 1991 that we still use today… but we’re currently looking at other options just because it’s so hard to maintain the product code.
(WARNING: Don’t ever write a line of code for your organization unless you want to maintain it for the next 7 years! :-))
“FOR MISSIONARIES ONLY” IS WORTH REPEATING
Grace reminded us this past week of FOR MISSIONARIES ONLY 73670.3435@CompuServe.Com, an organization in Washington which specializes in sending Christian cassettes, CD’s, videos, etc. at about 1/3 of the price that you can get them at other places. They have missionaries in mind . . . but anyone can order from them. Catalogs are free. Grace wrote, “They also ship to restricted access countries but one has to be really specific as to how they are/aren’t to package the materials.” Write them at
PO Box 243
11681 Riverbend Dr.
Leavenworth, WA 98826
Fax them at 1-509-548-6585 73670.3435@CompuServe.Com
WATCH YOUR WEBSIDE
WebWatch Remember to be sensitive to peering eyes on your web site. Ian Prescott IanPrescott@XC.org sent a warning just this morning to Brigada-Peoples citing an illustration from the field in which a local web-browsing resident had picked up a reference from one of the search engines and happened upon page-after-page of information about his Muslim people group. So — bottom line — write everything with the reality-check that it might someday be read by those who don’t share a sympathetic view. The greatest attribute we can display is love.
ONE OPTION FOR WOULD-BE TENTMAKERS
Here’s a growing company of all kinds of people involved in placing people in tentmaking roles in creative-access lands. They promise to find you both income and legitimate presence. Write firstname.lastname@example.org or review the Web at http://www.tcigateway.com/ for more information. I don’t have personal experience with them . . . so make sure you check things out for yourself…. but it sounds good!
SORRY ABOUT THE MILE-LONG TEXT!
letter and ligntening bolt Our apologies for the mile-long margins last week! Yikes gulp . . . one Brigada participant wrote that it was 2 feet deep and about 4 yards wide! Another said he finally had an excuse to buy a bigger monitor! :-) You guys are hilarious. :-) That’s all we need Missionary-types trying to become comedians. :-) Seriously, seems to be a problem with the new email client we’re using (for those who care, “Goldmine” is the culprit). In the meantime, we’ve sent this issue in good old-fashioned EudoraPro 4.0. We’re corresponding with the developers about the issue. ‘Course, maybe they can’t see our problems because they can’t scroll that far to the right! :-) Want to hear the funny part? Some users loved the new format because their mail clients wrap the text automatically . . . and when they copied it into their word processors for import into other formats, they didn’t have to suck out the hard carriage returns! For that reason, the first response from the developers at Goldmine was, “Tell all your users to upgrade!” :-) Easy for him to say. :-)
PIPING IN PIPER
lighting the way Sorry the recent reference to John Piper’s web site was a little bit behind-the-times! His new site is http://www.desiringgod.org/ Thanks Mike!
HTML BRIGADA BY MAIL?
Occasionally we get requests to “push” Brigada Today to users by mail, either as a separate subscription or as a replacement to the ASCII version. This would allow users to double-click the title of the item they’d like to read and thereby, jump right to it immediately. (Bob Mayhew programs the Brigada Today web equivalent in this way — https://brigada.org/.) Though this would probably offer extra convenience to some, many haven’t made the leap (so to speak) to HTML-compatible mail clients. So by necessity, it would mean starting a whole new distribution list . . . with new volunteers to maintain it. If somebody out there would like to tackle that, please write. . . but otherwise, looks like we’re stuck with the PgDn key! :-)
TWO MORMON MISSIONARIES KIDNAPPED NOW FREE AGAIN
The latest news is that the two Mormon missionaries in Russia (kidnapped earlier last week) are now free. Still . . . watch and pray. If it can happen to them, it can happen to you . . . be careful out there.
WHEN WILL WE STOP BEING SUCKERS . . .
… to every false “virus alert” that comes along! :-) The latest are “RETURNED OR UNABLE TO DELIVER” and “Win a Holiday.” Once again . . . neither is legitimately a virus. You can’t get a virus by reading email at this time. But you can by running attachments. So, for that reason, we suggest that unless you have virus-checking software, don’t open unrequested attachments!
note Avoid sending unconfirmed warnings about viruses. See the U.S. Department of Energy’s Computer Incident Advisory Capability Web site for a list of Internet hoaxes and procedures for confirming a genuine virus warning: http://ciac.llnl.gov/ciac/CIACHoaxes.html
GOT A GREAT SURVEY? SHARE IT!
Got a line on a great survey to use to figure out what your community believes about Christ? Send a copy or description to Ted Bourdon at email@example.com and he’ll make a summary report to us here, right Ted? Make sure you specify source, language, cost, etc., if applicable.
SPEAK FARSI? NOW YOU CAN LISTEN TO IT!
Harvey says ACTS and ROMANS are now available in audio cassette in the Farsi language. Both come in attractive packages with colorful J-cards. Acts is a set of 2 cassettes for $7.00 postpaid in USA. Romans is a single cassette, $5.00 postpaid in USA. Check it out (along with over 300 other languages) at http://www.audioscriptures.org/
YOUR RATES MIGHT HAVE JUST DOUBLED
Do you use Compuserve’s Infonet Network (INF) for connectivity to the Internet? If so, your rates might have just doubled. Compuserve just installed an across-the-board price increase for access via INF — from $10/hr. to $25/hr. For more info., see Sharon, our voluntary CServe guru, at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks Sharon!
GLOBAL GLIMPSE ON TAPE
world globe Through December 1997 more than 11.5 million records and cassettes were sent out from Gospel Recording’s Los Angeles base since 1938 when the first recording was done. In 1997 recordings were distributed in 1935 languages from this one base alone and shipped to 98 countries. Over 43,000 items were sent including over 6000 master cassettes for further reproduction. Recent breakthroughs for Gospel Recordings include distribution among two difficult-to-reach groups in China and Korean….
(Source: Update from Gospel Recordings USA eu822, 2/27/98. E-mail email@example.com or visit http://users.aol.com/glorenet for more information.)
Global Glimpse is compiled each week by John Hanna, Caleb Project, Littleton, CO.
FREE UNZIPPING SOFTWARE
Maurice recommends the freeware, WiZ version 4.01 for unzipping .zip files on a Win95/NT (instead of the shareware PKUnzip). The place to get it is http://www.cdrom.com/pub/infozip/WIN32/wiz401xN.exe. For MAC users, he recommends http://www.aladdinsys.com/expander/expander.html. As Maurice writes, “We do have better uses for our money…right?” :-) Thanks Maurice!
WebWatch This week’s web watch features a site still under construction, but very promising . . . http://www.travdoc.com. Check it out for a wealth of information including where to find good quality medical care in many countries, information about pregnancy care overseas (their specialty), various articles on different overseas medical needs, etc. A great resource for anyone travelling to (short-term missions) or planning to live in another country. Thanks Jim and Laurie!
DR. LIVINGSTONE (THE BOOK) WE PRESUME
A re-print of the popular book David Livingstone – the Truth Behind the Legend is available through http://www.cerbernet.co.uk/makeni/livingstone.htm . Written by a missionary doctor in Africa.
DON’T FORGET ABOUT REAL-TIME CHATTING, IF YOU DARE
If you’re into that sort of thing, try AOL Instant Messenger. It’s free at http://www.aol.com but does require that you be on-line at the same instant as the would-be recipient of your chat. As for me, I like email because I’m never sure of my exact schedule to be online… but for a family trying to get real-time communication going between the kids and the grandparents back home, this would be great stuff. Check it out! Thanks for reminding us, Jerry!
TO SUBSCRIBE — To subscribe to BRIGADA TODAY, send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
TO UNSUBSCRIBE — Send email to email@example.com. (Subject and text are ignored.)
IF IT DOESN’T WORK — Write Don & Judy, our Customer Services Managers at firstname.lastname@example.org. Yahooooo for volunteers!!!
COPYRIGHT — This issue of Brigada Today is Copyrighted © 2001. However, permission is granted to freely redistribute these materials, including those available through email autoresponders, provided that such redistribution is to those who will help the Good News of Christianity to reach the unreached. But please include this phrase: “For a free subscription of Brigada’s weekly missions publication, write .”
IMPORTANT: To copy or reproduce Brigada Today for any other reason is illegal and is not permitted.
DISCLAIMER — Please note that there’s no way we can possibly screen all the text on all the web sites or items we recommend. We try to check them out first… but if we miss something, please don’t assume that the opinions on those sites are identical to those of the Brigada family of networks. “Eat the corn, leave the cob!” ear of corn
For subscription questions or problems, write email@example.com.
SUBMITTING CONTENT — To submit content or ideas to Brigada Today, first please get a copy of “Guidelines for submitting items to Brigada” Then, once you’ve composed your item in keeping with those guidelines, send your item for Brigada Today to DLucas@teamexpansion.org.
Emphasis is placed on items relating to unreached peoples and challenges faced by those reaching them cross-culturally.
not symbolPLEASE DON’T SUBSCRIBE US TO YOUR LIST — It’s always better to ask before manually force-adding anyone to your list-serve or mailing list. Recently, tons of well-meaning people have been subscribing Doug to their lists. Since he often travels overseas, he doesn’t join many of those, for obvious reasons (like being charged big-time for overseas access). So as a general rule, please don’t bulk-mail us! See the note above if you’d like to submit items for Brigada Today. Thanks for understanding. Bottom line: We will never create Brigada Today items from bulk mail. Bulk mail gets deleted immediately — sorry. Nothing personal. We suggest you apply the same standard to everyone. Ask first!
OPCWARNING ABOUT FORWARDING EMAILS — Please, before forwarding any kind of request (even if it says “please send this to all your friends”), please check to make sure it has a VERIFIABLE ORIGIN, a VERIFIABLE PURPOSE, and a VERIFIABLE CLOSURE (OPC). By following this simple approach, many “email viruses” could be nipped in the bud… at least in the Brigada family. More information about the full Brigada OPC protocol is available. Thank you.
BRIGADA TODAY IS BROUGHT TO YOU BY THE FOLLOWING TEAM OF REGULAR VOLUNTEERS:
*Global Glimpses: John Hanna, Caleb Project, firstname.lastname@example.org
*Brigada Website: Bob Mayhew, WebServant@brigada.org
*Brigada Customer Service Manager: email@example.com
*Brigada Coordinator: Doug Lucas, Team Expansion & Brigada, DLucas@teamexpansion.org
*and many other occasional contributors too numerous to mention!
But thanks for working together! That’s the dream of Brigada!