In this issue…

1. TRAINING IN MICROFINANCE AND MICROENTERPRISE DEVELOPMENT
2. TALKING BIBLES – BECAUSE THEY NEED TO HEAR
3. MISSIONARIES GET FREE BLOG SITES…
4. MISSIONS PHOTOGRAPHERS: BE SEEN HERE!
5. MUSLIM MINISTRY TRAINING
6. GET INTERNET-BASED COUNSELING AND MORE
7. WHERE DO MISSIONS PASTORS FIND OUT ABOUT OPPORTUNITIES?
8. ONLINE CLASSROOM FOR STUDENTS OF ISLAM
9. HANDBOOK FOR HELPERS IN EMERGENCIES
10. PC MAG TOP 100 WEBSITES
11. DAVID HACKETT JOINS VISIONSYNERGY
12. URGENT NEED FOR TEACHERS IN THE PHILIPPINES
13. AMAZING FRIENDS HELP BRIGADA STAY AFLOAT
14. THE BACK PAGE: THE ART OF FINISHING
15. CLOSING STUFF

1. TRAINING IN MICROFINANCE AND MICROENTERPRISE DEVELOPMENT — The Chalmers Center’s fourth annual Christian Economic Development Institute (CEDI) will be held at Covenant College, Lookout Mountain, GA, June 13 – June 18, 2005. During CEDI, you will learn how to facilitate economic and spiritual transformation in low-income and disadvantaged communities. This training equips you with practical, church-centered, and field-tested economic development strategies and programs. These strategies and programs help the poor to become financially self-sufficient through their own work, while at the same time provide you with opportunity for outreach and evangelism. Training focuses on microenterprise development, savings-led microfinance programs, rotating savings and credit associations, providing small business training to low-income entrepreneurs, and developing partnerships with large microfinance institutions. If you are unable to attend the June CEDI, consider receiving training through their email- based distance learning classes. To learn more, visit their web site at http://www.chalmers.org You can also call them at 706-419-1805 or email chalmers(at)covenant(dot)edu [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address, please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]
2. TALKING BIBLES – BECAUSE THEY NEED TO HEAR — Now you can learn more about the efforts of Talking Bibles International and its partner, World Mission. Just visit http://www.talkingbibles.org and click on the link at the far right, ‘See the Talking Bible in Action – watch the video’. Regardless of where you are in the world, you’ll be able to watch this ministry at work, providing entire New Testaments inside the Talking Bibles.
3. MISSIONARIES GET FREE BLOG SITES… — at http://www.solidhope.com You can choose from several templates, privacy settings, and more. Check it out!
4. MISSIONS PHOTOGRAPHERS: BE SEEN HERE! — Now there’s a great gathering place for Christian mission photographers to get the word out about their gifts and skills. Just log on at http://www.photomission.com and you’ll see what we mean. Doesn’t matter what country you’re from or how much your camera cost. If you’ve got talent — show it here! Get noticed! (You can even sell some of your missions photos.)
5. MUSLIM MINISTRY TRAINING — Now you can take in a complete course on Islam in Boulder, Colorado taught by an international, multi ethnic team from Yemen, Iran, Iraq, Egypt, Lebanon, and the USA from Muslim, Jewish and Christian backgrounds. The schedule looks like this:

June 6-10 Inside Islam, history, theology, Muhammad. June 13-17 Quran, Hadith, Sharia, Fundamentalism. June 20-24 Folk Islam, breaking strongholds. June 27-July 1, Culture, Church planting, Discipleship.

An evangelism workshop featuring case studies form different fields is offered daily. Introduction to Arabic language, daily. HIS-TIME combines the academic with the practical. The facility is close to the beautiful rocky mountains allowing for weekend recreational activities. Call 303-442-3333 or visit http://www.histime.org or email main(at)horizonsinternational(dot)org [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]
6. GET INTERNET-BASED COUNSELING AND MORE — Missionary Outreach Support Services (MOSS) is an organization under the leadership of the Regent University Doctor of Psychology program. MOSS seeks to serve Christian Missionaries and their families, both at home and abroad, by providing internet-based consulting and psycho-educational services. Psychological trainees provide the services under the supervision of licensed psychologists and in the context of a Christian worldview. The services are offered at a reduced rate to provide missionaries with quality care that they can afford to use while serving on the mission field. For more information: http://www.missionaryoutreach.net
7. WHERE DO MISSIONS PASTORS FIND OUT ABOUT OPPORTUNITIES? — We know about sites that let missionaries know about open doors and unreached peoples. But where do missions pastors find news about open doors for *their* skills? If you have resources or know where these folks find out about open missions pastor opportunities, write Mark about it: MarkStephens@adelphia.net He’ll share the final report with the rest of us. Thanks Mark!
8. ONLINE CLASSROOM FOR STUDENTS OF ISLAM — To help propel missions education into the 21st century, Caleb Project recently debuted an on- line classroom designed to augment the Encountering the World of Islam (EWI) course. The http://www.encounteringislam.org on-line classroom features additional relevant readings, extensive course resources, and an electronic forum where students can wrestle with the ideas of the course. As the Muslim world continues to headline global news through peace efforts, wars, and natural disasters, Caleb Project’s Encountering the World of Islam course has grown. The course is designed to help Christians understand Islam and prepare to interact in loving and authentic ways with Muslims. In addition to providing resources and readings, the on-line classroom facilitates these purposes by providing a secure forum for student interaction. EWI students can post thoughts and questions about the course, learn from each other, and pursue community after the course. The EWI on-line classroom is a prototype for additional on-line education efforts. Plans are underway for on-line supplements for Perspectives on the World Christian Movement and Perspectives Exposure courses as well as Crossing Cultures, an eye-opening weekend workshop that will expose churches to the needs of ethnic communities in their neighborhoods.
9. HANDBOOK FOR HELPERS IN EMERGENCIES — Here’s a new handbook on debriefing, very relevant for the member care and mission community. “Working Through Trauma – Supporting Staff Responding to Emergencies” This handbook was written for People In Aid by Dr Debbie Lovell-Hawker, Clinical Psychologist at Oxford University and mission/aid consultant. The focus is how to cope with aid-sector trauma, and it includes specific reference to the Asian tsunami and practical tools. Costs: £7.50 members, £10 non-members. Contact: info(at)peopleinaid(dot)org [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]
10. PC MAG TOP 100 WEBSITES – Now you can download the whole list of top 100 websites. (Actually, there are 3 versions… so close to *300* site.) Just go to: http://go.pcmag.com/top100websites then click on the last half of the sentence, “Get our downloadable favorites file!” Then click on check plus “Download Now: Top100installable.zip”. Extract this file, then follow the instructions to add these sites to your presence on the web. This should jump-start your web-link library, … if you’re into that sort of thing. :-)
11. DAVID HACKETT JOINS VISIONSYNERGY — VisionSynergy announced this past week that David Hackett is joining its staff as associate director beginning May 1st. Based in Edmonds, Wash., VisionSynergy is a networking strategy ministry dedicated to helping churches and mission organizations around the world collaborate and network to maximize their potential impact for the global Church. “We are thrilled that Dave will bring his skills to the work of helping the local/global Church work together in Kingdom collaboration,” says Phill Butler, director of visionSynergy. … See http://www.visionsynergy.net or write dhackett(at)visionsynergy(dot)net for more information. [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]
12. URGENT NEED FOR TEACHERS IN THE PHILIPPINES — Joy Christian Academy, a small K-8 grade MK school based in Cebu City, Philippines is in desperate need for teachers for the 2005-2006 school year. Staffing levels are critical and the need is urgent. Teachers need to raise support but a single teacher could live comfortably on $1,200 / month. For any information or leads please contact Les jca(at)missionphilippines(dot)org
13. AMAZING FRIENDS HELP BRIGADA STAY AFLOAT — Thanks to the amazing friends who are helping us get Brigada out the door and onto your screen! This past week, hats off to the folks at Bellevue Baptist Church in Arlington, TN, who pitched $50 into the mix for the cost of Brigada’s website, our Brigada-sponsored secretary, and more. Thanks Bellvue!

Thanks, too, to the anonymous missionary in Africa who wishes to let other photographers (pro or amateur) know about the online Photomission.com community.” We appreciate you Photomission.com!

And finally, thanks to Visual Impact Design for their gift of $25. Their newest project is SolidHope.com, where missionaries can find a free blogging site in a Christian blogging environment. Thanks Linda and all at Visual Impact!

Would you like to chip in to help make Brigada’s ministry possible? If so, just click here.
14. THE BACK PAGE: THE ART OF FINISHING — What’s the difference between “finishing” and the alternative? In soccer, sometimes it’s inches. The striker unleashes a rocket of a shot that misses by just inches and the whole stadium erupts in a sorrowful sign of regret.

In life, it’s the same.

The farmer who never quite finishes cleaning out the barn. The engineer who, in the end, never quite delivers the architectural drawings he promised to do for his local church. They finally give up and hire a “real” architect.

Are you in one of those situations? Always intending to finish writing that correspondence course… never quite time. You know you have to turn in information for your W-2, but you’re 3 months late and now you’re in trouble with Financial Director at the “home office.”

Well if you’re one of those statistics, take heart, for hope lies just around the corner. No matter how far behind you are, you can always wake up and make up your mind that today is a fresh start.

Last week, ladies and gentlemen, [drum roll] I finally finished the next stage of my doctoral dissertation. I can’t even remember how many years I’ve been meaning to complete these chapters. I’d start and restart, but something always took precedence. Then came March 2005. “Click.” Something turned on inside of me. And now, the past is the past… and the future is the future!

Is it a good feeling? Well — Duh! :-) As I sealed carefully written 100 pages or so and slipped them into the FedEx drop box, I was thinking, “Sure they’ll tell me everything I did wrong… but who cares! :-) I’m making progress now.”

How do we manage to get “off the mark” and churn through a project like this? Stay tuned for 5 tips next week. In the meantime, be careful out there. It’s a jungle that wants to suck in all your projects so you never complete them. :-)

Doug

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