Musical Inspiration To Fill the Summer Air

Written by Terry DeBoer on . Posted in Local

jasonJason Crabb sings Aug. 13 in Grand HavenCampgrounds, conference facilities, and other venues in West Michigan are finalizing preparations for their summertime inspirational concert series.

Maranatha Bible Conference in Muskegon, Worship On The Waterfront in downtown Grand Haven, Sandy Pines Lakeside Chapel in Dorr, Gospel Music Barn in Hudsonville, and the Christian Reformed Conference Grounds on Lakeshore Dr. between Holland and Grand Haven all feature weekend concerts that are open to the public on a free-will-offering basis. (Details below).

And for Memorial Day weekend, the music is already underway.

Walk For Life Opportunity to Band Together in Prayer, Support Local PRC

Written by Paul R. Kopenkoskey on . Posted in Local

prcwalk1Previously, Walk for Life started at Cathedral Square; this year’s begins at La Grave Christian Reformed Church. The Pregnancy Resource Center (PRC) invites the pro-life public to take a walk with them over Father's Day weekend.

The PRC's annual Walk For Life on June 17 is an opportunity for people to band together in prayer, raise needed funds for the pro-life nonprofit founded in 1985 and experience the contrast between light and darkness.

"The Walk is about building awareness and saying to the community, 'We're here,'" said Jim Sprague, the PRC's chief executive officer.

Singer Brings Life to Her Music

Written by Terry DeBoer on . Posted in Local

plumbTiffany Arbuckle Lee (better known as Plumb) watched her best-known song take on a completely new meaning.

Plumb's 2012 power ballad "Need You Now (How Many Times)" - with its Psalm-like longing for God's help - was originally written about her struggles with anxiety, panic attacks and depression.

"But it was soon afterward that my husband and I separated," she recalled of the tumultuous period which her marriage eventually survived. "The meaning actually turned around for me and I became a listener to my own song. I now needed God more than ever before."

Plumb and her band perform Saturday May 20 at Rock the Coast, a two day Christian music mini-festival at the Ottawa County Fairgrounds also featuring David Crowder, Josh Wilson and others.

Molly Klimas Wraps Arms Around Women Caught in Unintended Pregnancies

Written by Paul R. Kopenkoskey on . Posted in Local

prc 2017Molly Klimas: “I can’t imagine life without her. I have no regrets.” Molly Klimas was 20 years old and on the cusp of starting her senior year at St. Joseph College in Rensselaer, Indiana when she felt the need to keep a white-knuckle grip on the hope she wasn't pregnant.

That was 31 years ago.

Raised in a Roman Catholic family where she is the oldest of eight siblings, Klimas was engaged to her fiancé, Paul Klimas.

Affirmation Is Never Too Extreme

Written by Dan Seaborn on . Posted in Local

dan seabornI remember a night when one of our sons was sixteen-years-old and had told us that he would be home by 10:00. At 10:10, he was nowhere to be seen, and I was starting to get nervous. With every second that ticked on the clock, I worried more and more.

The typical parent, I assumed the absolute worst. I wonder how bad the accident was. Which hospital would he be in? I hope the other kids weren't hurt too.

Concerned, I dialed his cell phone. He answered right away, to my relief. Keeping my voice calm, I addressed the situation. "Son, it's a little later than you said you'd be home. Where are you?"

He hesitated. "Do I have to tell you?" he asked.

New Music Review: Forrest Wakeman

Written by Terry DeBoer on . Posted in Local

messesWest Michigan's multi-talented Forrest Wakeman has a new worship recording featuring a host of area musicians.

"Messes to Miracles" is a polished effort filled with contemporary ballads and anthems suitable for corporate or personal worship.

Wakeman, who has several advanced music degrees and is music director at Blythefield Hills Baptist Church in Rockford, wrote all the songs and co-produced the CD with long time area worship leader Andy Ferris.

Access of West Michigan Annual Hunger Walk Celebrates 40th Year of Supporting Good Food!

Written by WMCN Editor on . Posted in Local

EVENTSTie up those shoe laces and grab your friends, the Access of West Michigan 40th Annual Hunger Walk is coming to downtown Grand Rapids on Sunday, May 7. Registration and food festival - including live music, a food truck, activities for kids and more - begins at 1:30p.m. at Park Church, 10 E Park Pl NE, Grand Rapids. The walk begins in stride at 2:15p.m.

Since 1977, the Hunger Walk has raised over $6 million for local and international organizations promoting a thriving food system through the support of thousands of individuals, businesses and congregations.

Chonda Pierce on May 5

Written by WMCN Editor on . Posted in Local

EVENTSEmmy®-nominated comedian Chonda Pierce is set to bring her "Happily Laugher After" tour to Wyoming's Grand Rapids First Assembly of God (2100 44th St SW) on Friday May 5 at 7:00 PM. The best-selling female comedian of all time, Pierce will deliver an uplifting and encouraging night of joy and laughter, armed with her unpretentious Southern charm and laser sharp wit. The evening will also feature special guest acclaimed singer/songwriter Karyn Williams.

Church Planter Makes 137th Trip to Ukraine, Sees Revived Hunger for Gospel

Written by Paul R. Kopenkoskey on . Posted in Local

rich c Rich Correll: “I look for people who have dirty hands and dirty feet.”There are a handful of reasons why Rich Correll is an unlikely person to make his 137th trip to the Ukraine to establish new churches.

By his own admission, when he launched Church Planters' Training International (CPTI) in 1992 as founder and president, Correll had no prior theological or church planting experience. In his earlier years he worked for Bethlehem Steel as a sales manager (1967-1988), selling the alloy to some of the area's largest manufacturers in West Michigan.

Plus, he doesn't speak the East Slavic native language, Ukrainian, nor does he dialogue in Russian that nearly 30 percent of Ukrainians speak, nor does he know any of the 40 minority languages and dialects spoken in the Eastern European nation.

Singer Doesn’t Mind Role as “Opener”

Written by Terry DeBoer on . Posted in Local

Feliz JordanJordan Feliz Since his childhood days, singer songwriter Jordan Feliz was aware of million-selling Christian music artist Michael W. Smith.

"My parents own every record he ever made," said Feliz, 28, of the veteran Smith. "I never thought I'd ever be able to share the stage with him."

The relative newcomer Feliz is an opening artist on Smith's current tour, coming to downtown Grand Rapids at 20 Monroe Live on Sat. April 29.

"I feel like my childhood experience of listening to CDs in my parents' car is being lived out right now," he smiled.

Smith, 59, needs no introduction to Christian music fans. More than two dozen albums, nearly three dozen No. 1 songs, and various collaboration projects have left an indelible mark for the Gospel Music Hall of Fame member.

Authors Record Year-long Experiment in Radical Change

Written by Ann Byle on . Posted in Local

year of small thingsThe Arthur and Wasinger families spent a year changing their lives a bit at a time; and together they recorded that year in the new book "The Year of Small Things: Radical Faith for the Rest of Us" by Sarah Arthur and Erin F. Wasinger. The authors will speak and sign books at Baker Book House at 7 pm Thursday, April 27.

Arthur, author of several other books, originally pitched the book as one family's year-long practice of new monasticism in suburbia. Then Tom and Sarah Arthur met Erin and Dave Wasinger and asked them to be part of the journey.

"We formed a covenantal relationship with the Wasingers," said Sarah Arthur. "It's a whole different thing when close friends know what you're doing and challenge you, asking you the hard questions."

The goal was to engage in the 12 marks of new monasticism, a lifestyle espoused by the likes of Shane Claiborne and others.

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