Tag Archives: Madison Park Church of God

Comfort Zones Stretched, A Harbor for Women Gained

Photo: A creative welcome to Dove Harbor.

By Karen Roberts

“Have You Ever…” is a game I play with a class I teach. It begins innocently enough, with an easy question, and then it moves into more challenging ones. Let’s try it. Have you ever…gone sledding? Have you ever…had to sleep in your car? Have you ever…knowingly talked with a homeless person? Those who answered yes are ready for more. Have you ever…volunteered somewhere out of your comfort zone? Have you ever…donated material items or money to a food pantry? Have you ever…shared a meal with someone living in a shelter? Continue reading

Scrubbing Away Mom’s Stress: Churches Reach Out with MOPS

Photo: MOPS ministry at Madison Park Church of God.

By Karen Roberts

An older woman approached the MOPS display table in the foyer of a local Church of God. “So, are you selling cleaning products?” she asked. Her question is common. The answer is surprising. No, it’s not a floor product company. Yes, it’s a group for moms with small children that meets in local host churches to teach and encourage women—literally all around the world. Many Church of God congregations are discovering the power of the ministry to reach new families in their community. Continue reading

Children of Promise Celebrates 25 Years of Hope

Photo: Children of Promise blessings in Tanzania.

By Emily Ploetz

Bishu was a young boy who lived with his family in the remote rice fields of eastern India, in a state called Odisha. His family worked alongside many other families from sunrise to sunset in the rice fields, earning only thirty to forty cents per day. Somehow, Bishu’s family went into debt to the landowner. This put the landowner in control of their home and ultimately, their lives. The only way the family could pay back the landowner was to sell Bishu as a slave. Paul Maxfield, director of Children of Promise, was traveling in Bishu’s village in 2010 and heard about his story when he did not show up for a scheduled interview. After many prayers and hard work with local volunteers, Bishu was released from slavery. Three years later, Paul had the chance to talk with Bishu. He asked him, “What is the most important thing that has happened in your life?” To this day, Paul has never forgotten Bishu’s answer: “The day Children of Promise rescued me.” Continue reading

Creativity, Generosity, Boldness Characterize Easter Celebrations

Photo: Lord’s Supper drama at First Church, Inverness, Florida.

By Carl Stagner

As a pinnacle in the church year, some might get the feeling that it’s all downhill from Easter. But perhaps Pastor Paul Strozier of Madison Park Church of God in Anderson, Indiana, said it best last year in an article he wrote: “The baskets have returned to the attic, the plastic eggs are being recycled, somewhere in the house there is at least one purple Peep left unconsumed—at least until the toddler finds it…But can we really let the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ wait a whole year to be acknowledged and celebrated again? Easter never ends for the follower of Jesus Christ…Imagine how it might change our homes, our families, and our communities if we lived every day with resurrection power, hope, and joy.” For Church of God congregations across the country, Easter has only just begun! Here’s a look at how churches observed Easter week. Continue reading

Indiana Church Offers Ministry for Children of Divorced Parents

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Photo: Madison Park Church of God

By Karen Roberts

It started about a week after Noah’s dad left. Fear like nothing he’d ever experienced before. Unable to sleep. Unable to concentrate at school. It felt as if he were dying, and his dad was no longer there to help. Where was his dad?

Noah’s mom didn’t understand what was happening to her seven-year-old son. She was devastated by her own immediate circumstances. She needed a full-time job. The aging van was on its last legs. What would happen to the family home if she couldn’t keep up with the mortgage payments? She knew she needed an attorney, but she had no money to hire one.

And then a caring friend told her about DivorceCare for Kids (DC4K). Continue reading

Reclaim 2016 Anderson: ‘Sense of Oneness’, ‘So Good’, ‘One of the Best’

By Carl Stagner

Those who thought it simply couldn’t get any better were wrong. Dead wrong. After two outstanding Church of God Conventions in Oklahoma City, featuring compelling content, rich worship experiences, and opportunities to be bold in Jesus’ name, three smaller-scale, regional events would bridge the gap during the off-years. They would satisfy our need as the Church of God to stay connected to each other and the ongoing collective ministries of the movement. They would inspire and challenge, but they would also come on the heels of two gatherings in Oklahoma City that had effectively raised the bar. It is a mistake to discount the power of the Holy Spirit to do exceedingly above all that we ask or think! The first two Regional Conferences have stirred in the hearts of those who have attended a Jesus-centered focus and an elevated passion for kingdom advancement. As convention-goers made their way back home from Anderson, they realized a renewed determination to reclaim what hell has stolen. Continue reading

Anderson Regional Day 1: Returning to Our Reclamation Roots

By Carl Stagner

In 1881, it had become painfully obvious that hell had stolen heaven’s ideal of God’s one, holy church. Where culture and government built dividing walls, the Church of God had the audacity to build bridges. Walking by faith and not by sight, our pioneers worked together to deposit into others the truth which had been deposited into them. They didn’t always see the results of their labor, and they could not have imagined the global movement that is the Church of God today. But they faithfully invested in the kingdom, and knew that unity meant working together—not just agreeing together. At the kickoff session of the Church of God Regional Convention in Anderson, the visible results of past investments into the kingdom were celebrated, offering the crowd of nearly 1,000 a blueprint for reclamation. Continue reading

Reclaim 2016: Welcome Back to Anderson, Church of God!

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By Carl Stagner

On the afternoon of Monday, June 20, a group of pastors, retired ministers, missionaries, Anderson University professors, and laypeople packed into a makeshift theater to watch a multimedia presentation of the early days of the Church of God in Anderson. They were reminded that since 1907, the Church of God has had a longstanding relationship with the city of Anderson. After a couple incredible conventions in Oklahoma City, and a historic gathering in Vancouver earlier this year, Church of God people are returning to a city with over a century of rich camp meeting history. More rich history will be made again this week as Church of God people once again reconvene in Anderson, Indiana. Continue reading

It’s Convention Time Again in Indiana

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By Carl Stagner

It’s beginning to look a lot like convention time in Indiana again. As the season of summer approaches, the corn and soybeans have sprouted, squirrels are scurrying across the Anderson University campus, and Madison Park Church of God is making final preparation to host the second of three Regional Conventions this year. You’ve already heard that Milton Grannum, Reggie McNeal, Steve Arterburn, Arnetta McNeese Bailey, and Ben Hardman will speak to the convention theme of Reclaim Your Neighbor[hood], and you know that Alanna Story will serve as worship leaders. But did you know that a variety of special gatherings, receptions, and opportunities for additional fellowship are scheduled to take place in conjunction with the Anderson event? From alumni luncheons to agency open houses, you’ll want to plan ahead to make the most of your Reclaim 2016 experience. Continue reading

Convention Artists Equip Church of God with New Worship Resource

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By Carl Stagner

These young women and men are not in it for the entertainment. If they were, you might see them come and go, offering little more than a performance. But these featured worship leaders for the Regional Conventions and IYC2016 are going way beyond providing convention-goers with a temporary worship experience. Alanna Story, products of the Church of God themselves, have set out to resource the Church of God with practical tools for the local church. Continue reading

Church of God Ministries Welcomes Becky Arthur

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Church of God Ministries is pleased to announce Becky Arthur as administrative assistant for the general director’s office. She is assuming the responsibilities previously held by Joni Burnett, as Joni transitions to an expanded management role at Church of God Ministries. Becky served with Jim Lyon at Madison Park Church of God for seventeen years. Continue reading