HAPPENINGS

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NATIONAL URBAN MINISTRY ANNUAL CONFERENCE COMING TO ABILENE

NATIONAL URBAN MINISTRY CONFERENCE
When: Thursday-Feb. 24
Where: Highland Church of Christ
Registration: http://www.nationalurbanministryassociation.org (Click on appropriate registration link)

The annual National Urban Ministry conference. will be held Feb. 22-24 at Highland Church of Christ. Registration information is available on the website, http://www.nationalurbanministryassociation.org Costs range from free for students to $25 for local nonprofit and church groups.

The conference is being hosted by Highland and FaithWorks, headed by Joyce Dalzell, a member of Highland. Among the speakers will be Joe Harbin Jr., president of the National Urban Ministry Association in Memphis, Tennessee; Anthony Williams, mayor of Abilene; Jerry Taylor, an associate Bible professor at Abilene Christian University; Jackie Halstead, chief executive officer of the Selah Center for Spiritual Formation; and Richard Beck, psychology professor at ACU.

The conference will begin Thursday with a poverty simulation workshop in which participants role-play the lives of low-income families.

CAFE CONVERSATION TO EXPLORE HUMAN NATURE

The February meeting of Cafe Conversation, a spinoff of the Abilene Interfaith Council, will be 7:30-9 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 22, at Mezamiz Coffee House, 3909 S. Seventh St.

The conversation will focus on human nature, exploring issues such as whether humans are good or bad, free will, and how faith traditions address those issues. The public is invited.

CURRIE-STRICKLAND LECTURES AT HOWARD PAYNE UNIVERSITY
BROWNWOOD — The Rev. Suzii Paynter, executive coordinator of Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, will present the 11th annual Currie-Strickland Distinguished Lectures in Christian Ethics at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 15, and 10 a.m. Friday, Feb. 16, at Howard Payne University in Brownwood. Theme will be “Women’s Leadership, Global Mission, and Course Correction.” Both lectures take place in the Richard and Wanda Jackson Conference Room of the Paul and Jane Meyer Faith and Life Leadership Center.

Admission is free to the public, but reservations are requested. For reservations, contact currie-strickland@hputx.edu or 325-649-8403. For information, go to hputx.edu/curriestrickland.

LOCAL CHURCHES HOSTING ASH WEDNESDAY SERVICES 

  • Ash Wednesday services will begin at noon and 7 p.m. Wednesday at Episcopal Church of the Heavenly Rest, 602 Meander St. The services will include imposition of ashes and Holy Eucharist.
  • Ash Wednesday services will begin at 12:15 p.m. Wednesday at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, 3150 Vogel Ave. The service will include imposition of ashes and Holy Eucharist.
  • Ash Wednesday services with the imposition of ashes will be 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at Grace Lutheran Church, 1202 S. Pioneer Dr. A meal will be served beginning at 5:30 p.m.
  • Ash Wednesday services will begin at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at Westminster Presbyterian Church, 4515 S. 14th St. The service will include the imposition of ashes.

SHABBAT SERVICE SCHEDULED AT TEMPLE MIZPAH
A Shabbat service, led by Dr. Marc Orner, will begin at 7 p.m. Friday at Temple Mizpah, 849 Chestnut St. The Women’s Auxiliary will conduct an oneg Shabbat following services. For information, call 325-672-8225.

ROBERT ELLIS NEW DEAN AT LOGSDON SCHOOL OF THEOLOGY
Robert Ellis has moved from interim dean to dean of the Logsdon School of Theology at Hardin-Simmons University. His appointment was effective Feb. 1. He replaces Donald Williford, who retired. Ellis will be the fourth dean at Logsdon since its beginnings in the 1980s. Ellis will be responsible for a wide scope of theological education and ministry preparation, including Logsdon Seminary programs, which span across Texas through extension campuses in San Antonio, Dallas-Ft. Worth, Corpus Christi, McAllen, and Lubbock.

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Dr. Robert Ellis

Ellis earned a bachelor of science degree in religion at Hardin-Simmons in 1977. He has both master of divinity and doctor of philosophy degrees from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Ellis also has done post-doctoral study at the University of Cambridge and is the author of numerous publications, including the widely used “Learning to Read Biblical Hebrew: An Introductory Grammar” (Baylor University Press, 2006). In 1992, Ellis was named a Distinguished Alumnus of Logsdon. His wife, Teresa, is the theological librarian for Logsdon.

HEAVENLY REST SELECTS INTERIM PASTOR

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Douglas Travis

Douglas Travis of Dallas will begin his service as interim rector of the Episcopal Church of the Heavenly Rest on Ash Wednesday. He will serve until the church calls its new rector to replace Luke Back, who will be the new rector of the Church of the Holy Spirit in Lake Forest, Illinois, a part of the Episcopal Diocese of Chicago. For six years, Travis was dean and president of the Episcopal Seminary of the Southwest in Austin. He is a former rector of Trinity Church in The Woodlands and St. James Church in Dallas. He and his wife, Pamela, an attorney with

the Environmental Protection Agency, have been married for 40 years and are the parents of two adult daughters.

LIFE OF THE LATE REV. LEO SCOTT TO BE CELEBRATED
A celebration and remembrance of the life of the late Rev. Leo Scott will be held at 6 p.m. Monday, Feb. 12, at the National Center for Children’s Illustrated Literature, 102 Cedar St. Refreshments will be served at the event, which is free and open to the public. Scott was pastor of Oak Grove Baptist Church in Hamlin for 14 years and pastor of New Light Missionary Baptist Church in Abilene for 13 years, retiring in 1999. He died in December 2009 at age 76. Scott retired as director of the pharmacy at what is now Abilene State Supported Living Center after 28 years. He was the first black person elected to the Abilene City Council and the first black pharmacist in Abilene. Participants in Tuesday’s observance include Anthony Williams, who became Abilene’s first black mayor when he was elected in May 2017, former Police Chief Melvin Martin, and Nita Slaton, operations director of the Community Foundation of Abilene. Area choirs and pastors also will participate.

ABILENE INTERFAITH COUNCIL MONTHLY MEETING 
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Douglas Foster

Douglas Foster, professor of church history at Abilene Christian University, will present the program for the February meeting of the Abilene Interfaith Council. The meeting will begin at noon Monday, Feb. 12, at the Episcopal Church of the Heavenly Rest, 602 Meander St. Foster will speak on “The Global Ecumenical Movement,” describing developments in Christian ecumenical relations in the 20th century and major trends in the 21st century. The meeting is free to the public. Pizza will be available for purchase.

SHABBAT SERVICE AT TEMPLE MIZPAH
Marc Orner will lead a Shabbat service at Temple Mizpah, 849 Chestnut St., at 7 p.m. Feb. 16. The Women’s Auxiliary will host an oneg Shabbat after the service. For more information cal325-672-8225.
ST. LUKE ORTHODOX PRE-LENTEN RETREAT ON EVANGELISM
Father Joseph Huneycutt, pastor of St. Joseph of St. Joseph Orthodox Church in Houston, will lead a pre-Lenten retreat on evangelism at St. Luke Orthodox Church, 501 Sunset Drive, Feb. 6-7. The program for both evenings begins at 6 p.m. with a prayer service and meal.  Huneycutt will speak at 7 p.m. The topic for Feb. 6 is “Evangelism in the Early Church.” The Feb. 7 topic will be, “How Do Orthodox Evangelize?” For more information, call the church office at 675-9922.

TULSA MINISTER TO SERVE AS INTERIM AT FIRST CHRISTIAN CHURCH
Susan Payne of Tulsa will serve as interim pastor of First Christian Church until a replacement can be found for Don Wilson, who left in November. She will begin Feb. 1. Payne has a master of divinity from Phillips Theological Seminary and special training for transitional ministry. Her responsibilities have included preaching, pastoral care, and church administration.

FORT WORTH BISHOP VISITS ABILENE’S HOLY CROSS ANGLICAN CHURCH
Jack Iker, bishop of the Anglican Church of North America’s Fort Worth Diocese, will be in Abilene Jan. 28 for a 10:30 a.m. service at Holy Cross Anglican Church, which meets in Carleton Chapel at McMurry University. The local congregation is led by Bryan Stewart, a McMurry religion professor.

HOUSES FOR HEALING CELEBRATES TWO-DAY GRAND OPENING 

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This tiny house on north Hickory street is one of several built by Sonrise Ministries to be a Healing House for families getting long-term medical care. Photo courtesy Sonrise Ministries

Houses for Healing will hold an open house at the Sweetwater Area House located at 3052 N. Hickory St., Abilene. The two-day event will take place Wednesday and Thursday, Jan. 17 and 18 from to a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

The grand opening will showcase the 392 square-foot. “tiny houses,” purposed to benefit area residents who are in need of short-term housing in Abilene while a family member undergoes medical treatment. Future house will be for residents of other area communities. 

HOUSES FOR HEALING FINAL PRINT2Houses for Healing is a ministry of Sonrise Ministries, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit ministry providing tiny houses to the surrounding Big Country for the purpose of caring for the sick and loving our neighbors. Each tiny house will be adopted by local Abilene congregations to offer a venue to the greater Body of Christ across denominational lines for engaging in local missions and outreach while bringing unity in purpose through service.

Mission Statement: Our mission is to care for the sick by providing temporary housing to those who are receiving long-term medical treatment away from home. We are expressing the healing love and grace of Jesus Christ through individuals, businesses and churches across denominational lines bringing unity by connecting Good Samaritans.

 

McMURRY RELIGION PROFESSOR LEADS PUBLIC CLASS ‘MY NEIGHBOR’S FAITH’

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Mark Waters

Mark Waters, religion professor and director of the Center for International Education at McMurry University, will lead a spring forum on the world’s religions on Mondays, Jan. 22 through April, at the Episcopal Church of the Heavenly Rest, 602 Meander St. A resource book, “My Neighbor’s Faith, will be available for purchase. Classes will meet at 7 p.m. in Gerhart Hall.

 

 

1 KINGDOM HOSTS ‘EXALT’ AT CONVENTION CENTER

1 Kingdom will host “Exalt,” a citywide worship and prayer service at 6 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 28, at the Abilene Convention Center, 1100 N. Sixth St. Their poster says, “Join us for a citywide worship experience as the body of Christ comes together to exalt the name of Jesus.” For more information, call 795-2222 or go to http://www.1-kingdom.org

FINANCIAL PEACE UNIVERSITY 
Several churches will begin new classes in January for Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University. Listed on Ramsey’s website are Pioneer Drive Baptist Church (pdbc.org), Jan. 7; Elmcrest Baptist Church (elmcrestbaptist.com), Feb. 11; and Texas Avenue Baptist Church (Facebook page), Jan. 8. The nine-week course teaches students how to eliminate debt, save for the future, and to increase giving. Cost is $93. Contact churches to enroll or to get more information.

‘JEWS OF WEST TEXAS’ INTERFAITH COUNCIL PRESENTATION
“The Jews of West Texas” will be the topic for the January meeting of the Abilene Interfaith Council. Suzanne Campbell, head of special collections at Angelo State University, will be the presenter. The meeting will begin at noon Jan. 9 at the library branch in the Mall of Abilene. The public is invited. Pizza lunch will be available by donation. For more information call 325-692-3353.

‘ASSORTED NUTS’ INVITES READERS INTO THE LIFE OF A SPECIAL PERSON

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‘ASSORTED NUTS’ BOOK SIGNING
WHEN: 3 p.m. Friday, Jan. 12
WHERE: Room 108, Moody Center, Hardin-Simmons University
WHO: Author Jan Eastland and Dr. Lanny Hall, HSU chancellor who facilitated the publishing of the book
Cost: $20 for signed book


Jan Eastland was discouraged from enrolling in high school because of cerebral palsy. She did so anyway. Then, after 17 years of hard work and study, she earned a degree in sociology from Hardin-Simmons University. Now, at age 74, she is a published author, thanks to Lanny Hall, chancellor and former two-time president of HSU, and others he enlisted to help. Hall helped to facilitate the publishing of “Assorted Nuts,” the name Eastland chose for her memoir, through Amazon’s CreateSpace. Both will be present for a book signing at 3 p.m. Friday, Jan. 12, at Hardin-Simmons.

‘TEN CULTURES, TWENTY LIVES’ TELLS BOOK LAUNCH JAN. 21

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Cover of “Ten Cultures, Twenty Lives.” Photo by Nick Kloster

‘TEN CULTURES, TWENTY LIVES’ BOOK SIGNING
WHEN: 4-5:30 p.m. Jan. 21
WHERE: South branch of the Abilene Public Library, Mall of Abilene
WHO: Author Daina Jurika-Owen, storytellers who will read from the book

Daina Jurika-Owen will launch her new book, “Ten Cultures, Twenty Lives,” 4-5:30 p.m. Jan. 21 at the south branch of the Abilene Public Library in the Mall of Abilene.

The book is a collection of stories by refugees, in their own words, who were resettled in Abilene. At the book launch, storytellers will read from some of the stories. The launch also will include a question and answer session with the author, who lives in Abilene and is a former refugee resettlement professional. She is a native of Riga, Latvia.

TEMPLE MIZPAH SHABBAT SERVICES JAN. 19
Dr. Marc Orner will lead Shabbat services at Temple Mizpah, 849 Chestnut St., at 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 19. The women’s auxiliary will host an oneg Shabbat following the service. For more information, call 672-8225

 

PRISCILLA SHIRER BIBLE CLASS

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Priscilla Shirer

Highland Church of Christ, 425 Highland Ave., will be hosting a ladies Monday evening Bible study on Gideon by Priscilla Shirer beginning Jan. 22., 22nd6:30-7:30 p.m. in Room 110. RSVP to  to: tammy@highlandchurch.org  A graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary, Shirer holds amaster’s degree in biblical studies and considers it a privilege to serve believers from every denomination and culture by helping them to know the truths of Scripture intellectually and encouraging them to experience these truths practically by the power of the Holy Spirit. For more information, to to her website http://www.goingbeyond.com

 

 

SHARE YOUR GRIEF IN PDBC SUPPORT SESSIONS
GriefShare is a weekly support group at Pioneer Drive Baptist Church that offers help and encouragement after the death of a loved one. The first meeting will be 3-5 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 23, in Room 114. Facilitator is Omer Hancock. Cost is $15 for the workbook. Scholarships are available. Call 325-692-6776 to register or for more information.