Reporter and section editor for The Christian Post.
Posted 5/1/15 at 1:06 AM | Alex Murashko
Ray Adamyk’s face lights up when he talks about his restoration company’s completed projects that include the comeback stories of historic gems like the Catalina Casino on the small island off the coast of Los Angeles in Avalon, and Hollywood’s Roosevelt Hotel and El Capitan Theater.
Spectra is the largest construction company in the Western United States that focuses on historic restoration and preservation. Adamyk and his staff say they are “committed to the protection and preservation of our country’s most cherished architectural, historic and cultural landmarks.”
However, with that said, there are no projects more important to Adamyk than those undertaken by his recently started ministry – the restoration of people’s lives through Christ-centered recovery homes.
Although the 53-year-old follower of Jesus has already opened two facilities for men who have had problems with alcohol and drugs through Homes of Promise this year, his vision is much wider.
Adamyk would like to see each church in America sponsor a recovery home. FULL POST
Posted 4/23/15 at 11:45 AM | Alex Murashko
The challenge for Catalyst organizers this year under the new leadership of its executive director, Tyler Reagin, is staying above a tidal wave of Christian conferences, many of which have emulated the Atlanta-based movement once considered to hold “Ferrari” status, as a young pastor recently put it, since its start in 1999.
That year, it was conceived as a “Next Generation Leaders Conference” by Andy Stanley, Reggie Joiner, John Maxwell, Lanny Donoho and several young leaders.
“Catalyst was created to meet the felt need that existed within the church leader space for a leadership event that was focused on a new generation of church leaders,” Catalyst says. “Everything within this space seemed built around a forty to sixty year old mindset and medium. This team was convinced that this needed to change.” FULL POST
Posted 4/16/15 at 1:08 AM | Alex Murashko
IRVINE, Calif. — More than 3,000 leaders who love the Church will gather on Thursday and Friday (April 16-17) for the 7th annual Catalyst West event — focusing on “unifying, equipping, and challenging this community of change makers to evoke lasting change within our culture and world,” organizers said.
This year’s event, held at Mariner’s Church Irvine, will bring a host of fresh voices and thought leaders, including a change maker panel featuring a conversation on how the Church is partnering with community agencies in LA to create holistic change. The schedule includes team collectives that will offer a time for intentional connection and reflection on session topics, as well as special musical guests and entertainers.
Catalyst will also showcase its new app for the first time for Catalyst West attendees. The Catalyst App includes interactive, informative and fun activities to enhance the live event experience as well as exclusive content and access to community 365 days of the year, Catalyst states. The Catalyst App is available for both iPhone and Catalyst is unique in its ability to reach across denominations and backgrounds in order to gather leaders around the call of being ambassadors of reconciliation in the world. FULL POST
Posted 4/4/15 at 1:55 AM | Alex Murashko
In a bold move outside the norm for most congregations, Santa Monica pastor Steve Snook plans to set aside his own preaching as he did last year and give the keys, so to say, to the Easter late morning service to those sitting on the grass at Temescal Canyon Park.
I took part and witnessed this amazing work of the Holy Spirit last year.
Instead of a tightly wrapped “boxed” Easter sermon, Pastor Steve explained at the beginning of this remarkable gathering, that God had told him, “This service is on me.”
Snook told me recently, that last year, “coming into Easter I was praying, ‘Lord, what do we do?’”
“Then, God said to me, ‘You asked for me to lead and it’s not about you and what you have to say, Steve. It’s my church, let me work,’” the pastor of Metro Church said. “Realizing for me to kind of take my hands off of it and not have to think about me preaching this moving sermon or something… It was really more about God doing it through his people.” FULL POST
Posted 3/30/15 at 10:48 PM | Alex Murashko
Editor’s Note: Alisa Kaplan is the author of “Still Room For Hope” to be released by Faith Words in April. She is the survivor of one of the most infamous rape cases in Southern California History and is currently a state-certified sexual assault victim advocate and crisis intervention counselor and volunteers at a rape crisis center in Los Angeles County. Alisa is attending college to obtain her degree in psychology. Below is her suggested five things to give up for lent.
5 Things to Give Up for Lent
By Alisa Kaplan
Every year, millions of Christians around the world commemorate the 40 days leading up to Easter with a season of fasting and repentance known as Lent.
However, fasting, as one of the most ancient religious practices, is not something to be undertaken lightly. Its purpose is to help us give up some of the control in our lives so as to depend more fully on God.
Giving up control is never something easily done, especially for survivors of traumas such as abuse and sexual assault. Nothing is more central to that survival as regaining a sense of control. After our sense of self and security has undergone a terrifying violation, restoring feelings of agency and power over the chaotic forces in our lives becomes the ultimate goal. FULL POST
Posted 3/23/15 at 1:56 PM | Alex Murashko
It should be a no-brainer to know that pornography destroys marriages.
After all, habitually viewing pornography “sets up formidable walls between couples: guilt, unrealistic sexual expectations, addictive behaviors, and the erosion of trust, to name just a few.” Another words, as “The Intimate Couple” puts it, pornography can be a “barrier to intimacy.”
As a $14-billion per year industry in the U.S., studies show that an increased number of marriages are harmed by men and/or women viewing porn. Often leading to divorce, the affairs of the heart (and mind) include an addiction to cyber porn.
The reality of pornography inside a marriage is that “it introduces another person into a couple’s sex life,” as an article in MarriageToday states.
Another person? That is serious and that is more than sad.
MarriageToday properly attributes Jesus as saying that “simply looking at another person in a longing and lustful manner is equal to adultery.” The article continues: “Inevitably, we begin to compare our spouse’s body and sexual performance to the person or people in the pornography we are viewing. Also, we are making a very damaging statement to our spouse that they simply aren’t enough for us. Of course, when stimulated by pornography, no number of women or men could ever satisfy us. It is an insatiable appetite.” FULL POST
Posted 3/17/15 at 5:58 PM | Alex Murashko
SAT-7 is Christian Satellite Television By and For the People of the Middle East and North Africa. For more info go to www.sat7.org.
SAT-7 is a network of four channels, SAT-7 ARABIC, SAT-7 PARS (Farsi), SAT-7 KIDS and SAT-7 TÜRK (Turkish). More than 75% of SAT-7's programs are made in the Middle East by Middle Eastern Christians.
The network broadcasts can be seen in every country in North Africa, the Middle East and Europe.
Report from Ainkawa Mall, Erbil, Iraq video link: https://youtu.be/Wsxw_x4HIC4
Posted 3/16/15 at 3:59 PM | Alex Murashko
He's keeping the conversation definitely worth having going!
"Many who struggle with sex or porn wrestle with fear … fear of loneliness, fear of rejection, fear of worthlessness, fear of not being able to stop.
Fear paralyzes us and keeps us trapped in our destructive habits. Fear is often what holds people back from getting accountable. The thing about fear is that you can't escape it unless you admit it. You need to own up to the fear and recognize that it is an issue you must face. Write yourself a letter today confessing your fears about addiction and what you plan on doing to break free. FULL POST
Posted 3/14/15 at 12:55 AM | Alex Murashko
A. Larry Ross Communications
Evangelist Greg Laurie to bring Gospel message to Metroplex and beyond in first-ever Christian event to be held at the home of 'America's Team'
DALLAS, March 11, 2015 – Nearly 500 pastors and ministry leaders from throughout North Texas attended yesterday's launch event for Harvest America, an evangelistic outreach to be held at AT&T Stadium in November, as well as broadcast live and streamed to other venues across the country.
Jack Graham, Senior Pastor of Prestonwood Baptist Church and a member of the Harvest America advisory team, spoke to the timing and location of the crusade as he introduced Greg Laurie to the crowd.Last year's event attracted more than 20,000 to the American Airlines Center on Oct. 5, and tens of thousands watched the live simulcast. This year's event will be live simulcast around the country again. FULL POST
Posted 3/4/15 at 9:04 PM | Alex Murashko
Yes, the conversation about loving on Los Angeles continues.
Together L.A., a three day conference featuring close to 50 speakers primarily discussing how churches and ministries can effectively collaborate to show the love of Christ to the city, concluded with best-selling author and pastor Tim Keller speaking about individual identity before 2,000 people in attendance last Saturday (Feb. 28, 2015).
"Christianity doesn't just give you a new identity it gives you a radical way of forming an identity," said Keller, pastor at Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Manhattan, New York. "It gives you a unique, liberating and infinitely better identity than the one the culture is imposing on you right now." READ FULL STORY FULL POST