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Articles by Kelli Williams

Found 4 Articles by Kelli Williams

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New Avenues for Applying Salt and Light

Poorly funded public schools, expensive private schools or the challenge of homeschooling - parents in inner-city Youngstown, Ohio, had few options for their children's education - until now.

This year, 624 students in urban Youngstown are attending their first year at Eagle Heights Academy, a public charter school privately run by Christians.

"We just wanted to give parents another choice for their children," said Gary Frost, pastor of Rising Star Baptist Church and member of the Greater Youngstown Coalition of Christians, a group of area churches which have united to provide educational, social, economic and urban renewal programs to the community.

"GYCC felt that education was the key to permanent community renewal in Youngstown," said Frost, a former president of the State Convention of Baptists in Ohio, former second vice president of the Southern Baptist Convention, and current Executive Committee member.

Charter schools, also calle...

James and Carla Torrence Lead MorningTide in "On-site, Real-time" Prayer

Carla Torrence describes it simply as "something God wanted us to do." There is no question in her mind or in the mind of her husband, James, that they are right where God wants them — serving His people in His church. "It's a great place to serve," said James. "I really feel called to do this. There are other things that I'm involved in at Providence and I love them, but I have no doubts this is my primary call from God."

They're talking about their work as coordinators of MorningTide, the Sunday morning prayer time where members of Providence Baptist Church in Raleigh, N.C., pray in shifts from 8 a.m. to noon. Each Sunday they pray for specific aspects of Sunday School, morning worship, and church activities. They also pray about the sermon, the music, and the people who sit in the congregation.

A century ago, Charles Spurgeon set the example. As he preached, a group of men were praying in the boiler room beneath the pulpit of the church. Today, James and Carla Torrence follow in their footsteps.

Their calling to this unique ministry came several years ago before they even joined...

Tim Rogers drives an hour and a half to attend worship services at First Baptist Church in Fenton, Missouri. The single father says he really likes the pastor and has many friends in the congregation, but the main reason he makes the drive every Sunday is because his daughter, Jennifer, loves her Sunday School class. Jennifer is 15 years old and profoundly retarded.

Harpeth Heights Baptist in Nashville, Tenn., just started a special education class for mentally and physically handicapped people like Jennifer. Already one family has joined the church specifically because of the program.

Carlton McDaniel, senior pastor of Highland Baptist Church in Raleigh, N.C., says several members of his congregation were caring for handicapped children at home and could not attend services before Highland began its special education Sunday School class 14 years ago. The class has proved mutually beneficial. "For our church, the students are a tremendous blessing," said McDaniel.

These Baptist churches and hundreds more like them across the country have discovered a whole different kind of ministry outreach. Special education classes ministe...

A Little Imagination Opens Gospel Doors

Does knocking on doors make your hands shake? Does street witnessing turn your knees to mush? Then let your imagination run wild for spreading the Gospel of Christ as illustrated by the following vignettes.

The Gospel Taxi moves across the country

Claude Frazier, a doctor in Asheville, NC, is trying to share the Gospel with the whole world via taxi. He's made it about halfway to the West Coast, and has his sights set on the rest of the world. No, he's not driving the taxi, rather he's putting Gospel tracts into as many of them as possible. "Many people don't go to church, but they ride in a lot of taxi cabs." Frazier started Scripture Taxi Ministry, an organization which helps churches and other Christian groups place evangelical materials in the backseats of taxis. It's not pushy or aggressive -- just available. And Frazier says it works. One man in Atl...