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Good News For A Change

Sharing Good News and Uplifting Stories

~Welcome~

“I wish we could hear some good news for a change.” Seems like every day we hear people saying this to each other… people who are discouraged and wearied by the constant flow of bad news from around the world and at home. Yes, we need to know about wars and refugees and terror attacks, but the constant flow of alarmist chatter (“analysis”) on 24-hour news stations wears on the spirit.

There IS good news happening in the world. An amazing amount of it. And the more we know about it, the more we can discuss it and use it to help build a brighter future. So for anyone out there who is hungry and thirsty for some good news, this blog is a kind of “Good News Cafe” — a meeting place and workshop for sharing positive happenings and good ideas. Grab a cuppa, pull up a chair, relax, and join the conversation.

Featured post

Good Read: “God’s Refugee: The Story of a Lost Boy Pastor”

One man, called by God to minister to his people, lives out his call through civil war, loss of home and family, refugee life, and more.

John Chol Daau of South Sudan knew from a very young age that he was called by God to minister to his people. Even as a youngster he began to preach to people in his village and surrounding villages.

Educated at Trinity School for Ministry in Ambridge, PA, today Rev. Daau is an ordained Anglican priest, founder of Good Shepherd Academy, Good Shepherd College and Seminary, and creator of The Christian Times, South Sudan’s leading Christian publication.

In the years between childhood and ordination, in the words of humanitarian Baroness Caroline Cox, is a story that “is… a story of the lives of real people… victims of war inflicted by the regime in Khartoum. I was there many times during that war and witnessed the indescribable suffering of the people… and the tragic displacement from their homes. But I was always profoundly humbled and inspired by the ways in which people such as Rev. John Chol Daau retained a radiant, living faith through their anguish. Theirs is a story that needs to be told as a celebration of the power of God.”

Highly recommended reading.

Orphans Reborn reaches Children, Caregivers

It’s been well known for some time that the former Soviet Union has more than its share of orphanages. Caregivers explain: “while some of these lonely, forgotten, and troubled boys and girls are true orphans, the majority are “social orphans” who have been removed from their homes due to abuse or neglect by alcoholic parents.”

The Slavic Gospel Association has been ministering in these orphanages for many years through its Orphans Reborn program, demonstrating the good news of God’s love to these children, and sharing tokens of love and care. Recently SGA has started providing care in an orphanage for children with developmental difficulties in the Kirov region. They share movies, give gifts, and spend time with the children. They have the opportunity to work with the children in ways that the staff often cannot, and help discover and develop their gifts and talents.

Caregivers enjoy the lessons and activities as much as the children, and often repeat them after the SGA volunteers have gone.  One volunteer recalls: “one day, as a teacher accompanied us to say goodbye, she cried… She told us… Continue reading “Orphans Reborn reaches Children, Caregivers”

Slavic Gospel Association’s Commitment to Far East Russia

The Slavic Gospel Association (SGA), founded in Illinois by Russian immigrants in the early 1900s, has been committed to evangelizing the people of the former USSR for nearly a century.  One of their latest efforts is outreach to the people of Far East Russia.  An area of small towns and villages, much of it very poor, just getting there often means crossing Siberia; much of the region therefore is accessible only by small airplane.

To that end SGA has begun an aviation ministry to enable Bible teachers and missionaries to bring the Good News and aid to the people of the Far East.

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Many of the people of the Far East region are minority ethnic groups. Cut off from much… Continue reading “Slavic Gospel Association’s Commitment to Far East Russia”

The Salvation Army – Dedicated to Good News

In case you missed it last year (I know I did) – the Salvation Army recently celebrated its 150th Anniversary.  Probably best known for its red-kettle drives at Christmas time, the Salvation Army began as a mission in the East End of London in 1865.  Founders William and Catherine Booth “walked the streets of London to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ to the poor, the homeless, the hungry, and the destitute” and “demonstrating their faith by offering practical support to people in need on the streets of London”.

Today the Salvation Army continues their founders’ work by… Continue reading “The Salvation Army – Dedicated to Good News”

“Gateway of Grace” Ministers to Refugees

The Episcopal Diocese of Dallas, TX is making a difference in lives of refugees and has created a working model for ministry to refugees across the nation.

The ministry, called Gateway of Grace, was founded by Rev. Dr. Samira Izadi Page.  Page was once a refugee herself – she and her family fled from Iran and were granted political asylum in the U.S.  Once in the States she became a Christian, and went on to earn Continue reading ““Gateway of Grace” Ministers to Refugees”

New Hire at Penn State Hershey Medical Center

Penn State Hershey Medical Center’s newest employee has four legs rather than the customary two: her name is Kaia, and she’s a golden retriever.  Kaia’s job is patient care mostly in the pediatric radiation and radiation oncology units. She helps kids relax during their treatments… and she cheers up her co-workers as well.  More on the story can be found here.

Iraqi Christians Allowed to Return to Churches

via the Independent, UK: A few weeks ago Iraqi Christians were able to return to church for the first time in two years. Christians near Mosul, now liberated from Isis, celebrated Mass there as church bells rang out. Read more here.

Domestic Violence Shelters Being Retrofitted to Accept Pets

One of the sad facts of domestic violence is that the vast majority of abused partners (estimates run 70-85%) report their abusers have also threatened, abused, or killed a family pet. Fear for the safety of beloved animals often cause the abused to remain in dangerous situations longer than they otherwise would.

Now a partnership between Rescue Rebuild – a nationwide network of volunteers who renovate animal shelters – and SAF-T (Sheltering Animals and FamiliesTogether), with funding from Red Rover, are retrofitting domestic violence shelters to provide on-site housing for family pets.  Continue reading “Domestic Violence Shelters Being Retrofitted to Accept Pets”

Duquesne University Language Students Use Drama To Reach Local Immigrants

Pittsburgh, PA – Working with children whose first language is Spanish, Duquesne University language students and professors are communicating English and life skills to local Spanish-speaking children using drama.

The program is called Reading to Play, Playing to Read (RPPR) and is designed to be “a collaboration between Duquesne and the community, as partners that benefit equally from the relationship,” says Assistant Professor Vanessa Fernandez in the latest issue of Duquesne University Magazine.

DU has come together with Casa San José, a nonprofit serving 5-8 year old children of recent immigrants Continue reading “Duquesne University Language Students Use Drama To Reach Local Immigrants”

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