December 22, 2014
Christmas Eve 2014
Dearest Upper Midwest Family:
I have just returned from a most remarkable two weeks in the Archdiocese of Jos in Nigeria. It was a time of such rich Kingdom experiences that I am sure I will be absorbing them for months to come.
We had the privilege of visiting a church under siege--truly a persecuted church. Indeed, even in our time there a bomb blast occurred in downtown Jos. But our brothers and sisters there carry on with a Gospel courage and focus--a focus on the lost and the poor and starting new churches...and they do so with joy. How I wish I could transport you there to be a part of the worship!
The only power that can overcome the darkness in Jos or Peshawar or America is Jesus. Praise God the Father for his Son's holy incarnation, crucifixion, resurrection and ascension. All things hold together and are healed in Jesus.
Live, preach, teach, raise families, build friendships, serve, work in the name of Jesus. Oh the joy of this--"Good news of a great joy that will be for all the people (Luke 2.10)"!
Katherine and l love you.
Yours in Christ,
+Stewart Upper Midwest
PS One of my great joys was ordaining one of Archbishop's Ben's new deacons. I hope you are heartened by the way in which this communicates our being fully received by the Church of Nigeria. I have enclosed a picture of the ordination as well as one of my son Ellison, me, and our host the Venerable Mark Mukan.
December 12, 2014
During this Advent season at Church of the Resurrection we are partnering with World Relief to reach out to the refugees in our community. We are collecting four Good Neighbor Kits and assembling a Good Neighbor Team. As we got ready for this Advent emphasis, I asked my friend Tim Kustusch from World Relief to give us an overview of the global refugee situation. As you read through these sobering stats, keep in mind that we have the privilege of making a difference for a few families in our own community. Check out Tim's
We also had the privilege of hearing from the Executive Director for World Relief DuPage/Aurora, Emily Gray, in last week's blog post. She shared a familiar sounding story about a little refugee boy, and encouraged us to welcome refugees as if we were welcoming Jesus himself.
Please keep checking our registry to see what items we still need to complete our goal of four Good Neighbor Kits.