July 1, 2011

another year of Christian camp

Posted in children’s, personal, the Northeast at 11:43 PM by alexlozada

Great week w/ lively 4-6th graders + servant-hearted staff @ Indian Lake Christian Service Camp. Oldest daughter was counselor (2nd year in row, and week right after getting back from Dominican Republic trip), youngest daughter was camper (along w/ 2 of her cousins), and middle daughter visited 3 nights during the week (including faculty hunt!).

Part of what I love about camp is the opportunity to teach again – my “day job” is more focused on administration and trouble-shooting 😉 I taught the  morning Bible class with Jesus-stories on the week’s theme “I Am”, and Tuesday PM outdoor chapel in the newly restored and usable “amphitheater” – wooden benches overlooking the Susquehanna River – complete w eagles circling overhead, noisy power boats on the water, and 136-car freight train – yes, some of the campers chose to count the number of cars instead of listening to my lesson – surprise, surprise 🙂

Another part of what I love about camp is reconnecting w/ a past season of life . I missed the recent work weekends getting my home church camp, Catskill Christian Assembly, but thanks to the blessing of Facebook, I’ve reconnected with some friends from wayback. Serving at camp was a crucial turning point in my journey to vocational Christian ministry . . . . and High School Retreat (Fall 1990) was an even bigger turning point in my life – that’s another story (stories!) that I should let my bride of 19+years tell 🙂

June 7, 2011

Road trip to DC Regional Chr Ch

Posted in NACC, the Northeast at 4:32 PM by alexlozada

Heather, Abby & I drove 1.5 hours south last Sunday to hear a strong Christ-following discipleship message from lead pastor  Daryl Reed during our first-time visit to DC Regional Christian Church.  We also chatted a little with Steve Blake, staff leader of DC Regional college  ministry. Steve presented at last year’s Eastern Chr Conference on young adult ministry, Daryl is a main session speaker at this year’s North American Chr Convention. We enjoyed the a cappella worship led by Carlos Scott and DC Regional’s worship team (last year they combined w/ MCC’s team to lead worship at the NACC) – different musical style from what we experience most weekends, but still praising the same Lord! The morning served as a great reminder of “same but different” in God’s kingdom 🙂

November 14, 2010

Cannonball + ECC + Global Impact Celebration

Posted in Cannonball, cross cultural mission, the Northeast at 11:05 PM by alexlozada

#MtCC is taking two big JUMPs “into the pool” to make splashes for God, both this week! And I survived my term as Eastern Christian Convention workshops chairman – all the workshop presenters made it there 🙂 and shared insights from the Spirit. The last couple of weeks I’ve suffered the “ripple effects” of a cold + last minute ECC + Cannonball + GIC scrambling, which meant no blogging, but I’m back 🙂

Here are notes for the most recent Cannonball Sunday AM messages. I’ll be trying to catch up w/ reflections on some of the daily devotions & daily dares in upcoming posts; along w/ thougsht about the ECC + GIC.

July 22, 2010

Retro “Simplicity” (resources 18 July)

Posted in MCC resources, the Northeast at 11:10 PM by alexlozada

Jeff Walling preached a message on “Simplicity” that again pointed out another area of the Christian life in which I personally fall short. Though MCC doesn’t yet have video of his message, you can listen to the message online or download it. Study guide not ready til next week (unless you email me directly) but here’s a draft of the notes I took during the message.

If the Holy Spirit Jeff blessed you through Jeff Walling’s preaching, you can hear him later this year at the Eastern Christian Convention in Hershey PA during the main sessions on Fri PM & Sat PM 12-13 Nov.

May 21, 2010

NYC: great multitude no one could count – especially on the roads!

Posted in better disciples, NACC, NYC, the Northeast at 11:51 PM by alexlozada

Metro (NYC) Chr Convention 2010

attenders connecting after sessions at the Metro Chr Convention, including main speaker Clay Perkins (MACU)

Last month for the Metro Christian Convention, this time to drive oldest daughter and Heather as guests for a Long Island-style Sweet Sixteen = long-suffering through NYC traffic 😦 But worth it both times!

Dr James Hamer, minister @ East Northport Christian (where Heather & I served for 10 years), reflects:

The Metro Christian Convention . . . in Queens was truly a microcosm of the picture given by John: “After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb.” (Revelation 7:9) With regard to East Northport Christian Church, there is represented in our congregation: Romania, Russia, Italy, Philippines, Germany, Puerto Rico, and plain people like myself! (Maybe missed one or two)

Though the attendance of the Metro is only a tiny fraction of the North American Christian Convention or (larger fraction) of the Eastern Christian Convention , my guess is that proportionally, the Metro is the most ethnically diverse gathering in the Restoration Movement. I hadn’t been back since we moved to Maryland, but seeing many friends from days gone by made it worth the traffic 🙂

April 20, 2010

ServeFest 2010 OR Metro Chr Conv – choose only one

Posted in NACC, NYC, the Northeast at 11:48 PM by alexlozada

Can’t be two places at once – often a ministry dilemma (occasionally a family one, too), especially at a thriving church like MCC. Here’s a recap of the Good Morning Maryland @ 9 segment on the Baltimore county version of this year’s ServeFest, including video. Heather & my girls will be volunteering w/ dozens of MCC students and adult sponsors at the Equestrian Center, and then over to MCC’s Mountain Rd campus for the ServeFest tailgate party.

Meanwhile, I’ll be attending the Metro Christian Convention in Queens NYC. Our family used to attend every year when we lived on Long Island, but I’ve not participated since we moved to Maryland five years ago. I’ll be passing along information about this year’s North American Christian Convention and Eastern Christian Convention while I’m at the Metro, as well as spending the day w/ my parents and sister – worthwhile to be sure, but another day when I would like to be in two places at once 🙂

July 25, 2009

God of This City NYC 09 change

Posted in NYC, the Northeast at 11:49 PM by alexlozada

Ministry = adapting to changes, sometimes last minute and beyond my control – hard lesson that I’m still learning 🙂 Because we didn’t have the response we’d hoped, we’re scaling back MCC’s short term mission trip to NYC to make it even shorter (Fri 31 July – Sat 1 Aug) – and less expensive. Details here. I regret missing the opportunity to work w/ Community Christian Church NYC & NYC Rescue Mission – but not my will but God’s will be done!

May 29, 2009

God of This City NYC 09 – two month countdown

Posted in cross cultural mission, NYC, the Northeast at 11:36 PM by alexlozada

I’ll be periodically blogging the next couple of months about a MCC short term mission team that will go to NYC Thursday 30 July – Monday 3 August to help six different churches and ministries:

Indian church planter C.T. Abraham and family

Indian church planter C.T. Abraham and family

Here are some past posts about MCC trips to NYC: reflection on 2008 one-day trip, prep for 2008 trip, the 2007 day-trip I planned to go but missed.

Download the first draft promo flyer.

April 29, 2009

forecasting Christianity in America: cynical optimism

Posted in culture, the Northeast at 11:40 PM by alexlozada

MCC’s exec pastor Rob Kastens forwarded our staff this recent Newsweek cover story and Albert Mohler’s follow-up blog post.  Dr. Mohler posted another follow-up, commenting on Stephen Prothro’s crititque of Newsweek’s original analysis.  One of my favorite bloggers Seldom Wrong Never In Doubt points to this Wall Street Journal critique, as well as adding his own “cynical optimist” opinion.

Earlier this week, I submitted a book review for my online church history course @ Cincinnati Christian University on Philip Jenkins’ The Next Christendom.  In the spirit of SWNID-style cynicism, this Jenkins quote, “modern Western media generally do an awful job of reporting religious realities, even within their own societies.”  Likewise, in the spirit of faith-and-historical-fact-based SWNID optimism, Jenkins concludes, “”Whether we look backward or forward in history, we can see that time and again, Christianity demonstrates a breath-taking ability to transform weakness into strength.”

July 18, 2008

I have enough!

Posted in better disciples, the Northeast at 11:30 PM by alexlozada

Liz Ross invited me to speak Thursday night at Indian Lake Christian Service Camp for Junior II week. Even from just a few hours there that night, I could see how much she & her staff are loving those kids, and how much fun everyone is having – the best bunk / skunk bunk videos are YouTube worthy 🙂

Their theme is Mythbusters: Jesus busts myths that you cannot get to God. Liz gave me the theme “Jesus busts the myth that you need to get more stuff” (Matthew 6:18-24). I followed the guidelines Rod Ross (Liz’s hubby and partner in kid-focused large group creativity!) gave for re-telling the Bible story and focusing on 4th-6th grade suitable application. The catch phrase for the kids was “I have enough” and we can show we have enough by saying thank you for our stuff, by not whining for more stuff, and by sharing our stuff.

To prep me to speak, Rod included Helpful suggestions for preparing a message for kids. Even when communicating to adults (small group leader, etc.) the points on “Be Passionate – Be genuinely excited and passionate about what you say, have a sense of urgency about all your words. If you do not feel passionate about the message, then find something new to say.” AND “Stories, Stories, Stories – The simplest attention spiker in the world are these 6 words “let me tell you a story.” Tell personal stories that relate to the topic.

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