Greetings from our Special Appointments
and Special Relations Pastors
Carissa and I welcomed Genevieve to our family this January and Elianna absolutely loves being a big sister. We are excited to see what God has in store for us as a family this year.
I send greetings to my brothers and sisters in Christ in the Free Methodist Church. Praise God for the privilege of sharing the gospel in this day and age. In spite of how our world grows darker in these last days, God is raising up a new generation of deeply committed Christians throughout the world. The Body of Christ is alive because of God’s faithfulness to us.
I continue to be amazed at God’s gracious faithfulness in my life. I’m humbled that God would choose to use me wherever I go. My prayer as I traveled to Israel a few months ago, was that God would lead me to an Israeli man or couple where I can share my faith and testimony. It was a miraculous encounter on the flight over where I met a man from Tel Aviv. We have become such close friends, Asher calls me his ‘best friend.’ We phone each other almost every week to talk about God in our lives, our families, and in the world.
I remember how God used me over the years in England to reach international people. God has given me a heart for those in distant lands. Now I’m humbled to reach people in Israel.
God is so good. Throughout this past year, I have prepared a mini-sermon on a weekly basis for a small congregation in Cheshire. I also continue to receive reports of God working in the lives of so many in the U.K. of whom I had to privilege to share Christ many years ago.
I have the greatest joy of watching my sons and their families grow in Christ. The crisis of our past has produced a powerful bond as restoration took place in our lives. It has drawn us closer to Christ and to each other.
Today, as Christians in the Middle East suffer extreme persecution and even martyrdom, my own persecution has given me a deep compassion and identity with them in their suffering. My personal ministry allows me to encourage others to be courage in their faith and take a stand for Israel and the gospel of Christ.
My daily prayer, plea; and practice consumes me:
God, I want to draw nearer
Than I have ever been
I want to be humble
I want to die
To self in every way
So I can draw closer
And closer to You each day
May you experience the tremendous blessings of our Lord.
I believe that today is the best day ever for building the kingdom of God. There are so many new ways to reach out. I am excited for our pastors as the harvest is ripe and it is all around us. I am asking that those of us who are retired to hold up our conference pastors in prayer daily. I will make that commitment, will you?
I give thanks to God for all He is doing to love homeless men through me. I only whisper my name next to His because it is obvious that He is the one doing it all. May He bless my church family in California who nurtured my sense of calling, celebrated the victories in ministry and supported me through many transitions.
I’m grateful for our Free Methodist family and for God’s provision throughout my life. His mercies are new every morning!
Although Nellie and I (now in our mid-80’s) don’t get out to as many activities as we used to, we appreciate belonging to a larger Free Methodist family by means of our connection with FMCSC. We are glad when we can receive updates about people and activities in our conference. May each of you continue to grow in the love of God and the joy of Christian fellowship.
I want to thank all of you who have been praying for my wife which has Dystonia.
Today was Good Friday and as we did the Good Friday Service at City of Hope I was called upon to do some of the reading of the Scriptures. I was struck again by the words of Jesus when He says, “’It is finished’ and with that He breathed His last”. And just few minutes later I got a pager calling me to attend to a person who was about to die and I went just on time to the patient bedside where surrounded by her family she also breathed her last. This experience served to showed me how real the death of Jesus Christ also was. He did indeed breathe his last as all human beings do. But thanks be to God who brought Christ back to life by his amazing power and will do the same for us one day when we shall with all confidence ask: “Where O Death is your victory? Where O Death is your sting?”
Bondye beni ou zami mwen! God bless you my friends! In spite of ongoing heart issues God continues to give me opportunities to be His witness and worker here in Oregon and through phone and internet in Haiti. I miss my Southern California Free Methodist family and pray for His best for you this year.
This has been a year of some physical challenges. Since being anointed, there has been a reduction in pain in one area, Praise be to God. Colleagues and students have honored my retirement beyond my imagination–that is the grace of God, showing that God has been at work in bringing the Word of God alive.
My passion for ministering to “the least of these” has found an amazing mission field in the areas surrounding New Hope Center.
We serve a mighty and loving God. We must allow Him to make us strong and courageous. We will be victorious if we follow the instructions of Joshua: “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things among you.”
Lydia, who is my youngest daughter, will go to college this year. So, I am waiting for God’s provision and faithfulness in our family financial needs.
Continuing fruitful ministry with the dying and the grieving as they discover and experience the saving, healing, and comforting presence of Jesus in their lives.
I have never sensed more affirmation in my calling than in these years. A decided shift has occurred from an institutional platform and focus to a complete focus upon the Kingdom by means of preaching, teaching, and leading the broader church across many organizational lines. This is an exhilarating, though at times completely overwhelming, journey. Never has ministry been so impactful or life-giving. As I continue to guide the Wesleyan Holiness Consortium in growth, I see God’s hand clearly at work shaping a new understanding of holiness in the 21st Century. In leading the International Council for Higher Education, I am encouraged by the hunger for deeply spiritual leadership in institutions around the globe. In ministering at APU, I am blessed to watch this great university find peace and confidence in its Wesleyan Holiness identity. These are really good days of fulfilling ministry for Christ and His Reign.
I am concerned about some of the recent developments, the sharp increase in the worldwide persecution of Christians and in the decrease in religious freedom for Christians in the U. S. On March 31, I went with some friends to Sacramento to attend a rally led by Franklin Graham. He is planning to visit each of the state capitols in the U.S. before the November election. He spoke from the capitol steps using Nehemiah 1 as his text. He challenged Christians to pray that God would send a spiritual renewal to our country. He asked us to confess to God the sins of our country and also our own personal sins. He then challenged us to get informed, vote, and consider running for political office in the future. I believe that this is what we need to do.
Karla Riggs Norton
14-15 years in Hospice is a long time and I am sure I could not still be in Hospice if not for being a full-time Chaplain. I now work full-time in Bereavement… men/women, teens/young adults, and children find strength to “live again.” Personally, I have moved more from “Jesus Calling” to “Streams in the Desert!” But, I am hanging on to Jesus. I am thankful to live close to my mother and watch her life/ministry continue even though her mate in life/ministry went on to Heaven in Dec 2014. My son and little family are 45 minutes away and I get to babysit 15 month old Riggs. My daughter, Valerie, lives with me and continues to struggle physically and emotionally with a hurt that began when she was a little girl. Guess what, as He promised all of us, He is always near!
I continue to maintain the basics of the Christian walk and spiritual formation, seeking to be a faithful servant, and communicating Scriptural values and the Gospel by deed and word.
Hello fellow pastors and leaders!
What joy to serve with you to see the lives of the poor come out of poverty and into the Kingdom through the training programs that we provide in East Africa! Thank you to many of you who support financially.
OVER 450 women now have turned from brewing and selling illegal alcohol to positive businesses AND have surrendered their lives to Christ! Clean WATER WELLS are being drilled now BY HAND in Tanzania in suffering villages.
GET INVOLVED – See the Materials available for your VBS program to help suffering children. Sponsor a WELL or TRAINING for a Kenyan Free Methodist Pastor or Current brewer. Let’s connect -Text me at (951)704-8973 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org – www.empoweringlives.org
It is my honor to serve as the Executive Pastor in the Campus Pastors office at Azusa Pacific University. God is doing powerful things among the students and I am deeply grateful to be part of the team.
Greetings to members of the 2016 Annual Conference. Julie and I are grateful to be in good health. It is always a joy to see those with whom we shared in ministry in our active years, although that number is dwindling. Our prayers are with you as you continue proclaiming the Good News.
The Lord continues to sustain me with His joy and purpose in serving Him, even in light of difficult circumstances. I continue to learn deeper lessons of faith. I take joy in sharing the truth of Christ’s Gospel wherever I can. I rejoice at being ordained as an elder this year.
What a friend we have in Jesus. I am privileged to be partnered with an organization, the Free Methodist Church, that lives for Jesus, that propagates Jesus and is moving the Gospel to the ends of the world. May God bless and bless and bless some more. I rejoice for all He is doing in the Church.
Stay the course is my prayer for our spiritual leaders and servants as we live in such challenging times! In the words of Joshua 1:9, Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Bringing people to Christ, helping them get established in God’s Word, and living out my life in an authentic and consistent basis remains my mission.
As predicted, this has been a somewhat challenging transitional season. I’m very thankful to be assured of and seeing the Lord’s hand at work in the midst of the challenges, as He is both equipping me and blessing those I get to do life with. I am looking forward to an even greater manifestation of His loving work in my community.
I’m deeply thankful to all my FM family back in So Cal and look forward to our further ministry together down the road.
Let’s keep on running the race with our eyes fixed on Jesus…
Know that, as you meet, I will be praying for the continued blessing of God on your good work. I have been enriched by the association with the FMCSC I have had and continue to enjoy.