Thursday, July 31, 2008

Eileen (Mrs. Archer) Baum With the Lord

Eileen Baum went home to be with the Lord Thursday night, July 3, 2008. She was 85 years old.

Eileen was born in Gays Mills, Wisconsin in 1923, moved to Minot, North Dakota and then to Portland, Oregon. In l943, she met the love of her life, Archer Baum, at Multnomah School of the Bible. Their marriage in l944 lasted 61 years.

In l953, Eileen moved to San Diego when Archer became the pastor of the San Diego Grace Brethren Church. In addition to her committment to that ministry, Eileen was active with the Gideons International. Archer died in September of 2005.

Eileen and Archer had three daughters, Rebecca, Colleen and Deborah. She is survived by her sister, Phyllis Whitcher, her daughters Colleen (Mrs. Phil Teran) and Deborah, eight grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

She will be greatly missed and we look forward to a reunion when Christ returns. A private, family graveside service was held on Tuesday, July 8th, El Camino Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, Bibles may be purchased through Gideons International.
Published in the San Diego Union-Tribune on 7/8/2008

Kickball Tournament -- Your Invitation

Hello Pastors and Youth Leaders,

I wanted to invite your youth group to a District Youth Kickball Tournament that we are going to be putting on at Brookville, Ohio, GBC on Sept 6 starting at 1:00 p.m.

The idea is to try to have your group RSVP by Aug. 24th along with the number that will be attending so we can make a bracket up for that day. Matt Strader will making up that bracket so if you could email him with the number of students who are planning on attending that would be great. His email address is

The plan for the day would be from approximately 1:00 – 5:00 ish have the kickball tournament and then do a cookout. We are asking each group to bring their own food: Hot dogs/Buns/Chips/etc. Ron Sheranko from First Grace was kind enough to volunteer to supply drinks for everyone. Brookville will have some grills there to do the cooking.

After supper we will be having a live band play and Stewart Peters from West Milton will be our speaker for the evening. Hopefully we will be able to wrap up everything by 8:00 p.m.

If you have any questions please feel free to call me or email me: We look forward to seeing you there!!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

NCO Plans Exams, Website, Fall Events

Here are several update items, from the latest e-mail newsletter of North Central Ohio ministerium coordinator Todd Scoles:

NCO Exams, September 17, GBC of Columbus

Mark Artrip (Powell GBC) and Josh Jackson (the quest) are scheduled for license exams. Plan to begin at 9:30 and stay for lunch if you are able. Contact Chip Heim at for advance copies of the written exams.

Capital City GBC launches website

Keep current with the development of this new church plant, led by Larry Totzke and Eric Miller, at Pray that the target of 50 in the launch team by the time public services begin in March 2009.

Fall Dates to Note

October 9 – Next meeting of NCO church planting discussion forum at Northwest Chapel GBC, 9:00-12:00. Pray for the steering team of Tony Webb, Ron Smals, Ron Boehm, and Martin Guerena as they refine the focus. For more information, contact Tony at

October 13-15 – Central Focus Retreat, location TBA

October 23 – NCO Ministerium, GBC of Columbus

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Northeast Ohio District Pastors Picnic Near Wooster

Pastors in the Northeast Ohio District of Grace Brethren Churches gathered on July 11 for their annual picnic. It was held at the Fountain, a country home near Wooster, Ohio that has been turned into a retreat center. Activities included: lots of talking, a clown's balloon creations, swimming, swinging, ball throwing, making s'mores, worship and sharing around a campfire, water balloon game, and meal.

Joe (pastor, Canton Grace Brethren Church) and Melinda Cosentino made the arrangements for the day.

To see photos of the event, click here.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Why the Faithful are Fleeing Church: A Forthcoming Book

Here is a brief review from Publisher's Weekly of a book that will come out in September. Though she is not clergy, Julia Duin is an insightful observer and the book should have some thought-provoking material in it for us to consider. CAVEAT --we have not seen the manuscript--only this review from PW.

Quitting Church: Why the Faithful Are Fleeing and What to Do About It

Julia Duin. Baker, $17.99 (192p) ISBN 978-0-8010-6823-2

Duin brings two kinds of experiences to bear in this engaging little jeremiad: as religion editor for the Washington Times, she is in her element marshaling statistics, interviewing authors and clergy, and commenting on the trend of faithful evangelicals who increasingly vote with their feet by leaving their churches.

But she's also a self-described born-again evangelical herself, coping with the personal pain of not having a viable and permanent church home.

Drawing heavily on research by pollster George Barna, Duin diagnoses a widespread dissatisfaction among evangelicals, who feel their churches do a decent job with new Christians but fall far short with mature believers. In particular, Duin shows, women and singles are leaving churches in ever-greater numbers. (As a single woman herself, she discusses her own experiences with being marginalized while successfully evoking a larger context through research and polls.)

Duin has some prescriptions to help with these problems, including meatier sermons that address real issues; house churches and micro-churches that foster more genuine community; and even in-church matchmaking services to help singles who want to find a mate. (Sept.)

Richard Bell Health Update

Richard Bell, pastor of the Apple Valley Community Church, a Grace Brethren church in Winchester, Virginia, has been battling a particularly virulent form of cancer. Here is the latest update so you may continue to pray intelligently for Richard and Nancy in the battle.

Last week, my oncologist thought the cancer was active because I was running an irregular temperature--for instance last Sunday when I awoke my temperature was 100.9 [a dangerous level for someone in my condition]. However two hours later, when we left for church, the temperature dropped to 95.7.

They had done a blood culture the previous week and that was negative. So the doctor ordered another CT Scan. This scan showed the the cancer had stabilized once again. As a result I will have one more chemo treatment on Tuesday. Then they will check it with a CT Scan in two months to see what is happening.

When the cancer becomes active again I will undergo a different kind of chemo treatment. As of now the cancer is not active. The projection is that I will have about 4 and 1/2 months before it becomes active again.

Nancy and I have no great expectations. I knew when I was first diagnosed that the norm for life expectancy for this very rare and very aggressive cancer is 30-50 months. My 30-month date will be March-April of 2009.

Thanks again for your prayers.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Your Mailbox Awaits the Next AGBM Newsletter!

The summer, 2008, edition of Sharpening One Another, the paper newsletter of the Association of Grace Brethren Ministers (AGBM), is now in the mail.

Edited and produced for the AGBM by Liz Cutler Gates of the Brethren Missionary Herald Company, the newsletter this edition contains a lead article by AGBM president Joel Richards, details about the upcoming AGBM annual meetings in Tampa, updates about pastors around the fellowship, and much more.

Sharpening One Another is sent to all pastors in the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches. If you do not receive a copy and would like one, contact Ann Myers at

Monday, July 07, 2008

Everett Community Seeks Children's Pastor


Community Grace Brethren Church of Everett, PA is seeking a pastor to oversee a children's ministry. This full-time position, added to existing staff of Senior Pastor and full-time Pastor of Youth and Parents, will involve teaching children, as well as assisting in the training of others to be involved with all children's emphasis programs, including VBS.

This pastor will assist the Senior Pastor with administrative duties and Small Group involvement. A board of elders provides leadership for this growing church of approximately 240 in attendance.

For more information, please email Dr. Bob Lazer at