Addiction & Consumption

The rest of this week, our blog will feature articles from the most recent Light & Life Magazine. See the links below if you’d like to read ahead. 


by Jeff Finley

The Free Methodist Church’s “2011 Book of Discipline” contains a section on the “Misuse of Substances.”

I can read the section comfortably while it covers alcohol, tobacco and “illicit drugs” — all of which I avoid. Then a couple of sentences hit me in the gut: “Likewise, we believe that the intemperate consumption of food is a form of abusing the body which may result in illness and obesity. We eat healthily so as to preserve the strength of our bodies and so extend our years of usefulness as servants of Christ.”



New Asia Area Director

Announcement from the Board of Bishops:

I am pleased to announce that the Board of Bishops of the FMCUSA has appointed Eric Spangler as the next Asia Area Director of FMWM. Eric will assume the AD position on July 1, 2014, but he will continue to serve as lead pastor at LifePoint (a multiple site Free Methodist Church) until year’s end. He will begin full time as Asia AD on January 1, 2015.

Eric and Virginia have served within the Free Methodist Church for nearly 25 years and currently live just north of Seattle in Washington State. Beginning in 2002, Eric served for five years as the Director of Mobilization for Free Methodist World Missions and brings a wealth of experience and relationship with missions and missionaries. He has continued to be heavily engaged in FM World Missions, especially in Asia, for the years since he held that position.

Bishop Matthew A. Thomas
Free Methodist Church – USA

Current Asia Area Director Steve Evoy will return to pastoral ministry in the Free Methodist Church – USA in the coming year.

Parent’s Progress 5.22.14

Today we are bringing you links to two great articles. You may have read stuff like this before, but we cannot overstate how important it is to keep up to date with youth culture. One is on Smartphone Apps and the other is on Porn. Sadly, the two sometimes go hand in hand. Besides knowing what is out there, be sure to have regular conversations with your teens about what is going on in their lives…and on their phones. 


Seven Dangerous Apps


10 Resources for Fighting Porn

Jesus’ POV

Matthew 9:36

When He saw the crowds… – Matthew 9:36

If you want to get the attention of a roomful of teenagers, turn something wild loose. A little touch of chaos in the atmosphere periodically is an asset to any youth group.

Years ago when I was a youth pastor, I turned something loose as I got ready to tell the parable of the lost sheep (Luke 15:1-7). After a little searching, I found a modern-day shepherdess, a middle-aged woman, on the outskirts of our town, Rochester, New York. My wife and I went out to visit the shepherdess on her farm, and she agreed to come to the city and talk about what she had come to understand about the nature of sheep and how she tended them.


Beth Moore Simulcast



Purchase your tickets now for Beth Moore LIVE in Fort Wayne September 13. Cost is $59.  If you would like to help someone else attend, write your check for $5 more or purchase an extra ticket for someone else. Make checks payable to the church specifying “Beth Moore”.  If you have questions, please see Ellen Swaim.


News Around the World

APRIL, 2014, from Ken & Melli Johnson in Burundi,  Africa


My kids are curious about bugs—especially the ones that frequent our house, like cockroaches and moths…we’ve recently had a great slew of both species.  I’m adept at catching the moths and releasing them, but prefer the abrupt demise of the roach which, my daughter informed me, has two brains, one on the head and one on the other end. I never learned that indelicate fact, and you probably would rather not read about it or any other nastiness, such as that I accidently blended one up in my blender while making a juice smoothie.  After enjoying my drink, I felt something in my teeth, pulled it out and, holding it up to the light, asked Ken what it was. His nonchalant  reply, “Oh, that looks like the leg of a cockroach.” Now, I always check the blender!

Missions April 1

We have much to be thankful for.  The children are thrilled with our ten new Golden Retriever puppies soon to go to new homes—people besiege us for them as they make wonderful guard dogs. AND, plans are in motion for moving this summer to the house behind the mission that the Lord provided a couple years ago. A change of plans of the owner of our present home delayed the need of an immediate move then, but now the transition has become necessary. We were glad for the delay as we needed to focus a great deal of time and effort on securing the final adoptions and USA Citizenship for our last six children, accomplished this past summer (PRAISE THE LORD!) after  much bureaucratic frustration. Now, we’re getting the house ready to move into—an exciting adventure for the whole family!

I’m so thankful for Ken and the children; my family near and far; wonderful praying friends around the world; and the powerful and loving God of the Universe who provides for our every need in awesome ways. “God is the strength of my heart…”  Psalm 73:26b (NAS)


Lots of Love, Melli and Ken, and kids


Day of Helping

Day of Helping  /  Saturday, June 28  /  1-4 p.m.


We cannot accomplish all that we need to do without working together.

~ Bill Richardson

Two are better than one,

because they have a good return for their labor:

If either of them falls down,

one can help the other up.

But pity anyone who falls

and has no one to help them up.

~Ecclesiastes 4:9-10


It is one day of helping, but it takes many days of preparation. As we did last year, we are seeking to fulfill part of our purpose by serving our community. We will do this by offering food, personal hygiene items, haircuts and manicures. We will also provide opportunities for prayer and encouragement. There will be games and entertainment for children. We need donations of canned goods, hygiene items and money. We need lots of prayer. We also need your presence and help in preparing, especially on that day. Contact Rick Swaim or the Church Office for how you can get involved.


Parent’s Progress 5.15.14

Bonding or Boundaries by Jonathan McKee

Parenting is hard!

I study and write about youth culture and parenting almost every day. It seems so nice and simple when I’m reading articles and typing words on the screen… then my 16-year-old gets home from school!

Huge difference between theory and practice.

I have never… emphasis on never… met the perfect parent. And I’m still learning lessons daily with my own kids, age 16, 18 and 20. But people still always ask me:

“What’s the secret to being a good parent today?”

I always laugh and think, “Ha… do you want theory or practice?


Christian Education News


kidZone shirt orange

It’s hard to look past the simplicity when Jesus points it out, plain as day. All the rules and laws can be summed up to two requirements; love God and love one another. So if it sounds so simple, then why is it so hard to do? That’s exactly what we’re going to be talking about on Wednesday nights in May.


Lots of great things have happened at kidZone this school year. We’ll celebrate it all to end this month.




It’s such a tiring and thankless job. It’s 18 years of hard work and training them. Just when you finally have them acting like you want, it’s time for you to move out. Yeah, raising parents can be tough. That’s why our youth ministry is here for you. This month we will provide industry tried and true secrets to raise your parents properly.


Summer Schedule

If you would like to see what is going on in youth ministry this summer, visit our website at to get a look ahead.


Kiddie Kollege News

Did You Know?

At the end of April, teachers were able to share with our students about the Good News of why we celebrate Easter.  Many of them thought Easter was about candy and bunnies.  What a blessing to share that Jesus dying but not staying in the grave is our reason for celebrating!

Our last day of preschool is Thursday, May 15.  We will be taking a walking field trip to the Winona Lake Park.

Graduation is Friday, May 17 at 7 p.m.  You may not have a child/grandchild attend our school, but we would love to have your help that night, either serving or cheering and congratulating. 

Preschool ends for the summer but our child care ministry will be open during the summer.  Our attendance looks so good right now, that we are planning to divide into age groups.  One group will be 2-4 year olds and the other group will be ages 5 and up.  We plan to keep the children entertained by taking lots of field trips.