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Missions Program a Key Part of Christian Education

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Puerto Rico

Like all of us, the students and teachers at Wesleyan School enjoy their spring and summer breaks. For 270 Wesleyan School students and faculty members, however, the breaks allow them the opportunity to spend some of their time serving through mission teams.

During their spring break of March 18-25, Wesleyan School teams visited Clarkston, Ga., Chattanooga, Tn., Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guatemala, Jamaica, Puerto Rico and Bulgaria. In June, a team will head to South Africa.

Wesleyan Head of School Chris Cleveland said that since 2005, the school has sent over 1,000 students and faculty “…to do what we believe Jesus Christ calls us to do — serve our neighbors. For our missions program, ‘neighbor’ can be right here in Atlanta, or in places like Bulgaria, South Africa, Ecuador or just up I-75 in Chattanooga.”

The program, which began with a handful of faculty and students on one trip, has become an annual tradition. In addition to the spring break mission with teams traveling near and far, the school sends another team to more distant locations every other summer. This year, a team will serve in South Africa.

“We find that not only does the missions program follow the command of Christ to serve our fellow man, but it also helps us fulfill what we are called to do as Christian educators,” said Wesleyan Director of Christian Life Greg Lisson. “When we travel with students to other places it helps students see who their ‘neighbor’ is, what service looks like and what other cultures and life experiences look like.”

Cleveland added that the Wesleyan missions program is one of the most defining aspects of the school’s community. “It’s a key part of our approach to Christian education,” he said, “and providing the opportunity for students to see firsthand what Christ-like service looks like is one of the most important things we do each school year.” ■

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Faith

Intentionally Trans-Cultural Reconcile Church Opens in Duluth

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A new church is getting ready to bloom in Duluth. Reconcile Church has a mission of bringing together diverse groups of people and fostering understanding through shared worship and experiences.

Nutured by Renovation Church in downtown Atlanta, Reconcile Church is taking root at 3200 Pleasant Hill Road, at Duluth Middle School. Pastor Sam Kang, who served on staff at Renovation Church, is following his call to lead a church rooted in justice + mercy in Gwinnett County. The Kangs also served at Perimeter Church in Johns Creek.

“We hope to provide a space to experience a belonging community, one in which we can partner with our neighbors and community leaders in a spirit of reconciliation,” Pastor Kang said.

He added that the church seeks to be an intentionally trans-cultural environment, “so some Sundays, don’t be surprised if you hear us singing praise in Japanese, Spanish, Korean, Swahili and English.”

Regular Sunday gatherings start on Sept. 22, 9:45-11:15 a.m.; doors open at 9:25 a.m. Services are informal, and everyone is encouraged to come “dressed as you are on Sundays.” A seven-week launch series—Be Reconcile; GO Reconcile—will be offered. For details and more information, go to reconcileatl.com or facebook.com/reconcileatl.

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Stories Night Returns in November

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Gwinnett County is one of the most diverse counties in the South, and it’s also home to Reconcile Church, which is committed to providing a space to bring together people of different cultures.

The idea of Stories Night on Race in America is that stories can help to bridge the experiences of diverse people and lead them to better understanding. “When stories on race can be told, people are heard and advocates are formed,” said Sam Kang, Pastor of Reconcile Church in Duluth.

The most recent Stories Night took place on Aug. 25 at Shorty Howell Park Pavilion. Attendee Michael Aissen said that the event was “…one of the most impactful nights in a long time, when it comes to hearing perspectives different than mine.”

The hour-long Stories Night events are held in the evening, 6:30-7:30 p.m. Doors open at 6 p.m. with light refreshments, allowing time to chat with neighbors. The next Stories Night is in the planning stages and is currently slated for November. To find out more about Stories Night and other gatherings organized through Reconcile Church, visit reconcileatl.com or facebook.com/reconcileatl.

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Faith

Kids Basketball at Peachtree Corners Baptist Church

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Peachtree Corners Baptist Church (PCBC) has a long-running basketball program. This 240 plus player recreational basketball league provides a well run, fun, Christ-centered program for boys and girls ages 7-12 years old.

Players are coached by one or two Christian coaches who emphasize the importance of working together as a team and striving to always do your best.

Teams will have one practice a week and one game on Friday nights for 7-8-year-olds and Saturdays for 9-12-year-olds.  Practices will begin on Tuesday, November 5th. 

The 9 game season begins in December and ends in February. PCBC’s 9-10 and 11-12 leagues will end with a tournament.

Some leagues will also play against other local leagues. Registration opens at 9:00 am, Saturday, September 8.  To register visit https://www.pcbchurch.org/basketball

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