GraceConnect E-News, No. 11, Week of September 2, 2013
The eNewsletter for the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches
Two separate stories featuring urban ministries are included in this week's eNews. Learn more about Stephen and Rosie Joyce as they meet real needs and show radical love at About My Father's House Ministries in inner-city Washington, D.C. In Columbus, Ohio, Capital City Grace Church used their movie-theatre location to reach out to their community. Read on to learn more about these ministries!

This week's featured product is The Pattern of God's Truth -- the Integration of Faith and Learning. Regularly priced at $9.99, the book is 50% off only for subscribers of GraceConnect eNews! Whether you are an educator, a pastor, parent of a student, or even a student, you'll find this classic text helpful in determining how to integrate faith in the classroom.

If you enjoy this newsletter, would you forward it to one friend within your church and encourage them to subscribe? It's the best way to stay connected with news, ministries, and events within congregations of the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches (FGBC).

Stephen and Rosie JoyceRadical Love

Pastor Stephen Joyce has a natural gift for rhetoric – there’s a rhythm and a soul to the way he forms his sentences. He’s a storyteller.

“I had a vision to start an interracial church,” Joyce says of his early ministry years, “but God led me into church planting.”

Joyce is pastor of About My Father’s Business Outreach Ministries, a Washington, D.C., Grace Brethren church which ministers weekly to many groups, including the homeless, single mothers, Hispanic groups, young girls, drug addicts, low income families and prostitutes. Joyce is personally invested in each of these ministries, and the stories spill out of him.

“I go to the mailbox and I pull out an envelope in very poor handwriting. And I open the envelope and it will say things like this: ‘Pastor Joyce, you don’t even know who I am. But you came and ministered at the jail. And I want you to know that I got saved. And I’m back with my wife, and I’m back with my family.’ And they will send a love offering – five dollars with a money order, which is like the widow's mite.

“I got a letter not too long ago from a man who was homeless and an alcoholic. ‘Pastor Joyce, I live in North Carolina now. I bought a house. I’m back with my family, and I sing in the choir.’”

These miraculous stories of restoration are only a few examples of the kind of renewal the church is witnessing in the capital city.

“People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care,” Joyce reminds us. “A hungry man doesn’t have ears.”  His church lives the definition of integrated ministry, sharing the gospel by meeting real needs and showing the radical, grace-filled love of Jesus. 

A Movie and a Redeemed Life

A movie might not have much to do with God, but it still can be used for His glory.

Larry Totzke, pastor of Capital City Grace Church in Columbus, Ohio, is still rejoicing over the work God did through an outreach ministry the church did two years ago. The young congregation rented a movie theater on Thursday nights and invited their community to come see movies for free.

Totzke remembers meeting Johnny, who came one night but made it clear that he wanted no part of God. Even so, he started coming to church, which meets in the same movie theatre on Sunday mornings.

“He said he liked coming because we didn’t make him dress up,” Larry remembers. “He could wear what he wanted to wear, and we were friendly.”

Nearly five months later, Johnny announced, “about a week or so ago I decided that God wasn’t my enemy, and I decided to turn my life over and become a follower of Jesus.”

Read the rest of the story here.

What's your story? How did Jesus find you? Share your story of redemption here.

The Pattern of God's Truth
This week's featured product

The Pattern of God's Truth

The Integration of Faith and Learning

By Frank E. Gaebelein

Regularly $9.99, now available for GraceConnect eNews subscribers ONLY at 50% off!

Simply enter the code Truth in your shopping cart at (Price is good only until midnight, September 10, 2013.)

On sale now!
At the heart of all thinking about education, whether Christian or secular, lies the problem of integration. To adopt a philosophy of education is not the same as integrating that philosophy into all the parts–curriculum, student activities, administration, and more.

This book is written by an evangelical Christian, committed to high doctrine and a worldview based on biblical truth, whose primary consideration is Christian education. Its pages seek to help educators who are Christian achieve a living union between Christianity and education.

Events in the FGBC

September 4-16 â€“ Argentine Ministry Trip (WGUSA)
September 18  â€“ Super Wednesday (GCS, CEN)
September 29 â€“ Prayer Sprint (EWP) through October 28
October 7-9 â€“ Central Focus Retreat (FGBC, Maumee Bay State Park, Ohio)
October 21-23 â€“ East Focus Retreat (FGBC, Ocean City, Md.)
November 3 â€“ Day of Generosity (EWP)
November 5 – Super Wednesday (GCS, CEN)
November 15-16, 2013 – Women's Leadership Class, Wooster, Ohio (WGUSA)
January 27-29, 2014 â€“ Southwest Focus Retreat (FGBC, location to be announced)
January 29-31, 2014 â€“ Fellowship Council (FGBC, location to be announced)
July 17-21, 2014 â€“ Vision2020 DC (FGBC)
July 22-27, 2014 â€“ Momentum Youth Conference (CEN)

CEN – CE National
EWP – Encompass World Partners
FGBC â€“ Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches
GCS  â€“  Grace College & Seminary
WGUSA â€“ Women of Grace USA
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