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RELIGIOUS NEWS AND VIEWS

Striaght From The Heart

Rev. Kevin L. Hairston, Sr.

Choices

Life will always be centered at a crossroad. We are forever being confronted with having to make a choice about one thing or another. In whatever direction we choose to go in we are responsible for our decisions. One step in growing towards maturity is learning to accept responsibility for our actions. We are living in a society that claims when one goes astray to the norms and the mores of society it has to be someone elses fault. We see this day after day on the morning talk shows. One excuse I hear often is about an individuals upbringing. Mon and dad didnÕt spend enough time with the child or Dad divorced mon and so she had to work extra long and hard to provide for the child and now the child leans to the excuse of not having any discipline or guidance as the reason for being imprisoned. Another excuse I hear is that the teachers didnÕt take the necessary time to insure the individual understood the material that was being taught and somehow they passed through the educational system and now can't get a decent job making that amount of money they think they deserve and they refuse to work for a fast food chain and so the individual would much rather stand on the corner and sell drugs.' These are only a couple of excuses that I have heard as the determining factor for the choices some have made. Society would have you to believe that itÕs not your fault but regardless of what society thinks you are at fault and are held accountable for your choices. ItÕs time we quit going through life blaming others for how we behave and how we live. We each have the freedom to choose what direction our life will go in. I don't know what choices you have made concerning your life or what choices you need to make, but at one time in many of our lives we decided to give our lives to Christ and allow god to order our steps. We decided that we would to the best of our ability seek first His Kindom and His righteousness until the return of christ. Ever since that day and in the years ahead that decision will be tested time and time again. There will be many experiences that will attempt to sway our commitment to christ. What will you do? Will you continue to serve God or will you walk in another direction? Our experiences will be similar to those that the Israelites faced as they approached the Promised Land. In JoshuaÕs farewell speech he informed them that they had to make a decision. Would they serve the gods of Egypt, the gods of the Amorites or the true and living God that delivered them from bondage in Egypt. Would they serve God or not? They had to make up their minds and so do we. In the days, weeks, months and years ahead there will be several times when you will have to decide. Will you serve Christ regardless of what comes your way or will you be lured by temptation and compromise your faith. One day we each must stand before God. Who will we blame, what excuses do you think God will except from you for not choosing Christ? The choice is yours! Grandma, Momma or Dad canÕt do it for you. But itÕs possible that they can help direct you providing that theyÕve made Jesus their choice. You must sooner or later, take responsibility for your life! Regardless of what decision the children of Israel would make Joshua knew his direction,Ó as for me and my house we will serve the Lord.

Eighth Street Baptist Church Family Celebrated Pastor s Eleventh Anniversary
by
Joyce S. Williams

On May 4, 1997, we the Eighth Street Baptist Church family celebrated out Pastor s Eleventh Anniversary, Rev. Dr. Arthur A. Holmes, Sr. It was a blessed occasion where everyone appeared to be on one accord. Even the preacher for the Anniversary service was dynamic. The Rev. Melvin Palmer, pastor of The First Buffalo Baptist Church, Long Island, Virginia, delivered a message that we will never forget if we had ears to hear it. The choir from First Buffalo sang like a multitude of Angels, they were beautiful, you could feel the spirit moving in the place, touching each one with chords of love, joining us as one praising and glorifying His name, for He is worthy to be praised. It was a great celebration. Our Pastor s Aid Club did a beautiful job in planning and implementing the Pastor s Anniversary program. For a score I would give them a 100 for a job well done. Now I understand why Pastor always say we have the best Pastor s Aid Club in the whole world, he is right you know, they are good, they know their job. God wanted to free the Israelites from Egypt, He called on Moses to be their leader and led them out of Egypt, He wanted someone to fight Goliath, He called on the young shepherd boy David to do the job, He called on Joshua to blow the trumpet and bring the Jericho walls down. He looked around and said I must send someone to be a leader at Eighth Street Church for our leader had gone on to glory land. He called on Arthur A. Holmes and said I want you to lead My children at Eighth Street Church. Rev. Holmes is an outstanding Pastor, a sincere leader. He is a pastor who does more than is required of him. He is not too big to do things that we, his parishioners, ask of him. He will do whatever is necessary for building God's Kingdom. He is a true pastor not just a preacher and a God fearing man. I do not doubt that the celebration of the Anniversary was honestly from the hearts of all the disciples of the church, for even the attendance was good. We all know that people don t give gifts just to be giving and do not care about, they give gifts because they care; or you have been doing something good. Rev. Holmes is doing a tremendous job and was presented with many gifts of love and appreciation. Rev. Holmes, may God continue to use you and you continue to be obedient to His commandments, you will be blessed as only He can bless you. After the Benediction, we moved into the Fellowship Hall for a repass and to fellowship with one another, the delicious food and the fellowship were enjoyable. The entire celebration of the Pastor s Eleventh Anniversary will not be forgotten, it was an evening to be remembered for a very long time. May God bless our Pastor and his family and all those that were a part of the celebration. Thank you .

Rev. Jack Wilson
Receives Doctrine Degree in Ministry

Rev. Jack Wilson of Gretna, Virginia recently received his Doctoral Degree in Ministry from Southwest Bible College and Seminary in Sulphur, Louisiana. He is the pastor of the First St. Paul Baptist Church in Rustburg, Virginia, where he has served for twenty-six years. He is married to Dollie Wilson and the proud father of five children and ten grandchildren. Pastor Wilson is our teacher, preacher, counselor, administrator, mediator, serviceman, and watchman. He is known as our Jack of all trades. Pastor WilsonÕs ministry has touched the lives of many. He currently have ten sons and daughters in the ministry. He is also the host on the radio ministry A Look in God's Word on 105.5 FM at 7:15 a.m. every Sunday morning. He is also the Instructor and Chancellor of the Extension Class of the International Seminary. A seminary projected from First St. Paul Baptist Church Rustburg, Virginia. He teaches the words Study to show thyself approved". He is a well learned and informed Pastor. Rev. Wilson represents his church and community in many aspects. He is there at all times, Rev. Wilson always said Yes To The Lord . We love you and congratulations on your accomplishments. Church Family of First St. Paul Baptist Church

Marion Cook
Honored At BGC Missions

Mrs. Marion Cook, president of the WomenÕs Missionary Society at First Baptist Church of Altavista, Virginia was named Area ÒEÓ honoree for 1997 at the Annual MissionsÕ Day for the Division of Women of Baptist general Convention of Virginia. she was surprised with the announcement of her selection and with a small gift by Mrs. Joyce Williams, Area ÒEÓ, District 3 chairperson onSatureday, April 1997 at Memorial Baptist Church in South boston, Virginia. Over 200 missionaries, both men and women gathered on that day to praise God, to discuss their roles as missionaries, to honor members of their respective churches, to memoralize deceased church members, to fellowship together, and to hear what Òthus says the LordÓ. The highlight of the day was a very moving, inspiritn message brought by Area ÒEÓ vice-president Dr. Addie P. Doublas, retired educator form the Lynchburgf, Virginia School system. Dr. Dougals implored the missionaires thatÓactionÓ should be the key word as we dspread the message of Christanity and that commitment to our roles as missionaries is a ÒmustÓ. Mrs. Lottie Hodnett memoralized the 188 deceasedmembers of Area ÒEÓ churcheas and Life Membership awards were presented to 40 persons who wre chosen by their respective churches fo this honor. 10 such awards came to District 3 missionoaries form First Baptist Church of Altiavista, Eighth Street Baptist Church and Peaceful Baptist Church of Lynchburg and Mount Sinai Baptist Church of Madison Heights. The other 30 awards were given to sel3ected missionaries from District 1 ( comprised of Danville, Chatham, Gretna and vicinity), and District 2 ( comprised of Halifax, South Boston and vicinity).

Since May 15,1997