This month’s Tidings is dedicated to the importance of belonging. Asbury has 35 discipleship communities, where members seek to nurture one another in living the life of a disciple. Communities are designed for warm fellowship, spiritual growth, and serving others. We have featured half of the communities this month and will feature the rest next month. If you are not part of a discipleship ommunity, we hope that the stories will inspire you to find one that fits your needs. Here are four easy ways to find a community that is right for you: 1. Check out the Discipleship Communities brochure available at the Welcome Centers. 2. Check out the website: http://www.asburytulsa.org/ getinvolved/communities/index.html 3. Ask a friend or another church member which community they belong to, and ask them to take you with them. 4. Call the church (492-1771) and we will help you.
inside tidings 3-4
This Month at Asbury
Notes from the Journey
6 - 25
26 - 29
Calendar of Events
30 - 35
According to Acts 2:42, the early church “devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.” The word fellowship is the Greek word Koinonia, which among many other things means community, join, participation, sharing, partnership, relationship, and association. Merriam-Webster defines fellowship as “a community of interest, activity, feeling, or experience.” The life of a church is in its community of believers. Koinonia provides a sense of belonging, oneness, purpose, and love. Christ’s love experienced and expressed in our many communities at Asbury is our
COMMUNITY I was talking with a member who told me about someone interested in Asbury but was confused by the term, “Discipleship Community.” He thought it sounded like a “commune.” I laughed when I heard it, because it is classic communication theory--what the Dr. Tom Harrison sender intends is not necessarily, Senior Pastor what the hearer receives. The reason we have “Discipleship Communities” at Asbury, instead of “Sunday school” (though I am certainly not offended when someone refers to them with the latter terminology) is that we want to emphasize more than “Sunday” and more than “school.” Taken literally, Sunday school indicates we do Christian education one day a week. We want our communities to be much more than merely an educational experience. We want people to find friendships here and to find meaningful ways to serve, as well as to grow deeper in their understanding of their faith. Discipleship communities reflect the three B’s in our “Vision Statement” (“belong to the Family of God, believe in the Lord Jesus, and become servants of Christ). Lots of people, and particularly men, find it difficult to go to a Sunday school class. They think that everyone else knows a lot more about the bible than they do. They feel that someone is going to call upon them to read a passage out of the bible, to make a profound spiritual comment about the Christian faith, or to pray a prayer that would make the Apostle Paul smile. The truth is our communities try hard to welcome and include everyone, regardless of their spiritual background. Sometimes people will criticize us because of our size. The truth of the matter is that the vast majority of our members are only going to know a 100 people or so. We simply do not have the time and the energy to know everyone in a local church (unless it has about 100 members). Communities are ways of being “the small church in the big church.” We are able to know and care for one another in wonderful ways. I can tell such great stories about these things happening at Asbury; it usually (though not always, of course) happens in a discipleship community. Please consider joining a community. We have brochures available, but it is easily accessed by visiting our website: www.asburytulsa.org. Click “Get Involved” and go to “Discipleship Communities.”
See you Sunday!
greatest witness to the world. Sola Akala
photo by Christy Capps
The Value of Community “They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe, and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the apostles . . . they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.” — Acts 2:42-47
Within the larger congregation of Asbury United Methodist Church are almost 40 groups of believers known as Discipleship Communities. These communities provide a structure of strategic relationships for the people of Asbury to glorify God and make disciples through belonging, believing and becoming. In these pages of Tidings, you are going to read many marvelous stories of the lives of people who have been positively impacted through their involvement in an Asbury discipleship community. In his classic book Life Together, Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote: “ . . .how inexhaustible are the riches that open up for those who by God’s will are privileged to live in the daily fellowship of life with other Christians!” Bonhoeffer was simply reflecting upon the words
Valentine Celebrations Asbury Methdodist Men’s
Valentine Banquet & Dance Saturday, February 11 at 6:30 pm Renaissance Hotel Cost: $30 per person Deadline to purchase tickets: February 8
Asbury Single’s Ministry
Valentine Dance Saturday, February 11 Asbury’s Community Life Center Tickets available through Asbury Singles’ Ministry
of King David, “Behold how good and pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity!” (Psalm 133:1) In an Asbury discipleship community, you will find incredible opportunities to care for and be cared for by fellowship believers. In other words, you will develop meaningful friendships with others who love and serve Jesus just as you do, or wish to. Through Bible study teaching, discussions and small groups, you will grow in your knowledge of the Bible and in your devotion to following Jesus more closely. And in discipleship communities you will discover an abundance of opportunities to serve alongside others in ministry, missions and community service. As you read these stories, I invite you to consider whether or not you are “in fellowship” with other followers of Jesus; that is, in fellowship to such an extent that you are
Want to Build a Better Marriage? Sponsored by Oklahoma Marriage Initiative and Asbury
Six Thursdays February 16 thru March 23 6:30-8:30 pm in the CLC Offered to the entire Tulsa community Falling in love is easy! Staying in love is easy, too, if you learn “love skills” to stop the four corrosive behaviors that ruin relationships. Open to single people and couples who are dating, engaged or married. C-PREP materials are used. Come as you are. No cost. No childcare available.
experiencing the fullness of God’s desire for you in living out your faith in community with other believers. Bonhoeffer hit the bull’s eye when he wrote: “Let him who is not in community beware of being alone. Into the community you were called, the call was not meant for you alone; in the community of the called you bear your cross, you struggle, you pray. You are not alone, even in death, and on the Last Day you will be only one member of the great congregation of Jesus Christ.” Let this issue of Tidings be your invitation to explore and join one of Asbury’s discipleship communities! If you need help in identifying a discipleship dommunity that is just-right for you, please call on any of your pastors. - Rev. Dick Read Pastor of Discipleship
Asbury Brass and Organ Concert Sunday, February 19 6:00 pm in the Sanctuary Come experience the rich sounds of Asbury’s own musicians! Enjoy an evening of music presented by the Asbury Brass Quintet and Rosanna Corrales.
Take Stock in Student Missions! It’s time to invest in student missions! This isn’t just a chance to give, it’s a chance to invest with BIG returns. Stock money is used to support students in mission throughout the year. This includes spring break (expecting 280+), summer (expecting 120+), and other mission opportunities as they arise (i.e. Katrina relief, etc.). Asbury students will be serving in the following locations during Spring Break:
7th grade: inner city Houston 8th grade: rural Kentucky 9-10th grades: Reynosa, Mexico 11-12th grades: Guatemala City In addition, during the summer our students do lots of local mission projects. Our high school students will be returning to John 3:16 to lead VBS for at risk kids and our junior high students will be plugging into ministries like The Little Light House, Project Transformation, The Community Food Bank, etc. It’s really missions in our own backyard. Stock money only covers a portion of the cost of student mission projects. To engage the number of stu-
dents and leaders we have, plus the number of projects we are working on this year, we need to raise $90,000. Students will be visiting adult discipleship communities to share personal stories and pictures during the month of February. This is a chance for people to ask questions and get a more personal take on what student missions is all about. Youth Stock envelopes will be available in the pews in February. Asbury has ALWAYS been tremendously generous in supporting our students in mission. Be praying about how you might be involved.
serving the Lord and serving others. Our students, many of whom had never seen the types of conditions we witnessed, did this through their labor, their witness, and their prayers. I realized, with the help of Kerry and Randy Loescher, that I was missing something. I thought that my life was pretty complete with my family, my career, and my limited church involvement. I realized what many of our students learned years earlier on previous mission trips. There is much more we can do to
serve our Lord. Asbury gives us these opportunities through its’ support of mission trips, summer of service, Dayspring camps, VBS, and all the other activities our congregation supports so generously. Without that support our students would certainly be less challenged to reach their spiritual potential, and I might not have ever realized that I had never reached mine. After Guatemala, I know that at least two of our students have chosen to be missionaries. Others are considering it, and I resolved to be more active in our church, especially in the missions area. I look forward to returning to Guatemala in the spring, this time with 42 students, and I am excited that this time, my wife Linda, will join us. We are also excited that we are all going to Estonia next summer with Asbury to support our mission there. Thank you Asbury for your continued support, and thank you for allowing me the privilege of working with your students. In His Steps, Rodney Huey
Why I Give In March, 2003, I had the opportunity to participate in the Asbury Youth Mission to Guatemala. I was one of seven adult sponsors to travel with 30 Asbury juniors and seniors, including our son, Ryan, to Guatemala City. While I was really looking forward to the trip, I was also quite apprehensive. Prior to that, I was what Tom Harrison likes to call a “cafeteria Christian.” I was comfortable coming on Sundays, seeing friends at Easter and Christmas, and going my way after services. I could pick and choose the things in which I participated. This mission trip was truly as much of a life changing experience for me as it was for our students. In Guatemala, I had the opportunity to leave my “comfort zone.” I saw the love and work of God through our students and had the opportunity to work with an incredibly beautiful and proud people. I learned more about the Lord and myself from our students than they ever could learn from me, and I had a chance to see how important these types of opportunities are for our students and our church. The Bible tells us that there is no higher calling than
Rodney with a new friend in Guatemala TIDINGS 4
Notes from the Journey
Lonely Planet, Part One
t the corner of Rush and Michigan Avenues is a mass of people quickstepping through the crosswalk. This is downtown Chicago on a Saturday night—a week before Christmas. They call it the Magnificent Mile and we are all magnificently bound together with a probable common cause: Christmas shopping. There might be a kind of communal feel to it if we knew one another…and if the wind wasn’t freezing my face, making it impossible to smile. We all move along in a kind of synchronized strut, stepping aside for those with strollers and the inevitable group that walks with arms linked together. We are aware of each other’s presence, yet mostly unconcerned. Life beyond the Magnificent Mile can feel that way too sometimes. In the midst of the crowd of people that surround us, we see each other but keep a friendly distance. Tulsa isn’t a big city, but try navigating 71st Street and Mingo Avenue during rush hour on a Friday. It’s easy to lose perspective. Suddenly, the individual person is lost 5
by lisa tresch to us, and all we see is a crowd. When I moved to Richmond, Virginia to attend graduate school I was hemmed in on all sides by people, yet I knew no one. For the first time in my life I felt the ache of loneliness. It was brutal. Scientific studies show that lonely people are at greater risk for heart disease, possibly due to differences in how their cardiovascular system reacts in times of stress. It would seem that being lonely is an unnatural state for the body, and that we were created for relationships. People who don’t have them wither. You can’t always spot a lonely person. They don’t wear a sign, and most of the time they don’t announce they are lonely. It’s much easier to put a mask over the emptiness and go on as best they can. There are places they can go. Bars are popular destinations for the lonely soul. At a bar you find a sense of community—especially if there is a televised sporting event above the bar. Shopping malls are also good places to soothe a lonely heart. Consumerism can do wonders to momen-
tarily drown the ache of loneliness. I’ve often wondered if church is a good place for a lonely person. In graduate school I attended a church on the outskirts of town. I slipped into the pew each week and watched as people greeted one another and talked about communal things—the dinner Tuesday night, the softball game, the Bible study last week. They smiled and greeted me but something was missing. I sat in the church pew, but I might as well have been walking the Magnificent Mile. There was no community within the walls of this church for me. I was simply sitting in the midst of a crowd. On the face of this lonely planet, the church offers a kind of community that can wrap arms around the emptiness. I learned that much later in life, and I did not learn it sitting in the pew. I learned it in small places, in small crowds of people who knew my name--and my sorrows, hang-ups, quirks and joys and still loved me anyway. It sounds simple, but I think it’s more like…magnificent.
Jennifer Stewart jabez discipleship community
ennifer Stewart attended worship services at Asbury for three years and had no other contact with the church. This is hard to believe when you talk to her now. Ryan and Janelle Carter were heading a committee to start a new community at Asbury to fill a need for a mixed group of singles and young married couples. Ryan knew Jennifer from work and knew she was not plugged into a community so he invited her to help. This planning group met for about six months, and The Jabez Community had its first meeting in September 2001. Jennifer said, “It was great to get connected!” She grew up in Tyler, Texas in a family that loved God. “I grew up as a believer,” she said, “and don’t remember a time when I didn’t know and love the Lord. We were always in church, and I attended Vacation Bible Schools as a child, and went to Young Life camps in high school and was a Young Life leader in college.” A Tulsan for eight years, Jennifer began coming to Asbury after hearing Perceptions. She is a CPA and tax
manager in the oil and gas industry. Her company has recently been sold, and sadly for Asbury, Jennifer has another job waiting for her in Dallas. She feels God is “enlarging her territory” as called for in Jabez’s prayer. “My friends,” she says, “have played a huge part in equipping me to go to this new place. I know these friends are praying for me.” She loves the fellowship in the class and especially the women’s Bible study group that meets during the week. She says, “We are Beth Moore junkies.” (Beth Moore is a wellknow author of Bible studies written mainly for women.) She’s made her closest friends in this study group. “This is the first time I’ve had quality Christian friendship where I felt accountable in the area of spiritual growth. This is good peer pressure!” She adds that the men have a midweek group too. “The ministry opportunities in the class are a blessing. We’re always doing service projects like helping paint the Wesley Foundation or the Tahlequah Methodist Children’s Home, and we go on some of the VIM trips to various parts
of Mexico. I’m a “fanatical dog lover so I’ve also been active in the PAWS (Pets are Working Saints) Ministry.” Supper Clubs is one of the social activities in Jabez that Jennifer enjoys. With ten or so people in each club, they usually eat together once a month, and reorganize every three or four months with different people. Jabez even has its own website, www.jabezcommunity.com. “Some of us travel so it’s nice to log on and see the prayer requests and what went on in class. It’s also a good way to learn about our community if someone is looking around.” “This sounds so trite,” Jennifer said, “but you get out of something what you put into it. If you only go to receive, you could be disappointed.” The Jabez Prayer: “And Jabez called on the God of Israel saying, ‘Oh, that You would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that Your hand would be with me, and that you would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain!’ So God granted him what he requested.” I Chronicles 4:10 (NKJV) -Marty McBroom Jabez meets at 9:15 in RM 2821
he Ark, a community of young couples (20s and 30s) many with young children, share a great deal in common with one another. They share the joys of newlyweds and growing families, new jobs and promotions, parties and celebrations. They also share in the more difficult and hard to understand trials of life. Members Kim and Micah Bevins say the compassion and concern and most of all prayers of the class gave them a special peace at the most difficult time of their lives. Kim Miller grew up at Asbury where her parents, Kent and Joanne Miller, have been long-time members. Micah Bevins “chose” Asbury as a senior in high school after having grown up in another denomination. The girl from Jenks High and the boy from Union High found common ground at church. They attended the University of Oklahoma, were married and returned to Tulsa in 2003 where Micah started his practice as a dentist. “The first Sunday we were back in town we visited The Ark and have been active in the community ever since,” Kim said. In September 2005, women from The Ark had a shower for Kim to celebrate the upcoming birth of the Bevins’ second child (their daughter,
for friends and acquaintances to know how to respond, to know what to do. People wonder if a call, a visit, some sort of response to those grieving would be helpful or add to the pain. Members of The Ark did not hesitate. Micah said, “As for Kim and me, we now know these are times to step up to the plate and offer care and concern. It helps in so many ways.” Kim and Micah have a special remembrance of their son. Her sister Kathy was on hand for the birth and recorded the time with her camera. As things worsened in the neonatal intensive care unit, a nurse told her to continue to take pictures. She hesitated but was convinced it was something that in time would hold great meaning for the family. The photos taken by Kathy were placed on a DVD edited by her husband with “Hello, Goodbye” by Michael W. Smith as background music. Kim feels their experience has brought their class closer together. It’s easy to share life’s joys and difficult to share life’s tragedies, but what matters is the sharing. The Bevins’ witness testifies to that. -Liz Reece
Kim & Micah Bevins the ark discipleship community
Ella, is three years old). The shower was on Thursday. The following Sunday, Kim went into labor five weeks early. The pregnancy had been without flaw and when a more than four pound boy was born they had great hope. However, Carter Lane Bevins lived only three hours. His lungs were not sufficiently developed. Rev. Dub Ambrose baptized Carter in the neonatal intensive care unit. After hearing the initial prognosis they prayed and cried out for a miracle. “We realize the miracle came in the form of God’s mercy in preparing an eternal home that is all Carter will ever need,” Kim said. Within two hours of his death a handful of The Ark members were there to hold and cry with the Bevins. They started immediately helping with meals and other details. In the following weeks and months they have continued to sustain them with all manner of thoughtful support. In such situations it is often difficult
The Ark meets at 11:00 in RM 1508
Kelsey O’Halloran friends in Christ discipleship community
elsey O’Halloran is a world traveler. She has been to England and most recently, she traveled to Ireland with her mother, Pam (a member of Faithbuilders). If there is one quality that characterizes Kelsey, it is her passion for people. At the ripe old age of 32, Kelsey doesn’t let the fact she has a disability hold her back. She’s on a mission to make the world a better place. As a member of Friends in Christ, she demonstrates her compassion time and again when she comforts a friend or offers a word of encouragement to someone who is feeling low. She is a giver. Recently in class she expressed her gratitude for her community and her friends in the class. She even thanked her teacher. That is another endearing quality of Kelsey. She feels blessed and she freely gives thanks. She loves coming to church, learning about Jesus, praying and singing God’s praises. She also loves the class discussions and is a frequent contributor. If you meet Kelsey, you’ll be struck with how comfortable she is with people. She is very warm and outgoing, which makes her the perfect person to work with little children. For six years Kelsey has lived independently with four
roommates and her staff, while working in childcare part time. She is involved in many disability activities and was President of Tulsa People First, an advocacy group for people with special needs. Last spring her travels took her and her mother to a conference in Richmond, Virginia. There they learned the latest findings on William’s Syndrome, the disability that affects Kelsey. She will also be part of a new study on this condition. Kelsey has a love for all people and especially those who have physical or mental challenges. Her new passion is to help other young adults realize their fullest potential by living independently as she has. She stated recently, “People with disabilities have hopes and dreams too, and want the same opportunities other people desire from life. We want jobs, we want to marry and have friends.” Kelsey has known joy in her life as well as sorrow. Two years ago, her beloved father, a brilliant science teacher at Holland Hall and Riverfield Country Day School, went to be with the Lord as a result of cancer. One Sunday morning we shared how difficult losing a loved one can be and Kelsey began to cry. She was immediately encircled by all the Friends in Christ Community and received hugs. One
member prayed for her and others who had lost friends or family members. Kelsey is a great giver and she also knows how to receive. This extraordinary young adult loves to bowl, date, go to birthday parties and spend time with her family. She is grateful for the new friends she’s made at church and for many old friends. She likes the fact that she has a place where she can use her gifts and receive encouragement from God’s word and her friends. The apostle Paul offered a prayer for the believers in 1Cor. 1:4, “I thank my God always concerning you, for the grace of God which was given you in Christ Jesus…” For those of us who know Kelsey and love her, God’s grace is radiantly evident in the many lives she touches. She is very proud of her mother Pam, who is a teacher and a recent member of the medical missions team to Tanzania. Don’t be surprised if Kelsey comes to your community asking for help in collecting used eyeglasses, small toiletries and flip flops. Kelsey is grateful to her Friends in Christ Community because it’s a place to belong, grow and serve. -Linda Petty Friends in Christ meets at 11:00 in RM 1507
ASBURY TIDINGS 88
John & Marti Curzon couples for Christ discipleship community
here came a time during their faith-walk when John and Marti Curzon began to think seriously of how to best live up to the personal implications found in Asbury’s three-word vision statement: Believe, Belong, Become. It was their belief that their community, Couples for Christ, with whom they’ve been involved since joining the Asbury family in 1982, adequately filled the first two B’s, “Believe” and “Belong”; but, that “Become” would require that they reach outside of their comfort zone in order to best serve the Body of Christ, as expressed at Asbury and, so they have. Currently John, with Marti’s assistance, is a teacher for Legacy, where they invest in the community of young married couples; Marti, with John’s assistance, is active in Asbury’s College Ministry; and John is active in the Methodist Men, where he serves as the Institutional Representative for the Boy Scouts of America programs sponsored by the church, which positively invests in the lives of young men from elementary-aged Cub Scouts to Venture Crew for older guys. Through all of their involvement, the Couples for Christ class has served as an anchor--still feeding the 9
“Believe” and “Belong” components of their joint vision. “Couples for Christ is our family”, says John. “Over the years, we have shared births, adoptions, sicknesses and we’ve lost some along the way. We’ve shared life with each other and we’ve grown together in intimacy and in friendship.” John advocates that there is an additional step after joining with a community--the small groups. John relates, “ we get the roots of practical insight from the teaching and interaction in class on Sundays, small groups allow us to build on that foundation while giving us the opportunity to become more intimately involved which each other.” He continues, “ It has been in the more intimate setting of the small group that the bulk of my spiritual growth has happened.” John also believes that the deeper friendships that are formed in small group add depth, texture and nuance to our involvement in the parent communities. John Curzon accepted Jesus as Lord of his life while still in high school some 30 plus years ago. You don’t have to talk to John very long before
you realize that he doesn’t see a dividing line between his spiritual life and, well, anything. Springing from the Couples for Christ Community, John and Marti are positively involved in the lives of young married couples and the lives of college-aged men and women. John’s work with scouting, on behalf of the Asbury community, is helping to shape the lives of young men who will eventually take their place in the larger community of our city. Believe, Belong, Become. John and Marti Curzon realize that none of these challenges which our congregation has set for themselves, collectively and individually, can be separated without making the challenge incomplete. Taken together, they are a challenge which affirms who we are becoming when we rise to accept that challenge. Couples for Christ is a community of married couples who gather together for social support and to develop relationships in Christ. The teaching is Bible-based and offers insights for the Christian family blended with contemporary Christian music. -Scott MacDonald Couples for Christ meets at 11:00 in RM 1502
David Riesen carpenter’s workshop discipleship community
avid Risen was faced with a life or death decision. He was put there through the power of prayer. It wasn’t deciding how to survive on a desert island or having to choose which wire to cut to diffuse a bomb. The quandary for David was choose to accept Christ, or life, or to continue living in darkness and death. He chose life. What David found out later was that people were praying for this to happen in his life. Some of these people had recently become Christians and part of their studying led them to put David and his salvation on their prayer list. David began “growing up” in another church in 1998. He got used to the routine of church on Sunday mornings, Sunday evenings and Wednesday nights. In the spring of 2005 David and his wife decided to try Asbury. “My wife grew up in another faith and the Methodist church is a good mix of what I know and her background,” said David. “My wife and I feel
Asbury is a perfect fit for our family.” day. The same study showed the top After a few months of attending two reasons for prayer are to seek church and community on Sunday God’s guidance and to thank God. mornings, David began longing for Praying to help others was cited by something more. only 13 percent of participants. David “I needed that mid-week boost,” sees prayer being effective not just in said David. “ I always enjoyed the his life, but also in the lives of others. opportunity to rejuvenate myself.” “Out of 100 requests in a month, He got more than he expected. do you ever see the final result?” David David began attending the asked. “I have realized that this book Carpenter’s Workshop Community on allows me to follow up with people and Wednesday nights at Asbury. Instead of see if they still need prayer.” just a fellowship group, he found an In a God-breathed role reversal, intensely-challenging, weekly Bible study. David is now in a position of active “It’s not like anything I’ve ever prayer for other people. Not just for been a part of,” David said as he health or happiness, but for the salvastruggled for the right words. “The class tion of people he knows God loves. gives you a desire to learn and provides “I absolutely pray for people’s a lot of strong life applications.” salvation everyday, because prayer is One of these life lessons David what saved me.” has taken to heart concerns prayer. He -Jeremy Burton began using a prayer book to log people and situations that need prayer. It helps David pray for these needs often. An August 2005, Newsweek/ Carpenter’s Workshop meets on Beliefnet poll showed that 64 percent Wednesdays at 6:30 in RM 1504 of respondents said they pray every
ulsa has been their home since 1984, but the journey that brought them here is filled with drama, history, and sacrifice. Nghia and Bach Cao are natives of Vietnam. Two of their four children were born in Vietnam, and they have many family members who still live there. After communist forces overtook South Vietnam in 1975, people who were associated with or supported the old government were frequently sent to “re-education camps” or to “ new economic zones.” During the late 1970s and through the 1980s, it was not unusual for authorities to pound on people’s doors in the middle of the night and take them away; never knowing if they would be killed or ever returned to their families. Since Nghia was a former employee of the South Vietnamese government, he and Bach decided to flee from Vietnam. Taking their two children, My Hanh (she is now 22) and Lam (he is now 25), they boarded a boat and escaped from Vietnam in 1983. After stays in Malaysia and the Philippines, the Cao family arrived in Tulsa in September 1984, where they joined Nghia’s sister who also had left Viet-
nam. They came to the U.S. because they wanted freedom from the Communist government. They left everything they knew and loved in order to be free. The cost of freedom was high, but as Bach says, “Freedom is never free. There is always a cost.” Even today, freedoms are very limited in Vietnam. Bach and Nghia shared that it is illegal for a nonVietnamese resident to distribute any Christian literature, and a person can be arrested for sharing their Christian faith with their neighbors. In fact, four years ago while on a visit to Vietnam, Nghia was arrested for sharing his faith. Residents are allowed to distribute Christian literature only if they receive prior approval; and likewise, pastors must submit their sermons in advance for government approval. Bach and Nghia also have two children who were born here in the U.S.—Laura, 16 and Adam, 20. The Caos began attending Asbury a little over a year ago after one of Laura’s friends invited them. Immediately, the warm and friendly feeling that pervades Asbury impressed them, and they soon became members. Bach explains, “Asbury has an open hand and an open heart. Everyone makes
you feel at home.” When it was time to join a small group, Bach and Nghia agreed that they would visit several small groups before joining one, but they didn’t make it past the Disciples Community. Disciples was the first, and the only, small group that they visited. That first Sunday in the Disciples group, they found a friendly and family-like atmosphere that drew them in. Bach says, “Sometimes when you are from a different culture, people are a little hesitant and unsure of you. However, Disciples welcomed us with open arms and it meant so much to us.” Being part of the Disciples Community gives Bach and Nghia a chance to further grow in their relationship with Christ.They feel at home in their small group. They share and learn from each other. It is a place where they share praises and encouragement with one another. Recently, Bach and Nghia returned from a visit in Vietnam. While in Vietnam, Bach and Nghia led 14 family members to Christ. That is a praise that is worth sharing! -Marcia Curley Disciples meets at 9:15 in RM 2500
Nghia & Bach Cao disciples discipleship community 11 ASBURY TIDINGS
Tammy Dixon legacy discipleship community
he’d put a lot of thought into the interview. A spiral notebook lay across her lap, with several pages of handwritten notes. From time to time she’d flip through it, checking facts or reminding herself of an individual she’d wanted to mention. Tammy Dixon was representing the Legacy Community and its impact on her life. Once she began sharing, she seemed powerless to stop. Steve and Tammy Dixon have been together forever, or at least that’s the way it seems to them. They’ve been married 15 ½ years, but have known each other since Tammy was in junior high. Four proms, college and a wedding later, the Dixon family moved to Tulsa with 3 ½-year-old Ally, and baby Reece on the way. Tammy readily admits the move away from families and the only home they’d ever known was devastating. Still, she and Steve knew if they could make a strong church connection, they’d be okay … but where? Tammy recalls their first visit to Asbury in March of 1998 as completely overwhelming. “However,” she said, “there was a feeling when you walked into the building and the people were so sweet.” By their second visit, they knew they were home. The Dixon’s spent the next
few years volunteering in Children’s Ministry and going to worship, but never connecting with a community. That is until Ken Hedrick and Rob Schaffitzel contacted Steve and asked if he and Tammy would like to be part of a new Asbury community called “Legacy.” And they didn’t just want him to be a member. They were asking him to serve as co-president, alongside Alex Stallings … and the rest is history. The Legacy Community formed in the fall of 2004, for 30- and 40something couples with kids. John Curzon, a wonderful “down-to-earth” kind of guy, is the teacher. His meticulously prepared lessons are scripturally-based, and help young families deal with the challenges of being Christ to each other and the world. The class then puts feet to those teachings, serving as a group every third Sunday in Children’s Ministry, volunteering with Special Olympics, and preparing care packages for soldiers. They also help deliver Asbury Thanksgiving and Christmas baskets. The Belonging, Believing and Becoming
committees see that all class activities are of lasting value to its members and the church or community. As for the change in Tammy and her family, the word she most used was “transformed.” Involvement in the Legacy Community has drawn she and Steve closer to God and each other, and transformed the way they parent and invest their time, talents and resources. “Asbury is family now, and we have real friends, not just acquaintances.” Tammy says she’s become a better Christian, and a better Christian parent. Her children are seeing parents unafraid to be bold in their Christianity, talking about their faith and how God is making a difference in their lives. The interview drew to a close. Tammy reached into her pocket and pulled out a neatly folded sheet of paper, on which was written Romans 12:2: “Do not conform yourselves to the standards of this world, but let God transform you inwardly by a complete change of your mind. Then you will be able to know the will of God.” “God gave me this verse today. This,” she pointed to the paper, “is Legacy. I wouldn’t have even heard Him before then.” -Debbie Wallis Legacy meets at 9:15 in RM 1502 ASBURY TIDINGS
Fred Taylor christian explorers discipleship community
ook up the word “community” in the dictionary and the first definition you’ll find is: “A group of people living in the same local.” But when it comes to the meaning of community within the body of Christ, it goes much deeper than living in the same town. To Christians, “community” is the common bond shared through our faith and commitment to Christ. We’re bound together by God’s love as members of the same body. We are learning to bear each other burdens just as if they were our own. It is this definition of community that has ministered to Fred Taylor. As a regular attendee of Sunday school and church, Fred came to know Christ personally at an early age. He was then baptized as a young teenager. And even as a child, Fred realized that there was a God always present, in sickness and health, in joy and pain. When Fred and his wife were searching for a church home 25 years ago, they were coming from two
different denominational backgrounds. They found that Asbury met their needs. Though his wife joined the Christian Explorers community, Fred did not attend Sunday school for years. But then “I finally realized I needed to be there with her and needed to become more active in the church”, says Fred. When Fred had to deal with the loss of his wife, his community was there to minister, encourage and walk alongside him. “The members of the Christian Explorers community have been a blessing to me. I cannot say enough good things about how they helped me through my wife’s death. They were there for me in person, thoughts and prayers. And they still are.” As God has used Christian Explorers to strengthen Fred’s Christian life, he now sees himself taking on more leadership responsibilities within the community. He serves as the Belonging leader of the class. Fred says, “My role is to minister to others
just as others have ministered to me.” Fred sees the community working “together as team members to do God’s work.” Christian Explorers are actively involved with several organizations outside the walls of the church – such as helping with Habitat for Humanity and assisting with a local halfway house. If you need to connect with other Christians, get involved in an Asbury community. There is one that will meet your needs, just as it has for Fred. “My community has been there for me, loving me and encouraging me during my time of need.” He continues, “My prayer is that anyone searching for a place to grow spiritually would be to find a place like I have. A place where you know the people love and care for you. -Nikki Boyd
Christian Explorers meets at 9:15 in RM 1506
hough they’ve only been involved in an Asbury community for 18 months, Jeff and Brooke Carter cannot imagine their lives without it. The Carters are an integral part of the Covenant Community, which consists of married and engaged couples in their 20s to 30s. Covenant’s first Sunday as an official Asbury community was April 18, 2004. Prior to that, a leadership team had been put in place to mobilize the start of the new community. Part of this mobilization included contacting potential new members like the Carters to make them aware of Covenant. Aaron Walton was the leadership team member that called the Carters to invite them to Covenant’s Kickoff Sunday. When Aaron called, it was just the thing Jeff and Brooke had been seeking. The Carters had been attending service regularly at the Sheridan site but felt out of place in the large and unfamiliar new building. “Honestly, we probably would have started looking for a new church. The new facility was so big and we felt very disconnected,” said Brooke. As with many couples at Asbury, the Carters had intended to start visiting communities for several months but always found an excuse to put it off. Aaron’s call was the encouragement they needed. The Carters visited that first Sunday and knew they had found a great fit. What most attracted them to the community was the opportunity to get in on the ground floor. Jeff shared, “We liked the idea of a small group that was just getting established.” Both Jeff and Brooke describe themselves as naturally active, “If we are going to do something, we don’t just sit back and watch. We like to get in on the action.” Soon, the Carters were serving as the Believing Leaders for the community. Though they are active in other areas of the church—Jeff with the Home Improvement Ministry and
Brooke with Women’s Council and nursery volunteering — Covenant is their main area of service. They will serve as 2006 co-presidents for the group. Taking on a leadership role has taught the Carters several things. “It certainly stretches you,” Brooke laughingly said.“ A year ago I would never have believed that I would be teaching in front of our class. The research and planning that goes into a lesson has really grown my knowledge of the Bible.” Jeff added, “It certainly adds a dimension to your church experience. And it gives you a big appreciation for the demands placed on the Asbury staff.” The Carters are giving back to Asbury and to Covenant but say they are definitely gaining benefits from their involvement as well. What they have found most exciting are the friends they are making as a couple. Brooke said, “In the past, we’ve had Jeff’s friends and my friends but now
we have ‘our’ friends.” Being surrounded by couples from Covenant has helped the Carter’s faith grow exponentially. “It’s great when you can grow with your friends in church and non-church settings,” Jeff said. When asked how they would describe the Covenant Community to prospective visitors, the Carters used phrases like “laid-back”, “accepting of new people”, and “fun-loving”. Jeff shared an insight, “I enjoy the class discussions. You find that we aren’t necessarily like-minded but we are like-faithed.” The church’s membership rosters show that there are over 250 couples in Covenant’s age range that aren’t currently involved with a community. The Carters encouraged anyone who is interested to visit the class, “We have snacks every Sunday. Come check us out.” -Emily Walton
Covenant meets at 9:15 in RM 2201
Jeff & Brooke Carter covenant discipleship community ASBURY TIDINGS 14
John Everett mosaic discipleship community
ig church. Big community. For a man who was shy and didn’t like large crowds coming to Asbury and subsequently the Mosaic Community was a leap of faith. John began attending Asbury shortly after his marriage. “I never imagined I would like it. For me, 50 people is a big crowd. I loved it. Asbury is the largest church I’ve ever worshiped in, but it has the smallest, most intimate atmosphere.” And Asbury has become John’s home. “I found that I needed it more and more. The Mosaic Community was a big part of my Asbury experience. I began attending as a strictly random choice, but the more I visited, the more I liked it. Slowly, but surely, they became family. They’ve taken very good care of me and spurred me on to deeper levels of spiritual maturity that I never expected to be mine. “Mosaic is what the name suggests—people from all walks of life, all ages, some a little chipped around the edges. Together they make a beautiful picture, a beautiful mosaic,” John explained. “As a group they are serious about their spiritual values and are some of the most genuinely authentic, fun-loving people I know.” With a father in the oil industry, John’s early years were spent moving “all over the country.” Here and there he would hear bits and pieces about God and religion, but it never came up in discussion. “I assumed it was an important matter, but we didn’t talk about it. It was confusing to me as a 1515ASBURY TIDINGS
child,” he said. At 14 he began visiting church with some neighbors. At a summer camp he responded to the altar call and gave his heart to the Lord. The next year his family began attending church. “I was aware that I wanted to be baptized, but I didn’t act on it until I was about to graduate from Oklahoma University. One day I randomly called a church and I asked the person that answered if I could come and talk to someone about being baptized. The person said, ‘No.’ and hung up.” John was surprised and devastated, but he persevered and called another church. They agreed to meet with him and he was baptized that evening. When John related his previous experience the pastor laughed. Apparently, that church building was sold and the man who answered the phone and replied so abruptly was just a random worker in the building. A highly educated man with degrees in geophysics, engineering and law, John found himself pondering certain aspects of the spiritual life. “I’m rather cerebral and analytical and not emotional. When people would talk about a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, I just didn’t understand. I prayed for a closer relationship with Him. Then, over these past three years there have been many events—some horrible—that brought me to my knees both literally and figuratively,” he said. During this difficult time John began to grow spiritually. He found he
was yearning for a deeper experience with the Lord. One Sunday Robbie Creager spoke about Celebrate Recovery in Mosaic. He thought, “Interesting, but not for me.” Then Liz Mitchell told him Nancy Williams lead the Praise and Worship team at CR. He had long admired her voice when she was singing in the Living Room Service at Asbury’s former location. “I decided I’d just go and listen to her the next Monday. I was thrilled and I began attending regularly. I’ve been there ever since. My involvement with CR has been incredibly rewarding and healing. I meet so many special people who are literally being as transformed as I am. If anyone is seeking a thrill, why would they not come and witness what I’m seeing take place?” When Mosaic was adding another mission outreach to their schedule, they decided to prepare and serve the food at Celebrate Recovery. They’ve faithfully fulfilled this role for many months, freeing the other volunteers to concentrate on leading small groups and meeting the other vital needs of that ministry. During his three years at Asbury John has discovered that large doesn’t mean cold and impersonal. Instead, through involvement in small groups he has found community, meaningful purpose and enhanced spiritual growth. -Sandy Wagner Mosaic meets at 11:00 in RM 2818
Travis Potter breakaway
photo by Erin Tresch
t’s more laid back, more open, and the singing is better,” said sophomore Travis Potter. After being raised in another denomination by his mother, the transition to the Methodist church was a little “weird.” Three years ago his father invited his son Travis to join him at Asbury where he had begun attending a few weeks earlier. This name was not new to Travis’ ears. Many of his friends from school were members of the church and actively involved in the youth program. He sat through the traditional service in the sanctuary of the old church. Sitting at his father’s side, singing old hymns from the Methodist hymnal, and then going on with his week. Born and raised a Tulsan, Travis has always attended Union Public Schools. In the eighth grade he joined the football team and still enjoys playing for the high school. It is tough, as a sophomore at such a large school to make the starting line up, but that does not hold him back. About the same time he picked up football was the time he and his father began
attending Asbury. Nearly a year and a half went by before Travis felt connected and finally got plugged in with the youth. It was during Asbury’s exciting move to the present location that Potter became overwhelmed with this same excitement and hunger to get involved. Most of his friends, as well as many other youth, attended the Living Room Service, now held in the Chapel. he decided to try it out. All his friends were there, the fellowship was good and the singing was great. Soon, Travis was right at home among the youth of Asbury. Since he already had friends from school who are members of Asbury and involved in the youth group, making new friends was no problem. He is there in the Breakaway room every Wednesday and every Sunday, learning, growing, and fellowshipping with other youth. Travis is now one of nine young men in Chris Cooper’s small group. They meet every Sunday to hang out and talk. “It’s great to hang out with other Christians. It’s a good way to make
friends. No bad influences!” said Travis. Spring missions are a large focus in the Breakaway room. Junior high and high school students are greatly encouraged to participate every year. As a freshmen Travis joined the high school team of youth who went to Mexico over spring break. They helped clean up old churches, performed street dramas, and had an opportunity to play with the children living in the orphanage. He had never been outside the country before but enjoyed hearing the stories stories and learning their culture. He encourages everyone to participate in spring missions at least once because it is an experience he will not soon forget. Though Travis struggled to find his place at first, he soon found not just a church, not just another youth group, not just the faces of all the people under the steeple. He found a family. He found a place of sanctuary where he can come and grow in his spiritual walk along with hundreds of other youth like himself. He is involved. He is a part. He is plugged in. -Melissa Breece Breakaway meets at 9:15 a.m. in the Breakaway worship area. ASBURY TIDINGS 16
ig things come in small packages, they say...and Denice Brice is certainly proof of that! A founding member of Harvest, Denice is small in stature and huge in heart. “I grew up going to church, and one of my favorite memories was going on fishing trips with my parents’ Sunday School class. When I joined Asbury, it was only natural that I look for an adult class to attend. Since I was separated, the natural fit seemed to be a singles class. However, I settled into a class of marrieds and singles and have been active in Harvest since its inception.” Although Denice jumped into community with both feet, she still had doubts. Her passion and enthusiasm for life would not her allow to just “say” she believed in God. “I really wanted to KNOW I did. I would read and pray, longing to know in my heart of hearts that God is here in our universe” According to Denice, she began to realize there was a little voice that spoke to her heart. Often it was “heard” in times of devastating circumstances. “I concluded it must be the Holy Spirit. It was my first realization that I was being guided to do the right thing, even though I often ignored the advice.
More importantly, that inner voice encouraged me to continue forward through one crisis after another.” Tom’s sermons kept her coming back to Asbury, where she soon felt at home. She attended an Exploration Class where Dub Ambrose, Asbury’s Pastor to Men, spoke and in five minutes explained the faith in a manner that she understood for the first time. Not long after that she attended a new member appointment with Dick Read, Pastor of Discipleship. “I told him I was really having a hard time believing in Jesus, and instead of looking shocked or disappointed, he just smiled and said, ‘You have come to the right place.’” Soon Denice found herself in the company of several women in her community who encouraged her. One of them suggested that her literal mind might resonate with the book, A Case for Christ, by Lee Stroebel. She completed reading that book on a mission trip to Mexico and it’s message began breaking through the barriers of doubt. “I cannot say my heart is totally open and accepting yet, but continued association with many persons of faith at Asbury, and with my Harvest friends in particular, has helped to peel away the armor that I had put around my
Denice Brice harvest discipleship community 17
heart in an attempt to control the circumstances of my life.” “I have learned more about the faith and the Bible in the short time I have been in Harvest than in all the previous years combined. But,” she added, “Those past years were not wasted. Seeds were planted that made my heart question and accept answers.” Denice is a servant and enjoys participating in the various projects the class sponsors. She’s also one of the friendly faces who you see ushering during the 9:15 service. Many class members have benefited from the homemade soup that she delivers just at the time someone really needs it. Talk about service with a smile! One of the ways Denice is growing is in her prayer life. She recently began a list of answered prayers and was amazed at the length of the list. Involvement in Harvest has allowed her to witness first-hand the results of those prayers. In recent weeks she had the blessing of meeting Christian Shearer, a young boy she’s been praying for, who is fighting an aggressive form of cancer. She got to participate in a baby shower for a class member’s grandchild and see the love and pride on the faces of the parents and grandparents, in spite of the fact they were going through a difficult time. These answered prayers help build her faith. “When I hear stories of others in the class and realize they, too, have stood in the midst of life crises, have asked for help, and have received it, the literal person inside of me cannot deny the proof that God is at work at all times.” -Jan Weinheimer Harvest meets at 11:00 in Rm 2201
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chancel choir discipleship community
t’s the first Sunday school class I have been a part of since childhood!” laughed Mary Flanagan as she recalled devising a plan to create a new Sunday school class for the Chancel Choir members. Mary felt a need in her spiritual life for a time of Bible study and thought it could work for other choir members who, because of service preparation time constraints, found it difficult to belong to a community. That was ten years ago. The class began with Phil Wright as the teacher. “From the very beginning we had a small but loyal group of class members. We have grown considerably since then,” exclaimed Mary. Phil moved to Houston last spring leaving the teacher position open. Hart Morris, Asbury’s Minister of Music, is the current teacher. “Our Chancel Choir has always been made up of awesome, loving, caring Christians and has been my personal small group within our large congregation,” said Mary. “The joining of hearts and voices in praise to our Lord is an incredibly
strong bonding experience for each of us. Most of the anthems we sing are a Bible study in themselves. I wouldn’t trade it for anything. But the Chancel Choir Community has filled a different area of spiritual need for me. Our class is an extension of that bond. It provides new facets of spiritual experience— study and discussion of the Word and the Christian life. It is also a time and place to share our joys and burdens in an atmosphere of safety, love, care and support,” she continued. Since founding the Chancel Choir Community Mary’s walk with God has exhibited a new measure of depth as a result of regular attendance there. That weekly study of God’s Word only whetted her appetite for more. Two years ago she joined the Music Ministry Ladies’ Bible study. But Mary doesn’t just go to Bible studies. She lives her faith. She takes seriously the second chapter of James, “Faith that doesn’t show itself by good deeds is no faith at all…but I will show you my faith through my good deeds.” Mary gives her whole heart to the commit-
ments she makes. She is the kind of person who helps in any way she can and is always meeting a need. It was during Asbury’s Forty Days of Purpose spiritual emphasis in the fall of 2004, that she began asking God to show her how He could use her in a new way. Mary felt Him calling her to become a Stephen Minister. On the In His Steps commitment Sunday that fall, she signed up to serve as a Stephen Minister. Mary completed her five month (50 hour) training last year and is now an active care-giver. It is evident when talking with her that she is overflowing with the love of God. Mary’s cheerful spirit, ready smile and caring nature are compelling. She is a wonderful example of what God intends each of His followers to be—an obedient, happy child who loves to commune with her brothers and sisters in the presence of her Father. -Marti Morris Chancel Choir Class meets at 9:15 in Rm 2706 (the Choir Room)
ASBURY TIDINGS 20
Rob & Linda Marshall family fellowship discipleship community
ob and Linda Marshall walked into the Family Fellowship Community for the first time on a Sunday morning in the summer of 2005 and were greeted with a conversation about water wells. It was the first inkling they had that this might be their kind of place. “Mark Dalton was getting ready to go to Tanzania to help dig water wells. It was a subject that immediately caught my attention,” says Rob. It was a perfect introduction to the community for the Marshalls, who both have a heart for missions. Before that first day in Family Fellowship, Rob and Linda were selfproclaimed “pew people”—attending worship service at Asbury but not engaging with people or building relationships. They had both grown up in the same denomination and had been nurtured and shaped by it. The decision to leave it was not undertaken lightly. They prayed about it, talked to people and searched the scriptures and the writings of John Wesley. They were serious about learning the differences between their former
denomination and the Methodist church because they wanted to find a church where they could invest themselves fully. Part of that determination meant that they would need to find a small group within the church. To understand what Rob and Linda were looking for in a community involves understanding a little background about the couple. They came from a denomination that held their hearts, but had also wounded them. Over the years, they realized that they needed to find a place where diversity is welcomed – where people can be free to be who they are. And they wanted to find a place where Jesus Christ is the central and absolute focus. “In Family Fellowship, we sit with people who have grown up in different settings, have lived in different countries, have experienced different backgrounds as far as religion,” says Rob. “And it brings a rich perspective. We are enriched by that diversity.” “And because of that diversity, it feels like a small church,” Linda adds. “We are enriched by people who are
from other places – who have other experiences and perspectives.” They are amazed that people who had been a part of Family Fellowship for many years were so willing to welcome them without reservation. “They enlarged the circle for us,” says Linda. “Getting past our denominational constraints was made easier by the people in this community.” Rob and Linda were not content to just sit and soak up what the community has to offer. Instead, they got busy. They have involved themselves in serving through the many mission opportunities that Family Fellowship takes part in. “It’s really not about what the community can do for us, but what we get to do for God through the community,” says Rob. The couple is quick to add that there is no perfect community, just as there is no perfect church…and no perfect people. “In Family Fellowship, we see non-judgmental attitudes and a willingness to accept people where they are.” Linda sees a parallel to this kindness in the way we are accepted by Christ. “His mercy is always there for us,” she says. On December 17, 2006, Rob and Linda joined Asbury. Surrounding them were many members of the Family Fellowship community—the community they call home. -Lisa Tresch Family Fellowship meets at 9:15 in Room 1504
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Sue Day christians in action discipleship community
riving to a job that she hated, crying all the way and asking God when and how it was all going to make sense, Sue Day searched and searched. She was searching during the 90’s, after a difficult marriage ended in divorce. She continued searching clear through to 1999, and was shattered then, when her brother committed suicide. She began looking for a church other than where she and her husband had been members for so long. She’d been a member of another denomination since she first became a Christian at age eight. She knew about other denominations including the Methodists, and when a friend invited her to Asbury, she decided to take a chance, visiting a singles group that first Sunday: CIA (Christians In Action). “They worshiped with wonderful praise music,” she said. “Music had always been a key part of services at the other churh and I really liked the way the CIA group sang. And I received a warm, warm welcome!” Describing herself as being in a “zombie” state because of her brother’s death, she recognized immediately
this may be where the Lord had led her. But she was cautious, and began to attend Sunday worship services where she found Pastor Tom Harrison’s voice vaguely familiar. “Where have I heard that voice?” she asked herself again and again, then, after four months, suddenly recognized it was on the radio as she had driven to work. “It was those short bits of inspiration and encouragement that got me through,” she said. “I had no idea when I visited Asbury, that the pastor is the one who was the light—the voice—at the end of the tunnel!” Sue decided the next logical step was to attend the Exploration class. “They told you all about Asbury and then asked if you had questions. My question was about baptism—Methodists sprinkle while my former denomination immersed. I believed that the Bible shows immersion as the only way they baptized. The pastor said that immersion is Biblical and that in the new church there would be a baptistery.” That settled it for Sue, and she joined the church and has been a faithful member ever since and an enthusiastic participant in the CIA community. “I have found friends there
and I love the mission work that we do,” she said. She has worked with the CIA members at Cookson Hills, the Boys’ Home, Prison Fellowship and other needs as they have been brought to the community’s attention. She also prays and since joining Asbury, she learned a new way to pray: “I don’t pray as much for me and mine anymore,” she explained. “I’m on my knees every day for other people— other situations. I have two pages of answered prayer that God has done in the last four years!” She says she prays on her knees, then unceasingly as she goes about the day. She credits Asbury’s Acts 29 prayer ministry for teaching her how to intercede. “Oh, I have prayed all my life, but not on the regular, committed basis as Acts 29 has taught me.” Sue likes a big church. “A large church offers more opportunities to serve the Lord,” she said. And she loves the community aspect. “That’s where my friends are. We work together, cry, praise, and enjoy social life together.” Sue found what she was looking for; her search is over. -Donna Wilson CIA Meets at 11:00 in RM 2319
ASBURY TIDINGS 22
Larry & Judy Lairmore joy discipleship community
he Five and Diner. Abe’s. Steak-N-Shake. These are a few of Larry Lairmore’s favorite places to eat. They are also just a handful of sites that the Lairmores have gathered to eat with their friends from the Joy Community. Every Tuesday night about 25 members of Joy dine together at a local restaurant. Judy Lairmore calls ahead to the restaurant to let them know to expect a large group--and the class always leaves a good tip on the way out. They consider it a way to make a witness for Christ and to have fun. “One time the whole class turned out to eat at Ike’s Chili and it was snowing that night! This is a rockin’ group of old people,” says Judy. But the Joy Community is about much more than social events. Judy says that their class is “not a community, it’s a family. It’s a praying family.” Members of the Joy family are tightly knit. They call each other during the week just to check in. They know the ins and outs of each others’ schedules
and struggles. If a member is absent from the gathering on Sunday, they can expect a visit or phone call from a Joy member to find out what’s happening. Larry and Judy were first drawn to Asbury’s loving embrace in the late 1960s, when their boys, David and Terry, were small. The family joined Asbury church when Dr. Bill Mason was the senior pastor, just a couple of years into the life of our church. Then life in the oil patch took the Lairmores away from Tulsa. The next era of their family life was marked by a series of moves. Judy reckons that they changed locations about every 18 months. Life has taught the Lairmores many lessons, one of which is the necessity of staying connected to Jesus. Judy summarized it this way: “You just have to live a little bit to understand your need for Jesus.” Judy maintains her close walk with the Lord through constant prayer and sharing her faith with others. Judy says there is “a lot less worry in my life, a whole lot less stress, the more I pray.”
Eventually, the Lairmores landed in Tulsa and they found their way back to Asbury as well. “I’m a pray-er. That’s why I go to church here, because, this church prays.” When they discovered that their former pastor, Bill Mason, was teaching in the Joy class, they “came home to Asbury,” as Judy put it. “We really like Bill Mason,” Judy beams. “I’d like the grace and love that Bill shows to everyone to rub off on me!” Since that time, Larry and Judy have taken pains to connect with others in Asbury through Joy and service in the church. Judy uses her gift of mercy in Stephen Ministry. She has also made herself at home in the Asbury Singing Ambassadors. Of course, Larry is the one who usually picks the restaurant for the Joy family’s weekly meal together. They have even found a silver lining in the dubious virtue of sitting in the same seat in the sanctuary each Sunday. Judy laughs, “Methodists are funny. They want their own seat on Sunday morning. So, Larry and I have started noticing who usually sits around us. We’ve begun asking after them when they miss a Sunday. We say, ‘You’ve missed a couple of Sundays. Is everything okay?’ The Lairmores truly find themselves reaching out wherever they are, connecting to others for the sake of Christ, and inviting others to be part of His family. -Lea Spencer
Joy meets at 8:00 in Rm 1508 23 ASBURY TIDINGS
Ruth DeLap tapestry discipleship community
ike a tapestry with a variety of colored threads woven together, Tapestry Discipleship Community is equally varied with members ranging in age, gender and marital status. The diverse membership was one of the things that appealed to Ruth DeLap when she was shopping for a class to attend. “I like the diversity,” she said. Ruth came to Asbury during a difficult time in her life. She was facing the breakup of her 39-year marriage. About the same time her daughter, Angela, was searching for a church in the area. They visited several, but they just didn’t seem to fit. “Angela had heard Tom on Perceptions and decided we should try Asbury. I loved Tom’s preaching and teaching. He always seemed able to bring the point home and he is so down to earth. For weeks I just sat there with tears running down my cheeks. It was a hard time for me,” Ruth explained. Then a friend told Ruth about a Sunday school class for students with special needs taught by Linda Petty.
Her younger daughter, Diana, tried Friends in Christ and immediately loved it. That cinched it for Ruth, Asbury was where they belonged. At first Friends in Christ met at 9:15 a.m., but later they changed the time to 11:00 a.m. in order to attend the 9:15 worship service. Diana was concerned for Ruth. “What will you do at 11:00 a.m. while I’m in class?” she asked. Ruth explained that she’d just find a class to attend during that hour. She began the search, but when she attended Tapestry she again knew she was home. “I felt really welcomed from the beginning. I was warmly greeted and received a note the next week inviting me back. I’ve been there ever since. Not only do I like the diversity, but I also enjoy Bill Johnson’s teaching. One time when I had a serious illness the class prayed for me by laying on of hands and I could truly feel the power of those prayers,” said Ruth. Ruth’s Christian foundation was built when she was about 12 years old. Living in a small town in Michigan, she began attending Sunday school and
Vacation Bible School with her oldest sister, Goldie. Her sister was very influential in her life and it was during this time that she made a decision to follow Christ and was baptized. She has been part of several denominations since that time— baptized in one, married in another, attended another upon coming to Tulsa when her former husband attended Spartan, but now she’s enjoying the rich teaching at Asbury. Here she has benefited from worship services, Divorce Recovery where Jim Small and Nancy Graves helped her find comfort and direction following the breakup of her marriage and of course, Tapestry Discipleship Community. Ruth explained, “Tapestry has helped me through the whole process. People really do care even if they don’t know you well. They have all helped me establish a firm connection to God and they have held my hand through it all—divorce and illness.” -Sandy Wagner Tapestry meets at 11:00 in RM 1900 ASBURY TIDINGS 24
Community Made a Difference by john westervelt
he year was 1970.Bill Mason was senior pastor of Asbury UMC. Nancy Baxter was Youth Director. Ninth graders, Paul Westervelt and Sandy Parks had just arrived at Asbury and soon were active in MYF (Methodist Youth Fellowship). Bill and Nancy instilled in these young minds a love for Jesus and a love for scripture. The seed was planted, and only God knew what might grow. Entering Oklahoma State University together, Paul and Sandy found time for Bible study in addition to their academic studies. They were married at Asbury after completing their junior year of college and moved to Tulsa where Sandy would intern for a year as a Medical Technologist at Saint John’s. They graduated the next spring. Several years later as young adults, they began teaching Precept Bible studies at Asbury and led the missions commission there. In 1997, PennWell Publishing asked Paul to leave his job in Tulsa as Director of Circulation to move to
25 ASBURY TIDINGS
Houston to head up a new company— PennEnergy. The family was soon active in their neighborhood church in Katy, Texas. Not long after the beginning of the new century, Paul began taking evening and Saturday classes in Houston offered by Dallas Theological Seminary. He planned to get a seminary degree by the time his children finished college, so he could seek church-related work to finish out his career. In the meantime, Sandy was extremely active in the women’s ministry at their church, as she coordinated the women’s ministry activities and Bible study programs. Paul and Sandy’s son Brett graduated in electrical engineering from the University of Texas and is serving his second year with Campus Crusade for Christ in Austin. Their daughter Amy is a junior at Texas A&M and spends her summers as a counselor at Kamp Kanakuk. Paul’s call to Christian service came two years early. In November he resigned from his job as Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of
PennEnergy. On December 5, 2005, Paul began work in Colorado Springs for NavPress (www.navpress.com), the publishing arm of the Navigators. In his new role he is the Publisher for “Discipleship Journal” and “Pray” magazines and a related line of books. (Navigators is a Christian organization with representatives on college campuses all around the world. NavPress, a ministry of the Navigators, publishes books, Bible studies, periodicals and The Message Bible to enrich the spiritual walks of some four million people annually.) God prepared Paul for his new job by teaching him management skills in the corporate world and by a lifetime of Bible study. Bill Mason and Asbury were key influencers in Paul and Sandy’s marriage and Christian development. This early direction has now made it possible for Paul to participate in a ministry that supports churches and ministries around the world. Just one more example of the global reach of this local community we call Asbury United Methodist Church.
asbury opportunities general information Breakfast Served from 7:00-9:15 a.m. in the CLC Come enjoy fellowship with Asburians along with fresh donut s, bagels, biscuits & gravy, sausage, eggs, fruit, and cereal. $2 for adults & $1 for children 12 & under Sunday Morning Worship 8:00 am Mason Chapel (Traditional Communion) 9:15 am Sanctuary (Contemporary Communion) 11:00 am Sanctuary (Traditional) Sign interpreter provided 11:00 am Mason Chapel (Contemporary) Children and Students 6 Weeks - 4 Years 8:00, 9:15, and 11:00 am K-6th Grades 9:15 or 11:00 am 7th, 8th & 9th Grades 9:15 & 11:00 am 10th, 11th & 12th Grades 9:15 am only Adult Discipleship Communities 8:00, 9:15, and 11:00 am and Wednesdays, 6:30 pm The Gazebo is Open ...each Sunday morning between services and Wednesday evenings from 5:30 - 7:00 pm. Perceptions and Prayer Journals on sale, as well as selections in Pastor Tom’s Book Club, including: Seasons of Life by former AllAmerican and NFL All-Pro, Joe Ehrman and The Life God Blesses by Gordon MacDonald. New book selections include Don’t Sing Songs to a Heavy Heart by Kenneth Haugk, for anyone who has ever wanted to help others who are suffering and The Screwtape Letter by C.S. Lewis, a classic that every Christian should read. AsburyWear is also for sale. Aluminum Can Recycling Hey church family! Keep collecting those aluminum cans and bringing them to the church when you come! Once a month our resident “can man,” Jim Schultz, picks them up from the east side storage area and takes them to the recyling center for us. Gently toss your wellbagged cans into the fenced area, and be a part of ministry to the children in our church and the community. On behalf of our children and the environment, thank you! Asbury Family News is available at the Welcome Centers. It includes hospital lists, births, deaths, marriages, baptisms and military listings. Doors of Asbury posters are at the Welcome Centers...our gift to you. Suitable for framing. Recycling Bin Locations - Recycle unwanted paper products. Two bins available, located in the south and east parking lots.
access Hands of Love Sign Choir Sundays, 6:00-7:00 pm, Rm 2821
biblical literacy Asbury University Classes are available for all levels of learning. Brochures are available at the Welcome Centers and on the website: www.asburytulsa.org
care and support
American Red Cross Blood Drive Sunday, February 19 from 8:00 am - 1:00 pm in the CLC. Call 831-1151 to schedule your appointment, or sign up online at www.givelife.org and enter sponsor code “asburymethodist.” The worship service is broadcast into the CLC for your viewing. Search for Significance Tuesdays, February 7 thru April 4 (no class March 21) from 6:30-8:00 pm in Rm 1621. Cost: $13. Facilitators: Lois Trost and Diane Taylor. Where are you in your personal search for significance in life? What makes you feel good about yourself? Build your self-esteem on your ability to please others, or build it on the unconditional love of Jesus Christ - the choice is yours! Call 392-1191 to register. Our Journey of Hope Saturday mornings, February 18 and 25 from 8:30 am - 12:30 pm in Rm 2820. Look around you. Do you know any family who hasn’t been touched by cancer? The Pastoral Care Department of Cancer Treatment Centers of America will be providing training through “Our Journey of Hope” program in two 4-hour sessions. Continental breakfast provided. Must register by February 10 by calling Lyn Thomson at 286-5235. Our Journey of Hope Seminar Monday, March 6 from 7:00-8:30 pm in the Parlor. The Pastoral Care Department of Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA) through its “Our Journey of Hope” program will present this seminar. Cancer Support Group Second Sunday of each month, 4:00-6:00 pm, Parlor - For those living with cancer and their family and friends Bipolar/Depression Support Group Second and fourth Tuesdays, 7:00-8:30 pm, Rm 1508 - For persons living with bipolar disorder or depression Divorce Recovery Tuesdays, 7:00-8:30 pm, Rm 2319 - For those suffering from the early, highly emotional stages of divorce and separation trauma. Divorce Rebuilding Thursdays, 7:00-8:30 pm, Rm 2319 - For those ready to rebuild their lives after separation or divorce. Grandparents Raising Grandchildren
First and third Tuesdays, 6:30-8:30 pm, Rm 1508. Family to Family Usually meets the fourth Tuesday of the month, 1:30-3:30 pm, Parlor. For family members or caregivers of people affected by a mental illness. Joint informational dinner meeting with Mental Health Support Group, third Wednesday of each month, 5:30 pm at the Rib Crib, 81st and Yale. Asbury Bear Bags Asbury Bears are not just for little kids anymore! Asbury Bear Bags with coloring books have comforted young children for many years, but now you may give a Bear Bag with a scripture-based journal included instead! Great for teens and adults. Anyone may deliver an Asbury Bear to someone who is grieving. For more information, contact Beth at 392-1116.
children Registration forms for all children’s activities are available in the preschool and elementary lobbies. Core Hours for Childcare Parents who are involved in activities or classes during these hours will have childcare provided with no reservations needed: Sundays 7:45 am - 12:15 pm Mondays 9:00 am - 12:00 pm Tuesdays 9:00 am - 12:00 pm Tuesdays 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm Wednesdays 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm Thursdays 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm KRS Pajama Party Sunday, February 19 from 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm Cost: $10. Put on your PJ’s, grab that teddy bear, and come on down to Asbury for a funfilled evening designed just for our 1st and 2nd graders! There’s no school the next day (President’s Day) and our Willie Wonka PJ Party will be so “sweet” with movies, games, food, and fun! The paid registration deadline is Sunday, February 12. Don’t wait...register today! Parents are needed to help with this event. Call Kathy at 392-1165 if you can help. H2O Scavenger Hunt Saturday, April 1 from 1:00-5:00 pm. Cost: $10. You and some of your H2O friends are a team! You get a bag, a Polaroid camera and a little spending money. You also get a van (driver included) and a list of weird and wacky people, places and things to find inside the church and outside in the world. If you and your friends are up for Polaroids, prizes and pretty crazy places, then come see if you can win the great H2O Scavenger Hunt!! The paid registration deadline is Sunday, March 26. Parents are needed to help with this event. Call Jennifer at 392-1170 if you can help. Children’s Ministry Enrichment Training Tuesday, March 28 from 7:00-8:30 pm. “Setting CALENDAR
Your Kids Up for Success,” is the second in a series of four enrichment courses offered in 2006 by our children’s ministry for volunteers, parents and grandparents. The goal is to assist anyone with a heart for kids in gaining a better understanding and knowledge in areas that benefit working (and playing!) with His children. We hope to see you all for a little fun, and a lot of learning! Childcare for children 6 weeks through 6th grade. Call Kim at 392-1159 or Heidi at 392-1168 for more information. Wednesday Night Live Wednesdays through April 26 from 7:00 - 8:00 pm. For 4 year olds through 4th graders. Our action-packed evening will start with highenergy games in the main building, followed by worship in the Chapel - kid style. This overall program is designed to help children build character and develop qualities that will help them live productive and fulfilled lives as followers of Jesus Christ. Dismissal is at 8:00 pm from the Chapel. We can’t wait to see your kiddos (and parents if you like) in worship with us soon! Children’s Choirs Wednesdays through April 26 from 6:00 - 6:50 pm. Children’s choirs are for children ages three through sixth grade. Different choirs will be singing in all our Sunday morning services during the spring. Registration forms for NEW choir members are available in each choir room. Returning choir members do not need to re-register. We are so excited to be working with your children again! Spread the word! Children’s Choir is not just singin’. We play musical games, instruments and have lots of fun! Call Marti at 392-1147 for more information. Rock U Wednesdays through March 15 from 7:00-8:00 pm. Cost: $8 for study book, “Boy, Have I got a Problem!” All kids are attracted to fun and games, and attracting kids is what we want to do! However, our ultimate objective is obviously far beyond just having a good time together. We desire to use God’s word and the conviction of the Holy Spirit to impact fifth and sixth grade kids’ hearts, and to change lives forever. Our Wednesday night program moves this process beyond the “teaching and discussion” model of early elementary to a more serious small group interactive Bible study program requiring personal responsibility and accountability. It’s good stuff, folks! Don’t let your fifth or sixth grader miss out! Dismissal from the Chapel. Preschool/Mother’s Day Out Registration Monday, January 30 thru Friday, February 3 beginning at 8:00 am in the PS/MDO Office. Registration open to Asbury members or regular attendees, for children who turn 8 months old by September 1, 2006 through children in kindergarten. Call Joanne at 392-1128 or Susan at 392-1126 for more information. 27
Preparing for Adolescence Workshop Wednesdays, March 29 - April 26 from 6:45-8:00 pm in Rm 2901. Cost: $8. This is a 5-week course designed especially for our fifth graders. We will discuss the topics of inferiority, conformity, puberty, romantic love, and identity from a biblical perspective. Our reference book is Preparing for Adolescence by Dr. James Dobson. Parental permission is required. Call 392-1166 for more information Rock 5.6 All-Nighter Friday and Saturday, March 10 and 11 from 9:00 pm - 6:00 am. Cost: $40. Do you want to get out and get crazy all night long? We have food...we have games...we have fun, fun, fun! Come check out one of Tulsa’s coolest entertainment places, the Incredible Pizza Company, open all night long just for you! You’ll want to invite all your friends. The fee covers a late dinner, breakfast, awesome t-shirt, and all activity expenses. The paid registration deadline is Monday, February 28. Parents are needed to help with this event and volunteer “shifts” are available. Call 392-1166 for more information. Rock 5.6 Road Trip Saturday, April 29 from 6:00 am - Midnight. Cost: $60. Hey 5th and 6th graders! Come with us as we pile onto a charter bus and head for Six Flags Over Texas in Arlington! The cost includes transportation, gate admission, and the official Road Trip t-shirt. Kids will need to bring additional money for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and for souvenirs, etc. The paid registration deadline is Monday, April 17 or until the trip is full. Don’t wait...register today! Parents are needed to help with this event. Call 392-1166 for more information.
christian living Equip Your Teens...No Matter What! Financial Peace Junior Series - Dave Ramsey Call Nancy Staab at 392-1124 or email email@example.com if you are interested.
discipleship Spiritual Gift Connections Sessions are held the second Thursday of each month in Room 2821 from 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm. Focus on volunteer opportunities at Asbury that use your Spiritual Gifts and personality traits. You are requested to complete the Spiritual Gifts Inventory prior to attending this class. Call the registration hotline at 392-1191 to register for one of the Thursday sessions.
library New Additions The Asbury Library is a wonderful resource.
New additions are listed in a black notebook on the Librarian’s desk. Thank you to all who continue to contribute books to our Library.
marriage & family Milestone Wedding Anniversaries Email your April or May Milestone Anniversary (5, 10, 15, 20, etc.) to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 392-1146. 8 Dates Live! Second Tuesday of each month, February 14 September 12 from 6:15-7:00 pm in Rm 2818. Dating is a great way to keep your marriage alive! Whether you’ve been married one year or forty, come hear a speaker, then have a fun monthly dinner date alone, while you discuss the subject more. Topics include: Communication, Romance and Commitment, Money, Sex, His Needs/Her Needs, Marriage, Parenting, Love and Respect, Roles of Husband and Wives, and 5 Love Languages. Speakers will be Rev. Mark and Robin McAdow, Rick Boothe, Rod and Charlene Giles and other well-known Asbury leaders. Childcare is available. Blended Families - How to Succeed It’s not too late to sign up. Tuesdays through April 11 from 6:30 - 8:00 pm in Rm. 1504. Cost: $20. Call 392-1191 to register. Come learn how to build a successful, Christ-centered stepfamily. Whether you are already a stepfamily or you are considering marriage, this class is for you. Want to Build a Better Marriage? Thursdays, February 16 - March 23, from 6:30 - 8:30 pm in the CLC. Offered to the entire Tulsa community by Asbury and the OK Marriage Initiative. Falling in love is easy! Staying in love is easy, too, if you learn “love skills” to stop the four corrosive behaviors that ruin relationships. Open to single people and couples who are dating, engaged or married. These six weeks are not about “sharing” or invading your privacy...no Kumbaya! Just 12 hours of cutting edge, faith-friendly techniques that will help you prevent problems or solve them. C-PREP materials used. Come as you are. No cost. No childcare.
Asbury Exploration Come to one of these classes to learn more about becoming a member of Asbury. Upcoming session: Sunday, February 5, from 12:302:30 pm. Call 392-1191 to register. Childcare available.
Men’s Prayer Breakfast Wednesdays, 6:30-7:30 am in the CLC. Join the Men’s Ministry for a delicious breakfast , meaningful worship and life-
changing prayer! Cost: $3/person February 1 Pec Clark, speaker February 8 Don Herrold, speaker February 15 Mark Hoffman, speaker February 22 Bill Johnson, speaker Valentine Dinner and Dance Saturday, February 11, 6:30 pm at the Renaissance Hotel. Cost: $30 per person. Please make your reservation by calling 3921191 by February 8.
missions/outreach Global Outreach Prayer Ministry News and prayer requests from our missionaries and ministries are sent each week to our prayer ministry list. If you would like to join and become a prayer intercessor for those serving around the world, contact Missy at 392-1163. 2006 Sports Calendar Youth at Heart is a non-profit, United Way Agency that focuses on the inner-city youth of Tulsa. This year, they are selling 2006 OU and OSU Sports Nostalgic Calendars as a fund raiser. The OU calendar features Billy Sims on the cover and the OSU calendar features Barry Sanders on the cover. $15 each, with $5 going to Youth at Heart. Call 493-7311, ext. 11, if you are interested in buying one. Mentor Moms/Young Lives First and second Tuesdays of the month, 7:009:00 pm in the Parlor. This is a support group for teenage moms, sponsored by Young Life.
and Rosanna Corrales. Chancel Choir Wednesdays, 7:00-9:00 pm, Choir Room Asbury Singing Ambassadors Tuesdays, 1:00 pm, Choir Room Orchestra/Concert Band Wednesdays, 7:00-9:00 pm, Rm 1510 Celebration Ringers Tuesdays, 4:30-5:30 pm, Rm 2506 Asbury Ringers Wednesdays, 6:00-7:00 pm, Rm 2506 Perpetual Light Thursdays, 10:00 am - noon, Rm 2506 Carillon Quartet Wednesdays, 5:00-6:00 pm, Rm 2506 New Covenant Ringers Wednesdays, 4:45-5:30 pm, Rm 2504 Wesley Ringers Sundays, 4:30-5:30 pm, Rm 2506 Asbury Power & Light Sundays, 8:15-9:15 am, Rm 1510 Brass Quintet Tuesdays, 7:30-9:00 pm, Rm 1510 String Ensemble Wednesdays, 6:00-7:00 pm, Rm 1510 Wednesdays, 8:00-9:00 pm, Rm 1506 Clarinet Choir Wednesdays, 6:00-7:00 pm, Rm 1506 Dixieland Band Thursdays, 2:00-3:00 pm, Rm 1510
. The first three Volunteer-in-Mission teams for 2006 are: Monterrey, Mexico February 18-25, Construction and Mission Bible School - approx. $900 Mobile, Alabama February 22-26, Hurricane Relief Efforts approx. $500 Costa Rica March 4-11, Light Construction and Mission Bible School - approx. $1000 Additional destinations for 2006 are Cookson Hills (OK), Mobile (AL), Estonia, Tanzania, Azerbaijan, Costa Rica, Rio Bravo and Monterrey, Mexico For further details about Volunteer-inMission opportunities, contact Marilene Long, 392-1164 or email@example.com
Women Praying Together Mondays, 11:30 am - 12:30 pm, Prayer Room. Join other women as they pray together. College Moms in Touch Prayer Time Wednesdays, 11:45 am - 12:45 pm, Rm 1506 Altar Prayer If you would like someone to pray with you after the worship service on Sunday, please go to the front of the Sanctuary and people will be there to pray for healing of your body, mind and/or spirit. They are available to pray with you at the altar or in the Prayer Room. Mason Chapel Prayer Room Accessible during core hours. You can enter the room from the outside entrance of the southeast side of the Chapel. Prayer Journals Available in Gazebo Asbury Prayer Journals now available in the Gazebo. This valuable tool is filled with scripture and resources designed to enhance your personal prayer time, plus a section for keeping sermon notes.
Asbury Brass/Organ Concert Sunday, February 19 at 6:00 pm in the Sanctuary. Experience the rich sounds of Asbury’s own musicians! Enjoy an evening of music presented by the Asbury Brass Quintet
Celebrate Recovery Mondays: Dinner at 6:00 pm Worship: 7:00-8:00 pm Small Groups: 8:00-9:00 pm Dessert: 9:00-9:30 pm
Hiding any hurts, habits or hangups? God never intended for you to live in bondage. Come join this supportive group of people each Monday night at 6:00 pm. Childcare available. Celebrate Recovery Childcare Volunteers needed. Time commitment is one Monday evening per month from 6:45 pm to 9:10 pm. Please call 392-1103 if you can help.
recreation Asbury Recreation Center - Hours Mondays 8:30 am - 9:30 am Tuesdays 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm Wednesdays 8:30 am - 9:30 am 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm Fridays 8:30 am - 9:30 am Sundays 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm Single Adults Volleyball Singles Volleyball has moved to Wednesdays through February, 7:00 pm in Rm 2319. Adult Volleyball Sundays, 7:00-9:00 pm, Gym Come join a time of exercise, fun and fellowship Junior High Basketball Thursdays, 6:00-7:00 pm, Gym Metro Area Basketball League. Senior High Basketball Thursdays, 7:00-9:00 pm, Gym Metro Area Basketball League. Senior Sit and Fit Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays 9:00-9:30 am, Gym. Come join a time of stretching with fun and fellowship. Walk in the Gym with Him Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 8:30-9:00 am in the gym. Come join a time of power walking with fun and fellowship. Upward Basketball Practice Mondays from 5:00-9:00 pm Tuesdays from 5:00-8:00 pm Thursdays from 5:00-6:00 pm Lifestyle Weight Change with Christ Wednesdays from 7:00-8:00 pm. This class and Bible study is for men and women interested in setting goals and learning to use exercise and God’s Word to build a healthier way of living. Contact Crista Grimes at firstname.lastname@example.org Asbury Family Picnic/Campout Friday and Saturday, April 21 and 22, Bluff Landing Campground in Broken Arrow. The fun begins at 3:00 p.m. on Friday. Cost: $7 per campsite. Make plans now to be a part of one of the coolest, most awesome outdoor experiences this side of the Rockies! You can arrive at any time, stay as long as you like, and leave when you’re ready. The event will be held at Bluff Landing, just 15 miles east of the church. You provide your own camping equipment and food, and we’ll provide opportunities for canoeing, fishing, hayrides, games...you name it! If it’s fun, we’ll be doing it. CALENDAR
No reservations are required. The event is sponsored by our Children’s and Recreation Ministries, and hosted by Venture Crew 909, Cub Pack 10, and Troop 10. Great fellowshiop, great friends, and great memories await you! Contact Bob Walters at BLWALT6884@cox.net.
seniors Asbury Singing Ambassadors This senior adult choir rehearses Tuesdays at 1:00 pm in the Choir Room. ‘Tweenagers Thursday, February 23 at 10:30 am in the CLC. The program will be presented by the Senior Citizens Center. If you are between retirement and heaven, come and bring a friend! Call Doni at 492-1771 to make your reservations by noon Monday, February 20.
singles Singles Luncheon Sunday, February 26 from noon - 1:30 pm in the Asbury Parlor. Singles Meet and Greet Sundays from 8:40-9:10 am or 10:20-10:50 am in the CLC. All singles are invited. Singles Valentine Dance February 11 from 6:30-8:30 pm in the CLC. ASM Singles Luncheon Sunday, February 26 from noon - 2 pm in CLC Redemption House Dinner February 26 from 6:30-9:00 pm at St. Luke’s Singles Bible Study Mondays, 7:00-9:00 pm, Rm 2820 Divorce Recovery Tuesdays, 7:00-8:30 pm, Rm 2319 - For those suffering from the early, highly emotional stages of divorce and separation trauma. Divorce Rebuilding Thursdays, 7:00-8:30 pm, Rm 2319 - For those ready to rebuild their lives after separation or divorce.
10th, 11th & 12th Breakaway Wednesdays, 6:30-9:00 pm - Breakaway Area Join us every Wednesday (except holidays) for a time of connection, worship, and God, and some nights of just random fun. Don’t miss the food and hang-out time afterwards. 7th, 8th, & 9th Grade Bible Study Every Wednesday night except the first one of the month, January 11 thru April 26 from 6:308:00 pm. Come to the Student Cafe, hang out, have fun, and study what God’s Word has for us. Marsha will lead the 7th and 8th grade study, and Mark will lead 9th. It’s going to be awe-inspiring. You won’t want to miss it! Sunday Night Small Groups 7th, 8th from 5:30-7:00 pm at Asbury 29 CALENDAR
9th, 10th, 11th, and 12th from 6:00-7:30 pm in homes. Don’t miss out on being a part of a small group! It’s a place to grow in your relationship with Jesus, have some accountability, and just have fun! Sign up in Student Ministries area. (No small groups on February 5 because of Superbowl parties, and no small groups February 5 because of Spring Break Missions Training) Metro Worship Wednesday, February 1 from 7:00-8:30 pm. for 7th-12th graders. Come join youth from all over the city in a night to just worship Jesus. We meet the first Wednesday night of every month from 7:00-8:30 pm at Believers. If you need a ride, meet at Asbury at 6:30 pm. We’ll be back by 9:00 pm. 10th - 12th Superbowl Party Sunday, February 5...Kickoff until the game is over! Whether you like football or not, this is a great time to just come hang out and have fun. We will have tons of food and lots of door prizes. Bring $3 to help pay for dinner. Watch for details! Call Todd with any questions at 392-1154. 7th - 9th Superbowl Party Sunday, February 5...Kickoff until the game is over! It’s a party! Come and watch the game on the BIG screen in the BIG room! There will be lots of pizza, food, pop, pool, ping pong, video games, foosball and a whole lot of fun! Bring $5 for dinner. Be sure to come! 7th Grade Confimation Parent Meeting Sunday, February 19 from 5:30-7:00 pm in the CLC. If your student is participating in 7th grade confirmation, don’t miss this mandatory meeting! Stock Campaign 2006 It’s time to get ready for student missions 2006! We are heading out to some amazing places over spring break and then will be working hard in our own backyard with Tulsa missions over the summer! Without the generous support of the stockholders, this wouldn’t be possible. In 2005, the stockholders invested over $85,000 in student missions. It’s time to invest again! Our goal for 2006 is to raise $90,000. Spring Break Mission Trip Payment Due Sunday, February 19. Be sure and get your final payment in! Houston: $100; Redbird: $100; Mexico: $150; Guatemala: $300. Spring Break Missions Training February 25 and 26. If you are going on Spring Break Missions, you must attend these MANDATORY trainings! Mexico Training - February 25 from 9 am - 8 pm ($5.00 for meals) and February 26 from 9 am - 8 pm ($5 for meals) Guatemala Training February 25 from 2:00-9:00 pm ($3.00 for dinner) and February 26 from 12:30 - 2:00 pm ($3 for lunch) 7th and 8th Grade Spring Break Missions Team Training - February 26 from 2:00-6:30 pm
College Bible Study Each Sunday night from 6:00-7:15 pm in the Student Ministry Conference Room. Come learn about God with other college students. College Sunday Night Dinners 7:15-9:00 pm in the Student Ministry Cafe. Come eat a great homecooked meal with other college students.
women Wednesday AM Bible Study Wednesdays, 10:00 am, Rm 1502 Mothers’ Fellowship Mondays throughout the school year from 9:30 - 11:30 am in the Parlor. To register, call 3921191. Women’s Monthly Luncheon Thursday, February 2 from 11:30 am - 1:00 pm, CLC. Program: Women’s Health with Dr. Richard Reinking, “What a Christian Should Know About Stem Cells.” Scripture: Proverbs 4:20-22. Book: Jackie Parker. All women of the church are welcome. Circle Assignments: Naomi: Setup, food for pantry (curb pickup) Esther: Cleanup, food for pantry All others: Covered Dish Women Praying Together Mondays from 11:30 am - 12:30 pm in the Prayer Room. Phone Buddies Ladies, do you want a “cheer me up” with your morning coffee? We have ladies that can fill that need by being your own “phone buddy!” Call 392-1122. Lea or Shirley will return the call and get you set up! Arts and Crafts Mondays, 9:30 am - 2:00 pm, Rm 2820. Women who enjoy crafts are invited to come any Monday morning...come and go any time. Bring lunch to share. Contact Beverly Clarke. (See page 34 for more.)
Ash Wednesday Worship Service Wednesday, March 1 at 6:30 pm in the Sanctuary. Join Pastor Tom in a service of introspection to begin the Lenten season. Online Worship Did you know that you can watch the 9:15 and 11:00 a.m. Sunday services online as they are occuring? Go to www.asburytulsa.org then click on “Watch Sermons” (by Tom’s picture). If the winter flu gets you down, or you are out of town on Sunday and you cannot attend worship, you can log on and share the experience. Or if there is a sermon that you wish someone else had been able to hear, send them to our website where several weeks of sermons are archived.
Welcome to Asb ur Asbur uryy... Dave and Louise Bryant
Dave and Donna Devore, Colt and Bridgett Banning
Mary Barron Roger and Annie Good
Karen Brandt, Anneli, Emmitt & Shea
Jerry and Kerry Hereden
Sean and Mandy Malloy, Mason & Bennett Stephanie Brown
Linda and Robert Marshall
Jess and Mary Mitchell
Norma Wood NEW MEMBERS
Randy and Donna Patterson
Angelic Ent, Bobby and Jacob
Steve and Denise Regouby
Todd and Kelly Erickson and Jessica Scott Reeves Rick and Kayla Smith
Jim Hale Russ Schafer & Christy Vidacak
Tracy and Lori Zeller, Hannah & Emily
We’r lad e’ree gglad you’re here! 31 NEW MEMBERS
Bud Lightfoot Bill and Darlene Wagner
with those who have experienced the joy of a new baby in their family:
To Everyone at Asbury United Methodist Church, Greetings from Iraq! I’d like to take the opportunity to thank you all for the care packages you sent to me and my soldiers. They were great! We are very appreciative for all the support and goodies. Typically, when one of my soldiers or I receive care packages, it’s like Christmas morning, with everyone in the shop peering over your shoulder, waiting to see what’s inside, and get first dibs on the good stuff! The care packages you sent were no different. When we have items left over, we put them in the front of our shop for everyone else to photo by Christy Capps have when they come in! I guess that’s why we always have a lot of people stopping by. I’d like to take the opportunity to tell you a little about the soldiers you sent the care packages to. First, our shop is the Logistics shop, meaning we provide logistical support (food, equipment, money, etc.) to about 10,000 soldiers. There are nine of us all working in one office. Our senior person is Lieutenant Colonel Hopson. He was an ROTC instructor of mine in college, and by chance is now my boss. He’s single, by the way! There is myself, and my friend, James both Captains. We have a Lieutenant, Bob Courture, from a National Guard unit in California, who handles all of our finances and purchase requests. Not bad for being an Infantryman! We have one Warrant Officer, Ms. Davis, who is our transportation officer. She is from Antigua! Sergeant First Class Delgado is our Transportation oncommissioned officer. He’s had 13 years of experience moving equipment all over the world. Sergeant George is in charge of issuing all of our equipment. She is from Dominica and has a baby girl back in Fort Stewart, Georgia. We have two
Lydia Vann Hoose November 18, 2005 Daughter of Lance and Vannessa Hoose and sister of Sydney Alyssa Mae and Lorelie Rose Vogler December 20, 2005 Daughters of Ryan and Michele Vogler Cole Kelly Schniers Decembr 28, 2005 Son of Angie and Brent Schniers and brother of Ryan Jackson Maurice Ridings January 6, 2006 Son of Jack an dStacy Ridings and brother of Jaci.
We remember... and pray God’s peace for those who have lost loved ones: Jim Butler Husband of Lovelle December 18, 2005 Clarence Morrison Husband of Esther Gene December 21, 2005 Art Naylor Husband of Michelle and father of John, James and Erin December 23, 2005 Frank Tandy Husband of Ellen December 24, 2005
soldiers, Specialists Parker and Hollis. Specialist Parker’s husband is currently in Iraq also, and she gets the opportunity to see him about once a month. Specialist Hollis is our youngest soldier at 20 years old, and has a husband currently serving in South Korea. We have all been working together throughout our deployment, which began in late January,\ 2005. We are now on “the countdown,” counting down the days until we return home to our families for a little while. As the days pass, we get more and more excited. We’d like to thank you all for the support you’ve given us. It is such a great feeling to know there are wonderful people out there willing to support some soldiers halfway across the world. We can’t fully show it, but please know that we truly thank you. Please keep us in your prayers during this holiday season and last few weeks of our deployment! Sincerely, Captain Michael Berriman
To the men and women of Asbury UMC, Thank you to all the folks who Volunteer their time for the Military Connection . Thank you for the care package. I will share the treats! I’m including the name of a fellow soldier to add to your list, as he doesn’t get many packages. Thank you so much for your cards and kind words of encouragement. I appreciate your support. Just as you pray for those of us overseas, I pray for you...my family members and friends. God Bless, Major Dan Hensley, USAF Bagrum, Afghanistan
FAMILY ROOM 32
Dear Asbury Family, Thank you for the many cards, calls and prayers that we received on the death of my father, Frank Fletcher. Six of the Seekers ventured out to Western Kansas for the service. Our hearts were touched. This Asbury family is a wonderful family to be a part of and we thank God for the many blessings we have received. Sig and Jan Schwier
Blessed to be a blessing...
Dear Asbury, Your kindness in a special way brings God’s blessing to us! Thank you from all the residents who received Thanksgiving baskets and Christmas baskets. They were awesome and such a blessing. Thank you also for the lovely Christmas dinner that Linda Petty brought us. We really do appreciate you and always look forward to the monthly visits from the kids. Love in Christ, Becky McCleary Murdock Villa Residents ‘...We are members one of another.’ Ephesians 4:25" Food baskets were delivered to families through Youth at Heart and Operation Hope, residents of Murdock Villa and other individuals and families at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Members of Asbury provided 150 baskets at Thanksgiving and 210 at Christmas. Through Asbury’s Operation Christmas Child, gifts were provided for 405 Youth at Heart and Operation Hope children. Gifts were also provided to children through our partner school, Walt Whitman. When combined with the gifts purchased by the Chancel Choir for children on the Woodland Hills Mall Angel Tree, approximately 700 children received Christmas gifts through the generosity of Asburians. Many thanks to all the volunteers who helped assemble and deliver food baskets and gifts, all who donated to the food baskets and gave gifts, and a special thank you to Shae Hedrick and Jamie Schaffitzel who coordinated the food baskets and Christmas Child programs this recent holiday season. Beth McCalman Regional Outreach Team Leader 33
Food baskets were delivered to 370 families during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. In addition, 700 children received Christmas gifts through the generosity of Asburians.
Couples Married 50+ Years as of February 12, 2006 Elvie & Mildred Dearing Frank & Billie Marshall Frank & Bernice Sober Dale & Lois Nowlin Herman & Nellie Kloehr Gene & Irene Bond Abe & Evelyn Brentlinger James & Doode Blazer Hart & Dot Hix Vic & Betty Goodknight Bill & Betty Manley Charles & Shirley Nelson Neil & Dolores Willits Al & Ruth Meyer Gene & Joy Bortmess Herbert & Betty Maresh M.J. & Val Pfeiffer Norman & Della Brown Bill & Shirley Parkinson Charles & Jean Hall Les & Ginger Clutter Art & Hazel Clayton Sid & Maxine Lee Bob & Gene Treadwell Bob & Marguerite Keasler John & Joanna Neely Ted & Virginia Wellendorf Lester & Betty Kelsey Barney & Kay Welch Charles & Mary Johns Charles & Jo Ann Goss Duane & Grace Lee Steve & Jo Moore Laneer & Jean Ham Gene & Dottie Livengood Paul & Marion Kerschner Edison & Audrey Jeffus Paul & Donna Wicker John & Mary Keefe Jack & Doris Bruin Rudy & Alice Jane Gorishek Murrel & Helen Cowherd Bill & Frances Rowland Charles & Donna Jackson Phil & Jean Essley
06/18/1938 08/20/1939 01/06/1940 12/21/1941 01/17/1942 08/15/1942 05/10/1943 06/19/1943 06/24/1943 06/26/1943 09/10/1943 11/20/1943 01/06/1944 01/28/1944 02/05/1944 06/29/1944 07/21/1944 10/26/1944 02/22/1945 04/11/1945 06/09/1945 06/15/1945 06/23/1945 07/07/1945 08/18/1945 01/06/1946 01/10/1946 05/03/1946 07/03/1946 08/08/1946 08/25/1946 09/01/1946 09/13/1946 09/28/1946 11/17/1946 12/28/1946 02/02/1947 04/06/1947 05/04/1947 06/07/1947 06/29/1947 08/14/1947 10/10/1947 10/24/1947 12/28/1947
6 7years 6 6years 6 6years 6 4years 6 4years 6 3years 6 2years 6 2years 6 2years 6 2years 6 2years 6 2years 6 2years 6 2years 6 2years 6 1years 6 1years 6 1years 6 0years 6 0years 6 0years 6 0years 6 0years 6 0years 6 0years 6 0years 6 0years 5 9years 5 9years 5 9years 5 9years 5 9years 5 9years 5 9years 5 9years 5 9years 5 9years 5 8years 5 8years 5 8years 5 8years 5 8years 5 8years 5 8years 5 8years
Delbert & Nell Pool Howard & Vera McCloud Tom & Elizabeth Diehl Don & Ellie Baumunk Neely & Ruthie Lowrie John & Merle Schwendimann Bill & Janene Jones Don & Ellie Todd Dick & Joan Link Frank & Bonnie Nuding Jack & Rosemary Wiles Tom & Evelyn Porter Sam & Gloria Phillips Tom & Lillie Hardcastle Joe & Mary Pottorf Gene & Betty Hobson Warren & Roberta Roberts Arthur & Margery Whitt Otis & Nell Osborn Jim & LaRue Coover Wallace & Barbara Westervelt Ernest & Mollie Achterberg John & Helen Schwenker Gordon & Chris Gresh Alden & Sarah Miller Ray & Ada Miller Clyde & Mary Johnson Willis & Rosenell Cunningham Keith & Betty Boyd Richard & Geri Dixon David & Janet Wehrenberg Dale & Patricia Gregston A.B. & Gwen Steen Jerry & Imogene Headley Jim & Betty Jane Bailey Ray & Betty Gordy Roland & Ouida Griffith Bob & Donna Keener Richard & Darlene Baker Jim & Bettye Craig Bob & Wanda Stotts Jack & Pat Compton Don & Terry Davis Les & Evelyn Nienhuis John & Edna Middleton Bill & Donna Ritchie
05/20/1948 06/15/1948 08/21/1948 09/04/1948 09/04/1948 09/10/1948 10/01/1948 10/02/1948 10/31/1948 12/19/1948 02/05/1949 02/18/1949 06/02/1949 07/02/1949 07/31/1949 08/21/1949 08/21/1949 09/03/1949 11/12/1949 12/10/1949 12/18/1949 12/30/1949 02/10/1950 02/18/1950 06/04/1950 06/04/1950 06/11/1950 08/20/1950 10/07/1950 11/22/1950 11/25/1950 12/09/1950 12/23/1950 02/02/1951 02/03/1951 02/17/1951 03/15/1951 05/04/1951 06/10/1951 06/21/1951 08/31/1951 09/29/1951 11/03/1951 11/03/1951 11/22/1951 02/09/1952
5 7years 5 7years 5 7years 5 7years 5 7years 5 7years 5 7years 5 7years 5 7years 5 7years 5 7years 5 6years 5 6years 5 6years 5 6years 5 6years 5 6years 5 6years 5 6years 5 6years 5 6years 5 6years 5 6years 5 5years 5 5years 5 5years 5 5years 5 5years 5 5years 5 5years 5 5years 5 5years 5 5years 5 5years 5 5years 5 4years 5 4years 5 4years 5 4years 5 4years 5 4years 5 4years 5 4years 5 4years 5 4years 5 4years
Wayne & Betty Crockett Bill & June Carr Dick & Gwen Mohler Monroe & Janiece Reece Dean & Marilynn Smith A.J. & Corrine Cobble Don & Dusty Clemons Dick & Marcia Marshall Jack & Barbara Anthony Dean & Regina Daniel Bob & Gladys Murphy Gary & Celeste Zarley Bill & Shirley Curry Don & Betty Kent John & Beverly Baker Vic & Roberta Hairston R.D. & Mary Kirkland Glenn & Norma Hogg Jim & Charlene Yeager Walt & Marion Neary Frank & Betty Schemm Fred & Sammie Justus Tom & Mary Duke Dick & Nevin Loerke Ron & Pat Thomson Dwayne & Awilda Godsey Robert & Mary Lynn Milam Ross & Ina Vrooman Van & Nola Dickson Cleo & Frankie Warren Floyd & Vida Bruntzel Ken & Carmen Finch Richard & Phyllis Kurtzweil Jerry & Johnna Himes Vernon & Maralee Jones Irv & Colleen Rinehart Roger & Joyce Clark Ben & Joy Weddington Bill & Phyllis Taylor Merle & Marylou Howell Vance & Mary Sharpe Ralph & Marion Daugherty Ken & Sheila Bays Bill & Pixie DeWitt Charlie & Jeane Abbey Ron & Sue Shook Paul & Shirley Hockett Fred & Nancy Gardner Joe & Betty Oglesby Jim & Norma Morrison Vernon & Lennis Kolb Karl & Mary Kay Ball Don & Ruth Bauer Howard & Bobbie Cotten Bob & Helen Frymire Jack & Phyllis Givens John & Shirley Ann Smith Mel & Mary Pearson Harold & Eleanor Shirk Bill & Naomi Culver Bob & Beverlyn Summers George & Maxine Clinton Bill & Glenda Horry Dean & Carol Carlile Joe & Pat Henderson Gary & Jackie Parker 35 THE FAMILY ROOM
05/31/1952 06/30/1952 08/01/1952 08/02/1952 08/17/1952 09/14/1952 10/07/1952 10/11/1952 10/25/1952 11/08/1952 01/24/1953 03/28/1953 05/30/1953 05/30/1953 05/31/1953 06/01/1953 06/03/1953 06/06/1953 06/07/1953 06/10/1953 06/18/1953 06/20/1953 07/10/1953 08/09/1953 08/18/1953 09/05/1953 09/06/1953 09/26/1953 11/21/1953 11/26/1953 12/13/1953 12/27/1953 01/09/1954 02/27/1954 04/03/1954 04/03/1954 05/08/1954 06/17/1954 08/22/1954 09/04/1954 09/04/1954 09/24/1954 10/23/1954 10/31/1954 11/25/1954 11/25/1954 01/14/1955 01/15/1955 01/29/1955 02/12/1955 02/19/1955 02/26/1955 02/27/1955 04/16/1955 05/21/1955 05/22/1955 05/31/1955 06/01/1955 06/04/1955 08/12/1955 08/14/1955 10/04/1955 10/15/1955 11/06/1955 11/26/1955 02/04/1956
5 3years 5 3years 5 3years 5 3years 5 3years 5 3years 5 3years 5 3years 5 3years 5 3years 5 3years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 2years 5 1years 5 1years 5 1years 5 1years 5 1years 5 1years 5 1years 5 1years 5 1years 5 1years 5 1years 5 1years 5 1years 5 1years 5 1years 5 1years 5 1years 5 0years 5 0years 5 0years 5 0years 5 0years 5 0years 5 0years 5 0years 5 0years 5 0years 5 0years 5 0years 5 0years 5 0years 5 0years 5 0years
February Marriage Milestones Ray & Betty Gordy February 17, 1951 55 Years
Jerry & Imogene Headley February 2, 1951 55 Years Jim & Betty Jane Bailey February 3 55 Years
Ed & Rita Lenfesty February 19, 1956 50 Years
Larry & Jeri Myerley February 26, 1956 50 Years
Gary & Jackie Parker February 4, 1956 50 Years
Congratulations to all couples who are celebrating Milestone Anniversaries. Report your Milestone Anniversary to p email@example.com or call 392-1146.
Roger & Mary Laney January 22 40 Years Bob & Barbara Avakian February 29 30 Years Jan & Bernie Skinner February 21 25 Years Mark & Teresa Springer February 14 20 Years
Published on Mar 25, 2008
Published on Mar 25, 2008
The Tidings is published monthly to convey the message of transformed lives through Jesus Christ and to inform Asbury family and friends of...