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Christian Concourse
Newsletter of the Month

February 2014

 

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

 

We thank each of you for your support to further the work of this ministry. We could not do what we do without your kind generosity. I know many of you receiving this letter pray for us with genuine love - love for us and love for the dear residents of long-term care facilities all over the English-speaking world who are strengthened and encouraged in their faith in Jesus Christ through this work. We regularly receive phone calls and emails requesting our free materials. It is such a delight to hear from so many other Christian ministers whom God Almighty has enlisted in His huge army of nursing home ministers. We count it a great privilege to be able to arm them with our hymn booklets and CDs and we thank each of you for making it possible for us to do so. Many of the calls for our products are requests for replacements for materials that are worn out! Praise God!

 

 Our most popular resource is our hymn booklet, Favorite Hymns of Grace. It is thirty pages long, 5 1/2" by 8 1/2". There are 27 favorite gospel hymns, a summary of the Good News of Jesus Christ, and three pages of scripture - all in large, easy-to-read print. The handy size and light weight of the hymnbook makes it just right for the weak hands that have to hold it and the large black print is readable to most of those who are able to sing from it. For those suffering dementia, having a hymn booklet to hold gives them a point of focus helping them feel connected to the activity going on around them. It is not unusual for us to witness an agitated, confused resident peacefully calm down and begin to sing with us the classic hymns of faith in "Favorites."

 

Because we produce the hymn booklets ourselves we are able to keep the per-copy costs down to a minimum. By our last accounting, each booklet costs us less than 18 cents in raw materials. These materials include ink, masters for the printing presses, maintenance for the machines, staples and paper. Since our costs are so low, we can freely distribute these marvelous little missionary tools, and tell volunteers and staff of facilities that if a resident wants to keep their copy of the hymnal, let them have it! When they run low, we are glad to replace them as needed. All it takes is a phone call or an email.

 

At the end of each song in "Favorites" is a passage of Scripture that is related to some part of the message in that song. It is very edifying to read the relevant Word of God after singing the song. Often, the Holy Spirit will use this moment to inspire the minister spontaneously with some spiritual insight or encouragement for His "little children" in the service.

 

It is very interesting to find that 27 hymns in the booklet are enough to be able to use it continuously from one service to the next. Our experience points us to the following factors that make this true: the theme of each song is based on God's infinite Word; there are many worthy messages and many challenging concepts in each song affording the Holy Spirit 100's of golden nuggets to glean; the familiarity itself of each song is very desirable to the population we are ministering to - they really like what's familiar; the time-tested value of these songs is evident even to those who aren't familiar with them; and the wonderful memories that are attached to each song makes them timeless - these timeless hymns never get old to those who love them:

 

Jesus Saves

O How I Love Jesus

What a Friend We Have in Jesus

I Need Thee Every Hour

Blessed Assurance

Amazing Grace

My Faith Looks Up to Thee

Sweet Hour of Prayer

Blest Be the Tie that Binds

Just a Closer Walk with Thee

Savior, Like a Shepherd Lead Us

'Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus

Only Trust Him

Rock of Ages

Trust and Obey

When We All Get to Heaven

Revive Us Again

At Calvary

A Mighty Fortress Is Our God

Higher Ground

Standing on the Promises

At the Cross

The Old Rugged Cross

Were You There?

How Firm a Foundation

It Is Well with My Soul

Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing

 

If you or someone you know could use this or any of our free resources, please let us know. Thank you.



Sincerely, Blessings to You,

Jerry and Dar

Jerry and Dar Johnson

 

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