Tag: ministry

Ministry to Dads, and Other Men – “Dad Tired” Men’s Ministry – 4/03/24

Ministry to Dads, and Other Men – “Dad Tired” Men’s Ministry – 4/03/24

Many men are tired, feeling guilty, and beat down — because of the challenge of meeting expectations, and (often) because they don’t feel the presence of a support system around them.

Into those realities, comes a national men’s ministry named Dad Tired.  It’s founder, Christian pastor Jerrad Lopes, tells Family Life’s Greg Gillispie about the unexpectedly profound rationale behind the group’s name. He talks about why most men today feel like they struggle, about the one common theme he senses from men across the country (and how guys can resolve that #1 dilemma).

In this conversation, he also talks very personally about his own crisis which led to the beginning of the Dad Tired Ministry eight years ago, how he helps dads (and all men) discover hope and healing, and ways that wives and churches and friends can help encourage the men in their lives.

Lopes also previews his upcoming conference on Saturday April 13 at Batavia, New York. Details, registration and ticket information are available from www.FamilyLife.org/events.

Jerrad Lopes is also a podcaster and author on these matters. DadTired.com has an online community where thousands of men have connected and found mutual encouragement.

Hometown Heroes – Bill Matteson – 2/27/24

Hometown Heroes – Bill Matteson – 2/27/24

Family Life’s “Hometown Heroes” Feature

COPE is “Children of Opioid Parents and Empowerment”.

The program in Chautauqua County, New York, offers of full year of services to children and teens who lost a parent to an opioid overdose.

Bill Matteson is the executive director of the COPE Foundation 19. He knows this tragedy personally. One of his sons died at age 29 due to heroin laced with fentanyl, leaving three children without their father. Matteson offers his family’s story as an encouragement — and a caution — to other families.

In this conversation, he also tells us about how the COPE program became a positive step his pastor promised could come from the disaster, as well as the ways COPE reaches out to guide other children who have faced something similar. It is open as well to children who This effort also includes counseling sessions with a Christian agency.




Hometown Heroes” is hosted by Family Life’s Mark Webster. He talks with individuals throughout Pennsylvania and New York who are transforming lives and answering real human needs in their local communities.

This feature airs during the Family Life Noon Report on Tuesdays, and is available on our News Podcasts website and through most podcast sources. You are invited to subscribe to this feature — and to share this interview with anyone who may find it helpful for their circumstance, or for a congregation looking to create a similar outreach.

Campus Ministry – Positive Impact for Today’s Young Adults – 2/22/24

Campus Ministry – Positive Impact for Today’s Young Adults – 2/22/24

Christian outreach and support for today’s young adults has transformed — yet again.

The unique needs and perspectives of this generation of college students has shaped how campus ministries are doing their work. Today on Family Life, we hear from Mike Andrews, Impact Ministry’s campus pastor at Penn State Altoona.

Andrews tells us about how the most significant impact which meets students where their lives are is primarily in small groups and Bible studies. Even for young people who have never had experiences in a church — or who have wandered away from an earlier faith — he says a hallmark of this generation is an openness to talk about deep core values and to explore spiritual issues.

Greg Gillispie also asks Andrews to give guidance to local church leaders on effective ways to shape youth ministries and to encourage the children of the church to plug into campus ministries if they go away to school.

For more information:

  • The ImpacttheU website
  • A promotional video to show high school and college students




Hometown Heroes – “Night to Shine” – 2/20/24

Hometown Heroes – “Night to Shine” – 2/20/24


It’s Family Life’s “Hometown Heroes

Celebrate the congregations and volunteers in our listening area who created a magical, memorable evening for hundreds of special guests


The Night to Shine has become a global movement across the past decade, and numerous local churches are plugged in — many of them since the early days when the Tim Tebow Foundation launched a prom-styled festival for special-needs individuals.

In this edition of “Hometown Heroes”, we hear about the local area’s Night to Shine events held February 9, 2024. Representatives of three of these congregations tell us what happens, who is served, the significant responses of the families and the local community, and how this one night spurs churches to be attentive to special needs ministries throughout the year.

Our radio news feature offers highlights and stories. For each of these three congregations, we also will be posting expanded interviews with web-only bonus content.  

  • Hometown Heroes” feature — highlights from all three congregations, as aired on the Family Life Noon Report  [click the podcast player above to listen]
    • Bethel Life Church, Greenville PA:  bonus content with Pastor Kent Bell [web]
    • Auburn Alliance Church, Auburn NY:  bonus content with Event Coordinator Chad Mitchell  [web]
    • Sunbury Bible Church, Northumberland PA:  bonus content with Pastor Preston Atkinson [web]

Other congregations whose leaders and volunteers also deserve “Hero” status are other churches in the Family Life listening area. These also sponsored a Night to Shine this month:

    • Our Lady Of Peace, Erie PA [web]
    • New Life Baptist, New Wilmington PA [web]
    • LCBC, Dickson City PA Campus [web]
    • Epic Church-Buffalo: Williamsville NY [web]
    • Cross Creek Church, Elmyra NY [web]
    • Catalyst Church, Altoona PA [web]
    • Calvary Church, Boalsburg PA [web]

The Night to Shine movement began ten years ago (2014) as an outreach of the Tim Tebow Foundation. The Heisman trophy winner for the Florida Gators, former NFL quarterback and sports broadcaster started his foundation to fight for what they call the “MVP” — the Most Vulnerable People.

Tebow (himself growing up as a missionary kid) has been at the forefront of multiple forms of international Christian ministry.

Find out about the Foundation and watch the national/international Night to Shine video.


Hometown Heroes” is one of our Tuesday news features on our Noon Report and 5 O’Clock Report.


A fun P.S….  Tim Tebow (who became famous for waiting for a uniquely Christian marriage partner, despite his famous “eligible bachelor” status) met his future wife at his 2018 NTS, where Demi-Lynn was attending with her special-needs sister.)

The Calling – Episode 16: Pastor Christopher Powers and Pastor Sean Powers from Kingstree Church in Ohio

The Calling – Episode 16: Pastor Christopher Powers and Pastor Sean Powers from Kingstree Church in Ohio

The Calling is a Family Life original podcast for pastors that focuses on the personal and professional challenges they face in their mission to serve the Lord. In Episode 16, Steve’s guests are pastors Christopher and Sean Powers from Kingstree Church in Ohio. Christopher and Sean are not only pastors at the same church, they, along with Tim Powers of the Rise Up Morning Show, are brothers.  In this episode, they talk about the importance of family and the role their parents played in their lives.

Hometown Heroes – House of Hope – Pastor Angelique – 2/13/24

Hometown Heroes – House of Hope – Pastor Angelique – 2/13/24

“We want them to know from the second they walk in that this is a place where they will receive healing and acceptance and value.”

It’s “Hometown Heroes” on Family Life

The House of Hope in Williamsport PA exists to help women overcome dependency, barriers, and challenges — so they will move from a state of homelessness to thriving in the community through the transforming power of Jesus Christ. The six-month residential program is an outreach of the Sojourner Truth Ministries there.

Pastor Angelique Labadie-Cihanowyz is the executive director, and she tells us about some of the paths which led these women to desperate or challenging life circumstances, and how the love of Jesus Christ is demonstrated to those who find shelter and solace at the House of Hope.


Sojourner Truth Ministries is named for the former slave who became an outspoken advocate for women’s rights, temperance and abolition of slavery. STM in Williamsport operates the House of Hope, prepares hot lunches six days a week, and have provided an after-school program for children. Find out more from their website, where you can watch their “House Tour” and “Cardboard Stories” videos.

The Calling – Episode 15: Ray Bartholomew – McClure United Methodist Church in Deposit, NY

The Calling – Episode 15: Ray Bartholomew – McClure United Methodist Church in Deposit, NY

The Calling is a Family Life original podcast for pastors that focuses on the personal and professional challenges they face in their mission to serve the Lord. In Episode 15, Steve’s guest is Pastor Ray Bartholomew from McClure United Methodist Church in Deposit, NY who talks about how the church can (at times) be too judgemental.

Faith Under Fire – Christians support for the Jewish State – 01/11/24

Faith Under Fire – Christians support for the Jewish State – 01/11/24

“We have to understand that this is a SPIRITUAL battle, expressed in a MILITARY attack.”

— Susan Michael, on the October 7, 2023, attacks made against the nation of Israel

This week is the 13th week since Hamas militants poured across Israel’s southern border — killing, assaulting and kidnapping citizens of Israel and other nations.

This week, Greg Gillispie interview Susan Michael, the USA director of International Christian Embassy Jerusalem. That ministry is praying for and offering tangible forms of support and relief in the Middle East. Some 300,000 citizens and settlers there have fled their homes in these three months, to escape the violence and threats.

ICEJ is also active to address the growing anti-Jewish rhetoric and threats to Jews everywhere.

Michael says Christians — individually and through their churches — need to boldly and confidently speak out against antisemitic violence, demonstrations and hatred. In this “Faith Under Fire” feature, she offers three practical steps which people of faith can undertake, wherever they live.  

This conversation referred to websites such as these:

  • IsraelAnswers.com: Ways for Christians and non-Christians to respond to propaganda which fails to tell the truth about Jews or the nation of Israel
  • Stop Antisemitism:  Action steps to battle against demostrations, protests and threats against America’s Jewish communities
  • Prayer Initiative: The call for the world to pray in these spiritual, cross-cultural, and military battles
  • icejusa.org: The main website of ICEJ, including the 30-year history of this groups active support of Israel and Israelis
Hometown Heroes – Arctic League Charity – 11/28/23

Hometown Heroes – Arctic League Charity – 11/28/23

Hometown Heroes” on Family Life

An organization which will provide gifts for 3,000 children in the month ahead has a goal to assure that every child in their county receives a gift at Christmastime.

This year’s president of the Arctic League is Scott Heffner. He gives us the impressive history of the organization — this is its 111th year! He also talks about the logistics and fundraising which happen throughout December and throughout the year, to raise its budget of $175,000.


A Family Life Interview – Ron Hutchcraft on Church-Leader Burnout – 11/27/23

A Family Life Interview – Ron Hutchcraft on Church-Leader Burnout – 11/27/23

Ron Hutchcraft has spent decades as a Christian broadcaster, a ministry leader, a mission worker, and a sought-after speaker at religious conferences.

In October, he was featured at the Family Life Pastor’s Conference, providing inspiration to well over 200 pastors from Pennsylvania and New York. In conjunction with his visit to our listening area, he was interviewed by Family Life News, seeking his recommendations for clergy and for congregations.

In light of today’s difficult trends where 42 percent of congregational pastors are ready to quit, there is much which needs done to strengthen the church and reverse that reality.

In our conversation, Hutchcraft looks at the Big Three challenges identified by that research, offers practical steps to reduce stresses and loneliness, and warns that church fights over politics or social issues are against the Bible’s calling. He points to the impact of Covid shutdowns and mandates and disagreements, and gives a movie-plot parallel. You also will hear reminders that the church’s shepherds also hold responsibility to address their own misguided motivations and unhelpful mission drift.

Ron Hutchcraft leads Ron Hutchcraft Ministries, which works to provide spiritual rescue, bringing hope to unchurched people in the language of the listener. RHM also operates “On Eagles Wings”, an evagelistic and training outreach to Indigenous young people.

His daily radio story, “A Word With You”, airs multiple times each weekday on Family Life broadcasting, plus our online streams.


A parallel Family Life Podcast is also available:  Check our pastors’ first-person stories on “The Calling” with Steve Smith. Episodes can be found here.



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