Monthly Archives: February 2007

20070225 Brigada Today

In this issue…

  1. ONLINE SURVEY FOR THOSE BECOMING MISSIONARIES
  2. CHURCH WEBSITE TOOL NOW AVAILABLE TO SYNDICATE
  3. KEEP UP WITH THE CHANGES AT MISSIOPEDIA
  4. “ETHNO-WORSHIP” IN THE MIDDLE EAST
  5. TEACH ENGLISH WITH CONFIDENCE AND INTEGRITY
  6. “WRECKED” EZINE LAUNCHED
  7. MAC USERS CAN ENCRYPT TOO
  8. WANTED: PRAYER COORDINATORS & MOBLIIZERS
  9. NEEDED: BIBLE STUDIES RESOURCES IN KREYOL AND ENGLISH
  10. EMPOWER BRIGADA
  11. THE BACK-PAGE: MORE “COOL TOOLS” FOR CROSS-CULTURAL MINISTRY
  12. CLOSING STUFF

  1. ONLINE SURVEY FOR THOSE BECOMING MISSIONARIES — Gateway Training Centre is conducting a questionnaire for anyone interested in becoming a missionary (including missionary candidates/appointees.) They invite you to answer 12 questions that will help them serve the training needs of new missionaries. Please pass this URL to anyone considering missionary service, either short-term or long-term.

    http://gatewaytraining.org/survey.html

    (Note, due to its internal limitations, this URL does not work for Internet Explorer version 7. All other versions should work fine.)


  2. CHURCH WEBSITE TOOL NOW AVAILABLE TO SYNDICATE — Internet Evangelism Day’s new self-assessment questionnaire can now be syndicated into any other website (or republished in print):

    http://ied.gospelcom.net/churchdesign-syndicate.php


  3. KEEP UP WITH THE CHANGES AT MISSIOPEDIA — Some have been following the development of the Missiopedia at Justin Long’s Momentum site. It’s an open-source Wiki-style encyclopedia describing global Christianity and Christian mission in particular. Now you can keep up with the changes there. Just join the moderated discussion e-group by sending an e-mail to Notify-missiopedia-subscribeatstrategicnetworkdotorg You can also subscribe to RSS feeds for new pages and recent changes. Point your RSS reader to:

    http://www.momentum-mag.org/wiki/Special:Newpages?feed=rss


  4. “ETHNO-WORSHIP” IN THE MIDDLE EAST — Passionate about worship? Ready to use your music ability and learn new skills? Want to connect music and missions – especially in places where Christ followers are restricted, persecuted, or unknown? Spend two unforgettable weeks on an “ethno-worship” trip with one of OM’s Heart Sounds International (HSI) teams going to the Middle East, June 5-19, 2007. The HSI team welcomes musicians, worship leaders, audio engineers, and videographers to do music research, as well as songwriting and field recording with a group of Middle Eastern believers. Go to

    http://www.heart-sounds.org

    or email frank(at)heart-sounds(dot)org. [As a means of preventing SPAM for our contributors, in the preceding email address, please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .] Come along with us!


  5. TEACH ENGLISH WITH CONFIDENCE AND INTEGRITY — Invest three weeks in practical TESOL training and ensure that your teaching is effective and your ministry with students is enhanced. During Essentials of TESOL, July 9-27, 2007, at Biola University in southern California, you will: learn methods and techniques for teaching English language skills, be introduced to the sound and grammar systems of English, discover teaching materials, explore cultural issues, and learn appropriate ways of being a Christian teacher. You will also get supervised experience teaching non-native speakers. Non-credit tuition is only $525. (Credit is also available.) Dorm space is available. Visit

    http://www.biola.edu/sics/academics_tesol.cfm

    or contact kitty(dot)purgason(at)biola(dot)edu for an application. [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]


  6. “WRECKED” EZINE LAUNCHED — In affiliation with Adventures in Missions, a grassroots e-magazine has been launched and is in its second month. “Wrecked” primarily serves to reach out to and profile the stories and thoughts of young adults who are searching for meaning and action in their faith. You can visit the project at

    http://www.wreckedfortheordinary.com


  7. MAC USERS CAN ENCRYPT TOO — Thanks to our encryption volunteer who reminds us that MAC users can mimic a lot of TrueCrypt’s offerings on a Mac without any additional software by using Apple’s Disk Utility to create a virtual volume that can be encrypted with very good (AES128) technology. If anyone is interested in knowing how to do this, our anonymous volunteer has provided step-by-step instructions. Just go read this item at

    http://www.brigada.org/today/articles/mac-encryption.html

    By the way, most Mac experts do not recommend using Apple’s built-in FileVault, as it encrypts everything in the user’s home folder, including large media files.


  8. WANTED: PRAYER COORDINATORS & MOBLIIZERS — Interested in networking with other prayer coordinators or prayer mobilizers in mission organizations? If so, let Betty know at prayer(at)teamexpansion(dot)org [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]

  9. NEEDED: BIBLE STUDIES RESOURCES IN KREYOL AND ENGLISH — Here’s a worker in Haiti serving all ages looking for bilingual sound Bible studies (English and “Kreyol”) especially for use with leadership training there. If you know where he can find something, write him asatalbot(at)juno(dot)com [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .] or read more about his mission at

    http:// www.MissionsofLove.org


  10. EMPOWER BRIGADA — Our hats go off to The Chapel in St. Joseph, MI for their recent gift of $100 to Brigada to encourage us onward. And Blessed Hope is still at it with a gift of $50 due to InPhonic phone commissions for Oct. – Dec. 2006 (Thanks for subscribing to them, Daniel!). Thanks Blessed Hope! To learn more about their great service and low rates, visit:

    http://www.lowermyphonebill.com/brigada

    Join others in spurring Brigada on to good works? Just click on “Sponsor/Donate” in the top menu (to use PayPal or a credit card), or if you prefer, send a check payable to Team Expansion to: Team Expansion (Brigada secretary), 13711 Willow Reed Dr., Louisville, KY 40299. (Team Expansion is a 501(c)3 incorporation so for USA citizens, your checks made out to Team Expansion are tax-deductible.) As always, be sure to let us know if you’d like us to promote any particular service or ministry, or if you’d prefer your gift be anonymous. And thank you in advance for helping.


  11. THE BACK-PAGE: MORE “COOL TOOLS” FOR CROSS-CULTURAL MINISTRY — We’ve been listing some fun and practical tools for cross-cultural ministry. These are items to which others have drawn attention as they’ve traveled with me abroad. Our first few tools dealt with jet lag and how to live with it — or perhaps even avoid it all together. But now let’s move on to some other “hacks” for the voyage:

    *** YOUR OWN MOSQUITO TENT (for malaria-infested areas) — Maybe this seems like overkill, but there’s something deeply secure about knowing that wherever you land to sleep, you’re covered. I recommend taking along something like the Epco Tropicscreen II. (Google it and the Campmor.com version will probably come up in the top 5 for about $70. Worth every penny of it. Completely enclosed.)

    *** AC ADAPTORS THAT DON’T REQUIRE CONVERTERS/TRANSFORMERS — Read the fine print on the AC Adaptor for your camcorder, laptop and/or digital camera. Odds are, if it’s less than 5 years old, you really don’t need an adaptor/transformer for it. (It’ll probably say something like 110- 240V.) Just get a “tip adaptor” to change the shape of the plug so it’ll properly plug in in your hotel room or host’s home.

    *** RENT OR BUY A “WORLDPHONE” FOR EMERGENCIES — If you need to stay connected, consider renting a cell phone and/or SIM card from the folks at Telestial.

    http://www.telestial.com/

    If you use a US-based cell network like I do (I like Sprint’s plans), you’ll have to pick up a cheap GSM phone on ebay. Ask Telestial for help. Then ask them for a SIM card that will connect to the cell network in your destination country. Odds are, the cost will be prohibitive for anything but emergencies or a daily 2′ check-in. But having the cell phone option will be a great sense of security.

    *** RENT A SATPHONE (for dangerous or “out back” areas) — If you’re unsure about relying on cell coverage for any reason, ask Telestial about them too. (See link above.) They might not be the cheapest, but they know their stuff. Again, the cost is prohibitive … unless you’re about to be kidnapped and you need to get a call out. Then the cost will be minimal. :-)

    *** RENT A SAT MODEM (when you absolutely have to have the Net) — If you’re not sure there will be good connectivity in your area and you simply *must* remain connected, consider a Thrane Sat Modem or its equivalent. Something like the Trane Explorer 500 (via the BGAN network) shouldn’t set you back more than $115/week. Granted, that’s too much for the typical instant messaging with your kids, perhaps. But if your office needs you to be in touch for a few emails each day, then it’s really not a terrible deal. You can connect at up to 128K via USB. It’s pretty easy once you get the hang of it. For an example, visit:

    http://www.satellitephonestore.com

    although that’s just one of many vendors you could research.

    More cool tools next time around…

20070218 Brigada Today

In this issue…

  1. WHAT I LOVE ABOUT SHARPCAST
  2. WHAT I LOVE ABOUT ADOBE LIGHTROOM
  3. INSIGHT INTO ISLAM IN THE NORTH AFRICAN SETTING
  4. GET BY “ON THE CHEAP” WITH TRUECRYPT
  5. SUPPORT RAISING TRAINING
  6. SEARCHING FOR EFL MATERIALS FOR AFRICAN CONTEXT
  7. CLARIFICATION ON SECURITY OF SKYPE-OUT CALLS
  8. THE CALL FOR TWO BIBLE SUNDAYS ANNUALLY
  9. EXAMPLES OF INNOVATION IN MISSION
  10. THANKS FOR THE PARTNERSHIP
  11. THE BACKPAGE: MORE “COOL TOOLS” FOR THE ROAD
  12. CLOSING STUFF

  1. WHAT I LOVE ABOUT SHARPCAST — In a word, *lots*. Find Sharpcast at…

    http://www.sharpcast.com

    It’s probably best described as an all-encompassing (though somewhat “lightweight”) digital photo archival, sharing, and even editing solution. The first step is to download and install the application on your own PC. (There’s no spyware or adware associated with Sharpcast.) Use this free application to import and clean up photos you’ve captured or scanned. Of course, you might still need more traditional editing software like Photoshop if you plan to do any “heavy lifting.” But if you’re just straightening, lightening, or resizing, Sharpcast can do it all. (Use the “Export” feature to resize.) But the really cool part begins when you realize that the Sharpcast people are *cloning* your photos over to a web-based application as well. There are no limits on space, no limits on resolution, and no limits on time. That’s right — Sharpcast is making a commitment that they’ll stay in business for you there, for free, forever. So how do they intend to make money? By upselling you on additional goods and services, like making prints and enlargements of your photos.

    There are other services that let you store photos online. But I think you’ll appreciate the ease with which you can sweep your media into your desktop-installed application, knowing that it’s working in the background to backup everything on your own Sharpcast website. What’s more, you get to decide on an album-by-album basis how broadly you’ll share the material. So you could make non-sensitive photos totally public then use the site as the web-server for all of your digital media. At the push of a button (“Download your photo”), Sharpcast will give you web addresses on a photo-by-photo basis. These URLs are direct and ad-free. In this way, you can make even available photos at different resolution levels for your readers, supporters, and partners. Create a gallery of “web-res” versions for use with email and the web; Create another gallery of “laser-print-res” versions in case your supporters or friends want to print copies on their home printers; and create a final “high-res” version in case family members back home want to print enlargements on photo paper. The good thing is — they’re all free. If you’re working in a sensitive environment, just set up your sharing database so you open up the album only to particular users, restricted by password. The photos aren’t “encrypted”, but nor will they be searched by indexing “spiders”. So they won’t be seen through Google images.

    All in all, Sharpcast is a great service, especially for the price — absolutely free. Just remember you heard about it on Brigada. :-)


  2. WHAT I LOVE ABOUT ADOBE LIGHTROOM –- Only that it just might be the best lightweight, easiest-to-use Windows-compatible photo-editing program around. If your digital camera happens to be like mine (incapable of producing “RAW” format photos), Lightroom is truly a lifesaver. From now on, artists the world over can feel comfortable with a JPG-only digital cameras. What’s more, Lightroom will help you organize, catalogue and tag your digital photos, too. One has to wonder if this program won’t replace Photoshop Elements as one of the best lightweight digital photo-editing packages around. For more information, visit:

    http://www.adobe.com/products/photoshoplightroom/


  3. INSIGHT INTO ISLAM IN THE NORTH AFRICAN SETTING — What a difference Jesus will make! Um Daoud, with her years of living and working among Muslims, has once again given us a realistic picture of life for Muslim women. This time, in “Things I Never Told My Mother,” she illustrates the life of thousands who live in more secular Muslim countries and the struggle they face between Western influences on their societies and what little they know of Islam. Things I Never Told My Mother can be found through online book distributors. (Xulon Press, Jan 2007. ISBN: 1602660107. Paperback, 332 pages). For comments or questions you can contact Um Daoud at UmDaoud2004(at)yahoo(dot)com

  4. GET BY “ON THE CHEAP” WITH TRUECRYPT — Looking for an economic solution to the whole portable encryption question? Look no further. Get TrueCrypt on a 1GB flashdrive from

    http://www.meritline.com

    for $12 including shipping. Almost “cheap as free,” this comprehensive solution will help you cover email for the time being too.

    http://meritline.com/1gb-pqi-mr-flash-u172-usb-2-silver.html

    (Thanks Raul!)


  5. SUPPORT RAISING TRAINING — The BodyBuilders “Personal Support Raising Boot Camp” is a two-day intense training for first-time support raisers and under-funded veterans. Their goal: Getting you to 100% in 100 days! Check out their website for more details at http://www.thebodybuilders.net or email

    info(at)thebodybuilders(dot)net

    Upcoming Boot Camp dates:

    Colorado Springs, CO – March 26-27th Jacksonville, FL – April 27-27th Bellflower, CA – June 4-5th Register online today.


  6. SEARCHING FOR EFL MATERIALS FOR AFRICAN CONTEXT — A team of teachers doing evangelistic EFL classes is looking for curriculum that is culturally appropriate for Africa (not ones which use the Bible to teach English). Is there anything out there? Please send your responses to

    dclouser(at)gmail.com

    We’ll ask Deb’ to send us a summary job later.


  7. CLARIFICATION ON SECURITY OF SKYPE-OUT CALLS — Earlier, we mentioned that we had understood that “Skype-out” calls were not secure. This was due, in part, to the fact that we noted that the “padlock” icon was not visible on these types of calls. But thanks to a point-in-the-right- direction from our good friend, Justin, we’ve now learned that even Skype-out calls are secure until the point at which they tie into the PSTN (regular telephone or mobile phone) number/phone number. This clarification came directly from the FAQ materials at the Skype website. So to clarify, Skype-out calls *are* encrypted until they are transformed into normal telephone copper.

  8. THE CALL FOR TWO BIBLE SUNDAYS ANNUALLY — Annual Talking Bible Sundays are now possible in thousands of churches so that God’s people can become aware and involved. A Talking Bible Sunday helps God’s people become aware that millions of Christians living in oral cultures do not read. They come to recognize that Talking Bibles in the hearer’s own language are the exciting new possibility in this digital, microchip era. Hence the call from Talking Bibles International for churches to observe two Bible Sundays annually – the well known Gideon Bible Sunday and the newer Talking Bible Sunday. For more information visit

    http://www.talkingbibles.org or contact

    info(at)talkingbibles(dot)org


  9. EXAMPLES OF INNOVATION IN MISSION — Are you looking for inspiration in your ministry? Jim Reapsome (retired editor of EMQ) and Jon Hirst (Director of Communications at HCJB Global) have just launched a book that showcases the innovations of thirteen mission practitioners. Whether you want to learn about how TEAM launched e-learning, how Olive Technologies integrates business as mission, and how Link Care and YWAM are re-imagining member care in the developing world, these quick case studies provide a great workshop to help you innovate within your ministry context. Read more about the book at

    http://www.authenticbooks.com/search/isbn/1932805761

    and

    http://www.innovationinmission.com


  10. THANKS FOR THE PARTNERSHIP — Thanks to recent Brigada donors which included $21.20 from Blessed Hope, a Christian owned US long distance service with cheap rates for people living in the USA. Get 4.9 cents per minute interstate rates with no monthly or hidden fees. If you are paying higher rates, then visit this site.

    http://www.lowermyphonebill.com/brigada

    and $25 from Magazine Training Int’l, equipping Christian magazine publishers for effective ministry in East-Central Europe, Asia and around the world. Learn more about their work at:

    http://www.magazinetraining.com

    Can you join them in spurring Brigada on to good works? Just visit:

    http://www.brigada.org

    and click on “Sponsor/Donate” in the top menu (to use PayPal or a credit card), or if you prefer, send a check payable to Team Expansion to: Team Expansion (Brigada secretary), 13711 Willow Reed Dr., Louisville, KY 40299. (Team Expansion is a 501(c)3 incorporation so for USA citizens, your checks made out to Team Expansion are tax-deductible.) As always, be sure to let us know if you’d like us to promote any particular service or ministry, or if you’d prefer your gift be anonymous. And thank you in advance for helping.


  11. THE BACKPAGE: MORE “COOL TOOLS” FOR THE ROAD — In the past couple of editions of Brigada Today, we’ve listed some tools to help you leverage your travel for greater effectiveness (or at least more fun). So far, we’ve listed…
    *** #1: “Determine to beat jet lag”
    *** #2: “Sleep East, Party West”
    *** #3: “Gear up to sleep” (Eye screen, Ear plugs, Travel pillow, an extra blanket, empty seats, bad movies eastbound, floss & brush, and even your favorite house slippers)

    Today we cover Tool #4: Herding *kids* while traveling. Truly, this is a heartbeat item, as is evidenced by the email I recently received from a faithful Brigada participant from Taiwan, who wrote, ” In my experience… when a small child has jet lag… EVERYONE has jet lag… no matter how much I *believe* that my kids aren’t awake at 3AM and want to go to the park and play… it doesn’t seem to make them sleepy at all.” LOL Well said, Scott. So how can we help kids make the most of their time in the air and/or on the road with us? Well books could be written, for sure, but we’ll just list 5 principles to get the juices stirring…

    ****** a) Keep ’em busy — As anyone who travels can tell you, you have to plan ahead so you’ll have appropriate activities, interesting games, familiar (but replaceable) toys and, best of all, cool snacks. Use your imagination. Think like a kid. Ask for their input before you ever leave to go there.

    ****** b) [For infants and toddlers], Take along a stroller — Even though it will seem like a hassle, a stroller will help you in several key ways. First, it’s “home base” for all your stuff. Second, it’s a home base for the *munchkin*. Third, it’s a protected “security zone”. And finally, it’s a roving sleeper-car. You probably get the point on all those.

    ****** c) [For infants], Get them an airline bed — Again, this takes advanced planning. Some airlines still let you use the portable beds that fasten to the wall of the bulkhead. Several others have apparently ceased that practice. But in its place, they’ve come up with other strategies. Call around. Find a kid-friendly airline that flies where you fly. If worse comes to worse, pay the 10% extra ticket price to book a *seat* for your infant, and just drag along a cheap car seat that you pick up at a yard sale. See “b” above.

    ****** d) Recruit a partner to help you care for the kids — On a recent trip to the Balkans, while accompanying a young couple headed to one of Team Expansion’s mission fields, I took a turn caring for their 8-month- old baby so they could get at least *some* sleep through the night. I walked laps around the plane. I rocked her, bounced her, and otherwise entertained her for at least a *while* so the family could snooze. Find someone who will go along and do the same for you — and more.

    ****** e) Finally, remember the power of some potent cough medicine. [grin] If your child has a cold or congestion, it’s especially important… and that cough medicine just might be the ticket to put them to sleep for hours. I’m not saying drug ’em and forget about ’em. But at the same time, if the medicine is appropriate, and if it happens to make them drowsy, *use* it. [grin]

    Next edition, more cool travel tools for the road, including the story of “the rat I recently killed” while traveling.

20070211 Brigada Today

In this issue…

  1. WANT GOOD WEB-VIDEO-CONFERENCE CALLS? TRY SIGHTSPEED
  2. REMEMBER SKYPE “OUT” IS NOT ENCRYPTED
  3. RESOURCE FOR EDUCATING CHILDREN OVERSEAS
  4. POOL YOUR CONTACTS FOR MISSIONARY GUEST HOUSING WORLDWIDE
  5. CHURCH MOBILIZATION TOOL
  6. LOOKING FOR THE PERFECT SUMMER TURKEY MISSIONS OPPORTUNITY?
  7. GET PERSPECTIVES IN A YEAR!
  8. START LEARNING YOUR DESTINATION LANGUAGE NOW
  9. EASTER! – DID IT REALLY HAPPEN?
  10. THANKS FOR THE PARTNERSHIP
  11. SPUR ON BRIGADA TO GOOD WORKS
  12. THE BACKPAGE: TOOLS FOR THE ROAD
  13. CLOSING STUFF

    1. WANT GOOD WEB-VIDEO-CONFERENCE CALLS? TRY SIGHTSPEED — I know, I know. Everybody and his brother are doing Skype. But if you’re looking for high-quality *video*, I think SightSpeed has them beat:

      http://www.sightspeed.com

      So if it works on your machine, and you want real-time web-cam- conferences on the cheap, grab it.


    1. REMEMBER SKYPE “OUT” IS NOT ENCRYPTED — We’re all pretty casual about what we say on Skype these days. We’ve come to depend on its built-in encryption. That’s all well and good . . . unless we’re using Skype-out (or Skype-in, for that matter), where Skype bridges with a “plain-old telephone service”. In *those* cases, just keep in mind that the packets you’re sending are completely open to anyone at any bus stop along the Internet — meaning that your conversation won’t be all that private, actually. In order to use Skype’s encryption, it has to be Skype to Skype. (And even then, remember that Skype has sold much of its technology to mainland China — so there are no guarantees if that’s where you live.)

    1. RESOURCE FOR EDUCATING CHILDREN OVERSEAS –- Fitted Pieces (667 pages, 2nd printing), published by SHARE Education Services, is a comprehensive collection of articles from more than 50 recognized experts in the field of educating children in a cultural context outside their passport country. Topics include evaluating education options, planning, choosing curriculum, second language issues, testing, and TCK challenges. It is designed for those using any education system–national school, home schooling, on-line, and other options. The book cost is $25, but it’s also available on CD for $15. Volume discounts are available. To order, see

      http://www.ShareEducation.org

      or write fittedpieces(at)shareeducation(dot)org. [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]


    1. POOL YOUR CONTACTS FOR MISSIONARY GUEST HOUSING WORLDWIDE — [edited]

    1. CHURCH MOBILIZATION TOOL – DualReach has developed the Design Your Impact Workshop, a five-hour seminar that enables church leaders to discover their congregation’s key characteristics and resources (their DNA) and identify a strategic missions focus that can unleash powerful, new global dynamic from their church. Workshops are led by trained individuals with extensive teaching resources: 7 video clips of model churches, 2 animation clips, PowerPoint®, Facilitator’s Manual and Participant’s Notebook. The next training date to become a Workshop facilitator is Thursday, April 12, in San Juan Capistrano, CA (south of Los Angeles). Learn more at…

      http://www.dualreach.org/missions/resources/index.shtml

      or email info(at)dualreach(dot)org [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]


    1. LOOKING FOR THE PERFECT SUMMER TURKEY MISSIONS OPPORTUNITY? — Come join a team anytime between June 12-July 9, 2007 for the Istanbul Community Outreach. This is a great opportunity to: Join an experienced/ministry team (working with Campus Crusade), use conversational English as a tool to meet needs and make new friends, develop lasting friendships with professionals, students and business people, and share your faith through tea times, home visits, social activities and final boat trip. Optional 7 churches bible tour. Recruit, bring and lead your own group if you wish. This is an ideal opportunity for first timers or alumni, individuals or church groups. For more information contact Doug at dougnann(at)gmail(dot)com or 303 776 3273. [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]

    1. GET PERSPECTIVES IN A YEAR! — Is your church interested in embracing God’s missionary heart? Do you need continuing education credit for missionary service? The Perspectives on the World Christian Movement course may be your answer. The Perspectives course covers the biblical, historical, cultural, and strategic basis for missions. ICM (International Christian Ministries) offers the course on-line for certificate, undergraduate, or graduate credit. You can take up to a year to complete the course. Check out

      http://www.icmusa.org/perspectives.php

      for more information and to sign up or email info(at)icm-intl(dot)org [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address, please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]


    1. START LEARNING YOUR DESTINATION LANGUAGE NOW — Back in the early 80s, I had the privilege of studying language learning skills under Tom & Betty Sue Brewster, the authors of the well-known language learning approach known as “LAMP”. Tom used to preach to us, “Listen, listen, listen. Listen to the language a *lot*!” I asked once if it was a mistake to start learning the language *before* departing for the destination. Tom clarified that not only is it not a mistake, it’s actually *helpful* to begin your listening & practicing *now*, so long as you don’t let it stress you out. He emphasized not to worry about production; just listen, listen, listen. So — want to get started?

      http://www.byki.com

      Just hop on over to “Before you know it” — byki.com. Pick a language and get started. (And thanks to Betty, Team Expansion’s Director of Prayer & Operations, for the tip!)


    1. EASTER! – DID IT REALLY HAPPEN? — If you have some doubts about the Easter story, Jesus coming back to life again, try reading the last chapter of Matthew’s gospel in EasyEnglish. It is magnificent! Go to

      http://www.easyenglish.info

      Click on Bible Books, then choose ‘Matthew’s Good News’ and scroll to chapter 28.


    1. THANKS FOR THE PARTNERSHIP — Thanks to the pair of Team Expansion missionaries in Bosnia who sent $100 for Brigada. Feel the love! They affirmed an encouragement that keeps us writing. The Balkans have spoken! What about your region of the world? Can you match their encouragement?

    1. SPUR ON BRIGADA TO GOOD WORKS — Want to spur us on? Just click on “Sponsor/Donate” in the top menu (to use PayPal or a credit card), or if you prefer, send a check payable to Team Expansion to: Team Expansion (Brigada secretary), 13711 Willow Reed Dr., Louisville, KY 40299. (Team Expansion is a 501(c)3 incorporation so for USA citizens, your checks made out to Team Expansion are tax- deductible.) As always, be sure to let us know if you’d like us to promote any particular service or ministry, or if you’d prefer your gift be anonymous. And thank you in advance for helping.

  1. THE BACKPAGE: TOOLS FOR THE ROAD — A couple of editions ago, we started a series known as “Tools for the Road.” Because of special circumstances, we delayed in continuing it — until now. Recall that our first “Tool for the road” had to do with what is commonly called jet lag. We called it, “Determine to beat jet lag”, urging you to “make up your mind that you’re not going to experience it.” I received some [well-deserved] razzing from some of my friends who have traveled internationally since then. They told me it because a running joke during the trip to say, “Remember — Doug says we’re not tired.” :-) But the truth is, that really is the first step. That having been said, here are the next couple of tools, also helpful to beat jet lag and general travel fatigue:

    *** Tool #2 — “Sleep East, Party West”: Memorize it. Then traveling transoceanic on those 8-hour (and sometimes 16-hour) flights, if you’re headed eastbound (e.g., from the USA to Europe), get to sleep as quickly as you can. Flights tend to depart around 6pm. Settle in, eat, then hit the sack. Remember, it really doesn’t matter if you sleep or not. The truth is, it’s kind of irrelevant whether or not you really sleep. The trick is to convince your body that you *did*. That’s why it’s always entertaining to me when people say, “I just can’t sleep on planes.” You don’t really *have* to; just *pretend* you are. (Besides, even if you’re just laying there, relaxing, it’s still restful. You’ve got the whole jet engine thing going on, the dark plane cabin, … just pretend. :-) ) Experts (like me :-) ) say that just laying completely still is at least *somewhat* helpful for your well-being anyway.

    Keep in mind, your eyes have to be closed. See Tool #3.

    *** Tool #3 — “Gear up to sleep”: My own philosophy is — no sleeping pills. I have this theory that you need to be in charge of tricking your body. If you turn that power over to a drug, you’ve given up control. Besides, what if an emergency occurs and you need to be at your best. (For example, what if someone tries to hijack the plane? Have you ever seen Jack Bauer take sleeping pills? :-) ) But you *do* need a tool kit. Don’t wait ’til the night before. Here’s what you’ll need:
    ****** Eye screen — I know, they look kind of hokey. But you need one of those sleep visors that all the elderly people wear. Swallow the pride and pick one up at a travel or luggage store. You’ll be glad you did.
    ****** Ear plugs — I love kids. I just like them to be silent while I sleep… or pretend to. :-) Read the instructions. Have someone teach you how to insert them. There’s a trick to “rolling” them, pulling up on your ear with the opposite hand (from behind your head), then holding them in place while they expand.
    ****** Travel pillow — Choose the skrunchie kind that just compresses like a goose-down sleeping bag, or use the inflatable “u-shaped” pillow like I do. Either way, choose *something*. Airlines provide a flimsy excuse. I don’t like ’em. Just not quite enough meat there for my purposes. Today’s newest jets have moving “ears” that you can swivel out on your head rest. Those are helpful. But again, you need to convince your body that you’ve gone to sleep. For that to happen, get a real pillow.
    ****** Nab an extra blanket — If you can, grab an unused blanket from a nearby unoccuppied seat. If the plane turns cold, you’ll need it for some uncovered area of your freezing body.
    ****** Maneuver for empty seats — If you’re the type that needs to be horizontal, try to scout out a location with an empty adjacent seat so you can sprawl. As for me, I’ve trained myself to sleep in one reclined seat. It’s almost more trouble than it’s worth, to me, to try to lay down across the 3, 4 or 5 “middle” seats in a big jet. But I *do* try to get an aisle (so I’m not a victim to someone else’s sleeping patterns). For me, it just feels less constricted. Regardless, find something that works for you.
    ****** Pray for bad movies eastbound — You think I’m joking. :-) But the principle is, ignore the media. Oh… maybe you can catch part or all of a movie while eating. (What’s better than dinner and a movie at 35,000 feet? :-) ) But as soon as chow-time is over, lose the remote.
    ****** Floss & Brush — I’m not kidding. Remember, the trick is — convince your body that you’ve slept. That means going through your whole before-bedtime routine. And finally, …
    ****** Put on your favorite house slippers — I’m not kidding. Bring your favorite pair of comfy, cozy slippers from home. Last thing, before you go to sleep, rest those tired dogs. Take off those wing-tips or heels; take off your dress socks. Put on a pair of comfy athletic socks (or whatever you like), your favorite slippers, and snooze!

    More tools next time, when we consider herding *kids* while traveling.

20070204 Brigada Today

In this issue…

  1. NEW MISSIONS AWARENESS TOOLS
  2. GO ONLINE, DOWNLOAD, LEARN A FOREIGN LANGUAGE
  3. VIDEO PRODUCTION WORKSHOPS
  4. BUILDING A MISSIOPEDIA
  5. MISSIONARY VIDEO CHANNELS
  6. TWO ACMC CONFERENCES GOING FORWARD AS PLANNED
  7. CORRECTED CONTACT INFORMATION FOR “MORE MISSIONS DRAMAS”
  8. AND *MORE* DRAMAS
  9. TRAINING IN ETHNOMUSICOLOGY
  10. RESOURCES FOR CHRISTIAN TEACHERS
  11. LAUNCHING A CHURCH PLANTING MOVEMENT AMONG AN ORAL CULTURE?
  12. DO YOU PLACE OVERSEAS CALLS FROM YOUR USA-BASED CELL PHONE?
  13. HELP ALAN GET THE WORD OUT ABOUT THE PERSECUTED CHURCH
  14. UNIQUE OPPORTUNITY FOR VOLUNTEERS
  15. LEARN A PRACTICAL SKILL FOR MISSIONS
  16. ONLINE MAGAZINE CORRECTION
  17. INDEBTED TO PARTNERS
  18. KEEP BRIGADA PUMPING
  19. THE BACKPAGE: MANY MOURN, SOME MOBILIZE CALEB PROJECT/ACMC
  20. CLOSING STUFF

  1. NEW MISSIONS AWARENESS TOOLS — Good News Productions, International has two new missions awareness tools to get youth excited about missions. The first is an exciting new children’s program called GNPI Kids Live that will work in conjunction with any VBS program. It is a five-part digital DVD presentation of missions from a kid’s perspective. It is fashioned after a talk show in which the presenter is a puppet character named Rocky Surface. … To preview this material, go to

    http://www.gnpi.org/kidslive

    The second tool is a movie called All Things New. It is being marketed as a fundraising tool for youth to raise funds for missions trips or Christ In Youth conferences, while also raising funds for Good News Productions, International and Christians’ Haven (The ministry in the Philippines on which the movie is based.). As Matt Proctor, President of Ozark Christian College, put it, “This movie will call viewers to risky obedience and the need to put hands and feet on their compassion.” To view the trailer and get other information on this film, go to

    http://www.allthingsnewmovie.com

    You can also get more information on these tools by calling 800-457- 4674 and asking for Amber.


  2. GO ONLINE, DOWNLOAD, LEARN A FOREIGN LANGUAGE — If you have a broadband connection and a computer, you have access to a world of foreign language instruction — for free. And if you have an MP3 audio player, you can even carry lessons around with you to listen on the bus, in the car or anywhere else you listen to music. All kinds of language lessons are available in free “podcasts” (which are like radio programs you download from the Internet.) In his Chicago Tribune column “On Language” this week, Nathan Bierma lists the web sites for learning a major foreign language with the best quality, free language podcasts he could find. It is available at:

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/chi-0701230287jan24,1,5624467.story

    If that URL is too long, you can access the same web page with this link:

    http://tinyurl.com/2kz323

    Nathan includes resources to learn Mandarin Chinese, French, Italian, Spanish, German, Russian, Arabic, Greek, Latin and English as a Second Language. (Thanks to the anonymous friend who tipped us off to this item!)


  3. VIDEO PRODUCTION WORKSHOPS — High school youth around the world have a chance to learn the video production process from start to finish, creating programs with powerful Christian content in the process. Good News Productions, International is leading this innovative program called Media Challenge as a way to engage techno- savvy youth around the world in the process of reaching their peers using the tools of the media. The goal is to challenge Christian youth to speak out about issues of faith and practice, using the specific cultural context in which they live as the background for their programs. The workshops offer more than technical training; significant time is devoted to script development and writing to assure the content is on target and effective. For 2007, two USA based workshops will be held; one on the campus of St. Louis Christian College (July 1-7) and a second at Cincinnati Christian University (July 8-14). Two international workshops are scheduled; one in Zakosciele, Poland (July 22–August 4) and another in Chiang Mai, Thailand (June 17-23). Information about the USA workshops, including the curriculum and application process, can be found online at

    http://mediachallenge.org

    Information about the International workshops can be obtained by writing to director(at)mediachallenge(dot)org. [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .] Churches and missionaries who would like to host and/or sponsor an international workshop are also encouraged to contact the director, Bob Sartoris, at the address above. If you’d like to be involved in the workshops this summer, better hurry. There’s an end-of-March deadline coming up quickly.


  4. BUILDING A MISSIOPEDIA — It’s hard to believe it’s been nearly 7 years since the 2nd edition of the World Christian Encyclopedia was published. What’s the next generation of mission dictionaries, encyclopedias and atlases? Is it possible to do for mission reference works what Wikipedia did for human knowledge? Will we know unless we try? Justin Long has launched an experimental Missiopedia at

    http://www.momentum-mag.org/wiki/index.php

    If you have something you think should go in an encyclopedia about missions – an article about a country, a people group, a province, a city, a denomination, a ministry, or what have you – then now is the time for you to step up to the plate and participate.


  5. MISSIONARY VIDEO CHANNELS — Recently Justin Long asked if anyone was doing missionary videocasting on YouTube or Google Video. Justin got a few responses and, in order to make it manageable, he’s added a relevant page on the new Missiopedia wiki that he is developing (which might be blank so far, but let’s grow it). Anyone can add to the list by clicking to the page and clicking ‘edit’ at the top. See it (and the whole Missiopedia) online at

    http://www.momentum-mag.org/wiki/index.php/Missionary_Videocasting


  6. TWO ACMC CONFERENCES GOING FORWARD AS PLANNED — Here are at least two conferences on March 15-17 in Delaware and Detroit that are still going forward as planned. Perhaps they represent historic “last conferences” of ACMC. Though the conferences will not be, for legal reasons, under the banner of Initiative360, the content, speakers and resources will be the same as listed in the brochures. (Note that the Austin, TX conference on March 3 was cancelled.) Organizers reported that after last week’s Brigada, “People began calling in like crazy,” asking for information. For info on the Detroit Conference go to

    http://www.davidmays.org

    For the Delaware Conference, see the brochure at

    http://www.gracextensions.org/files/ACMCWilmingtonDE07.pdf

    or call 800-959-3523 (Tom Telford) or 410-561-8424 xt 210 (Joe Steinitz).


  7. CORRECTED CONTACT INFORMATION FOR “MORE MISSIONS DRAMAS” — [We recently featured an item “MORE MISSIONS DRAMAS” (Jan. 19th edition), but apparently the contact information was faulty. Here’s the item again, but the contact person has now provided us with a working email address.] As a follow-up to the BACKPAGE in the Brigada Today of January 5, Wycliffe Bible Translators also offers a series of 20 mission-themed skits called “World Class Missions Dramas” written by Blackie Blackwell and Amy Jung, edited by Ron Binder. These were specifically written to accompany Perspectives on the World Christian Movement lessons, so they are short, don’t need elaborate preparation in terms of set or props, and are dialogue-driven like a readers’ theater. They are available as an email attachment, on CD, or hard copy from Wycliffe Southwest in Temecula, CA. Contact Media Resources by phone at 951-719-1105 or email: media_resources_wsw(at)Wycliffe(dot)org [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address, please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]

  8. AND *MORE* DRAMAS — Get even more ideas for dramas over at…

    http://www.dramashare.com/

    where organizers seek to cater to those involved in missions and outreach and have many non-verbal dramas among the 1600+ scripts in their database.


  9. TRAINING IN ETHNOMUSICOLOGY — Want to do some serious study to be equipped to help others utilize their heart music? Attend the graduate- level courses in Ethnomusicology at the Graduate Institute of Applied Linguistics (GIAL) in Dallas, Texas. Three courses will be offered this summer: Applied Ethnomusicology (June 11-22), Field of Ethnomusicology/Anthropology of Music (June 25-July 13), and Analysis of Non-Western Music (July 19 – August 15). Learn more about them at:

    http://www.gial.edu/courses/ethnomusicology.htm

    or e-mail ethnomusicology(at)sil(dot)org [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]


  10. RESOURCES FOR CHRISTIAN TEACHERS — You can find materials to help Christian teachers, including parents, relate everything they teach to God and the Bible at

    http://www.transformingteachers.org

    Check out the Visual Valet, online articles, and downloads. The site has links to Christian teacher and school organizations around the world. If an organization you know about is not listed, please send suggestions to hklassen(at)janzteam(dot)com [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address, please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]


  11. LAUNCHING A CHURCH PLANTING MOVEMENT AMONG AN ORAL CULTURE? — Scriptures In Use

    http://www.siutraining.org

    is holding two workshops this spring that you should consider. March 30-31 will be an Orality Awareness Workshop at Word of Grace Church, Mesa., AZ that starts at 7 p.m. Friday night and ends by 3 p.m. Saturday. They’re asking $25 for lunch and materials. Contact briannah(at)wordofgrace(dot)org to register On May 10-12 “Communications Bridges to Oral Cultures” will be offered at First Christian Church, Phoenix, AZ. Sessions will be 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day. The class is designed for CPM Coaches and trainers. $75 for lunches, breaks and materials. Cindy(at)fccphx(dot)com to register. For more information on SIU and the training — jimbowman(at)siutraining(dot)org [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]


  12. DO YOU PLACE OVERSEAS CALLS FROM YOUR USA-BASED CELL PHONE? — If so, check out Nickel Talk, if you haven’t already.

    http://www.nickeltalk.com/

    It’s pretty straight-forward — 5 cents per minute, with no connect fees, on all mobile calls to Europe, Latin America, Asia & Australia. No monthly fees, no prepayment, no contracts, no phone cards, no pins, and keep your existing service. What could be simpler? (Note that we’re not referring this to earn some kind of sponsorship or affiliate bonus. This is just one beggar telling another beggar where to get bread.


  13. HELP ALAN GET THE WORD OUT ABOUT THE PERSECUTED CHURCH — Got a video or a recorded testimony on the persecuted church? Alan is a Missions Minister from Indiana who would like to get the word out. If you have a resource or a referral, click on over to…

    http://www.momentum-mag.org/wiki/Persecution#Get_the_Word_Out

    Let’s build a great list of interview footage, stats, worksheets, hand- outs, websites, … anything and everything that will help him get the word out about the persecuted church. [What’s the use in duplicating Justin’s great wiki! :-) Let’s ride the wave! ]


  14. UNIQUE OPPORTUNITY FOR VOLUNTEERS — OM Ship’s new vessel, the Logos Hope, is close to being ready for full-time service bringing knowledge, help and hope to the people of the world. They are looking for volunteers, who can join them for two weeks or more, to complete the last projects required to get the ship out of the shipyard. Volunteers are asked to cover their travel, health and insurance expenses but food and lodging after arrival are provided.

    For more information about this opportunity, please visit:

    http://www.omships.org/go=2

    or you can contact OM Ships at info(at)omships(dot)org [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address, please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]


  15. LEARN A PRACTICAL SKILL FOR MISSIONS — Simplified dental care can open many doors to evangelism and relationship building among the unreached. No drills, injections, electricity, or sophisticated equipment are involved – only simple hand instruments, a compassionate heart, and two weeks of your time. Now you can bring greatly needed dental care to your community. Courses offered monthly in Texas.

    http://www.dentaltrainingformissions.com

    or email dentaltrainingformissions(at)yahoo(dot)com [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]


  16. ONLINE MAGAZINE CORRECTION — Catch INTERLIT Magazine, which helps those publishing Christian literature in the non-western world, at:

    http://ccmipartners.org

    In the Feb. 12th edition, the contributor’s original submission had left out a strategic “n”. Please pardon any inconvenience. (Thanks Tim!)


  17. INDEBTED TO PARTNERS — Thanks to those who make Brigada happen through their prayers and financial partnership. This past week, Good News Productions stoked the fire with a $100 gift. Learn more about their ministry of media development and distribution at:

    http://gnpi.org/

    Insurance Services of America added fuel by sending sponsorship gifts in the name of Jason and Jon, who each had purchased insurance with them. So ISA promptly sent $20.95 in their name. It’s that simple. Purchase an insurance policy or trip interruption insurance with ISA and they’ll immediately help Brigada. Learn more at:

    http://www.missionaryhealth.net/brigada.htm

    Note that you must use this link or *tell* them in order for the sponsorship to happen. Thanks!


  18. KEEP BRIGADA PUMPING — Want to help Brigada pump out weekly editions to mobilizers, church members and mission professionals around the world? Just click on “Sponsor/Donate” in the top menu (to use PayPal or a credit card), or if you prefer, send a check payable to Team Expansion to: Team Expansion (Brigada secretary), 13711 Willow Reed Dr., Louisville, KY 40299. (Team Expansion is a 501(c)3 incorporation so for USA citizens, your checks made out to Team Expansion are tax- deductible.) As always, be sure to let us know if you’d like us to promote any particular service or ministry, or if you’d prefer your gift be anonymous. And thank you in advance for helping.

  19. THE BACKPAGE: MANY MOURN, SOME MOBILIZE CALEB PROJECT/ACMC — This past week, I felt as if I were standing in a visitation line at a funeral home. Countless fellow-strugglers identified with last edition’s “BackPage” item about the passing of Caleb Project and CMC (and the associated “Initiative 360″ merger). One Brigada participant from San Jose, CA, wrote ” I, too, was stunned when I went to the i360 site and found that message. … I was especially concerned about them personally. … Let’s keep praying and pushing–can’t let the Devil have a good day!” A reader from Plano, TX, shared, “I read today’s issue of Brigada quickly when I saw the subject line. I was an advocate for ACMC since I can remember attending a conference in the 1970’s. Initially, individual members received a copy of every publication they created. … Why is it a surprise to you that ACMC had trouble making ends meet when it takes an entire year for you to raise $17K per year for Brigada? You are reaching how many people via email regularly? I will attempt to restrain myself from my soap box speech. Everyone thinks that ‘someone else’ will support the ___ ministry. (And, I’m guilty of this also.) Thank you for your continued faithfulness to the Lord, and your efforts to help keep the global Christian community updated with Brigada.” This friend’s note reminded me how vulnerable… how fragile our respective ministries all are. We all need to constantly work hard to keep them fueled. Gulp.

    Another participant from Oregon wrote, “I so appreciated your ‘eulogy’ about ACMC/Caleb Project. I went to my first ACMC conference in the early 90’s. That’s where I first learned about missions, the Perspectives class, met great people like Paul Borthwick and David Mays, and where I learned my first steps in ‘doing missions’. … I began using Caleb Project materials at about the same time. I was able to use them as a resource for our children’s pastor to teach missions to kids. They have been a great resource on unreached peoples materials. … All I learned from ACMC … I’m still using and always will. I remember doing conferences in my area and having people remark over and over how they didn’t know ACMC had such a great network of resources and people. … I too don’t understand what took place, even from the folks that were a part of it but God’s still in control.” Well said. One Caleb Project staffer wrote, “I just want to express my appreciation for the letter in Brigada yesterday. This has been a very difficult time for all of us, made more difficult by frustration and confusion and the speed with which things happened. … Thanks for the note Doug. I appreciate your heart. Thanks for speaking plainly and passionately. We do hope others can learn from our experience.” David Mays, a long-time ACMC consultant wrote, ” Thanks much Doug. You are a great encourager.” He has filed his own take on the ill-fated merger at

    http://www.davidmays.org/i360.html

    (I asked for and received permission from him to share the URL.)

    Throughout these and many other notes, there was one common theme — a flood of memories of all the great services these two incredible organizations had provided down through the years. Another theme: trying to make sense out of their passing. So far, there were few answers.

    However, all is not lost. Bravo to organizations like Pioneers and Team Expansion who are doing their best to provide options for former staff from both agencies. Pioneers, in particular, is trying to create a semi-autonomous working unit that would pick up employees and dreamers from both networks. Watch future Brigada Todays for more news as these and other developments unfold. And above all, keep praying for these precious — and hurting — souls.

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