New Year Ministry Trifecta (Or, The CMDA Philadelphia January Update)

Winter Conf - group photo

Our 2015 CMDA Northeast Winter Conference Group!

Recently, we’ve been sending out monthly updates through MailChimp so that our support team can save a click or two.  In retrospect, though, I’m realizing that not using our website might make it seem like we’re not up to anything.  This would be – in the words of The Office character Dwight Schrute – ‘false’.  We may send out future updates in both places (here and MailChimp) to give you the best of both worlds.

Here, then, are some recent happenings since our last update in December.

Men’s Night

One of my (Bryan) passions is raising up men who are difference-makers.  Men who will change the world for Christ and make a mark for him wherever they go.

To that end, in early January we held our annual men’s night at ‘The Shabazz’, a home where 6 guys training for healthcare are living together.  (Although it sounds like a hookah bar, the home takes it name from Shabazz Napier, one of the guys’ favorite basketball players).

As the New Year rolled around, our topic was how to make – and actually follow through on – goals that change us and the world around us for Christ.  Toward the end of our time, I walked the guys through exactly how to do it and gave them the chance to set a goal right there.  Not to mention all the wings we consumed and fun we had.  One of the guys even suggested having another before this one finished.

Women’s Night

The very next evening, Dr Marcie Macolino joined Sharon in hosting our annual women’s night. The topic – how to balance life in healthcare with the rest of life – is always one at the forefront of everyone’s mind.  Although an exhaustive, once-for-all solution was not achieved, God gave the women a great discussion and tremendous food and fellowship.

CMDA Northeast Winter Conference

All of us want to make an impact for God’s Kingdom right where we are, everyday.  Have you ever felt, though, that you can’t?  Or aren’t?  I know I feel like this all the time.  We get overwhelmed, feel ordinary, and forget that God is at work.  And become isolated.

Our Annual Philly Area Denny's Run at Winter Conference!

Our Annual Philly Area Denny’s Run at Winter Conference!

These are the very things that our healthcare students and professionals are struggling with every day, and why we hold our annual CMDA Northeast Winter Conference.  This year, our theme was ‘The Extraordinary Life Of An Ordinary Christian in Healthcare: Lessons & Stories From The Field’.  We had a great turnout, with roughly 180 in attendance.  (In fact, we had to close registration early).

Without a doubt, this was the best Winter Conference I can remember, largely because our speakers were so transparent about their failings, yet pointed us to God’s work in and through them.  As we closed the conference on Sunday with a worship service and communion, there was a tremendous sense of God’s presence.  And, best of all, one of our dental students put her faith in Christ for the very first time.

Sharon and I were privileged to play a role in planning the conference, helping with logistics there, and, many meaningful conversations with the students.

In a way, you – our support team – were there, too.  Your support allowed us to represent you and your prayers were the fuel behind everything God did through us.  From the bottom of our hearts, we thank you.

With Christ’s love,

Bryan & Sharon

Please join us in these matters of prayer and praise:

  • praise for several fantastic events: our men’s and women’s nights, as well as Winter Conference.  Please pray that everyone would apply what God showed them!
  • I (Bryan) give God praise for Sharon.  She did so much for the women’s night and especially Winter Conference.  Everyone was raving about her work and she frees me up to focus on what I do best.  [End of bragging session].
  • Praise God for a solid December financially.  At the same time, our ministry account remains lower than normal at this time of the year, so please pray for me as I will be conducting more personal support appointments.
  • Please pray for these upcoming events – our home bible study brunches (2/7 & 28), focused on the theme of how to discuss faith with your patients, and, a wedding I’m officiating for two of our favorite medical students on Jan. 31st.
  • Finally, pray for our times with our students, the heart of our ministry. We need God to give us wisdom help us help them in their relationship with the Lord, and, impact others.
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