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Welcome to the September 2001 Family Worship newsletter
Previous newsletters are available on the website archives at
FW Site stats
Recent site additions
Family Worship In Action
Scripture spot - Malachi 4
With relentless "Humour spots" everywhere
FW Site Stats
This is the first newsletter for a couple of months after a Summer
break. Subscribers now total over 2,100 - a very warm welcome to new
The UK has only one Christian radio station which broadcasts
terrestrially (ie. over the airwaves, rather than by satellite or cable)
- Premier Radio, broadcasting mainly to London and the South-East of the
UK, as well as further afield by satellite and over the Internet.
I was invited recently to be interviewed live on Premier about Family
Worship, and a recording of the interview is now available online at
For new friends and subscribers, the interview is a good introduction to
the vision behind Family Worship Resources, and for old friends, it will
provide the entertainment value of hearing how I coped with a number of
questions that I had no warning they were going to ask! (The challenge
is, can you spot which ones they were?)
Recent site additions
With Christmas only 15 weeks or so away (sorry if you weren't thinking
about it yet), there is a new song that you might like to check out from
FW4, written especially for use at Christmas - "Peace Child". You can
check it out free at http://www.mp3.com/familyworship and the backing
track will also be available free very shortly at
Sheet music is also available free at
http://members.sibeliusmusic.com/familyworship (if you haven't tried
Sibelius Music yet, check it out - it promises to do for printed music
what MP3 and RealAudio have done for audio)
Talking of Christmas, the Easter drama scripts featured on the site
proved to be popular, and we are delighted that Vicky Best has offered
Family Worship the script for her excellent "Virtual Nativity" play,
which takes the traditional story and gives it a modern twist,
speculating what it would have been like if the main characters had had
access to email and the Internet! Ideal in an evangelistic context, or
for a fresh way of dramatising the nativity in your Christmas service.
The script will be available shortly on the site, so keep an eye on the
front page. It will be royalty-free, and any donations in lieu of a
royalty can be made to Tear Fund (thanks Vicky).
If you know of other good free drama resources, do let us know so we can
link to them.
I'm not saying that the customer service in my bank has got worse, but
when I went in the other day and asked the clerk to check my balance -
she leant over the counter and gave me a push!
"Family Worship In Action"
This is the provisional title for a video release that we are just
starting to plan for now. Many of the FW songs have actions or dances to
them, and we are often asked if we have a video available. The plan is
to take around 10 songs, film the actions being demonstrated by
children, teenagers and adults, and intersperse the songs with interview
clips with people of different ages about what worship means to them.
As well as releasing the video in UK and US formats, some of the clips
will be put on the website. Provisional release will be sometime in the
first half of 2002 - watch this space...
The little boy wasn't getting good marks in school. One day he spoke to
He looked him straight in the eye and said, "I don't want to scare you,
but my Daddy says if I don't get better grades somebody is going to get
In the UK, many Christians spend a week or two of their holiday time
each year at various Christian event, conferences and camps. My own
church, Ichthus Christian Fellowship, puts on a small event each Summer,
"Revive!", in the beautiful grounds of Ashburnham Place in East Sussex,
on the South coast of England, where this year around 2,000 people
gathered for a week of worship, teaching, fun, encouragement and
vision-building. Aside from torrential rain on the first day, which was
a challenge for everyone putting up tents, the sun shone all week and it
was a wonderful time.
We were honoured to have Jackie Pullinger-To visit with some friends
from Hong Kong. Jackie, originally from the UK, has had a truly
remarkable ministry in Hong Kong, and challenged especially the children
and youth to get a passion and vision for World Mission. I was leading
the programme for the 6-10's, and at one point, we asked all of the
children who felt that God was calling them to a particular nation to
stand on that nation on a giant world map on the floor. Probably around
100 children responded, and even allowing for the "me-too" nature of
children of that age, it was an astonishing response - we'll find out in
the next couple of decades how many take up the calling!
Also visiting to speak and minister was Mike Bickle
(http://www.fotb.com), from Kansas City. Author of "Passion for Jesus",
a book which had a very strong impact on me a few years ago, I was keen
to hear him speak, but running the children's programme meant that I
wasn't sure if I would get the chance. However, if actions speak louder
than words, then I was astonished to see him for the first time, not
speaking from the platform, but rather serving food to the workers in
the staff meal tent. He had heard that the kitchen was short of staff,
so had rolled up his sleeves and got stuck in before speaking that
I'm sure Mike wouldn't want any kind of mention of this, let alone in an
email newsletter to over 2,000 people around the world, but it made such
an impression on me. Jesus set an example of servant hood by washing the
disciples feet, so it shouldn't surprise me that an international
speaker and minister should have quietly got on serving food, but
surprise me it did. For all the impact that his book and teaching have
had, one simple action challenged and ministered to me far more deeply,
and made me resolve to try to follow Jesus' example a little more
For the first time in several years, there were as many 11-16 year old's
on the camp as there were 6-10's, which was a major encouragement to us.
The church in the UK has statistically been in decline over the past
several decades, and it is youth and young adults that have mostly been
leaving. Everything that we are doing with Family Worship Resources is
with the aim of trying to stem the tide, and then see it reversed so
that children and youth start to pour back in to the church. It was
thrilling through the week to see young children worshipping with a
passion, and to hear reports of teenagers fired up and enthusiastic to
win their own generation for Christ.
A Sunday school teacher asked the children just before she dismissed
them to go to church, "And why is it necessary to be quiet in church?"
Annie replied, "Because people are sleeping?"
A husband was standing on the bathroom scale, pulling in his stomach.
His wife remarked, "I don't think that is going to help much, darling"
"Sure it does," he said. "How else can I see the numbers?"
This month, Malachi 4:5-6
"See I will send you the prophet Elijah before that great and terrible
day of the Lord comes. He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their
children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers, or else I
will come and strike the land with a curse" (copyright, NIV)
These 2 verses, the very last in the Old Testament, have been key verses
to the vision behind Family Worship Resources, and the song "We will
turn the hearts of the fathers" on our very first recording is based on
In the world, the generations tend to polarize - people prefer to spend
time with their peer groups, and each new generation that comes along
has its own "rebellion" against the generations of its parents and
grandparents, which is often most apparent by the style of music that
the new generations choose to identify with. In the Kingdom of God,
however, we are called to unity: unity between nations, denominations -
The verses imply that a pre-condition to Revival is unity between
fathers (which is generic for all parents) and their children, and if we
want to avoid our land being cursed, we need the heart and message of
Elijah, which was also the heart and message of John the Baptist, to
"prepare the way of the Lord", for all ages.
In the worship activities in our churches, therefore, it is not enough
to have great adult times of worship, and great youth worship, and great
children's worship - we need to also learn how to worship together as
the whole family of God. How else can we demonstrate to the world that
it is possible to have unity and love between the generations, if we can
only effectively express our love for God when separated into our peer
I sometimes speculate on what age we will be when we get to heaven (any
theologians out there who can explain it to me?!) One thing is certain,
however, that in heaven we will worship with one heart and voice, and
all of the divides that exist in the world today - racial,
denominational, national, and age, will mean nothing, so we should get
some practise in now to be ready for heaven!
NASA wanted to find a writing implement that could be used in space.
It took dozens of engineers and millions of dollars to finally invent a
space pen. The pen could write in zero gravity and the ink would still
flow at any angle. Amazing.
Does make you wonder, though, why they didn't just give the astronauts
The new worship site from Ichthus Christian Fellowship has started to
feature online audio files of teaching related to worship, including
teaching from Matt Redman and Graham Kendrick.
The Source volume 2 is out now - details at
http://www.kevinmayhewltd.com, and in the US from
http://www.riveroflifecbs.com (who also distribute Family Worship
Resources online for the US and Canada)
If you have a website that you would like us to cover in future
newsletters, please email
Don't forget that Family Worship, as well as many other "grass roots
level" ministries are featured in the Christian sections of mp3.com
Check out the new, free FW Webmail - email@example.com -
This newsletter is written by Mike Burn and is published by Family
Worship Resources, part of Ichthus Christian Fellowship, London, UK.
Copyright 2001, Mike Burn.
Inclusion of links and quotations does not imply full endorsement of the
contents. The newsletter may be forwarded or reproduced in full or in
part providing that the source is acknowledged.
To subscribe, send a blank email to
Send comments or queries, or suggested articles or links for inclusion
in future newsletters to
Thanks for reading, and if you've made it this far, or even if you just
skipped to the end before hitting delete, blessings to you in Jesus'
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