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Reach the Beach

Aug 21 2011

Last night we returned home from Revere, Mass. where we were part of a city-wide outreach called "Reach the Beach".  Many local churches work together to do street evangelism through performing arts and witnessing.  We did 10 shows in four days!  It was a huge blessing to work alongside our worship team from our home church in Bridgton, Maine on several of those days.  Revere Beach is the oldest public beach in the USA, and there is a mix of virtually every ethnic group on earth there on any given day.  Also, there is a large homeless population that live near the beach due to the availability of public restrooms and proximity to Mass. General Hospital.

We are told that between 14 and 16 people that we know of came to a saving relationship with Jesus on the beach last week.  Four of those conversions led immediately into the person commiting themselves into detox programs.  Here are some of my memories from the week of Reach the Beach:

1)  A HUGE thunderstorm that blew through on Thursday afternoon.  These was horizontal wind, dime size hail, and lightning strikes right nearby.  We huddled in the pavilion to keep each other as dry as possible, and to comfort each other.

2)  For several days, Rose befriended a Muslim family: a mom and two young daughters.  She especially loved holding the two year old little girl... I'll have pictures up in our gallery soon.  Apparently, the woman has been visiting a local church, not for services, but for the fellowship time afterwards.  Rose was a wonderful example of the love of Christ to the whole family.  By the end of the week, she was almost like a mother's helper!

3)  Teens from Mass. and our teenaged daughters making lasting friendships, and renewing friendships from last summer's RTB.

4)  Sky, a homeless woman who loved to sing with our worship team, being given a new set of clothes from RTB co-organizer, Carol.

5)  Eddie, a homeless man we met last year, who was always drunk, even when we would arrive at the beach at 9:00 AM.  This year, he is saved, sober and off of drugs for 10 months now.  He was a RTB volunteer, lives with friends, and is working on getting into a follow-up program at the Boston YMCA.  He worked tirelessly, especially reaching out to the street people whom he shared the streets with just a year ago.

6)  Sue going with Carol to feed the homeless on Saturday, and coming back so blessed.

It was a great week, and God moved in very big ways.  We loved every minute of it!

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The presentation was fun and encouraging... The gospel message was clear and encouraging. I purchased your book and just finished it. Your scope is broad and again encouraging. May God continue to bless your ministry. I will encourage others to read your book. -Parishioner of a local church

"Hey, I  wanted to say that was a great message in chapel today! It touched something:) thanks for doing it!" -High School Student  

"We are so grateful that you brought your amazing ministry back to our church this year... The Gospel message you bring applies to all!  It is such a positive, valuable work that you do."  -Coordinator of Christian Ed. UCC Church

"There's no questioning it. This is powerful stuff. It's extremely touching at times, never less than entertaining, and I see a lot of sincere love for Jesus in you guys."  -Dwight Lilies, song writer

The Lord has given you a wonderful window through which to present the Gospel!   - Field Director of Alliance Missions to Paraguay

"What a wonderful ministry to both children and adults.  In past years it has been a struggle to arrange programing that would hold the attention of all ages, but also challenge each heart with God's gift of Salvation.  Thank you for sharing your ministry."  -Sunday School Sup't.

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