Briefs: AVA, Disabilities and Inclusiveness

Christianity Today Article Includes AVA

CHICAGO, IL (December 15, 2011) – A story posted on the Christianity Today blog “Her.meneutics” addresses the issue of domestic violence and includes comments by two people connected with the Department of Women Ministry’s Advocacy for Victims of Abuse (AVA) ministry.

Yvonne DeVaughn, AVA’s national coordinator, and another one of the ministry’s advocates provide their insights in the article, “But He Never Hit Me: A Christian Primer on Emotional Abuse.”

DeVaughn says that domestic abuse is the result of deep-seated issues. “The common denominator is that it’s about having power and control over another human being,” she says. “It’s not about anger management – often you see that the person can manage that anger when they’re in social situations.”

A woman named Deb, now an advocate with the ministry, tells her story of abuse and how she has found healing.

Click here to read the full article.

Disability Ministries Develops Logo Focusing on Inclusion

CHICAGO, IL (December 15, 2012) – The Covenant Disability Ministries Committee has a adopted a new logo that “visually articulates that all are welcome in the body of Christ, all are needed because we all have something to bring, and we can all learn from each other,” says Millie Lungren, a committee member.

It also is an expression of this passage of scripture: But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. As it is, there are many parts, but one body. The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!” On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable. I Corinthians 12:18, 20-22 (TNIV)

“Even as we embrace this text as a foundation for our logo, some people have said that families with special needs are one of the largest unreached people groups,” says Lungren. “Many families do not attend church because there is no ministry available to them. As a result, we need to be proactive and to plan with intention so that we’re both willing and prepared to welcome everyone, even before a family attends for the first time.”

The committee is a ministry of the Department of Christian Formation and is comprised of members involved in serving special needs individuals and their families. Their goal is to help network, educate and resource churches and the Covenant as a whole so that persons with disabilities and their families are effectively served and fully included in the life and ministries of the Covenant and their local communities.

For those attending the Covenant Midwinter Conference in February, the Christian Formation Forum on Wednesday of that week will focus on disability ministries.

Click here to read a previous Covenant News Service on how churches are seeking to serve families with special needs.

NPU Students Among First to Use New Spectrometer

CHICAGO (December 15, 2011) – Students in the North Park University chemistry program will be among the first in the nation to use a “revolutionary piece of equipment” known as the miniature Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectrometer.

The manufacturer, picoSpin, won a 2011 Edison Award for the shoe-box sized spectrometer. The award honors innovation.

Similar to Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) used in medicine, an NMR spectrometer can help a user identify molecules in a solution by providing a “spectrum” or picture in graph form. “This is a central instrument to the field of chemistry,” said Dr. Jonathan Rienstra-Kiracofe, professor of chemistry and department chair.

The $19,000 price tag is “perfect” for the university’s chemistry program, Rienstra-Kiracofe said. The cost is far less than much larger NMR instruments that can exceed $200,000 in cost.

A grant from the Max Goldenberg Foundation made the purchase possible.

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