Originally created 04/08/00

Faith Digest



Celebrity softball

The Celebrity Gospel Softball Team will be part of a family-centered event from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. today at May Park, 622 Fourth St..

Proceeds from the event, sponsored by In My Father's House and The Rise newspaper, will benefit "Project Go" Stop the Violence: Save Our Families From Destruction.

The Rev. Larry Fryer will speak during workshops on encouragement and enhancement from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., said the Rev. Vonghett Oatis, an organizer. She is assistant pastor of Pleasant Grove Baptist Church in Hephzibah.

Celebrity players will take to the softball diamond from 2 to 6 p.m.

The Gospel Originals and Disciples for Christ will join the Glorious Kings and other groups for a concert from 7 to 10 p.m.

Hot dogs and soda will be available at concessions.

For information, call 737-2675.

Applying skills

To earn a paycheck, people must be willing and able to apply their skills, and churches can help them do that, says an expert in Third World development.

Dr. Brian Fikkert, a consultant to such organizations as the World Bank and the United States Agency for International Development, will lead a workshop Friday linking business and job creation in disadvantaged communities with spiritual renewal.

The workshop for churches, businesses and missionaries will be at Trinity Outreach Mission, 818 Eighth St., from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Workshop concepts will be put to practical use in a quick-lube clinic from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday, April 15.

Dr. Fikkert is an associate professor of economics and director of the Chalmers Center at Covenant College, Lookout Mountain, Ga. He has contributed to several books and has published articles in leading academic journals.

For information, call 722-8693.

Bicentennial celebration

Silver Run Baptist Church, 5406 U.S. Highway 221, four miles south of Harlem, will hold an Old-Fashion Day as part of its bicentennial at 11 a.m. Sunday. The congregation will have dinner on the grounds after the service.

The Rev. Mason Davis and Dr. James Walton "Smokey" Howard Sr. will be the featured speakers. Dr. Howard is the grandson of the Rev. Willis J. Howard, who was pastor from 1900 to 1940.

Leadership luncheon

Ron Johnson, a former gang member who graduated from Columbia University in New York, will speak at a leadership luncheon at North Augusta Community Center, 400 East Buena Vista Ave., from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday.

His appearance is sponsored by Heritage Community Services. For information, call 722-7872.

Musical offerings

Recording artists BLEACH, Relient K and PAX217 will perform Christian alternative music for all ages at Cafe Icthus at the New Hope Worship Center, 715 Old Belair Road, Grovetown, at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Tickets are $6. For information, call 868-6410.

Looking at media

CNN anchor Judy Woodruff, a native of Augusta, will present An Insider's View of the Media: My Best Insight and Favorite Stories at St. Paul's Episcopal Church, at 7 p.m. May 14.

A reception will follow at the Augusta Museum of History, 560 Reynolds St.

Tickets are $25. Proceeds will benefit the Children's Ministries Center. For information, call 724-2485.

Russian religion

Religious belief and practices are emerging in Russia and spreading among people born after 1970, University of Chicago sociologist Andrew Greeley told a religion conference at England's Oxford University.

Belief in God, Orthodox affiliation, prayer, worship attendance, religious conversion and "turning point" religious experiences increased significantly, according to a 1998 study by the International Social Surveys Program, whose findings were just announced.

A 1991 study had revealed that 45 percent of the people surveyed said they believed in God; by 1998, that number had jumped to 60 percent. In 1991, 30 percent identified themselves as Orthodox, compared to 58 percent in 1998.

"In a remarkably brief period of time, Russia has become one of the most God-believing countries in Europe," said the Rev. Greeley, a Roman Catholic priest. "Perhaps we were naive ... to expect that a thousand-year heritage would wither away in 70 years of inept socialist oppression."

-- From Staff and Wire Reports