religion briefs 3/22

Saturday, March 22, 2003

Benton churches make plans for luncheons

BENTON, Mo. -- Churches in the community are again sponsoring Lenten luncheons. The free lunch consisting of a soup and sandwich is served at noon followed by a short devotion. The event is open to people of all faiths and concludes in time for people to return to work by 1 p.m.

The Benton United Methodist Women introduced the luncheons several years ago to keep the community aware about the meaning of Lent, a 40-day period of penance from Ash Wednesday to Easter.

The schedule is as follows: March 26 at Benton United Methodist Church, with a devotion by the Rev. James Seyer; April 2 at St. Denis Catholic Church, with devotion by the Rev. Karen Taylor; April 9 at the Christian Mission, with a devotion by the Rev. William Marshall.

For more information, contact Taylor at (573) 545-3673.

Retirement event planned for Cape Baptist director

The Cape Girardeau Baptist Association is sponsoring a retirement reception from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday for Roy Jones, who has served as director for the Baptist association for 16 years.

The reception will be held at the association office. A basket is available for cards and love offerings.

Rivermen Quartet marks its first anniversary

The Rivermen Quartet, a Southern Gospel singing group from First Baptist Church in Jackson, will mark its first anniversary with a concert.

The concert will be at 7 p.m. March 29 at the Malden Community Center and features the Rivermen Quartet and Legacy Five.

Tickets are $6 in advance and $8 at the door.

First Baptist in Cape plans lock-in for youths

First Baptist Church in Cape Girardeau is sponsoring a youth lock-in March 28 beginning at 7 p.m. The event concludes at 9 a.m. March 29.

The theme is "Teens living pure." The event is for youth in grades 7 to 12.

Central High School basketball coach Derek McCord will speak.

Pastor with cerebral palsy to speak in Scott City

Cliff Clark will speak during services Sunday and Monday at Father's Arms Fellowship at Scott City.

Clark will lead worship at 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. Sunday and at 7 p.m. Monday.

He was born with cerebral palsy but doesn't let the disability affect his ministry.

For more information, call 264-2105.

Catholic youths prepare to attend conference

Several area Catholic parishes will send youth delegations to the Catholic Youth Conference March 28 to 30 at the West Plains Civic Center in West Plains, Mo.

Organizers expect 500 youths and chaperones to attend. The youths will represent parishes in 39 counties in southern Missouri.

Keynote speakers for the event are Anna Scally and Vicky Shepp. Scally is president of Cornerstone Media Inc. and is a columnist for "Top Music Countdown" and host of the radio show "Burning Issues." Shepp has 20 years of training and teaching experience and has helped work with youths in the United States and at World Youth Day in Toronto.

The participants also will help in service projects aiding the city of West Plains, churches in the area and other outreach centers. The event opens with a prayer service March 28 and concludes at noon with a Mass celebration.

N. Korea rejects U.S. over religious freedom issue

SEOUL, South Korea -- North Korea rejected U.S. concern about religious freedom in the communist country, calling American criticism a slur campaign. In an annual report March 5, the U.S. State Department named North Korea as a country of concern for religious persecution, along with China, Iran, Iraq, Myanmar and Sudan. The North Korean foreign news outlet KCNA said that U.S. censure was meant to "stifle and isolate."

-- From staff, wire reports

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