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Parents of septuplets to speak at Sunday School luncheon

Fri, 16 Feb 2007 - 2:08 PM CST

"Train Up a Child," is this year's theme for the General Council Christian Education and Sunday School Luncheon. Highlighting the theme will be special guest speakers Kenneth and Bobbi McCaughey, parents of the first surviving healthy septuplets in recorded history.

With eight children (septuplets plus an older sibling), the McCaugheys (pronounced "McCoys") have learned to rely on God to meet their family's needs, and when asked about their challenges, the McCaugheys are quick to give God credit for their success.

"Their testimony as Christian believers is such an amazing and strong story," says Wes Bartel, director of the Assemblies of God national Sunday School Department. Bartel recalls seeing the media coverage after the septuplets birth and being amazed by the way the McCaugheys testified of God's grace, committing to raise their children in such a way that would glorify God.

The McCaugheys have been living in the media spotlight since the birth of their septuplets in November 1997. This extraordinary event has allowed the McCaugheys to publicly attest to God's faithfulness, making headlines in media such as "Newsweek," "LIFE Magazine" and "CNN.com" and appearances on "Dateline NBC," and "Oprah."

Together the McCaugheys have written a book entitled "Seven from Heaven," which appeared on the New York Times Bestseller list, and Bobbi has also written a second book, "Celebrating the Wonders of Motherhood."

This year's Christian Education and Sunday School Luncheon will also honor the 2007 National Sunday School Teacher of the Year Carol McKernan from Evangel Assembly in Evart, Michigan.

The luncheon will be held in the Wabash Ballroom of the Indiana Convention Center on Thursday, August 9, from 12-1:30 p.m. Tickets are $25 and are available on the General Council order form.

To register for General Council or for event tickets, see http://ag.org/. More information about Sunday School can be found at http://sundayschool.ag.org/.


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"Train Up a Child," is this year's theme for the General Council Christian Education and Sunday School Luncheon. Highlighting the theme will be special guest speakers Kenneth and Bobbi McCaughey, parents of the first surviving healthy septuplets in recorded history.

With eight children (septuplets plus an older sibling), the McCaugheys (pronounced "McCoys") have learned to rely on God to meet their family's needs, and when asked about their challenges, the McCaugheys are quick to give God credit for their success.

"Their testimony as Christian believers is such an amazing and strong story," says Wes Bartel, director of the Assemblies of God national Sunday School Department. Bartel recalls seeing the media coverage after the septuplets birth and being amazed by the way the McCaugheys testified of God's grace, committing to raise their children in such a way that would glorify God.

The McCaugheys have been living in the media spotlight since the birth of their septuplets in November 1997. This extraordinary event has allowed the McCaugheys to publicly attest to God's faithfulness, making headlines in media such as "Newsweek," "LIFE Magazine" and "CNN.com" and appearances on "Dateline NBC," and "Oprah."

Together the McCaugheys have written a book entitled "Seven from Heaven," which appeared on the New York Times Bestseller list, and Bobbi has also written a second book, "Celebrating the Wonders of Motherhood."

This year's Christian Education and Sunday School Luncheon will also honor the 2007 National Sunday School Teacher of the Year Carol McKernan from Evangel Assembly in Evart, Michigan.

The luncheon will be held in the Wabash Ballroom of the Indiana Convention Center on Thursday, August 9, from 12-1:30 p.m. Tickets are $25 and are available on the General Council order form.

To register for General Council or for event tickets, see http://ag.org/. More information about Sunday School can be found at http://sundayschool.ag.org/.


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Church Dedicates Alzheimer's Facility

Thu, 20 Nov 2014 - 9:53 AM CST

Memory Lane
Van Buren First Assembly of God's Memory Lane Alzheimer's Special Care Unit is considered the finest Alzheimer's facility in Arkansas and one of the best in the nation.

Many Assemblies of God churches care for the needy through food pantries, clothing banks, holiday meals and similar compassion ministries. But Van Buren (Arkansas) First Assembly of God may be the very first AG church to not only offer a retirement center for seniors, but now a fully-staffed care unit for individuals who have Alzheimer's or dementia.

The new $5 million, 34,000 square-foot Memory Lane Alzheimer's Special Care Unit, dedicated on November 13, was recently completed through the donation of a gift of $5 million given anonymously last November. The care unit is an addition to the already existing 60,000-square-foot Legacy Heights Retirement Center.

Senior Pastor Bobby Johnson, who has been ministering at the 1,100-member church for the past 34 years, says that in 2007 the church opened the Legacy Heights Retirement Center, offering 55 units for retirees.

Having converted a wing of the center into an Alzheimer's care unit in 2009, Johnson says at first the church struggled as the economy crash at that time took its toll. "But three years ago, a foundation offered us a $1 million grant, if we could match it," Johnson says. "We matched almost all of it and that helped us recover."

Memory Lane pictures
Much of the decor in Memory Lanes is designed to help those with Alzheimer's use their memories.

Apparently liking what Johnson and Van Buren First Assembly were doing, the same foundation came back to them this past November and offered the grant money to build a state-of-the-art Alzheimer's care facility.

AG General Treasurer Doug Clay spoke at the dedication of the new unit. "Thank you for being a wonderful and biblical example of excellence in ministry to our seniors," Clay said. "There is nothing quite like this . . . praise the Lord!"

When the new facility, which is expected to open by mid-December, is at capacity (40 patients), it will have a staff of 50 to 60 people, including nurses and other professional staff who will provide 24-hour care in private rooms. The facility is also licensed by the state.

"Memory Lane is divided into two mirroring pods of 16,000-square-feet each," Johnson says. "They each have 20 rooms and include a dining room, activities room, a beauty salon, whirlpool, an outdoor walking track within the confines of each pod, and between the pods is a safe room for residents of Legacy Heights and Memory Lane."

Clay observed that one out of eight Americans are now age 65 or older, with more than 5,500 Americans turning 65 every day. "As the percentage of older people in the population increases, problems, attitudes, responsibilities, and care related to the aging become matters of increasing concern," Clay said.

Pastor Bobby Johnson
Pastor Bobby Johnson

Johnson agrees with Clay's assessment. "Statistics say 1 out of 2 people who are 85 will contract this disease — a disease where there are no survivors."

According to what state officials have already communicated to Johnson, the new Alzheimer's facility is the best in the state and is one of the best in the nation.

"The difference is, this facility was built strictly for Alzheimer's patients — it's not an older building converted to house Alzheimer's patients," Johnson explains. "For example, our large outdoor walking track is secure, pictures and decorations are from the 1930s, 40s and 50s, which will help with memory, and each patient's door will have pictures of their family members on it."

What's more, Johnson says, those residents living at Legacy Heights and the patients soon to be a part of Memory Lane will continue to have the opportunities to hear the gospel message, through visitation of retired AG ministers and live-streaming of all church services.

And perhaps Clay summed the church's efforts up best when he said during the dedication, "Thank you for addressing this concern with care, quality and excellence."

For more information about Legacy Heights or Memory Lane, contact Van Buren First AG at info@vbfirst.com.

 

 

Keywords: AG churches
Authors: Dan Van Veen

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