Category Archives: Religion

Amanda Starves, So Others Don’t Have To

You may remember last year, my church youth group participated in the 30 Hour Famine to raise money for those in need. We’re doing it again this year, and our oldest girl, Amanda, is now old enough to be in youth group. I told her she could ask the people that read my blog if they’d like to donate, but she had to do it herself. So here she is:

To donate to Amanda online, follow this link. The famine is this weekend, so if you want to pledge but can’t actually donate for a few weeks — please just drop me an email letting me know your intent so we can get a total amount raised for the weekend.

Thanks for watching, this fundraiser is really powerful for the teens because for American teenagers 30 hours is a long time to go without food. For more details on the famine, check out that link at the beginning of this post to last year’s.

I Got Nothin’

I’m tired. It’s been a long week.

One funny story (well, funny for me):

I was talking with my friend Josh this evening, and he commented that Easter week is always really busy and tiring. He’s a pastor, so I’m sure that’s the case. My response was, “Yeah, it was pretty tough on Jesus too…”

To which we both laughed. It was probably blasphemous, but still, funny. 🙂

30 Hours Later…

Boy am I tired. This update won’t be as elaborate as I planned, because I need to get some rest — but here’s the skinny:

* We had 27 kids attend the 30 Hour Famine
* Our original goal was to collect $360 (This feeds a child for a year)
* We raised over $3000. w00t!
* Did I mention I’m tired?

…also, leaving on a plane at 6:10AM tomorrow morning. Details later, iffen I can get some rest!

30 Hour Famine

behungrytitlec.pngOn March 14th & 15th, our church youth group (Donna and I are the leaders) is doing a fund raiser to help feed starving kids. It’s a 30 hour hunger strike type deal, and the kids are gaining sponsorship to send money to feed some of the 29,000 kids that die every day. This is a pretty nifty idea, and significant for a couple reasons:

  • The teens are actually quite excited about this. Teens excited about something worthwhile is generally considered a good thing.
  • Our church, which is still shaking off the shackles of legalism, separatism, extreme fundamentalism, and several other funky isms, is stepping a bit out of their comfort zone. I think this is a very good thing, not only because of the actual good the funds will do — but because I think it’s a healthy thing for our church. Yay for teenagers making a difference on several levels. 🙂
  • World Vision seems to be on the up and up. Here is the Better Business Bureau’s review of the establishment. (Also, here is another link, from Janiece, that shows info on World Vision. Her link has prettier graphs. 🙂 ) I don’t claim to be an expert, but I haven’t found anything that stinks.
  • Feeding hungry kids. Yeah, I’m good with that.

Just to be clear, World Vision is a Christian organization. Their humanitarian efforts seem to be quite legitimate, however. While I’m certain their Christianity isn’t made a secret — it does appear that actual humanitarianism is their goal. By that I mean, I don’t think the group forces (or attempts to coerce) people to adopt their views before feeding them. If anyone knows different, please tell me, because that would be messed up.

I’m not soliciting funds from my readers, mainly because that’s just not how I roll. I also realize this is a cause that might not fit into the “where I want my money to go” category for many of my readers, because it’s a Christian group. I get that, and I really don’t want anyone to give money to something they’re not comfortable with so as not to offend me. Really, I’m not offended.

Here’s what I would ask though: If you think teenagers raising money to help feed starving kids is a noble and worthwhile “thing” — please drop an encouraging comment. Not eating for 30 hours is going to be tough on them, and I want to have some encouragement ammunition. I’ll be sure to read any encouraging comments to them.

Lastly, if you really do want to send our group money, I won’t say no. I mean, I don’t want to roll that way either. 😉 Our goal as a group is to get $360 in sponsorship, because that will feed one child for a year. Yes, it seems like a low goal — but we’ve never done ANYTHING like this before, so we would rather far exceed our goal than to fall short. You know, morale and all… If you want to send something other than comments, just drop me an email and I’ll get you my address. My email address is shawn shift-2 brainofshawn dot com. (uh, shift-2 being the @ symbol)

Thanks for reading!

UPDATE: Janiece brings up an interesting point in the comments. We are consulting the local doctor’s office in order to make sure we are properly addressing health concerns. I’m not sure if we will have a medical professional there the entire time, but we will make sure to follow the guidelines the doctors give us. Plus, it’s a small town, and we can call the doctor at home in pretty short order. We do have juice and water available at all times, and at least one of our participants is diabetic, so will be eating as appropriate, but still participating. (We also don’t penalize the kids if they can’t make the whole 30 hours, although they will have to offer a refund to those folks that sponsored them individually for the whole 30 hours.)

Merry Christmas

Here’s a 1:45 snippet of the culmination of 2 months worth of preparation. My wife was the director of the children’s Christmas musical at our church this year, and tonight was the performance. We’re not sure what we’re going to do with ourselves now that there won’t be 3 practices a week, with 3 times that this past week. 🙂

Our youngest daughter, Lizzie, has her very first solo ever at about the 34 second mark. She’s 6 years old, and we are so proud. In fact, all 3 of our kids had solos (not just because my wife was the director!), and they all did wonderful. Lizzie gets the spotlight on Daddy’s blog, however, because it’s her first.

I’m so happy the musical is over! That’s not to say it wasn’t wonderful, but to get back to the regular amount of holiday stress will be quite a relief. 🙂