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Trayvon Martin’s family attorney to speak at Memphis COGIC conference

Cogic 600Benjamin Crump, known to many as the attorney that represented the family of Trayvon Martin as they sought justice for his fatal shooting at the hands of George Zimmerman, will keynote The Conference on Family 2014 in Memphis on Friday (Feb. 28th).

Temple Church of God in Christ is hosting the three-day conference that will stretch through Sunday (March 2nd) at the church at 672 South Lauderdale. Attorney Crump will speak at 7 p.m.

The goal of the conference is to bring people together in a common forum to discuss today's problems and challenges of families, including how to deal with juvenile delinquency, aging parents, unwed mothers, and the social and emotional stresses of poverty.

Setting boundaries for healing and helping

LucyShaw-160Dear Lucy: I have a friend who has had back trouble for some 20 years following an accident. She has back pain and has gone to lots of doctors and is overweight from lack of exercise. She has now started exploring alternative therapies that she won't do. The problem is that she is so negative, whiney and mean and has nothing good to say about anything or anybody. I help her out a lot, travel with her and work hard to be her friend and support. But she really doesn't want to be well. She just wants to complain. I hate to desert her but it's making me sick! I am the only one left who caters to her and is there for her. Any ideas. – Pained

Dear Pained: I think this is about both of you. She has set her boundaries for healing and you need to set some boundaries for helping.

About her: Many of us have a low threshold for pain and it's worse when we have to live with it daily. It can make you irritable and short tempered. But there are lots of things out there for pain beyond drugs.

New Direction broadens Pinkout Sunday focus

PastorKarren-600While the "pink" in PinkOUT Sunday at New Direction Christian Church has long emphasized Breast Cancer awareness, this year worshippers were encouraged to get "out" of unhealthy relationships as the church recognized both breast cancer and domestic violence awareness in one powerful service.

Worshippers were encouraged to wear pink and/or purple to show their support. All attendees received abuse hotline information, self-examination info about breast cancer and access to counselors who were on-hand to assist during service in private rooms.

Deacon uses ‘Gifted Hands’ to help boys

30giftedhands-400At The New Olivet Baptist Church, several boys, ages 10 to 18, recently viewed "Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story" and then answered questions and wrote an essay about the movie.

Several of the top scorers were rewarded with a trip to Union University in Jackson, Tenn. to hear Dr. Carson speak at a banquet on Oct. 22nd.

Deacon Herman Draine Jr. coordinated the effort for the youth.

New CD: Temple of Deliverance Women’s Choir, Gospel stars

TOD-CD-Cover-500Recently, some of the leading ladies in gospel music came together for a power-packed live CD recording at the Temple of Deliverance COGIC, the historic Memphis church founded by the late Bishop G.E. Patterson as Bountiful Blessings Church in 1975.

Aside from being a superior preacher, Bishop Patterson was also known for his spirited traditional gospel recordings of standards such as "My Record Will Be There" and "Inside the Gate." His successor, Superintendent Milton R. Hawkins, is carrying on the musical legacy by partnering with Habakkuk Music to release a new CD entitled, "Pastor Milton R. Hawkins Presents Live In The Sanctuary." The CD features the church's 200-plus voice Temple of Deliverance Church of God in Christ Women's Choir.

The twelve song CD hits stores on Nov. 5th, with the album available at a discounted price of $7.99 on iTunes pre-order prior to the release date.

The Rev. Rufus Smith next up at Hope Church

Rev RufusSmith-200The largest church in Memphis – and the second largest Presbyterian Church in the country – has announced a new senior pastor. But he's no stranger to the church.

Hope Church has named the Rev. Rufus Smith IV, its current senior associate pastor, to lead the church. Current Senior Pastor Dr. R. Craig Strickland will maintain a very active and visible role within the church in his new position as founding pastor.

Smith will be installed into his new role the weekend of Nov. 16-17.

Speaking the language of Spirit

LucyShaw-160LIVING THE LIFE I LOVE: Dear Lucy: Things have really been mixed up for me lately. I have done some things to the people I love. I have tried to explain to them. But I just can't find the right words. They are all mad at me and I want their understanding and forgiveness. It's like I am speaking a foreign language. I'm all talked out and can't listen to them beat up on me any more.

Dear "all talked out": It really is hard sometimes to explain to yourself and others the reasons for your actions, pain or transgression. Often it seems impossible. And friends and family can be just as confused and hurt as we are. In their confusion they try to make sense of it in ways that just bring more hurt and confusion. Next thing you know, everybody is wallowing in guilt, hurt, shame and guilt.

What to do when the question feels nosey

LucyShaw-160LIVING THE LIFE I LOVE: Dear Lucy: I was at a professional party recently and met up with an acquaintance who has just gotten a man in her life and told me all about him and how happy she was. She quizzed me about my love life and my guy wanting and expecting me to tell her as much as she told me. She was downright insisting that I give her details about who he is, how we met, what kind of work he does. I never asked her these questions. I don't get it. She caught me off guard and I tried to answer her only to be mad at myself later. How do you handle that? – Ticked Off

Dear Ticked Off:

That is routine middle class drama. Some people have homegrown manners and ask how you are doing. Others ask what, when, why, how, where you are doing. Some ask out of profound and heartfelt interest in your welfare and happiness. Others ask because they are nosey and want to be sure you have not gotten ahead of them.