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Published: Friday, 10/15/2010

Faith Notes: 'Jesus Guy' movie marches onto DVD

Filmmaker Sean Tracey documented some of Mr. Joseph's journey in The Jesus Guy, a film that will be released Tuesday on DVD.

As a press release states, the film "allows us to walk in The Jesus Guy's steps as he encounters both skeptics and believers, changing them … for better, for worse, forever."

The DVD, $20 including shipping and handling, is available online at thejesusguy.com or by calling 800-888-0486, ext. 115.

CONTROVERSY over plans to build an Islamic community center near Ground Zero in New York City and a mosque in Murfreesboro, Tenn., have generated waves of media coverage.

But Manhattan and Tennessee are just two of 35 places in the United States where proposed mosques have been met with community resistance over the last two years.

The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life has posted an online interactive map with background information, culled from news reports, on the 35 U.S. mosques that drew opposition.

Ohio has one listing, in which the Sugarcreek Township Board of Zoning Appeals in Greene County rejected building plans submitted by the Islamic Society of Greater Dayton in early 2008.

When the Islamic society cut the size of the mosque nearly in half, to a 19,000-square-foot building that can accommodate up to 500 people, the zoning board OK'd the proposal. As the Web site points out, only mosques and Islamic centers that faced opposition are listed. Many more have been built without resistance in recent years.

Click on pewforum.org for the interactive graphic.

THE REV. BILL HYBELS has been speaking a lot about whispers lately.

The founding pastor of Willow Creek Community Church in suburban Chicago talked about hearing God the life-changing, quiet whispers of God when he spoke in Toledo for CedarCreek Church's 15th anniversary last month and at the 2010 Leadership Summit that was beamed worldwide by satellite in August.

Mr. Hybels puts his sermons' thoughts into written words for his latest book, The Power of a Whisper: Hearing God, Having the Guts to Respond, published by Zondervan.

The megachurch pastor, who has written more than 20 books and spearheaded the seeker-sensitive movement, cites numerous Bible verses in which God spoke to his prophets, and said he believes the Lord is still speaking to his people today - quietly, in whispers.

Twice in his life, God whispered two-word messages that brought radical changes: First, it was "Start one," meaning start a church, and the second message was "Serve pastors," which sparked Mr. Hybels to devote much of his time to mentoring ministers and to start the annual Leadership Summit.

Zondervan is offering packages of study guides based on The Power of a Whisper, from a participant's guide ($7.99) to a curriculum set for congregations and small groups ($282.81).

Information: willowcreek

.com/whisper or 800-570-9812.

• Author Max Lucado now has "100 million products in print," according to his publicists. That includes 80 million books by the Texas pastor and author. The other 20 million include animated children's videos, greeting cards, and licensed gift products.

• Chris Byrd, minister of music and worship at the Worship Center in Toledo, recently released a CD, Vessel, released by Minstrel House Music. "I have always considered myself a vessel to be used by God," Mr. Byrd said. "I want to use the gifts and talents he's given me for his glory." Information: chrisbyrd.org.

• The strange case of the Rev. Gerald Robinson, convicted in 2006 for the 1980 murder of Sister Margaret Ann Pahl, will be featured in a new TV series called American Occult. The program will air at 10 p.m. Oct. 30 on the Investigation Discovery cable channel.



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