Please help support the Jones family

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update:Andrew Jones is now with Bones Jones at the hostel in Accra. He is very weak but healthy. We are now working on flights to reunite the family in North Carolina as soon as possible.

Podcast family –

Please consider making a donation to help the Andrew Jones family.

As you may remember, we talked with Andrew in episode 2.5.

And the entire Jones family has been an inspiration to many as they’ve worked diligently to bring heaven to earth to people around the world.

Andrew’s wife, Debra (or Mum Jones to many) passed away earlier this week and as the latest update we’ve heard, Andrew is still recovering from illness in the hospital.

From Facebook:

It is with great sadness and sorrow that I announce the passing of our beloved sister and fellow warrior Debra Jones. She died June 15th of kidney failure in Gambi Hospital in Bahar Dar, Ethiopia. She was on a journey loving people in ways that always stretched our capacity and blew our imagination.

The funds gathered will be a love offering to help them with travel costs, funeral accommodations, food, and time together.

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Is Hollywood really anti-Christian?

NPR writes that Jon Erwin, director of the new movie October Baby, “hasn’t found much success working with Hollywood. When he recently spoke at an October Baby screening at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank in Washington, D.C., Erwin said so a little more bluntly, arguing that Christians didn’t feel very welcome in Hollywood’s movie community.

I wonder if it’s really “Christians” or “Christianity” that Hollywood has an issue with or something else. I’m not sure Hollywood has a problem with faith or faith topics when they’re presented in an honest manor.

And I wonder what Steve Taylor or Matt Barber would say about that.

Steve Taylor has written recently that in making Blue Like Jazz – The Movie, they’ve received more flack from the “Christian movie industry” than Hollywood itself.

He also writes that “Christian Movie” has calcified in the public consciousness into a genre where:

  • Sentimentality trumps substance
  • Good intentions trump artistry
  • All conflict must be tidily resolved
  • “Safe for the whole family” is a de facto requirement
  • Or as writer David McFadzean summarized, Christian movies are like porn – poorly lit, poorly acted and you always know how they’re going to end.

Despite what some might suggest, it seems to me that Hollywood (and the general public at large) is always interested in a good story – that’s well told.

And I can think of a number of films that Hollywood has gladly welcomed in the last 10 years or so that have dealt specifically with faith (and that doesn’t include all the others that include elements of faith and truth).

Perhaps the biggest issue folks like Jon Erwin have is they expect Hollywood to always welcome films that shine a positive light on faith and Christianity…

What do you think? Is Hollywood set on killing stories of faith (or Christianity)?

And maybe additionally, in this age when film making is becoming more and more accessible to folks – does it matter?

BTW – Blue Like Jazz releases in the US on April 13th. October Baby is in theaters now.

Competition: Win Come Let Us Adore Him by the Lower Lights

Hey everyone… I hope you enjoyed our Christmas ‘nines’? It really came together and I am grateful to everyone who contributed to the episode. It would be wrong for me to single out any particular contribution… because there was a real synergy effect in action.

That said… I do want to pay tribute to music of The Lower Lights. I was bowled over when they allowed us to use their music on the show. I am a huge fan of their rootsy folk sound and it really was the icing on the cake when they said “yes”… via the wonder of Twitter.

I really love their latest album… Come let us adore Him… it combines their timeless sound with the joy and anticipation of Christmas. I do get annoyed when we only sing carols in Advent… consider the sheer power of the lyrics to “O holy night” for example:

Truly He taught us to love one another, His law is love and His gospel is peace. 

Chains he shall break, for the slave is our brother. And in his name all oppression shall cease.

It really doesn’t get any better than that… in my opinion.

Anyway… due to an administrative error… I’ve ended up with two copies of Come let us adore Him and have been given permission by the band themselves to give one away… rather than return it to them… which is wonderfully generous of them.

So… it’s competition time!!!

To enter… please visit the Bandcamp page for Come let us adore Him and pick your favourite song from the thirteen songs on the album. Leave a comment on this page with the name of your fave Christmas song, as sung by the band, and give us a reason why. The person who leaves the best reason why… by midday (GMT) on Saturday (7th January 2012)… will win the CD.

I hope that makes sense? While you are there… please take the time to check out their other albums: A hymn revival is particularly strong… and please do what you can to support grassroots independent music in all its wonder flavours.

Thomas