I was going through some old e-mails I received recently and have been backed up due to the holidays waiting for me to read through them. I receive an email newsletter regularly from Charisma Magazine. One from Friday December 22nd caught my eye. It was a list of Charisma’s Christian newsmakers of 2006. (This is a link to Charisma's online forums but the article in its entirity appears there.)
J. Lee Grady is the editor of Charisma and author of this article. And, I guess he made his point that while these 10 people were newsmakers in the charismatic movement that they didn't get much attention in the mainstream press - I had heard of only 1 of the individuals and another has affiliation with my own denomination who I'd never heard of either! But, I was moved by some of the things these people accomplished!
Grady put my own thoughts into words when choosing Larry Stockstill for the top of list. This was the pastor who stepped into the Ted Haggard hurricane, began his removal and discipline process but also reminded everyone and advocated God's grace over sinners in his role as a spokesman for New Life’s overseer board. I agree with Grady that Stockstill did believers proud in his handling of the situation.
The other one that jumped out at me was Grady's second choice: Billy Wilson. Wilson is affiliated with my own denomination, the Church of God of Prophecy. Wilson took the reigns of the Azusa Street Centennial celebration when its original organizer, Robert Fisher, passed away unexpectedly. He is said to have been the perfect choice for this enormous celebration (which drew 31,000 people from 131 nations to Los Angeles in April - see the report here) because he shared Fisher's original vision "for unity in a fragmented movement."
I'm proud that someone from my organization which has not been always known for its unity-oriented thinking has such a leader who believes in this type of togetherness- which, incidently, I think is exemplified by all the ladies who are my fellow Faithprints "alumni" who now write here at Blogger. We're all from different backgrounds but able to keep our love of Christ and our dedication to improving our walks in the forefront of our online friendships.
And, on the topic of unity, I found it inspiring that that so many groups are mentioned in Grady's article: nondenominational charistimatics, Pentecostal, COGOP, Baptist, Episcopalian. It brings me hope that some are inspired and driven to follow God's call on their lives to bring healing among different groups all trying to bring God's love to the world.
Feeling lifted up and proud today...but to God be the glory! :)