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2002 PE Report stories

Congregations demonstrate weekly prayer yields results (December 30, 2001)

L.A. Dream Center, Angelus Temple make history, reach more with merge (December 16, 2001)

Rain, gang doesn't halt impact of newly formed congregation (December 9, 2001)

Women urged to minister hope at global gathering (November 25, 2001)

Volunteers meet needs at Pentagon cleanup (November 18, 2001)

Fear, uncertainty open window of opportunity for evangelism (November 11, 2001)

'Jump for Jesus' raises $40,000 for STL (October 21, 2001)

Widows, single mothers gain practical blessings (October 14, 2001)

Five new executive presbyters elected (September 30, 2001)

Credit card 'freedoms' tempt college students (September 16, 2001)

Fellowship, nation show ethnic makeup changes (August 26, 2001)

Congregations extend a hand, spread gospel after tropical storm (August 19, 2001)

Single-parent families find hope at camp (August 12, 2001) caught in middle of culture war (July 22, 2001)

Pentecostal World Conference looks toward future cooperation (July 13, 2001)

Crossover Community Church ministers to hip-hop culture (July 8, 2001)

Prison chaplain hooked on ministry (June 24, 2001)

National Singles team convenes, plans regional conferences (June 17, 2001)

Children's ministries take center stage (June 10, 2001)

U.S. Christians trek to Israel despite news reports of danger (May 27, 2001)

A/G ministries combat eating disorders (May 20, 2001)

Mobilizing laity leads to church growth (May 13, 2001)

Fellowship convenes conference for women (April 29, 2001)

14,547 'honored guests' attend Convoy of Hope outreach in Dallas (April 22, 2001)

Hollywood sends wrong signals on teen smoking (April 15, 2001)

Iowa community faces unique challenges (April 8, 2001)

Churches support ministries to lead youth out of lifestyle (March 25, 2001)

English lessons reach Chinese with gospel (March 18, 2001)

A/G church, police, schools partner for strong community (March 11, 2001)

Church uses 'human hunt' as evangelism tool for teens (February 25, 2001)

Ministering in the fast lane (February 18, 2001)

Abstinence education saves lives, futures (February 11, 2001)

Donated food helps Convoy of Hope extend hand around the world (January 21, 2001)

American Indian College students impact boarding school (January 14, 2001)

2000 News Digest stories

Single-parent families find hope at camp

(August 12, 2001)

Four years ago, Erika Hartmann loaded up a van and, with her children and another family, traveled from Illinois to Oklahoma to attend the Oklahoma District’s second Single Parent Family Camp. It was a long trip — made longer by car problems that forced them to alternately drive and push the overheating van.

The camp for single-parent families, which attracts nearly 300 people, runs during one weekend once a year.


But Hartmann says it was worth the struggle. "Once I got there, God broke a lot of things in my life," she says. "I found that my strength was in Him, and I became content with who I am."

Since then, convinced of the camp’s value, Hartmann has taken other families with her to the camp each year.

Gary and Debbie Pratt, singles pastors at First A/G in Lawton, Okla., coordinate the camp for the Oklahoma District, for which they are also singles ministry coordinators.

The camp, which attracts nearly 300 people, runs for a weekend once a year. Families from all over the Midwest attend, often with financial assistance from their churches. The camp is designed to give single-parent families a weekend away from the pressures of life, but more importantly an opportunity for them to receive ministry.

"We see that for many of our single parents and their children, their self-worth has been shattered," Gary Pratt says. "They’re struggling as parents and as individuals. We want them to feel good about who they are when they leave."

When families arrive at the camp, the young children, teens and adults go to separate dorm facilities and attend church services tailored to meet their needs. Adults attend workshops on parenting skills, finances, and other practical topics while youth sessions follow a similar format.

Parents and their children later team up for activities that encourage teamwork and cooperation. "In many cases, there’s a struggle going on in these families," Pratt says. "Many families who attend the camp don’t feel like a family. The parents don’t feel like parents and many of the kids have been forced into situations where they’ve grown up quickly." One of the elements of the camp is to instill a sense of family back into the family.

During a Communion service, which is a mainstay of the camp, Robert Mullen found himself praying aloud with his two sons, ages 11 and 12, for the first time.

Five years ago, Mullen believed his family was on the verge of collapse. He had divorced three years earlier, and was trying to balance his responsibilities as a police officer with the needs of his children.

Mullen was referred to the Pratts’ ministry and attended the first Single Parent Family Camp though he had not yet become a Christian.

"The weekend was the most intense spiritual weekend that I have ever had," he says. "It was the icebreaker for me to get hold of my life and be led to the Lord, and bring my kids with me."

Pratt says a change takes place in the parents and children during the camp. "By the last day, they know who they are in Christ," he says. "They feel better about who they are as parents and their self-worth has been raised."

— Katy Attanasi

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