About Jeff Finley

Jeff Finley serves as executive editor. He joined Light + Life in 2011 after a dozen years of reporting and editing for Sun-Times Media. He is a volunteer youth leader at John Wesley Free Methodist Church in Indianapolis.
Author Archive | Jeff Finley

Central’s Business Administration Degree Ranks Third in U.S.

BP1_0491 revCentral Christian College of Kansas has secured national recognition for its bachelor’s degree in business administration. An OnlineDegrees.com report ranked Central third in the nation for its exemplary scores in numerous categories, including:
• The number of available distance education programs
• The percentage of undergraduates who were awarded financial aid
• The percentage of students enrolled in distance education
• The retention rate of full-time students

According to Marcelle White, the senior managing editor of QuinStreet, this survey “highlighted features important to prospective online students such as career services, including job placement and student services, interaction with peers, [and] available scholarships and grants. [The] well-thought-out methodology aims to provide prospective students with the best college options for completing an online bachelor’s degree program in business administration.”

Central aims to have continuity between its online and on-campus degree programs. Its mission to provide an education for the whole person – heart, mind, body and soul – is meant to create an environment where students can fully thrive and flourish during their educational journey.

Visit onlinedegrees.com/business-administration to view the complete ranking and methodology. Visit ccckfoundation.org to support Central’s academic programs.

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The Kenney Announces New Executive Director

John Cruz Bio photoDavid Smeltzer, the chief executive officer of Heritage Ministries, has announced that John Cruz has been named the executive director of The Kenney in West Seattle, Washington.

A graduate of San Francisco University with a degree in organizational behavior studies, Cruz earned his Master of Business Administration degree from the Marylhurst University in 2017 and has extensive experience in the senior care industry, previously serving as the executive director of a senior living community in Oregon.

“We are excited to have John join our team at The Kenney as the new executive director. We believe his expertise, prior experience, and passion will add tremendous value to our organization and our residents. Over the past four years, the collaborative partnership between The Kenney and Heritage Ministries has allowed both organizations to flourish in their mutual passion and mission to serve seniors. We also see tremendous opportunity in both the immediate and long-term future of our industry and our companies,” said Bruce Erickson, Heritage’s vice president of senior housing.

Cruz will oversee daily operations of all aspects at The Kenney, West Seattle’s only Continuing Care Retirement Community, including independent living, assisted living, and memory care.

“I am excited to be joining the team at The Kenney, and the long history surrounding it. My short time here has been enriched by staff and residents’ open arms. I look forward to being part of the future here at The Kenney,” Cruz stated.

Heritage Ministries, the parent company of The Kenney, was founded as the Orphanage and Homes of the Free Methodist Church in 1886 and has grown from its original campus in Gerry, New York, to six locations in New York with additional affiliations in the states of Washington, Illinois and Pennsylvania. As a not-for-profit provider of senior care and housing, Heritage is a leader in the industry, employing approximately 1,500 team members and serving more than 2,500 individuals annually. With locations in New York, Pennsylvania, Illinois and Washington, Heritage and its affiliates provide rehabilitation and skilled nursing services, memory care, independent retirement housing, and assisted living. The Homestead Stables provides intergenerational equestrian opportunities as well as boarding, training and lessons. In addition, child care is provided at two campuses, allowing for intergenerational programs.

For more information on Heritage Ministries and The Kenney, please visit heritage1886.org or thekenney.org.

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Heintzman Shares Vision for FM Communications

BrettHThe new Free Methodist Church – USA communications director is an experienced communicator and spiritual leader. Brett Heintzman, an ordained elder in the Genesis Conference and associate director of the National Prayer Ministry, officially began his new role on March 4. The communications director oversees FMCUSA communications such as denominational websites, book publishing and Light + Life Magazine/Revista Luz y Vida.

“Brett comes with a rich history of leadership at several levels in the FMC from local church to denominational ministry,” said FMCUSA Chief Operating Officer Mark Dowley while announcing Heintzman’s hiring to staff at the World Ministries Center. “Additionally, Brett is well-experienced in the fields of technology and communications.”

Heintzman views the communications director role as a continuation of his call to ministry.

“In all of my ministry life, God has been changing me, shaping me and crafting me to deliver what I believe is a very specific message to the church, and that is to call God’s people back to holiness and vibrancy of life in the Holy Spirit,” Heintzman said during an interview in his new office at the World Ministries Center. “When I was approached to consider this position, what really got me was the thought that ‘Lord, you’re opening the door for a whole new avenue for this message.’”

While emphasizing what makes the denomination unique, Heintzman said, Free Methodists must embrace change instead of fearing it. Technological advancements have changed communication methods drastically in recent years. Heintzman — who previously owned a technology firm in New York — said our methods must change “to help accomplish effectively our mission to love God, love people and make disciples.” He wants to ensure that the Indianapolis-based communications team’s efforts connect with congregations across the denomination.

“My goal is to really investigate, promote and implement ways that communication can actually reach the person in the local church and bring us together in our distinctives,” Heintzman said. “I would like to see communications make a difference to an increasingly diverse audience in our culture. I would like to see it help the people in our denomination understand who they are in light of the greater church.”

After becoming a Christian at age 13, Heintzman realized his musical abilities provided a place to connect in the local church. In 1989, he accepted a staff position as a worship leader at a church in Florida. In 1994, he became the worship leader at Harvest Chapel — a Free Methodist congregation in Fredonia, New York. In 2010, he became the lead pastor of the Jamestown (New York) Free Methodist Church. Since July 2017, he and his wife, Barb, have served in a stateside missions role that includes teaching across the nation. During a 26-week period last year, he traveled to 39 locations for prayer initiatives and speaking engagements that included two weeklong camps.

Heintzman is the author of the books “The Crossroads: Asking for the Ancient Paths” and “Jericho: Your Journey to Deliverance and Freedom,” both of which are available at freemethodistbooks.com. He is now writing a five-volume book series to address components of spiritual revitalization for churches.

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What Child Is This?

As we enter a New Year, we have fresh memories of joyful celebration of the gift of the child who changes everything for us. In our Christmas celebrations, many of us sang the classic carol: “What Child is This?” The song reflects on the wonder of God’s great gift to the world, who was proclaimed alive while still preborn and the fulfiller of God’s promises to bring salvation to persons, families, communities and the entire world.

The angel told Joseph that the child conceived and to be born was from the Holy Spirit (Matthew 1:20). And the preborn son of Elizabeth leaped in her womb at the presence of Mary, carrying the world’s Savior and Lord (Luke 1:41). Clearly, life abounds in this story from conception to crucifixion and re-emerges in the resurrection of Jesus.

The Free Methodist Church celebrates life beginning at conception and ending at a time of physical death (2015 Book of Discipline Par. 3222). We honor what God has created and sustained in creation by opposing the termination of preborn babies after conception. Human life is sacred and bears the image of our Creator God. Such life, in whatever the circumstances of its conception, rightly causes us awe and draws us to offer protection and care. Our Scriptures imply this clearly (Psalm 139:13-14).

It grieves us deeply to learn of a recent law enacted in the state of New York making provision for preborn children to be aborted even when they are medically considered full-term and “viable.” We understand that the Supreme Court has recognized a right to privacy that offers a legal right to abortion. We have opposed such laws and deny the legitimacy of such a right. But this new law goes even further to the point of allowing the termination of life for healthy babies. We view such laws as contrary to the will of God expressed both in creation and throughout the Scriptures.

The Free Methodist Church calls its members to respect civil authority and to participate fully in public life. Within such respect, however, there is a place and even a necessity for opposition to laws and legal decisions that are unjust and run counter to the way of Jesus our Lord. Such opposition has been a feature of our witness and service to the world from the inception of our church. We also note that Free Methodists have been on the front lines of offering alternate and better ways than that of the world. We have responded to the legalization of abortion with opening crisis pregnancy clinics, adoption advocacy and opportunity, and the welcoming of women into our homes and churches whose pregnancies overwhelm them.

We call upon our members to pray, advocate and engage appropriately with due respect for authority but with unwavering love for and protection of life.

Board of Bishops

Free Methodist Church – USA


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Memorial Service Scheduled for Pastor John Hendricks

46782272_10216732769488054_3988914944463601664_oDuring his 58 years as a Free Methodist pastor, John Hendricks had an especially fruitful ministry to people of diverse ages and backgrounds — including many college students who attended the Free Methodist churches bordering their campuses. Hendricks, 85, pastored in Ypsilanti, Michigan; St. Petersburg, Florida; Spring Arbor, Michigan; Greenville, Illinois; and Lakeland, Florida.

Hendricks died Sunday, Nov. 25, following a fall the previous day that resulted in severe brain trauma.

After a private graveside service for family earlier in the day, a 3 p.m. public memorial service will be held Friday, Nov. 30, at Light & Life Free Methodist Church, 5730 Deeson Road, Lakeland FL 33810, with a time to visit with family immediately following the service.

The family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations in Hendricks’ name be made to International Child Care Ministries. Thank you for your prayers on behalf of the family.

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