Friday, February 16, 2024

Additional Outreaches

Over the past few weeks, I have been sharing some outreaches of New Jerusalem Ministries. I shared about some changes that will impact this ministry this year as well New Jerusalem Singers and Happy Times Variety Show.  

In this blog post I would like to share a few other outreaches we have that many may be unfamiliar with. We will look at them one by one. 

Needless to say, if you are reading this you know I write a blog. Well, I have been on hiatus with some of these things for quite a while, but I am slowly making my way back to being active in these things as the Lord leads. I recently resumed blogging. My blog will consist of me sharing my thoughts on a variety of topics on, what I hope to be, a weekly basis. Be sure to check back and check out my blog. I would encourage you to take some time to go back in time to read some of my previous blog posts as well. 

I also started a Vlog some time back. I don't have many posts but I look to start posting more vlogs in the near future. I will be sharing thoughts on my vlog from time to time. I will share inspirational thoughts as well as words of encouragement. I would encourage you to subscribe to my vlog and you will be notified when I post a new vlog. 

Check out my vlog at 

My YouTube channel has my preaching and teaching in various settings such as churches, home, outside or even sitting my favorite chair. You can access my YouTube channel at .

My podcast will cover a variety of topics and will include personal thoughts from my own journey as well as interviews with others on a wide variety of topics. You can access my podcast on a variety of platforms. You can check out my podcast using this link: 

Another outreach of NJM is a ministerial fellowship. Our ministry motto is Encourage, Exhort and Edify. That is what we do with NJM Ministerial Fellowship. We work with ministers, ministries, churches, singers, organizations or anyone who may need encouragement, counseling or advise on the various aspects of ministry. This is a free service that we offer however there may be federal, state or county fees associated with legally setting up a Corportation or ministry. 

We host an online Bible Study every other week on Mondays at 7 pm. We host this via Zoom. This is an interactive Bible Study where we encourage everyone to participate and share. We generally go for an hour or so and this includes prayer time at the end of the Bible Study. If you are interested in receiving a link to the Zoom Bible Study, send us your email address and we will add you to our email list when a link is posted. This is also simulcast on my personal Facebook page.  

There is so much associated with ministry, and we try to be available as needed. We are able to serve communion to those who are shut in or may not have a church home. If a loved one is in a senior retirement environment, we can go to them. 

We are able to baptize those locally who have believed on Jesus as their personal Savior and desire to take that next step and be baptized. 

We also perform weddings as well as funerals. 

There may well be other things we do and other services we provide that escape my memory. We love God and love what He has called us to do. 

After reading the last several blog posts, you should have a pretty good understanding of what New Jerusalem Ministries is all about. In a nutshell...IT'S ALL ABOUT JESUS!

Please feel free to share this blog post with others who may be interested in NJM and what we offer. We stand ready to serve. 

Until next time, 

Enjoy the journey!


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Friday, February 9, 2024

Happy Times Variety Show

In this blog post I want to share a little about a newer outreach that is available. I firmly believe that Christians can have good clean fun. In fact, I had a pastor who would often say, "If Christians can't have good clean fun, then who in this sin-sick world can?" That always stuck with me. 

As a ministry, we believe the gospel is needful and relevant for all age groups. NJM since its inception has had a very strong emphasis on what we deem to be a forgotten segment of society - senior citizens. 

New Jerusalem Singers, our gospel group I shared about in my last blog post, play and sing old time traditional and country gospel music at many senior retirement facilities and senior groups. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, we were not permitted to come and sing for quite some time. That left the seniors without a form of ministry or family entertainment. While we were eventually allowed to sing on a very limited basis outside and under limited circumstances due to COVID protocols, we seen the need for these seniors to be provided with quality family entertainment and interaction. 

As a result, we developed a program that would still give seniors who are shut in some entertainment. In 2020 we developed Happy Times Variety Show to fill this need. This includes, but is not limited to, playing songs and music from the 1920's - 1970's that seniors are familiar with. We play a variety of rhythm instruments along with the music. This has gone over very well. In fact, we are doing both a gospel program as well as Happy Times at some facilities on a monthly basis. God is using us to bring joy to and make a difference in the lives of seniors. 

We believe everyone needs to laugh from time to time. It does the soul good. Happy Times Variety Show will do just that. Seeing the smiles and sometimes even the tears as memories flood back from playing these old songs on the faces of the people we play to is so rewarding. We have found that is has become popular enough to offer on a larger scale. 

Happy Times Variety Show is a family friendly variety show consisting primarily of music (DJ style) that includes Country, Gospel, Folk, 50's Rock n Roll, Big Band, Cowboy, Pop and includes songs from the 1920's through the 1970's. We play a variety of rhythm instruments along with the music. Some of the instruments we play include washboard, cajon bongos, bones, sticks, tambourine, shakers, castanets, bells, cabasa, spoons, Chilean rain stick along with others too numerous to name. We are always looking for instruments to add. From time to time, we also utilize puppets, illusions and props. 

If you desire further information or desire to book Happy Times Variety Show for your facility or event, feel free to contact Cindy at 217 652-0423 or email us at and give us the pertinent information (Name, Date, Time, Contact Information) and we will check our schedule and get back to you as soon as possible.

There is a link to the Happy Times Variety Show website on our ministry page at . We encourage you to check it out. There are even a few photos on the Happy Times website. 

If you know of someone who may be interested in this post or interested in Happy Times Variety Show, please feel free to share this blog post with them. Thank you. 

Until next time, 

Enjoy the journey!


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Saturday, January 27, 2024

New Jerusalem Singers

I would like to take this opportunity to share with you some information regarding the part of New Jerusalem Ministries (NJM) that has been active the longest. In fact, this particular facet of our ministry is older than even NJM, itself.  

While Cindy and I have been singing all of our married life (and even before we got married), we didn't formally form the singing ministry until June of 1988. It was at this time we formed New Jerusalem Singers (NJS). We got our start singing in nursing homes, hi-rises, retirement homes, reunions and at just about any other event we were allowed to sing at. 

We started off as a quartet. My brother-in-law, Paul Summers, sang bass and played bass guitar with us. In fact, while trying to figure out a name for the new southern gospel group, it was Paul who suggested New Jerusalem Singers. We all liked it and it stuck. 

The group has been a quartet, trio and duet. We have utilized keyboard, and at time even two keyboards. We have utilized rhythms with the keyboards until I was able to learn how to play bass. Our son, Matthew, began singing at age 5 and played drums with us when he was 6 or 7 years old. We had electronic drum pads he played for some time. An older preacher friend told me, "That boy needs a drum set". He asked us to research how much a new drum set would cost. He generously purchased a drum set for Matthew to play. At another time we had a full band which included, keyboard, bass, rhythm guitar, lead guitar along with drums. The group currently consists of Cindy and me. Cindy plays rhythm guitar and piano/keyboard and I play bass. We do invite others to join us from time to time, as well. 

As previously mentioned, we started out singing southern gospel music. We have also sung country gospel music as well as traditional gospel music. Currently we are more of a blend of country gospel and traditional gospel music stylistically. We love singing old hymns and old songs of the faith whose messages have stood the test of time. These songs are never out of date. 

Without a doubt, we sing primarily to senior citizens. Even the churches we sing at are primarily attended by seniors. We travel thousands of miles each year singing and sharing the gospel message through word and song. Each song is a sermon, in and of itself. 

We recently purchased a new keyboard for the ministry and will begin bringing back some keyboard playing in some of the places we go. Cindy will also continue using her guitar at many of the places we sing. 

God has blessed us through the years as we have traveled singing for His glory. We continue to sing to seniors in various settings, churches of various denominations and affiliations, fairs, festivals and any other events where gospel music is desired. We rarely turn down an opportunity to share the gospel through song. We believe God will continue to open doors for us as we are faithful to Him. 

Our goal is to encourage, exhort and edify God's people where ever they may be or however they may meet. 

If you are interested in scheduling New Jerusalem Singers to come and sing at your church, facility or event give Cindy a call at 217 652-0423 or email and give us the information regarding your event and we will check out schedule and get back to you. Check out our website at for additional information about NJS.

I will share another aspect of New Jerusalem Ministries in my next blog post. 

If you know of someone who may be interested in this post or interested in New Jerusalem Singers please feel free to share this blog post with them. Thank you. 

Until next time, 

Enjoy the journey!


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Saturday, January 20, 2024

A Couple of Changes

In my last blog I mentioned that some changes were on the horizon. I want to take a moment to share a couple of changes that have been made. 

One change we have made is I have shut down my personal website that I have had for many years. We have folded the things from my personal website into our ministry site at . I would encourage you to check out our ministry website. You will find the various ministries and things we are doing at the present time. You will also find some book recommendations (Good Reads) as well as some links that will not only encourage you but may very well challenge you, as well. I hope you will check it out. 

The second change we have made is we are cutting our travel. Please note, this does not include churches or church gatherings. We have sung for decades in retirement homes, supportive living facilities, and nursing homes. Some of our travel has taken us from Central Illinois to other parts of the state. While we are still traveling to some of these distant towns to sing in these facilities, we have cut back on the number of times per year we do this.  

It's not that we don't love doing this but through the years singing 20-25 times most months has taken its toll on us physically as well as vocally. These have not been easy decisions for us to make but we do feel they are necessary ones. These are not spur of the moment decisions but rather these are decisions we have talked about, thought about and most importantly prayed about.

We have found that as we are backing off some things that other doors are opening for us. We will continue singing and serving in whatever capacity God would have us to. Nothing has changed there. 

In upcoming blog posts I will share the various aspects of ministry and service we are involved in. The future is bright, and we remain excited for what God has in store for us. 

Until next time, 

Enjoy the journey!


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Friday, January 12, 2024

It's A New Season

Wow. It's been a long while since I made my last blog post. November 4, 2021 to be exact. It was my intent to resume blogging in January of 2022. Yet I did not do that. 

What happened, you may wonder?  In a nutshell it was due to health reasons as well as our schedule. Prior to that November, we were still in the COVID -19 Pandemic. Yet we carried a heavy schedule. In 2021 we sang 115 times, did 3 sings via Zoom, preached 14 times filling pulpits, conducted 2 church services at a supported living facility, sang with Cindy "Live from our Living Room" via Facebook Live 26 times, I taught a Fruit of the Spirit Series via Facebook Live that went 9 lessons, I taught a series on The Names & Character of God that went 14 lessons, I taught a series A Closer Walk With God that went 14 lessons, we jointly did a Bible Study via Zoom for a supportive living facility 19 times, we hosted a Zoom Bible Study 19 times, I blogged 44 times, did a vlog 3 times, did 40 podcasts, we did 12 variety shows, performed 4 baptisms and 1 funeral. Cindy and I did these things on top of the health issues we were dealing with. We remained busy in 2022 and added even more things in 2023. 

I didn't share all of this for accolades. Trust me we do not want, nor do we need them. We do what we do because we love to do it. However, at that time to be quite honest I was feeling overwhelmed. Something had to be put on the back burner for a while. 

Fast forward and here we are in January of 2024. Where did all the time go? We have taken some time to reevaluate the various things we are involved in. 

In the Bible, even Solomon (known as the wisest man to live) told us "To everything there is a season, and a time for to every purpose under the heaven". So, there are seasons for things. That is, some things run their course. They are a part of our lives for a season - for a time. After they have run their course or time and purpose then there comes a time to step back and reevaluate.

We are now in this phase. Some decisions have been made. Some changes are on the horizon. There is even a new ministry door that has opened for us to do some one-on-one ministry. 

One thing I felt strongly about was that I wanted to resume blogging. It is something I enjoy...even if no one reads these posts. I find that it is good for me. I hope to resume blogging once a week but if not, it will be every other week. 

We also feel at this stage in our lives we need to slow down on some things. Take time to smell the roses, so to speak. Slowing down and taking time for self could very well improve quality and longevity of life. 

There is always a need and there is much to do. We would love to see others catch the vision and get involved in serving. If you have a desire to serve let me know. Contact me and we can arrange to get together and share some opportunities that are open right now. 

As our season is ending in some things perhaps your season is about to begin. Serve strong. Serve well. The harvest is ready. Just need laborers. Will you be a laborer for Jesus?

Until next time, 

Enjoy the journey!


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