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Friday, July 22, 2016

St. Philippine Duchesne, RSCJ

St. Rose Philippine Duchesne, RSCJ (1769-1852) = Missionary Nun. Revered by the Potawatomi and given the name of “Quah-Kah-Ka-Num-Ad” (woman who prays always), Rose was born in Grenoble, France, the second of eight children to Pierre Francois and Rose Euphrosine Perier Duchesne. She survived the religious persecution of the French Revolution.
 Bishop Louis William Valentine DuBourg, bishop of Louisiana, sent Mother Rose Philippine Duchesne and a group of nuns, in 1818, to establish an Academy of the Sacred Heart in St. Charles, Missouri. Not only did she establish the free-of-charge girl’s school, but also the first convent of the Religious Sisters of the Sacred Heart, a teaching order, there.
In 1838, the US federal government forced some 900 Potawatomi from their land in Indiana and made them march single file over 600 miles in three months, ending near present day Osawatomie, Kansas. The forced march is now known as the Trail of Death as many died along the way. Most of the surviving Potawatomi eventually settled in Sugar Creek near Mound City, but were later relocated to St. Marys on the Kansas River in 1847. Catholic missionaries opened schools for boys and girls at both.
Duchesne’s dream was to serve the Indians and she made quite an impression on them when it finally became a reality at the age of 72, thanks to her friends, Fr. Peter De Smet, SJ, and Fr. Peter John Verhaegan, SJ. She and three other nuns arrived in Kansas City on a steamboat on the way to their assigned mission. She never quite mastered the Indian language, but prayed daily, visited the sick, and helped the Indian girls with their knitting. After a year, she was summoned back to St. Charles where she lived the rest of her life, dying on November 18, 1852. One hundred, thirty-six years after death, she achieved sainthood when canonized on July 3, 1988.

Posthumous Award:
1918 = The Historical Society of Missouri named her the greatest benefactor among the state’s pioneer women.

More to Read:
1. Philippine Duchesne. By Louise Callan.
2. The Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas. 150 Years of Faith: 1850-2000. By Todd Habiger. 2000.
3. Dictionary of Christianity in America.Editors: Daniel G. Reid, Robert D. Linder, Bruce L.Shelley, & Harry S. Stout, Intervarsity Press, Downers Grove, IL, 1990.
4. Webster’s Biographical Dictionary. Merriam-Webster, Springfield, MA; 1956.
5. A Centenary of Catholicity in Kansas: 1822-1922. By Thomas H. Kensella. Casey Printing, Kansas City; 1921.
9. Shrine of St. Rose Philippine Duchesne
10. St. Philippine Historical and Memorial Park
11. Missouri: Day by Day. By Floyd C. Shoemaker, Editor. Mo State Historical Society, 1942.
12. Findagrave #301 and  # 9395

Places to Visit in MO & KS:
1. The Shrine of St. Rose Philippine Duchesne, 619 North 2nd Street., St. Charles, Mo.
3. Sacred Heart Church (f. 1942), Mound City, Linn Co., KS.
4. St. Philippine Duchesne Shrine on Sugar Creek, Mound City, KS.
5. St. Mary’s Mission signpost, St.Marys, KS.
6. Immaculate Conception Church, St. Mary’s, KS. (First cathedral of Vicariate Apostolic of the Indian Territory: 1851-1855).

Monday, May 9, 2016

Daniel Boone

Daniel Boone (1734-1820) = Colonel. Surveyor. Explorer. Sixth child born to Squire and Sarah Morgan Boone in Pennsylvania on November 2, 1734. His grandparents, George and Mary Boone, were English Quakers who settled near Exeter. The Quakers were great friends with the Native Americans in that vicinity. One time his grandfather invited a Moravian missionary to preach at his home and several Delaware Indians were converted to Christianity.

One of young Daniel's chores was to take the cattle out to pasture each morning, then drive them back each evening for his mother to milk. While he tended the cows, he became familiar with the woods and learned to hunt by the time he was thirteen. His family ate the game he shot and traded the skins for things they needed. Daniel was schooled by his older brother's wife, Sarah. She taught him to read, write and to do his sums.

In 1750, his family moved from Pennsylvania to North Carolina. Daniel married Rebecca Bryan (1739-1813) there on August 14, 1756. They had ten children. Their names were James, Israel, Susannah, Jemima, Levinia, Rebecca, Daniel Morgan, Jesse Bryan, William, and Nathan.

Daniel loved to go on long hunts, sometimes leaving home for many months. He explored and surveyed the land. He rediscovered Cumberland Gap, a mountain pass and helped build the Wilderness Road. Boonesborough, a settlement in Kentucky, was named for him.

In 1799, Daniel walked to the Femme Osage district about forty miles from present-day St. Louis, Missouri. Kentucky was getting too crowded for him. Spanish officials appointed him a judge in 1800. He died on September 26, 1820 at Nathan's home.

Historical Note:” Chester Harding is believed to have painted the only portrait of Daniel Boone while he lived and  in 1851, artist George Caleb Bingham paints the most famous nineteenth-century Boone depiction, "Daniel Boone Escorting Settlers Through the Cumberland Gap."

Historical Dates:
1750 = Thomas Walker discovered Cumberland Gap
1769 = Boone explored Kentucky
1775 = Boone established Boonesboro
More to Read:
1. "The Pioneer and The Prairie Lawyer: Boone and Lincoln Family Heritage 1603-1985." By Willard Mounts.Ginwill Publishing, Denver, Colorado, 1991
2. "The Boone Family: A Genealogical History of the Descendants of George and Mary Boone. By Hazel Atterbury Spraker. Tuttle Press, 1922.
3. Morgan & Strode Genealogy. By Jim White.
4. Discovery, Settlement, and Present State of Kentucke. By John Filson. 1784.
5. Daniel Boone. By Lyman C. Draper
6. Stories of the Great West By Theodore Roosevelt
7. Jackson County Pioneers. By Pearl Wilcox. 1975.
8. The Spear and the Spindle: Ancestors of Sir Francis Bryan (d. 1550), Kt, . By T. A. Fuller. Heritage Books, Inc., Bowie, Maryland, 1993. Pp. 113-114.
9. Boone Association. Ken Kamper is the present-day expert on Daniel Boone.
10. Boone Society. Dorthy Mack is considered to be the expert on the Boone genealogy.
11. The History of Jackson County, Missouri. Kansas City, MO; Union Historical Company, Birdsall, Williams & Co., 1881. Reprinted: Cape Girardeau, MO, Ramfre Press, 1966.
12. Chronology of Daniel Boone.
13. Early Settlers List on  Ft. Boonesborough Monument
14. Fort Boonesborough's Living History Teacher's Resource Website
15. Missouri: Day by Day. By Floyd C. Shoemaker, Editor. Mo State Historical Society, 1942.
16. Daniel Boone and the Hunters of Kentucky. By W. H. Bogart. 1854.
17. Findagrave # 109

Places to Visit in MO & KS.:
1. Daniel Boone's statue, Main St, St. Charles, MO.
2. DAR markers, on Main St, St. Charles, MO.
3. Daniel Boone Home and Boonesfield Village, 1868 Highway F, Defiance, MO
4. Daniel Boone's Burial Site in Missouri.
5. Washington Historical Museum, Washington, MO.
6. Boone’s Lick State Historic Site, 12 miles northwest of Boonville on Route 187. Arrow Rock.
7. Boone's Lick Road Association (map)

Boone Descendants:
1.Daniel Morgan Boone 
2. Daniel Morgan Boone on Find-A-Grave # 6223
3. Nathan Boone Homestead State Historic Site, 7860 N. State Hwy V, Ash Grove, MO
4. Capt. Samuel Boone was a great-great nephew of Daniel's. He and several other family members are buried in the Mt. Tabor Methodist Church Cemetery, south of Odessa, MO.
5. Elder Ira Boone, Samuel's brother, was ordained in the historic Pleasant Grove Primitive Baptist Church, 18400 E. Rd. Mize Road, Independence, MO.
6. Septimus Scholl Letters
7. Edgar Watts of Dallas/Watts Mill area of Kansas City, MO. marries Flora Boone, great-great granddaughter of Daniel Boone in 1923.  See the Watts Mill Markers, 103rd Street (south side), between State Line & Wornall Roads, Kansas City, MO.

8. Col. Upton Hays married a descendant of Daniel Boone -- Watts Hay Letters.
9. Bushwhacker Museum, 212 West Walnut Street, Nevada, MO (see quilt top made by a Boone descendant)
10. Price-Loyles House, 718 Spring St, Weston, MO
11. Albert Boone founded Lecompton which was one of the Kansas' territorial capital's pre-state. He also had a dry-goods store in Westport (present-day Kansas City, MO., see Kelly's Inn) at the corner of Westport & Pennsylvania Roads.
Historical Tidbit: Bryon wrote a poem about Daniel Boone.

A Quote by Daniel Boone:
All the religion I have is to love and fear God, do all the good to my neighbors and myself that I can, and do as little harm as I can help, and trust on God's mercy for the rest.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Miss Mary Jane Truman

Miss Mary Jane Truman
Mary Jane Truman (1889-1978) = Pianist/Organist, Sunday School teacher, & sister to former US President Harry S. Truman. Mary Jane was the third child born to John Anderson (1851-1914) and Martha Ellen Young Truman (1852-1947) on August 12. Mary Jane's paternal grandparents were Anderson Shipp and Mary Jane Holmes Truman and her maternal grandparents were Solomon and Harriet Louisa Gregg Young. She was named for her paternal grandmother and Harry's daughter, Mary Margaret Truman was, in turn, named for her.

Solomon Young's Home, Grandview, MO.

Sometime after the Trumans moved to Independence in 1890, Mary's brothers Harry and Vivian came down with diphtheria and she was taken to Grandma Young's in Grandview, MO. to stay until her brothers were well. When Mary Jane was older, she helped with chores in the house and learned to cook for the family as well as the farm hands. She rode a horse on errands to town. After Grandpa passed away, Grandma Young needed help running the farm, so the Truman's moved back. Mary Jane and her mother lived on the farm until the 1940s when they moved into Grandview.

As a member of Grandview's First Baptist Church (f. 1848), Mary Jane taught a Sunday School class and hosted Sunday School picnics on the lawn of their home. Like Harry, she could play the piano or organ and did so regularly for church services. When she was 19, she played for the Grandview Methodist's very first church service, then at 8th and Goode.

She was a postal clerk and an active member of the Chamber of Commerce. She was instrumental in the sale of lands for the Truman Shopping Center built in 1957.
More to Read:
1. Harry S. Truman: Missouri Farm Boy. By Wilma J. Hudson. 1973.
2. History of Grandview, Missouri: 1844-1994. Grandview Historical Society, 1995.
3. Jackson County Pioneers. By Pearl Wilcox. 1975.
4. Mr. President. The First Publication from the Personal Diaries, Private Letters Papers, and Revealing Interviews of Harry S. Truman. By William Hillman. 1952.
5. The Heritage League of Greater Kansas City Directory of Historical Sites and Organizations History Map brochure. PO Box 10366, Kansas City,
6. “Harry Truman: The Millionaire Next Door” By Brian Burnes. The Kansas City Star Magazine, Kansas City, MO.; January 15, 2012. PP. 6-13.
7. Truman’s Grandview Farm. By Jon Taylor. 2011.
8. Missouri Roadsides: The Traveler's Companion. By Bill Earngey. University of MO Press, 1995.
9. Childhoods of the American Presidents. By William O. Foss. McFarland & Co, 2005.
10. "Truman and the Trails" Niel M. Johnson. Overland Journal, Vol. 5, Number 2, 1988. Pp. 25-29 (photo of Solomon Young included in article)
11. Sister-in-law, Bess Truman's biography.
12. This article gives names of Miss Mary's girlfriends. See if you can find them.
13. Findagrave #6137032

Places to Visit in MO.:
1. Former Truman Homes (private residences), on Chrysler St. & at 909 W. Waldo Ave., Independence.  
2. Harry S. Truman Library and Museum, Independence
3. marker at Truman (former name: Corners) Marketplace Shopping Center, between 71/49 Hwy and Blue Ridge Blvd, Grandview
4. Church of God, 8th & Goode, Grandview
5. First Baptist Church Historic Room, 15th and Main St., Grandview (by appointment only)
6. Solomon Young's home, 12301 Blue Ridge Blvd, Grandview. Truman Farm Home, cell phone tour = 585-672-2611.
7.  Annual Truman Heritage Festival, Grandview (parade, craft/food vendors, BBQ contest, etc.)

Update: The National Archives holds the Presidential Secretary's Files from the Truman Administration (1945-1960). Among those papers is his diary he kept while in office.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Jim Bridger

James "Jim" Felix Bridger (1804-1881) = Explorer, Guide, Mountain Man. Scout. Storekeeper. Storyteller. Trapper. Best known to have discovered the Great Salt Lake in 1824, Yellowstone in 1840 and founded Fort Bridger on the Oregon Trail in 1843.
Born on March 17 in Richmond, Virginia, he grew up to not only speak English, but French and Spanish as well as six Native American languages. He was reported to have been made chief of five tribes as well. He traded with the Arapahoes, Cheyennes, Comanche, Kiowas, and the Sioux Indians, bringing the furs in to Chouteau's trading post. 
When the fur market in Europe crashed and ended his trapping career, Bridger switched to storekeeping, buying a general merchandise store which his son-in-law operated in Westport (present-day Kansas City, MO). In 1855 he bought a farm near the old Dallas community south of Kansas City on State Line running from 103rd to 107th St and east to Wornall Road where on the crest of the hill south of Indian Creek he built a stone farmhouse. It is said that he and George W. Kemper also built a store in Little Santa Fe (f. 1852) which is on the old Santa Fe Trail 2o miles from Independence, however it  burned in 1856 during the border warfare.
Jim acquired a pair of elk horns as a prize once for the fastest steamboat on the Missouri River to mount to their prow. They were first presented to the Polar Star, then the James H. Lucas. Lucas beat the Star's record from St. Louis to St. Joseph by three hours and 16 minutes.
Bridger died, blind at 77, on July 17 and was buried about 200 yards northwest of 101st and Jefferson streets  where he lay until he was removed to Mt. Washington Cemetery in 1904.

Historical Note #1: One of biggest things that led to the downfall of the fur business was the discovery of the detrimental effects of mercury poisoning to the hat makers in Europe. Mercury was used to felt the fur then.
More to read:
1.)  Here Lies Kansas City: A Collection of Our City’s Notables and Their Final Resting Places. By Wilda and Hal Sandy. 1984
2.) History of Jackson County, Missouri. By W. Z. Hickman. Historical Publishing Co., Topeka, KS.; 1920; reprinted Southern Historical Press, Greenville, SC; 1990.
3.) Jackson County Pioneers. By Pearl Wilcox. Independence, MO; 1975.
4.) Jim Bridger: Frontiersman and Mountain Guide. By Charles W. Maynard. PowerKids Press, NY.; 2003.
5.) The History of Jackson County, Missouri. Union Historical Co, Birdsall, Williams & Co; KCMO; 1881; reprinted by Ramfire Press, Cape Girardeau, MO; 1966.
6.) Oregon-California Trail Association, 524 South Osage Street, Independence, MO 64051-0519, (Map brochure -- Following the Trails in Jackson County, Missouri; magazine & newsletter -- Overland Journey; News From the Plains)
7.) Oregon Trail Tourist Brochure, National Park Service
8.) “New Red Bridge Spans River, Tracks and History” by Seann McAnally. Jackson County Advocate. Nov. 23, 2011, page 1. (One of the old Red Bridges still exists.)
9.) Missouri: Day by Day. By Floyd C. Shoemaker, Editor. Mo State Historical Society, 1942.
10.) 1877 Plat map of Jim Bridger's Land in Jackson County, MO. (look at the most southwestern corner of map.)
11.) "Trailblazers Influenced the First Chapters of New Santa Fe"

Fun Note:  Johnny Horton sings a ballad about Jim Bridger. If you wish to hear the song, click here!
Places to visit in MO.
1.) Missouri River -- Navigable rivers were the first highways. Plan a driving highway trip along the Missouri River from St. Louis to St. Joseph (or visa versa). Imagine you are Bridger, paddling a canoe up or down river.
2.) Stop, Drop Your Eyes, and Read the marker on Bridger's Bldg, next-door to Kelly's Inn, at 504 Westport Road, Kansas City, MO.
3.) Look up! A Westport Historical marker is attached to a brick building on the corner of Pennysylvania and Westport Roads, Kansas City, MO.
4.) Westport Historical Society, 4000 Baltimore, Kansas City
5.) Pioneer Park, Westport Road and Broadway, Kansas City.
6.) 1963 Westport Historical Society Marker Dedicated to the Memory of the Pioneers Who Settled the Town at the Westport Shopping Center, 1002 Westport Road, Kansas City, MO. (near the old covered wagon at the corner of the parking lot atop a steel post).
7.) Watts Mill markers at 103 St. (south side) between State Line Road and Wornall, Kansas City, MO.
8.) Red Bridge Road. Also stop at Minor Park to see the prairie schooner swales and read the DAR marker, on Red Bridge Road, between Holmes Road (east of) and the Bridge. Kansas City.
9.) New (Little) Santa Fe historical markers, on the Old Santa Fe Trail, between State Line and Wornall Road at the cemetery (west of Avila University), Kansas City, MO.
10.) Red Bridge (Portrait) spans Big Blue River between Blue River Parkway and Holmes Road
11.) National Frontier Trails Center, Independence.
12.) Jim Bridger's Newest Markers -- 901 Carondelet Drive (site of his original farm home) and at the New Santa Fe Historical Society Trails Center, 9901 Holmes Road, Kansas City, Mo.
13.) Findagrave  #21552 and #134 [Note: There is no indication of a cemetery in the quiet neighborhood of 101st and Jefferson streets (just off Wornall Road), south Kansas City.] 
14.) Mt. Washington Cemetery, 614 Brookside Dr., Independence

Historical Note #2: Modes of travel across America during Jim Bridger's lifetime were walking, horseback, canoeing, wagons, prairie schooners, ferries, and steamboats. The steamship Arabia traveled up and down the Missouri River around the same time (1850s) as the Polar Star and the James H. Lucas. Visit the Steamboat Arabia Museum, 400 Grand Ave, Kansas City to see the kind of things steamboats brought to supply shopkeepers such as Bridger along the Missouri River. Steamboats have been described as "a Walmart on paddlewheels."

Monday, August 24, 2015

Zebulon Montgomery Pike

Zebulon Montgomery Pike (1779-1813) = American Army Officer; Explorer. Best known for Pike's Peak Mountain which was named in his honor near Colorado Springs, Colorado. Zebulon was born in Lamberton, New Jersey, a descendant of the brave lady and pioneer, Penelope Stout, on January 5 to Isabella & Col. Zebulon Pike, the second of eight children. Zebulon began his military career at the age of fifteen.
Lieutenant Pike set out from St. Louis, Missouri almost three years after Lewis and Clark's 1803 expedition up the Missouri River.  He was to figure out the western boundary of the Louisiana Purchase the US government purchased from France to end Spain's claim on it. At one time, the western borders of Kansas reached all the way across present day eastern Colorado until 1861 when Congress created the Colorado Territory. Among the expedition members was George Shannon, a brother of Wilson Shannon, who later was  a Kansas Territorial governor. They traveled up the Missouri River, turned off onto the Osage River, and followed it to the Marais des Cygnes River which crosses into Kansas, past Missouri's state line.
Although the Spaniards tried to intercept his expedition, they were unsuccessful, however, along the way, they stopped in a little Indian village and left their flag flying above the village until Pike's troops finally reached it. The none-too-friendly Indians were hospitable though and the Indians were reminded that they could not serve two fathers. The Spanish flag was taken down and presented to Pike which he diplomatically returned to the chief after his men hoisted the United States flag to the top of the pole.
All in the same year, Pike was promoted to Brigadier general and was killed in the assault on York, present-day Toronto, Canada during the War of 1812.

More to Read:
1. The Story of Penelope Stout. Thomas Hale Streets, Alfred J. Ferris Press, Philadelphia, 1897 reprint.
2. Pike's Journal published in 1810.
3. History of Kansas. By Noble L. Prentis. E.P. Greer, Winfield, Kan., 1899.
4. Historic Kansas: A Centenary Sketchbook. By Margaret Whittemore. University of Kansas, Lawrence, 1954.
5. Webster's Biographical Dictionary. C. & C. Merriam Co, Springfield, MA, 1956.
6. The World Book Encyclopedia. Field Enterprises, Chicago, 1968.
7. The Ghost Towns of Central Missouri: Cole, Miller & Moniteau Counties. By Kelly Warman-Stallings. Ketch’s Printing, Jefferson City, MO; 1999. Vol. 1.
10. Findagrave #815 (follow links back to Penelope Stout's memorial)

 Places to Visit in MO & KS.:
1. St. Louis, MO
2. Rivers = Missouri River, Osage River, & the Marais des Cygne River
3. Larned, Ks. (Mrs. Sarah Sturdevant, a great-grandniece of Pike's resided here and preserved some of Pike's papers)
4. “Pike's Parley with Osage Chief” Historical Mural (Walldog) by Dan Brewer, 2003, Dakota & Delaware St, Bates County, Butler, MO (use the search engine on this website for more Zebulon Pike affiliated markers)
5. Pike's Monument (1901), Republic County, KS.
6. Pike's Pawnee Village Park (11 acres), White Rock Twp, Sections 2 & 3, Republic County, KS.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

James Slavens

James W. L. Slavens (1838-1905) = Civil War Veteran. Republican. Co-founder of the Women’s Christian Association. Kansas City Treasurer (1867) and Mayor (1876; 1895). He was born on August 3 in Putnam County, Indiana to Hiram B. Slavens.
James was mostly self-taught and prepared himself for college by reading many books. He entered the law profession in 1861 after he graduated from Asbury University in Indiana in 1859 with high honors.
In 1859, he married Martha (Mattie; Mary) McNutt, in Douglass County, Illinois and to this union eight children were born: five sons and three daughters.
At the outbreak of the Civil War, he enlisted in the 73rd Illinois Volunteer Regiment, serving in the Quartermaster Department under General George H. Thomas.
In the fall of 1865, James came to Jackson County, Missouri and practiced law with his brother, Luther C., for seven years. Then he became one of the first meat-packers, forming a partnership with E.C. Pattison, Wm Epperson and later J.C. Ferguson.
James was a member of the Grand Avenue Methodist Church, first organized in 1863 by Rev. A.H. Powell. A lot was purchased at the corner of 6th and Walnut to build on, but during the war, the society broke up and the lot sold. Rev. Nesley reorganized in 1865. In the late 20th century, an office building with an attached church on the east replaced the earlier, spired brick edifice dedicated by Dr. Bishop Thomas Bowman. It is located at 9th and Grand, close to the Federal Reserve Building in Kansas City.
Slaven’s financial success enabled him to donate to many charitable organizations. When he became mayor, he contributed his salary to them.
He died as the result of a stroke on February 10, 1905 at the Old Soldiers’ Home in Leavenworth, Kansas.

More to Read =
1. A Condensed History of the Kansas City Area: Its Mayors and Some V.I.P.s 1850-1950 ” Assembled by George Fuller Green. City Historian. The Lowell Press; Kansas City, MO. 1968
2. Kansas City Star, February 11, 1905.
3.  James W. L. Slavens
4. Findagrave #70168444

Places to Visit =
1. Former Mayoral Residences at 10th & Jefferson and 3016 Oak Street, Kansas City.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Long Quotes On Saints

The Child and His Heroes
By J. Jorg.

One of the most revealing commentaries on the spiritual status of families in America today is the heroes our children idolize.

The lifestyles of many of these heroes are in almost every respect contrary to that which we find taught in the Word of God. Yet they are influencing the way children respond in their homes, schools and churches. Young hearts and minds are being subtly sucked into the world's philosophies exemplified by their heroes.

The first step to directing children to right heroes is for adults to respect godly people and point out ungodly characteristics and habits in the lives of popular figures. Every hero worth emulating should be able to say with the apostle Paul, "Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ." (1 Cor. 11:1, NIV).

The second step is to introduce children to godly heroes in the Bible. A good listing is found in Hebrews 11. These people are great examples of living faith. Extra time can be spent studying the heroes in each week's Sunday School lesson. Instruct children both at home and in the classroom about the amazing works of God in the lives of these people. (See Psalm 78:1-8).

Another way to introduce children to godly heroes is through reading Christian biographies. Men like George Mueller, George Washington Carver and Jim Eliot, and women like Amy Carmichael, Fanny Crosby and Joni Eareckson Tada inspire Christians of all ages.

Plan opportunities for children to meet and associate with outstanding Christians alive today. These people may include pastors, missionaries, evangelists, Bible conference speakers, or maybe an older person in your church who walks with God and exhibits many of the qualities of Christ.

In any discussions of heroes there is always concern not to lift up people. The argument goes that men have shortcomings and may fail. The question, however, is not whether or not our children should have heroes. Youth of every generation will always find people after which to pattern their lives. The question is, who will their heroes be? Let's do all we can to help our children follow godly men and women of the past and present who will inspire them, too, to become "heroes of the faith."
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The People as Curriculum

By Norma Cook Everist,
The Church As Learning Community, 2002.

"Each time the faith community gathers, in whole or in part, also present are all the others in whom Christ in incarnate, God's people from every time and place: Madagascar, Indonesia, Chile, Chicago, or the town down the highway. The teacher becomes the learner and the learner the teacher in an interdependent global community. That is not a call for role confusion. In any given class setting, one teacher or a team of teachers will lead the group and others will primarily be learners. But the roles might be reversed in another activity. Having been together in creative ways, learners teach one another and go forth to teach. 'Contrary to all that we might experience, no learning community is ever isolated or inadequate. Whether the room is sparsely populated or crowded, the people present are significant and sufficient. At the same time, no one group is ever complete unto itself, incapable of learning from those not present in the room, or not needing the stories of God's interaction with people of centuries ago, or encounter with people very different from oneself around the world, or those who do not confess the same faith. We need each other in order to learn. If we are the curriculum, how can we learn if we keep the book of people different from ourselves closed? The curriculum incorporates the faith and life of the people in any locale, including worship, study, community, stewardship, witness, service, and social action. Reflective involvement is essential. Those who concretize the curriculum have the task of putting together a comprehensive and practical plan in light of the challenges and opportunities presented by a certain place.
The phrase, "Curriculum is God and God's people in this time and place" should not be interpreted to mean that religious education is simply a matter of like-minded people gathering to do things they enjoy together. That would exclude real challenge and real growth. Nor, as we have seen, do the emphases on the here and now, the local, or the contemporary church exclude the historic, global church. By no means. The latter are essential if the local church is to encounter the activity of a God who engages people in every time and every place. In the complexity, even in the midst of the confusion and controversy of diverse people who do not understand one another, God has created and will sustain community, thereby creating a living curriculum – one which we will never complete, but one which is real. God is in the center of this concept of church as a learning community with all of God's creating, redeeming, and liberating activity."

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The Circuit Rider

George T. Ashley.

"He was thoroughly consecrated and devoted to his work. His sole equipment usually consisted of a horse, saddle and a pair of saddlebags – now a rare sight indeed- in which he placed most of his earthly possessions, usually consisting of but one change of clothing, a Bible, a hymnbook, and possibly a few tracts; and maybe a few books to sell. His home was on his horse and among the people whom he served.
Thus he went from place to place, from village to village, from settlement to settlement, from house to house, preaching every Sunday, sometimes two or three times; and almost every night in the week at one of the larger homes in the remote settlements; preaching to and praying with a mere handful of people; burying the dead when occasion called for it; holding prayer and giving admonition at every house at which he stopped. The circuit usually required a month to get around in this way; and then the circuit rider would at once start again.
The circuit riders met once a year in "Conference" to discuss their previous year's work, to lay plans for the next year's work to re-assign the preachers to their circuits and to discuss their many common and often perplexing problems. At that time, no circuit rider rode the same circuit more than one year in succession. Thus the various talents among them were widely distributed and shared among all the people.
With increasing population, better roads and better means of transportation, the circuits were gradually diminished in area from a preaching point almost every day in the month down to a circuit of six or eight places, usually close enough together for him to preach to two separate congregations each Sunday; then down to four churches in a circuit; and now in most places to the "Station" where the minister serves but one congregation." 

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If God can Use These Saints. . .
then surely he can use me!

* A Liar named Abram to father his new nation;
* A Murderer named Moses to liberate them;
* An Adulterer named David to lead them;
* A Deserter named Peter to nurture his lambs;
* And a Church Killer named Saul to build his church.

~ Sid Cox, Stumbling Into Grace.

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The Heart of a Saint
Bert Ghezzi
“Amid their vast diversity, one commonality stands out: they (saints) share the same heart—a heart set on loving God above all. The heart is that deep place at the core of our being where we make the choices that direct and orient our lives. At some point every one of the saints made a heartfelt decision to put God first in his or her life. . . Holiness is not the narrowly guarded privilege of a few, but rather an abundantly available opportunity for all. Here’s the point: we can become saints if we want. All we must do is choose to be holy, and the Holy Spirit will make it happen. And because making us saints is God’s work, we don’t have to be without problems, faults, or even sins. All of the saints, including the apostles, were sinners, just like you and me. . . Holiness does not come from staying busy with Christian activities. It is a matter of the heart, a matter of falling in love with God. “