Wednesday, November 30, 2011

THREE BRIDGES first Christmas Album, "Christmas Must Be Tonight" - (Full Album Stream)

Franklin, TN- Mansion Entertainment: Three Bridges, renowned for tight harmonies and intricate arrangements, has produced their first Christmas Album with Mansion Entertainment incorporating these familiar aspects and you can now listen to the entire album FREE, for a limited time!

Their blended style of southern gospel & black gospel, along with their unique vocal style permeates this recording from the initial title cut "Christmas Must Be Tonight" and concluding with the unique song "Louisiana Christmas".

Bill Traylor, President of Mansion Entertainment, indicates, "This will be a classic Christmas recording that everyone will enjoy".

To listen to the entire album FREE, visit our Facebook page and click the “like” button for exclusive access to the album for this holiday season!

Two-Time Dove Award nominees fall victim to Thanksgiving theft

The Marksmen Quartet of Murrayville, Ga. were stranded when their white Ford travel van, white enclosed Country Boy trailer and all their instruments, costumes and equipment were stolen, according to Earle Wheeler, group leader.
The multi award-winning group were traveling Thanksgiving weekend to perform at the annual Myrtle Beach Bluegrass Festival in South Carolina when they stopped about 12:30 for an overnight stay Nov. 25 at the Quality Inn on Dunbarton Drive in Florence, he said.
When the group came out at 7:30 a.m. the next morning they found their vehicle gone and the five men left standing there figuring out how to reach their performance and how they would perform it without their instruments.
“Needless to say we were surprised by the predicament,” Wheeler said. “But there is a reason for everything under heaven.”
He said that the outpouring of support for the group when they reached their destination was such a blessing.
“The bluegrass folks have been so good to us,” he said. “Other performers loaned us their instruments to do the shows. Many supporters have reached out to help us financially because the future is still uncertain as to how we will replace everything that was taken. Like any music ministry we rely on those that support our efforts.”
One of the regular means of support is by consumers purchasing product from their concert table or website but the theft took away hundreds of CDs, DVDs as well as specialized display racks and materials, he said.
Wheeler formed the group in 1967 and after 44 years on the road, the quartet which currently records for Rural Rhythm is one of the most awarded country and bluegrass gospel groups performing today (
After the group arranged transportation to reach their performances, the police located their vehicle in Berkeley County, SC left in a disabled condition, Wheeler said.
“There was no trailer, instruments, sound equipment, or stage costumes, boots or other items to be found,” he said. "I have yet to see the van but they tell me they have done damage that makes it undrivable."
Inside the van, the police did recover Wheeler’s Bible.
“That’s the one thing they probably really needed to keep,” Wheeler said. “We were driving the van and trailer while we looked for a 25,500 gross vehicle weight bus to travel in. Costs of operating a larger bus have made it difficult to keep one on the road.”
Lead singer and songwriter Mark Wheeler said losing one’s instrument is like losing an extension of you.
“Many of these were specially made for us, in fact two cannot even be replaced because they were the first or a one-of-a-kind,” he said. “We hope that the authorities will locate the instruments but even if they don’t, we will do our best with whatever the Lord provides.”
Among the stolen instruments with cases are: 2008 Mossman Texas Plains guitar with mahogany sides and back and a big sound hole serial number 08078; a 1991 Mossman Texas Plains guitar with rosewood sides and back and a serial number beginning with 91; a 1999 Mossman Wheeler Gospel all mahogany guitar with serial number 990506; a one-of-a-kind late 1990s Mossman resonator guitar all mahogany with F holes with no serial number; a 1973 Gibson Mastertone banjo, and a blonde Engelhardt upright bass model number em1b with serial number  91443.
If anyone has information on whereabouts of the trailer or the band’s equipment they should contact, the Florence Police Department 843-676-8800 or the South Carolina Crime Stoppers hotline at 888-CRIME SC (274-6372). Callers need not reveal their identities.
If anyone wishes to assist the Marksmen Quartet, their mailing address is 1312 Post White Hill Road, Murrayville, Ga. 30564 or their office number is (706) 864-2951.

Nashville Celebrates 75 Years of Great Chuck Wagon Gang Music

Nashville, TN: Saturday afternoon, fans from all over the Country gathered in Nashville, TN at the world famous Earnest Tubb Record Shop to be a part of a weekend long celebration honoring the music and career of The Chuck Wagon Gang. This past Friday, November 25 marked the 75th Anniversary of the group’s first recording. In recognition of this historic occasion, WSM Radio and the Ernest Tubb Record Shop hosted a live appearance by The Chuck Wagon Gang. WSM broadcasted the hour and a half event as the Gang performed songs that have contributed to over 40 million records sold world-wide.

Their next stop was later that night when they opened the legendary radio show, “The Midnight Jamboree” on WSM Radio. There were two more middle Tennessee concerts on Sunday and the Nashville celebration ended up on Monday evening in the Ford Theater inside The Country Music Hall of Fame. They took center stage as the featured artist on “An Intimate Evening with Eddie Stubbs”. The 2 hour WSM Radio broadcast (Going to 35 states and Canada) featured an in depth interview and live performances of songs from the past 75 years. Eddie Stubbs who has been known for yearsas “The

Voice of The Grand Ole Opry” commented, “In all my years of doing this show, this is the first act to receive that many standing ovations and the first to bring me to tears”.

The Chuck Wagon Gang is currently working on a documentary to mark their 75 years of music that will
be a must have item for all Chuck Wagon Gang fans and traditional American music lovers.

Seven-state Christmas tour begins this weekend

Critically-acclaimed singer/songwriter Peder Eide will launch his 14th annual Christmas tour this weekend.  The 16-show tour entitled “Live Like Christmas” will take Eide and his band (pictured right) to seven different states, including Wisconsin, North Dakota, Illinois, Indiana, Nebraska, Michigan and culminating Christmas Eve in Colorado.  Eide will be singing songs from his two critically-acclaimed Christmas CDs, Perfect Surprise and Christmas: Come On In.  When it was released two years ago, Perfect Surprise was chosen as a favorite Christmas CD by USA Today.

Peder will be joined by special guest, comedian Daren Streblow, at the December 14 concert in Fargo, North Dakota.  Eide and Streblow recently teamed up to record a parody tune called “The Donut Song” set to the music of “Sleigh Ride.”  Eide will join Streblow on his new syndicated radio show releasing in late December.

Eide just released his 14th studio recording entitled Rescue and is donating a portion of the proceeds of the sale of the CD to the Highly Vulnerable Children’s Fund via Compassion International.  The fund is specifically for children who have been orphaned or have severely ill parents, as well as for kids who are at high risk for exploitation or abuse.  Eide has been a Compassion artist for over 14 years, acquiring thousands of sponsors for the non-profit organization.

In addition to his contributions to Compassion, Eide is an adoption advocate, having adopted two orphans into his own family from overseas.  Eide and wife Sherri adopted their daughter Makenzie from Korea in 2004.  Then, four years later, they brought home a little boy named Teshome from Ethiopia.  Along with their older children -- 15-year-old Taylor, 11-year-old Allison and 10-year-old Ethan-- the Eides are clear that their decision to adopt was one of the "best decisions" they ever made.

Eide regularly performs for over 100,000 people each year, having played main stages at music festivals such as Sonshine (MN), Kingdom Bound (NY), Lifest (WI), LifeLight (SD) and Spirit West Coast (CA). He has shared the stage with artists such as the MercyMe, Jeremy Camp, TobyMac, Hawk Nelson, Third Day, among others.

Eide's original "Taste Worship" events continue to be scheduled year-round at various churches and conferences.  It is geared toward bringing parents together with their tweens and teenagers in an interactive worship environment.  Coupling music with teaching, Eide offers families practical "ingredients" to create a worship-filled lifestyle. 

Eide has been featured on several national television shows and radio programs including The 700 Club program on CBN, FamilyNet, Daystar network, LeSea network, Cornerstone television, and Focus on the Family’s Weekend Magazine radio show. Eide has been involved with groups such as Youth Ministry Network, Youth Unlimited, Navigators, Youth for Christ, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Youth Encounter, and other events. Eide has been honored by the Minnesota Jaycees as one of their prestigious "Ten Outstanding Young Minnesotans."

For more information and a complete list of tour dates, visit

Sherry Surratt Named President and CEO of MOPS International

DENVER,  The Board of MOPS International has elected Sherry A. Surratt as the organization's fourth President and CEO. Surratt will assume the position on January 1, 2012, succeeding Shelly Radic, who has served as the Interim CEO during the past 18 months. The MOPS International Board was aided in the search process by Price Harding, III, a managing partner of CarterBaldwin Executive Search of Atlanta, Georgia. Surratt comes to MOPS with deep experience in church ministry and learning from women leaders. Her most recent position was the Director of Leadership Network's Radical Future Innovation Labs.

Board chair Rebekah Burch Basinger describes MOPS' new President as a woman of warm personal faith and a passion for bringing God's good news to young moms. "Sherry's ministry background is noteworthy, but board members are most excited by her deep commitment to Christ and strong desire to have a part in influencing a generation of young mothers for the sake of the Gospel," Basinger says.

Mark Hopkins, chair of the search committee, credits Surratt's wide-ranging contacts with pastors and other church leaders as placing her at the top of the candidate list. Now, the MOPS Board looks forward to what Surratt's networks and focus on women in ministry leadership can mean for the organization.

"In addition to her contacts with churches across the country, the insights Sherry brings from her work with Leadership Network will be invaluable as MOPS seeks to be even more entrepreneurial in how we partner with local congregations and other like-minded organizations in ministry to mothers of preschoolers. Sherry has the skill set to build on the foundation of what MOPS is already accomplishing and the imagination to lead MOPS into a bright future," Hopkins states.

"MOPS is moving into an exciting new chapter, and we are eager that the organization step into this next stage faithfully and boldly. These are challenging times, but MOPS is poised to do great things. It is in this type of climate that God calls uniquely gifted leaders to face the future with courage 'for such a time as this' (Esther 4:14). We are confident Sherry is that leader for MOPS," Basinger says.

For her part, Surratt credits the organization's unwavering passion for equipping the next generation of moms as what drew her to MOPS. "God has filled my heart with an incredible excitement about the future of MOPS, as together we build on their strong foundation of supporting and encouraging moms across the world. I look forward with great anticipation to what God has in store as we equip and inspire an ever widening circle of moms to use their influence for Christ," Surratt states.

A graduate of Sam Houston State University, Surratt began her career as an elementary school teacher in the Houston (TX) Public School system. Very quickly, she moved into an administrative position as Assistant Principal over teacher development curriculum. After relocating with her pastor husband to South Carolina, Surratt joined the staff at Seacoast Church based in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina, as Children's Ministry Pastor and Central Support Pastor, developing multisite ministries at their 13 campuses.

In 2009, Surratt accepted a position with Leadership Network, where she spent 18 months researching women in leadership and hosting leadership communities of women leaders. Most recently, she has helped church pastors and leaders implement new ideas in ministry as Director of Leadership Network's Radical Future Innovation Labs, a unique experience designed to help church teams infuse new ideas into existing ministry areas.

Surratt and her husband Geoff are parents of two adult children, Mike and Brittainy, and the proud grandparents of one-year-old Maggie Claire.

MOPS will feature more about the organization's new President and CEO in the Spring 2012 edition of MomSense magazine. Surratt will also be introduced at the 2012 MOPS International Convention in Dallas, TX in August 2012.

Denver-based MOPS International is a non-profit ministry that creates mothering communities to help "Better Moms Make A Better World." Moms attend MOPS groups to experience authentic friendship, receive mothering support, and to grow personally and spiritually. Since 1973, MOPS International has served millions of mothers of preschoolers in thousands of local MOPS groups across the U.S. and in almost 40 countries internationally. MOPS serves moms from all walks of life and exists to encourage, equip and develop every mother to realize her potential as a woman, mother and leader. MOPS is the best in the world at creating authentic communities of growth that invite women into a relationship with Jesus Christ. -- -- --

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

LifeWay and ROAR to Develop Free Mobile Apps for 1,000 Churches

NASHVILLE, Nov. 29, 2011  LifeWay Christian Resources and ROAR, a mobile app development group, are giving mobile church apps to 1,000 churches throughout the month of December.

ROAR, LifeWay's recommended church app development partner, will customize mobile apps on the platform of the church's choice. Church leaders can choose either iPhone/iPad, Android, or both.

The mobile apps will feature customizable logos, colors and content.

"We can collect all of the content on a church's website and from other pages -- Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, blogs, iTunes -- and package it together in an app so people can find it all in one place on their phone," said Matt McKee, president of ROAR.

"Churches can upload audio sermons as podcasts, post calendar events and event details, upload photos from church events or mission trips, create separate pages for separate ministries and allow people to donate to the church from their mobile devices," said Matt Morris, project manager for LifeWay's Digital Church.

Developing an app usually costs approximately $750 per platform per church, McKee said. As part of the giveaway, churches will only have to pay a discounted hosting fee of $30 per month for one app or $50 for two platforms.

"We want to resource 1,000 churches with this technology," Morris said. "Churches will be able to communicate their messages to people through a device that's almost always in their pocket or purse."

Recent Pew Research data from July 2011 stated nine in 10 smartphone owners use their phones to access the Internet or email.

"As the number of smartphone users continues to increase, churches can't deny that communicating through a church app connects with people on-the-go," said Morris.

Learn more about getting a free mobile app developed for your church at

Digital Church is a collection of web-based resources and services that assists churches in efficiently and effectively managing growth within their church, congregation and community. Digital Church endorses select, top-tier solutions in the cloud to help both churches and ministries reach people for Christ.

Launched in January 2010, ROAR has quickly become one of the top app development firms for churches, schools and ministries.


The guests on the current edition of Gospel Music Today are The Hyssongs and Red Roots. The Feature Group is 1 Voice, and Ken and Jean Grady host southern gospel news and concert updates. Ken and Jean visit The Southern Gospel Worship Gathering, in Broken Arrow, OK,  to hear Donnie Sumner sing. Jean reviews a new CD by Hope's Journey, and the show features singing by Still Water Quartet and The Ascension Quartet. The latest show is online now at the Gospel Music Today website.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Southern Plainsmen Named Gospel Gold Artist of the Year at 2011 Harvest Music Festival

HORNBECK, La. – (November 28, 2011) – West-Central Louisiana’s Southern Plainsmen were recently honored 2011 Harvest Music Festival. The group was named the 2011 “Gospel Gold Artist of the Year.”

“God has given us many wonderful and humbling gifts this year, including this new award,” mentioned Marcelle Slaughter of the Southern Plainsmen. “We have to give special thanks to everyone who cast a vote for us. We are truly honored by this wonderful gift that you have given us.”

The “Gospel Gold Artist of the Year” Award was handed out as a part of the Harvest Music Festival which was held this past November 10-12, 2011 in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee at the Music Road Hotel and Convention Center.

In addition to this award, the Southern Plainsmen Quartet were recently inducted into the North Louisiana Gospel Music Hall of Fame. On Friday evening, October 21, 2011, the Southern Plainsmen received this career high at the induction ceremony, which took place at The Pentecostals of the Twin Cities in West Monroe, Louisiana.

Earlier this year, the Southern Plainsmen were honored by the South Texas Gospel Music Association (STGMA) at the organization’s annual event.  The Southern Plainsmen were named this year’s Group of the Year. In addition, baritone vocalist Allen Doyle was named the 2011 Male Vocalist of the Year.

For more information on the Southern Plainsmen, visit their website at .  You can also visit the group on Facebook at .

About the Southern Plainsmen
The Southern Plainsmen were organized in May 1978 in the rolling pine-hills of West-Central Louisiana, and is an outreach of the Southern Plainsmen Ministries, Inc., a non-profit Christian organization.  The group has released 20 recordings in its impressive 30 years history.  The group currently consists of Marcelle Slaughter, Allen Doyle, and Aaron Allen. The group’s current release – Simply…Faith! released in 2009.

The Father's Tale 'Like a Thousand Sunrises'

SAN FRANCISCO, Nov. 28, 2011  Canadian bestselling author and iconographer Michael O'Brien has a body of work overflowing with critical acclaim. That fact makes his newest book, The Father's Tale, even more compelling in light of initial reviews that clearly mark this epic as his best work ever.

"This is a magnum opus in quality as well as quantity," said Dr. Peter Kreeft of Boston College, author of You Can Understand the Bible. "When you finish The Father's Tale you will say of it what Tolkein said of The Lord of the Rings: 'It has one fault; it is too short.' A thousand pages of Michael O'Brien is like a thousand sunrises: who's complaining?"

"Michael O'Brien's achievement here is, I think, titanic," said Thomas Howard, author of Dove Descending: T.S. Eliot's Four Quartets. The Father's Tale is available now from Ignatius Press.

O'Brien himself calls this work "a modern retelling of the parables of The Good Shepherd and The Prodigal Son." He has a string of bestselling books to his credit, including Father Elijah: An Apocalypse; Strangers and Sojourners; Eclipse of the Sun; and several others.

O'Brien is also a highly regarded iconographer whose works have been commissioned by churches and museums. His images include Jesus Christ the Word of Life, St. John Vianney, St. Maximillian Kolbe and The Finding in the Temple.

In The Father's Tale, O'Brien introduces readers to Canadian bookseller Alex Graham, a middle-aged widower whose small-town life had gone smoothly - or so he once believed - until his college-aged son disappears from a British school. Graham leaves his safe, orderly world for the first time and embarks on a perilous journey to search for his son that takes him to Russia and beyond, pulled ever deeper into world conflicts as well as the eternal conflict between good and evil.

10 Tips for Setting a Beautiful Holiday Table

By Roxanne Hughes Packham,
Co-Author of the Hospitality Book: Inspired Design

In today’s rough economic climate, keep in mind that although I hope to inspire you to set a beautiful Thanksgiving or Christmas table the real beauty comes from the thought and love you show your friends and family. Beautiful tables comprise equal parts from the “Inspired” & the “Design” categories. See examples:
~Place cards
I love to use the ceramic place cards that can be written on with a wipe-off marker. You can quickly write people’s names, a favorite quote or sentiment. Friends love that you thought about them before the dinner and even something as simple as writing their names on the place cards really makes them feel remembered.
~Welcome Sign
It is so welcoming, to have a sign somewhere near the front door to greet your family and friends. From a very personal “Welcome Smith Family” or a seasonal “Merry Christmas” to “We are so glad you are here” on a casual chalkboard or an elegant mirror or glass framed, and write with a wipe-off marker, that welcome sets the tone for the rest of the event.  I used an antique French cupboard door and painted it with chalkboard paint on the raised panel part.
~Quote or Scripture
The most inspirational part of the Holiday table is the beautiful quotes and scriptures. It depends on the occasion, but a quote that is either inspiring or focused on gratitude is the favorite. There is nothing like feasting your eyes, and then your thoughts, on what we can be thankful for, especially as an example for our children. Scattering them around the home (powder room, end tables, above door jam’s) is a great way to elevate your family and friends thoughts.
~Fresh Greenery
Sometimes we mistakenly think a tabletop has to have flowers as a centerpiece to be really elegant and festive. Greenery is a wonderful, fresh and festive way to make a beautiful Christmas table. Simply cut a few small twigs of trees/bushes like pine or ivy, or my favorite boxwood branches, bay tree and magnolia leaves and put them in three smaller glass or crystal vases. 
No table is complete, in my opinion, with 5 to 7 little glass votives with white candles in them. The light sparkles and makes everything else on the table more beautiful and sets a soft, relaxing, often more romantic tone.
~Seasonal Piece
By seasonal I suggest a “Santa” figurine or such, a gingerbread house, or a standing cross to have in the center of the table. A clear jar of candy canes, M&M’s or such would do just fine, as well. Think: Something available only at this time of year. I usually have plenty of items in the Holiday Decor that I switch out to put on the table for each dinner.
~Napkin Rings
These can be such a pretty way to pull a linen napkin through to set on a place and make a really beautiful table setting. You can use french ribbons, or plain silver rings and they help to really make a bigger impact for an inspiring table.
~Sparkling Glasses
Whether crystal or glass, tall freshly washed glass sparkle so much with the votive candles that it is hard to wrong with this combo. A tall glass and short glass of whatever kind you like is very dramatic and beautiful, set together. Whether colored or clear the sparkle is crucial for the holiday table.
~White Plates
Although I love to use seasonal chargers and salad plates a crisp white plate is the most beautiful element to my favorite tables. They can be dressed up or down, and makes each setting look fresh and not heavy and overdone. 
~Seasonal Linens
Of course, linen napkins add the most wonderful touch of elegance to any table, and Christmas plaid or red and green are no exception. My grandfather, who was a “Silversmith to the Stars”, loved a bare table with only plates (or placemats) but wasn’t a fan of covering a beautiful wood table. I have followed suit. Try leaving the wood table bare! The natural elements together is beautiful and simple.
“I tell you, the more I think, the more I feel that there is nothing more truly artistic than to love people.” ~ Vincent Van Gogh

Paul & Melissa Ladd (The Ladd Family) Announce Birth of New Daughter

ROCK HILL, S.C. – (November 28, 2011) – Emerging Southern Gospel duo The Ladd Family are proud to announce the birth of Violet Marie Ladd. Violet was born to parents Paul and Melissa Ladd on October 27, 2011 at 11:14 p.m.

Violet weighed 7 lbs 15 oz and was 20 ¾ in long. Baby Violet is doing exceptionally well and is joined by big brother Elijah.

“We appreciate everyone’s thoughts and prayers for our family,” mentioned Paul Ladd. “Melissa didn’t have the easiest of pregnancies, and we believe that God’s grace saw her through the birth of baby Violet thanks to the prayers that went up on behalf of our family over the last few months.”

The Ladd Family will resume traveling again on December 31, 2011 in Carroll, Ohio at River of Life Church.

For more information on baby Violet and all of the Ladd Family, visit them online at

You can also keep up with the group on social network sites like Facebook ( and MySpace (

About The Ladd Family
The Ladd Family is an anointed family ministry with strong Christian roots. They began more than 35 years ago when John and Violet Ladd felt the call of God on their lives and began to travel singing and preaching the gospel with their children. Today the family tradition carries on with Paul and his wife Melissa. God has brought this dynamic husband and wife team through the fire and back in order to truly minister from the heart. They have earned three Diamond Award nominations and scored a #1 hit on the Top 40 Fan Chart with their single “Let Go.”

First Ever Virtual Christmas Choir Being Assembled for Christmas Eve

MORRISTOWN, NJ, Nov. 28, 2011 Liquid Church of New Jersey is inviting individuals from around the world to participate via webcams and YouTube in the first ever Christmas Virtual Choir for Christmas Eve services. Whether they're soldiers in the Middle East, moms in Estonia or students in Phoenix, Arizona, the church will leverage technology to synchronize individual singers into a unified choir rendition of Silent Night.

"We're creating a unique experience for singers across the globe to come together as one voice this Christmas," said Tim Lucas, Lead Pastor of the New Jersey-based Christian church.

Singers are given access to sheet music, music tracks and a video-recorded conductor so that anyone can record and upload their singing part to YouTube. Liquid Church's media team will then assemble a composite video production that integrates all of the individual singers into one large-scale synchronized video rendering for the Christmas Virtual Choir event.

Participation in the Christmas Virtual Choir is open to everyone around the globe, not just the 2,000 weekly attendees in New Jersey, and thousands more who routinely visit Liquid's website and Church Online campus.

The deadline for those who want to participate in the choir is December 15th.

Instructions are available at

The Christmas Virtual Choir's performance will held at six live Christmas Eve services in New Jersey on December 24th held by Liquid Church. Free event tickets are available at 

The Dills Southern Gospel Radio Rewind (2007)


By Sandi Duncan-Clark

As Christians, we know that nothing happens by accident, however, Tim and Shawn Dill
realize that their music ministry originated almost by accident. “Of course it was not an
accident, because all things are ordered by God, but we really didn’t set out to have a
Gospel group,” Tim Dill told us. “When Shawn and I were very young; as young as five
and six, we sang with our parents at church.”

Then, according to the men, God began to work in their lives. “Shawn began playing the
piano when he was seven and a while later at age seven, I began playing drums for the
family group and we started singing at more places,” Tim stated.

He continued, “Then about thirteen or fourteen years ago, Bridget and LeeAnn began
going with the family when we sang. LeeAnn and Shawn got married first, and then
Bridget and I got married. As we continued to sing, both LeeAnn and Bridget started
singing with us, and our concerts would be half with Mom and Dad and half with the
four of us performing. Four years ago Mom and Dad retired from traveling. Now Bridget,
LeeAnn, Shawn and myself as well as Shawn and LeeAnn’s two children, make up the
current group.”

This past year, 2006, has been an outstanding one for this Jackson, Tennessee family.
They book approximately 125 dates each year, traveling throughout the east coast.

“We really enjoy having the children with us and we watch diligently the days they miss
school,” LeeAnn said. “We try to book Friday, Saturday and two dates for Sunday, so
that they can go with us. If we do more than that, we leave them with my parents or
Shawn’s parents. They have always traveled with us.”

Bridget added, “On a recent trip, I had laryngitis and nine year old Kaela filled in for me.
She knows every word to every song and did an outstanding job. We are so proud of both
Kaela and thirteen year old Logan.”

The goal and mission of The Dills is to win people to Christ. LeeAnn said, “We try to
share with our audience that God loves them and life can be on the upside with God as
part of their life.”

“We have been praying for God to broaden our booking areas so that we can reach more
people for the Lord,” Tim stated.

Growing up in a Christian family and working in the church has been a strong influence
in the music and ministry of The Dills. Through that background, group members learned
early, to depend on God for his leadership. The Dills also look to God when choosing the
songs on their programs and their recordings. Their latest project is titled “Faith,” and has
eleven great songs.

Bridget stated, “We listen to a lot of music before we record, and we all feel that if a song
touches our hearts, then it will speak to the hearts of others.”

“I Am Redeemed” was the first song shipped to Gospel radio from their current
recording. It was followed by “That’s What He Gave To Me” and in January,
2007 “Jesus Never Fails” went out to radio on CD from the Rick Hendrix Company.

The Dills are currently previewing songs for a new recording. “We have songs from a lot
of writers and we’re excited about the music,” Tim said. “We’ve had a lot of people ask
for something with praise and worship music. We want to choose some songs that will
appeal to the cross-section of ages of the people who come to our services and concerts.”

When the Dills perform, Bridget, LeeAnn and Tim are the front-line, with Shawn playing
keyboards. “Shawn is an outstanding tenor singer and he joins us on several songs. I do
the Emcee work, and any one of the group will give their testimony during the service,”
Tim said. “We firmly believe in allowing God to have complete charge of the service, so
we all are sensitive to His will. We also remember that we are there to sing, and that’s
what we do.”

The Dills are comfortable in any concert setting. “We sing in a lot of churches and in
various concert promotions,” Shawn said. Tim picked up the conversation, “We enjoy
meeting other groups and singing with other artists. We had an outstanding time at the
National Quartet Convention in September last year. We sang on several showcases and
enjoyed the fellowship with other artists and with the fans.”

When it comes to harmony, there is nothing quite as exciting as close family harmony.
When you hear the Dills you will enjoy that harmony and you will experience the
excitement they feel in ministering through their music.

“We are sold out to our music ministry, and we want to share our love for the Lord with
everyone who comes to our concerts,” Tim stated. “This makes all the miles we travel
worth it.”

The Dills are performing for the first time on the Jubilee at Sea cruise with Templeton
Tours in February. Bridget and Leeann agree, “This is an exciting venture for the group
and we’re taking a lot of our fans. The children are going with us on the cruise and they
are REALLY excited!”

The Dills’ booking is done in-house by calling 731-988-5046. You can also visit their
website at for a list of their concert dates and to order their music. Take
it from me, you will be blessed by the music of this family!

If you enjoyed this story find more at

Crossroads Entertainment & Marketing launches Skyland Records

Arden, NC - November 28, 2011 - Crossroads Entertainment & Marketing, a recognized leader in the Southern Gospel industry, is launching Skyland Records. Skyland will offer emerging Southern Gospel artists access to Crossroads' award-winning studio production team, professional marketing and radio promotion, and worldwide physical and digital music distribution.

Skyland A&R Representative Jeff Collins says, "Skyland Records focuses on helping tomorrow's top artists move to new levels in their music ministry. In order to build a presence in the marketplace, you have to have the right production, promotion, and distribution. Skyland will help artists build a viable music ministry with these three crucial elements."

The first Skyland release, Tell the Story by Vintage Quartet (Archdale, NC), releases on December 20, 2011. Their first radio single, "I'm Gonna Tell the Story," releases to radio this month.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

8th Annual USAGEM Awards A Huge Success

EHA-Nashville, TN --The televised 8th Annual USAGEM Awards Show was held on Saturday November 19, 2011 at the historic Texas Troubadour Theatre in Nashville , Tennessee .  The three hour show was filmed by Fresh Well Media for future television broadcasts on the Family Friendly Entertainment Network.

Appropriately, Melanie Walker opened the show with a flawless performance of her upbeat, hand-clapping song, “Walking In Jerusalem”.   

The Fox Brothers were the hosts of the show and kept the show moving with introductions of performers and presenters by means of their own brand of humor and wit.  They garnered three awards including the Gospel Entertainer Of The Year, Vocal Group Of The Year, and the Christian Country Crown Jewel Award.  Group member and funnyman, Roy Fox received the Comedian Of The Year award.  The Fox Brothers closed the show with their popular rendition of an American patriotic favorite, “God Bless The USA”.

Members of the popular southern gospel singing group, The Gardners accepted three awards including the Song Of The Year accolades for their song “Sign Me Up”. They also received the Southern Gospel Crown Jewel Award. Group member Regina Gardner was the recipient of the coveted Female Vocalist Of The Year Award.

One emotional highlight of the show was the awarding of the organization’s most prestigious honor, The Diamond Award to USAGEM’s past president and Pearly Gates members, Daniel and Teresa Johnson.  This award is a lifetime achievement honor presented to USAGEM members who show a great commitment to God, Christian service, and dedication to USAGEM.  A further emotional highlight was the presentation of the Sapphire Award to Don Inks for his behind the scenes work and devotion to the USAGEM organization.  Don is the husband and manager of Christian country artist, Peggy Inks. The Emerald Award was presented to Kent Smith Family member and founder, Kent Smith; and the Ruby Award went to television producer and radio host, Tommie Lewis.

The Male Vocalist Of The Year Award was presented to one of the organization’s perennial favorites, Rene Jones.  He and his wife, Edie Jones presented an impeccable performance of their brand new Christian Country chart single, “Bible By Her Bed”.

Danny Jones did a superb performance of his self-penned song “Dream Giver”, a song featured in the upcoming faith-based movie “Secrets In The Snow”.  Jones also garnered the Contemporary Christian Crown Jewel Award, his very first USAGEM trophy.

Newcomer, Russ Murphy had the enthusiastic crowd on their feet as he performed his hit single and patriotic song “My America” and comedian nominee Cheryl Jackson performed a very impressive stand-up comedy routine which had everyone laughing with her side-splitting, hilarious wit.

The Duo Of The Year Award was presented for the second time to Lewis & Lewis; The Musician Of The Year accolades went to Nashville producer and pianist, John Rees; The Accoustic Singer/Songwriter Of The Year was awarded to Christian country singer and songwriter, Ann Hartmann; The New Artist Of The Year honors went to new southern gospel group, The Davis Family; The Black Gospel Crown Jewel was awarded to television host and singer, Dewitt Johnson; and bluegrass group Leipers Fork Bluegrass were first time recipients of the Bluegrass Crown Jewel Award.

Charlene Harrison’s very stirring presentation of “How Great Thou Art”, and For Heaven’s Sake’s very powerful performance of “God’s Still Faithful” left the crowd wanting more.  Sandi Kay & New Hickory once again brought the house down with their intricate bluegrass picking and singing as they performed “I Can See Clearly Now”.

More performance highlights included several featured special performances.  New Artist nominees Allison Speer, Mark Brown, David Smith, Paul Sparks, Sunday Edition, and The Davis Family received a standing ovation for their moving and powerful performance of “Because He Lives”, a song made famous by the legendary Speer Family.  Song Of The Year nominees Glenn Tubb, The Pearly Gates, Tank Tackett, Joe Arview and Thunder, and The Gardners each proudly and flawlessly performed a portion of their top five nominated songs.  Musician nominees Shelton Bissell, Jim Frable, John Rees, and Jay Shupe performed an upbeat “I’ll Fly Away” while young USAGEM members Summer & Autumn Ryan performed their clogging routine, a bonus delight to audience members.

As a special highlight this year, in order to commemorate the addition of the Acoustic Singer/Songwriter Of The Year Award, a special songwriter’s round was featured and included performances by the top five nominees.  Ann Hartmann, Daniel Johnson, Glenn Tubb, Tammy Vice, and Jimmy Jack Whitaker each performed a portion of one of their favorite self-penned songs.  During this performance, a surprise special guest appearance by Nashville songwriter, Wood Newton added a special flavor to this already great songwriter’s collaboration.  Wood has written many hit songs including “Bobbie Sue” made famous by The Oak Ridge Boys.

Bev McCann performed a very touching tribute to respected USAGEM member and award winner Amanda Fessant, who passed away earlier this year after a long battle with cancer.  She was only 34 years old.  Bev performed a medley of songs of Amanda’s favorite gospel hymns including “Amazing Grace”, “I Surrender All”, and “This World Is Not My Home”.

Special segment hosts were Rev. Harry Yates, Joanne Cash Yates, Peggy Inks, and Melanie Walker. Some award presenters were Brian & Allison Speer; media representative, Evie Hawkins; Mona Faith and Rev. Gene Fant; Don and Sandra Lee Burdick; Last Chance members James Burns and Mark Fuqua; and David Smith of the duo, David & Carrie Smith.  Other presenters included Stephen Fryar; Marty Merchant; Darlene Chapman; Tommie Lewis; Roger Revette; Sheila Berry; Jim Babcock; Laura Mathy; Kent Smith; Ray Lewis; Dottie Tubb; and The Toneys.

The USAGEM Awards Show is a production of the United States Association Of Gospel Entertainers & Musicians, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.  For more information please visit or 

Below is a full list of 2011 USAGEM award winners.

Gospel Entertainer Of The Year: The Fox Brothers
Male Vocalist Of The Year: Rene Jones
Female Vocalist Of The Year: Regina Gardner
Duo Of The Year: Lewis & Lewis
Group Of The Year: The Fox Brothers
Song Of The Year: “Sign Me Up” by The Gardners
Acoustic Singer/Songwriter Of The Year: Ann Hartmann
New Artist Of The Year: The Davis Family
Musician Of The Year: John Rees
Comedian Of The Year: Roy Fox
Diamond Award: Daniel & Teresa Johnson
Emerald Award: Tommie Lewis
Ruby Award: Kent Smith
Sapphire Award: Don Inks
Southern Gospel Crown Jewel Award: The Gardners
Contemporary Christian Crown Jewel Award: Danny Jones
Christian Country Crown Jewel Award: The Fox Brothers
Black Gospel Crown Jewel Award: Dewitt Johnson
Bluegrass Crown Jewel Award: Leipers Fork Bluegrass


Salty Earth Pictures, Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin is counting it’s many blessing this Thanksgiving. The studio’s independent feature “Journey to Paradise” is in distribution this Christmas season. The 120 minute feature film can be found at many retailers include Family Christian Stores, Lifeway, and more. The original music from the motion pictures is also available on a Christmas CD produced by Michael Schroeder. “Journey to Paradise” is based on the novel “The Christmas Edition” written by Robin Shope. To learn more, please visit Salty Earth Pictures’ Studio Store at:
You can view a portion of the movie that incorporates Michael Schroeder’s song “The Reason for the Season” at this link:

Salty Earth Pictures is also very thankful to be able to announce plans to begin work on the next feature motion picture. The movie will be based on the novel “The Chase” written by Susan Wales and Robin Shope. Steve Zambo, president of Salty Earth Pictures, says “We have been wanting to produce “The Chase” for many years. Susan Wales and I first discussed it several years ago. We feel the time is right, with God’s help, to produce this exciting novel into a motion picture.” Author Susan Wales sates, “I really think this is a match made in Heaven for Salty Earth Pictures to do this film. It will be a big undertaking, because it is a big story.” Author Robin Shope says “It is a thrill when you hear one of your books is to become a movie. I couldn’t be more honored.” When asked about the storyline Shope, who lives in Dallas, added, “You will find suspense and a love story that races between Washington, D.C. and America’s Heartland. The issues it presents are timely and the emotions are timeless.” Susan Wales, who makes Los Angeles home, produces the “Movieguide Awards” annually. When asked about working with Wisconsin based Salty Earth Pictures she said, “What I love about Salty Earth Pictures, especially after being in Hollywood where it often takes 10 to 20 years to get a project done, is they get it done. People in Hollywood talk about it a lot, but Salty Earth Pictures gets it done. And that impressed me a lot.”

There is much work to do over the months ahead. Plans for financing, casting, developing the shooting schedule and more will need to be met before the cameras roll. Zambo says, “Salty Earth Pictures is dedicated to producing entertaining stories that have a message of hope based on the truths that can be found in the Bible. I believe ‘The Chase’ will reach many around the world.” If plans go as scheduled “The Chase” will be released in early 2013.

Salty Earth Pictures is a non-profit organization dedicated to encouraging, creating, and distributing, entertainment that challenges minds, lightens hearts, and strengthens souls. It has a 30,000 square foot studio located in Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin. Salty Earth Pictures provides groups tours and a “Secrets of Movie Making Show” to audiences of all ages by appointment. More information is available through this link: The studio has also recently entered into a partnership with Wisconsin Lutheran College in Milwaukee, in order to offer a major in digital cinema production. You can learn more at:

For more information about Salty Earth Pictures please visit our Website at

NQC Live Volume 11 Now Available

Featuring highlights from the 2011 National Quartet Convention, NQC Live is NOW AVAILABLE!!!   This DVD/CD Combo set is only $19.99

Here is a sample of just one of the bonus feature selections:

To order, go to or just click the image to the left.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Retro SGM Radio: Getting Past The Christian Stigma Of Depression Part 3 - March 2009

Getting Past the Christian Stigma of Depression Part Three
By Lorraine Walker
With Dr. Bob Nichols, Jimmy McMillan and Tim Mills

Mental illness strikes one in four Americans and depression is diagnosed in one in ten people. This disease is not a respecter of persons and can be found in the church as well as in the general population. Yet the Church often turns its head as untrained leaders are unable to deal with this illness that encompasses spirit, soul and body.

In this third and final installment of our series on Mental Health, we look to the current treatment for the mentally ill and what the Church can do to help those in the fold find the help they so desperately need.

Once again, we look to our Mental Health ‘panel’, consisting of Dr. Bob Nichols, Jimmy McMillan and Timothy Mills to shed some light on an illness that has so long remained in the shadows. The treatments available can range from chemical assistance, counseling, and behavioral therapy to hospital treatment and homeopathic cures.

Often those with mental illness find it difficult to maintain a prescribed drug therapy. Patients may stop taking medication when they begin to feel better, believing they don’t need further treatment. This medication often has side effects such as weight gain or loss of sex drive. For some, the idea that they need chemical assistance to “feel normal” is so embarrassing that they will just stop taking their pills. Medication compliance becomes more of a complication when the patient stops and resumes taking the pills without respecting the possible effects that will have on the chemical balance of their brain.

Timothy Mills, member of the Southern Brothers and student of psychology, remarks on the need for medication and the belief that is held by many that this is not needed. “If someone is diagnosed with diabetes, no one debates the implications of insulin,” says Tim. “Nitroglycerin tablets are condoned if someone has heart problems. Mental disorders are no exception. There is a possibility of abuse, but that can occur with any medication. In regards to children, I believe that MI medications are many times abused. I think some children need medication, but it should the absolute last resort.”

Jimmy McMillan, member of McMillan and Life, was recently diagnosed with clinical depression and has gone through several types of treatment. “In many cases such as mine drugs play a vital role,” says Jimmy. “It is not until someone is diagnosed properly that the correct balance between drug and counseling treatment can be determined. There are a great number of people out there that simply need someone they can really talk to and work out problems and dilemmas in their life or past. However there are those who need medication to balance their system chemically. Many times it takes medication just for someone to reach the point where they can effectively receive counseling. There are far too many combinations of treatment to go into here but needless to say all forms and combinations are useful.”

Dr. Bob Nichols, mental health expert, agrees with Timothy and Jimmy. “Drugs frequently are essential in bringing emotional equilibrium back to the client so that therapy can be started. Frequently the clients are so out of balance they are virtually catatonic or psychotic, to an extent that they are completely detached from reality. Drugs help the endeavor to achieve a good measure of reality, which is a prerequisite for therapy.”

The Church can play a vital role in providing spiritual counseling to accompany therapy that may be provided to the patient. Leaders need to be trained in this area to properly counsel, but every member in the pew can offer acceptance and unconditional love.

Jimmy McMillan comments on the Church’s role. “The biggest thing the Church can do to help is to show love and compassion. Come to see Mental Illness as just that, an illness. Although Mental Illness is one of the least understood illnesses today I believe the Church needs to be leading the way in providing a safe place for someone to say ‘ I need help’.”

Bring knowledgeable, dynamic mental health professionals that are part of the Christian faith into the church,” suggests Timothy Mills. “A quarterly visit at a different Sunday school class where the professional can address the particular issues for that age group would be appropriate. I think another a positive way would be to promote a biannual seminar addressing the many issues we as Christians face today.”

Dr. Bob Nichols has made it a significant part of his life’s work to assist pastors with Mental Illness back to health. He sees what Mental Illness can do to those in the church and to their leaders. “As a minister as well as a psychologist, I have a heavy burden in this area,” says Dr. Nichols. “It is my perspective that communities of churches should gather together and develop a plan to help their parishioners with mental illness. Unless a church is very large, it does not have the resources to dedicate large amounts of funds exclusively to mental illness.”

Dr. Nichols continues, “There are some problems and solutions that we need to consider, including the fact that more and more churches are moving to ‘lay counselors’ trained by professionals. This is a great aid to the minor types of mental illness. These lay counselors are then resourced by professionals, who have an agreement with the local church to receive their parishioners without referral.”

Some parishioners do not have the proper insurance to cover mental illness, therefore, are not able to go to professionals and have to go to lay counselors. There are very few lay counselors with professional training in the field of mental illness. Communities of churches could group together to defray this expenditure as they contract Christian doctors to work with their parishioners.”

However, Dr. Nichols is aware of the lack of education in this area. “Better training is needed for pastors and front-line Christian leaders as to how to deal with mental illness.

There are many in the pews who suffer from depression and other forms of mental illness who will not approach their pastors for assistance. Often their friends are their resource for comfort and help, so it is helpful to recognize the symptoms of depression as discussed in the first part of this series. [Authors note: these are reprinted at the end of this article].

Sometimes these symptoms are hidden from others as the person goes through their private battle with darkness. When this only comes to light at a suicide or an attempt at suicide, it can be devastating.

Jimmy McMillan suggests, “One thing I might add is to always take someone seriously when they are sharing thoughts of depression. What may seem like the smallest of things to you may be a seemingly unbearable burden to them. Always remember the words ‘you’ll get over it’ are some of the cruelest there are to someone suffering with this disease.”

For those who are close to a sufferer of Mental Illness, saying the right words and offering the proper kind of assistance can be a difficult thing to do. Often it is hard to know what to say or do when you approach a friend or loved one who is in the hospital or who has tried to commit suicide. Timothy Mills suggests, “Tell that person that you love them very much; you think they are valuable and your love for them is as non-judgmental as humanly possible. I would keep the conversation on concrete, tangible subjects. Unless they wanted to talk about God, I would avoid it.”

Tim continues, “It is easy for people to say ‘God loves you’, but someone may be angry because they just don’t see it. Someone might say, ‘God doesn’t love me’ and you would respond with ‘I don’t believe that, but you know that I love you.’ It is easy for someone to argue the intangible but very difficult to argue the tangible. In any debate, one is successful when common ground is achieved.”

Dr. Nichols adds, “Practical help for suicide attempts and mental illness are not all the same. The best care for suicide attempts is for the care-giver to clearly understand the process of grief, which is: Denial, Confusion, Bargaining, Fear, Blame, Anger, Depression, Relief, Sadness, Hope and Trust Reconnection, and finally, Acceptance. Understanding this process will enable the care-giver to discover the appropriate response and support the individual going through crisis.”

We trust that this look into the world of Mental Illness will enable our readers to be more aware and compassionate of those around them who may be suffering from this insidious disease. The Church needs education in this area, but the fruit of the Spirit that the Lord develops in our lives is one of the greatest aids in helping the sufferer feel accepted by those around them.

Thanks again to our Mental Health panel:
Dr. Bob Nichols is an expert on mental illness and works with pastors to assist them back to a state of mental health. He has a doctorate in theology and psychology and over thirty years in ministry.

Jimmy McMillan is a southern gospel artist with McMillan And Life, and is a Christian who suffers from clinical depression.

Timothy Mills, southern gospel artist with The Southern Brothers, is pursuing his degree in Psychology.

For more information on mental health please log onto:
The National Institute of Mental Health:
United States Department of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration:

Reprinted from Part One:
Depression is an illness that involves the body, mood, and thoughts; that affects the way a person eats and sleeps, the way one feels about oneself, and the way one thinks about things. A depressive disorder is not the same as a passing blue mood. It is not a sign of personal weakness or a condition that can be wished away. People with a depression cannot merely "pull themselves together" and get better. Without recognition and help, symptoms can last for weeks, months, or years.

Depression symptoms include:
* Persistent sad, anxious, or "empty" mood
* Feelings of hopelessness, pessimism
* Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, helplessness
* Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies and activities that were once enjoyed, including sex
* Decreased energy, fatigue, being "slowed down"
* Difficulty concentrating, remembering, making decisions
* Insomnia, early-morning awakening, or oversleeping
* Appetite and/or weight loss or overeating and weight gain
* Thoughts of death or suicide; suicide attempts
* Restlessness, irritability
* Persistent physical symptoms that do not respond to treatment, such as headaches, digestive disorders, and chronic pain

If you or anyone you love fits this description, please seek help from your family physician.

First published on in March 2009. Written by Lorraine Walker.
For current features and columns, click on to

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Jason Crabb On Praise The Lord Tonight

JASON CRABB and THE CRABB FAMILY on "PRAISE THE LORD" followed by a one hour special presentation of the life, triumps and trials of
Grammy®-award winning artist

Billy Graham Evangelistic Association Launches Internet Evangelism Outreach

CHARLOTTE, N.C. The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA) has introduced a new Internet evangelism initiative to reach people online with the Gospel. The program was launched in its beta form in late April, and thousands have already viewed an online Gospel presentation and indicated making a commitment to Jesus Christ.

"Every day, people are searching online for answers," said Preston Parrish, executive vice president of ministry for the BGEA. "In their time of need, we are presenting the only hope we have in this world -- the hope found through a relationship with Jesus Christ."

In the coming months, trained volunteer "E-counselors" will be available to chat online with spiritual seekers in an effort to lead even more people into a relationship with Christ. In addition, "Discipleship Coaches" will offer follow-up training to those who have made a commitment and encourage them in finding a church in their area.

The program is an extension of BGEA's commitment to proclaim the Gospel by every effective means available and equip others to do the same. Billy Graham pioneered the use of radio, television and motion pictures to spread the Gospel around the world. Today, BGEA continues in the spirit of innovation through the use of the Internet and social media.

"Today's generation lives on the Internet," said Parrish. "Much like our historic strategy of going where the people are -- into stadiums, civic arenas and public gathering areas -- we are doing the same as we reach into cyberspace with the Good News of God's love, and His offer of forgiveness and eternal life through faith in Christ."

How it Works:
When individuals enter phrases like "What Happens When I Die?" or "Why am I Here?" in popular search engines, BGEA's Internet evangelism project will direct them to relevant web pages that address the questions the inquirer is asking and offer the hope of the Gospel as the ultimate and true solution to their need. The "searcher" can make a commitment to Jesus Christ, or will be able to chat with an "E-counselor" to learn more. For more information on the Internet evangelism project, visit On the site, visitors will see how the program works, as well as real-time commitments being made around the world.

About the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association
The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA) proclaims the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ throughout the world by every effective means available. From its headquarters in Charlotte, N.C., BGEA directs a wide range of domestic and international ministries, including: large-scale festivals led by evangelists Franklin Graham and Will Graham; Dare to Be a Daniel, a youth evangelism training project; My Hope World Evangelism Through Television; the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team of crisis-trained chaplains; and many others through print, television, telephone, radio and the Internet. For more information, please visit Get news updates on Twitter at


NASHVILLE, Tenn.— Grammy®-nominated Christian music mainstay NewSong is slated to bring their annual “Very Merry Christmas Tour” to 14 cities next month.  A holiday highlight for fans and artists alike, this year’s tour will also feature top rock/worship band Kutless, reigning GMA Male Vocalist of the Year Chris August, and breakout singer/songwriter Jamie Grace.   

Kicking-off December 1 in Marietta, Georgia, “NewSong’s Very Merry Christmas Tour” will stop in Cincinnati; Charlotte, North Carolina; Beckley, West Virginia; Marion, Illinois; and Pascagoula, Mississippi, among other cities, before concluding December 19 in Manitowoc, Wisconsin.

NewSong will perform selections from their best-selling recordings The Christmas Shoes and The Christmas Hope, including the group’s emotion-packed #1 mainstream radio hit, “The Christmas Shoes,” which has become the biggest song of their career and one of America’s most beloved Christmas standards. “The Christmas Shoes” also spawned a series of New York Times best-selling novels by Donna VanLiere and two top-rated CBS television movies based on the books and featuring music from NewSong (CBS’ “The Christmas Blessing” was television’s most-watched movie in 2005).

Celebrating 30 years in Christian music, NewSong has recorded 17 albums, garnering 20 #1 Christian radio singles and a Grammy® Award nomination, in addition to being inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame, among numerous other achievements.  Founders of The Winter Jam Tour Spectacular, Christian music's largest annual tour and Pollstar’s #1 tour in attendance for the first quarter of this year, NewSong has hosted many of the genre’s top artists on the tour since its inception in 1995. One True God, the latest recording from NewSong, debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Top Christian/Gospel Albums chart earlier this year and features the new single, “The Same God.”

Portland, Oregon-based Kutless has emerged as one of the premiere rock, worship bands. The band has been awarded RIAA Gold Certification for their worship-based album Strong Tower in addition to Gold Certification for Long-Form video Live From Portland. Since the 2009 release of their hit worship album, It Is Well, BEC Recordings’ Kutless has catapulted to the top of the charts with their mega-hit song “What Faith Can Do.”  Already a hit single in 2009, the success carried into 2010 as this single topped the 2010 Mediabase Christian AC Song of the Year.  In addition to Mediabase, “What Faith Can Do” was the No. 2 Billboard Hot Christian Song of the Year.  Kutless was also named the No. 7 Billboard Christian Artist of the Year, and It Is Well was the No. 10 Billboard Christian Album of the Year.  Kutless has just finished recording their new studio album that will be releasing in early 2012.

Fervent Records’ Chris August is quickly becoming a favorite in the CCM genre making a mark with his debut single, “Starry Night” which claimed the No. 1 spot for five consecutive weeks on the chart and landed at No. 15 on the Billboard year end chart for “Hot Christian Songs” of 2010. With an impressive sweep at this year’s 42nd Annual Dove Awards, August earned awards for “New Artist of the Year” and “Male Vocalist of the Year.” He also claimed the nod for "Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year” for his debut album No Far Away that he co-produced with acclaimed producer Ed Cash. No Far Away was the best-selling New Artist project released in 2010. August is a self-taught pianist, guitarist, and producer who previously worked with artists such as Ashlee Simpson, Ryan Cabrera, Brian McKnight and Jessica Simpson before shifting his focus to a solo career.

Hailing from Lithonia, Georgia, Jamie Grace is a 19-year-old-college student who aside from her career and touring as a singer-songwriter, is also studying children’s ministry. At age 11, Jamie Grace was diagnosed with Tourettes Syndrome, and has since traveled the country sharing her story and faith through music and speaking.  Though just releasing her first, full length record, One Song At A Time, Jamie Grace has been a part of the well-known Revolve tour, had a No. 1 radio hit and a highly successful EP. Her holiday EP, Christmas Together, will debut digitally November 29.

For a complete list of “NewSong’s Very Merry Christmas Tour” cities, visit  For further information, visit

The Crusader's Ministries

The Crusader's Ministries will be RECORDING LIVE A VIDEO AND CD Friday night 7pm, Nov. 18th at Holden Baptist Church at Holden, LA.  This video and CD will be released in a few weeks

C&C Music Group Signs Heritage Crossing

C&C MUSIC GROUP REACHES AN EXCLUSIVE RECORDING AND MANAGEMENT AGREEMENT WITH Heritage Crossing is made up of the McKinney Family - Wade, Lisa, Marissa who is 17, Zack-14, & Caleb-6. This family travels full-time averaging 4-6 services a week in revivals, camp meetings, crusades, and concerts across the USA. They have served as Senior Pastors and in multiple para-church leadership rolls.

Wade and Lisa's families sang regionally throughout Southeast and Northeast Texas for years. Wade's grandfather, Mordie Marcontell was a bass singer with family quartets that sang to open for the greats such as THE STATESMEN, BLACKWOOD BROTHERS, and were regulars at Stamps Baxter singing schools in Lisa's family THE BAKERS sang in revivals and concerts. When they married 20 years ago, they sang with Wade's sister as HERITAGE. As Marissa came of age and began to sing that third part of harmony - the group evolved into HERITAGE CROSSING. They sing "Family Style Gospel... With The Father's Touch".

Among the family there are 3 keyboard players, 4 guitarist, 4 bassist, mandolin players, dobro players, organists, drummers, and Zackery is a powerful harmonica player as well.

They have been described as sounding like the Hinsons with harmony, The McGruders' with their energy, and the Crabb family with their versatility. They are truly one of a kind!

Their heart is to minister to people in multiple venues through word and song. Whether a revival or a concert, they stick to strong lyrical styling with tight harmony that only comes from a family

GOD TV Airs Weekend to Abolish Trafficking

MEDIA ADVISORY, Nov. 17, 2011  GOD TV will focus on the growing international crisis concerning Human Trafficking this weekend (November 18 through 20) with three days of themed programming exposing this modern day slavery.

Presented in conjunction with ministries such as A21; Love146; and Stop the Traffik, GOD TV's Weekend to Abolish Human Trafficking includes three eye-opening films: 'The King's Man,' 'Stella's Voice' and 'Rescue the Girl' which focus on the plight of victims of trafficking, but giving hope for a solution. Various conferences will also be aired that highlight the need for believers to stand against such injustice.

The King's Man ( is an epic action film that captures a compelling story of fear, hope and faith. Providing a glimpse of what it must be like to be kidnapped, it takes the viewer into the murky underworld of some of the most vicious and immoral characters, but despite its potentially tragic outcome, it reveals the most vital aspect of any victim's struggle with the horror of Human Trafficking - the power of faith and prayer.

Stella's Voice ( is a documentary that aims to be a voice that speaks for the orphans of Moldova, from the smallest child to every teen. This quote from the film's website captures the plight of so many young girls caught up in sexual exploitation: "Used by evil men. Dead at nineteen. I am Stella's Voice. I am the voice of orphans. I am their cry for protection from sex traffickers. Will you be Stella's Voice too?"

Conference speakers featured during the Human Trafficking Weekend include: Sharon Ngai who speaks on Exposing Human Trafficking at the Deborah Company Women's Conference and Rob Morris who focuses on Child Exploitation and Sex Trafficking at the Awakening Conference. Other speakers include Danielle Strickland; Christine Caine and Patricia King plus David Uth and Bishop Allen TD Wiggins who speak about Changing Lives through the Love of Jesus Christ.

According to the US State Department's 2011 Report on 'the Trafficking in Persons,' more human beings are being exploited than ever before, with as many as 27 million people affected by commercial sexual exploitation and forced labor. The Report also identifies Human Trafficking as one of the world's largest criminal enterprises generating an estimated $9.5 billion in annual revenue.

"The illegal trade of human beings is a diabolical crime that affects every nation," said GOD TV Co-founder and Director of Television, Wendy Alec, "but there is so much we can do to help stop it. As a Christian broadcaster I believe it is imperative to illuminate this issue to our viewers, as God is calling so many people into the mission field of putting an end to Human Trafficking. He is calling us to rise up like Abraham Lincoln and William Wilberforce did in their day, and help eradicate modern-day slavery."

GOD TV's Weekend to Abolish Human Trafficking will air on the GOD Channel worldwide from November 18 through 20 and will be available for video on demand viewing on GOD TV's website. The full schedule of the broadcasts can be found at The GOD Channel can be viewed across the USA on channel 365 of DIRECTV, on cable stations in some cities and via the Internet.

About GOD TV: GOD TV was founded in the UK in 1995 by Christian media pioneers Rory & Wendy Alec and in just 16 years has become a global phenomenon. Today the network beams a broad cross section of cutting-edge programs, including many life-changing LIVE broadcasts, into millions of homes worldwide. The only Christian broadcaster to transmit globally from Jerusalem, GOD TV's powerful signal is carried via multiple satellites providing free viewing to half a billion people 24-hours-a-day. In the USA, GOD TV can be viewed on DIRECTV channel 365 as well as on select cable channels. It can also be viewed online at The network has several offices in the USA. Other offices are situated in Europe, Africa, Asia and Australasia. In addition to its vast media outreach, GOD TV also helps people in charitable ways by supporting feeding schemes, orphanages, water drilling projects and disaster relief funds.

Contact GOD TV Regional Director for North America,
Mike Meyers at the GOD TV USA Office:
PO Box 708 Grandview, MO 64030, Tel (816) 581 6000, E-mail:

Angel Christian Television Trust, Inc is a Not-For-Profit Florida Corporation with 501 (C) (3) tax-exempt status from the IRS.