Family Topics Parenting

Charlie Gard Is Us

By Robert Fleischmann, National Director of Christian Life Resources, July 18, 2017 Charles (Charlie) Gard was born on August 4, 2016. He was diagnosed with infantile-onset encephalomyopathic mitochondrial DNA depletion syndrome (also known as MDDS). Simply stated, Charlie’s brain is…

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Family Traditions That Cherish Life

Wonderful aromas are wafting in from the kitchen. A juicy turkey continues to roast in the oven, and the spicy scent of a baked pumpkin pie still lingers in the air. In the living room the lights are dimmed, and…

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Making the Most of Family Time

Rev. James A. Aderman Expect that friends will not understand that you won’t play softball every Tuesday night, in order to be at home with the kids. “I just don’t have the time,” I sighed in exasperation. “I dearly want…

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Bridging the Generations

“No cowboy was ever faster on the draw than a grandparent pulling a baby picture out of a wallet.” – Author Unknown There is probably no image more heartwarming than a beaming grandmother tenderly holding her newborn grandchild. Equally appealing…

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Q&A on Aging Parents and Resistance to Living with Their Children

Q: My husband and I have talked about caring for our parents when they are unable to care for themselves. We have offered that they stay with us in our home rather than move to an assisted living facility, but…

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Heaven Talk: A Parent’s Discussion about Death with Their Child

Many mothers and fathers who will do almost anything to avoid discussing death with their children. Perhaps they fear upsetting them, or worse, leaving them emotionally scarred. It can even be argued that an even more powerful deterrent is the…

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Baby Talk – Teaching Children About the Value of Life as a Gift from God

“Can you believe it? The Smith’s are pregnant again!” “That makes five. What are they thinking!?” “I know. They can barely take care of the ones they already have.” Does this conversation sound familiar? Perhaps you have been part of…

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A Product of Their Upbringing – A Look at Children’s Values Reflective of Parents’ Attitudes

Rev. Robert Fleischmann, National Director, Christian Life Resources “The fathers eat sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge.” This proverb is quoted twice in Scripture (Jeremiah 9:14 and Ezekiel 16:44). It is modernized in such phrases as,…

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A Culture of Caring | A Look at Teaching Children to Care for Others

Tim Snyder, Media Services Coordinator, Wisconsin Lutheran College It’s been more than one year since “Mrs. Marge” sold her home and moved in with her son. “Mrs. Marge,” an elderly widow who lived alone, used to be our next-door neighbor….

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Q&A on Questionable Clothing

QUESTION: Many of my daughter’s friends are wearing outfits that I feel are inappropriate. I am very disappointed that my daughter is now wearing some of the same styles. How can I address this with her so she understands the…

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Parenting Tips

Raising a child brings countless benefits, and many parents report that it is the most rewarding job they ever have. However, parenting also presents unique and very stressful situations which can be difficult to properly deal with. It can often…

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A Glimpse at a Blended Family

Let’s talk about blended families. A blended family is what occurs when a man and woman marry, and one or both bring with them children from a previous marriage or relationship. An untimely death, divorce, or children being born out…

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The Internet Predator

Pop quiz: Where would your child be safer? a) In a dark alley in a questionable part of town late at night. b) At home in front of the family computer in the middle of the day. The logical answer seems to be…

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A Family Tradition of Pro-Life Activitism

Traditions create treasured practices in families. They tend to play a very important role in creating family ties and give family members special memories to carry throughout life and are passed on to the next generation. Here is a family…

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My Wife, the Multi-Parent

Captain LeRoy Kiecker, North Mankato, MN Being deployed is hard on the family. I have been here in the sand now since mid-October 2004. Like almost everyone here, I left behind family members, including my wife and two small boys,…

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Competing to Get Ahead

Competing to Get Ahead by Rev. Robert Fleischmann National Director of Christian Life Resources (Originally published in January/February 2005 issue of CLR’s Clearly Caring Magazine) “They eat their young” is one phrase used to explain the ruthless nature of some…

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How to Raise Godly Daughters

Mrs. Laurie Biedenbender Tips to help you raise a unique Christian women Raising godly daughters today is like flying a kite in a hurricane. The mighty winds of the world keep battering against us. Looking for examples Read the teen…

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How You Can Parent Your Teen

Gerald F. Kastens, former administrator of the Commission on Youth Discipleship Nine tips you can use to strengthen your family. Twenty years ago, being a father seemed rather easy–challenging, but not terribly complicated. Fairly regular devotions, rules about finishing broccoli…

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Should I Baptize My Baby?

Christian Life Resources Why Baptize Babies? The Bible doesn’t tell us anywhere how old a person must be at the time of baptism. Jesus commanded us to baptize “all nations” (Matthew 28:19) and doesn’t make any mention of an individual’s…

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The Joy of Being a Christian Mother

Bonnie L. Wasser The kids tell me there are certain statements I make with definite regularity: “Whoever washed the dishes, get back down here!” “What happened to the light bulbs I bought yesterday?” “What do you mean you didn’t vacuum…

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Calling All Parents! – A Look at Christian Parenting

Thad Jahns, M.S. Certain moments in life profoundly change us. Such moments redefine who we are and why we exist. For me, one such instance began on a warm, sunny day in July of 1994. That was the day that…

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Sarah’s Story – A Look at a New Beginning After a Crisis Pregnancy

It was the day of my 18th birthday that I found out I was pregnant. At a time when I should have been young and hopeful and happy and free, I was terrified and lonely and angry and sad. And…

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The Legacy of Love

By Mrs. Lynn Klammer One of the simplest, yet most profound, interactions I ever had with another human being came during the afternoon of an otherwise uneventful day. I had only been married for about a year, and my mother-in-law…

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Living Large in Your Christian Home Life

By Mr. Tim Snyder, Media Services Coordinator for Wisconsin Lutheran College, Milwaukee, WI Living Large – To live an extravagant or self-indulgent lifestyle. (Dictionary.com) Is your family living large? I’m not talking about a life of luxury. This is about…

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The Value of a Thanksgiving Tradition

Rev. Robert Fleischmann, National Director, Christian Life Resources Thanksgiving is a great time of year for my family. First of all, it takes place in the fall. There is something warm and inviting about the colors of fall and the…

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The Value of Self-Esteem

Pastor Rolfe F. Westendorf We want to reject the misuse and the distortions of self-esteem, not waste the value that the concept provides. Some years ago, social scientists recognized what most have known for a long time people who are…

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Ways to Handle Peer Pressure

Walk away from a bad/dangerous situation Make the decision for yourself as to what you do Think ahead about the outcome of your actions — can you live with the consequences? Avoid those people who might lead you to do…

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The Vaccination Quandary

Almost immediately after birth the subject of vaccinations arises. Today, a multitude of vaccinations are available for a variety of illnesses. Along with those vaccinations come questions of safety, side effects, necessity and the origins of the vaccine. Christian parents…

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Treasured: A Look at Caregiving and Alzheimer’s Disease

Linda Lawrence Editor’s Note: This is fifth in a series of articles written by Ms. Linda Lawrence that addresses the challenges and blessings in caring for an aging parent. Mom has lived in a nursing home since her Alzheimer’s progressed…

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Alzheimer’s Became a Blessing? – A Look at Caregiving and Alzheimer’s Disease

Linda Lawrence Editor’s Note: This is fourth in a series of articles written by Ms. Linda Lawrence that addresses the challenges and blessings in caring for an aging parent. When asked what I most feared, I always answered: “Having my…

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How Can I Be A Caregiver?: A Look at Caregiving and Alzheimer’s Disease

Linda Lawrence Editor’s Note: This is the third in a series of articles written by Ms. Linda Lawrence that addresses the challenges and blessings in caring for an aging parent. I love my Lord, and I love solitude. But now…

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Hug Your Mother: A Look at Caregiving and Alzheimer’s Disease

Linda Lawrence Editor’s Note: This is second in a series of articles written by Ms. Linda Lawrence that addresses the challenges and blessings in caring for an aging parent. When Dad died, my husband and I invited my mother, who…

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Drifting: A Look at Parenting and Alzheimer’s Disease

Linda Lawrence Editor’s Note: This is the first in a series of articles written by Ms. Linda Lawrence that addresses the challenges and blessings in caring for an aging parent. Mom’s pinched face and fidgeting fingers catch my attention as…

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Charlie Gard Has Died

By Rev. Robert Fleischmann, National Director of Christian Life Resources   On July 28, 2017, one week before his first birthday, Charlie Gard died. Charlie was at the center of a controversy that resonated throughout the world when the British…

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Q&A on Genetic Testing of Preborn Children

QUESTION: Is genetic testing of preborn children acceptable for Christians? ANSWER: The answer to your question requires some clarification, because there are many variables that come into consideration. Some parents are concerned about a genetic disease that could be passed…

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Would You Like to Go to a Movie?

Rev. Robert Fleischmann, National Director, Christian Life Resources Solomon Wrote (Ecclesiastes 1:9): “What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.” I think of this passage often as…

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Shepherding Your Teens to Adulthood

Mark Clifford Brunner Teen dating? Perhaps, it’s time to assign these words to the dustbin of outmoded phrases. At least, if most 15 year-olds had their way, they would be happy never to hear these words again. We “get together”…

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The Skinny on Kids and TV

Mr. Timothy Snyder The number one incentive for taking control of your youngsters’ television habits is their spiritual health. Doing it for the sake of their physical health is also very compelling. Studies have shown the amount of time kids…

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Today’s Media: Parental Discernment

Mr. Timothy Snyder dis-cern-ment [noun]: keenly selective judgment, good taste and judgment “Parents, it’s 11:00 P.M. … Do you know where your children are?” Are you old enough to remember local television stations broadcasting this public service announcement every evening?…

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It Begins with Ants in the Pants – A Look at Christian Parenting

Rev. Robert Fleischmann, National Director, CLR The late humorist and author, Erma Bombeck, once wrote: “The inside of a house of worship must be the most confusing place ever to a child. There’s water that you can’t play with, books…

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Servant-Leadership in the Family [3-Part Series for Christian Fathers] // Bible Study

Bible Study [3-Part Series for Christian Fathers]: Servant-Leadership in the Family – Part 1 [Student’s Guide] This is a 3-part Bible study series for fathers. In this series, we will examine what God says in his Word about a father’s…

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Embryo Adoption

What is Embryo Adoption? When couples use in vitro fertilization to achieve pregnancy, they will often have embryos remaining after they complete their family. One option available to them is to donate those embryos to another couple. Embryo adoption allows…

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Focus // Women’s Bible Study

Study Passage: 38 As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 39 She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet…

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Turning Back the Clock

It’s the season for high school graduations. Where has the time gone? What will our young people do with the time in front of them, the rest of their lives? For many, the immediate answer is more education. They have…

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Father in Alcohol Recovery Gives Perspective to Those With Other Addictions

John Cook, Marriage and Family Counselor at Wisconsin Lutheran Christian Counseling, Milwaukee, WI A father in recovery writes to his wife and children. His perspective can be applied to those involved with other addictions. To My Family, Whom I Love……

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The Crisis of Fatherhood: Has It Become a Biological Burden?

What does it take to be a father today? Biologically, it simply takes fertilizing an egg. Practically, being a father is so much more! Advances in reproductive technology are robbing fathers of an awesome responsibility and privilege. We cannot deny…

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Family Values

Rev. Gary P. Baumler, Editor of Forward/NL “God sets the lonely in families.” (Psalm 68:6) We have the challenge to promote the family and help build solid Christian families in our midst. Here is one inescapable fact: We all come…

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Caution: Bumps Ahead (Preparing for Adolescence)

James Dobson, Ph.D. A team of doctors decided to conduct an experiment to study the ways in which group pressure influences young people. To accomplish this, they invited 10 teenagers into a room and told them they were going to…

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Sharing the Facts of Life

Pastor James A. Aderman I trusted him when he told me, “I love you.” He trusted me when I said the same. We trusted our emotions when they said, “It’s OK. Show each other how much you care.” When our…

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Drug Abuse

Rev. Wayne D. Mueller Just say no. Sounds easy, doesn’t it? A simple solution to a complex problem. Just say no and it all goes away. Unfortunately, drug and alcohol abuse can’t be sloganed away. It continues to wreck marriages…

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Choosing a Doctor Who Shares Your Faith

Janet C. Lindemann, M.D. In a Christian doctor-patient relationship, faith is the common bond. How good it is for patient and doctor to share the same faith. I love caring for patients of my own church – so many barriers…

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When Dad Hits Mom

Victor Vieth, Assistant County Attorney, Cottonwood County, MN Seven suggestions to make your congregation safe for victims of domestic violence. In my career as a prosecutor, I have worked with hundreds of victims of domestic violence. I have seen the…

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Children in Church: Trial-by-Diaper

Rachel Mendell One woman encourages those who brave the terrors of worship with children. I look around and count babies, and I feel a little envy. My youngest is four now. I look around and see the young, fussy children…

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WANTED: A Truly Beautiful Wife

Pastor Mark A. Paustian What to look for when choosing the woman you want to marry. I married the most beautiful woman I ever met. She was charming and funny, lively and loved by all. Her greatest personal gifts were…

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Children Belong in Church

Laurie Biedenbender Is the sound of children disturbing or delightful? How children and adults benefit from children attending worship. “I wonder if it’s worth it to bring him to church at all.” Steve Bilitz, family ministry director at Christ, North…

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Two Halves of a Complementary Whole

Professor Mary L. Heins, Wisconsin Lutheran College, Milwaukee, WI What our God-given gender differences are and how understanding them can help you communicate better with the opposite sex. We don’t have to read very far into Genesis before we learn…

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Breaking The Silence of Adam

Mark Clifford Brunner Some life statistics about men: (From the National Center on Health Statistics) 66% of all heart attacks occurring in the U.S. annually are suffered by men. Every 12 minutes a man dies of prostate cancer. 54% of…

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‘Til Death Us Do Part

Armin J. Panning Marriage has been instituted by God, and he continues to regulate it. The dream of many a young girl is to be a June bride. For reasons not entirely clear, June remains a popular wedding month. A…

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Parenting When Your Child Goes Down the Wrong Path

Susan Bondow When Things Go Wrong: What to do, and not to do, when your child goes down the wrong path. David and Dennis are brothers. They share the same Mom and Dad and grew up in the same household,…

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A Model for Marriage

Rev. Wayne D. Mueller A marriage based on the Bible will help couples fulfill their God-given roles and experience true and complete oneness. The bride did everything wrong. Again and again, she brought grief to her husband. He was the…

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Sympathy: Feeling With Others, Not For Them

Pastor Fredric E. Piepenbrink When we sympathize with others, we are led into action, following Jesus’ command to love one another as he loved us. “Sympathy is cold to the relation of distant misery,” wrote Edward Gibbon. In contrast to…

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Depression That Leads to Death

True or False? 1) Most people trying to cope with depression simply don’t have strong enough faith. FALSE. People in the church may jump to this conclusion because many depressed people push God away. They really suffer from a treatable…

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Our Marriage Mechanic

Pastor James Aderman, Fairview Lutheran Church, Milwaukee, WI Determining, “Who’s to blame?” requires spouses to be on opposing teams. Husbands and wives become teammates when they ask, “What exactly is wrong, and how do we fix it?” “You’re late. We…

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Empty Nesting Is for the Birds

Rev. Robert Fleischmann, National Director, Christian Life Resources This issue of Clearly Caring is arriving in the mail between Mothers Day and Fathers Day two really big family holidays. My writing assignment for this commentary came to me the morning…

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The Purity Ring

Michael and Judith Hayes Most little girls dream of the day they will meet their Prince Charming. A young woman begins preparing to meet the real love of her life when she is still harboring her Barbie dolls, dress-up clothes…

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Love and Respect in Ephesians 5

Christianity Today, the largest evangelical Protestant periodical in our country, recently conducted a major survey of 1,250 subscribers who were chosen at random. Close to 750 subscribers and/or their spouses (divided almost equally between the sexes) completed questionnaires on male…

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Today’s Media: Righteous Indignation

Mr. Timothy Snyder, Media Production Coordinator, Christian Life Resources Righteous indignation. You know the feeling. You find something so offensive you start to seethe inside. It’s a jumbled mix of emotions and souls are at stake. You hate the sin…

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The Joy of Being a Christian Mother

Bonnie L. Wasser The kids tell me there are certain statements I make with definite regularity: “Whoever washed the dishes, get back down here!” “What happened to all of the food I bought yesterday?” They have even dared to suggest…

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Is He The One?

Laurie Biedenbender Mom gives advice on what to look for when searching for “Mr. Right.” Dear Daughter, Since you were a tiny baby, I’ve prayed for you: that you grow in your love for Jesus, that you find your niche…

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Keep ‘Em Talkin’ – A Look at Family Communication

Thad Jahns, M.S. Cutting wood was never my favorite thing to do. After all, there were better things for a pre-teen boy to do on a Saturday afternoontelevision shows to watch, friends to hang out with, midday naps to take….

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Helping Your Teen Say No to Sex

Josh D. McDowell Dear Mr. McDowell, Having premarital sex was the most horrifying experience of my life. It wasn’t at all the emotionally satisfying experience the world deceived me into believing. I felt as lf my insides were being exposed…

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Divorce is Not an Option

Rev. Walter F. Beckmann I just finished reading a book my family gave me for Christmas — Tom Brokaw’s best seller, The Greatest Generation. It’s a series of interviews with members of that generation called to fight World War II….

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The Head of the Home

Rev. Wayne D. Mueller Men should follow Jesus’ lead and head their families with love, sacrifice, and the Word Politically correct pundits are changing their tune. Well, maybe it’s the same tune, but at least it’s set to a different…

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Divorce and Remarriage

Rev. John F. Brug QUESTION: In light of Mark 10:11,12, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her, and if she divorces her husband and marries another man, she commits adultery,” why do WELS pastors officiate at…

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We Live Together as a Family

Rev. David J. Valleskey, Former President of Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary, Mequon, WI We Live Together as a Family… To the Glory of God As a family, the first thing we do is love one another. We were not a family….

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‘From Generation to Generation’ – Parents Nurturing Their Children’s Faith

Laurie Biedenbender We’re always passing the baton of faith — sharing the promise — to the next generation. It’s been compared to a relay race. The most critical moment is when both runners are in the passing zone, and the…

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Behind Every Athlete

Dan Peterson A friend of mine once said that coaching is teaching children to be the best they can be. Setting the Focus In both the public and private school settings, I have found an enormous advantage to coach athletes…

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Lessons from the Lawnmower – A Look at Parenting

Mr. Thad Jahns, Marriage and Family Therapist I have to admit it. I am one of those guys who takes great pride in keeping his lawn in pristine condition. Not that it is a total obsession with me. I don’t…

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A Model Family – Lessons Learned about an Adoptees Reunion with Her Birth Parents

Larissa Fasthorse I was brought to my parents’ home when I was 11 months old. My birth father delivered me to the house, and my birth mother was already long gone. After he left, my parents say they sat and…

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Adopted by My Parents… and God

Rev. Paul Prange Before a couple adopts a child, they may wonder how to tell the child that he or she is adopted. Do you wait until you think the child can understand the concept? What words do you use…

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Q&A on Abstinence/Teaching Teens about Birth Control

QUESTION: I’ve heard that teen pregnancy rates have increased. Is it time to teach our kids about birth control? ANSWER: The teen birth rate has been on a steep decline since the early 1990s. Yet, teaching about birth control is…

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Is There a Place Within Christian Marriage to Use Birth Control?

Rev. Robert Fleischmann, National Director, Christian Life Resources Yes, but an explanation is in order. God is the author of human life (Deuteronomy 32:39), and man is a steward, caretaker, and guardian of human life (Genesis 9:5). A Christian may…

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The Father and Issues of Life and Death

When abortion is marketed to the general public its advocates emphasize the autonomous right of the woman to make this decision. Society has so bought into that notion that in 1976 the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the father of…

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The Complexities of Charlie Gard

By Rev. Robert Fleischmann, National Director of Christian Life Resources Background Charlie Gard was born in England on August 4, 2016, to Chris Gard and Connie Yates. A few weeks after his birth Charlie was diagnosed with mitochondrial DNA depletion…

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Caregiving: Christian Helping and Coping

  When you pass through the waters I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not…

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Fact Sheet on Vaccinations

How do immunizations work? Immunizations, or vaccinations/vaccines, increase the body’s own antibodies to a specific illness or disease. The injections contain a small amount of a weakened or inactive form of the virus or bacteria that the body can fight….

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The Shepherd Restores a Soul: A Look at Caregiving and Alzheimer’s Disease

Linda Lawrence Editor’s Note: This is the sixth and final installment in a series of articles written by Ms. Linda Lawrence that addresses the challenges and blessings in caring for an aging parent. My mother was like a lost lamb, struggling…

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