Press Release Service By ACNS staffPosted Jul 5, 2016 Rector Shreveport, LA This Summer’s Anti-Racism Training Online Course (Diocese of New Jersey) June 18-July 16 Rector Knoxville, TN Featured Events The Church Pension Fund Invests $20 Million in Impact Investment Fund Designed to Preserve Workforce Housing Communities Nationwide Church Pension Group Submit an Event Listing Rector Collierville, TN Youth Minister Lorton, VA Bishop Diocesan Springfield, IL [Anglican Communion News Service] Two Anglicans will serve on the executive committee of the World Council of Churches, following elections last week at a meeting of the ecumenical body’s Central Committee in Trondheim, Norway.Dr. Agnes Abuom continues in her role as moderator of the WCC’s Central Committee. Abuom, a member of the Anglican Church of Kenya, made history when she was elected in 2013 because she was the first woman, and the first African, to hold the post.She will be joined on the executive committee by another Anglican, the Rev. Rex Reyes Jr., a member of the Episcopal Church in the Philippines and the general secretary of the National Council of Churches of the Philippines.Within the structures of the World Council of Churches, the assembly, which meets every seven years, has the mandate to review programs, to issue public statements and determine the overall policies of the WCC. It also elects its presidents and a Central Committee to oversee the WCC’s work until the next assembly.The Central Committee acts as the chief governing body of the WCC in-between assemblies. It meets every two years. The Central Committee elects an executive committee which meets twice a year.The executive committee, which meets twice a year, has fiduciary responsibility for the governance of the WCC and ensures implementation of the strategic objectives set by the Central Committee, oversees the finances of the council, approves the budget, monitors ongoing programmatic work, establishes personnel policies and appoints leadership staff.The new members of the WCC executive committee are:Dr Agnes Abuom,Moderator,Anglican Church of KenyaH.E. Metropolitan Prof Dr Gennadios of Sassima,Vice-Moderator,Orthodox, Greece, Ecumenical PatriarchateBishop Mary Ann Swenson,Methodist, USA, United Methodist ChurchBishop Petra Bosse-Huber,Evangelical Church in GermanyThe Revd Dr Festus Ambe Asana,Presbyterian Church in CameroonThe Revd. Dr Samson Olasupo Adeniyi Ayokunle,Nigerian Baptist ConventionDr Abba Haile Mariam Melese Ayenew,Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo ChurchPadi Rex R B Reyes Jr,National Council of Churches of the Philippines, Episcopal Church in the PhilippinesMs Emily Evans,Uniting Church in AustraliaThe Revd Dr Manhong Lin,China Christian CouncilThe Revd Dr Hyun JuBae,Presbyterian Church of KoreaThe Revd Dr Paul Gardner,Moravian Church in JamaicaArchpriest Mikhail Goundiaev,Russian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate)H.E. Metropolitan Serafim Kykotis,Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Alexandria and All AfricaH.E. Metropolitan Prof Dr Nifon of Targoviste,Romanian Orthodox ChurchBishop Simo Peura,Evangelical Lutheran Church of FinlandThe Revd Karin Van Den Broeke,Protestant Church in the NetherlandsThe Revd Martina Viktorie Kopecká,Czechoslovak Hussite ChurchThe Revd Cora Luisa Antonio Matamoros,Moravian Church in NicaraguaH.E. Metropolitan Zachariah Mar Nicholovos,Malankara Orthodox Syrian ChurchMrs Anne Glynn-Mackoul,Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch and All the EastBishop John F White,African Methodist Episcopal Church, USAThe Revd Robina Winbush,Presbyterian Church, USAThe Revd Taaroanui Maraea,Maohi Protestant Church, French Polynesia People Missioner for Disaster Resilience Sacramento, CA Submit a Press Release Rector Tampa, FL Director of Music Morristown, NJ Join the Episcopal Diocese of Texas in Celebrating the Pauli Murray Feast Online Worship Service June 27 Ecumenical & Interreligious, Featured Jobs & Calls Anglican Communion, The Church Investment Group Commends the Taskforce on the Theology of Money on its report, The Theology of Money and Investing as Doing Theology Church Investment Group In-person Retreat: Thanksgiving Trinity Retreat Center (West Cornwall, CT) Nov. 24-28 Canon for Family Ministry Jackson, MS Family Ministry Coordinator Baton Rouge, LA Seminary of the Southwest announces appointment of two new full time faculty members Seminary of the Southwest Associate Rector for Family Ministries Anchorage, AK TryTank Experimental Lab and York St. John University of England Launch Survey to Study the Impact of Covid-19 on the Episcopal Church TryTank Experimental Lab New Berrigan Book With Episcopal Roots Cascade Books Rector Smithfield, NC Tags Rector Bath, NC Ya no son extranjeros: Un diálogo acerca de inmigración Una conversación de Zoom June 22 @ 7 p.m. ET Remember Holy Land Christians on Jerusalem Sunday, June 20 American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem Associate Rector Columbus, GA Rector Belleville, IL Director of Administration & Finance Atlanta, GA Virtual Celebration of the Jerusalem Princess Basma Center Zoom Conversation June 19 @ 12 p.m. ET Rector Albany, NY Rector (FT or PT) Indian River, MI Course Director Jerusalem, Israel Rector Martinsville, VA Associate Priest for Pastoral Care New York, NY Assistant/Associate Rector Morristown, NJ Assistant/Associate Rector Washington, DC Curate (Associate & Priest-in-Charge) Traverse City, MI An Evening with Presiding Bishop Curry and Iconographer Kelly Latimore Episcopal Migration Ministries via Zoom June 23 @ 6 p.m. ET 2 Anglicans elected to World Council of Churches executive committee Rector and Chaplain Eugene, OR Rector Hopkinsville, KY Assistant/Associate Priest Scottsdale, AZ Inaugural Diocesan Feast Day Celebrating Juneteenth San Francisco, CA (and livestream) June 19 @ 2 p.m. PT Cathedral Dean Boise, ID Curate Diocese of Nebraska AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to PrintFriendlyPrintFriendlyShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThis Priest-in-Charge Lebanon, OH Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Hires Reverend Kevin W. VanHook, II as Executive Director Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Rector Pittsburgh, PA Priest Associate or Director of Adult Ministries Greenville, SC Rector/Priest in Charge (PT) Lisbon, ME Episcopal Migration Ministries’ Virtual Prayer Vigil for World Refugee Day Facebook Live Prayer Vigil June 20 @ 7 p.m. ET Rector Washington, DC Submit a Job Listing
November 1, 2005 Regular News Passion burns for woman who has become the ‘unofficial’ spokeswoman for the Kids Deserve Justice plate Camille Murawski Special to the News When Lavina Johnson was just 10 years old, she gripped a pistol with both hands and placed it in her mouth. Lavina had been sexually molested since she was 2, and she was tired, so very tired. Surely, she thought, it would be better to die than to live.Tears rolled down her cheeks as Lavina paused. She noticed the bitter taste of gunpowder residue on the cold hard barrel. Somewhere, in the distance, a child laughed. In the span of that moment, Lavina had one new thought on her mind: “I want to live.”Lavina Johnson, now 38, has crawled from the abyss of despair that day in Paterson, N.J., to become the unofficial spokeswoman for the Kids Deserve Justice specialty license plate. Kids Deserve Justice, one of Florida’s newest specialty tags, funds free legal services for children. Every dollar of the $25 cost of Kids Deserve Justice will go toward grants administered through The Florida Bar Foundation. The Foundation began funding special legal services programs for children in 1999, and last year awarded $697,000 to 15 programs throughout the state. Since the plate’s April debut, sales and donations have recently passed $11,000.The funds generated from the sale of the plate will be used in a variety of ways, including representation of abused or neglected children in dependency court, helping parents advocate before school officials to obtain special education testing and services for their children, helping low-income children gain access to health care, and helping older individual foster children receive the intended services necessary for them to successfully transition out of state care and avoid homelessness.Much of the work done by Foundation-funded children’s legal aid projects goes unnoticed. But just ask, and Johnson will tell you how children’s legal services has changed her own children’s lives.It hasn’t been easy, Johnson acknowledged. Growing up in the projects might have turned a lesser person bitter. “Bitter people can’t hear children laugh,” Johnson said.Johnson and her husband, Rodney, live in Midway, and have four children. Lavina beams as she talks about the accomplishments of each. Raising them to be caring, happy people has also been a struggle, and not just because the Johnsons are poor. For years — nobody knows just how many — a stealthy tumor camped out in Lavina Johnson’s brain, growing cancerous tentacles until it took up nearly a quarter of the space in Lavina’s skull.Lavina never knew. Well-meaning family members covered up her fainting spells. She had never even had a bad headache until one day in 1996, when she was driving to a local grocery store. “I thought someone had shot me,” Lavina said.And even though it wasn’t until months later that a surgeon cut into Lavina’s brain and scooped out as much of the tumor as he could, Lavina still is not bitter. Even when she was nearly electrocuted by faulty wiring in a subsidized home, Lavina kept her cheery attitude. And recently, when she suffered third-degree burns from a grease fire over much of her leg, Lavina has kept smiling. “Why not me?” Lavina asked. “My misery don’t love company. I want everyone to be happy.”Lavina wants everyone to be happy, but she has a special place in her heart for children. Once, when Lavina was picking up her daughter from school, she encountered a crying child. The girl was crying, Lavina said, because she had just moved to the area and was afraid no one would like her. Lavina promised to introduce the child to her own daughter, and a friendship blossomed.Despite a kindness somehow borne out of those bleak days in Paterson, Lavina is not to be trifled with. Soon after she enrolled her children in high school, Lavina said her daughter was attacked by some fellow students.Lavina reported the incident, but trouble kept simmering at the school. Rumors began to circulate that Lavina’s son was the next target. Again, Lavina reported the incident. Again, the matter was largely ignored.About five months after the incident with her daughter, Lavina’s son was attacked. School administrators responded by suspending him, and threatening him with expulsion. Johnson knew she would need an attorney. She contacted Legal Services of North Florida and spoke with Tara Rosenblum and Scott Manion.As Rosenblum, a former teacher, reviewed Marquiece Johnson’s school records, she became convinced that the young man might be an “unidentified exceptional education student.” Rosenblum said she and Manion represented Marquiece at a school hearing during his suspension that resulted in his not being recommended for expulsion (and they requested that he be tested for ESE — exceptional student educational services).Lavina Johnson knew she had found the right person to help her son. “She has passion,” Johnson said of Rosenblum. “She had Marquiece’s back. She made it about my child and she fought the good fight.” Because of Rosenblum’s legal intervention, Marquiece is now in the process of ESE testing, and he has enrolled at a local technical institute. Marquiece is studying welding, and is planning to help rebuild New Orleans once he receives his certificates.Rosenblum called Lavina Johnson “an amazing woman who never gives up. I’ve never seen anyone like her.”Lavina Johnson has no intention of giving up. “I believe in children’s legal services so much,” she said. Looking back, Johnson said she wished she would have known about legal aid in high school. When she was a 17-year-old student, Johnson said other students harassed her. According to Johnson, when she tried to report the incidents, she was largely ignored by school administrators. Knowledge is a powerful thing, Johnson said, and she simply didn’t know that what was happening to her could have been a case for legal aid.Because of Lavina Johnson’s passion for justice, she was recruited to speak at a recent press conference for Kids Deserve Justice. She told her story to a rapt audience as children blew a rainbow of bubbles in the background. “To have any lasting impact on the world,” Johnson read, “We must focus our energy on people, not profits or success. If we can help one person, our efforts will never be in vain.” Camille Murawski is the communications coordinator for The Florida Bar Foundation and can be reached by calling (407) 843-0045 or e-mail [email protected] flabarfndn.org. Woman on fire: Lavina Johnson’s crusade for justice Woman on fire: Lavina Johnson’s crusade for justice
As heartwarming as Kobe Bryant’s farewell is, the Lakers’ season has never been about that, even if the Lakers say it is.In three months, Kobe will be gone, at least as a member of the Lakers. Everyone else will still be here.Had the Lakers of the Future laid an egg, nothing would have mattered, not even waiving the five-year rule to install Kobe in the Hall of Fame, moving up the ceremony to retire his jersey next Opening Night, or bringing back the Lakers’ 2000, 2001 and 2002 champions to reunite Kobe and Shaquille O’Neal again!Story lines flow from facts, not marketing strategies designed to distract the fans in these worst of all possible times. GM Mitch Kupchak said the season was dedicated to Kobe and it was too bad that the kids’ development had to wait but I doubt that it was Mitch who came up with it.It had “ownership” written all over it to help Time Warner get over its plummeting ratings, nearing $500 million in rights fees for four seasons with the team on a 15-win pace.The worst of times was exactly what the first half of this season looked like with Coach Byron Scott benching D’Angelo Russell, who looked lost, and Julius Randle, who looked OK, while Jordan Clarkson took a step back from his 2015 post-All-Star numbers.Happily for the Lakers, the kids now look like all right with Russell’s four-game breakout in which he scored 22-22-39-24 suggesting he, too, is getting somewhere … even if Friday’s return to Earth in which he shot 3 of 16 showed he’s not there yet.If none of the Laker kids is yet a star, it doesn’t often work that fast. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Once only team execs watched Summer League. Now it’s on TV, which wasn’t good for Russell when he tanked in Las Vegas.If good is better than bad, summer’s summer. Victor Oladipo dominated the Orlando league in 2013 and has struggled since.By Christmas with Russell on the bench, Laker fans were asking, “Why? Why?”That was a tad early, say two or three years.Even all-time greats can struggle as rookies, the more so if they’re held back until they learn what they need to know so that they’re more likely to become Kobe Bryant than Carmelo Anthony.Ten of this season’s All-Stars averaged in single figures as rookies, including Bryant (7.6), James Harden, LaMarcus Aldridge, Jimmy Butler, Paul George, Paul Millsap, DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry.The hallmark of the social media age, apart from total craziness, is wanton impatience.The actual process is f-a-r slower with splits showing who’s progressing and who’s not.Russell has averaged 18, shooting 46.8 percent since the All-Star break, small sample size that it is. Before it, he averaged 12 and 41.5 percent, even if that says nothing about his playmaking (tentative) and defense (intermittent).Take Boston’s Marcus Smart, still considered a promising player on the Celtics’ model rebuilding program.Arriving with a well-rounded game, he shot 36.7 percent as a rookie, 33.5 on 3-pointers.In his second season he’s at 35.8 and 27.3.If that doesn’t mean Smart won’t make it, it’s not good to go backward where you need to improve most. Another season like this and I’d expect to see him begin bouncing around the NBA.Happily for the Lakers, their kids are trending up.Timberwolves commentator Jim Peterson did a 2014 re-draft, taking Randle – whom Atlanta’s Al Horford just said “will develop into a great player” – at No. 8 and Clarkson, who went 46th at No. 9.Unhappily for the Lakers, they’re not close to being as far along as the Celtics who shortened the process by turning Tayshaun Prince into Isaiah Thomas … like Laker GM Jerry West did when he stole Cedric Ceballos from division rival Phoenix in 1994That was the Lakers’ greatest managerial exploit, going from Magic Johnson’s devasting 1991 retirement to the 1996 arrival of Shaq and Kobe.That was five years. Believe it or not, this spring will only make it three since the Lakers have been in the playoffs.So, as nice as Kobe’s farewell promises to be, it will be nice for Laker fans to have something to come back to.Mark Heisler has written an NBA column since 1991 and was honored with the Naismith Hall of Fame’s Curt Gowdy Award in 2006. His column is published Sundays in Los Angeles News Group print editions.