Saturday, August 1, 2009

Student Ministry Newsletter- June 2009

Note: I have a few recent student ministry posts that still need photos. As soon as I upload the photos to Flickr, I will add these posts here to Blogspot in the order that I originally completed them. Check back soon!

Aloha ChoG Youth Newsletter- June 2009

    Our Aloha Church of God student ministry has concluded our teaching series on "Responding to God," and we pray that the students' responses have indicated life change. We've been inspired by the confrontation of sin by Nathan, the confession of King David, the bravery of Esther, and the obedience of the prophet Isaiah. These last few months, students have been challenged to respond to God's call as Isaiah did by answering, "Here am I. Send me!" (Isaiah 6:8).

Here are some highlights of this past month's activities:

  • The nail-biting suspense of playing Easter Egg Roulette

  • Cheering on Juan (in the green jersey) as he won a decisive soccer victory over a tough team

  • Judging the performances of our talented theater students as they compete by acting out various vignettes (Alissa and Tiffany are featured in the photo)

  • Enjoying some of the latest "summer popcorn flicks" at the movie theater together

It is a blessing that Alex Bates (Class of '07) and her boyfriend Ryan are still actively involved at Aloha Church of God, leading children's church. We also caught up with a couple of other Aloha ChoG youth graduates whom we don't see very often. In this month's special "Where Are They Now?" segment:


  • Martha Carr (Class of '02) was spotted climbing Saddle Mountain with her mom, Peggy, on Memorial Day. She is currently working hard for her parents as they prepare their newly purchased home.

  • Lindsay Adams (Class of '05), daughter of Rick and Marva, graduated in May from Warner Pacific College with a B.A. in Elementary Education. She will be marrying her fiancĂ©, Lance Chamberlain, in September!

We are proud of all of our students. They have a well deserved summer vacation just around the corner. Thank you for remembering each of them in your prayers.

In Christ,

Youth Pastors Garth and Kathy

Here are a some bonus pictures for this month:

Floor hockey

Easter Egg Roulette aftermath

Weight lifting

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

A Week of Jeep Smash-Ups

Ever had one of those weeks? Last month, my Jeep was rear-ended twice (both times while stopped at an intersection) within 72 hours. There were no major injuries, but the damage ranged from a totaled Ford Taurus to a full-on seven car pileup!

My Jeep got hit the first time as I was stopped with a car in front of me at a busy intersection, within a block or so from my home. Even with my Jeep's soft top down, I never heard the Taurus approach my rear bumper. Rather than hit her brakes, the driver was most likely speeding up to make a yellow light. She must have been going at least 35 MPH when she slammed into my rear bumper, spraying antifreeze and small pieces of her Taurus all over the intersection. IMG_2086_edited-1.JPG
The picture above was taken at a later time, after the biggest shards of her car were removed from the intersection. Her Taurus had just enough life left in the engine to sputter around the corner and roll onto a side street to find its final resting place (in truth, she had it towed away the next week).
I thanked the Lord that the lady's small daughter was unharmed, and also that my Jeep only had a couple of scratches and tiny perforation on the rear bumper. Not wanting to leave the nice woman stranded in her slowly flowing river of antifreeze, I waited with her until her sister showed up to drive them both to her child daycare workplace.
The steam eventually stopped billowing out of her Taurus' engine, causing the outside of her car to look slightly less trashed. And although we were unable to pry her hood open, we could both peek inside to see her mangled radiator, hoses, etc. I later made a follow-up phone call to check up on her, and she had already planned to total out her Taurus. I felt so bad for her!

Two days later, a few blocks away from the Nike World Campus, a U-Haul driver lost control of his moving van and rear-ended a Ford Mustang. The chain reaction that ensued involved the Mustang, which rear-ended the U-Haul driver's girlfriend, who finally hit a string of three more cars (with my Jeep trapped in the middle). I braced for impact as the succession of crashing sounds drew closer to the rear of my Jeep. The car behind me inevitably hit my bumper and pushed my Jeep from a stopped, braked position into the van stopped in front of me.
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For the climax, the van in front of me appeared to knock the leading car up to the edge of the crosswalk. Rather than waiting to collect myself, I uncharacteristically screamed (my apologies to Kathy's sensitive eardrums) into my hands-free cell device, "I gotta call you back. Someone just rear-ended my Jeep AGAIN!!"

As a police officer took our statements, most of the drivers surveyed the string of our seven cars, most of which were now smashed together, and just had to laugh. There was no major damage, and only the U-Haul driver's girlfriend had minor injuries. My Jeep being rear-ended a couple days earlier only made this accident seem more hilarious.

My conversations with the other drivers led me to conclude that none of them were followers of Christ just yet. But we all shared a thankfulness that everyone was okay… and we all agreed that Someone must have been watching over us.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Student Ministry Newsletter- May '09


Our student ministry group is proud of all seven people who made the decision to be baptized in April. Pastor Tim baptized Shannon, Andrew, Melissa, and Aloha youth graduate Tiffany.
Garth and Kathy had the honor of baptizing students Victoria and Jackie. Each of these believers publically demonstrated their faith in Christ, while obediently identifying with His death and resurrection.


The collaboration with our very own Aloha Christian School for the spaghetti fundraiser dinner was an overwhelming success. We're still waiting for the final numbers, but the gym was packed with families who stopped by to fill up on the tasty pasta, garlic bread, salad, and lemon squares. This year's raffle, consisting of 58 different gift baskets, was also a big draw.
Our students received several compliments on how well they served. Those kids worked hard that night!

On Sundays and Wednesdays, we are continuing a teaching series on "Responding to God." Recently we have dealt with themes of taking risks for the one true God (as Rahab did), battling in God's strength (like Joshua), and staying focused on the Lord in spite of distractions (identifying with the struggles of Sampson's mother, Solomon, Martha, and others).

Other ministry highlights include:
We were impressed (as always) at our students' performances and behind-the-scenes efforts for Aloha High School's presentation of "Cabaret."

Students helped out our church's King's Kids ministry by filling Easter baskets...

...And what an amazing turnout we had for the breakfast and service on Easter Sunday! Praise God that both "big church" and youth group attendance continues to grow!

In Christ,

Youth Pastors Garth and Kathy Hamilton

Here are a few extra pictures from our student ministry:
A small but dedicated group of Sunday School students work together on a project.

Believers "stand firm" against resistance.

"Honey, if you love me, please give me a smile..."


Eleanor writes down the group's answers to prayer.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Video: Spring Skiing with Bo & Photos from Jake's Homecoming

I am in the middle of filming a potentially 12-14 hour shoot on a movie set here in downtown Portland. To pass the time in between takes, I decided to post a couple of short videos that my dad shot of me skiing at Mt. Hood Meadows last month.


The weather was beautiful. Later in the day, however, the snow started to melt and wreak havoc on my form. If you look closely, you can see me crash at the end of both clips.

I didn't build up much speed for this clip, but the camera was still rolling when I ate snow at the end.

It seems that there is no end in sight for today's film shoot, so I also have time for a post-Memorial day tribute to my cousin, Jake Davis. During his 15 day leave from Iraq, we were able to celebrate his temporary homecoming on his actual birthday.

He took time out for this bad boy pose with his brand new Springfield 45 XD handgun. Who would ever think to put that on a birthday list?


We'll be counting down the next six months with you, Jake. You'll be back in the States before you know it. Thanks for bravely serving our country. We are all so proud of you!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Student Ministry Newsletter- April ‘09


Responding to God has been the theme of our Aloha Church of God student ministry meetings this season. Our teachings have uncovered parallels between our young people's lives and the biblical accounts of believers such as John the Baptist, his mother Elizabeth, and the Hebrew midwives who feared the Lord and saved the baby Moses' life.

We are all placed in challenging situations from time to time, and the Holy Spirit will guide our hearts to make bold choices that honor Christ.

How will you respond?

Some fun ministry highlights from this past month include:

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Off-roading in Garth's Jeep at Brown's Camp, along with some kids from our community.
We had to get roped out of the mud by one of our friends. Thank God that the bumper held up!


A soggy yet scenic hike at Multnomah Falls.


Rocking and worshipping at the Memorial Coliseum with Jeremy Camp, Mercy Me, Hawk Nelson, Tenth Avenue North, and Addison Road during the Rock 'n' Worship Roadshow.

This is a short video of us singing along with Hawk Nelson as they play "The Show."


Being captivated by ACOGY graduate Alex Bates' performance in Warner Pacific College's play, "The Curious Savage."

Thank you all for the prayers for our wonderful students!

In Christ,

Youth Pastors Garth and Kathy Hamilton


Here are some bonus pictures:




Kathy sharing Moments for Missions with our congregation


Observing communion


A goofy shot of Will, Kenny, me, and Victoria in the church parking lot

Helping Allison move


Derek, Brandy, and Ben dash for their seats during Fruit Basket Upset