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Beech Valley Baptist Church in Sugar Grove to Participate in Strive to Revive Cardiac Arrest Rescue Program

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High Country Press Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (BCBSNC), the North Carolina Council of Churches, the American Red Cross and Rep. Becky Carney have selected Beech Valley Baptist Church as one of more than 200 places of worship across the state to participate in Strive to Revive. The program aims to reduce deaths related to cardiovascular disease by providing automatic external defibrillators (AEDs) and CPR training to places of worship across North Carolina. “Our congregation is committed to protecting the health of our members, and Strive to…

Calvary Baptist Takes Part in Cardiac Arrest Rescue Program


The Sylva Herald

“Our congregation is committed to protecting the health of our members, and Strive to Revive helps us take this commitment to the next level,” said the Rev. Avery Brown, church pastor. “With more than 50-75 people attending our church each week, we have the potential to save lives and make a real difference in our community.”

Strive to Revive kicked off in Charlotte in 2010 by awarding 20 organizations with AEDs and CPR training. BCBSNC, the North Carolina Council of Churches, the American Red Cross and Carney are committed to expanding the program statewide by distributing AEDs and providing CPR training to places of worship across North Carolina with the goal of reaching all 100 counties.

Immigration Reform: Time is Running Out


NC Policy Watch

This week, House Speaker John Boehner stated flatly that there will not be any conference with the bipartisan Senate immigration reform bill. We’re hearing one excuse after another about how immigration reform is too complicated and there isn’t enough time for a vote. After months of dithering, it’s clear that House leaders are hoping to run out the clock on immigration. If it holds true that the House doesn’t vote on any other immigration bills, then an amendment to deport DREAM-eligible immigrants — which passed with overwhelming GOP support in June — will be the only immigration measure to have received a vote on the floor of the House in 2013.

For I Was Hungry and You Gave Me Nothing


The Jefferson Post

Have you ever gone to bed hungry? Have you ever skipped a meal so that your children could eat? Have you ever waited in a long line to take home a bag of leftover groceries that was no longer fit for store shelves?

Did you know that 1 in 6 North Carolina households reported serious problems affording adequate nutritious food at some point last year, according to new data released by the U.S. Department of Agriculture today. Of the North Carolinians experiencing this food insecurity, some 5.5 percent experienced very low food security – meaning that one or more household members had to reduce their food intake at least some time during the year.

Why I Went to the Prayer Vigil for Immigration Reform

Durham Prayer Vigil for Immigration Reform

Durham Herald-Sun

On Sunday August 25, about a hundred Durham residents and faith leaders from seven different traditions gathered at the People’s Plaza to pray for our elected officials. As people with different stories, different colors of skin, even different faiths, we were united in our hope that Rep. Butterfield, Rep. Coble, Rep. Price and their colleagues in the House will support a just and moral immigration reform that offers a pathway to citizenship, unifies families, supports workers, and moves us forward together.

The Liberal Protest that Would Shock the Right: Moral Monday

Photo by Michael Burns


Every week prayers and gospel songs infuse the air and participants offer blessings to the latest batch of 100 or so activists entering the Raleigh General Assembly building to commit civil disobedience. If you’re not from here, it may all seem a little counter-intuitive: A movement for inclusive and just secular governance that is deeply inflected with Christian ethics and arguments.

Social Service Groups to Enroll NC Residents for Subsidized Insurance


Raleigh News & Observer

They plan to fan out across the state visiting community centers, school gyms, churches, libraries, waiting rooms and shopping centers. Their goal: Sign up as many North Carolina residents as possible for subsidized insurance under the nation’s health care law.

How NC Tax-reform Plans Could Fray Safety Nets


The News & Observer

These are difficult times. We pray that our lawmakers and governor will demonstrate compassion for our fellow North Carolinians who need food, clothing, health care and shelter and for the many charitable nonprofit organizations that provide this support.

Laurinburg Presbyterian Lets People Grow Food on its Property


The Fayetteville Observer

Sam Thompson was looking for a sunny spot to plant tomatoes. He ended up leading an award-winning community revolution. Thompson, an elder at Laurinburg Presbyterian Church, pitched the idea of a community garden to the church six years ago. What began as a creative use for otherwise empty church property was recently awarded an equipment grant by the North Carolina Council of Churches and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina. “We’re using the grant funds to dig a well,” Thompson said. “Wouldn’t you know this would be the wettest June in years.”

Grant to Strengthen Community Garden Program

United Metropolitan Missionary Baptist

Winston-Salem Chronicle

The Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (BCBSNC) Foundation has partnered with the North Carolina Council of Churches to provide grants to faith-based organizations to help them supply healthy eating alternatives to their members and underserved communities.

United Metropolitan Missionary Baptist Church (UMMBC) is one of 20 faith-based organizations that have received a $5,000 Healthy Eating Equipment Grant. The church will use the grant to purchase much needed equipment and supplies to support the 10 gardens that now comprise the S.G. Atkins Community Gardens at Winston-Salem State University.

Piney Grove Baptist Ministries Helped with Healthy Eating Equipment Grant

Piney Grove Baptist

Mt. Airy News

Piney Grove Baptist Church’s food ministries recently got a boost from the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation (BCBSNC) in the form of a $5,000 healthy eating equipment grant. The effort is a partnership between BCBSNC and the North Carolina Council of Churches to provide equipment for 20 faith-based organizations to bring healthier food to their members and communities. More than $90,000 in equipment grants are being used to provide canning and cooking supplies, expand church community gardens and increase storage for fresh produce.

Preparing the Way: Blessed are the Peacemakers



Jesus was a peacemaking, blessed child of God, but he also was an “other.” Reviled and persecuted, he was the paperless son of displaced immigrant parents. The prophetic iconoclast. That guy who hung out with those people, the type most modern leaders would not associate with, except for a photo opportunity at a Thanksgiving Day soup kitchen. Let us remember on Sunday when we celebrate his resurrection, that Jesus was crucified because he was an outsider whose way of doing things scared and angered the powers-that-be.

Letter to the Editor: On Pink Licenses

The proposed pink license design

Raleigh News & Observer

There’s no shortage of solutions in search of problems these days in Raleigh. One classic example is the proposed pink licenses for young immigrants who are granted Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. The special licenses, approved by Gov. Pat McCrory, were neither requested by law enforcement nor designed to follow what other states have done.

Conference Explores Dimensions Of Food Justice


By Eric Ginsburg, YES Weekly

Dozens of organizations and hundreds of people from throughout the area came together in Greensboro last week to talk about an issue central in everyone’s lives: food. The Come to the Table conference, held at UNCG, was designed to assemble people who are working on and concerned with food issues to learn, network and organize around food access and justice.

Faith and Weight Loss: NC Churches Encourage Members to be Healthy

Velma White_56

Public News Service – NC

Weight loss is the most popular New Year’s resolution being made by North Carolinians and people around the country, according to new data from the University of Scranton. The goal of being healthier is even making its way into churches around the state, through a program sponsored by the North Carolina Council of Churches.