RELIGION MAY 14, 2015 BAPTIST CHURCH The Pulpit Search Committee of the Leisure World Baptist Church will introduce pastor candidate Ivar Ensminger and his wife, Margaret, to the congregation Sunday, May 18, at 9:45 a.m. in Clubhouse 4.
Ivar spent four years in U.S. Air Force and still maintains his pilot’s license. They were married in 1966 in Norwalk and have two sons, Ivan and Arden. They were saved at the age of 27 in the Bethany Baptist Church of Whittier and were called into the gospel ministry. After graduation from Pacific Coast Baptist Bible College they began a church in Corvallis, Ore. They came to Gethsemane Baptist Church in Long Beach in 1999 and currently serve there in associate ministries and as traveling evangelists. They make their home in the Bixby Knolls area of Long Beach. His message for this Sunday is titled “Everlasting Life.”
The congregation and choir will sing the hymns of old to reflect Pastor Ensminger’s theme. Sophia Penn will sing a special number, “The Holy City.”  
Sunday School will be held at 8:40 a.m. in the Art Room of Clubhouse 4. All are welcome. For more information, call 430-2920.

CALVARY CHAPEL
Calvary Chapel Bible Study invites everyone to a weekly Bible study this evening at 6 in the First Christian Chapel. The group will explore Ezra, Chapter 4, in which the Jews returning to their land are attempting to rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem.
All are welcome for prayer, worship and fellowship. For more information, call Phil or Pam O’Malley at 598-0270.

LITTLE FLOWER GUILD
Take a break by coming to the Little Flower Guild’s bingo party Sunday, May 18, in Clubhouse 2. Buy-in begins at 1 p.m. and must be completed before going to bingo tables. Players can speed up buy-in lines by having spending money ready in small bills or the correct change. Complimentary desserts and beverages will be provided by theLittle Flower Guild of Holy Family Church. Early Bird Bingo starts at 1:30 p.m.

HOLY FAMILY CATHOLIC
Holy Family Catholic Church will observe the Fifth Sunday of Easter, Sunday, May 18. The first reading is Acts 6:1-7; second, 1 Peter 2: 4-9 and the Gospel, John 14:1-12. An apologetics class will be held at 4 p.m., Thursday, May 22, in the Rectory Conference Room. The subject is “The Bible and History defend Catholic Dogmas.” All are welcome.
The Holy Family Church celebrates Sunday Mass at 8 and 10 a.m. and at noon.
The Vigil Mass is at 5 p.m., Saturday; daily Mass is 8:30 a.m., Monday-Friday.

FIRST CHRISTIAN CHURCH
First Christian Church has a Bible study with Jack Frost teaching from the book of Acts, chapters 23 and 24, at 9 a.m., Sunday. This is an open discussion session, and all questions are welcome.
The hospitality room is open at 9:30 a.m. with light refreshments, hot coffee and tea. All are welcome to join the fellowship.
Pastor Bruce Humes will begin the worship at 10:15 a.m. with praise, Scripture and prayer followed by Margaret Humes leading the congregation singing “Trust and Obey,” “It Is Well with My Soul,” “Now I Belong to Jesus,” and the communion hymn “There is a Fountain.”
The choir, under the direction of Anita Ragole, will sing special music.
Pastor Bruce will preside over the Communion meditation, prayer and service.
Jean Barker will read Scripture from 2 Corinthians 3:17-18: “But we all … are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.”
Pat Kogok will bring a special rendition of the country hymn, “Temporary Home.”
Pastor Gene Cherryholmes will give a message for the day “Better and Better.” As new creatures in Jesus, people progress from glory to glory.
First Christian Church will host the Hallmark movie “Safe Harbor” at 6 p.m., Friday, May 16. For more information, see the Arts and Leisure section.
Bible studies for the rest of the week are at 10 a.m. on Tuesdays with Pastor Bruce in the book of 2 Peter and at 10 a.m. on Thursdays with Pastor Gene in the book of Luke. Pastor Phil O’Malley of Calvary Chapel will teach Thursday at 6 p.m. finds in the book of Ezra.
For the Wednesday home study, contact Sue Dougherty at 431-5392.
Call the Church office at 431-8810 on Mondays, Wednesdays or Fridays between 9-11 a.m. for more information.
For all church functions, hearing enhancements are available at the front table.

SEAL BEACH SPIRITUAL LIVING
The Seal Beach Center for Spiritual Living has a quiet and meditative service at 8 a.m. At the 10 a.m. service, Rev. Joshua Reeves will give a talk on “The Power of Prayer,” and practitioners will join him for this lesson.
Guest singers will be Debbi Wheeler-Ure with Bill Wolfe at the piano.
The Pastoral Care Ministry group will meet Saturday, May 17, at 9 a.m. to support people experiencing a challenge. For more information, contact Rev. Juanita Gardner at (714) 895-3080 or love41nita@yahoo.com.
There will be a celebration of the life of Bob Heck on Saturday, May 17, at 2 p.m.  All are welcome.
The Untethered Soul group will meet from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Thursday, May 22, in the sanctuary. This is an ongoing group that discusses a book by Michael A. Singer exploring inward journeys and learning how to be free of limiting thoughts. Donations are accepted.
The center supports Women Helping Women (Men Helping Men), an organization supporting individuals in finding jobs. During May, the center will collect professional clothes, toiletries and other items for Women Helping Women. Donations are tax deductable. There are donation guidelines on the activity table.  For more information about Women Helping Women, visit www.whw.org.
Each Wednesday from 11:30 a.m.-noon, there is an opportunity to hear a relaxing meditation given by a practitioner-in-training.
For more information, call the church office at 598-3325.

CALVARY LOS ALAMITOS
Calvary Chapel Los Alamitos holds a weekly Sunday service at 9:30 a.m. at the church, 3021 Blume Drive in Rossmoor. Refreshments follow the service.
Pastor John Greenroyd will teach a verse-by-verse study in the Gospel of John.
A midweek service is held Wednesday at 7 p.m. Pastor Greenroyd is teaching the “Sermon On The Mount.” 
For more information, call the church office at 431-3464.

ASSEMBLY OF GOD
Rev. Curtis and Marsha Sample have joined the staff at Leisure World Assembly of God. Curt comes from Glassport, Penn., and Marsha is originally from Houston, Texas.
Curt evangelized and has pastored in several states. They have lived in Leisure World for about two years.
“We are excited about having the Samples on staff and look forward to their ministry among us,” said Senior Pastor John Heide.
Pastor Curt will speak at 10:30 a.m., Sunday, May 18, and Associate Pastor Dan Ballinger will share the devotion for the hymn sing beginning at 6 p.m. All services are in Clubhouse 3. All are welcome in this time of renewal. For more information, call 343-3655.

SISTERHOOD SHOLOM
Sholom Sisterhood will hold a craft day June 5 from 1-3 p.m. in Clubhouse 3, Room 7. Members will create a tallit or yarmulke, both of which are used in Jewish religious ceremonies. Making these ritual objects can add another layer of personal meaning to one’s spirituality.
The tallit, or prayer shawl, is used in religious ceremonies. Susan Michlin will teach the embroidery class, and people will be able to embellish their own tallit or purchase one from the Sisterhood by calling Linda Pearlman at 446-0583 by May 23.
A kippa, also known as a Yarmulke, is worn by many Jews around the world as a symbol of respect for God and a display of Jewish identity. Rabbi Galit Levy-Slater will teach the crochet class.
RSVP by May 30 to Henrietta Zarovsky at 596-3767.
Sholom Sisterhood’s first get-together was April 7. Friends had a chance to spend time with former friends, and new people made new friends. Several men joined the group for the evening, and everyone enjoyed dipping matzah in wine, or not, and then smothering it with chocolate.
A lot of the matzah got eaten before it was finished but there was enough for people to take home. The finished product was as diversified as the maker wanted it to be—with the different toppings of nuts, sprinkles, coconut and several others.
 Thanks to chef Susan Michlin, vice president, who purchased the ingredients. She added to the festivities by wearing her special apron, which is one big matzah (cloth, of course.)
Dues are $36, and the Sholom Sisterhood is open to all Jewish women, regardless of affiliation or non-affiliation with other organizations.
—Helene Goldberg and Leah Perrotti
CHURCH OF CHRIST
The Church of Christ meets at 1:30 p.m., Sundays, in Clubhouse 3, Room 3.
All are welcome to the service. Preacher David Dominessy from Downey ministers at the Imperial Highway Church of Christ in the morning and in Leisure World in the afternoon.
For information, call David at 320-3980.

ST THEODORES
St. Theodore’s Episcopal Church is an open and affirming congregation, and all are welcome. The Sunday service is held each week at 10:30 a.m. in the lobby of Clubhouse 3.
Sunday, May 18, will be the Fifth Sunday of Easter. The first reading from Acts 7:55-60 is the story of the stoning of Stephen, the first martyr of the church. The second reading from 1 Peter 2:2-10 recounts the building of the Christian Community as the spiritual house of God, and the Gospel lesson of John 14:1-14 uses the direct words of Jesus to his disciples about his impending departure. 
The Service of Holy Communion and Healing will be held at 11 a.m., Wednesday, May 21, at the chapel, 1240 Oakmont Road 52-B. The Homily will be about John Eliot, a Puritan missionary to the American Indians, whose feast day is May 21. The group also meets Wednesdays at 10 a.m. for Bible study; all are welcome.

ROCK CHURCH
The Rock Church, Seal Beach Campus, welcomes everyone to weekly services held at Marina Community Center, 151 Marina Drive, Seal Beach. Sunday services are at 9 and 11:15 a.m. in English and at 1:30 p.m. in Spanish.
For more information and links to the free weekly podcasts, visit the website at www.gototherock.com and click on the Seal Beach campus or call (714) 526-8233.

CONGREGATION SHOLOM
Congregation Sholom holds weekly services, conducted by Rabbi Galit Levy-Slater, in the lobby of Clubhouse 3. All are welcome. On Friday, the service begins at 7 p.m., followed by an Oneg Shabbat in Room 9. The service Saturday will begin at 9:30 a.m. The Kiddush will follow in Room 7.
There is a direct link to Rabbi Galit’s Ma’ariv service and her name “Rabbi Galit” is on the screen; just click that to hear the service.
People who are unable to attend services may log on to Sim Shalom, an online synagogue, at www.simshalom.com/online-synagogue-services for a brief Arvit (evening) service.
Services are streamed every afternoon at 4. Rabbi Levy-Slater leads the service on Thursdays.
Sim Shalom’s services can also be accessed from Rabbi Levy-Slater’s website, www.galityomtov.com.
For information on Congregation Sholom, call 594-4368 or 493-2680.

COMMUNITY CHURCH
Community Church welcomes the return of Pastor James Oliver to the pulpit Sunday, May 18. The Rev. Lee Hirt gave an inspiring message on Mother’s Day. The church looks forward to hearing from Rev. Bob Morley on Memorial Day weekend, Sunday, May 25.
Worship services begin at 9:50 a.m., followed by a coffee hour and fellowship in Edgar Hall.
The Scripture readings will be Acts 7:55-60, Psalm 31:1-5, 15-16, 1 Peter 2:2-10 and John 14:1-14.
Community Church will receive a special offering for church secretary Sue Long, Sunday, May 18. Sue will be traveling with a team of 12 people from her home church, Beachpoint Church, in Huntington Beach, to India in July.
Her team will serve a small tribe of about 250 people in a remote village where there is no electricity or running water. There the team will engage with the community and provide humanitarian aid and assistance with building projects and their daily chores. Sue is excited to experience this adventure of a lifetime and is encouraged by the love and support of the Community Church family.

SALVATION ARMY
The Home League of The Salvation Army will meet Monday, May 19, at 7 p.m. in St. Andrews Clubhouse 4. Greeters are Belinda McLeod and Leone Metros.
Ruth Mulnard from The Salvation Army’s Orange County Church at Tustin Ranch, will be the guest.
Ruth, a nurse who works with Alzheimer’s patients, will share her experiences and expertise. All are welcome to this educational evening.
The program will provide insight into how to help people and their families cope with the disease.
The opening exercises by Major Irene Seiler will include words of welcome, the Pledge of Allegiance and announcements.
The devotional time will include hymns led by Cherrie Green, piano accompaniment by Major Fred Seiler and an inspirational thought and prayer by Suleta Smith.
Refreshments will be supplied by Frances Benson and Barbara Chambers and served by tea hostesse Ann Hause and Leone Metros.
Door prizes are wrapped and distributed by Leanna Sharon with help by Bruno Verville.
A planning meeting will begin at 10 a.m., May 21, at the Seiler Residence; 13580 Cedar Crest, 110-L. Bring suggestions.

BOYS OF IWO JIMA
The following was submitted by Wanda Bemben of Mutual 1. “The Boys of Iwo Jima” is from the book: Heart Touchers “Life-Changing Stories of Faith, Love, and Laughter.” It is reprinted here with permission from Michael T. Powers.

by Michael T. Powers
special to the GR News

Each year my video production company is hired to go to Washington, D.C., with the eighth grade class from Clinton, Wisc., where I grew up, to videotape their trip. I greatly enjoy visiting our nation’s capitol, and each year I take some special memories back with me. This fall’s trip was especially memorable.
On the last night of our trip, we stopped at the Iwo Jima memorial. This memorial is the largest bronze statue in the world and depicts one of the most famous photographs in history -- that of the six brave men raising the American flag at the top of Mount Surabachi on the Island of Iwo Jima, Japan during WWII. Over one hundred students and chaperones piled off the buses and headed towards the memorial. I noticed a solitary figure at the base of the statue, and as I got closer he asked, “What’s your name and where are you guys from?
I told him that my name was Michael Powers and that we were from Clinton, Wisconsin.
“Hey, I’m a Cheesehead, too! Come gather around Cheeseheads, and I will tell you a story.”
James Bradley just happened to be in Washington, D.C. to speak at the memorial the following day. He was there that night to say good-night to his dad, who had previously passed away, but whose image is part of the statue. He was just about to leave when he saw the buses pull up. I videotaped him as he spoke to us, and received his permission to share what he said from my videotape. It is one thing to tour the incredible monuments filled with history in Washington, D.C. but it is quite another to get the kind of insight we received that night. When all had gathered around he reverently began to speak. Here are his words from that night:
“My name is James Bradley and I’m from Antigo, Wisconsin. My dad is on that statue, and I just wrote a book called Flags of Our Fathers which is #5 on the New York Times Best Seller list right now. It is the story of the six boys you see behind me. Six boys raised the flag. The first guy putting the pole in the ground is Harlon Block. Harlon was an all-state football player. He enlisted in the Marine Corps with all the senior members of his football team. They were off to play another type of game, a game called “War.” But it didn’t turn out to be a game. Harlon, at the age of twenty-one, died with his intestines in his hands. I don’t say that to gross you out; I say that because there are generals who stand in front of this statue and talk about the glory of war. You guys need to know that most of the boys in Iwo Jima were seventeen, eighteen, and nineteen years old.
(He pointed to the statue)
You see this next guy? That’s Rene Gagnon from New Hampshire. If you took Rene’s helmet off at the moment this photo was taken, and looked in the webbing of that helmet, you would find a photograph. A photograph of his girlfriend. Rene put that in there for protection, because he was scared. He was eighteen years old. Boys won the battle of Iwo Jima. Boys. Not old men.
The next guy here, the third guy in this tableau, was Sergeant Mike Strank. Mike is my hero. He was the hero of all these guys. They called him the “old man” because he was so old. He was already twenty-four. When Mike would motivate his boys in training camp, he didn’t say, “Let’s go kill the enemy” or “Let’s die for our country.” He knew he was talking to little boys. Instead he would say, “You do what I say, and I’ll get you home to your mothers.”
The last guy on this side of the statue is Ira Hayes, a Pima Indian from Arizona. Ira Hayes walked off Iwo Jima. He went into the White House with my dad. President Truman told him, “You’re a hero.” He told reporters, “How can I feel like a hero when 250 of my buddies hit the island with me and only twenty-seven of us walked off alive?”
So you take your class at school. 250 of you spending a year together having fun, doing everything together. Then all 250 of you hit the beach, but only twenty-seven of your classmates walk off alive. That was Ira Hayes. He had images of horror in his mind. Ira Hayes died dead drunk, face down at the age of thirty-two, ten years after this picture was taken.
The next guy, going around the statue, is Franklin Sousley from Hilltop, Kentucky, a fun-lovin’ hillbilly boy. His best friend, who is now 70, told me, “Yeah, you know, we took two cows up on the porch of the Hilltop General Store. Then we strung wire across the stairs so the cows couldn’t get down. Then we fed them Epson salts. Those cows crapped all night.”
Yes, he was a fun-lovin’ hillbilly boy. Franklin died on Iwo Jima at the age of nineteen. When the telegram came to tell his mother that he was dead, it went to the Hilltop General Store. A barefoot boy ran that telegram up to his mother’s farm. The neighbors could hear her scream all night and into the morning. The neighbors lived a quarter of a mile away.
The next guy, as we continue to go around the statue, is my dad, John Bradley from Antigo, Wisconsin, where I was raised. My dad lived until 1994, but he would never give interviews. When Walter Cronkite’s producers, or the New York Times would call, we were trained as little kids to say, “No, I’m sorry sir, my dad’s not here. He is in Canada fishing. No, there is no phone there, sir. No, we don’t know when he is coming back.”
My dad never fished or even went to Canada. Usually he was sitting right there at the table eating his Campbell’s soup, but we had to tell the press that he was out fishing. He didn’t want to talk to the press. You see, my dad didn’t see himself as a hero. Everyone thinks these guys are heroes, ‘cause they are in a photo and a monument. My dad knew better. He was a medic. John Bradley from Wisconsin was a caregiver. In Iwo Jima he probably held over 200 boys as they died, and when boys died in Iwo Jima, they writhed and screamed in pain.
When I was a little boy, my third grade teacher told me that my dad was a hero. When I went home and told my dad that, he looked at me and said, “I want you always to remember that the heroes of Iwo Jima are the guys who did not come back. DID NOT come back.”
So that’s the story about six nice young boys. Three died on Iwo Jima, and three came back as national heroes. Overall, 7,000 boys died on Iwo Jima in the worst battle in the history of the Marine Corps. My voice is giving out, so I will end here. Thank you for your time.”
Suddenly the monument wasn’t just a big old piece of metal with a flag sticking out of the top. It came to life before our eyes with the heartfelt words of a son who did indeed have a father who was a hero. Maybe not a hero in his own eyes, but a hero nonetheless.
Michael T. Powers, the founder of HeartTouchers.com and Heart4Teens.com, is the youth minister at Faith Community Church in Janesville, Wisc.

ASSEMBLY OF GOD
Faith Christian Assembly welcomes Heather Atkins as the new church secretary. She has that unique set of qualifications needed by the person who occupies the front desk of the church. When Faith Christian’s secretary of several years moved, it took some time to fill this special position.
When people call the church office, they will most likely speak with Heather, who has already proven herself to be a very capable and diligent worker.
Faith Fellowship Time is at 11 a.m., Tuesdays, in the Garden Room. The midweek Bible study is at 7 p.m., Wednesdays, repeated on Thursdays at 11 a.m., in the Garden Room.
To receive a free newsletter and for more information on the church, call 598-9010 or visit www.FCAchurch.net.

ROCKETTES
The Rockettes Bible Study has begun a seven-week DVD series on the “Power of Answered Prayer,” and booklets will be provided free of charge. Women can join at any time.
The first lesson covered individual prayer. Subsequent topics will cover how God answers prayers and how to develop prayers with a new focus.
The Rockettes is a non-denominational women’s Bible study group that meets in Clubhouse 6, Room B, every Friday from 2-4 p.m.

LITTLE FLOWER GUILD
The Little Flower Guild will meet today, May 15, in Clubhouse 2 at 1 p.m.
A representative from the Bellflower School District will present a gift on behalf of the Junior Leos, the children’s group of Lions Club International.
LW Cabaret Singers Betty Fritz, Ric Dizon, Tommy Williams and Linn Atkinson will entertain.
All are welcome.

REDEEMER LUTHERAN
Guest preacher Karen Merkel will give the sermon “Homesick for Heaven” Sunday at Redeemer Lutheran Church.
A resident of Mutual 6, she is the regional director for the World Mission Prayer League.
Assisting in conducting the service will be the Rev. Lynda Elmer, a new resident of Mutual 5, a retired pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. She, with her husband, Cedric, moved to LW from Pennsylvania.
Pastor Gil Moore and his wife, Lavona, will be away to attend graduation of a grandson from the University of Nevada in Reno.
The service with Holy Communion begins at 10:30 a.m. and will be followed by a coffee hour in the fellowship hall.
The acolyte will be Carmen Leslie, and Communion assistant, Jerry Brady. The choir will sing “Come, My Way, My Truth, My Life.”
The finance committee will meet in the conference room at 2:30 p.m., Tuesday, May 20.
A website, which features the congregation’s monthly newsletter, can be accessed at www.redeemerlutheransealbeach.com.
The Respite Center offers an adult day care program Tuesdays and Thursdays. For further information and registration, call 596-1209.