The CSRM Board of Trustees met September 18-19 to formulate plans for the future. God has blessed us greatly during these past two years of reinvention and transition.
Our meeting started with a devotion from Luke 9:62, “But Jesus told him, ‘Anyone who puts a hand to the plow and then looks back is not fit for the Kingdom of God.” We discussed the need to look ahead at how God will direct and use CSRM rather than some of the struggles we faced the past two years.
Our discussions centered around a SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses. Opportunities, and Weaknesses) Our Strengths include our resource development of books, blogs, and video presentations through Overwhelming Victory Press and Overwhelming Victory Flicks. Another strength is our work around the world with international ministries. We discovered a weakness in the recruitment of various partnerships. The board voted to invite partnering through giving of finances and time. Some opportunities include developing resources for volunteer sport, recreation, and fitness leaders. The main threat we see is in our finances and funding.
Please consider partnering with us in prayers and financially as we continue to develop resources and create relationships around the world through sports, recreation, and fitness ministries.
Last month when we had a follow up in one of our districts, where church leaders had organized a Sports Outreach. After having all sports activities completed (namely soccer and netball which are the most loved in Malawi) we gathered all the people to listen to the Word of God verbally proclaimed. After our Pastor shared the Word of God, one man stood and cried loudly and saying he needed to confess that he had been used to kill Albino people throughout the country. He further stated he wanted to receive Jesus Christ before, he surrendered himself into police hands.
This was a most shocking and amazing confession, as many people albino people have been killed for ritual beliefs in Malawi and Tanzania. All Police intelligence failed to trace the killers but through Sports Ministry Outreach a dangerous criminal surrendered to Christ and right now, he is the hands of police, but importantly is preaching the Word of God as well... from criminal to a preacher! But the Lord wasn't done....
At that same occasion 15 other people also confessed their sins and accepted Jesus Christ. We will not include any picture due to the sensitive matter, but I can assure you it was a very touching follow up and encouraging to see such people received Jesus Christ. We praise the Lord for His rich outpouring and we thank the entire CSRM family for their support and prayers.
CSRM's Global Network Partner - James Mhango - you can support James at the following...
For more information about CSRM's Global Network Partners -
Praise God that during an outreach follow-up in Kisii 14 children who received salvation were dedicated into class of believers which is the first step before Baptism. It was my greatest joy because most children may raise their hands during altar call for the sake of it but dedicating themselves to discipleship class and being officially dedicated to the membership of a church is the greatest achievement. The 14 children are now helping in evangelizing other unchurched children and the result is enormous. Child evangelism is more effective and appealing. 13 Churches have for a large outreach that will be led by the children.
Another Praise: For a young family who committed their lives to Christ during an outreach. This was after a young sister of a lady convinced the couple who had backslidden to join a CSRM Sports Outreach in a sports field. They had backslided and had given up to ever going back to church but during an out reach in Bungoma they accepted to carry on the work of Sports ministry, evangelism and followup.They are now very committed church believers and leading two discipleship classes.
Lastly Praise God for...
Pastor William from Kisumu who requested to be ordained as a CRSM minister leading Nyanza Region. This is an answer to my prayer because it is not easy to get a Timothy who will carry on the vision of the ministry with all his energy and commitment. His six children joined him and His wife for the ministry. His full sacrifice came when his second born son who was rude and cruel accepted salvation during sports outreach. This is a powerful answer God has given to us.
Pastor Charles Mwanda
CSRM Global Network Partner (GNP) Kenya
For more information about Pastor Mwanda and all CSRM GNP's including committing to prayerfully and financially support any CSRM GNP go to....
First and foremost, 2018 was a year which we have experienced the goodness of God in all 5 trainings we had in the year mentioned. It has been a year of awesome testimonies, through the trainings conducted under the flagship of CSRM Sports Ministry here in Malawi. We have seen pastors, church leaders accepting again Jesus Christ as their personal savior, after listening to the sports ministry tools for preaching the word of God.
It was amazing to experience and see at one training, 13 church leaders and pastors, confessed their sins and re-committed their lives to the Lord and Savior – JESUS Christ. A month later we went back to encourage our dear brethren in the Lord. We found the church has transformed the membership and the building. The church leaders not only recommitted to Jesus Christ but they testified with other leaders, that the tools of Sports Ministry are very helpful and powerful to use in bringing the word of God. One was touched with the verse: “Where the heart is, its where one spends his/her time and money.”
The Baptist church which had a dirt floor now has concrete and other ministries have been born within the church such as kids ministry, outreach ministry, sports ministry and a fundraising committee was established. The church had only 102 memberships, but now, it has increased in membership up to 206! The church pastor, could not believe what he was seeing and how members who were only Sundays worshippers have turned to participating members in everything activity done at church. Above that kids ministry is going very much strong and every week this ministry is joined by new kids.
The church leaders are so puzzled with the way God is using Sports Ministry tools to bring His people close to Him. Pastors and church leaders did know that this tool can covert Muslims to Christianity, it’s not easy here in Malawi, as they have been preaching by using crusades but no one came from Muslim belief to accept Jesus Christ as the true Son of God. As in all 5 trainings and follow ups activities, 210 Muslims came to Christianity and accept Jesus Christ as their personal Savior.
The sports ministry trainings and outreaches, conducted this year, have had a very positive impact in more than 178 churches, as they have now new crop of ministries within churches because they now have the tools of sports ministry! Sports Ministry at first was regarded as a time waster or something done by those who have questionable character, but in the long run, such belief has been washed by the hands of God through these trainings we have had in Malawi. Now almost 1000 churches are inviting us to train their leaders. This is also a huge testimony. The church leaders and pastors, testified that the crowd of people who come and participate during the outreaches is amazing and very much encouraging.
Many kids have accepted Jesus Christ and enjoy playing and being active in sports and church activities, as this also wasn’t there before coming of sports tools imparted in church pastors and leaders. Sports Ministry has transformed church leaders and pastors including communities, it has reduced even crime rate which was committed mainly by idle youth, even at church these youth, couldn’t actively participate in any activities, they thought church is boring, but the coming of Sports Ministry and trainings, outreaches done in the community, have completely changed their mindsets and attitude towards the church. Now are involved in many activities at church, as others, have realized, rejuvenated their talents.
James Mhango - CSRM Global Network Partner
Anyone wishing to support James's ongoing ministry can do so at by logging on to the CSRM website and the Global Network Partner Page or the following hyperlink: https://csrm.z2systems.com/np/clients/csrm/campaign.jsp?campaign=9&fundraiser=1091
At times, I feel as though my entire life's dedication is to barbecue. I was born in Kansas City, Missouri, which is famous for their barbecue. I went to seminary and worked six years for a church in Texas, which is known for barbecue. The past twenty-one years of my life has been in and around Memphis, Tennessee, also known for barbecue.
I often tell friends that my life is all about encouraging grill masters and meat smokers to achieve their best in their craft. It is a wonderful path to walk.
In reality, there have been some recent events that have solidified more of a calling in another direction. In the end, the true calling will help people more than a barbecue reference. These events confirmed an early calling in my life toward a path of ministry. Let me explain.
My earliest memory of anything dealing with sports and recreation in churches came from my childhood. My parents kept me active in a program called Royal Ambassador’s, which was similar to the Boy Scouts. I was in ministry leadership later in life I referred to this program as the baptized Boy Scouts. I also played on a youth league baseball team sponsored by the church. Ed Christian, who had an appropriate last name for church participation, was my coach for the two seasons that I remember in Kansas City, Missouri. My claim to sports fame was playing with future major league pitcher Rick Sutcliffe in one of those seasons.
A move to Springfield, Missouri at the age of twelve opened up more opportunities for me. When I was a sophomore in high school, our church hired a director of activities. He led us in many after church fellowships, banquets, trips, and sports opportunities. God used the leadership of Bobby Shows to guide me toward a calling into the sport and recreation ministry. Following a position as a youth minister at a nearby town, I finished my college years working for Bobby as a recreation assistant in the church’s activities building.
A move to Fort Worth, Texas found me attending seminary and working as a minister of recreation in a local church. Following graduation, I worked in four different churches with responsibility for sports and recreation programs in each location.
When my local church work ended, I eventually ended up teaching sport and recreation administration at the University of Mississippi. My involvement in academics opened a door back into assisting the Association of Church Sports and Recreation Ministers (CSRM). I presented at conferences, and two years ago the organization recruited me to serve on their Board of Trustees. It appears that much of my life's dedication is toward using sports and recreation activities as a way of shaping lives to be like Jesus. In the long run, that is better than barbecue.
In our recent board meeting, we dealt with the resignation of our Executive Director. He had served just under a year with us following the reassignment of the original Executive Director into the position of Director of Resources. The resource division was going strong enough that the board did not desire to add extra work to his job. The financial limitation to finding a new Executive Director was that the person is required to raise their funds for expenses and salary.
With those limitations facing a possible hire and the dire shape of the current finances, a recommendation was made to find a local sports and recreation minister or a faculty member that is already receiving a salary. This person could fill the position during an interim period and work as a volunteer until the board could determine a direction for the future.
Hello, my name is David Waddell. I’m the new Interim Executive Director of CSRM.
The others on the board may not agree with this, but I knew we needed someone gullible enough to take on the position. Calvin Coolidge, in 1927 said, “I do not choose to run for president in 1928.” I wish I thought of that quote during the meeting. The board voted to name me as the chair of the board of trustees as well as the interim executive director for CSRM. The position is for one year unless the board chooses to nominate someone for the job during the next year.
I shared the news with my Department Chair to inform him the responsibilities would not interfere in my regular duties for Ole Miss. The university allows faculty to use time devoted to consultation and off-campus work like this. I was hoping he would tell me I couldn’t take the position, but instead he felt honored that the organization appointed me to the post.
A part of me feels like Esther, who realized her position as queen was designed by God to save the people of Judah. Recognizing she could die for seeking an audience with the king without his request, Esther went forth in confident faith that God may have chosen her, as her Uncle Mordecai stated was for “such a time as this.”
All of those previous experiences in my life, including the significant flaws and failures prepared me for “such a time as this.”
I look forward to working with the board, staff, and the hundreds of churches and ministries worldwide that use sports and recreation as a tool toward telling others about the love of Jesus. Despite my preparations in life for a position like this, I feel a great deal of anxiety as items such as fundraising is nowhere near my comfort level or giftedness. I covet your prayers as I am in great need of divine assistance in this situation.
Todd James retired a year ago from his CSRM Staff position as CSRM Director of Ireland but he remains active in Sports Ministry. Currently, Todd is training basketball players and coaches who have come to Ireland to attend the North Atlantic Basketball Academy. Todd leads bible studies with them and teaches them biblical principles based on John Wooden's Pyramid of Success. Todd will also be leading a seminar at the 2018 REACHgathering.
Todd and Celeste recently returned from a fun and refreshing Holiday in Toronto where they visited their children and grandchildren and receive great joy from spending time with their family
CSRM rejoices in efforts to enable the ongoing gospel impact of those who have served so faithfully through the years. Any retired or soon to be retired Sport, Rec. or Fitness Ministers who desire to join the current group of CSRM Staff Emeritus (Bryan Mason; Rodger Oswald; Warren Fish; Barb Wagenfurh; Rob Burns), should contact Dr. Greg Linville (firstname.lastname@example.org)
This picture brings tears to my eyes. One faithful saint continuing to worship Jesus despite horrible terror and persecution. Will you help CSRM stand with our brothers and sisters who are being persecuted in many countries around the world.
To All CSRM Supporters,
I am respectfully asking you to prayerfully consider making a significant impact on people who are suffering persecution due to their faith in Jesus. Your financial and prayerful support will be a huge encouragement for the churches and people CSRM is empowering in a country that is experiencing brutal religious repression. For obvious reasons I cannot disclose the name of the staff and partners we have in this country, nor am I at liberty to even name the country but I can tell you CSRM Staff literally risk their lives as they minister to the physical, educational, social and spiritual needs of thousands of displaced people. As they seek to meet such basic human needs they are also endeavoring to plant and grow churches using sport and recreational means. I do not exaggerate in relaying to you that Christians in this country experience all kinds of persecution including economic hardship, imprisonment, torture and even death. I can also assure you that our Staff go about their CSRM efforts with the utmost love, care and sensitivity to the majority population’s traditions and religions in order to model the love of Jesus, all while sharing the truths about Jesus so as to lead all whom are open to the gospel into a personal relationship with Him ….and might I add, all CSRM Staff are indigenous leaders of their country!
Your support will go directly to help finance the work in the afore mentioned, but unnamed country. In the past such funds have been given to help pay the medical bills of people injured when their church was bombed and/or they were personally attacked. It also is used to help fund health, fitness and wellness programs, leadership training, and to pay staff salaries. While any one-time donation would be most appreciated, I urge you to consider making a commitment to supporting the work in this country on a monthly basis. Once you have communicated your support, you will receive periodic reports on how your prayers and financial contributions have been utilized. It is indeed heart-warming to review pictures and hear the testimonies of lives that have been changed forever.
On behalf of the countless lives your support will make an eternal difference for, I thank you for your prayerful consideration. To make a financial contribution or commit to be a prayer supporter please either print off the following form and return it with a check or make your pledge via the digital instructions below by November 12th (Persecuted Church Sunday). Can I count on you to stand for our brothers and sisters who make up the Persecuted Church?
Dr. Greg Linville
Executive Director - CSRM
CSRM SUPPORT FORM
International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church | November 5, 2017
As an indication of my interest and support of CSRM, and as I am enabled by God, my desire is to provide support to CSRM as follows:
_______ I will pray regularly for CSRM Staff/Global Network Partners (circle those you are led to pray for)
_______ I will provide financial support to Staff/GNP’s as follows:
______________________ - Name of Person / Country I am providing the following support for
$_______ Monthly $_______Quarterly $_______ Yearly $______One Time Gift
Name____________________________ Email Address____________________________________
Address___________________________ City___________________State_____Zip Code_________
Thank you in advance of what you will do! And, thank you again, for all you have done for CSRM!
Return this form and indicate method of giving:
____Donate by check made payable to CSRM
____Donate online at www.csrm.org/support
____Donate using your bank’s online bill pay option
Information you may need:
Our Company Name – CSRM or The Association of Church Sports and Recreation Ministers
Our Address – 5350 Broadmoor Circle N W, Canton OH 44709
Our Phone Number – 330-280-0037
Our Bank Name – Huntington National Bank
Our Routing Number – 044115090
The amount of the check to be sent
The date of the month that you want your check to go out
___I am interested in receiving more information about planned giving opportunities such as:
Stocks, Bonds, IRA’s, Annuities, etc.
CSRM is a 501(C)3 non-profit organization. Your gift is tax-deductible.
Announcing 2018 REACHgathering Plenary Speaker - Susan Stewart: Olympian; Coach; Author; Local Church Sports Minister
Olympian Susan Stewart enjoyed a 22-year playing career, including 12 years on the Canadian Women’s National Team. She represented Canada at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, 1994 FIBA World Championships, 1991 Pan American Games (fourth place), and 1991 FISU World Student Games (third place).
Stewart had an incredibly successful intercollegiate basketball career at Laurentian University from 1989-95, winning the Ontario University Athletics (OUA) title five years during her six-year tenure and winning back-to-back Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) Championships in 1989-90 and 1990-91. Stewart had a standout season the following year when she was named OUA All-Star and OUA Player of the Year, and at the national level she was a CIS First-Team All-Canadian and the recipient of the Nan Copp Award for CIS Player of the Year. Stewart was an OUA All-Star four additional years during her playing career at Laurentian. To top it all off, Laurentian’s 1989-90 and 1990-91 women’s basketball teams were inducted into the Laurentian Voyageur Hall of Fame in 2005 and 2010, respectively. Stewart also received Laurentian’s Hall of Fame Vogayeur Award in 2003.
Stewart then played professional basketball in Germany and later attended the WNBA draft camp, where she was selected by the Detroit Shock. After her playing career, Stewart began coaching, beginning with Ontario Basketball club, Mississauga Monarchs, and Ontario Basketball high performance programs, including Centre for Performance and Bantam Development Program. She continued as a graduate assistant for the women’s team at Malone College. She has since coached various club and high school teams, and helped establish the Ontario Basketball club: Mississauga Wolverines. Stewart is a NCCP Level 3 Certified Coach and has worked as the Assistant Coach at Ryerson University and the University of Toronto.
Stewart has always been heavily involved in the sport community in her hometown, Mississauga where she currently runs a drop-in basketball program at her church, and she has served on the Mississauga Sports Council in various roles since 2009. She is currently President of the organization, and in 2010 she sat on the mayor’s Sports Taskforce and chaired the Annual Mississauga Sports Awards Dinner. She received a Volunteer Service Award in 2014 to recognize her contributions to the Council.
Stewart has received many additional awards and recognitions including being inducted into the Ontario Basketball Hall of Fame in 2016 and was the first basketball athlete inducted into the Mississauga Sports Hall of Fame. She earned another citation in 2015 when she received the Mayor Hazel McCallion Spirt of Sport Award and in the same year, she was also recognized by the Malone University Alumni Association when she was awarded Graduate School Alumna of the Year.
In 2015, Stewart published Unbreakable: The Autobiography of the Life of Susan Stewart, which chronicled her recovery from a devastating brain injury that left her in a coma for months. She claims only the power of God restored her life and has enabled her to bounce back from what was described as a condition she would never recover from. While she still suffers from some of the lingering effects of the brain aneurism and brain stem injury, her positive attitude and work ethic has made her an inspirational hero to all who know her. Stewart now works as a motivational speaker to deliver a message of encouragement and inspiration based on her life experiences and directs the Sports Ministry of her church where she also works in the children's ministry and Sunday School ministry.
It’s that time again!…….time to get those fantastic USA Interns on board in Wales!
It’s amazing to think that we have had American Interns with us every year for an unbroken 15 years! Every year they give by bringing an effervescent enthusiasm to our program…but they also receive as our staff and volunteers pour their lives into them, building a bespoke experience that challenges them, inspires them and changes their lives for good!
As you know, we mean business on this Internship. For 15 years, more than 140 full time and many part time young people have been involved in 100’s of ministries and reached 1000’s of people across Wales. Interns are placed in vibrant, missional churches across the partner counties where they have a bespoke ministry timetable designed around them matching the ministry needs within the county (serving in schools, youth groups, foodbanks as a few examples) and receive British accredited education in Christian Leadership. They also receive a trained, personal Mentor to encourage and guide them throughout their stay. Now that's quite a package!
Remember also that the Intern access points are very flexible….
Sept 2017 – Dec 2017
Sept 2017 – April 2018
Sept 2017 – July 2018 (preferred)
Jan 2018 – April 2018
Jan 2018 – July 2018
From September 2016 we transitioned out of our British/USA mixed internship into Missional Links Wales full time responding to the growth that we are experiencing. It’s truly amazing to see what God has achieved through 14 years of investment into this internship.
Take a look at the link for the goodbye video. It’s really rewarding to know that the internship for British interns will now be run by two former interns who married by the way!
As I mentioned, Missional links Wales http://www.missionallinkswales.org.uk has transitioned into an all USA internship and the interns will be placed into the counties where the partnerships exist to bolster the excellent work that is being done by the Welsh churches .
American, Kayla Cradit is enjoying her time with us right now.
Take a look at this link to a website that she has made for this year’s internship, you can read her blogs and also see stories from her journey on her ‘When in Wales’ Facebook page ( www.wheninwales.org)
Kayla is with us until July 2017. Her friend Brinsley will be joining her (and us) next month in January 2017.
Please pass this on to anyone you know who is between 18-25 or works with this age
Also, Please let me know what you think….. I’m interested in whatever ideas you may have for connecting us with 18-25 year old’s and will follow up every lead you give me. This is a great opportunity for them, your churches and your organisations.. You can have someone representing you in Wales all year round…how exciting is that!
Rev Rob Burns (B.A. MDiv. PGC Coaching & Leadership)
Founder and Director, International Relationships
Telephone: (029) 2022 9822
Mobile: + 44 (0) 7974-106761
Company No. 08820455