Friday, February 12, 2010

The Virtual Pew News 24, Book & Movie on the Way

Greetings, I figured it was time for an update regarding the on goings in the Furches Family, The Virtual Pew, and Mosaic Church.

It is likely obvious to the faithful that things may have appeared to be slow and not as much going on with The Virtual Pew lately due to the lack of postings. The truth is, nothing could be further from the truth. Let me explain.

Over the last few months a lot has been going on that has kept us pretty busy, including increasing some of the work with the Homeless in the area. This has been a tremendous ministry that is ongoing. Imagine having a homeless person thank you for a coat because they were afraid of dying I the freezing conditions, or another that is now living independently that you are helping understand the concepts of salvation and taking to church. Of course there is the need for some of these to provide Bibles and The Virtual Pew has done that. We have planned for February 27, our next big outreach where we will again take food, hot beverages (hot chocolate is the favorite) and of all things at their request, socks and shoes. Of course we need donations of each of those items. The Virtual Pew also purchased for Mosaic a larger coffee pot which allows us to make larger quantities of Hot Chocolate, Coffee, and Mocha. At Christmas we provided over 150 coats and items of winter wear, plus over 150 gifts that went to needy families. It was wonderful to see the community come together for all of this and we have an angel of a friend from another church who has also been helping out with some of the finance and cost involved. We will continue to accept designated donations for this ministry of which 100% of the designation will be used. We plan in the next three months to work at doing this on a weekly basis, and we would love to have a downtown facility to host the church, do a daily homeless outreach, provide housing for my wife and I, plus have overflow housing for the homeless. A note on this, I have never seen it like it is now. The majority of homeless that we are doing ministry to are not mentally ill. That is not to say there isn’t a large population of this group on the streets, there are, but the majority of people it seems as if we are ministering to are individuals who have fallen on bad luck, from loosing their jobs to having their homes foreclosed on. Of course working with this and providing some needed manpower is the fine folks of Mosaic Church, Chris, James, Mary and Mary, Adam who was at one time homeless as was Robert, Richard, his daughter and many, many others from Mosaic and other churches who have donated items and money. Associated with this ministry, we will also be making the purchase of 2 nice Bibles this week to give to individuals who have been a part of this ministry.

The Virtual Pew has also been busy, along with Mosaic at continuing the ministry of The Mosaic ARC (Abuse Recovery Center.) We continue to see and speak to individuals that have gone through physical and sexual abuse. While we had an anonymous contributor for some time, those contributions have stopped and we are again providing services without the ability to reimburse one of the persons helping with the counseling. We still provide the services for whatever the person can afford to contribute and outside of the first meeting never mention the need to contribute. I give all moneys donated for the services I provide back to the church which covers the overhead of the meetings. I receive a direct salary from the church of $1,000 per month, and when money is available after designated ministry contributions, and available funds, I take a maximum of $300 per month from The Virtual Pew. It was nice to have 2 months, December and January, where I was able to draw that salary. I have not been able to draw a salary for the month of February, and normally not for an additional 7-8 months of the year. We do have a couple of people who are tithing and contributing to The Virtual Pew on a monthly basis and this allows us to continue the ministry work we do and for those individuals from Ohio, Florida, and occasionally other locations, we are extremely grateful and want you to know God is using your contributions.

The Mosaic ARC program is something I value as I get to see the help this program provides. We would still love to present in the Wichita area for no charge, and around the country for expenses to present on the subject of physical and sexual abuse. I must challenge the church on this issue, please make an effort to educate your people. I just spoke at length this week to an individual who had a church small/cell group tell him that God caused the abuse in their life to happen so he could use it. Please understand the serious mistake of this theology in that you are saying God uses and causes sin so he can accomplish his purpose, but you also have no idea how much you can turn others away from God with this message, it is devastating and the truth is, God is so perfect, so holy that he don’t make sin happen. While he can turn something which was meant for evil and use it for good, it is a totally different concept than saying God caused it to happen. I unfortunately run into this type of issue on a regular basis and I pray the church would show compassion, and be a part of helping the person recover from this horrible sin perpetuated to and on them, not make it worse.

There is more about what is going on with our ministry but I will share that after the information regarding Mosaic Church here in Wichita.

I am amazed at how God is blessing this church. We are continuing to grow and if everyone is there we are at capacity for our 50 or so seats. If we continue this trend over the next few months we will be discussing among leadership the need to go to two services. We also have contributing needs related to the facility. There has been heating and furnace issues since we moved into the facility. We have received in the past resistance from the landlord to fix those problems and many of those problems which I don’t think we should have been responsible for we had to fix. One such example is this last months gas bill of over $750. I am confident that there are other units in the facility that we are paying for due to the issue related to the furnace problems. I am praying that another facility would either open up, or that God would work on the heart of the landlord to fix this problem. I personally would like to move towards the purchase of a facility that could seat upwards of 125, (in a coffee house style set up with tables) and then that facility be used as a daily outreach ministry, provide housing for my wife and I, and overflow or emergency housing for additional needed staff and the homeless. There is a huge need for this in the downtown Wichita area and our numbers and ministry would grow over being in a better environment, but ownership is going to be of incredible importance. The primary purpose of the facility would clearly be ministry and for this to happen, we would need help from individuals in the community and across the country who see the need for this type of ministry. Be in prayer about that as it is important to be accountable for the finances God has provided. While we receive $1,000 a month from our sponsoring agency, that will cease in the late fall, early winter of this year.

Mosaic has other good news, the tutoring program continues to grow and we are presently close to capacity for the students we can see without additional volunteers from the church and community. Currently we have 4 committed volunteers to help out, but we set as capacity 10 students with this number of tutors. Currently we have if everyone is there, 10 students. We will not be able to accept more students unless some of the present students either leave, or we pick up additional teachers.

Mosaic is also doing a Sunday school, movie themed class. So far we have been averaging 10 students and are presently doing a study from the movie The Book of Eli. We plan to use other movies at the completion of this study as well as music and more.

We also finally have a worship leader at Mosaic. Chris Marshall has been coming to Mosaic for sometime and participating on the worship team. The worship team and I recognized his ability in this area and granted him leadership. There has already been a noticeable difference for the team and for the church.

There is more going on at Mosaic and the above are but a sample of that. If you want to subscribe to the Mosaic mailing list announcing upcoming events please respond to this email and ask for that subscription.

Now as to The Virtual Pew and my ministry; to the pleasure of some, to the concern of others two major things have been going on that is taking up a bulk of my time. Both of those are in relation to the story of The Keystone Kid. We are in final negotiations for a movie to be made by Tiroma Films out of Tulsa Oklahoma. I will be meeting with them for the final meeting within the next month. Currently review of the manuscript has been taking place for the writing of the screenplay. I have had assurance from Tiroma that 2010 is going to be the year for The Keystone Kid.

Many are also aware of the book The Keystone Kid. Here is the good news; another edit of that book is taking place to get it ready for publication. So far, with almost half of the book done, there has been a reduction of approximately 55 pages, and some 17,000 words. I personally believe it reads much better, and is certainly shorter than it originally was. On the publication of the book, due to time constraints and the advice of several others, I am likely going to self-publish the book. Despite having great reviews from those who have read it, the national coverage of the stories, there are still some serious time constraints. I am looking at what appears to be the best company available and the book will be available in both paperback and hardback, and the good news, also available with electronic media such as Kindle and Apple’s ipad. The company is also going to provide a national advertising campaign for print, radio, and television and I will be providing support for the book. There will also be insurance coverage on the book to encourage major companies to carry the book.

Now with both of the above areas, there is going to be some costs and fundraising that is going to have to be done. This is actually the case in most situations, especially related to independent film and self publication. That said, don’t be surprised if in the near future you hear about more issues related to this. While some have already helped with some of the initial costs related to the film and the book, we are close to being ready to see the fruit of these two efforts. I could say a lot more for now, but will for now, let the interest and thoughts perk.

That is what is going on for now, and I certainly thank each of you for the prayers, financial support, and encouragement. I am blessed to see God work every day, and while I personally have rough days and tough times, I still know how good God is and I am continuing to move forward, hopefully you are as well.

Blessings and always feel free to contact us at any time.


PS as a reminder, any designated funds that come into homeless outreach, or Mosaic ARC are given back 100% to those particular ministries. We do honor all designations.

We also want to encourage folks to look at some of the movie reviews, interviews, and controversial articles as of late from The Virtual Pew, if the below links don't work go to original link at The Virtual Pew.

Avatar Review talked about in national press, controversial.

My Interview with Santa Claus

Legon Movie Review Some in Hollywood Still Don't Ge It

The Book of Eli, Some In Hollywood Do 'Get It

My Interview with Dr. Tony Campolo On God and The Arts

Leap Year, Movie Review for Valentines Day

The Waltons Movie Collection DVD Review

Transfer Growth in the Church, Are We Breaking Jesus Heart (Very Controversial)

To view the following, just click on the video, if the video don’t appear, click on the link

Click here to follow The Virtual Pew on Twitter

Mike Furches on Faceboook.

Click here to visit Mosaic Wichita, the Church in Wichita Kansas where Mike is the pastor.

Click Here to Go to The Virtual Pew Daily Verse and Read The Bible in a Year Passages

Click here for booking information to have Pastor Mike come speak or perform, from speaking to music or magic, something for all groups.

You can also Help The Virtual Pew by shopping on our web site or at Amazon, click here to shop at Amazon and help The Virtual Pew, it won't cost you anything extra, but we get a small percentage of the purchase.

Click to visit with Pastor Mike regarding any of your needs. He will respond to each request personally, and if need be refer you to one of our other pastors.

Click to visit and join the new group The Virtual Pew, at MySpace. Become a part of a different kind of Christian group, check out the page for more information,all welcome, including those who are not followers of Jesus.

Click to visit the Virtual Pew Website and become a part of that ministry.

Click to subscribe to my blog

Click to visit and join our sister group at MySpace Hollywood Jesus.

Click to visit Mary Jane Furches' new MySpace Page

Now for those that do not know, make sure you check out the numerous articles and blogs by checking out the archives. If visiting The Virtual Pew or MySpace they are archived on the left hand side of the page. Scroll down to where you see newer or older listed under archives and then click there. There are hundreds of postings so make sure to check out the archives. You can also contact me for a free e-book pre edit version of The Keystone Kid at mike@thevirtualpew.comYou can visit and on the front page down on the left side you sill see our store. Your purchase provides needed funds to The Virtual Pew. If you do not see something to purchase you can click on the search engine, (do not put anything in the search box at this time). You will be taken to Amazon where you can search for anything you desire. Hopefully you will consider a gift to The Virtual Pew.

Now I get asked this quite often, Can we repost your blogs or articles? The short answer to that is, what an honor that you would ask, and by all means, spread the word.Here is our contact information

The Virtual Pew
P.O. Box 17731
Wichita, KS 67217

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