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Religion

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Eric Winslow
6 days ago
"We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time." - T.S. Eliot. Photo by Eric Winslow
Pastor Janna Mikkelson shepherds the faithful at the Lutheran Church in Pioneer. Her outstanding sermons, which are available on the church's website, are relevant and Biblically-centered. In the rest of the civilized world, it may not be so rare to see a woman in the pulpit, but in Amador County female spiritual leaders are few and far between. The last woman we saw at the head of a congregation along the Highway to Heaven was way back at the beginning, at the second stop along way with Karen Siegfriedt at the Trinity Episcopal... [Read more]
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Jack Mitchell
2 weeks ago
The crew at Rally for Allie worked all day. Photo courtesy to the Amador Ledger Dispatch

“This is why I love Amador County,” and “This is why I live in Amador County.” These were sentiments shared by everyone who attended the Rally for Allie at St. Katharine Drexel Parish on the evening of August 6. More than 600 people filled the spacious Parish Center and spilled into the parking lot, all in the name of raising funds and the hearts and hopes of 12-year-old Jackson resident Allie Olivarria and her family.

On April 27 of this year, Olivarria’s life completely flipped the day she was diagnosed with leukemia. Leukemia...

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Roger Riggsby
3 weeks ago
Father of the English Reformation, King Henry VIII

When you discuss the reformation it needs to be noted that there were many reformations in the western branch of the Christian Church. There was a Protestant Reformation, but there was also a Roman Catholic Counter-Reformation, as well as an English Reformation, each of which represented distinctly different situations involving doctrine and leadership.

The most widely accepted name in the first reformation is that of Martin Luther, a Priest/Monk and professor of Theology in the early western branch of the Christian Church (known...

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Eric Winslow
3 weeks ago
Faith Lutheran Church in Pioneer
On August 5, 1620, a ship called the Mayflower departed from Southampton, England on its first attempt to reach a new world where the religious devotees on board hoped to build a "city on a hill" that would stand as a glowing testament to the reformed faith which was being persecuted and oppressed in the old world. In a way, the pilgrims on the Mayflower had embarked upon their own "Highway Heaven" in their struggle to live out their vision of a puritan faith that they would bring to America where, 400 years later, more than 20,000... [Read more]
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Guest Commentator
07/21/2016 1:45 PM

For three days, a group of 250+ teens and adults belonging to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints recently walked and pulled handcarts along the historic Mormon Emigrant Trail. The trail starts just off of Highway 88, near Bear River, at an elevation of 7,300 feet. Steve Brown organized this trek with the help of his wife, Celeste, and their friends, in order to recreate the trials and tribulations of their ancestors.

In June of 1848, members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, known as Mormons, took...

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Via Press Release
07/21/2016 1:44 PM
George Williams and his 1967 Camaro won the People’s Choice award.

The Amador County Council 1849, Knights of Columbus, held its second annual Knight Rider Car Show on Saturday, July 16, 2016, in the parking lot of St. Katharine Drexel Parish Center, in Martell.

With the help of more than 45 business sponsorships from Amador County and beyond, this year’s event was a huge success, as just over 80 cars were displayed.

The Car Show Committee, headed by David Payne, added one new feature: the People’s Choice Award. Members of the general public attending the show were able to vote for the car of...

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Eric Winslow
07/14/2016 1:15 PM
The church formerly known as Sutter Creek United Methodist has merged with the United Methodist Church of Jackson to become Creekside United Methodist Church. Photo by Eric Winslow
The United Methodists of Amador County have intensified their unity to an even greater degree ever since two local congregations have combined to create the Creekside Methodist Church, located at the historic white chapel with the towering spire on Main Street in the town of Sutter Creek, right next to the Town Hall on the south bank of the stream named for the famous father of the Gold Rush. In fact, in 1848 John Sutter himself spent a good deal of time in this little gem of a city, affectionately known as "the Jewel of the... [Read more]
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Eric Winslow
07/07/2016 10:51 AM
The Amador Free Will Baptist Church in Pioneer. Photo by Eric Winslow
Twelve is one of those Biblically significant numbers. There were twelve tribes of Israel in the Old Testament, as well as twelve Apostles in the New Testament. In the Book of Revelation, the Virgin Mary wears a crown of twelve stars. And everybody knows there were traditionally twelve days of celebration when Christians used to commemorate the calendar days between Christ's birth and the arrival of the Magi from the East. Being such an important figure in the holy scripture and tradition, there is little wonder that the twelfth stop... [Read more]
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Roger Riggsby
06/23/2016 11:12 AM

After taking a little break to go through the history of the Bible, I will pick up where I left off with the handling of the early heresies and the Nicene Creed in 325 A.D., and then the adoption of the final version of Holy Scripture in the early 400’s.

I need to make some personal observations on this next phase of history as we begin to look at the Middle Ages. The beginning of the Christian religion obviously starts with the birth, life, death and Resurrection of Jesus. It continues with his commandments and ministry...

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Eric Winslow
06/16/2016 1:25 PM
The youth-in-community group UTurn will be celebrating its sweet 15-year anniversary on Friday, June 24, from 7 to 10 p.m. Everyone is invited to come join the fun. UTurn has been kickin’ it for a decade and a half at New Life Christian Center, on Sutter Hill, at 87 West Ridge Road, in Sutter Creek, across from Gold Country Lanes. On the Friday of the anniversary party, there will be inflatables, games, prizes, a chance to win a Go-Pro camera, food and beverages. The Bridge Band from Valley Springs will be playing live music, and... [Read more]
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Roger Riggsby
06/08/2016 10:24 PM

Picking up from where I left off in my last column, the first fully canonized Bible, both Old and New Testaments, was accepted by the Christian Church in the year 303 AD.

From here, I think we need to look at how the Bible began to be used. In all reality, it was hundreds of years before the common person even had access to reading the Scriptures. The first real versions of the Bible that were available in some kind of language that could be read was in the mid 1300’s to the mid 1400’s. John Wycliffe transcribed the first English...

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Eric Winslow
06/02/2016 11:38 AM
The Truth and Freedom Memorial of the Church at the Cross, Pine Grove. Photo by Eric Winslow
"When freedom climbs, it mounts the cross." Maybe it was the continuing vertical ascent up that mountain, which becomes noticeable as you leave Pine Grove along Highway 88 - or maybe it was a mixture of thinning atmosphere and spiritual inspiration, which I had begun to imbibe after visiting so many fine houses of God along that stretch of road beginning at Sutter Hill and now making its serpentine way into the big trees whose tops just start to touch the bracing air at 3,000 feet above sea level - but, for whatever reason, that's... [Read more]
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Mike Sweeney
06/02/2016 11:27 AM
Dahkota Brown and Adam Dalton. Photo courtesy to the Amador Ledger Dispatch
On May 28 and 29, the Jackson Rancheria Band of Miwuk Indians hosted the 3rd Annual Chaw’se Day Celebration at Chaw’se Indian Grinding Rock State Historic Park. The weather was perfect and hundreds of people came together to enjoy native culture in a place that simply has a special feel to it. The event showcased native foods, the rebuilt roundhouse, dancing, singing, games, crafts and more. People in attendance got to see first-hand that native culture is alive and strong today. Everywhere you looked, young people were learning... [Read more]
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Roger Riggsby
05/12/2016 9:11 AM

According to the Guinness organization the following statistics are available. The Bible is the world’s largest, best-selling and most distributed book. Two and a half billion copies were printed between 1815 and 1975, but recently the numbers have risen to five billion. The English version of the Good News, the New Testament, has sold over 17.5 million copies. The entire Bible has been translated into over 349 languages with 2,123 languages having at least one version in those languages.

First and foremost, the name by which most...

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Via Press Release
05/12/2016 12:55 PM

A workshop titled, “Women and Spirituality: Breaking Barriers,”will be held at Sophia’s Well on Saturday, May 14, from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. It will feature reflections on the feminine creative principle and our need to re-member the Divine Feminine. The workshop will also feature a retelling of Christian scripture that is inclusive of women’s experience.

In addition, there will be music, poetry, meditation, writing and sharing. The event will be hosted by Marilyn Nutter, Rev. Tracy Johnson and Lynnea Honn, and the cost will be by...

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Eric Winslow
05/05/2016 10:33 AM
Pine Grove Mt. Zion Church. Photo by Eric Winslow
Everybody has heard something about Zion. Some people know it as the key word in the term for the state of Israel's political philosophy; others remember it as the last refuge for humanity in the Matrix series of science fiction films. If you know the Hebrew Bible, you will recognize Zion as a synonym for God's holy city of Jerusalem, the ultimate social ideal. If you are a loving and attentive reader of the Old Testament, and you also happen to know anything about Amador County, you will immediately smile when you recognize the... [Read more]
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Roger Riggsby
04/28/2016 11:41 AM
As mentioned in earlier articles, the first followers of Jesus were Jews who mostly gathered in Synagogues. Soon, however, non-Jewish people began to appear at these meetings and, in fact, one of St. Paul’s early sermons in the Book of Acts addresses his audience as “You Israelites and others who fear God, my brothers ... you descendants of Abraham’s family and others who fear God" (Acts 13:26). This implies that there were gentiles who started believing in the Good News of Jesus teachings, as well as Jews. To amplify this, in the... [Read more]
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Via Press Release
04/21/2016 12:51 PM
The Ministerial Association of Amador County invites you to join us for an hour of focused prayer for our government, churches, military, family, educational system, the media and our local businesses. Pray with us in Detert Park, in Jackson from noon to 1 p.m. on Thursday, May 5, 2016. We will gather at the stage area. We hope to see you there. [Read more]
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Via Press Release
04/21/2016 12:48 PM

Community Christian School in Pine Grove will be holding our annual Open House on Thursday, April 28 at 6 p.m. Come and meet our teachers and check out our classrooms! Also, this is an excellent chance to preview our Kindergarten for the 2016-17 school year. Enrollment applications will be available on this night as well. We hope to see you there!

Community Christian School is located at 14045 Ponderosa Way, in Pine Grove. It provides a comprehensive, Christian education for students Pre-K through 8th grade. For more information...

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Eric Winslow
04/14/2016 2:27 PM
The humble home of the Healing Word Church of Pine Grove. Photo by Eric Winslow

Throughout the ages, people have tried to describe the Christian Church using a variety of illustrative metaphors. Some have pictured it as a court of law where the guilty (sinners) are condemned (by Satan) to (everlasting) punishment until the Just Judge (God) sees evidence of their true innocence (in the blood of Jesus, with which repentant sinners must be covered to receive forgiveness and eternal reprieve). Let’s call this the legal metaphor — the Christian Church as a court of law.

Others have seen Christ’s Church as if it...

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