Articles

Uniting the Body

posted Mar 25, 2013, 3:02 PM by Susannah Francis   [ updated Apr 7, 2013, 11:15 PM ]

"Thrilled" is not a strong enough word to share the excitement that is in our heart at what God is doing to bring together local art ministry leadership here in the local community. We are so humbled that God has put this mission on our heart and seek Him for every step of the way. For many years, it has been a cry of our hearts through prayer and now that we have begun to see it happen before our eyes, we are just overjoyed at how He has made it possible!

Thursday, January 24th at 7pm, God gathered over a dozen of His arts leaders at the FHL office in Castleton to meet each other.  Each shared their passion for the call that God had placed on their heart to serve him in the local arts community. One in attendance was dance ministry leader, Tiffany Johnson who founded Sacred Dance Institute, a ministry that allows the talent of dance to usher in the Holy Spirit and bring about restoration and healing...they call it "deliverance through dance".  Another was worship leader Scott McElroy of Indy Vineyard, author of the compelling book "Finding Divine Inspiration" and founder of The New Renaissance arts movement.  Both called to separate areas of the arts, but both very much sharing the same heart to further the Gospel here in the Central Indiana area.  We invite you to watch this compilation of interviews and excerpts from the meeting to see just how powerful uniting the Body of Christian Artists can be!

Do you want to join this Army?  Our next meeting will be held in May. We invite you to be there. It only takes a willing heart and faith in our Lord to move mountains!

Contact Susannah@1heartarts.org for more info.

A Year Full of Partnerships

posted Dec 2, 2012, 9:27 AM by Susannah Francis   [ updated Dec 2, 2012, 9:50 AM ]

God has been so very amazing to us this year, giving us all that our hearts desired in the realms of developing more partners and friends in the ministry community. He said to us that this year would be about building a strong foundation for 1heart Arts Ministries and He was so very faithful to lead us through such a time. We would like to give God all the glory as we look back at this past year’s fruit in the area of ministry partnerships. Please join us in the journey! 

AMTC

We were overwhelmed at God’s clear path of provision for us to attend the Actor's Models & Talent for Christ (ATMC) SHINE event at the first of the year. He provided the funds for travel to Florida through Zach’s unexpected bonus at work, a free place to stay with my cousin (plus some great rekindling of that relationship!) and the favor for the CSO of AMTC to invite us as her guests. We were so honored and even our own personal ministry as artists was changed from our experiences there. When they returned in March, we were blessed to pray with the staff and given an amazing opportunity to minister to the attendees of the event. Plus, we supported four of our ministry friends as they auditioned. 

God shined brightly on us as we began the journey of traveling to SHINE again in July, this time with the sole intent to minister alongside dancer Wynter Veal-Drummond and her mother Janet. God not only provided the means for us to make another trip down to Orlando, but also allowed to meet another awesome actress model that traveled down with us (Stephanie Riley) and gave us the amazing open door to have our own ministry booth at the event. Wow…you read about it I know, but it still overwhelms me all that He did for us in allowing us to minister at that event. The story is not even close to being over, we continue our friendship with the AMTC family and again prayed and fellowshipped with them when they were back for auditions this August. We were invited to attend SHINE as ministry sponsors again this coming January, but at the moment, it doesn't appear that is the path that God has for us. We adore the staff at AMTC and urge anyone that feels a call to mainstage ministry to look into what they have to offer. We will happily join you in prayer and support!

Kartios

God made it possible for AMTC to meet Karitos shortly after our first time attending SHINE in January. Those doors that God opens NO ONE can shut! As planning took place for Karitos ’12 in Chicago, God had a very special assignment for 1heart Arts…to host the first ever Karitos INDY!
Since our first time attending the Karitos Worship & Arts Conference in 2009, I KNEW that this day would eventually come, that Indianapolis NEEDED Karitos and the amazing ministry that it offered. Our first event was managed with just a few in leadership; covering registration, hospitality and program direction. And we didn't know how many to expect for a first-time event, so we were blessed with our friend offering his business space that could hold about 40 people. Our prayer? Not to pack out the house, but that God would bring the people that HE had called to be there and that the atmosphere of his Holy Spirit would permeate the building, the hallmark of a true Karitos experience. Wow! God sure provided “exceedingly, abundantly above what we could ask or imagine” with our packed house of 45 people. You must read about it all and see the short video of the event above. It was so very powerful!!! And, over 20 people from Indianapolis attended the full Karitos event this past July. So, you can imagine how many KNOW what we know now….how this experience MUST be shared with Indianapolis. Now, comes the planning for Karitos INDY ’13 and we are looking for those that have a heart to join us. We believe that the ministry connections that we have made will play a large part in this next year’s event. We also believe that due to the many people that share our passion for sharing Karitos, that so much more is possible! 

Faith, Hope & Love

Many of you may know that I (Susannah Francis) am the Executive Assistant with the FHL team. For this reason, we have been blessed to have many opportunities to partner with this life-changing ministry of backyard missions. Last December, we joined with them in producing our traveling Christmas production, ministering in Sheridan, Inner-city Indianapolis & Martinsville that ministered to hundreds. 

This year, however, took a slightly different turn in partnership; this time through the ministry of video production. During the annual FHL Week, the 1heart Arts Video team traveled to numerous ministry projects throughout Central Indiana, capturing the event and moving testimonies of the participants/recipients. We then, produced several short reporter-style videos that were featured throughout the week and beyond. It was amazing to see how God ministered to so many and how lives were forever changed through the ministry that was done.

Christian Youth Theater

As we were preparing for last year’s Christmas production, God opened the door for us to have a very wonderful lunch with the CYT Administrator, Lindy Siefker. Through our time together, we felt an instant connection and immediately starting considering partnership possibilities. Though we didn’t have an answer right away as to how we could join efforts, we stayed in contact with Lindy, praying and supporting as we were led. As God began to open the door of opportunity with them again this summer, we found out that CYT was holding their first-ever southside Indy production. What a perfect fit for us to help them since many of our core ministry team is from the southside! In prayer, God led us to help with food for the cast & crew during a day of
performances. They also invited us to put up a 1heart Arts booth to share about ourselves and the other awesome ministries that we support. We were SO very blessed to be a part of that event! My husband Zach echoed so many of my same sentiments as we enjoyed the performance that evening. The cast and crew were top-knotch professionals and, even more amazing, gave God all the glory, both on and off the stage. We know that this too is just the beginning for our relationship with them and cannot wait to see where God will be leading us next!

And so many more...

The ones above are just those that we actually partnered with in some way this year, but the list is ever-growing of ministries and churches where we are continue to grow relationships. He has led us to wonderful friends such as Christ Community Church of Lamong, Inspired Productions,  the team at "Religion in the News", Indy Christian Media and so many others!   God is so abundant in providing us never-ending resources of friendships and ministry partners. You can see this expanding list on our new Ministry Partners & Friends page on our website.  We are always looking for more ways to connect to the Body, so we welcome any suggestions of organizations and people that YOU think we should meet!

Explore Your Passions

posted Oct 27, 2012, 6:50 PM by Susannah Francis

You've discovered your passions, so now comes the fun part, exploring them! We highly suggest attending Karitos Indy '13 in May if you are in the Indianapolis area. It will be a fantastic place to not only delve into your passions, but also grow in them and meet others just like you. However, you don't have to wait until then. There are plenty of great resources right in your backyard where you can explore your passions. Here are just a few!

Attend local drama, music or dance performances

  • There is nothing like a live production to get those creative juices flowing and to put excitement for arts back into your soul.  
  • Make sure to check out the info table and lobby to learn more about the performers and/or organization. You might ignite a new relationship by meeting people that share your same heart for a particular cause or area of art.
  • Peruse the program and see if any other productions catch your eye for the future. Also check out the sponsors and ads for great references to other like-minded art groups.

Take a class

  • Explore information about the hosting organization, such as the the Statement of Beliefs, on their website or printed materials. You may find yourself in a sticky situation if you are asked to participate in something where you do not agree. It is better to know ahead and ask the leaders any questions that you may have.
  • If you don't receive confirmation for your registration, contact the organization to make sure you are registered. Also, make sure you know where you are to park, what you should wear and any other details that would be helpful. 
  • Be open to new ways of doing things. Teachers often have a personal style or method, so don't be surprised if it isn't the same as what you have learned in the past. Still gleam what you can from the instruction and don't allow yourself to be frustrated with the things that are different.

Visit an art gallery or showing

  • Check out the website to see what specialty exhibits and presentations are being offered. Many of these require an additional cost, but sometimes they do not. Being prepared will make sure you have enough money on hand.
  • Give yourself some wiggle room. You would be surprised how long you will want to look at some exhibits, so allow yourself about an hour of extra time so you don't feel rushed to leave.
  • Look up the prices of concessions and/or restaurants. These can sometimes be quite pricey, so make sure to look up the cost ahead of time and plan accordingly. Many places, such as the Indianapolis Art Museum (IMA), offer places where you can enjoy sacked lunches.

Participate in your church

  • Your home church is an excellent place to begin your search in serving through the arts. If you are part of a larger congregation, you probably could start researching by visiting the church website. However, if your church is smaller, it may take a more personalized approach. Contact your worship arts or senior pastor and set up an appointment to share with them what talents and passions you have.  They often don't have the ability to post all opportunities, so letting them know your heart will be key to finding your place to serve.
  • Additionally, you as a creative person, may begin to see places that could use your skills. For example, calligraphy for posters and/or wall plaques, drama sketches during VBS or in the youth team, artwork for the hallways, poetry shared during services, writing for the church website.
  • Be prepared to be open to ideas and suggestions for ways you can serve within your congregation. Doors may come that aren't in your particular "passion" by might be the opening to work there in the future. Pray about each and every opportunity and the Lord will lead you.

Join an artists group

  • You can find a number of artists groups in your area by doing a simple Google search of key words such as "Visual artists Indianapolis" or similar.  There are also Facebook groups that you can search or visit meetup.com.  
  • If a group doesn't have a website, contact the organizer to find out what the flow of a typical meeting is like. You can also ask questions about the leader(s) themselves, which will reveal a great deal about how the group is led.
  • Before agreeing to any kind of contract of membership, visit the group a few times. You don't want to put yourself in an uncomfortable position of backing out if you don't line up on values and methods. And as always, pray before signing.
Visit our page of ministry partner & friends for people we recommend getting to know. On their sites, you will likely find out even more more great opportunities that aren't listed here. We are always here to lend a helping hand in helping you find resources, so contact susannah@1heartarts.org with any questions. Happy exploring!

Some great resources to get you started

  • ATTEND - We hold a monthly artists connection events where you can meet other area artists that are like yourself. The next one will be attending CYT's "Tom Sawyer" on Nov. 17th. We will meet for dinner and then sit together at the show.
  • PERFORM - Our friends Two for the Show host an open mic night each 1st Friday from 6-8 pm in Martinsville . All types of performers and skill levels welcome! Contact Jim Harris at jwharrisjr@prodigy.net.
  • DANCE - Our friends at Sacred Dance Institute are offering Masterclasses to all levels of dancers for only $20 on Dec. 2nd from 3-6 pm. Classes for both youth and adults available. 
  • VISIT - Both the Art Bank in Indy and the Indiana Art Sanctuary offer open gallery nights each month. These typically feature not only great visual artists, but many musical and literary guests as well. Check out our friends the Howies at the next Art Bank on Nov. 
  • SING - Our friend Evelyn Johnson at Indy Voice Studio is a great place to check out if you want to get back into singing. She works with all ages, musical genres, skill levels and voice types. Evelyn holds a Masters in voice from IU and offers very reasonable rates. 
  • JOIN - Writers of all genres are welcome to join a great group that we attend. The Morgan County Writers Group offers participants the opportunity an encouraging atmosphere to share your work for critique and receive great resources for submitting your work. Meets the first Friday of each month in Mooresville. Contact Barbara Manning at barbandgary1986@live.com for more details.

Invest in Your Passions

posted Oct 27, 2012, 6:50 PM by Susannah Francis

So, you have discovered what you are passionate about and started to explore those areas. Now what?  Pray. We recommend earnest prayer for God to lead you to the next step of your journey. 

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. ~ Matt. 7:7-8

These may be some options to consider:  
  1. Take Lessons
    One thing that we heard repeatedly in workshops is to continue to grow as an artists. At the AMTC SHINE events we have attended, it was stressed by numerous professionals that you must always continue to grow as an artist and they recommend to stay in lessons.  We are blessed to know a number of wonderful arts teachers in the Indianapolis area and would be happy to share the contact details with you.

  2. Attend Conferences & Conventions
    There are some really amazing arts conferences out there, but we can't help but mention our favorite, Karitos in Chicago.  It offers an amazing weekend of workshops, worship & connecting with other artists. The cost is minimal as far as conferences go, under $100 for adults and those that attend tend to be forever changed in their ministry. If you don't want to make the trek to Chicago, try out the mini version of the conference right here in Indy - Karitos Indy.

  3. Contact a Talent Development Agency
    If you believe you are called to work in the arts professionally, going the next step and contacting an arts development agency may be something to consider. Actors Models & Talent for Christ (AMTC) is a great resource for those that wish to serve the Kingdom through the performing arts. They hold auditions in the Indianapolis area two times a year or you may submit a video online.
We at 1heart Arts are here to pray with you and assist in any way that we can! If you have questions about any of these resources, please feel free to contact us at susannah@1heartarts.org.  We also would LOVE to hear how God is moving your passions, so please share with us. Have a wonderful journey!

Discover Your Passions

posted Oct 24, 2012, 7:04 PM by Susannah Francis   [ updated Oct 24, 2012, 7:05 PM ]

Artists tend to be...well...umm...quite honestly, they tend to be flighty  This can be an asset at times, but sometimes also often causes us to miss out on really great tools out there that can improve us as Christian artists.  To make the load a little lighter on you, we have spent some time searching for resources that would walk you through this process.   Below are simple 1-2-3 steps to assist in discovering, exploring and investing in your passions.

Several years ago, Zach and I (Susannah) participated in a spiritual gift discovery course at our church.  It was a several week-long process that was accompanied by a workbook and group discussions. While I would never want to dissuade you from enrolling into a similar course, there are other options online that will help you in this process.  North Point Systems, Inc. offers a great online tool that packages the entire S.H.A.P.E. program into a simple test format. Used by permission from them, we encourage you to take this five-part assessment to discover your S.H.A.P.E. in the Body of Christ. It is also available for purchase for churches and ministries to share with their members and house a database of information that will allow you to better know your people. For more details about this system, contact them at (412) 532-6456. 
"S.H.A.P.E. allows for individuals to register online and take 5 online assessments covering areas of spiritual gifts, heart passions, abilities & skills, personality, and experience." 

The S.H.A.P.E. assessment is divided into five areas:

Spiritual Gifts
Heart Passions
Abilities & Skills
Personality
Experience

You will need to input your contact information to register for taking this assessment.


Then.... Explore Your Passions

Artists Connection Events: What Are They?

posted Sep 25, 2012, 11:56 AM by Susannah Francis   [ updated Sep 25, 2012, 12:23 PM ]

One thing that we are hearing over and over again is that you, our artist friends, want to meet others that are like you.  For a while now, 1heart Arts has been hosting a variety of artists events throughout the year - cookouts, parties and such. And now, we are feeling the prompting to begin offering a monthly opportunity (or more) for artists to do something together. We have a whole list of ideas and offer for you to share your input.  

These events are all about connecting with like-minded artists of the community. When you come to your favorite kind of event, you will likely find other artists that share your interests and passions. What you will find at every event: 
  • family friendly, 
  • attended by 1heart Arts leadership 
  • another great arts ministry to learn about
If you know of something that you think we should consider as an Artist Connection Event, please contact Susannah@1heararts.org. We hope to see you soon!

Upcoming Artists Connection Events

OCT 12 - Painting  (Pottery Painting @ You are the Potter in Greenwood)
TBD - Poetry Reading
TBD - Karaoke Night
TBD - Movie Night
TBD - Christmas Cookie Baking Party
TBD - Christmas Caroling


Entering a New Season

posted Sep 25, 2012, 10:39 AM by Susannah Francis

As we look back from our humble beginning from a church stage in 2006, we can't even begin to comprehend how God has taken us to the place where we are today.  I remember hearing in a Casting Crowns concert once that God loves when we are small because it allows Him to be so Big. I pray that God is seen BIG in your eyes when you hear our story. We invite you to click on that link and read how He took a humble heart to write plays and a submissive heart to worship through song, and He fashioned them together to create what you see today as 1heart Arts Ministries. It is truly overwhelming how He has moved us all along within this ministry and continues to draw others to this well of love, acceptance, peace and opportunity that is available to artists!


So, what is next? Well, it's something we've been sensing for a while now, but we are starting to see come into clearer vision.  It all began back in 2009, when the focus became solely on Christ and what He had for us to do. We quickly saw in our next production that, though the drama performances were powerful, it was the cast and crew that were our true object of ministry.  God started drawing actors and singers to us as they participated in our productions and we started learning the needs of the artists community as we never had before.  We saw loneliness, frustration with acceptance from the church and misunderstood people.  It saddened us as we recognized these broken and wounded hearts. However, we also were seeing amazing and powerful warriors for God, people that had passion for serving Him, people that are extremely talented. How could we possible help them see that side of themselves?  Well...we were first had to see it inside ourselves!  And it was a journey, let me tell you! And there in that journey, God opened our eyes to our true calling...to "connect, encourage and equip" His artists.  So, we continued step-by-step, asking Him to lead the way.  

Now we are seeing that vision sharpen as we minister and get to know even more artists one-on-one.  Many of you that are reading this may remember the phone calls of encouragement during a difficult time, a meeting at Starbucks where we prayed together and told you that "God has something wonderful on the horizon" or even those texts and Facebook messages just saying a simple "hi" and "how's it going?".  We've been to weddings, funerals, drama performances, dance events, birthday parties, fundraisers and out-of-town events all in the name of Christ and what He has called us to do.  We love these artists as if they are our own family and pray daily for their needs and desires to serve Him.  We've seen some walk away from the church and we've welcomed others home. We understand more every day what Paul means when he said, ''Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn." (Romans 12:15)  This journey has been such a powerful force that God has used in our own lives to draw us closer and closer into His presence...and through that, we invite others to join us in that awesome place, at His feet.

We seek to lift up those artists that God leads to us and show Him exactly what God has shown us, that they are His Children and He has created them for a very special and unique purpose.  Now, we are praying for more to join us in this adventure...those that feel that common purpose and drive to minister to artists. Is that you?  If it is, pray about what God might have for you to do alongside us.  We desperately need more prayer warriors as we go deeper into the battlefield.  Additionally, we seek people that want to help in networking events and fun artist gatherings. Or God might be telling you something else that you can do. We all can work together as the Body in serving God's creative people and ultimately drawing them into a closer relationship with Him!

Contact Susannah@1heartarts.org if you feel God tugging on your heart to discuss this further!

Looking Back at Karitos ‘12

posted Aug 27, 2012, 3:50 PM by Susannah Francis   [ updated Aug 27, 2012, 10:47 PM ]

Praise God from whom ALL blessings flow! 

PHOTOS BY GIO DIAZ

Much of what happened at the Karitos Worship & Arts Conference this past July can only be shared in generalities because God was doing so much personal work in people's hearts. However, I can tell you that  the weekend was absolutely amazing....the people that we traveled up with had some really powerful moments with Christ and we saw some MAJOR walls fall in their lives and we cannot praising God for what He did that weekend!!!

We took four others with us (two of them leadership in our ministry) up to Chicago for this event and then met six others that traveled separately. Due to the Indy event that we led back in May, there were about 20 some Indy attendees in all. To show even how more amazing our God is, two of the people that joined us for the conference were people we met through our film project research (Zach and I are collaborating with a film producer in Charleston [Karen DeLoach] on a project on the topic of cutting, suicide and the drug culture). The other person is Tracy Lewis, who we met through reading her book "God is Always There" about cutting and her struggles with self-harming. She is now a speaker & author about the topic and has been called to it as her ministry. It was wonderful to finally meet Tracy and her daughter Caitlin in person after our many conversations through phone and email. 

The main worship sessions were absolutely amazing! The worship was beautiful as always and the performances were wonderful. For the first time in 17 years, Karitos had one keynote speaker for all three evenings and it proved to be a very wise decision. Matt Tommey, speaker and author of the powerful book "Unlocking the Heart of the Artist", spoke each night about the lies that the enemy tells us and walked us through how we could break free through by understanding the truth of how God sees us. The first evening ended with Matt asking the entire audience to close our eyes and hear something that the enemy has told us about ourselves. Then he said for us to keep our eyes closed and hear what God says is the truth, what He sees in us.   Matt asked four to five people to come up and share both the lie and the truth that God showed them about that lie.  

The next night, Matt began his message by sharing that several people had revelations following the previous night's conference and he invited a few more people to come onstage and share what God may have told them about the lies they have believing about themselves.  So, a few came and when it got down to only one or two on stage, four more would come...and so it went for over an hour, four or five more arriving.  It started much the same as the night before, "God tells me I am precious in His eyes", "My art is worship to Him" and similar. However, then it took a much deeper level as teens started arriving on stage making the statements of "the enemy told me I am ugly and nobody likes me, but God says I am perfectly and wonderfully made and He loves me" .  You could see the freedom on their faces as they stepped off stage and were met with arms outstretched by one of the ministry leaders.  Here is were something amazing happened. A teen stepped on stage in tears and said something similar to this, "I believed that so many of my friends killed themselves was because I was a bad friend and I deserved to die, but God says that I am actually there to help these friends that are wanting to kill themselves".  Then, it seemed as if teens began flocking to the stage, all with very similar phrases and fears.  Matt prayed over them and declared healing from those lies. Then, one of the most powerful things for me was seeing that very same teen that started the flock, standing in the aisle, praying for those youth that came off stage. It was as if the ministry of praying for suicidal teens was birthed in a moment for that person!  We saw so many chains broken that evening!!!  

The workshops were phenomenal as well. The two of the most helpful tracks to our ministry work were Theatre and Film.  You can see workshop descriptions here). The theatre workshops were especially helpful to myself (Susannah) and Janet Jones, as we found some really amazing resources like prop inventory, sound cue and wardrobe run sheets. I hope to be able to share these online soon if we receive approval from our ministry friend that created them. Zachary and Stanley Jones were able to attend some really great film workshops as well. One that was the highlight of the weekend was entitled "Developing Your Story as a Feature Film" by CJ Powers, a writer, director, producer and a script doctor for film and television (see bio here).   I hope to be able to post notes from these workshops online as well. Be watching for a much more involved Resource Page soon! 

All in all, our weekend was incredible and so many lives were changed forever.  God is constantly stretching and growing us to prepare us for the ministry work He has for us. I always love the Parable of the Talents because it shows how our God moves us into greater and great things as we grow in Him.  

We are prayerfully considering to host another Karitos Indy during May 2013. If you would like to be a part of the planning committee, please contact Susannah@1heartarts.org.  We also will be taking a group with us to Karitos '13 in Chicago next July, so feel free to contact us if you want to attend!

Enjoy a fun video from our trip home from Chicago. Abigail Farmen is a very talented visual artist and percussionist and also makes costume suits.

Bonk Goes to Burger King


A Recap of AMTC Summer SHINE ‘12

posted Aug 22, 2012, 1:54 PM by Susannah Francis   [ updated Aug 27, 2012, 8:09 PM ]


The first week of July we traveled again to Orlando to support gals that were participating in the AMTC SHINE event. As God is One that provide "exceedingly, abundantly", we also were blessed to share 1heart Arts with the 1,500 some attendees of the event by also being a sponsor and having a ministry booth displayed. God did so many AMAZING things through our time there - we prayed with dozens of participants, connected with global ministry leaders, and even more exciting was that both gals that we traveled down with to support had major spiritual breakthroughs and encounters with Christ. There were so many neat days down there. Two of my favorites, were the day that God filled both Zach and I with a deep desire to pray for the leadership involved with AMTC. He opened so many doors for us to pray so everywhere we went, there was another person that God had for us to pray over. It was an exhilarating experience! 

The other day was the day of the showcase finale. Our ministry friend Wynter (see more about her and her story here), was to dance in the finale and woke up not even being able to walk. There was prayer over her again and again throughout the day. Right before she went down to meet for the lineup, a group of us gathered over her and poured over more and more prayer. Though her spirit was healed, her leg still was in great pain (though she now could hobble a bit). God did a miraculous healing that very evening right before she went on stage. A group of various performers circled together and prayed together…Wynter said it was amazing! When she came on stage, she went right up on her toes and danced her heart out. The Spirit worked through her that night, both offstage and onstage. 

This time we didn't have the opportunity to attend as many of the seminars, but we did catch a few. One of the most useful was on the last day of the event, entitled "Where Do I Go From Here?'. It was a fantastic overview of all the many resources for finding work and/or volunteer opportunities in the arts, including online and our local communities.  We hope to have those notes to share soon. Until then, please feel free to check all of our seminar notes from Winter SHINE (below) or any of our other AMTC resources

God was so very good to us and we are thanking Him still for all these many blessings!

AMTC Winter SHINE 12 Seminar notes:


Why Are We Going Down to Orlando?

posted Jun 7, 2012, 12:24 PM by Susannah Francis   [ updated Jun 18, 2012, 9:55 PM by Susannah Francis ]

You may be wondering why we are going down to Orlando for yet another AMTC SHINE event so soon.  Well, let us tell you! When we first met AMTC in Indianapolis last October, we immediately knew that we were supposed to attend the SHINE event in January. At the time, we didn't have admission to the event, a place to stay or funds to get there…however we knew that we were supposed to be there.  It was a matter that we asked our prayer warriors to join with us in prayer on while we focused on the Christmas production.  As many of you may remember, God answered those prayers in amazing ways. 
In January, we traveled down to SHINE and were so very blessed. You may remember that article  that was posted shortly after we returned – see here.  God then gave us yet ANOTHER opportunity to see Him in action through AMTC this past March.  Through that experience, He awakened a bit more of our calling in ministry to artists – see more about that here.  Additionally, in March, we were blessed to be a part of seeing our own few ministry friends audition for an upcoming AMTC SHINE event.  Now, two of them are part of the program and are preparing to be a part of Summer SHINE during the first week of July. God even allowed us to see them in the dress rehearsal a few weeks ago!

Now, here is where I need to back up a bit.  You see, one of the things that we felt very strongly from day one of meeting AMTC was that if one of our 1heart Arts friends was to go down to SHINE, we were to go with them in support.  We had NO idea that it would be the very next SHINE event!  We also had NO idea that it wouldn’t just be one, but instead TWO!  So who are these very talented folks that are making their way down to Orlando to share their God-given talents? I’m so glad you asked!

The first is the person we are actually traveling with down to SHINE, Wynter Zabrina Veal-Drummond.  We met Wynter Zabrina’s mother last year and it was an immediate connection.  Janet Veal-Drummond was part of the Christians in Theatre Arts (CITA) Facebook page and she saw a post I had made on another ministry friend’s status.  That was all it took for us each to gain curiosity in each other. You see, she was one of those artists was looking for God to open a door for her to do ministry.  It just so happened that we did arts ministry, so it seemed like a pretty good match! 
She graduated from University of Indianapolis with a Theatre degree and had a passion to share the talent with the Christian community.  During that initial meeting (a long one I might add), we asked the Lord to bring her all that her heart desired, including to serve Him in theatre ministry.  We continued looked for ways to plug her into the ministry work we were doing AND we invited her to Karitos.  Both she and Wynter attended Karitos last year with us…and Wynter even got to dance in one of the evening’s processionals.  After attending Karitos, we continued to stay friends with Janet and Wynter…and of course pray for that open door. 

At the same time, we were praying for God to show us if there were ministry friends that we should help in guiding to AMTC. Who would have known that our prayers would lead us to that same open door!  In March, we were blessed with the opportunity to pray with the AMTC staff over the audition room.  Before starting our prayers, I was seeking the Lord to tell me what I should be praying for and I sensed Him saying, “Pray that people make it to the auditions, to ask for protection from for car problems, people’s discouraging words.” Then, I asked God if there were specific people that I should be praying for…and He answered loudly in my spirit, “yes!”.  

One of those people was Wynter. 

Though I was happy to be praying over the space, I couldn’t get out to the car quickly enough to message her and tell her that God wanted her there. Now how do I do that?! I didn’t even have to ask that twice because when I pulled up Facebook on my phone her post was the second one down…saying that she didn't think she was going to go to the auditions.  I quickly replied to the post and told her (pretty bluntly in fact) that God told me that I was supposed to encourage her to be there.  God pierced her heart and she was there the following morning. I can’t even BEGIN to tell you how amazing of a day that was for us…God showed up in all His glory.  We also saw the brightest part of the whole situation…this girl was MADE to dance for Him!  Her audition blew us away…yes, it was technically very good…but that wasn’t it. It was POWERFUL…it radiated the Holy Spirit and communicated God’s love. Wow…how blessed are we?  I’ll let the video above tell the rest of the story about her journey so far. 

So, that is Wynter Zabrina. Do you want to support this bright young star for God? It would help her shine that much brighter down in Orlando in front of the Kings of Hollywood and Broadway.  Please pray for her…follow her journey with us. It is so very exciting to be even a small part of this Kingdom work.  We hope to be blogging all the way through the experience so you can join us all the blessings!

If you feel in your heart that God is asking you to financially support Wynter, please feel free to share your gift through our fundraising page for July. Please mark it as “for Wynter Zabrina”. 

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Thank you and thank you again. God has so many joys in store for us! If you would like to follow my (Susannah) own personal journey to Summer SHINE, please feel free to visit my blog at Summer SHINE 2012 Blog.

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