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The infancy narrative in the Gospel of John is distinctly different than those found in the Synoptic Gospels. His account of the birth of Jesus is not in the narrative style of Mark, Matthew and the Lucan account. In his rendering of the incarnation John writes: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God."
Students from the BTC Scholars Programme at The College of The Bahamas joined in to give back at the Bahamas Telecommunications Company's (BTC) second annual School Aid event at Mario's Bowling and Family Entertainment Palace. The 10 students, who received academic scholarships from the telecommunications company, teamed up with BTC iVolunteers, community leaders, educational speakers and health and grooming professionals, to prepare 400 students from the Department of Social Services, Urban Renewal, Families of All Murder Victims (FOAM), and BTC's adopted Old Bight Mission Home for the new school year.
The COB scholars served as chaperones and mentors to the young students during the School Aid event. Boys received haircuts at the grooming station while girls got manicures. Dental and health screenings were also offered. Each child was able to select a book of his or her choice to take home from the bookstore, and every child left the event with a BTC backpack filled with school supplies and a $35 grocery voucher.
The children and parents were not the only ones to receive gifts. BTC also awarded each of the scholars with a $250 gift certificate to defray the costs of books and supplies.
BTC scholar Kenique Pinder, a senior in COB's psychology program, said she was excited when BTC approached her about participating in the BTC School Aid event. She said working with children is her calling.
"My passion is kids. Ever since my BTC scholarship allowed me to remain at COB, I have been pursuing a career in child psychology, so I have had a blast working with the children here today."
Fellow BTC scholar Adrian Culmer, a third-year student in COB's computer and application programming program, said that he also enjoys working with children, but his main motivation to give back is thankfulness for what he has been given.
"BTC gave so much to me. Having this BTC scholarship has empowered me to be able to focus on my education rather than worry about tuition, so I definitely want to pass that on and give back to these kids," he said.
During the event Culmer also told the children that good grades do not come easily. He encouraged them to be persistent and work toward getting those grades.
"Have discipline, keep focused and always put God first; those are my keys to success," said the BTC scholar.
Pinder, Culmer and eight other students were selected in 2013 to receive scholarships via the BTC Scholars Programme. The $250,000 program was established to provide higher education for academically qualified, but financially challenged, COB students who have graduated from public high schools in New Providence, Grand Bahama or any of the Family Islands.
Indira Collie, manager of internal communication at BTC and lead organizer of the School Aid event, said that she was happy that the BTC Scholars shared their sponsor's generosity and appreciation for the importance of education, but was not surprised.
"At BTC we recognize that education is key. We are more than happy to invest in the development of these school-age youngsters at BTC School Aid, just as we were happy to invest in the futures of our BTC scholars a year ago. The fact that our scholars recognize the value of education and have multiplied what we have given to them by giving again to these children today is a testament to the caliber of students COB chose for our program and the crucial role that corporate citizens like BTC can play in uplifting a community," said Collie.
It wasn't a large turnout, but the five members of Ebenezer Mission Baptist Church's youth group that made an appearance at the church's weekly Tuesday youth meeting took home a powerful message -- to let their dreams fuel their passion and their passion help them to fulfill their dreams.
Former Bahamas National Youth Board member Beaumont Todd told them that they should realize that they are unique, and that the dream God has given them to fulfill is their purpose and destiny while on earth, even though obstacles may come their way. He also told them that they will come across people who will not believe in their dream, but that they should trust God and through their gift and dream He will lead them to fulfill their purpose.
In a test, he asked the teenagers whether either of them knew how many hairs was on their body, from their head to the feet -- and one actually started counting -- but came to the realization that he would not be able to complete his task. Todd told them that while they didn't God knew, and that the Bible says He does, including knowing when they slept and when they were awake. He told them that God knows what goes on even in the secret places of their heart. And that God knows what He put there. And that the dream they have inside their life and their heart is uniquely special to them.
"Don't ever let anyone else tell you that you're not special, that you're not unique," he said to the teens. "No one can do what you can do in this world like you -- that's why you're here."
He told them that people would try to beat them down, may try to discourage them and even try to find reasons to break them down by telling them that they are nothing, but that they have to believe in God's purpose for their lives.
Todd reminded them of the story of Joseph in the Bible.
"Basically Joseph's brothers threw him in a pit, sold him to slavery, basically to say he was so worthless he might as well just be a slave and they didn't want him anywhere close to them or around them. They felt he was no value to them. They did not understand the unique gift and dream that God had put inside Joseph's heart," Todd told the teens.
He reminded them that when Joseph got into Egypt, he was sold from the slave traders that had actually picked him up from his brothers to another person -- Potiphar, and that in Potiphar's house, Joseph went from being a simple slave to head of the house because his owner grew to trust him because he was such a good worker. He told the teenagers that Joseph had also been good looking, and caught the eye of Potiphar's wife who found him quite attractive. And that when the master was away the "kitty cat" tried to play.
"She was like how some of our women are today, very aggressive and didn't wait for Joseph to hit on her, she hit on him. Joseph could have made the mistake and said I have this attractive young woman hitting on me trying to get me into her bed, I can just give in and do it. But he sat, he considered what all he would actually lose -- his master's trust, his self-respect and more importantly he would lose the fact that he knew God had him for a special person. He said no once to the young lady, she let it go she came back again. He said no twice, she let it go. The third time he rejected her, she set up a lie. She got Joseph into her room, but when he saw what she was doing he ran away. She snatched his coat and when the master came home she set up a beautiful lie to say that Joseph was trying to get into his bed. The master ended up locking Joseph up in jail although he did the right thing."
Told reminded the teenagers that while Joseph was incarcerated he held out to the dream that God put in his heart and the principles God gave him to live by and the fact that he believed in the uniqueness that God had given him.
"Joseph rose to the point where the guards and the persons in charge actually trusted him with the other prisoners. When they had problems they would send the prisoners to Joseph for him to help solve them," he said.
Todd said that while Joseph was in jail, the king had become displeased with his baker and cup bearer and that they too were thrown into jail. And that while in jail they both had a dream, went to Joseph and asked if he could help them. He said Joseph translated their dreams -- because Joseph's unique gift from God was that he could tell you what a dream meant.
Because of their uniquness, Todd told the youngsters that every morning they should thank God for the new day that they awaken to, and for the fact that He made them special to His purpose.
"We are all here to do a job -- to live, to enjoy life, to love, to experience, to grow, to fail and to progress," he said. "There will be times in the pursuit of doing what is right and what is good that nobody may believe in you, and nobody may believe in your dream, but regardless, God always watches over you and will never leave you," he told them.
Todd encouraged the teenagers to write down on a piece of paper a quality they each liked about themselves. The responses he got varied from smart to good hearted, softhearted and determined. One of the papers he received was blank, as the teenager could not think of a quality, that Todd said bothered him. In turn he told the youth group meeting that one of the things he liked about himself is that he is a little quirky and that he sometimes has a strange sense of humor.
Like Joseph pursued his dreams, he encouraged them to ensure that they followed theirs.
"Regardless of how persons say the children are lost or have no direction, I believe our children are our greatest help and hope for the future," he said. "And if the children took away nothing else, they should remember the story from Genesis about how Joseph's dream helped to give his life direction and purpose. And that even though he faced difficulties, his trust in God and his gifts are what brought him before great men and helped him fulfill God's purpose.
Mount Moriah's Stapledon Park came alive on Saturday as PLP area candidate Arnold Forbes hosted a Christmas event for residents over the weekend.
Hundreds poured onto the grounds from surrounding communities and descended on McKinney Avenue for the holiday event.
PLP Deputy Leader Philip Brave Davis, also joined the huge event, where gifts, food, music and entertainment by marching bands all filled the grounds.
Davis and Forbes also made presentations on behalf of the party to civic groups, as they shared the spirit of gift giving with the children present.
NASSAU, Bahamas -- More than 2,000 young people attending the Royal Bahamas Police Force (RBPF) Summer Youth Camps will dine on the generosity of Bank of The Bahamas. The donation -- gifts cards for a summer's lunches and snacks from Phil's Food Services -- was made during a presentation today at BOB's head office with representatives of all nine summer youth camps throughout New Providence.
"We're extremely grateful to have the support of Bank of The Bahamas, especially since the program has been extended from four weeks to six weeks this year," said camp coordinator Inspector Chrislyn Skippings. "Our goal this year is to provide positive activities in keeping with our POLICE 2012 policing plan and the bank's donation will help sustain the programs we're currently implementing for the children."
This is the third year BOB has supported the summer youth camps that help students gain respect for themselves and others through well-structured activities which demonstrate the rewards of hard work and dedication. This year's sessions in neighbourhoods throughout New Providence kicked off on July 2 with a march to Police Headquarters where more than 2,000 participants were divided into their various camps, based primarily on the police division in which they live. Each camp location averages 220 participants and operates 9am to 2pm on weekdays. Some 320 youngsters are enrolled in Central Division.
- Stat Oil Company provided lunch and gifts for three Grand Bahama
Island schools this week. Students from McLeans Town, High Rock and
Freetown enjoyed lunch and each received a present...
NASSAU, Bahamas — Lyford Cay Foundation, Inc. has made a $25,000 donation to The Salvation Army of The Bahamas to support its three feeding centres, which have experienced a sharp rise in the number of people seeking assistance during these tough economic times.
Freeport, Bahamas - While cruising through
The Bahamas on their senior class trip, the students of Laurens Central
School in Laurens, New York took time to visit the Grand Bahama
Children's Home with suitcases full of gifts for the children.
planning our senior class trip, our students wanted to include a
community project," said School Superintendent Romona Wenck. "I spoke
with Karen Seymour, at the Ministry of Tourism, to get some ideas and
she immediately suggested the Grand Bahama Children's Home. The students
loved the idea because they would actually get to interact with the