Monday, March 27, 2006

RAVEN RESCUE: Extreme Church Build

RAVEN Ministries has long worked in both the spiritual and practical side of ministry since its earliest stages. From operating the Jesus Cafe' where we provided hot, sit-down meals for approximately 250 homeless men, women and children to our annual Thanksgiving Outreach and Food Distribution that saw 1200 a year take home all the things necessary to provide a full-blown holiday meal for their family to Hurricane Relief and Raven Street Church.

Jesus said in the be-attitudes that "Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy." Mercy is just not some idea, or philosophical expression---mercy is REAL-LIFE! Mercy is not a "pat on the back" and a "you're okay and I'm okay" thing that comes without effort or for that matter, a price!

To the hungry, mercy is something to eat. To the homeless, mercy is a place to sleep. To those held captive by sin, mercy is deliverance. Mercy is us being His hands and feet.

Last year we joined with Streetwise Ministry ( to reach into Tijuana, Mexico. We helped enlarge a church there and assist the pastor in ministry to the community. Our work and support there will continue.

This year, in addition to Tijuana, Mexico on the west side of the nation-- we will be adding a ministry project/opportunity to Juarez, Mexico- just across the Texas border from El Paso.

I spoke with Pastor David Roberson, the director of Casas por Cristo ( this past weekend about the tremendous need and awesome opportunities to take the MERCY and MESSAGE of the Lord Jesus Christ into this deserate place.

Our goal is to build an ENTIRE CHURCH in Juarez, Mexico in the early fall of this year. We will need to raise approximately $10,000 to finance the construction and associated costs of this project. We will be drawing from a skilled labor force of ministry volunteers in Texas, New Mexico and other surrounding areas to turn-key and dedicate this project to a local pastor in about FOUR DAYS of construction!

We obviously need YOUR help. Raven Ministries International has already set up to send monthly support to the ongoing ministry of Casas por Cristos in addition to the church build project. We believe in what they and Pastor David are doing there and their heart to reach people for the Lord Jesus Christ.

I told Pastor David that I would immediately began raising the necessary finances to build the church and would get with him on a specific date when 1/2 ($5,000) had been raised. I'm am believing God that ALL the needed funds will be recieved by June and that we can schedule the build for sometime in October.

I have already been on the telephone with an electrician, and a couple of framers who have committed to come assist in the project (many of you know that I operated a drywall business for several years early on in my ministry--and you'll see me there hanging sheetrock too!).

LET's GET MOVING on this soon and nail down a date for the build so those wanting to join us can make plans (and hopefully that will include YOU too!). What would be TOTALLY AWESOME would be if we could not only raise the funds to build the CHURCH, but also an additional $5,600 to build a house to go along with it!

Here's what needs to be done:

1. PRAY. When things start in prayer, they end in victory! Pray for people to give. Pray for help on the build. Pray against the attempts of the enemy to derail this work.

2. GIVE. "Faith without works is dead." Put some substance (money) to your support. Melanie and I are personally giving the first $100 towards the project TODAY---so the need has already went down to just $9,900 in just a few minutes. I am believing that we are going to see a rapid multiplication in a short amount of time! UPDATE 3/27 ***We had a pledge come in for $1000 earlier this evening! Praise the Lord we now only need $8,900 to do the church build!

3. HELP. Maybe our annual "Mardi Gras Outreach" seems too much for you. How about coming and getting your hands dirty for Jesus? We will be doing the construction project AND setting up to prepare FREE hot meals for the community and doing daily and evening ministry there to the locals as well. There is a place just right for you!

You can give your financial support one of two ways:

Go to our ministry website at and click on the "Make A Donation" button and give your donation through PayPal (credit card, electronic check, etc.) or you can send your check to:

Raven Ministries - Mexico Build

P.O. Box 113196

Metairie, LA 70011

If you want to make a pledge to be sent at a later date, email us and let us know the amount and when you can have it completed. You can then send it in as you can until the pledge is completed. Just email us and let us know if this would be they best for you!

It is going to be AWESOME to see what the Lord Jesus is going to do there in Mexico and in YOUR life as well.


Pastor Troy D. Bohn

"When you SEE IT like Jesus saw will DO IT like Jesus did it!"

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Please Pray For These Young Men

Sometimes the conversation on the street goes much deeper and involves a great more than what some would consider basic-evangelism. Because I have spent 90% of my ministry as a "pastor", I tend to evangelize from a pastoral perspective. This has served me well in two ways:
First, it has provided me the the persepective necessary for the "Church" to incorporate a soul-winning mentality into the the everyday life of the Body. Since, I planted and built churches I know that their must (and is) a practical way for church leaders to equip and release their body into "the work of the ministry" in their own neighborhoods and communities--as well as getting involved im mission work (both a home and abroad).
This pastoral experience and "flavor" has also enabled me to visit and minister in many churches and many different denominations--because I know the challenges that pastors have in regards to both the equipping and releasing of the saints of God in evangelistic endeavors.

Secondly, my experience (calling, gifting, or whatever one would term it), has allowed me to move beyond the sometimes superficial "get em saved and get em outta the way" mentality that has often stereotyped evanhelism and evangelistic minitries. I see people not just from the "fishermans" vantage point, but also from that of the "shepherd" as well.

Having said that, I thought I would "introduce" you to two young men that I had the chance to minister to at length the other night. I'll call them "Tom" and "Bill" in this forum.

While these two young men may at first glance seem very different, when one looks beyond the surface elements of race and culture--you'll find two young men who are very much alike.

"Tom" the African-American young man was standing in front of a local club on Bourbon St the other evening when I approached him. I asked him, "Hey, what are you waiting for?" He looked somewhat puzzed and said, "What do you mean?" I replied, "Well, I have seen you standing in that same place the past 15 minutes and I thought you might be waiting for the same thing that I am." To which he relied, "What's that?"

I said, "Man, I am waiting for Jesus to come back!"

I then had the blessed opprotunity to talk and minister to this young man for the next 30-40 minutes there on the sidewalk. I found out that he was 22 years old and was a "Katrina Survivor." He and his family actually had to make (5) moves before they could find high enough ground to escape the floodwaters. He grew up in a local housing project but now had the opportunity to get out.

We spoke and he shared his dreams and desires about attending a Junior College in Southern California this coming fall and having the opportunity to realize another dream: to play college basketball. I prayed with him and he acknowledge his need to get back to where he needed to be with Jesus--then I asked him if we could take our picture together.

I told him as I showed him the picture above on the small screen of my digital camera, "One day, you and I are going to be standing center court in either a basketball arena, a stadium, or a church full of struggling inner-city kids and I am going to have the picture falshed on the Jumbo-Tron and tell those kids that "Tom" is proof positive that Jesus is still in the life changing business and you are going to share the testimoy of how Jesus met you right where you were on Bourbon Street one night and then you are going to share the same Gospel with them!

His face lit up and he began to see it in his own heart. Pray for him, that he will see the fulfillment of the destiny that God has for this young man.

The other young man, "Bill" was just (4) days from his second deployment to the Middle East. At first he was speaking with another of our team and they called me over to "hand off" this hard case to! (Thanks)

In fact though, he wasn't really hard, he was just working to keep the last bit of sanity and courage that he could--knowing that in just a few days he would be back in harm's way and away from the friends and family that he had enjoyed spending time with during this leave.

He too was a young man in his early 20's. You could see the grit and determination in his eyes that is often evident in those shapen for battle by the US Military. (A trait that should be in the eyes of those shapen by the Word of God and the passion of the Holy Spirit as well).

As we spoke, he at first sought to justify his evenings behavior (drinking, fornication, etc) but you could see that he was just grasping at straws. Even as the girl he was with tugged at his arm and gave us both dirty looks--he just couldn't find it in himself to walk away.

He offered excuse after excuse and justification after justification for his actions. He said to me, "I have gone to church much of my life and what you are telling me is so different than what other pastors have said. Are you saying they were all LYING to me?"

I told him, "I don't know what they told you. I don't know if you heard them right. All I know is what the Word of God says and that is the standard by which all of us must one day stand before Jesus on."

He said, "Man your tough! You need to be debating Bill O'Reily of something." I told him, "No, I am not tough, I just love you enough not to want to see you go back to a place where you could possibly die--without first having the opportunity to hear the truth of God's Word."

With that he allowed me to pray for him and then walked over to my brother who had previously been talking with him and shook his hand and allowed him to pray for him too."

Please keep both of these young men in your prayers. The enemy desires to steal, kill and destroy their lives in different (but the same) way--but Jesus came that they might have life andlife more abundantly!

“But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd. Then He said to his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the laborers are few; Pray that the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth laborers into his harvest.” Matt 9:36-38

Urgency produces the activity that creates an expectancy to see the manifestation of God’s opportunity!

Every time that I read or recite this passage from Matthew 9, there is a greater understanding of the urgency that Christ Jesus must have felt at that moment.

Maybe it is the fact that I have seen the estimated 15,000-20,000 men, women and children that live in Los Angeles’ “Skid Row” area.

Maybe it is because I have walked the housing projects and looked into the desperate eyes of those that live in America’s Murder Capitol– New Orleans.

Maybe it is because I have seen the penetrating power of the Word of God find its mark on repentant hearts from Bourbon Street to the militant Gay Pride Parades of West Hollywood to the lonely souls that wander this nations cities.

The Word says that “Jesus was moved” - that is something hit Him right in the gut! That “something” was such, that it caused an immediate urgency to come upon Him.

What was that “something” that He saw?

They fainted, they were scattered abroad, and they had no shepherd.
This “fainted” can literally be translated– to be mangled! I have seen this before. People destroyed by the vicious claws of sin and hopelessness.

To be “scattered abroad” means to be slammed into the ground! When someone’s life has been slammed into the ground there is the chilling thud of a soul hitting rock bottom! This is a place of death, depression and despair.

Then Jesus said that they were like sheep “having no shepherd.”
In other words, they had no one to watch over them, to defend them from attack, to heal their wounds, to find them when they were lost or trapped, to love them and to earn their trust.

This is what moved Jesus with compassion! This was the source of the urgency that led to activity!

For the next 3 1/2 years He went throughout the land of Judea: “Preaching the Gospel to the poor, healing the brokenhearted, delivering the captives, healing the blind, liberating the bruised, and preaching the acceptable year of the Lord!” Luke 4:18

This activity brought with it a great expectancy as lives were changed, bodies healed and souls were saved into the Kingdom of God!

Now you and I have an unprecedented opportunity to follow in the footsteps of Jesus and to do the things that He did– because we have seen those things that He has seen! John 14:20

Monday, March 20, 2006

Wake Up And Do Something!

This picture was taken by photographer, Kevin Carter, in 1994 and won a Pulitzer Prize. The picture depicts a famine stricken child crawling towards a United Nations food camp located just under a mile away. The vulture was waiting for the child to die, so that he could eat it. The world was shocked when it saw this picture. No one knows the outcome of this situation (including Kevin Carter, who left the scene immediately after taking the picture.) Carter committed suicide three months later after suffering severe depression.

When my wife, Melanie, called me over to her computer to look at this picture and read the above caption, the same thought immediately came to our minds. "This is exactly what many in the church are doing today!"

How could this man see this child literally "crawling for his life" and merely snap a picture and leave the scene? How could you reconcile in your heart that it would be okay for this emaciated little child to fend for itself in the face of starvation and the threat of being eaten by a vulture and just going about his own business?

Did he reason to himself; "I am not here to feed or rescue people, that is someone else's job, responsibility or gifting." or "If it is meant to be, then the child will make it to the food camp." or simply, "There are so many in this condition, what I could do would not have any great impact."

I wonder if he had to ask himself te same question afterwards? Was the realization that he could have done something the thing that pushed him over the edge and caused him to take his own life? Did the guilt of seeing the child about to die and just walking away plague him to the degree that he could not cope any further?

What about you? How many salvation starved people do you casually pass on a daily basis as they struggle to find the only spiritual food that can keep them from dying and going to hell (Jesus)? How many people have passed by as the vulture of this world (Satan) waits to pounce on their fallen, starving souls and you just walk on by without lifting a finger to help?

Do you ever say that winning the lost is the responsibility of someone else? Do you say that your job (or gift) is doing something other than rescuing the lost and dying as they struggle in their sin. Maybe you have been called to do something a little less intense (like just take pictures of the problem).

On every street, in every shopping mall, school, and place of business, there are multitudes just like this starving, dying child needing you to do something MORE than just gaze at their situation. They need YOU to chase off the vultures of death, hell and destruction and carry them (if you must) to the only place that they can be fed (the Cross of the Lord Jesus Christ).

If you don' have already committed spiritual suicide. Do you think that the parent of this child would look at the Pulitzer Prize winning photograph and say, "Well done!"

Neither will God, the Father.

Ezekekiel 3:1818 When I say to a wicked man, 'You will surely die,' and you do not warn him or speak out to dissuade him from his evil ways in order to save his life, that wicked man will die for his sin, and I will hold you accountable for his blood."

I Thought We Were Fighting for "Freedom?"

Afghan Man Faces Death for Allegedly Converting to Christianity
Sunday, March 19, 2006

KABUL, Afghanistan — An Afghan man who allegedly converted from Islam to Christianity is being prosecuted in a Kabul court and could be sentenced to death, a judge said Sunday.

The defendant, Abdul Rahman, was arrested last month after his family went to the police and accused him of becoming a Christian, Judge Ansarullah Mawlavezada told the Associated Press in an interview. Such a conversion would violate the country's Islamic laws.

Rahman, who is believed to be 41, was charged with rejecting Islam when his trial started last week, the judge said.

During the hearing, the defendant allegedly confessed that he converted from Islam to Christianity 16 years ago when he was 25 and working as a medical aid worker for Afghan refugees in neighboring Pakistan, Mawlavezada said.

Afghanistan's constitution is based on Shariah law, which states that any Muslim who rejects their religion should be sentenced to death.

"We are not against any particular religion in the world. But in Afghanistan, this sort of thing is against the law," the judge said. "It is an attack on Islam. ... The prosecutor is asking for the death penalty."
The prosecutor, Abdul Wasi, said the case was the first of its kind in Afghanistan.

He said that he had offered to drop the charges if Rahman changed his religion back to Islam, but the defendant refused.

Mawlavezada said he would rule on the case within two months.

Afghanistan is a deeply conservative society and 99 percent of its 28 million people are Muslim. The rest are mainly Hindus.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

NYC Outreach "The Boys Are Back In Town"

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"Healing the brokenhearted" Luke 4:18

I Kings 17:66 "The RAVENS brought him bread and meat in the morning, and bread and meat in the evening; and he drank from the brook."
One of the highlights of this year's Mardi Gras Outreach in New Orleans was our community outreach in the hard-hit St. Bernard Parish (East New Orleans) on Saturday February 25th.

Having been blessed to utilize the New Orleans Ministry and Command Center as our RAVEN CAMP site (set up by the Church of God), we had a ready made opportunity to take advantage of 1) an area of the city that had experienced great devastation 2) a warehouse full of food and supplies needing to be dispersed to a people with enormous needs.

By 10:00 AM that morning cars began to line up on Judge Perez Drive in front of the relief center. Within an hour the line was numbering more than 200 cars! The team leaped into action and assembled just over 200 boxes of food stuffs and cleaning items to be given to those so patiently waiting in line for help. We had planned on beginning at 1:00 PM, but the need is such in that area that people are willing to wait for hours on end for things that most of us would just take for granted.
By 12:00 NOON, all 200 (+) initial boxes had been given out and the line was longer than ever! we then went to a "double line" and just placed the paleted itmes directly into each vehicle as they made their way to the front of the line. During the distribution it rained on the team twice--but they just kept on going! The final car came through for supplies as nightfall came and the final count was probably around 600 cars, representing 1000's of family members effected by Hurricane Katrina.
"I was hungry, did you feed Me?" Jesus asked in Matthew 25. "Yes, Jesus we did." The Raven Team answered that day.
While the food, cleaning items, and supplies were a great joy to distribute, the true "relief" was that each person had the Gospel spoken AND demonstrated to them several times in the course of their wait.
We had placed team members at about 20 yard intervals up and down the street to minister to each car of people that came--and MANY CAME TO JESUS THAT DAY! It was such a blessing to see someone on each side of an automoblie ministering to a husband and wife or mother and daughter.
Many tears flowed and many lives were changed that day through the power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and about 125 faithful servants willing to "go tell" through their actions and words.