May Blossoms

Dear Friends and Family:

“Love your neighbor as yourself.  Love does no wrong to anyone, so love satisfies all of God’s requirements.  Romans 13:9,10″

This spring we are reaching out into the community now that the grip of winter is over.  Our monthly Artists + Friends Community Potluck Dinner has been growing in many ways.  Each month we have 45-60 people coming to share a potluck meal and art work with each other. There are performers, visual artists, ceramicists, writers, poets , and we all gather to share our true selves with each other and celebrate what joins us together._MG_3602_MG_3617

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Michael and I also met with some of our former students from Kingdom School for dinner and prayer: 8 adults and 5 babies under the age of 3!  So much fun!

The Icons for Saint Vincent’s Church are completed and will be dedicated on Pentecost! May 24th 11:00 am service you’re all invited!  It will be an exciting moment to see them unveiled!

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Michael is going through a period of intense discernment to see where the Lord is leading him next. He has been exploring the opportunity for further training in Chaplaincy and is applying to Albany Medical Center to join the excellent program they offer there for Chaplains. He is also exploring the Lutheran denomination to see whether the Lord has a place for him in that stream. In the mean time we are beginning to see that our role within the artist community  is really laying a foundation for ministering to a group which has often rejected Christianity but are seriously searching for a fuller meaning to their creativity and life. God has extraordinary ways of weaving peoples lives together after long intervals of time, so we connect again in a different context for another opportunity to be in relationship. As we know God is all about relationships, with Him and with other people. We seem to be in a season of growing many new relationships and it is very life giving especially in the artist community.

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We feel an excitement that God is forming a cohesive plan, we do not see it clearly yet but it is as though it is being created around us. The former students from Kingdom School are all on new and exciting paths, many of them are going through interior growing and healing. God has a plan and we are so excited to be just one part of what he is doing in the Hudson Valley. Please keep us in your prayers and let us know how we can pray for you.

Love, prayers, and blessings from us to you!

Christine and Michael

www.christinehales.com

www.mickhales.com

www.americanassociationoficonographers.com 

www.newchristianicons.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring is Finally here!

Hello Friends and Family:photo

What a long harsh winter! It’s only been this weekend that we have started to have some warm weather.  Finally starting to see crocuses and daffodils.  I used the long indoor hours to complete the large Icon commission for Saint Vincent’s Church in Albany.  It’s been rewarding and a great experience to “write” the images of saints who are inspirations in terms of social justice and caring for the poor.  There will be an installation sometime in May – will be sure to let you know about it._MG_1560

Spring is a perfect time to be thinking about the Celtic saints, particularly the way they saw God in nature. I love that Saint Brigit was known for blessing the dew of May and would leave a cloth out overnight to catch the Holy dew fall.  So beautiful when someone’s prayer life is that strong. Brigit is the next saint I will be doing an Icon of!photo

We went to the Voice of the Prophets conference last week and it was great to re connect with so many friends and some of our students. We realized that we are the only members of our organization in this part of New York. That’s a drawback because we would prefer to have others we could do ministry with!

Michael has been going with local pastors to host revival activities in Columbia County. They have about 6 dates throughout the spring and summer. Michael is sponsoring the August 1 Tent Revival meeting here in Philmont. He is arranging for a worship team and speakers from Baltimore to help out with it all.photophoto

Our ministry has been hosting the Artists + Friends Community Potluck Dinner on the third Friday of every month for four months now. Each night we have many artists come to share a meal, show slides of their work, and build a community of creatives who want to help each other grow.  It’s exciting and we hope you can all keep us in your prayers.  Really stepping out as a ministry into the community and building relationships outside the walls of the Church.

We need your prayers and your support in all these endeavors! We are so glad you are in our lives, and that we can count on your prayers – it makes such a difference. We love topiary for you too!

Stay in touch, love and prayers, Christine and Michael

www.mickhales.com

www.christinehales.com

www.americanassociationoficonographers.com

www.newchristianicons.com

 

Videos in February

Hello Friends and Family:station1

Where we live is reminiscent of Siberia now – snow lasting for days, a brief respite then starting up again. Snowfall is now measured in feet and icicles are measured the same.  Single digit temperatures.  All of you in South Africa or Southern states, bask in your warmth and pray for us!

But we hardy ones in the North are working indoors on computer based activities :). Michael has completed two neat videos.  The first one is called “The Armour of God”, made with our friend Tyler Slade. Here’s the link: 

Michael feels like he is getting called back to working with video for the Lord. Particularly using the visual image with scripture in a contemporary style. There are many people who have not read the bible and really have little chance of coming across God’s word in their lives. Somehow, we need to make it available to them in a way which is dynamic and memorable, but not diluted. The visual image is  powerful, so combining it with the word of God can cut through the tendency to reject the Bible as irrelevant in todays world. For ‘the Armour of God’ video he feels like it is for intercessors, prayer warriors as well as those who have never heard of the passage from Ephesians before. It reminds us that we are in a battle all the time and we need to use the protection God has given us toSerenity declare who He is- Lord of this nation.

We ‘ve also just returned from an Immanuel Retreat in the Washington DC area, hosted by our friends the Stalcups from ANGA and the Acanforas at Church of the Apostles. It was called  The Immanuel Approach. It was great and our friends George and Jane Conger prayed us back home through a snow storm!  We are excited about what God is doing in the Baltimore and DC area and hope to go down there again soon.

My exhibition in Lancaster PA was fun -God is always showing me what comes next! I’m looking forward to the Icon Retreat in NYC later this month and the Hillsdale Icon class is going well- the Albany class hasn’t met for over a month due to snow cancellations!

The second Video Michael has made is for my Icon writing classes. Here’s the link for that one:

 

We so much appreciate your prayers.  We particularly need prayers for finances, good sales and commissions for me and for Michael, and a church we can be planted in.  Our ministry has three community outreaches this spring and summer and we are praying about offering a weekly course as well.  Our monthly prayer group is a good prayer furnace and we lift all of you up in prayer, that God blesses you with more of His love and kindness and safety in travel.

Until next month,

with love and prayers,

Christine and Michael

 

 

 

Identity Issues -in January!!!

photoDear Friends and Family:

How are you? I am recovering from a virus, it has been utterly freezing for months, AND we had to cancel weekend plans due to…yes, more snow! Not fun, but probably wiser for me to stay home and recuperate :). AND future plan!

I’m planning on finishing the large Icon commission for Saint Vincent’s in April, God willing. Just about to  get on the board – Dorothy Day. So looking forward to praying with and about her and the amazing woman of God she was. Just started teaching a new Icon writing class in Hillsdale, and will be leading an Introduction to Icon Writing Retreat at Saint James Episcopal Church in NYC in February. It got filled up in the first week of listing it!photo

So, working hard to get through the winter, God has blessed me with some lovely insights about who I REALLY am, and who He REALLY is. He is so good! Our identity is in Him, not our Self. Flannery O’Connor talks about the “True Self & The False Self”, “Thank You for changing me, Lord, enabling me to slough off the false self that prevents me from becoming a true follower.” From ” The Province of Joy-Praying with Flannery O’Connor.”

“I thank you for the continual opportunity for rebirth that you offer to me through the examples of Your Holy ones.

Even St. Paul, who counted himself among the gravest of sinners, was struck from his horse by the force of Your love and was taught through blindness to see the need for a radical remaking himself. So Saul became Paul through Your mercy.”

photoThese quotes from O’Connor are so apt when praying about the world crises, about poverty, about the powers that govern this world, and about our own individual lives. We can pray that God gives us His insight, and opens our hearts to continual rebirth and the life that is the most exciting and satisfying in Him.

A couple of other events we would love your prayers to cover: The Artist Community Potluck Dinner we organized in Hudson at the First Presbyterian Church was very well attended. We continue this month on Feb. 27 and are following loosely the “Artist Way, Spiritual Guide to Creativity” by Julia Cameron. So far it has brought good people together and I’m hoping for some nice friendships and people getting closer to God’s creativity.photo

ALso, Michael is working on his new video- it’s under wraps but a hint is that it’s about Ephesians 6! So prayers are appreciated for that too:

Michael here: I just want to add that when God puts an unction on you to do something there goes with it an excitement to get it done, to be in the creative process of doing it. That is how it feels with this video. I am excited when I get some time to work on it, the fact that I am a beginner in the field of videography does not deter me because I believe God wants this video to go out and go viral. The bible talks of how news of Jesus went viral when he was ministering, the news went person to person through all the countryside so everyone in the community came to see him speak and heal. The news of Jesus and what he does is still catching when it is done in a real and exciting way. There is nothing more exciting than watch God heal someone and that news travels fast and far, even now. This video is not directly about healing but it about being on God’s side and being equipped to stay in the fight. Because we are in a fight but God has given us the equipment to come through and complete the purposes He has for us. This nation has so much at stake at the moment we all need to have on the ‘Whole Armour of God’.IMG_8266

We love you all so much and always look forward to your emails and comments. Let us know how we can pray for you.

Love and Prayers,

Christine and Michael

Advent Waiting

Dear Friends and Family:    _MG_9195

One of my friends has made his Christmas puddings and is now waiting… and we are all in the season of lighting candles and waiting.  It is a Holy time, and we look forward to celebrating Christmas in a special way each year.

Looking back over 2014, we realize the direction that God is giving us and want to share that with you, our trusted partners:

Living in the Capital region which has the lowest churched population in America, we are  recognizing the need for changing our strategy about how to bring the Kingdom to our region.

archgabrielWe realized that operating as a ministry we are competing with other churches and ministries for the same small group of people. Meanwhile, the unchurched remain disinterested or sporadically participating in ministry activities.  Power evangelism needs to be adapted to reach a hardened and skeptical population.

Over the past year, Kingdom Arts Ministry has been involved in building Pastoral relationships through Michael’s involvement with the Capital District Ministers Association. He has also been the guest speaker at several area local churches, regularly brought meals to the elderly through the meals on wheels program, and been a strong supporter of the local “Community Spirit Day” that attracted over 250 low income local families to hear the Gospel message preached through Teen Challenge and local churches. The message was mingled with free food and entertainment for the children and held in our Town Park.

photo copy 10Christine has been reaching out to artists  in the capital region and has a strong desire to create more community events for artists. Last Spring, she partnered with the Columbia County Arts Council and the Hudson Chamber of Commerce to produce an exhibition and performance of local artists meeting the business community. She has also started an Artist Way group –a spiritual program of development for artists, in our home. She is working on a large commission of eight Icons of modern saints for Saint Vincents Church in Albany, as well as leading Icon retreats in Saratoga and an ongoing Icon writing class and fellowship at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Albany.photo copy 9

Waiting for 2015, we realize that we are laying foundations of relationships that we can partner with over the next year to find ways to collaborate and bring a culture of God and honor to our region. We are so grateful to all of you who partner with us financially and in prayer. Without your help we really would not be able to do what we do. Our world is certainly in a difficult time and challenging in so many ways. We draw strength and joy from your prayers and support. You are instruments of God’s help and a source of His provision for us. Thank you! LadySign

Next month we will outline our direction as a ministry for 2015. We have already been laying the groundwork and it promises to be both exciting and challenging!

Thank you and we love you, Please pray for us that we stay close to God’s plan and hear His voice clearly. You are in our prayers daily too.

Love, Christine and Michael

Giving Thanks in November

Hello Friends and family:  photo 2

The fall has been so beautiful – I can’t resist sending you some photos of what it’s been looking like around here.  A great place to live if you’re a painter or photographer :).

We attended the ANGA Retreat this fall and met some great people- Betsy and Sam Stalcup have a ministry called Godhealstoday and we are looking into partnering with them for teaching and prayer ministry events in the new year.

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We are focusing on local prayer partnering opportunities and are happy with the relationships God is bringing to us.  Last night we had a prayer meeting in our home and prayed for Philmont, Claverack and all the families within our area.  We plan to meet regularly to pray and share about the ways God is answering our prayers.

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THe Albany Icon class I teach is growing into a prayerful community of artists that are growing in their understanding and technical skill in Icon writing. _MG_6745__ The Healing Icon Retreats in Saratoga have been really wonderful. Action packed for two days, but such a joy to see people concentrating in prayer and fellowship for two days.

 

 

At Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Albany, we will be giving workshops for their Holy Spirit Weekend, November 21 & 22 ,.My workshop will be “The Joy of Prophetic Painting”.  This will be a hands-on workshop and all are welcome. Michael will be teaching on deliverance.

Often we have no feed back for how our prayers have helped others. At the ANGA retreat sitting at our small group table was someone we did not know and he surprised us by saying Michael had prayed for him in Brooklyn nearly nine months before and he had received healing from a very painful nerve condition. Sometimes we get to hear what God did when we reached out to others but often that is not the case._MG_6624__ Michael loves to pray for healing for people and yesterday he had a visit to NYC and got to pray for three different people for healing, one in an elevator and two on the streets. The reactions initially are surprise that someone would offer to pray, then always real gratitude and then the comments like ‘I feel peace, or warmth or soothing just happened’. The last person he prayed for last night said ” Wow, thank you so much for your prayer. I really felt something and I’m Jewish!’ What Joy God is!

“Give thanks to the Lord, for He is Good! His faithful love endures forever.” Psalm 136:1

We give thanks to the Lord for you all and keep you in our prayers.
Blessings and love,

Michael and Christine

 

October Blessings

Dear Friends and Family:IMG_7482

The beauty of a Hudson Valley fall is upon us! And with that, so many artful things to do that we keep hopping from one opening to another. Yesterday was Arts walk with my new Ezekiel making it’s debut on Warren Street. The link to my arts/Icon blog is here for more of my art information.

We have been praying for peace in Syria and the Ukraine, asking God to dispatch His angels to protect the innocent and bring miracles to His people.

IMG_7476In Icon class last week, we read of the Celtic Saint Connaire the Pious who, while she was praying, all the churches in Ireland appeared to her in a vision. It seemed that a tower of fire rose up to heaven from each side of those churches.  There’s more to her story, particularly about her petitioning for a women’s right to a Holy burial to St Senan.

“You are persistent said Senan.”

“Well then,Cannaire replied,”Will I get what I asked for? Will you give me a place to live on this  island and the  Holy Sacrament of Eucharist?”  HIs answer was yes! She wasn’t afraid to petition with persistence and that is what we are doing now for the middle East.  Petitioning persistently with prayer.  (The Connaire story comes from the Celtic daily Prayer Book put out bu the Northumbria Community.)IMG_7359

Michael has been visiting many churches and praying with Pastors in our area. He is seeing more and more pastors and leaders being repositioned, moving from one situation or church to start something new, often not knowing what is next but believing that God has called them out of where they had been. He has also discerned that the governance nature of Albany as Capital of New York state, has many feeder influences from other constituents which do not want there to be a spiritual change in Albany which requires a different form of intercession. We are praying into having a local prayer community in addition to the outreach we do in Albany.  We plan to launch a prayer gathering in November and another one in January . We very much appreciate your prayers for God’s wisdom and guidance.

God has been blessing us both with many new friendships and opportunities to meet people who are not churched. That is where we feel led, to use the Celtic model of Evangelization that calls for formation of relationships and friendships first.  It is wonderful and we are kept pretty busy with it all

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I was blessed to present my drawings for the eight large icons for Saint Vincent’s Church in Albany today. They are going to be a beautiful blend of old and new.  So excited to begin the painting now! Please do keep us in your prayers -we can feel them and you are in ours!

Love,

Michael and Christine

“He walks with God who speaks to God in prayer, IMG_7494

and brings to Him his daily care.”

www.mickhales.com

www.christinehales.com

www.iconwritingclasses.com

www.newchristianicons.com

www.newchristiaiconsblog.com

September News!

Dear Friends and Family:

Such a beautiful summer and so much to be thankful for.  We hope that you are all looking forward to fall and the new season.  Michael preached yesterday at West Hoosick Baptist Church and we were blessed to minister to the people there.  Here are two links to sermon excerpts:   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lL65r75seBE&feature=em-upload_owner

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CKJXcImspl0&feature=em-upload_owner

I had some trouble with the sound, sorry.  I need to improve my video skills :).

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Kingdom Arts Ministry’s School, “Fired Up” has extended its Fall deadline to Wed, September 10.  Email Michael Hales for an application form: mhales@halesart.com

Fired Up is a high energy, hands on training school that supports people and local churches by training adults, aged 18 and older who are passionate about pursuing their God given destiny. Students will attend three away conferences to facilitate their ability to step out, have hands on training,  take risks and experience ministries that promote a culture of love, faith and honor.

Many Christians ask, ‘Is there More?’  Well we know there is always more when you pursue Jesus with a hunger. He responds with more revelation of who He is and where He wants to go with you. The Fired Up course is an experience of pursuing Jesus and the gift that He has given us, The Holy Spirit. Many Christians are unable to say what the Holy Spirit is let alone give you a personal account of being touched by it. This course is designed to give people an awakening into the nature of the Holy Spirit. If you are hungry for that in your life then this is for you no matter what denomination or church you go to. You will have a life changing experience and start on the road to your God given destiny.

If you have questions call Michael Hales on 518 672 0014 or send an e mail.photo copy 8

For information on Christine’s Healing Icon Retreat in Saratoga Springs, October 25 &26,   email Catherine Lanci at: nurselanci@hotmail.com

If you’d like to donate to our scholarship fund for students who want to take the school but can’t afford it, send checks to: Kingdom Arts Ministry, PO Box 927, Philmont, NY  12565

Kingdom Arts Ministry is a registered 501-c3 non profit.

 

Blessings and love,

Michael and Christine Hales

http://www.newchristianicons.com

http://www.mickhales.com

 

 

August and Classes for the Fall

Dear Friends and Family:  photo
We are excited about the possibility of teaching people again this fall.  So we are getting the word out where ever we can about the FIRED UP course Kingdom School has planned.

This weekend Michael will be preaching a sermon at Our Savior’s Lutheran on the verse, ‘Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand’, James 5:8. The heart being that guiding centre of our personal values system. The direction we follow and what decides how and why we live our lives the way we do. The second part of the verse concerns a time element, ‘the coming of the Lord is at hand.’  Those two parts, how we live our lives and how much time we have, is why I am so sure that the Fired Up course is really significant in what God is doing in the Albany area.  Fired UP a copy

We see a repositioning of a lot of different Christians coming into the Albany area, people moving out of situations controlled by the spirit of religion into new life giving situations. There has to be a change. We have to seek renewing of our hearts, we have become cold hearted and unable to be the vessels of God’s love. The Fired Up course will be an intense awakening of people who need to get out of the security of the boat and start walking on the water for Jesus. Its time. Its time to stop playing church and to start being living vessels of the Lord Jesus Christ, on fire and in love.    photo

So please let people know about Fired Up, the information is on Kingdom Arts Ministry website. This will be a challenging life changing experience and I can not wait to see who God has chosen for it. If you are unable to make it yourself but would like to contribute towards the scholarship fund there are people who could use some help financially.

 

See Christine’s Art/Icon blog for her news this month.

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Sending you love and blessings,

Michael and Christine          www.mickhales.com      www.christinehales.com

Fired Up!

Dear Friends and family:  photo 4

 

We are really excited about the upcoming Kingdom School’s course this year called FIRED UP. It will have all the qualities of previous Kingdom Schools but in an intensive  period of ten weeks. It will include the Pursuit Conference in Mechanicsburg, PA, featuring Bob Hazlett and Will Hart; the Awakened to Destiny in Harrisburg with Randy Clark and Bill Johnson; and a street ministry training session in Baltimore with Jay Baylor.  That is besides the regular classes and other ministry opportunities that we have prepared. photo 5

We are really hoping that groups from different churches can go through this experience together so that they relationally grow together. Relationships in the Kingdom of God are the most important part of it all, with each other and with Jesus and this Fired Up will create strong relational bonds. So even though we are in the midst of the summer and everything slows down we are expectant for September and an exciting time with Kingdom School. So if you know people in the Albany area who are hungry to have the Holy Spirit Fired Up in their lives forward this on to them.photo 2

We can tell that God is working in this area and he is repositioning people opening new doors. We are praying for a center in the Albany area that we can operate different mission based visions from. We do believe and have been for a while that God is waiting to have a revival in this area and that is why we feel the the Fired Up is so timely and important. So please pray with us for opportunities to start to open up.

Don’t Forget Christine’s Art Opening at Beauregard Fine Arts, Rumson, NJ.opening July 31.  She’s also leading a Healing Icon Retreat in Saratoga Springs Sept 5&6, which is now over subscribed – will have a date for another one soon. Email her for a pdf brochure on that one.

looks like a great summer for the Kingdom!  Christine’s quote for the month : “And I will give you a new heart with new and right desires, and I will put a new Spirit in you.” Ezekiel 36:26

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May you all be blessed with renewal , restoration, and refreshment this month! Love and prayers to you all!

Love and blessings,

 

Michael and Christine      photo 1 copy 2

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