Peter’s charge has always been a favorite of mine: “Love the brotherhood” (1 Peter 2:17b). The word brotherhood is a collective term, denoting the whole. We are brothers and sisters in Christ, individually. Together, we are brotherhood.

Hence, the only two times the word is used, both by Peter, it is upheld by fraternal and sacrificial love and solidarity with like-minded believers in suffering for the kingdom, firm in faith, resisting every effort of the devil to pull us away from our commitment to Christ (1 Peter 5:9). It bespeaks an awareness of and appreciation for a suffering, engaged and dedicated brotherhood.

To further that awareness and to cultivate that solidarity, BNc was born. And as a part of that mission, we invite you to partner with BNc.

Dub yourself a BNc patron. You need no one’s permission to work on behalf of this effort to strengthen our sense of brotherhood.

Here are some ideas what you can do.

Lift up this work before the Father. Ask that we get the facts right, maintain balance, demonstrate fairness, show kindness, take courage when it counts. Pray that BNc fulfill its mission, contribute positively and serve humbly.

Talk to other brothers and sisters in Christ about BNc. Spread the word, email your address list, talk about it in discussion groups, mention stories on forums, put links on your webpages, recommend it in your church bulletin.

Talk to us about the brotherhood. Send us tips, stories, leads, reports, interviews. Information is our lifeblood, and you are our lifeline.

Get a feel for what we do, for whom we serve, how we work. Pick up on our style, how we talk, what we communicate. The better we can integrate, the more we can transmit the vivacity of a church moved by the wondrous Spirit of God.

Pour out the perfume upon BNc that will prepare us to share in the sacrifice of Christ for his people. That might include a financial gift, which will become more important as BNc expands its role.

The Lord has blessed our first year. Many brothers and sisters have held up our hands, have pronounced their blessings, have shared their joy.

We ask his guidance for the next year, his hand upon us for the next steps, his power for the challenges ahead.

As we continue to build and dream, partner with us as we celebrate the bond of unity in truth that makes us what we are. Brotherhood.

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us

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