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April 2010:
Volume 3, Issue 1
In This Issue
It Takes a Whole Village
SLS Around the World
Faith and Medical Healing
Support Sweeten Life Systems
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After a winter with record breaking snowfalls, spring has begun to arrive. I look forward to the re-birth that spring brings.

In this newsletter, I will bring you up to date on: 
  • Findings and celebrations associated with our research project, "It Takes a Whole village"
  • Our return to Scandinavia with plans for deep-level training on improving relationships with God, self, and neighbors
  • My trip to a conference on the relationship of spirituality, religion, and health 
Since January, I've been blessed by speaking at several conferences on the power of healthy relationships, and from March 21-31, I will be ministering in Denmark. Please keep my trip and our mission in your prayers.
It Takes a Whole Village
This has been a wonderfully busy winter. Sweeten Life Systems (SLS) has been deeply involved with the Hatton Foundation, working with families with special needs children.  We have called the project, "It Takes a Whole Village" as a reminder that welcoming all gifts is a vital attribute of a healthy community. The practical, specific insights coming from the study can positively impact the ways special needs families are treated for many generations.
Jim Donovan, retired Research fellow from P&G has taken his 33 year experience to develop a study process of breakthrough importance.  The leadership team of Andrea Bowsher, Ron Peake, Steve Griebling with Research Assistants Elaine Hansen, Eric Hansen, Deb McIndoe, Phil Deschler, Karin Dyke, and Kathy Mills have not only dug deeply within the lives of twelve families to find golden nuggets of action while developing relationships of care with each other and the families that are deep and meaningful.
We recently had two great gatherings with the "It Takes a Whole Village" families and team:
  • A dinner hosted by Tri-County Assembly of God (TCA)
  • A celebration at Vineyard Community Church (VCC)
TCA out did themselves, providing linen tablecloths and fresh red roses on every table for a long-overdue date night for the couples.  For our celebration for the parents and children, VCC provided not only a location, but personal support so kids, parents, and supporters had a great time.  SLS presented every couple with a "Noble Prize" for the "nobility, perseverance, creativity, faith, and love" they model.
By coming together at both events, our families, who all face similar struggles, made deep connections with each other. Friendships have blossomed.
We need your help as we plan future steps. The research indicates a strong need for a bigger study so we can better develop action steps that we know will work to help entire families. Will you pray with us about foundations and individuals who might be willing to fund that work? The Hatton Foundation is very generous in their support but we need to look for additional sources of grants from people committed to an ethic of supporting all of God's children.
Second, we need to find churches and Christian groups who have a history of serving special people through ministries and financial support. The Stephen Ministers and similar Peer Helper groups come to mind as well as Christian schools that have community support services as part of their curriculum.  We will meet with them and explain the details of the next phase of the project.  Remember, we welcome your financial support.
Sweeten Life Systems Around the World

Back to Scandinavia

We have been deeply involved in spreading the good news of the power of healthy relationships with God, self and neighbor in Scandinavia since 1986. Several organizations in Norway, Sweden and Denmark adopted our model of "Equipping the saints to DO the ministry" and set up centers that have translated the materials and trained hundreds of Helpers to minister the hopeful words of Christ to thousands. 
Dr. Galina Chentsova, head of the Russian ministry Liferoute.ru will join me in Copenhagen from March 21-31, where we will both teach and consult.

My former students, Kirsten Callesen and Peder Poulsen took our work farther than almost any other leaders. Kirsten is a Ph. D Psychologist who established a unique center for the families and children with Aspergers type of autism. I will visit her center and learn about her methods and insights to use back in Cincinnati.

Peder is a Family Therapist whose zeal for life and loving God has led him to found a Family Healing Center in Denmark. I return to be with him to share my insights about ways to bring the love and power of God to a dispirited church.

Rev. Peter Dyhr, heads Discipling A Whole Nation (DAWN) and has planted 400 new churches among immigrants in Denmark.  He requested that Galina and I consult with him about setting up Teleios Centers among the Russian speaking immigrant churches.  He wants to facilitate healthy personal and family functioning as we have in Russia.

We need your personal, spiritual and financial support for travel and expenses for both Galina and me.  Prayerfully ask God how you can be involved with us in reviving Europe where our ancestors grew up and learned about Jesus and His love.
Faith and Medical Healing
I was able to attend an exciting seminar with Dr. Harold Koenig, M.D., an expert researcher on spirituality, religion and health from Duke University.

At http://spiritualhealingandgrowth.blogspot.com you can read about the research he presented as I will be adding studies and insights over the next few months.  The research definitely indicates that Jesus is still the Great Physician!
Support Sweeten Life Systems
Our work is a story of collaboration and community. Your donation to SLS will help support our training ministries in Russia and the former USSR as well as our work training and giving pro bono assistance to ministers, missionaries and key Para Church leaders.

To support Gary and the team you can:
  • Donate
  • Pray
  • Volunteer
Mail your donation to: 
Sweeten Life Systems, Box 498455,
Cincinnati, Ohio 45249

Or donate online click here

For more information contact us at 513.300.5065 or gary@sweetenlife.com.
Gary Sweeten
Sweeten Life Systems