Friday, December 31, 2010

I Saw Three Ships

Les Downs Plays "I Saw Three Ships" from Bruce Prescott on Vimeo.


Dr. Les Downs opens his 2010 Christmas Eve piano recital at NorthHaven Church in Norman, Oklahoma by playing "I Saw Three Ships."

I Wonder as I Wander

Les Downs Plays "I Wonder as I Wander" from Bruce Prescott on Vimeo.


Dr. Les Downs plays "I Wonder as I Wander" at his 2010 Christmas Eve piano recital at NorthHaven Church in Norman, Oklahoma.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Go Tell It on the Mountain

Les Downs Plays "Go Tell It on the Mountain" from Bruce Prescott on Vimeo.


Dr. Les Downs plays "Go Tell It on the Mountain" at his 2010 Christmas Eve piano recital at NorthHaven Church in Norman, Oklahoma.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

We Three Kings

Les Downs Plays "We Three Kings" from Bruce Prescott on Vimeo.


Dr. Les Downs plays "We Three Kings" at his 2010 Christmas Eve piano recital at NorthHaven Church in Norman, Oklahoma.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Rise Up, Shepherds, and Follow

Les Downs Plays "Rise Up, Shepherds, and Follow" from Bruce Prescott on Vimeo.


Dr. Les Downs plays "Rise Up, Shepherds, and Follow," a traditional spiritual, at his 2010 Christmas Eve piano recital at NorthHaven Church in Norman, Oklahoma.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Bring a Torch, Jeannette, Isabella

Dr. Les Downs Plays a Traditional French Carol from Bruce Prescott on Vimeo.


Dr. Les Downs plays "Bring a Torch, Jeannette, Isabella," a traditional French Christmas carol, at his 2010 Christmas Eve piano recital at NorthHaven Church in Norman, Oklahoma.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Angels from the Realms of Glory

Les Downs plays Angels from the Realms of Glory from Bruce Prescott on Vimeo.


Dr. Les Downs plays Henry T. Smart's arrangement of "Angels from the Realms of Glory" at his 2010 Christmas Eve piano recital at NorthHaven Church in Norman, Oklahoma.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Fum, Fum, Fum

Dr. Les Downs Plays Fum, Fum, Fum from Bruce Prescott on Vimeo.


Dr. Les Downs treated NorthHaven Church to a concert of Christmas carols before the Christmas Eve service last night. Fum, Fum, Fum was the finale of the concert.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Robert Parham Interviews Sultan Swalehe Zomboko


Note: If the video does not load from the link on the picture, click on the title to this blog to go to the source video.

Robert Parham Interviews Sultan Swalehe Zomboko from Bruce Prescott on Vimeo.


Robert Parham of Ethics Daily interviews Sultan Swalehe Zomboko, Imam of a village in Tanzania. Parham was part of a joint Baptist-Muslim effort to distribute insecticide treated mosquito nets in Tanzania. They discuss relations between Muslims and Christians in Tanzania. Gervaz Lushajy of the Feza School for Boys in Dar Es Salaam translates.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Baptists and Muslims Working Together to fight Malaria in Africa

Muslims and Baptists Working Together to fight Malaria in Africa from Bruce Prescott on Vimeo.

T Thomas, a Baptist, of HisNets and Orhan Osman, a Muslim, of the Institute of Interfaith Dialog explain to villagers in Tanzania why they are working together to fight malaria in Africa.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Bethlehem Night

Bethlehem Night from Bruce Prescott on Vimeo.

Podcast: Kirk Smalley Interview


Podcast (20 MB Mp3) of Dr. Bruce Prescott's 12-19-10 "Religious Talk" radio interview with Kirk Smalley. We talk about the tragic death of his son Ty Smalley, the work of the "Stand for the Silent" group, and Kirk's campaign to help put an end to bullying in the public schools.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Remembering a Time When Baptist Queens Ruled the World

The New York Times has published a story about the time when Wayland Baptist's Flying Queens ruled the world of women's basketball.

I'll bet the guy driving that convertible wishes he still owned that car today.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Bantering About CBF's Future

Ron Crawford has been bantering with Bill Leonard about the future of CBF.

I'm with Ron on this one.  

One succinct paragraph by Crawford summarizes most of my own concerns about the current direction of CBF: 
I find no fault with those who led us out of Egypt; but it is helpful to acknowledge the impact of key organizational foundation stones. Early in the life of CBF, it was decided the only thing one could build a denomination around was missions. Consequently, CBF missions became our primary entree. Other traditional entrees on denominational menus were quickly turned into side dishes: literature publication, theological education, annuity and health services and a variety of ethical and social concerns. Now, we are discovering a single entrée will not sustain a broad clientele. There are many people who love good home-cooked missions, but there is a much larger potential audience who like a variety of full entrees, not just one.
CBF has been especially timid in addressing ethical issues and social concerns.  I am convinced that our failure to collectively take a prophetic stand against our government's pre-emptive warfare, human rights violations, and use of torture has undermined the credibility of our witness.   When the world desperately needed the citizens of God's kingdom to be a voice for justice and speak truth to power, we were silent. 

I fear that for quite some time, in the eyes of the unbelieving world, even our finest mission endeavors will bear the stain of the American Empire that we unquestioningly sustained by our passive acquiesence.

Tanzania Travelogue

I have been reflecting on experiences during the joint Baptist-Muslim mosquito net distribution in Tanzania. Here are some of my thoughts.

First, I was impressed with the mutual respect that people of different faiths show one another in Tanzania. Every village we visited to distribute mosquito nets had both Muslim and Christian members living as neighbors and working together. In both the private schools and the schools run by the government, Muslim children and Christian children were studying together and playing with one another with no signs of division or tension.

Second, I was especially impressed by the hospitality of our Muslim hosts. They provided our transportation, lodging, and meals during our stay. Expecting and fully prepared for Spartan accommodations, we were pleasantly surprised to have private, air conditioned rooms at the Giraffe Hotel on the Mbezi beach with a spectacular view of the Indian Ocean. Every meal we ate was good, but the highlights of the trip were the times we were invited to eat in the homes of the headmasters of the Turkish sponsored private schools in Dar Es Salaam and Zanzibar. In both cities we were treated to multiple courses of exquisitely prepared Mediterranean cuisine.

Both headmasters went out of their way to make sure we were comfortable during our visit to their homes. The weather in Tanzania is very hot and humid. Electricity is expensive. A simple home electrical connect fee is more than four times the average annual income in Zanzibar. Few are so fortunate as to have an air conditioner in their home and few of those who do have air conditioners can afford to run them much. The headmasters were no exception, but they made sure that the room in which we ate and conversed was comfortable during the time of our visit.

Third, I was impressed with the self-confidence, initiative and industry demonstrated by many of the people I saw in Tanzania. The country has an abundance of people who appear willing and eager to better themselves by working hard to improve their living conditions. They lack good educational opportunities (a pupil teacher ratio of 120 to 1 is not conducive to good education), vocational training for 21st century job skills, and a reasonable possibility of attaining gainful employment.

Fourth, I am concerned about the number of young men I saw standing at the side of the road and sitting on porches looking for something to do. Pineapples, mangos, coconuts, and bananas are abundant in the areas around Dar Es Salaam. No one is starving for food at that location, but many seem starved for something constructive to do with their time. Jobs are scarce. Internet service is rare. Meanwhile, when foreign countries like China undertake construction projects in Tanzania, they are also exporting tens of thousands of their own citizens to fill up the manual labor jobs that Tanzanians could easily do.

Finally, I am concerned about the subordinate role of women that was apparent in both Muslim and Christian society in Tanzania. I only remember seeing two women with positions of responsibility, the principal of a primary school and a social worker, and both were Christians working for the government in positions that would traditionally be filled by women. The only woman I saw with a semblance of authority was the wife of the Turkish Ambassador who represented her husband in his absence at the Feza School’s graduation ceremony.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Kirk Smalley to be Interviewed on Religious Talk

Kirk Smalley will be my guest on the "Religious Talk" radio program this Sunday, December 19th at 10:00 AM.  We will be talking about the tragic death of Ty Smalley, bullying, and the "Stand for the Silent" campaign.  Tune in to KREF radio at 1400 on the AM dial in the Oklahoma City area or listen to the live streaming audio/video at Sports Talk 1400.

Structures of Time

Friday, December 10, 2010

HIS NETS distributes 100,000th Net


His Nets Distributes 100,000th Net from Bruce Prescott on Vimeo.


Robert Parham at Ethics Daily has posted a story about HisNets giving its 100,000th net to a Muslim mother in Tanzania.  Fetimah Ramanda received the net.

I was filming children at the Bunjub School when Robert Parham and T Thomas distributed the net to Ramanda and interviewed her for the story at Ethics Daily.  Above is video of a mother receiving a net at the same location earlier that same day.  More than 800 nets were distributed at this location.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Baptists and Muslims Working Together in Tanzania


Robert Parham at Ethics Daily has posted the first of a series of stories about the recent Baptist-Muslim joint venture to distribute mosquito nets in Tanzania.  Pictured above are boys going to get water at one of the villages we visited in Tanzania.  Pictured below is Robert Parham with the guide who directed us to a lair for some of the rare, nearly extinct, red colobus monkeys of Zanzibar.


Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Feza School Rap


Feza School Rap from Bruce Prescott on Vimeo.


I just got back from a trip with T Thomas of His Nets, Orhan Osman of the Institute for Interfaith Dialog, and Robert Parham of Ethics Daily to distribute insecticide treated mosquito nets in Tanzania.  While we were there we were invited to attend the graduation ceremony of the Feza Schools in Dar Es Salaam

Some of the boys who were graduating sang a rap about their school that proved to be a crowd pleaser.