Umbrella Conference

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June 3 - 4, 2016 Centre Street Church  •  Calgary, Alberta

The Umbrella Conference

BRINGS TOGETHER:

ministry leaders, families impacted by disability, self-advocates, professionals and support workers under one Umbrella for the purpose of learning, sharing and championing the cause to include people with disabilities in all facets of life.

 

The Umbrella Conference

BRINGS TOGETHER:

ministry leaders, families impacted by disability, self-advocates, professionals and support workers  under one Umbrella for the purpose of learning, sharing and championing the cause to include people with disabilities in all facets of life.

Keynote Speakers


Joni Eareckson Tada

Joni Eareckson Tada, the founder and Chief Executive Officer of Joni and Friends International Disability Center, is an international advocate for people with disabilities. A diving accident in 1967 left Joni Eareckson, then 17, a quadriplegic in a wheelchair. After two years of rehabilitation, she emerged with new skill and a fresh determination to help others in similar situations. She founded Joni and Friends in 1979 to provide Christ-centered programs to special-needs families, as well as training to churches.


You can learn more about Joni’s ministry at http://www.joniandfriends.org

Mark Stephenson

Mark Stephenson was ordained as Minister of the Word in the Christian Reformed Church (CRC) in 1989. He served as pastor of two churches before becoming Director of Disability Concerns for the CRC in 2006. He and his wife, Bev, have six living children, including their oldest, Nicole, who was born extremely prematurely and lives joyfully with severe, multiple disabilities.


Learn more about Mark at www.crcna.org/disability




Worship


Brian Doerksen

Brian Doerksen’s songs are known and sung in churches around the world. Popular songs include: Come, Now is the Time to Worship, Faithful One, Refiner’s Fire, Hallelujah (Your Love is Amazing) & The River. In April 2008, Brian received a JUNO award for Holy God (Contemporary Christian/Gospel Album of the year) and in November 2014, at the Covenant Awards he received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Gospel Music Association of Canada.

 

Brian currently splits his time between his hometown Abbotsford, B.C. and Three Hills, Alberta, where he is leading the new Music & Worship Arts Program at Prairie Bible College with a focus on mentoring songwriters. Brian and his wife Joyce have been married for 30+ years and have 6 children, including 2 sons with special needs (Fragile X Syndrome).


Get to know Brian by visiting: www.briandoerksen.com

SHIYR Poets

Prounced “Sheer,” The SHIYR Poets are Brian Doerksen, Calum Rees, Brian Thiessen and Teresa Trask. They are a group of friends, songwriters and musicians who came together to create, record and perform folk-rock settings of the ancient Psalms.

The music of The SHIYR Poets is pure modern folk-rock; their settings of the Psalms layered with rich vocal harmonies and rhythms. And because they like living on the artistic edge and are fascinated by the ancient poets and songwriters, they've also created a few new songs based on song fragments discovered in the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Together this group of life-long friends lead listeners on a journey through the terrain of human emotion expressing the deep spiritual longing within all of us.


Learn more about the SHIYR Poets here: www.theshiyrpoets.com

 

 









Breakout Session Speakers


 

Elizabeth Anderson

Bio | Breakout

Mental Health and Spirituality
Track: Spiritual Life

Participants in this session will hear of a real life struggle with schizophrenia including hallucinations, depression, alogia, lack of motivation and hospitalization. Registered Psychologist, Naoto Suzuki, will then help participants discover how psychological and spiritual issues often get confused. Actionable strategies and fresh perspective for nurturing the spirituality of people with mental illness will be provided.

Elizabeth Anderson has been speaking about schizophrenia since 1995. Her aim is to give her illness experience a broader meaning by giving people accurate information and dispelling the myths that are associated with people who have a mental health diagnosis. Educating and inspiring hope in audiences is Elizabeth’s favorite thing to do.

Randy Burtis

Bio | Breakout

Randy Burtis has been involved in pastoral ministry for 20 years and has worked with vulnerable individuals for over 30 years. He is currently the Children’s Grade School Pastor at Centre Street Church. Randy leads the Foster Care and Adoption Ministry at CSC and in his spare time, he is a professional illusionist.

Leading & Shepherding Disability Ministry Volunteers
Track: Ministry Tools

As followers of Christ and those who serve individuals with disabilities and their families, there are unique distinctions to our volunteer service, including who, how, and why we serve. During this workshop, participants will explore Biblical principles for serving within the five universal elements of volunteerism: recruiting, selecting, equipping, leading and developing lead volunteers.

Dr. Neil Cudney

Bio | Breakout

Dr. Neil Cudney holds BA’s in Sociology and Social Work and has a Masters of Theology and a Doctorate of Ministry. He has worked in the field of social services for over 30 years. He has also pastored in three churches. His experience working in the field and in church life, along with his academic work, gives him a holistic perspective when addressing issues relating to theology, disability, and the church.

What’s Theology Got to Do with It: A Biblical Theology of Disability Ministry
Track: Spiritual Life

How we understand God, the world, and ourselves become the theological lenses through which we encounter people who embody difference. This session will explore a redemptive vision of the human person – theology that does not view disability as ‘difference’ to be excluded but a continuum of embodied grace. Participants will discover how Scripture demonstrates that we belong with, in and through the Body of Christ.

 

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Caring for the Caregiver
Track: Community Care Giving

The journeys of families and caregivers are as unique as the presenting disabilities themselves. There are families that are walking difficult and challenging paths and need the church to come alongside in creative and ministering ways. This session will seek to provide tools for churches to explore and begin to identify strategies to come alongside and provide ministering care to families. Utilizing current research and family feedback data, participants will discover how the church can provide care to the caregiver.

Erik & Bonnie Frieburger

Bio | Breakout

Erik and Bonnie met in a group home called The 4th Dimension after being involved in separate accidents. They both became wheelchair users as a result of their spinal cord injuries. They married in 1999, and as part of ‘The Edge Movement’, Erik and Bonnie lead Expressions as a House Church. The dream is for Expressions to be a place where people can encounter, experience, and cultivate deeper relational expressions of Jesus in the midst of their daily lives.

Faith, Healing & Disability
Track: Spiritual Life

Sheldon, Erik and Bonnie have learned firsthand that bad theology can hurt people. Living with disabilities themselves, they know from personal experience what it's like to be stigmatized as ‘cursed’. They’ve heard every pious platitude explaining away their disability – a result of sin, demonic possession and lack of faith, just to name a few. Participants will come away from this session with a healthy, biblical perspective on disability – one that sees God’s good design and understands that what is disabling is not always a condition and what is most healing is not always a cure.

Friendship Ministries

Bio | Breakout

The Friendship Ministry at River Park Church is a ministry for adults with developmental disabilities ages 18+ serving the local community. It is a successful program in which each participant is matched, one-on-one, with a committed volunteer. The goals of the program are for the participants with developmental disabilities to have a safe environment in which to grow in their knowledge of God and His word, experience a sense of belonging to Christ’s body, and commit their lives to Christ.

Growing in Faith Through Friendship
Track: Ministry In Action

Friendship Ministries desire is to see individuals with developmental disabilities grow in their knowledge of God and His word, experience a sense of belonging to Christ’s Body and, as a result, commit their lives to Christ. Participants in this session will hear effective practices on how to share the good news of Jesus with friends who have developmental disabilities. Opportunity will be given to glean from the Friendship team’s experience in creating a culture of belonging and acceptance within the local church.

Jodi Graff

Bio | Breakout

Jodi is a Special Education Church Consultant. She has worked with numerous congregations to resource and support their vision of including people with disabilities into the life of the church in a vibrant and meaningful way. She pioneered the Special Needs Ministry at Centre Street Church over a period of almost 20 years. She is married to David, and has four adult children.

Living Your Calling: Participating in God’s Mission
Track: Ministry In Action

Come and hear how your congregation can empower people with developmental disabilities to discover the gifts God has given them to further Kingdom work. Inspirational examples will be shared regarding local and global ministry experiences.

 

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Thoughtful Care: Rethinking How We Provide Care to People with Disabilities
Track: Community Care Giving

Caring for another person is a huge responsibility that requires providing dignity, respectful boundaries, purpose, quality support, and heart. This workshop will provide actionable insights into these topics so participants can learn how to truly care for others well.

Fay Herrick

Bio | Breakout

Fay's involvement with the Schizophrenia Society began in 1986, shortly after her son was diagnosed with the disorder. She has worked extensively in the field of schizophrenia awareness and advocacy, serving in a wide variety of leadership roles, including representing Alberta on the National Board of Directors. She created and developed a public education program on mental illnesses called the Partnership Program, as well as three peer support programs for family members and individuals who experience mental illness.

Caring for People Who Live with Mental Illness
Track: Community Caregiving

Participants will hear first-hand as parent/caregiver, Fay Herrick, shares her lived experience caring for her son diagnosed with schizophrenia. Topics discussed will include: family dynamics pre and post-diagnosis, reaction to a loved one’s changed persona, emotional responses from family members, and acceptance of the disorder. This session will also provide practical tips for navigating government and community support systems.

Shannon Irwin

Bio | Breakout

Shannon surrendered her life to the Lord at the age of 21 while working and traveling in Australia. Since then, Shannon has had opportunity to study at BBC & U of L, and participate in Ministry around the world with BBC, the African Children’s Choir, Cross Training, Trans World Radio, and Operation Christmas Child. For the past 3 years, Shannon has enjoyed being back home in Calgary, serving with Centre Street Church as Manager of Volunteer Connections and Guest Services.

Leading & Shepherding Disability Ministry Volunteers
Track: Ministry Tools

As followers of Christ and those who serve individuals with disabilities and their families, there are unique distinctions to our volunteer service, including who, how, and why we serve. During this workshop, participants will explore Biblical principles for serving within the five universal elements of volunteerism: recruiting, selecting, equipping, leading and developing lead volunteers.

Cindy Martin

BioBreakout

Cindy is the adoptive mother of a 20-year-old son with Cerebral Palsy and a 16-year-old daughter with focus and attention issues. Cindy is a Writer/Speaker and Special Needs Advocate. She holds a BRE degree and has completed a Master’s Level Course on Disability and Suffering with Joni & Friends International. She has served on numerous local and provincial disability committees and is passionate about helping individuals and families live beyond their circumstances.

Supporting Families Through All The Seasons Of Disability
Track: Family Support

Often, much support is offered to families at the time of diagnosis and in early childhood. However, supports and resources can significantly diminish as children grow older. Families affected by disability need ongoing support. While the level of support required fluctuates and is unique to each individual and their family, there are some difficult seasons common to all. In this session, participants will learn to identify these seasons and discuss practical strategies to effectively serve families during those times.

 

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Panel Discussion: Practical Insight for Providing Meaningful Support
Track: Family Support

Have you ever wanted to help someone with a disability or support their family in some way but just didn’t know how? In this session, participants will hear from parents, siblings, and people living with a disability as they share practical ways others can provide meaningful support. Drawing from their own experiences, panel presenters will reveal simple but effective ways people can offer encouragement

Cara Milne

Bio | Breakout

Cara is the owner of M-Powered Planning Ltd, a Calgary based business that has been promoting positive and valuable roles for people with disabilities for over 12 years. Cara provides training and consulting that is innovative and practical for both agencies and families. Her positive and energetic approach supports both common sense and sustainable change.

A Place to Belong: A Daily Search for Community
Track: Ministry In Action

This interactive workshop will focus on how ministry leaders and volunteers can create an inclusive atmosphere within their support context. Conversations will include practical first steps for building genuine communities of faith. Participants will also examine how to reduce stereotypes for individuals with disabilities.

Sheldon Penner

Bio | Breakout

Sheldon is a gifted communicator who speaks to churches, youth groups and high schools, sharing his story of God’s grace. Living with cerebral palsy and a speech impairment, Sheldon doesn’t let his disability stop him from communicating an inspiring and interactive presentation with passion. Sheldon attended Caronport High School, has a Bible diploma from Christ for the Nations institute in Dallas, TX and a B.Sc. from Southwestern Assemblies of God University.

Faith, Healing & Disability
Track: Spiritual Life

Sheldon, Erik and Bonnie have learned firsthand that bad theology can hurt people. Living with disabilities themselves, they know from personal experience what it's like to be stigmatized as ‘cursed’. Participants will come away from this session with a healthy, biblical perspective on disability – one that sees God’s good design and understands that what is disabling is not always a condition and what is most healing is not always a cure.

Mark Pickup

Bio | Breakout

Mark Pickup speaks internationally promoting the sanctity, dignity and equality of all human life including the critical importance of protecting all human life from conception to natural death. Mark has lived with aggressive multiple sclerosis for over 28 years. He is triplegic and electric wheelchair dependent. Mark is the recipient of numerous awards and is also a widely published writer on bio-ethical and Christian issues.

Bio-Ethics and the Sanctity of Life
Track: Spiritual Life

This session will address the inalienable worth and natural human dignity that is the possession of every human being regardless of their state or stage in life. Participants will discover that everyone has something to bring to the table of human experience - even the most severely disabled among us, some of whom lack self-awareness. Participants will discuss the implications of this truth as it relates to current social edge of life issues.

 

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Receiving Care with Dignity
Track: Community Care Giving

Each of us will probably need care at some point in our lives. The question is, what type of care will we receive? Why is it important to know that our caregivers are committed to the natural human dignity of every life as bearers of the Image of God? This is a critically important foundation in a new Canada where assisted suicide is considered a right and many doctors and nurses are willing to participate. This workshop will explore the Christian implications of this Brave New World on giving and receiving care.

Garth Reesor

Bio | Breakout

Garth Reesor holds an MA and has served as the Executive Director of L’Arche Calgary since July of 2013. His previous experience includes pastoral work (both in Canada and at an International Church in Port-au-Prince, Haiti), teaching at a Bible College, working with persons facing homelessness and poverty, and working with individuals living with disabilities.

Face-to-Face Faith
Track: Ministry In Action

Sometimes the church focuses its programs on groups, both large and small. While people with disabilities enjoy group gatherings, another powerful way to support their spiritual journey is face-to-face engagement. This session will outline the L’Arche ministry model and address various ways participants can actively support people with disabilities in their personal faith journey.

Leanne Shannon

Bio | Breakout

Leanne Shannon, MSW, RSW is a Registered Social Worker and Family Counselor with a passion for working with families who have children with unique needs. Leanne is married to Tim and they have three children ages 18, 15 and 12; two of whom have ‘unique needs’ including ADHD, LD and ASD.

Sibling Support: Joining Them on Their Journey
Track: Family Support

This workshop will provide an overview of the unique and ever-changing experiences, outlooks, challenges, and opportunities common to siblings of people living with a disability. Participants will discuss this often overlooked family dynamic and learn about the complexities of this life-long relationship. Strategies for building understanding and connection to better support these multi-stressed families will be explored.

Naoto Suzuki

Bio | Breakout

Naoto is a registered psychologist with 12 years of clinical experience in mental health and the addictions field. He is currently attending the Providence Theological Seminary exploring the role of the church in mental health care. He enjoys the outdoors and is happy being outside in the sun or snow.

Mental Health and Spirituality
Track: Spiritual Life

Participants in this session will hear of a real life struggle with schizophrenia including hallucinations, depression, alogia, lack of motivation and hospitalization. Registered Psychologist, Naoto Suzuki, will then help participants discover how psychological and spiritual issues often get confused. Actionable strategies and fresh perspective for nurturing the spirituality of people with mental illness will be provided.

Corinne Thomas

Bio | Breakout

Corinne has spent the last 21 years in the community disability field, working with many disability-related groups and organizations in Calgary. Her most recent role is as the Senior Accreditation Coordinator for ACDS where she has been employed for 8 years. She directs a special needs handbell choir at Centre Street Church and serves as the guardian of a dependent adult. Corinne considers herself a lifelong learner, is a pharmacy technician, and has just finished a bachelor degree in Human Service Administration.

Leadership Learnings: Stories From the Trenches in Ministry
Track: Ministry Tools

In this session, ministry leaders from across Western Canada, representing churches of all sizes, will be sharing stories of success and struggle in disability ministry. A variety of presenters will share in quick, bite-size segments, providing participants with new ideas and inspiration. Attend this impactful session and learn about how people with special needs have been encouraged to learn, grow, and serve, and how congregations have been transformed in the process.

Sandra Werle

Bio | Breakout

Sandra holds a Master’s degree, in Special Education and Psychology, as well as a Diploma in Counseling Skills. Sandra is currently employed as an Educational Consultant for The Children’s Link Society, a non-profit agency that provides information and support to families of children and youth with special needs. She is also involved at Centre Street Church with many facets of their Special Needs Ministry programming. Sandra enjoys writing and has published three books.

Strategies to Involve Every Child
Track: Ministry Tools

In this practical session, participants will receive techniques and tools that will enable them to successfully include and engage all children in ministry programming. Tips for adapting activities and modifying content will be offered. Hands-on learning and handouts provided.

Mark Stephenson

Bio | Breakout

Mark Stephenson was ordained as Minister of the Word in the Christian Reformed Church (CRC) in 1989. He served as pastor of two churches before becoming Director of Disability Concerns for the CRC in 2006. He and his wife, Bev, have six living children, including their oldest, Nicole, who was born extremely prematurely and lives joyfully with severe, multiple disabilities.

The Golden Years: Ministry with People As They Age
Track: Family Support

Life keeps changing. Healthy ministry engages people throughout life, so that no one feels left out or left behind. This allows everyone to find ways that they can meaningfully serve. Most people over the age of 75 live with a disability. This workshop will address issues of aging and disability and will provide participants with practical ideas for ministry with people in the ‘fourth quarter’ of life.

 

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Getting Started: Tips and Tools to Begin Ministry with People Who Have Disabilities
Track: Ministry Tools

Some people believe that ministry with people who have disabilities is complex and expensive. Though it does require people to move outside of their comfort zones, getting started is much simpler and much less expensive than most people fear. Participants in this workshop will leave with a basic action plan outlining concrete steps their church can take as well as tools to mobilize their plan as they minister with people who have disabilities.

 

Schedule


Subject to Change

  • Friday, June 3rd
    • Registration & Coffee
    • Opening Plenary Session
    • Break
    • Break Out Session 1
    • Lunch
    • Break Out Session 2
    • Break
    • Closing Plenary Session
    • Concert (Casting Crowns & Joni Eareckson Tada)
  • Saturday, June 4th
    • Registration & Coffee
    • Opening Plenary Session
    • Break
    • Break Out Session 1
    • Lunch
    • Break Out Session 2
    • Break
    • Closing Plenary Session




Breakout Sessions

For a more detailed description of each breakout session, please click on the breakout link beside each speaker's Bio.

Friday Breakout Session 1

Getting Started: Tips and Tools to Begin Ministry with People Who Have Disabilities
Mark Stephenson

 

Supporting Families Through All The Seasons of Disability
Cindy Martin

 

Faith, Healing and Disability
Sheldon Penner and Erik & Bonnie Freiburger

 

Living Your Calling: Participating in God’s Mission
Jodi Graff

 

Caring for People Who Live with Mental Illness
Fay Herrick and Naoto Suzuki



Friday Breakout Session 2

Leading and Shepherding Disability Ministry Volunteers
Randy Burtis & Shannon Irwin

 

The Golden Years: Ministry with People As They Age
Mark Stephenson

 

Bio-Ethics and the Sanctity of Life
Mark Pickup

 

Face-To-Face Faith
Garth Reesor

 

Thoughtful Care: Rethinking How We Provide Care to People with Disabilities
Jodi Graff

Saturday Breakout Session 1

Leadership Learnings: Stories From the Trenches in Disability Ministry
Corinne Thomas and Panel

 

Sibling Support: Joining Them On Their Journey
Leanne Shannon

 

What’s Theology Got To Do With It: A Biblical Theology of Disability Ministry
Dr. Neil Cudney

 

Growing In Faith Through Friendship
Friendship Ministries

 

Receiving Care with Dignity
Mark Pickup



Saturday Breakout Session 2

Strategies to Involve Every Child
Sandra Werle

 

Practical Insights for Providing Meaningful Support
Cindy Martin and Panel

 

Mental Health and Spirituality
Elizabeth Anderson and Naoto Suzuki

 

A Place to Belong: A Daily Search for Community
Cara Milne

 

Caring for the Caregiver
Dr. Neil Cudney



Ministry Tools     Family Support    Spiritual Life     Ministry In Action     Community Care Giving    

Concert


 

An Evening of Inspiration with music by Casting Crowns and hearing from the heart of Joni Eareckson Tada.

 Friday June 3, 2016 7pm

 

Casting Crowns

CASTING CROWNS With 8.8 million albums sold to date—remains the top selling act in Christian music since 2007. The award-winning group—consisting of Mark Hall (lead singer/songwriter), Melodee DeVevo (violin, cello, vocals), Brian Scoggin (drums), Megan Garrett (piano, keyboards, vocals), Juan DeVevo (guitar, vocals), Chris Huffman (bass guitar, vocals) and Josh Mix (lead guitar, vocals)—got its start as a youth group worship band originally based in Florida. Today, each of the seven members remain active in student ministry at their respective churches in Atlanta, where Hall is serving in his 23rd year in youth ministry as student pastor at Eagle’s Landing First Baptist Church.

 

Of his own struggle with being differently abled, Marks share’s these words. “Dealing with dyslexia and ADD keeps me dependent on God. Keeps my knees on the ground and my head on straight. Instead of left brained, I'm right brained. Instead of organized and calculating, I'm a dreamer who can multitask. Dyslexia is not a learning disability. It's a learning difference. God knows what he's doing.” Building on a strong foundation forged by their self-titled major label debut in 2003 that went Double Platinum, Casting Crowns has earned some of the industry’s most prestigious accolades, including six GRAMMY nominations, winning a GRAMMY for the band’s 2005 effort, Lifesong.

 

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In addition, over the past decade, Casting Crowns has garnered 17 GMA Dove Awards, three American Music Awards and two Billboard Music Awards, among others. Most recently, the band was named Artist of the Year exclusively by fans at the 2014 K-LOVE Fan Awards. Their chart-topping songs—including “Who Am I,” “Voice of Truth,” “Praise You In This Storm,” “Until The Whole World Hears,” “Glorious Day (Living He Loved Me),” “Courageous” and “Jesus, Friend of Sinners”—have earned them nine No. 1 hits at radio and four RIAA Gold certified digital singles. Furthermore, the band has been featured by a variety of high-profile media outlets such as Billboard, Associated Press, Reuters, Rolling Stone, Atlanta-Journal Constitution, Charisma, HomeLife and CCM Magazine, among others. For more information, visit www.castingcrowns.com

 

Joni Eareckson Tada

 

Joni Eareckson Tada, the founder and Chief Executive Officer of Joni and Friends International Disability Center, is an international advocate for people with disabilities. A diving accident in 1967 left Joni Eareckson, then 17, a quadriplegic in a wheelchair, without the use of her hands. After two years of rehabilitation, she emerged with new skills and a fresh determination to help others in similar situations. During her rehabilitation, Joni spent long months learning how to paint with a brush between her teeth. Her high-detail fine art painting and prints are sought-after and collected.

 

Her best-selling autobiography, Joni, and the feature film of the same name have been translated into many languages, introducing her to people around the world. Mrs. Tada has also visited more than 47 countries, several many times.

 

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Mrs. Tada has served on the National Council on Disability and the Disability Advisory Committee to the U.S. State Department. She is Senior Associate for Disability Concerns for the Lausanne Committee for World Evangelization and serves in an advisory capacity to the American Leprosy Mission, the National Institute on Learning Disabilities, Christian Blind Mission International, as well as on the Board of Reference for the Christian Medical and Dental Society. Joni Tada currently serves on the Young Life Capernaum Board.

 

After being the first woman honored by the National Association of Evangelicals as its “Layperson of the Year” in 1986, Joni was named “Churchwoman of the Year” in 1993 by the Religious Heritage Foundation.

 

Joni has written over 50 books and numerous magazine articles. She was inducted into the Christian Booksellers’ Association’s Hall of Honor in 1995 and received the Gold Medallion Lifetime Achievement Award in 2003 from the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association.

In 2003, Joni wrote her memoir, The God I Love, chronicling a lifetime walking with Jesus. In 2011, A Place of Healing was released, recounting her journey through physical pain and addressing the question concerning prayer for healing. After battling stage 3 breast cancer in 2010, Joni wrote Diagnosed with Breast Cancer: Life after Shock, released in the fall of 2012. Joni & Ken: An Untold Love Story was released in 2013. Joni’s latest book, Beside Bethesda: 31 Days Toward Deeper Healing, released in 2014.

Beginning in 1982, she began hosting Joni and Friends a daily five-minute radio show of information and inspiration. Now four minutes in length, the program airs on more than 1,000 outlets and reaches 1 million listeners a week. Her one-minute inspirational program, Diamonds in the Dust, also airs daily on more than 800 stations nationwide. In May 2012, the Joni and Friends radio program celebrated 30 years of broadcasting.

 

Joni is host of a 30-minute television series called Joni and Friends, which highlights the stories of people enduring difficult trials while continuing to trust in God. In 2012, the TV episode “Cancer - Joni’s Journey” was released, detailing her battle against stage 3 breast cancer, including surgery and chemotherapy.

 

Joni and her husband, Ken Tada, have been married since 1982 and enjoy serving the Joni and Friends ministry together.