Highlights of a Weekend in Sydney, Australia

Sharing the stage with opera singers!

Swapping Stories

While on tour in New Zealand, Chuck Neighbors and The Reverend David Winfield share about their beginnings in theater.

One Weekend in Christchurch

Highlights of the Anglican Clergy Conference

What is a Theater Chaplain?

Those Rhetorical Questions

Encounters One of the challenges of doing one-man shows is handling “dialog” without the benefit of another actor to play against. There are tricks you learn… one being to ask a question, pause as though listening, and then respond to the imagined response of the other person (kinda like listening to one half of a conversation when someone is on the phone). It is a technique I use often in my dramas and is a great way to add some dynamic and interest to the presentation.

Obviously the question asked is rhetorical from the audience perspective… they understand you are alone and that no one is really going to respond out loud to your questions. But then again… maybe not so obvious to everyone. A few years ago I was performing “In His Steps” and as the pastor in the story addressing the “imagined” congregation I ask the question: “Do you understand what you are undertaking?” One dear elderly lady stood up and began a long explanation about her personal challenges in following Jesus. I paused let here talk for a few moments, then thanked her for her input and continued on with the story. I am sure a few people thought she was actually part of the show.

On Palm Sunday I was performing my drama “Encounters” in Flint, Michigan. One of the characters I portray is a Roman soldier who is addressing the idea that Jesus actually raised himself from the dead. He asks this “rhetorical question” to his imagined crowd: “How many of you believe this nonsense!?” There is barely a pause and a child’s voice comes loud and clear from the back of the auditorium: “I do!”

Out of the mouths of babes. Out of an audience of 800 people this child comes forth with a clear testimony of faith and belief. Some in the audience laughed and a few actually started to applaud! I love the fact that this child was fully engaged in the presentation and felt compelled to respond. Normally I would classify this as one of those moments when something “went wrong”… but in this case it just felt right! A child shall indeed lead them.

Chuck Neighbors

Going Down Under

You may have noticed an earlier post about this but I am now making it official! We have been invited to bring our ministry to both New Zealand and Australia. I am quite pleasantly surprised at the doors that are opening in both countries. I will be performing and conducting workshops at schools and churches as well as a “community performance” or two. Confirmed cities are Christchurch, NZ and in Australia we will be in Sydney and Port Macquarie. We are still booking appearances, so if you have connections in any of those places,please let me know. We would love to see if we can work out more presentations! The dates of our journey are April 18th – May 7th.

Joining me on this ministry journey will be my son, Jon. I am excited to be traveling with him. He joined me on one other trip, to Africa, but this will be his first time to travel with me as an adult. He will be documenting the trip with photos and video. So watch Facebook for updates as we go!

This trip is a bit of a faith venture for us. We are going without financial guarantees and will likely be doing some of our presentations for little or no compensation. I am happy to do that! However, the trip will be expensive and so we have decided to invite others to participate with us in supporting this mission trip. Airfare for the two of us will be about $3,000 total.

If you would like lend a hand you can send a tax-deductible gift to:
Master’s Image Productions
P.O. Box 903
Salem, OR 97308

Designate your gift: Down Under. Gifts are tax-deductible.

Even if you can’t support with dollars, we ask you to support us with your prayers. Pray for safety, that hearts will be open to the message and that opportunities will abound!

Thanks for joining us in the journey!


Chuck Neighbors

Chuck Neighbors

2009 In Review

I received this note in the offering plate on Sunday:

“Thank you! You are very good at acting. I’m 12 years old and that act of yours made me believe.”

When it comes right down to it, I can’t think of a better way to sum up what this ministry is all about. I am an actor called by God to use my gifts in service to Him. When I use my gifts as He intended, lives are changed. What an incredible blessing.

God has been so very good to this ministry. As you may recall, this year marks MIP’s 25th anniversary. Twenty-five years of traveling, performing, teaching, directing and writing. Thousands of performances, which equals multiple thousands of lives touched. I can’t help but wonder how many more would echo the words of the 12-year-old above. I am grateful. I am humbled.

2009 has been a great year and a challenging year. Great to still be doing this, in spite of the tough economy. God has seen fit to not only allow us to continue, but often at a busier pace than in some previous years. Challenging in that in doing so we had to learn to do some things differently and learn to lean on Him even more than ever. He does not disappoint
2010 looks to be a year of adventure for us. I am going with World Vision to Uganda in January. On our return I scheduled a performance in London! With the help of Board Member, Ross Collingwood, we are working on a ministry trip to New Zealand in late April. We have begun to expand our ministry in the area of video and are producing short videos that are being used in churches across the country. And we will continue to be out performing most every week, bring truth to life on the stage. In our ongoing partnership with World Vision and I am happy to tell you that to date we have been able to find sponsors for over 4,000 kids through our performances. What a blessing!

Thank you to all of you who have faithfully supported us. I know that it is not always easy. Again, I am grateful and humbled that you would support us with your prayers and finances. God has used you to continue this ministry so we can help others to “believe” through our “acts.”

So, as you reflect on your past year and look forward to 2010, we would be so very honored and blessed if you would consider a gift to Master’s Image Productions. We would be especially grateful if you could support us on a regular basis with a monthly pledge (and if you are already doing that, thank you!). Please use the enclosed card and envelope to add your support to our work. We couldn’t do what we do without the help of friends like you!

May God bless you and yours this Christmas and in 2010!

Serving the Lord dramatically,

Chuck NeighborsChuck Neighbors

Passing Notes on a Plane

Every once in awhile you get a little reminder that what you say and do can make a difference to someone. Tonight was one of those times. Many years ago I sat on a plane next to a young deaf man. We had quite a conversation writing notes to each other on our flight. A couple years later I performed at a church and this couple comes up to me, reminds me of the note writing conversation, and informs me that that young man was their son and then show me the notes I had written–saved as something special. They thanked me for being an encouragement to him. Then tonight, some 10 years later that same couple comes up to me and reminds me of that conversation again. Their son still remembers, parents still remember, this guy that encouraged their son on an airplane, they still have those notes from oh so many years ago. I am amazed!

And I am also a bit ashamed of the fact that this conversation was a rare thing for me. I typically try to avoid conversation with strangers on a plane. I stick my nose in a book or put ipod earbuds in my ears to avoid making contact with others. How many opportunities have I missed to be an encouragement, a listening ear, because I was too inwardly focused to connect with a stranger? Something to ponder….

Chuck Neighbors

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