The Strang Report Mon, 25 Jul 2016 20:17:24 -0400 Joomla! - Open Source Content Management en-gb How the Death of This Pastor's Son Sparked Personal Revival

Bishop Sam Clements leads the Church of God of Prophecy located in Cleveland, Tennessee. Recently I had the privilege of interviewing him at their International General Assembly, which was held in Orlando. I recorded two podcasts which you can listen to below.

In one, he talks about how God blessed his ministry as he pastored various leading churches in his denomination and came up through the ranks. During this time, he came to a crisis point when realized he needed to surrender to God's will instead of following his own. In a positive way, that affected the rest of his ministry.

But, also he has had to deal with extraordinary pain—mainly the loss of a son who died unexpectedly in the prime of life while Sam was pastoring. I believe that what Bishop Clements learned will minister to those who are dealing with pain in their own life.  

The second podcast gives an update on what's happening in the Church of God of Prophecy, which continues to grow, particularly internationally. Some of the church's ministers are suffering persecution in various parts of the world, and Bishop Clements gives insight on how God is using that to make the church grow.    

I asked him the question I've heard leaders ask over the years: Will the Church of God of Prophecy, founded by A.J. Tomlinson, ever merge with the Church of God (in Cleveland), also founded by Tomlinson?

I know leaders in both denominations. I know they respect each other and work together in many ways. So, I took a chance and posed the question. You'll enjoy listening to his reply. Even though he says that he doesn't see a merger in the future, he does believe that Pentecostal denominations can work together in many ways and each complement the kingdom work of the others.  

I hope you enjoy listening to these podcasts. The Charisma Podcast Network just passed one million downloads and I am grateful that my own podcast continues to grow as well. You can sign up to get the podcasts on our regular network or you can download at any time on iTunes or Google Play. It helps when you share my newsletter or the podcast on social media as we try to connect Christians and get out the word about what the Holy Spirit is doing in our day.

]]> (Steve Strang ) The Strang Report Fri, 22 Jul 2016 19:00:00 -0400
When Thousands of Pro-Trump Bikers Rolled Into Cleveland

I had the privilege of recording two podcasts with Julianne Shinto, a political analyst who called me from the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio. In the first podcast, we talked about some of the behind-the-scenes things we observed which have not been covered by the mainstream media. You will want to listen to it here.

Julianne then told me about the security issues outside the convention center and how thousands of Bikers for Trump have descended on Cleveland not only to show their support, but also to help augment security. The photo here shows a part of this huge group rolling toward Cleveland. You can listen to that podcast here.

Our Charisma Podcast Network continues to grow. Congratulations to Dr. Steve Greene, the publisher of Charisma and executive vice president of our media group. He was the visionary who launched this new venture just over a year ago.

Last week we passed a milestone—one million downloads. Besides my every-so-often Strang Report podcast, there are many interesting podcasts to download. I encourage you to subscribe to those that interest you. {eoa}

]]> (Steve Strang ) The Strang Report Thu, 21 Jul 2016 20:00:00 -0400
Exclusive Report from Republican National Convention from Maj. (Ret.) James Linzey in Cleveland

The whole country is buzzing about the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, which has nominated Donald Trump as its presidential candidate. I have endorsed Trump and I am hoping to interview him in person soon.

When I found out that Major (Ret.) James Linzey, a surrogate for Donald Trump, would be in Cleveland, I arranged to interview him for my Strang Report podcast on the Charisma Podcast Network. It was a lively discussion as he explained what a surrogate does, the enthusiasm being received for the nominee and key points to consider when voting.

This is a live report from the convention itself. I know you'll want to listen to it here.

Instead of actually writing a column as I often do, I invite you to read the commentary by Linzey that we posted on our website a couple of days ago, in which Linzey discusses foreign policy, national defense/security, Veteran's Affairs and more.

For those of you who may not be familiar with Linzey, he is the chaplain who headed up the translation team for the Modern English Version. He was also one of the first evangelicals to publicly back Donald Trump during the primaries.

Previous podcasts and columns about Trump have gone viral. I hope you like this and will share it on social media and also leave your comments. Thursday is the last day of the convention, and we will email some other interesting podcast interviews from Cleveland, so stay tuned.

Key Points to Consider This Presidential Election

By Maj. (Ret.) James Linzey, Trump Convention Surrogate

As a retired military chaplain I was an early supporter of Donald Trump. I made the long trip from California to Cleveland to be a convention surrogate for Trump to the media.  As I meet with them this week, here are the points I'm making. They are points all Americans should consider when deciding to vote this fall.


  • As Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton supported the overthrow of the democratically elected president of Syria to make room for ISIS to become an international threat.
  • Clinton's policies toppled the legitimate government in Egypt to allow the Muslim Brotherhood to take over.
  • Donald Trump will prevent the passage of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) in order to promote fair international trade agreements that would pave the way for American products to sell internationally and bring millions of jobs back to America where they belong.


  • Marine Lt. Gen. Thomas Waldhauser, who President Obama nominated to command U.S. forces in Africa, stated that the refusal to strike ISIS in Libya "makes no sense." He also stated that he knew of no overall strategy in dealing with ISIS.
  • Trump will be quick to use U.S. military might only in America's best interest, while pursuing a policy of peace and prosperity for America. His main focus in on securing America's borders, not the borders of other countries.


  • Donald Trump is committed to providing premier healthcare for American veterans to honor their service to America.
  • He is also committed to providing outstanding healthcare to women. Many have been neglected and not given access to doctors.


  • Donald Trump wants to ensure that Americans can use their health care savings account for family members under no threat of penalty.
  • He also plans to empower States to manage Medicaid within their own borders with block grants.


  • Hillary Clinton's plans for tax reform will take away jobs and lower wages across the nation.
  • Donald Trump's tax reform proposals will bring relief to over 73 million American citizens.
  • He will also propose a corporate tax cut to empower American businesses to remain in the U.S., hire more American citizens, and raise wages.


  • Donald Trump's economic policies will repair the infrastructure in America's inner cities, create jobs and increase wages. He is committed to paying the national debt, keeping America economically steady and spending no more than revenue allows.


  • Most crucial to evangelicals, Donald Trump is pro-life.


  • I believe Donald Trump was wise to select Governor Pence as his running mate due to the governor's outstanding record of job creation, fiscally conservative policies and impeccable reputation as a Christian and man of integrity. These attributes will enable him to help the GOP defeat Hillary Clinton.
  • His leadership produced the longest growth of job creation in Indiana's history. Under a Trump/Pence ticket, America will thrive economically and the U.S. Constitution will no longer be threatened.


  • One of the first states to allow the National Guard to carry firearms at recruiting stations was Indiana. This enables soldiers to defend themselves, something nearly unheard of while Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State.
  • Governor Pence is focused on creating jobs for veterans. Under his leadership, Indiana as become the second leading state in employment for veterans, up from the 31st from the top.


  • Governor Pence supports measures to makes sure existing immigrations laws are enforced, which would keep terrorists from entering our borders. He has a track record of voting for measures to make businesses hire Americans first, not foreigners.


  • Among Governor Pence's awards, he has received the following:
  • The "Taxpayers' Friend Award" by the National Taxpayers' Union
  • 100% lifetime score from National Right to Life Committee
  • "A" rating from the National Rifle Association {eoa}
]]> (Steve Strang) The Strang Report Wed, 20 Jul 2016 21:00:00 -0400
What the Future of Christian Broadcasting Should Look Like

The TBN studios in London are unlike any TBN studios I've ever ever seen. In a crowded urban setting, they are modern, sleek and impressive. Only in the lobby are there fancy classic-looking columns and gold leaves like I've seen in other TBN facilities.

The London studios were the vision of the late Paul Crouch. He invested more than $25 million in state-of-the-art studios, and this has obviously paid off. In the last year, there have been 1,200 original programs produced for the United Kingdom and Europe. In less than a year, TBN U.K.'s viewership has grown to 2.5 million in Great Britain alone.

All this has been under the impressive leadership of Leon Schoeman, who is originally from Cape Town, South Africa. Leon came out of traditional advertising and owned a broadcast design strategy company which, at the time, was rated in the top five in the country. He was involved in international television and his company launched 60 international networks of some major brands and over 100 television shows.

At the same time he and his wife, Zania Visser Schoeman, were also pastors.

God called Schoeman, TBN's U.K. channel director, into Christian television in a rather dramatic way. He woke him him in the middle of the night and impressed these words on his heart: "They are merchandising my anointing, and I am not pleased."

Schoeman told me: "I didn't know what that meant, and the picture began getting a lot clearer when I started analysing what this platform is about—what Christian television is about, what Christian content is about. The second night He told me, "change is coming to Christian television."

He soon met Matthew Crouch, the son of TBN founders Paul and Jan Crouch, and now the head of that huge organization.

"He is a visionary," Leon said of Matthew Crouch. "He and Laurie are a beautiful couple and they have a strong vision that aligns with what God has told me, and here we are in the U.K."

I met Leon at the Empowered 21 conference in London in May. He asked if he could interview me at their studios. His questions were both probing and respectful. He has a professional, easygoing manner that makes him easy to talk to.

After the interview, I interviewed him on my Strang Report podcast, which you can listen to here. Much of the rest of this newsletter has been taken from that podcast, in his own words:

"We have a pure channel here that just preaches the unadulterated Word of God. It is not polluted with anything else. It started when Dr. Paul (Crouch) answered the call of the Holy Spirit and built the facility in London.

"We believe we are called to be game changers in Christian television. Matthew Crouch, myself and a whole bunch of very bright people are working tirelessly to change the way in which we present the gospel, from a television broadcast point of view. Dr. Paul's calling was focused on access to every nation around the world. That should be our focus.

"In Mark 5, it says to take the gospel into all the world. In this next generation, for Matthew, his question is: "How do we disciple these people?" Where the previous generation focused on access, our job is to create impact. And how do we create impact? We can only impact if our product is relevant. We know that Jesus is always the product and that is the what.

"We work with the United Christian Broadcasters, and we work with a variety of television networks, Rhema TV and all these amazing television networks and we want to have a spirit of unity. We ask them what they have to offer that will complement what we do. The umbrella over that is to get the brand competitive with the major international television network brands. If you look at all these big brands like FOX, HBO and ABC, that's our competition. We need to flip between the channels, and there should be a difference from a design point of view. When people look at content—whether it is a music show, or live music broadcast, or a talk show—we need to have exactly the same quality shows. But what does that look like? That is what we're currently working on— to give Christian TV a breath of fresh air, to just breathe new creative inspiration in that amazing media of television.

"The future is not what we do, but how we bring the gospel. It needs to be the same message but in a current, relevant way so people don't have to tune out or have that weird cringe factor."

I asked Leon why he feels there is sometimes a "cringe factor."

"First of all, we need to honor to all of these great men (who pioneered in Christian television)," he says. "So many lives have come into the kingdom because of that, so many miracles were done through that, and it is all the Holy Spirit. No man can take honor and glory for that, but we have to celebrate the labor of these media generals, if you will. But we have to ask ourselves some hard questions, such as why so many people reject Christian TV and Christian media at-large.

"In certain areas, people have merchandised the anointing of God. We've allowed certain things to filter through that maybe we shouldn't have. And I am not talking any specific network—I'm talking about the wide scope of Christian television. If we were to do a complete analysis of where the root issue is, I think that, often times, we find something that works and we follow that recipe. My wife often says you shouldn't be vomited to your destiny, like what happened to Jonah. Often times we follow the same recipe and we'll get the same result from that.

"If you look at secular television, there is a lot of time spent on strategy, developing the brand and how to effectively communicate with the audience. They are engaged in strategies. We've never been good at that stuff. We've never been good at developing all those different aspects. We need to effectively market Jesus. If we want to stay in line with trends, we have got to put a strong focus on those things and change some of the financial models that are driving Christian television. We need to be smarter and more effective.

Finally I asked: "What do you expect to see in Christian media in the next few years?"

"I think platforms are going to change," Leon says. "When I speak to younger creative people (I tell them) just because you put a skateboard or a surfboard in a promo or in a brand doesn't mean that all of sudden you're going to speak to a new market.

"We must be relevant and we need to let youth speak to youth, and peer groups speak to peer groups. We need to be absolutely relevant and feel the pulse of what's going on. We need to get the right people and not a bunch of gray-haired men sitting around a board room deciding what the next youth trend is within youth media. We need to speak to people where they are. We need to speak to people from the right platform in the right way.

"We need to activate Christians. We just can't broadcast to them, we need to activate them to disciple people in their area. We can only do that if we speak to from the right platform in the right way."

]]> (Steve Strang ) The Strang Report Wed, 13 Jul 2016 18:00:00 -0400
These Racial Divides are Principalities and Powers We Must Battle in the Spirit

When a young black teen, Trayvon Martin, was shot and killed in Sanford, Florida, only two miles from my office, our community fell into turmoil. The black community felt that the man who shot Trayvon was being let off because he was white (earlier it was determined that he acted in self-defense, then charges were brought and a jury eventually acquitted him). I saw up close and personal the deep hurt in the black community over this perceived injustice.

I also saw what happens when the Christian community takes a spiritual stand and intervenes.

All this preceded incidents that have since happened in Ferguson, Missouri, Baltimore, Cleveland, and then, tragically, what happened this week in Louisiana and Minnesota.

And now, as everyone should be aware, a sniper shot and killed five policemen who were overseeing a peaceful demonstration expressing concern about the two shootings this week. Seven other policemen were injured, as well as two civilians. Early this morning, our Charisma News service posted two very meaningful commentaries by Michael Brown and Alveda King. However, other Christian leaders are speaking out.

Here is a synopsis of a few:

Evangelist Alveda King – "My Uncle Martin Luther King Jr. said in his 1967 Christmas message: 'When we truly believe in the sacredness of human personality, we won't exploit people, we won't trample over people with the iron feet of oppression, we won't kill anybody.' As many of my friends weigh in on the unfolding issues and death counts in Louisiana, Minnesota and now Dallas, I'm encouraging everyone to step back from violence, reach out to Heaven in prayer, and act to break every chain." Read Alveda King's entire commentary here.

Dr. Michael Brown, radio host and author, Charlotte, North Carolina – "Americans, we must come together and declare that 'All Lives Matter,' regardless of color, ethnicity or social status. Every life is precious in God's sight and must therefore be precious in our sight as well. Together, we must condemn all acts of cold-blooded murder. If a police officer with malice aforethought kills someone with no possible just cause, he or she must be found guilty of murder, regardless of his badge and uniform. And when it comes to the sniper killings in Dallas, no civil-minded person can possibly condone the targeted, intentional, planned murder of other human beings, no matter what animosity they hold towards officers of the law." Read Dr. Brown's entire commentary here.

Tony Evans, Senior Pastor, Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship, Dallas, Texas – "Gone must be the days of only pointing fingers at others to fix what they may never fix. Our nation's ills are not merely the result of corruption or racism, although these are evil. Our troubles can also be traced directly to ineffective Christians. One of the real tragedies today is that the church as a whole has failed to advance God's kingdom light, equity, love and principles in our land in order to be a positive influence and impact for good in the midst of darkness, fear and hate. We must do better. We must unite. We must stand together and commit to one another that we will usher in a wave of change, justice, life, safety, rightness, equity and dignity for all. And above all, we must not let fear nor hatred divide us. Peace, unity, love and non-violence should be our rallying cry and the catalyst for change in our nation. 

Bishop Jim Lowe, Birmingham, Alabama – "Everybody is crying out for justice. Have we forgotten? Justice is defined and demanded by God! When will we learn, we will never experience justice as long as we seek it outside of His ways and without His guidance? Take comfort and let the word go forth. Justice will be done! Almighty God will exact justice on all of those who shed innocent blood. Black or White, no matter religious preference, or privilege each will experience the full wrath of God. God has no love for those that shed innocent blood."

Darrel deVille, – "With a heavy heart I am compelled to say. Last night's tragic news in Dallas is a bitter foretaste of what God has been warning our nation and His people about. Greater civil unrest, calamity, chaos, lawlessness, blood and war in the streets is the path our nation is on because of the rejection of God, perversion, greed, corruption, and flood of blood of the unborn. This is WHY God is saying: 'You cannot just promise them a Great Awakening, I need you to warn them for Me. They need to understand what's coming if they do not listen to Me. You must do it with a sense of urgency, like a state of emergency!"

Ryan Bomberger, Chief Executive Officer, The Radiance Foundation – "Every agonizing death is one too many. Last night I heard from those who've lost loved ones to senseless violence, which were mostly the result of black-on-black crime. Yes. Black homicide victims' biggest threat is not those in blue, but those with black skin. Of the 3,021 blacks murdered (single victim/single offender), 90 percent of the murderers were black. In a shocking episode of rhetoric-turned-reality, four cops were assassinated in Dallas because the "pigs in a blanket, fry 'em like bacon" BLM crowd and liberal news media waged their war. Now, they must own the casualties. This isn't the first time cops have been targeted and killed by BLM rhetoric and gun violence." For Ryan's entire article, read here.

Fighting Powers and Principalities

We abhor the violence. We don't condone police brutality in any way. Yet, we also support the police and we are deeply saddened about this escalation from peaceful protest to these savage murders.

As Christians, we must take authority and pray over the principalities and powers that are at work in our nation, in the lives of those who are calling for violence or who are perpetuating violence. We saw in Sanford that we could come to a peaceful outcome when we took authority in the spiritual realm.

Secular people don't understand this, but those of us who believe the Word of God know that "our fight is not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, and against spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places." (Eph. 6:12, MEV). {eoa} 

]]> (Steve Strang ) The Strang Report Fri, 08 Jul 2016 21:00:00 -0400
What Really Matters

When I first met Minneapolis, Minnesota native Dennis Doyle, he was already a successful businessman in real estate with huge holdings in the Twin Cities and beyond. Over the years Dennis had been involved in various charitable giving and was beginning his journey of building "Hope for the City," a charity leveraging corporate surplus to elevate healthcare access in some of the most broken corners of the world.

I was immediately impressed with the innovative concept of Hope for the City. The Doyles had an extensive list of contacts in the Twin Cities and maximized on the corporate surplus from companies like Target, General Mills and others. Doyle was in the real-estate business and housed the equipment in his underutilized warehouse space for global distribution to those who needed it the most. With these key pieces in play, Hope for the City would be able to move massive amounts of food and corporate surplus for both local and global distribution with a small overhead.

As time passed, Hope for the City grew, distributing used medical and dental equipment that was being replaced with newer models, but was still functioning. Equipment like this could greatly improve the level of healthcare in places like Africa, where they have almost no access to healthcare.

Over the years, the ministry has evolved and we have written a couple of short articles about Hope for the City and the Doyles. But recently, Hope for the City (now called "MATTER") has made such huge strides forward, I decided it was time for an update.

Recently when I was in Minnesota, I visited with Dennis and his vivacious wife Megan in their home about this important and exciting ministry. My interviews ran as two podcasts. You can hear Megan's today. We will post Dennis' podcast tomorrow on the Charisma Podcast Network.

As you listen, you can hear in the passion for their ministry and it is evident their hearts are as big as the state in which they live. The Doyles had been blessed with the resources to give financially to nearly 40 non-profit organizations each year. Yet, they still felt they could do more. "We wanted to know from God what we could do to be really serious about our giving," Dennis said.

Seeing corporate surplus as an opportunity and not as a problem, the Doyles started Hope for the City in Eden Prairie, Minnesota, outside of Minneapolis, in 2000. It soon became their calling to get material resources that still had value, but were otherwise going to waste, into the hands of people that would benefit, specifically people living in scarcity.

"We basically had two international programs where we would ship things overseas, primarily gently-used medical equipment," Megan says. "Then we had a program where we worked with food shelves, and we were just the middle man to divide the food up and distribute it to food shelves. That was it in a nutshell."

From 2000 to 2014, the organization helped distribute more than $550 million in wholesale goods to people in need all over the world. In 2014, Hope for the City evolved into MATTER, with a focus on expanding access to health, next door and around the world. In 2015, MATTER gave away more than $27 million of surplus, with an operating budget of $1.2 million.

A couple of years ago, it became apparent to the Doyle's that, in order to reach the younger generation donors, they would need to rebrand their ministry. The one-word ministry title they came up with was MATTER.

"We felt like the up-and-coming 20-somethings and 30-somethings would be more attracted to MATTER," Megan says. "It's what that generation understands. We wanted people to understand what we do, everything from serving the poor in our own backyard with food to helping furnish hospitals overseas. It makes sense because the whole supply chain matters. The donor is interested in who the recipient is at the end of the line, and the recipient wants to know who the donor is. The volunteers MATTER, and the staff MATTER."

One of their innovations was creating the MATTERbox: A Healthy Box of Food.  Ever conscious of being good stewards of the ministry God has given them, the Doyles and their staff began two years ago to review its food program to provide healthier meals to help combat one of the biggest problems facing America today—obesity. Working with dietitians at a prominent local hospital in the Twin Cities, MATTER developed a breakfast, lunch and dinner portable healthy food program called the MATTERbox, which Megan says is "self-stable and highly nutritious."

The MATTERboxes contain a starch, a protein, a fruit and a vegetable to provide well-rounded and nutritious meals. These healthy food boxes benefit recipients who might not otherwise be educated on how to eat properly and to avoid diabetes, among other major health problem in America.

"The beauty of the MATTERbox is that it's healthy and it creates access to healthy food for people living beneath the poverty level and who are food insecure," Megan says. "We even now have the diabetes departments in various hospitals using our boxes to teach people how to eat properly and to get off of insulin. Obesity and diabetes are America's diseases of the future, and that's why we're trying to do our part to fight them."

"We're a little bit ahead of the industry in developing these MATTERboxes that give people access to healthy food. And we're dealing with non-traditional partners. A food shelf would not be interested in our MATTERboxes. The people that are using them are hospitals, especially if they have a large portion of people below the poverty line that they are serving. Charter schools are using our meals. Progressive churches are using them. The Hennepin County (Minnesota) Sheriff's department is putting them in all of the deputies' cars because they deal so often with evictions and people moving and there is no food in the cupboards. Insurance companies are also on board with the boxes. It's a great thing." Megan says the results of their health-conscious efforts are tangible.

"We're working closely with Hennepin County Medical Center with their diabetes program," she says. "They are not only teaching people how to eat healthier with our MATTERboxes, but they are telling us that they have patients that are getting off of insulin. That is one of the goals, praise God."

The MATTERbox is slowly being introduced in other states, such as Arizona, where the Doyles spent the entire month of February earlier this year. "We talked to the head of the Diabetes Association in Arizona, and they told us about a group of Native Americans who have resigned themselves to the fact that they're going to die early because of diabetes," Megan says. "This doesn't have to be. With simple life changes and access to the right food, they can change the lifespans of their whole group of people."

It might surprise many to know that Gene Simmons of the secular rock band KISS, who has befriended the Doyles in recent years, is one of the biggest supporters of MATTER. After meeting in California through a mutual friend, Dennis began talking to Simmons about MATTER, and Simmons, who grew up with a Jewish background, was all in.

A successful entrepreneur in addition to his musical exploits, Simmons regularly speaks with MATTER's financial donors, and himself holds an annual fundraiser for MATTER in Los Angeles called The Children MATTER. Later this year, Simmons and his band mates will hold a concert that he and the Doyles hope will raise more than $1 million for MATTER.

If you want to go to an exclusive event in the Twin Cities and have lots of money to give to a worthy cause, you can purchase tickets for the event here.

"Many people see Gene as simply as musician. He's much more than that," Megan says. "He's a college-educated school teacher who learned to play the guitar. But he understood the value of marketing, and that's how KISS was so successful. He's a brilliant marketer and manufacturer, and he's been a huge help with MATTER."

If you read this far you're obviously interested in the Doyles' ministry. But what's the take away for your life? It's to ask what resources you have within your own two hands and how God can multiply it to help others! In the same way Dennis and Megan Doyle are an inspiration and example to many of how you can leverage the resources around you to create a world where we all MATTER.

To find out more about the Doyles and MATTER, please visit, or email Megan

]]> (Steve Strang ) The Strang Report Wed, 06 Jul 2016 21:00:00 -0400
Prominent Hispanic Christian Leader Calls Immigration Reform 'a Spiritual Issue'

Last Thursday, the Supreme Court handed President Obama a defeat with his immigration policy. But what does that mean? Immigration has become a huge issue in America. I was glad to receive a visit Monday by Rev. Tony Suarez, executive vice president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Council.  

I have the privilege of serving on the board of that great organization, led by my long-time friend Sam Rodriguez. I wanted to understand the issues. As a 10th-generation American, it's hard for me to identify with new immigrants. I believe the influx of Hispanics into this country has brought many wonderful changes. Many are Pentecostals and most are favorable toward traditional family values when they seem to be eroding in the culture at large.

At the same time, I publish books in Spanish and about 1 in 4 four of my staff are Hispanic (all of them legal, I might add). So, it's important to me to really understand these issues and to know how the church should respond.

Like his mentor Sam Rodriguez, Tony is very articulate and I took him into the podcast studio to interview him. I asked him to help me understand exactly what it was that the Supreme Court turned down.

According to Tony, President Obama expanded a program called DACA he implemented through executive order a few years ago that didn't grant amnesty, but "deferred" deporting illegals. The Supreme Court basically said he had overstepped his authority and that Congress should set these policies.

Tony says that when Congress did not pass Immigration Reform in 2013 (after they promised that they would do it), they could not come to an agreement by executive action.

"President Obama expanded DACA to include more children and then he also had what's called DAPA, which is the Deferred Action for Parents," he said. "That, more than the children, is what became very controversial. It would not have helped all 11 to 14 million undocumented immigrants, but what he did would have helped about 5 to 6 million people.

"The key word in all of this though that I think is forgotten is that it was deferred. It was a band aid—it was a temporary solution—but it was never the end-all solution. So personally, when I hear people refer to it as amnesty, I've never taken it that way. We have to have a legislative solution to the problem and I still say, respectfully, that the President's action was caused by Congress' inaction."  

Had Congress taken care of this with a legislative solution, Tony believes President Obama would never have felt forced to issue any kind of executive action when it comes to immigration.

"It was never an amnesty. Personally, I have a problem with the word amnesty," Tony told me. "To me, amnesty means something for nothing, and what Obama did was never an amnesty—it was a deferment. This is one of the reasons why Hispanics or anyone that qualified for the program always was cautious because what it essentially meant was, 'I won't deport you today—I'll just defer it to another day.'"  

Rev. Suarez made sure I understood that he doesn't condone illegal methods of crossing the border. His father came from Colombia and he immigrated legally after marrying Rev. Suarez's mother, a missionary of Irish descent from Chicago.

But today, Rev. Suarez pastors a Hispanic church in Virginia Beach, Virginia, where 67 percent of immigrants are undocumented.

"It wasn't by our choice, that's not what we were targeting, that's who God brought to us," Suarez said. "In fact, to be honest with you, I was frustrated. I didn't know how to build a church. (With) 67 percent undocumented immigrants, the median income was $9 per hour. How do you build a church? I felt like the Lord spoke to my heart and He said, 'I am the Lord of the harvest.' He said, 'I gave you this field to work with and cultivate,' and so we worked amongst these people."  

Since I know that the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference has been a real leader in immigration reform, I asked Rev. Suarez how the church can help solve this very serious problem in our society.

He said polls show that over 60 percent of all evangelicals believe there needs to be immigration reform.  

"What I would ask believers to do is not believe all the rhetoric," he said. "One of the biggest issues we have today is rhetoric. You can't believe all of the rhetoric. We're not advocating amnesty. We're talking about securing the borders, bringing people out of the shadows so that they pass a background check, that they pay a fine or that they begin to pay taxes. Imagine what that would do to our economy. Imagine what it would mean if hundreds of thousands of people all of a sudden start paying taxes. It would be a boost for our economy."

Rev. Suarez closed by making these points:

  • "I would ask believers to remember the side of humanity that's here. Put a human face to it and realize that you probably know someone and more than likely you worship with someone who's undocumented. You just don't know it. It's not just a Latino problem. There's over 10,000 Irish immigrants along the east coast that are fighting for immigration reform. Remember that it's for our Asian community, our Hispanic brethren and our African immigrant brethren that are here, and so put a human face to it.
  • "If one of these fanatical approaches were to take place and you deported 14 million people, you would virtually close every Hispanic church in the United States.
  • "I personally think that immigration reform is a spiritual issue. I think the enemy knows the revival in this country; it's a multi-cultural revival. It's coming through the immigrant community. It's spiritual. We sowed seeds. We sowed a seed of revival around the world. We sent missionaries to Asia, to Africa, to South America and we saw great revival. But as I understand the law of sowing and reaping, where you sow that seed, you're also going to reap a harvest. Look at how God has confirmed that word because we're having a multi-cultural revival here in the United States.  
  • "The enemy is aware of where the revival is coming from and he's doing everything he can to squash it, to stop it. I do believe the enemy is behind any plan to deport 11 to 14 million people. He would close immigrant churches throughout the country. He would love it! He would love to squash the revival. So I think it's a spiritual issue, but I believe God's going to help us but at the end of the day, Congress has to act. Not the White House and not the Supreme Court. We need Congress to act and represent the people." {eoa}
]]> (Steve Strang ) The Strang Report Tue, 28 Jun 2016 21:30:00 -0400
How Britain's Exit From the EU Could Foreshadow America's Future

In the journalism business, they call this a "big news day."

First the Supreme Court rejected President Obama's disastrous immigration plan, which I'll opine about next week.

Then we awoke Friday to a huge decision by Great Britain to leave the European Union by a vote of 52-48 percent.

Most of us on this side of the pond don't really understand the issues. But it seems the same frustration with liberal governmental policies that have given rise to Donald Trump's candidacy also gave rise to this historical decision for Great Britain to go it alone without the rest of Europe.

It's like my English friend, Pastor Steven Halford (who I wrote about in the "Tent on the Green" on Pentecost Sunday) wrote me on Facebook: "We're out! I can't believe it! This is a great day for us!"

When I was in England last month, everyone was talking about it. But then it was too close to call. Even last night it looked as if Great Britain would stay in and I started emailing with my friend, Martin Clarke, a wise English businessman I wrote about last week in The Strang Report.

He sent me a humorous poem I copied for your enjoyment below. He's a great writer and I posted it last night on my Facebook page.

This morning when I woke up to his analysis, which I find so insightful and so very "English," I got permission to quote it here. Obviously he's happy with the decision.

"Starbucks doors remain open, people are going to work and Wales plays Northern Ireland tomorrow in the Euro soccer. The politicians are not at Heathrow and our Canadian Bank Governor has £250b in his wallet to give to the Banks. The pound fell off the cliff of Dover, but clung to a branch and is scrambling back up the chalk.

"Barclays Bank shares dropped 30%, but if you bank with them, then you understand, while Bovis Homes fell 50%, and, if you ever lived in one then ... The reality is that the computer has been rebooted, it's back to a real economy, a free market and the majority has spoken.

"Business as usual, life being repriced as I write. Time for a coffee—Starbucks? Well, they still won't be paying tax."

While my wife was reading the news about Brexit (short for "Britain Exits the EU") on her smartphone, I was getting my news from straight from Martin! And this was before I decided to write this commentary. "What does it mean?" I asked him.

Martin replied: "The decision today by 52/48 majority (yes very marginal) is to leave the economic and political Union of Europe that we joined circa 40 years ago.

"We never adopted the currency and, in real terms, we have taken our country fully back and away from the legislative governance of politicians in Brussels.

"The change will come into effect in two years time and, in the interim, anything can happen. Many consider that the world ends as we know it today and, in one sense that is true. But there is still a nation of 65 million on an island looking to live life to the full.

"Northern Ireland and Scotland voted to remain, though Wales sang the new song to leave. Our Prime Minister, David Cameron, has resigned and George Osborne, our Chancellor, will follow. We expect Boris Johnson to be our next Prime Minister and Michael Gove our next Chancellor with the ever Euro-bashing Nick Farage playing a role.

"The stock markets have fallen, as has the currency of our pound," Martin wrote. "Today, I sense that we shall become the Hong Kong of Europe and that once the dust settles a new era will dawn, as it did so over Hong Kong in 1997.

"We will need Visas to enter Europe and the Europeans will need Visas to visit us here. There will be many other changes, but as we did in the beginning and mid-20th century, we will embrace the change. Churchill and Thatcher celebrate today, and in the words of the First Duke of Wellington, 'it was a very close d*** thing.'"

Martin concluded as only an Englishman can: "God save The Queen."

I hope you found Martin's analysis as interesting as I did. I'll close by sharing his original poem written when the outcome was still unclear. Notice how he works in comments about America. Enjoy:

Do we leave or do we remain
Life will never be the same
Do we remain or do we leave
What has fate up its sleeve

Pound or euro what's the note
Treasury shrinks, or Treasuries bloat
NHS our biggest employer
If we leave do we destroy her

Dole queues line immigrants flock
Into this island ever loaded rock
Or do we leave and build a wall
Either way a very close call

Churchill, Thatcher turn in their grave
Do we stay as Europe's slave
Or do we remain not shake the boat
Chancellor's economy stays afloat.

America will trade with us back of the queue
Revenge for Boston trouble in lieu
Must we really pay that price and bump
A euro victim Pharaoh, Donald Trump.

Soon we will know the Brexit end
In or out stay fixed or mend
Bonjour, Hello our Euro friends
A New England or is this the end ? {eoa}

]]> (Steve Strang ) The Strang Report Fri, 24 Jun 2016 16:50:00 -0400
A Spiritual Perspective on How the Brexit Vote Was Britain's Independence Day

I had paid no attention to the term "Brexit" until I visited England in May and everyone was talking about it. It's short for Britain Exit, and as you know, that nation voted 52-48 percent to leave the European Union.

My friend Steven Halford, who pastors a charismatic church on the south coast of England, feels so passionately about this that he calls it Britain's Independence Day. As we celebrate our own Independence from England 240 years ago this weekend, I believe you will find his analysis interesting. You may also want to listen to my podcast with him—which took place weeks before this historic vote—on what is happening spiritually in the Mother country.

I invited Steven to write a commentary for our website from his perspective as a spiritual leader. I liked it so much I'm using it as a guest editorial in my newsletter today. I've done this only a few times before. If you enjoy it, share it on social media with your friends. He believes God's hand was in this vote. It can encourage those of us who pray God will turn the tide from secularism in our nation as well.

'We Are Seeing This Tower of Babel Fall'

By Steven Halford

On Thursday, June 23, I went to bed in Portsmouth, England, not knowing what the next day had in store. Earlier I had voted for my beloved England to exit the European Union. I believed without a shadow of a doubt that my side had lost.

I watched the results from Gibraltar roll in and knew the rest of the country had been swayed by the very strong "Remain" campaign. I asked God for peace and for His will to be done before drifting off to sleep. As a pastor, I knew there was a spiritual aspect to this controversy.

I started thinking how unhelpful the Remain campaign had been, calling those who wanted to leave "hate mongers," "xenophobes," "racists" and even "homophobic." I'm not sure why the last one was relevant, but I've been called all those names (and worse). We didn't hate anybody; we just wanted self-rule again. We voted to leave the EU. We did not vote for those inside the EU to leave Britain.

On Friday, June 24, I awoke to my wife: "Steven, We're out! The U.K. has voted to leave." I couldn't believe my ears. Scrambling to find my laptop, I watched the news in utter disbelief.

My desire, dreams and prayers had been answered. We were now free. Our Independence Day had come. We were now free to make agreements, or no agreements, with whomever we chose. We could make laws that better reflect our nation. We can pave a way forward that the forerunners of this once-beautiful, once-Christian nation had known and dreamed of. Such news!

We became a sovereign nation once more. We severed ties to the godless and secularist EU.

We haven't left Europe (you can't leave a continent), but we did indeed choose to leave the European Union. An amazing 52 percent (17 million) people voted to leave. We had a 4 percent majority and over a million votes that made the difference. Brexit (Britain exit) had won!

In my opinion, this is the single greatest act of democracy in the U.K. in my lifetime.

This act will forever change the way we conduct our affairs, both nationally and internationally. Many of us feel that God ordained this. We don't know why, but we do know He has a purpose for us still. It's like a supernatural wave of His presence has engulfed us again, and even the heavens are taking note.

During the campaign, a few church leaders told me they were voting to leave but were afraid to say anything for fear of being ostracized by peers. I've heard the sentiment, "We just feel like it's wrong. That there is an underlying demonic agenda. We can't intellectually put our finger on it, but we just feel like it's wrong."

Personally, I felt as if I would be disobeying God by choosing to remain. I know there are a lot of fears out there for the future. I have a disabled daughter. What if the U.K. could no longer afford to pay for her care? What if a wheelchair was no longer covered under our National Health Service due to the fears being actualized? We'd be done for!

But I knew within myself, as so many others have said since the vote, that they felt the same way. We were "quickened" to act, regardless of what our carnal minds were telling us.

In the past few weeks, we have seen more rain in the month of June than at almost any time in our history.

1 Corinthians 15:46 says, "However, that which is spiritual is not first, but the natural, and then the spiritual." As it's been raining in the natural, God has been raining in the spiritual. A downpour of His presence that will cover the land with the deep cleansing washing of His Spirit and Word. Even if believers didn't feel that voting to leave was God's will, we can mostly agree that God is moving and blowing on our once-great land again.

And as people from my church and the local churches were praying at dusk on the eve of the Brexit vote, they all blew their shofars to signal the clarion call for God's people to gather, pray and act. The moment they blew the shofars, lightning filled the skies and thunder sounded out. These were people who prayed for God's will but secretly knew what that will was. It's almost like the Father thundered from heaven that He had heard our prayers and was ready to answer.

We have now severed the ties that bind by allowing us to become the nation we once were—God-fearing, Bible-believing, repentant sinners saved by the blood of the lamb, Jesus Christ. This is very optimistic, I know, but prophetically speaking, this is what many of us hear. Sever the secular ties to Europe, get on your knees, pray like Russia is about to invade and preach like Jesus is coming back today.

We church leaders are quite divided in the U.K. There's been a huge silence from national leaders on this issue of Brexit, possibly for fear of offending the many nations we find in our churches. There is a spiritual heaviness and break down in our Christian heritage in the past 40 years of being a member of the EU.

Neo-charismatics within the U.K. have mostly seen the need to escape the throes of a culture of rules and regulations that are intended to strangle the life out of the church.

I believe the EU is tantamount to the tower of Babel—a place where we have one voice and one purpose, without borders where we can ascend our man-made tower to reach the heavens and become god to the people—where power is our religion.

This past week, we took back our power. We saw the need for borders—for national laws to govern people who have a rich heritage in biblical principles—and we are seeing this tower of Babel fall slowly but surely to the ground, causing those within the EU to scatter and seek refuge again within the people who made their own nations great.

I believe the EU is a denizen of godlessness, where politics has replaced God. It's where Stalin left a fingerprint of communism, and socialism left enough influence in its violent past to finally infiltrate every level of European society, including the church.

We lost sight of the main goal of the church, which is to seek and save the lost, to introduce people to Jesus. Those who don't have a heart for God have become overcome with fear. And those of us who don't have this fear know we can go it alone as a nation, trusting God will lead us and even provide for us.

The nations have opened in a new, broader way, and those without fear can lead the way into this new mission field.

The Word says, "God has NOT given us the spirit of fear. But of power, and love, and self control" (2 Tim 1:7). Fear is a spirit, and those who fear this new future are partaking of this spirit.

I, for one, welcome this new future, the unknown. So do many fellow church leaders. We have lived in fear for a generation. For 40 years since our parents voted to join what was then called the EEC, we have slowly but surely lost our identity. Well, June 23, 2016, we started the process to get that identity back.

We pray the Lord will look favorably upon us again, with the Queen—a Bible-believing Christian—as our Head of State and her God-fearing government, and we pray He will deliver us from the European secularists who have caused so much division within our beloved nation.

Thank you, America, for your kind words to and about my nation. It needs help. It needs voices. It needs courage and deliverers to save it from the darkness it has found itself in.

May the Holy Spirit sweep across our land as we find the freedom we need to govern ourselves, free from secularist oppression.

As a gifted speaker and anointed motivator, Steven Halford strengthens churches in the U.K., USA and the developing world with an evangelistic ministry marked by revival fire. He also leads a congregation at home on the south coast of England called Living Word Church Lee in Lee-on-the-Solent.

]]> (Steve Strang ) The Strang Report Fri, 01 Jul 2016 19:00:00 -0400
A Powerful Word for America Comes From Across the Pond

"The patient is sick and the pulse has slowed as we reflect on the tragedy of the weekend. The worst in U.S. history and even more questions than ever. The nation is sick and we need to find a remedy fast. Unless we do, this will happen again and again."

These powerful words make me pause and think in the aftermath of the Orlando Massacre last Sunday. They came to me from England in a personal email from an important businessman I've gotten to know in the past year. His name is Martin Clarke, and I felt I needed to share them with you here.

"We need to get to the root of the problem and find lasting solutions, otherwise the patient will die," he continued. "Our land needs healing this morning and our leaders need support. The culprit was born and educated in America, but left the flock only to return to kill. We can pray, but we also need to bring a much needed change before the patient dies."

The Scottish poet Robert Burns said: "Oh would some power the gift to give us to see ourselves as others see us." So let's learn what this Englishman can teach us about the sad state of our nation.

Martin was writing after reading my last Strang Report in which I mentioned seeing all the satellite trucks on Orange Avenue outside the Pulse nightclub where 49 innocent people lost their lives at the hands of a radical Islamic jihadi who pledged his allegiance to ISIS.

"The springing up of media with satellite dishes everywhere paints a picture of a sick world where there is no real concern for the dead only spectator interest like parasites or vultures. I find this 'tell me how they died' reporting as bad as the crime," he wrote.

"The massive irony for the Brit is how can America be so surprised when the gun law/lobby has total free reign. Madness seems to reign in this highly matured sophisticated western civilisation of America or is it just a modern Wild West with wagon trains, cowboys and more cowboys. America seems to have legalised 'insanity,' yet the litigation and penal codes seem horrifically hard.

"Lastly the culture of vigil across the States seems almost pathetic. It's happened before and it's going to happen again. Someone out there now wants to beat 49 and yes it's a very sad/tragic label, what you will, but for me the real tragedy is that I know it's going to happen again!"

Sadly, I believe he's right.

"Christian leaders are part of the problem. The naked cowboy has shocked many here in U.K., and Mr. Trump has had his platform raised two notches as his new Muslim policy now cries out, 'I told you so.' To happen in the month and first week of Ramadan is significant and dangerous, Clarke continued.

In another email he sent me a link from the British press saying the stock of gun companies in America had gone up after this massacre.

He added this comment: "As the share/stock price of the gun makers of America rise so do the share/stock price of the undertakers. From Shoot Hill to Boot Hill, profit will always find root in the American Dream that for some is the American nightmare."

The Clarkes

In my work, I meet some very interesting people. Two of the most interesting I've met in a long time are Martin and his charming wife, Shaneen. In London, they would be considered a "power couple."

When I was in London in May for the dedication of the Modern English Version to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, I spent a lot of time with the Clarkes, and I also interviewed Martin and Shaneen in two separate podcasts. You can listen to them telling their stories in their own words.

Although they are not widely known in the United States, the Clarkes each have a powerful testimony I believe will inspire many.

In one of my frequent emails to Martin, I mentioned that I planned to refer to them as a "power couple." His reply shows his humility and gives insight into his personality and why I've come to admire him so much.

"We really are not so much a 'power couple' and your readers will, I'm sure, want to know that there are many married couples across the world like us who with God in the centre of our lives are harnessed in that triple cord!" he wrote.

"We love our country, our heritage, but most of all God. Shaneen centres her importance in ministry on family and is a brilliant wife and mother. Like any couple, we are not perfect and together we 'have a go' or 'get things done.' Though at times we fail, we keep going."

Nevertheless, they are a "power couple," so well connected through the business and Christian communities that they were able to help us present a special edition of the Modern English Version to the dean of Windsor on behalf of Her Majesty the Queen.

One of their important connections is Col. David Waddell, who knew the dean of Windsor and who made the connection. Martin called the MEV dedication to the queen a "highly significant occasion."

"In four years, we will celebrate the 400th anniversary of the Mayflower, where the people aboard proudly brought the Word of God to America," Martin said. "And now we are proud that you have brought it back to us. This is a year that is significant, and it's no accident that you are here and that we did what we did with the MEV."

In London, Col. Waddell invited me to his nice club in Chelsea, where I interviewed him for a podcast on my Strang Report. It's worth listening to this proper English gentleman describe the process we went through for the dedication of the MEV a few days before the interview!

Martin Clarke is a very successful real estate businessman in London. Shaneen is a native of London of Indian descent who is on fire for God and who is a catalyst for Martin's tenacity for God.

The Clarkes are both active members of Holy Trinity Brompton near their home in London. They have attended there many years. It is one of the most influential churches in that country and in the world, mainly through its Alpha Program. I had the opportunity to visit the service with them while I was in London.

Martin was instrumental in saving the plight of the Royal Air Force Museum in Hendon. His financial contribution in moving the Grahame White Aircraft Hangar allowed for the new museum to be built. He first met Prince Charles in 1989 through the Kings Cross Development Project.

Meanwhile, Shaneen travels the world ministering. When I was there, she had just gotten back from a trip to Norway and Switzerland, She has ministered in the United States, appeared on The 700 Club and has become friends with very influential people like Benny Hinn, Marcus Lamb and others. She has a winsome personality and smile. She ministers powerfully in the Holy Spirit and people are touched.

Her background is fascinating, having come from a family of Hindu faith. As a very curious teenager, Shaneen said she was "zapped" by the Holy Spirit at 14, and eventually many in her family became Christians. It was around that time she joined a local Assemblies of God church where her pastor gave her a copy of Jamie Buckingham's book, Daughter of Destiny, about Kathryn Kuhlman. The book inspired her to pray for a heaven-sent anointing on her life.

Despite her plans to move to the U.S. and attend Rhema Bible College, Shaneen's father demanded that she marry at 17. After 10 years of a verbally abusive marriage, she divorced, and it was by a divine appointment of viewing evangelist Steve Hill's television program that her spiritual life was restored. Hill prophesied that there was a "divorced woman in England whom God is going to resurrect the call on your life."

At that very moment, Shaneen said she felt fire go through her body, and she repented and returned to the call of God on her life.

"I'm so grateful because God resurrected a dead dream in my life," Shaneen said. "Once you have a call on your life, God will never give up on you no matter what's happening with you. He will reach you. He will get to you."

Since then, Shaneen has written a best-selling book titled Dare to Be Great and, in 2012, launched her "One Word" audio series that touches and brings changes to many lives.    

When a power couple like this conducts a meeting, they will sometimes have it The Ritz London Hotel. In fact, they hosted a tea there, for which I recorded a podcast. It was nice, almost beyond description. Earlier, they had some teas at The Ritz, which was a nice setting to invite some high-level people to hear about the gospel.

Several people went down "under the power" or, as Shaneen calls it, "floored in the Spirit." Staff members at The Ritz were concerned, so they actually called an ambulance thinking that someone was sick. When I heard that story, I laughed.  

The Clarkes continue to minister throughout England and the world, and their desire is to empower others to take the gospel to nations.

"If you have a dream, you can make it happen," Shaneen says. "Do the little things, in small steps, and you'll end up climbing huge staircases for the Lord."

If the Clarkes inspire you, please listen to the podcasts, share this article with friends and leave your comments. {eoa}

]]> (Steve Strang) The Strang Report Fri, 17 Jun 2016 14:00:00 -0400