Annual conference scheduled Feb. 14-17
SIKESTON - It's back to their foundations, as Rural Restoration marks its 15 years of ministry and 13 years of spreading its message through an annual conference.
The message for this year's Rural Restoration Conference, explained Carol Cohen, will be the need for Americans to turn back to the foundations which were essential in establishing the United States of America. "We will emphasize our foundations of God and country and how they should be combined," she said.
Cohen, executive assistant of Adopt a Farm Family of America Inc., is working with its founders, Peter and Mary Myers, in organizing the annual conference, which this year is scheduled for Feb. 14-17 at the Ramada Inn.
While the event is primarily geared to farmers and those affiliated with agriculture, organizers emphasized all of the programs are open to the public.
"Last year we had about 50 persons attend, this year we hope to double that number," said Cohen. "Anyone can come. Local residents might want to review the schedule and pick and choose events that they are interested in. We would love people to grow with what we have to offer."
This year's conference will include a mixture of agriculture-related speakers and those emphasizing Christian themes. Kicking off the events will be Dr. Robert McGee, who will be featured following the opening dinner buffet at 6 p.m. Feb. 14.
A speaker and author of "The Search for Significance," McGee is the founder of Rapha, a nationally recognized healthcare organization that provides care for adults and adolescents suffering with psychiatric and substance abuse problems. McGee will discuss self-worth and the need for individuals to base their accomplishments through Christ's love and not the views of others, according to Cohen.
On Feb. 15, McGee will present a workshop on the topic, too.
Max Armstrong, co-host of the U.S. Farm Report with Orion Samuelson, is slated as the keynote speaker on Feb. 15. He will speak at 1 p.m. following the noon luncheon.
Armstrong has won national honors for his daily syndicated radio show, "Farming America." According to Ray Fowler, who is assisting Cohen in promoting this year's event, Armstrong will provide his perspective on the nation's farm problems and the future of agriculture.
"He has such a knowledge of agriculture and is so familiar with the problems farmers have, I think he will be able to add some real insight to farm planning for the future," said Fowler.
Armstrong will be featured during a panel discussion that afternoon with Peter Myers and area farmers.
Also scheduled for Saturday will be morning breakout sessions including a financial seminar directed by Donna Taylor with Financial Fitness in Sikeston and a marriage seminar led by Mike and Kim Miller. The afternoon breakout sessions will cover topics such as farmer-owned cooperatives, crop marketing and Patti Blount's workshop on the importance of love and acceptance.
Saturday evening's featured speaker is William J. Federer, the author of "America's God and Country Encyclopedia of Quotations." Federer will highlight "the role of godly men in establishment of our Constitution," said Cohen.
Also featured that evening will be Anne Daugherty, worship leader at Calvary Chapel of Kansas City.
Feb. 16's activities include a worship service led by Joshua Atieno, who is directing ADOPT's mission project in Kenya, Africa; an ADOPT Board meeting; and an evening service at the Miner Baptist Church featuring Federer.
Although there is no charge to attend the workshops or keynote sessions, there is a $10 charge for each meal. Those wishing meal tickets are asked to contact the ADOPT office by Feb. 10.
For more information about the conference or to make meal reservations call the Rural Restoration office at 1-800-472-4674.