Good news this week reflected on some of the good that came out of 2020 and started 2021 out with some great music, good deeds, and new projects.


PRAISE: 2020 saw more Bible distributed in countries like China, Vietnam

There is hope entering 2021, despite the preceding year of uncertainty, as the Word of God spreads to new places in spite of persecution. 

Mission News Network reports Bibles were successfully distributed in East Asia last year, bringing the Gospel to new areas of the world.

The organization was able to distribute more than 300,000 gospels of John and 15,000 Bibles in 2020.

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Manitoba churches impressed by generosity of congregants during COVID

The generosity of Manitoba believers in the face of ongoing COVID-19 difficulties has been a blessing to local churches over the past year.

Several Steinbach churches this year say they were pleasantly surprised by the sustained generosity of their congregants.

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Skillet's John Cooper advocating for biblical truths in new book

A Christian rock artist is taking on a new mission to combat biblical apathy in believers.

After more than two decades on stage, Skillet's John Cooper has released a new book through which he hopes to fight the cultural relativism influencing faith today, CBN reports.

"We have gotten so scared about saying things that are true that it has caused a crisis," Cooper says in a podcast interview.

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Warm weather remains this week

The New Year weather feels more like the start of March rather than January on the prairies.

Yesterday in Winnipeg temperatures soared to +3, pushing people outside to enjoy the mild weather. As warm as it was, it was still three degrees off the daily high record of +5.8 degrees set in 2007.

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Armed Forces leaves Shamattawa after helping get COVID under control

Dozens of personnel from the Canadian Armed Forces have left a northern First Nation after helping the community fight a serious outbreak of COVID-19.

Just over 30 cases of COVID remain in the community of Shamattawa after numbers had peaked over 100 earlier in December. Around a quarter of the population had contracted the coronavirus, and the Canadian Armed Forces sent 55 members to help between December 13 and 31.

The military left on New Year's Eve, "having completed their tasks in the community," the military says in an online post.

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"A story of hope in the midst of chaos": Pastor's miraculous COVID recovery to become film

A pastor who says he experienced miraculous healing from COVID-19 after a cleaner prayed for him in his hospital room is now having his story made into a Netflix film.

"God sent a cleaner," Pastor Lee McClelland from The Ark Church in Belfast, Northern Ireland says in the original video, detailing how he was struggling with isolation.

"I honestly didn't know if I would make it or not," he says, and was "moments away from being put on a ventilator."

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For King & Country starting off the year with 'Joy'

The Grammy-award-winning brothers kicked off 2021 with a high-energy performance on a morning television network.

Luke and Joel Smallbone danced and sang to their hit single 'Joy' on Good Morning America on January 1, 2021 at 7:00 am.

"High-time time to kiss 2020 goodbye. So let’s dance into day one bright and bold. 2021 is filled with possibilities and a new chance to show compassion and kindness," the men shared on Facebook along with the video performance. 

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Best-selling Hosea-based novel being released as a film

Fans of Christian fiction are in for a treat as one of Francine Rivers's novels is hitting the big screen. 

Redeeming Love, written by Rivers, sold over 3 million copies, and has been published in more than 30 languages. The book was inspired by Hosea in the Old Testament and now it's being made into a movie.

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Who's a good boy?

The RCMP in Manitoba are showing off their newest officer, and it's safe to say easily their cutest.

In a post on the Manitoba RCMP's social media accounts, the Mounties unveiled their latest K-9 in training.

"In case anyone needed a little pick me up on the first Monday of 2021…here’s Nox, our newest (and arguably cutest!) puppy in training," the post says.

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Manitoba's most notable curling team

Jennifer Jones and her 2005-2020 teams are Manitoba’s Most Notable Curling Team.

Jones skipped teams that won six national championships, a pair of world titles as well as the 2014 Olympic gold medal in Sochi during that time frame.

"It was quite an honour," says Jill Officer, who played second for Jones until retiring after their 2018 world championship victory, "and a little bit of a surprise to be honest ... it was nice to see this recognition."

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Brandon's Adult & Teen Challenge looking forward to 2021

The Adult and Teen Challenge Super Thrift Store in Brandon is in full swing for 2021, and Store Manager, Aaron Murray, is looking ahead at ways to help their community through programming for those struggling with addictions, as well as their families and friends.

“It’s just going over how to love someone who is in addiction and now to enable them, to give them a little bit of tough love and some boundaries to truly help them, rather than giving in to all of their requests and needs.”    

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Carrie Underwood releasing a gospel album

The well-known country singer Carrie Underwood is surprising fans with her first-ever gospel album coming out this spring.

Underwood has often talked about her Christian faith while in the spotlight and has even recorded some Christian singles. These include 'Jesus Take the Wheel' released in 2005 and 'Something in the Water' in 2014. 

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Seniors struggling to connect with technology find grace over the phone

One Winnipeg pastor recently led communion with a senior couple over the phone as they weren't able to connect virtually. 

A portion of the Filipino United Community Church congregation either doesn't have access to technology or find it difficult learning how to use the internet. This means that finding ways to connect during a lockdown is more limited.

"We went back to the telephone," says Pastor Victor Cuarto. 

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Museum offering family-friendly 12-week star gazing event

The Manitoba Museum is launching a series of events to explore the universe called 'Dome at Home'. 

On January 7 beginning at 7:00 pm the free half hour program will start, and the series will run each Thursday until March 25. 

"This is aimed at everyone that is interested in going out and looking at the skies. You can go out with your kids, your significant other, or your parents, whoever you happen to be sheltering at home with," says Scott Young, the museum's astronomer. 

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Tiny homes being built for single moms in Haiti

A mission organization is hoping to solve Haiti's housing crisis, one tiny home at a time.

Mission Network News reports that For Haiti With Love builds Pilgrim Houses for needy families in Haiti to demonstrate God’s love. The organization is hoping to start by helping to women who recently became single mothers, and says that tiny homes are a good fit.

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WATCH: Meteor lights up Manitoba and Northwest Ontario

The first meteor shower of 2021 didn't disappoint as a giant fireball was seen by many Wednesday evening.

Around 8:30 p.m. people started taking to social media with reports of seeing the meteor lighting up the evening sky.

The meteor was not only spotted by people in Winnipeg but as far away as Fort Frances, Ont.

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From near-death collision to TikTok celebrity: Brianna Seewald shares her story

A nurse who nearly died in a two-vehicle collision near Ste. Anne insists that laughter is the best medicine, and it appears at least 200,000 other people agree.

On August 17 of last year, Mitchell resident Brianna Seewald was travelling down Highway 12 when she suddenly t-boned a vehicle attempting to cross Provincial Road 210. That was the incident that completely changed her life. 

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Ricky Skaggs praising God after open heart surgery

Country music and bluegrass legend Ricky Skaggs gives credit to feeling '150 per cent' after God prompted him to get his heart checked.

"It was a major blessing I didn't have a heart attack. Nothing was hurt, and nothing was destroyed or irreparable. It was just by the mercy and grace of God that all of this happened in this way," Skaggs told People Magazine in an exclusive interview

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Doghouse deliveries to northern Manitoba on paws until February

A Manitoban group is preparing to gift shelters and other much-needed supplies to furry friends in need.

Earthdog goes to communities in northern Manitoba to help them with their large canine populations.

"On reserves, one of the biggest struggles is resources in general for people, let alone dogs," Alexandra Turchyn, the adoption and foster coordinator of Earthdog says. "We see starving dogs. We see freezing dogs. We are lucky if they have a house outside. It is pretty sad some stuff that you see."

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Southern Health Board Chair finds positives in year of pandemic

In reflecting back on 2020, Bergen says one of the highlights was what the regional health authority was able to achieve through technology, because of COVID-19.

"How many of us are more comfortable today with either Teams or Zoom or whatever other platforms for board meetings or for committee meetings or you name it, we're doing that much more often," says Bergen.

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Community snow sculpture challenge to bring families together

One local woman is encouraging her neighbourhood to get outside and build snow sculptures as a way of connection in January. 

Julie Richard moved to the Charleswood area roughly five years ago and admits she hasn't found a way to get to know her neighbours well during that time. Starting this snow sculpture challenge is one way she hopes to do that. 

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Steven Curtis Chapman releases timely song of peace after violence in capitol

A few hours after the rioting began in the U.S. Capitol on January 6, well-known Christian singer Steven Curtis Chapman released a 'Desperate Benediction'.

Chapman had been working on this song for roughly a year, but the singer felt like yesterday during the protests was the right time to release this song, calling for God's peace over the country. 

"Words can’t describe the sadness that I feel as I watch the events currently unfolding in our country. I’m so heavy-hearted at the brokenness and division that we are witnessing and experiencing in our world today, and I am processing in the way most natural to me as a singer-songwriter: with a song," Chapman posted on Facebook along with a video of the song. 

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Update: Teen missing from Charleswood found safe

Police say a missing 16-year-old boy who had not been seen since Thursday afternoon is safe.

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Care homes preparing for COVID-19 vaccines

Oakview Place residents will be among the first in Manitoba to receive the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine.

"Working with the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority, we are delighted to confirm that residents of Oakview Place will be among the first long-term care residents in Manitoba to receive vaccinations next week," a spokesperson from Extendicare says in an email to CHVN.

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CMHA optimistic about new mental health ministerial appointment

The announcement of Manitoba's first-ever cabinet position for mental health is being applauded by mental health advocates.

On Monday, Premier Brian Pallister announced MLA Audrey Gordon would be the Minister of Mental Health, Wellness and Recovery. This is the first position of its kind in the province.

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Surgical capacities increasing in Manitoba to address backlog

Surgical capacity in hospitals across the province will be carefully increased beginning next week to allow more access for patients who have had procedures postponed due to COVID-19.

Shared Health chief nursing officer Lanette Siragusa says it's a step towards normal in Manitoba.

"We must begin to carefully increase access to surgery to meet the needs of patients whose procedures can no longer be delayed," Siragusa says.

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Apollo LTD entering new year singing 'Good Day' song

The alternative/pop duo is setting the stage for the new year with an upbeat single and their sophomore album.

Nothing is Ordinary. Everything is Beautiful. will be released by bandmates Jordan Phillips and Adam Stark on February 5, 2021.

"In a year like this where things have been super heavy, 'Good Day' feels like a respite, a breath of fresh air, a new beginning," Phillips says.

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