Tuesday, July 17, 2018

64 Campers on Campus

Prayers requested this morning as 64 campers

on campus this week at Cono




The local church in Walker Sunday morning was such an encouragement in so many ways. Pastor Casey preached, who some of you met when you came out, and the Lord was glorified and we were encouraged. He is our speaker this week at the high school camp. 
We were doubly blessed when during the prayer time a mother gave testimony of how much her son enjoyed camp, how he grew, how he can’t stop talking about it… from there the church was buzzing with comments and excitement. Praise the Lord. Several of the kids that came to camp begged us to do a “camp song” with hand motions at the lunch afterward the service.. it was such a hit.

Another parent who didn’t register her daughter for camp, came up and literally pleaded for her daughter to come this coming week. We explained she would have to sleep on the floor (with a mattress) so we agreed. We have space for 60 campers and we have 64 coming! What a blessing….

Please, please continue to pray. This week with high schools kids will be more challenging for sure. By this time of the summer, the counselors are pretty tired.
We have to leave early next Sunday morning to head back as next week at Brevard has over 450 on campus… it takes 14.5hours  driving time, so the whole trip takes about 16 hours with all the stops.

From Wallace Anderson, Executive Director of Ridge Haven Cono
I am happy that we can continue the life-changing ministry that Cono has been known for. We expect, by God's grace, to see Him work. Thank you for your part in Cono historically, and for watching this ministry unfold and make a difference for young people again.





Our Contact Information
Ridge Haven Cono
3269 Quasqueton Ave.
Walker, IA 52352
828-702-9510

Thursday, June 21, 2018

70 Years Ago

70 years ago this month, Cono started
in a fierce theological storm



It was the spring of 1948. Iowa farmers were still uncertain about the impact of a wet season on getting the last of their seed corn planted. But a few of them, along with their young pastor, had other concerns as well.
My dad, Max Belz, had served this rural group of some 50 Presbyterians (known as the Cono Presbyterian Church) since 1946. A few of them were brand new believers, part of what they themselves called “a revival at Cono”—just like the revival that had taken place there half a century earlier. The saints were excited.
Together, all these folks had grown in their distress over the liberal direction of their denominational affiliation, the Presby­terian Church USA, a denomination that had said that a minister did not have to believe in a literal virgin birth, a literal resurrection of Jesus from the dead, or a literal understanding of Jesus' miracles. In fact, they (pastor, elders, and congregation) had voted a few weeks earlier to leave that denomina­tion and seek some other more fitting tie. Two or three of them had traveled to Nashville to observe the annual synod of the Bible Presbyterian Church—a young “funda­mentalist” and “separatist” denomination. They liked what they saw there.
So the little church at Cono issued an invitation to Carl McIntire, a fiery leader of the Bible Presbyterian denomination, to come from New Jersey to Iowa to spell out the issues in a public gathering. McIntire was also editor of the Christian Beacon, a weekly tabloid with a national distribution. The meeting was set for June 7.
I was six years old that June, closing in on seven. I remember standing under the creaky windmill just outside the home of Herb and Norma Arnold early that afternoon when a car drove in, the doors opened, and this very famous man got out. He was weary after flying all day from Philadelphia, and said he needed a nap before the evening’s dinner and gathering at the church just a mile and a half north on the dusty gravel road. The Arnolds had a room for him.
I recall this as an especially festive time. It was exciting to have an out-of-state VIP visit us, whether or not I understood it all. The Cono church had just been significantly renovated, relocated by the Amish house movers to a new foundation and new basement and fellowship hall. All that was already paid for, and the church still had $600 in its treasury.
McIntire was half way through his nap when another car drove in. It was the official squad car of the Buchanan County sheriff, a big but friendly looking man. He was there to serve an injunction on behalf of the Dubuque Presbytery of the Presbyterian Church USA, who claimed to be the owners of the Cono church. The injunction said that neither McIntire, nor Max Belz, nor the elders and offi­cers of the Cono church could set foot that evening on the property they thought they owned. The injunction argued that those parties all represented a point of view different from that of the property’s owners.
The sheriff, whose name was Emory Hart, apologized for inter­rupting McIntire’s nap. He said he was obligated to follow the law. He also said that the Presbytery’s officers had asked him to serve the injunction just as the group was sitting down for the evening meal. They wanted the most disruptive effect possible. But he reminded us he was a believer, a Pentecostal, and that the legali­ties didn’t require him to be that mean-spirited. By serving the injunc­tion earlier in the afternoon, he would give the Cono folks a little time to make other arrangements.
Max Belz’s “other arrangements” proved startlingly media-savvy. They included getting in touch immediately with Associated Press, the Des Moines Register, the Cedar Rapids Gazette, etc. As many as 150-200 people gathered that evening at the town hall in nearby Rowley. That included a remarkable cadre of reporters, whose headlines the next morning set the stage for a whole summer of follow-up stories about the bully tactics of the presbytery against the little country church. It was soon a state-wide firestorm.
All that thunder and lightning, however, was just a precursor to the front-page headline in the following week’s Christian Beacon. McIntire invited his readers to a detailed account of his Iowa visit under the banner: “Meet the Sheriff.” And then, for the next several weeks in the Beacon, he hammered away at the evils of the liberal denomina­tions.
In a court case later that year, the Cono congregation lost its property to the PCUSA presbytery. The Arnolds made one acre available, just a few hundred yards south of their home, for what came to be a new church and school campus. In the one-room school house at Cono, a collection of newspaper clippings recounting these days is still on display.

                                            —Joel Belz, founder of WORLD, June 2018

_________________________________________________________


From Wallace Anderson, Executive Director of Ridge Haven Cono
I am happy that we can continue the life-changing ministry that Cono has been known for. We expect, by God's grace, to see Him work. Thank you for your part in Cono historically, and for watching this ministry unfold and make a difference for young people again.

__________________________________


Our Contact Information
Ridge Haven Cono
3269 Quasqueton Ave.
Walker, IA 523
52
828-702-9510

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Furniture Donation

Furniture arrives in Iowa from Greensboro, N.C.
for Ridge Haven Cono

Jim Bullock Jr. was a long-time supporter of Cono. He was a manufacturer of large heating, cooling and clean-air systems in Greensboro, N.C. His sudden passing in 2017 left his widow, Sherry, in a position to donate enough furniture to furnish an entire house at Cono. The move took place last week, with teens ready to unload on the Cono campus. Thank you, Jim Bullock, for your generous spirit and a life well-lived. Thank you, Sherry, for remembering Cono in this way.
There are still several fine houses at Cono that need furnishings. Let Wallace Anderson (wallace@ridgehaven.org) know if you want to help.



 From Wallace Anderson, Executive Director
I am happy that we can continue the life-changing ministry that Cono has been known for. We expect, by God's grace, to see Him work. Thank you for your part in Cono historically, and for watching this ministry unfold and make a difference for young people again.



Our Contact Information
Ridge Haven Cono
3269 Quasqueton Ave.
Walker, IA 52352
828-702-9510

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

6 Cono Cabins Ready for Ministry

Ridge Haven Cono Prepares for Kids —
and Changed Lives


From Board President Andy White 
Ridge Haven Cono is getting ready for its first summer camp season. 
Greetings in the precious Name above all names, Jesus Christ.
I trust you are faithfully praying for our new ministry at Cono. Wallace and the staff in both locations have been busy with administrative duties, construction, promotion, etc. getting ready for our FIRST season for campers in Iowa! Thank you for praying faithfully for this work of the Kingdom.
Please do continue to devote time for consecrated time for lifting up this ministry to our Heavenly Father.
We all have committed to pray particularly each Monday for Ridge Haven Cono. For additional information, go to to the Ridge Haven website: ridgehaven.org or cono.org.
Wallace Anderson, Ridge Haven's Director, has also forwarded me a prayer list for our Cono prayer team:
Praises:
— We have completed six cabins. Thank you Lord!
— The firewall in the gym is finished. We are just waiting on the new State required doors to be installed and the gym will be ready. The doors should be here on May 11th.
— We already had two work teams from PCA Church in Iowa — one from Hospers IA and the other from North Liberty.

Prayers:
— Pray for our summer staff as they prepare for a very busy summer in Brevard and at Cono. Both groups start arriving in Brevard for two weeks of training May 16th.  Pray that the Lord will use them greatly for His Kingdom this summer.
— Please continue to pray for the sprinkler situation. We hope to begin this fall. We still need about 300K.
— Pray that everyone that comes to both campuses will know Jesus better when they leave than when they came.

With prayer, God does great things! May we be faithful. Bless you for your prayers! 
In the love of Christ,

ANDY WHITE
Ridge Haven Board President



From Wallace Anderson, Executive Director
I am happy that we can continue the life-changing ministry that Cono has been known for. We expect, by God's grace, to see Him work. Thank you for your part in Cono historically, and for watching this ministry unfold and make a difference for young people again.


Our Contact Information
Ridge Haven Cono
3269 Quasqueton Ave.
Walker, IA 52352
828-702-9510

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Cono Camper Cabins

Ridge Haven Cono prepares for Kids and Changed Lives

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

You're Invited!

Save November 11th to celebrate with us at Cono!
You're invited...
Cono will start a new era on November 11, 2017, when Ridge Haven, the Camp and Conference Center of the PCA, officially takes over the property, and begins to establish a camp, conference and retreat center there. These may begin as soon as next summer. A few details in the land transfer are being addressed and these are expected to be finished quickly.
As Cono/Ridge Haven begins this ministry, their first and foremost commitment is to churches in Iowa, those churches' youth, their health, and their growth. From that, Ridge Haven hopes prayerfully to expand Cono's reach into the Midwest, including other cities in Iowa, but also the metro areas of Minneapolis, Chicago, St. Louis, and Omaha. Ridge Haven's hope is to draw youth and adults in a new way. The 17 buildings and 192 acres at Cono will soon be put to active Gospel use again.
Toward that end, please join us Saturday, November 11, 10 a.m., as a day that as many of us as possible will join together for a joint celebratory worship service at Cono—as the land deeds are turned over to Ridge Haven and a new ministry is inaugurated.
If you would, email iowapresbytery@gmail.com so that we can plan lunch together.

Our Contact Information
Friends of Cono Christian School
1130 Main Street
Ackley, IA 50601
828-702-9510

828-702-9510

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Settlement Reached in Cono Case



An out-of-court settlement was reached, returning all the land and buildings to the Iowa Presbytery. WE ARE THRILLED. The transition of the property and buildings will take place on September 1. The current occupants' organization gets to keep the financial assets (about $650,000) and will receive an additional $350,000 over the next five years. While this part may not seem optimal, it is great that this chapter is over. Pray for the Presbytery, as they ponder the next step! The day that we are all welcomed back on campus, when God continues to be beautifully glorified and children fill the buildings -- is coming. Thank you for your interest and support.

Please keep praying : Pray for a vibrant restored ministry at Cono soon!

Sticking with it... You can still give to the cause. Any extra will go to the renewed work.

Give to:
Iowa Presbytery - Cono
1130 Main Street
Ackley, IA 50601