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PURE FLIX RELEASES GOD’S NOT DEAD: A LIGHT IN DARKNESS,

PURE FLIX RELEASES GOD’S NOT DEAD: A LIGHT IN DARKNESS, IN THEATERS
TODAY, MARCH 30
All-New Film in Hugely Successful Franchise Lands in Theaters
Today, March 30, 2018, Starring David A.R. White, John Corbett, Shane Harper, Ted McGinley, Jennifer Taylor, and Tatum O’Neal
SCOTTSDALE, Arizona (March 30)–PURE FLIX, the leading independent faith and family film studio, releases GOD’S NOT DEAD: A LIGHT IN DARKNESS, in theaters today, Friday, March 30, 2018.
Filmed on location in Little Rock, Arkansas, GOD’S NOT DEAD: A LIGHT IN DARKNESS stars David A.R. White (GOD’S NOT DEAD), Emmy Award® and Golden Globe® nominee John Corbett (MY BIG FAT GREEK WEDDING), Shane Harper (GOD’S NOT DEAD), Ted McGinley (Married with Children), Jennifer Taylor (Two and a Half Men), and Academy Award® winner Tatum O’Neal (PAPER MOON).
Additional cast includes Emmy Award® winner Gregory Alan Williams, Mike C. Manning, Samantha Boscarino, rap artist Shwayze, Jennifer Cipolla, and music legend Dr. Cissy Houston. Reprising their roles from GOD’S NOT DEAD are actors Shane Harper (“Josh”) and Benjamin Onyango (“Reverend Jude”).
GOD’S NOT DEAD: A LIGHT IN DARKNESS is an inspirational drama that centers on Pastor Dave (David A.R. White) and the unimaginable tragedy he endures when his church, located on the grounds of the local university, is burned down.
But his dreams of rebuilding the church face an unexpected setback when university officials reject his plans to rebuild, determining that the church is no longer relevant in today’s society.
Trusting in the motto that he has lived by that “God is good all the time,” Pastor Dave enlists the legal help of his estranged brother Pearce (John Corbett), who is an attorney but also an atheist.
As they partner together for a united cause, the brothers come to understand that not every victory requires defeating the opposition, and there is a greater win when you heal and rebuild with compassion and respect for others.
“Audiences have continued to show support and interest in the GOD’S NOT DEAD films and their relatable characters who endure similar challenges in their personal faith and lives,” says Michael Scott, Pure Flix founding partner. “Our hope is that these films offer entertainment and encouragement, with a starting point for sharing faith in a respectable and compassionate manner.”
GOD’S NOT DEAD: A LIGHT IN DARKNESS is the latest addition in the film franchise, which started with GOD’S NOT DEAD, the highest-grossing independent faith film of 2014, taking in more than $60 million at the box office.
GOD’S NOT DEAD: A LIGHT IN DARKNESS is Directed by Michael Mason and Produced by David A.R. White, Michael Scott, Brittany Yost, Elizabeth Travis, and Alysoun Wolfe, and Executive Produced by Troy Duhon and Robert Katz.
Moviegoers can follow the film and watch the trailer on the official web site at www.GodsNotDead.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GodsNotDeadTheMovie, or on Twitter @GodsNotDeadFilm.
Founded in 2005, and led by partners Michael Scott, David A.R. White, Elizabeth Travis and Alysoun Wolfe, Pure Flix is the leading independent faith and family studio in the world. Its recent releases include: THE CASE FOR CHRIST, GOD’S NOT DEAD 2, GOD’S NOT DEAD, DO YOU BELIEVE?, WOODLAWN, A QUESTION OF FAITH, and SAME KIND OF DIFFERENT AS ME. With offices in Los Angeles and Scottsdale, Pure Flix has produced, acquired, marketed and distributed over 100 faith and family-friendly films. Aligned with their vision to influence the global culture for Christ through media, Pure Flix is the industry leader in creating high-quality inspirational feature film content. The studio’s official website is Pureflixstudio.com. The company also features a leading streaming video on demand service, with thousands of movies, originals, TV shows and more emphasizing faith, family and fun. For more information, go to Pureflix.com.

Andrew Peterson’s Resurrection Letters

Andrew Peterson’s Resurrection Letters

By Doug McKelvey

 

On paper Resurrection Letters, Vol. I is a project that shouldn’t exist. The math doesn’t add up. After ten years of putting it off, ten years of feeling too intimidated and inadequate to write and record the project he instinctively knew could be the most important and personally meaningful of his career, Andrew Peterson wrestled a growing sense he could put it off no longer. After all, we’re only given so many years in this life.

 

Peterson’s twenty years of creative output as a songwriter and novelist had already served to articulate and shape the longings of hundreds of thousands of fans, turning and training their desires towards eternal things. His poetic and theologically rich expressions have been always honest, sometimes painful, ever restless, ever hopeful, ever human. He is the rare artist who clearly sees his talent, not as a reason for pride and self-promotion, but as a thing he is given primarily to steward in the service of others. And it was because of that posture of humility—and despite all his recent successes as a recording artist, novelist, filmmaker, and non-profit organizer—that the unfinished Resurrection Letters project was always present somewhere in the back of his mind unsettling him like a splinter under skin.

 

“Listeners asked me again and again about when I would record Resurrection Letters, Volume One,” Andrew remembers, “and I would wince every time.”

 

To put all of this another way, there are many artists who are gifted, and then there are a small handful of artists who are gifts. And Andrew Peterson is a gift to the Body of Christ. He has not pursued a career by asking what would sell well and seeking to cash in on that. Instead he has pursued a calling by asking what would serve well and then laboring to bring those expressions of beauty and comfort and longing into being. When he creates, he creates with a measure of fear and trembling, because he begins in the knowledge of his own limitations, never presuming he will be able to bring his work to any meaningful completion. So it makes sense that the project he saw as most necessary would also be the project he would feel most unprepared, even unworthy, to pursue.

 

“Honestly, as the centrality of the resurrection became clearer and clearer to me from a theological standpoint,” he says, “the less I felt up to the task.”

 

A decade ago Peterson had been so stirred by implications of the resurrection expressed in N.T. Wright’s Surprised By Hope and C.S. Lewis’ The Great Divorce that he penned an album’s worth of songs unpacking those epiphanies. For the intervening decade since the release of Resurrection Letters, Vol. II though, he’s found himself mumbling ambiguous and reluctant answers to that obvious, repeated question: “When are you going to go back and record Volume I?”

 

“The songs I wrote for Volume II traced the ripple effects of the resurrection,” Andrew explains. “They explored how it impacted my own life and hopes rather than being specifically about Jesus. I called it Volume II because I knew there was a more fundamental part of that story still to tell. The whole church, the whole history of our faith, hinges on Christ’s resurrection. But I didn’t feel adequate to the task of communicating that, so for ten years I’ve carried that insecurity along with the sense that I needed to bring it to completion at some point.”

 

Eventually, that time came. In the fall of 2017 Andrew met with his label Centricity Music and together they agreed on a deadline three short months away so the project could release in time for Easter of 2018. Now Resurrection Letters, Vol. I was on the calendar. The gears were turning and time and money from the label were being invested in anticipation of the pending release, so one way or another Andrew was going to have to deliver something. Problem was, those three months spanned a quarter year which was shaping up to be the most unlikely recording season of Andrew Peterson’s career.

 

“I came into the process with only two songs written,” Andrew explains, “and during those three months I had two trips to England scheduled, a trip to Israel, a deadline to complete the Wingfeather Saga animated film, and a deadline to finish writing a nonfiction book. I was also staging the Rich Mullins tribute concert, staging the Rabbit Room Live show, hosting the annual Hutchmoot Conference, and coordinating and touring the Behold the Lamb of God Christmas concert. It really didn’t make sense that we could record Resurrection Letters, Vol. I during those same three months, but somehow, on odd days when I was home in Nashville, it happened.”

 

Happened is perhaps a slight understatement. Three months later Peterson had managed to record fourteen new songs. At that point a decision was made to split the project into a five-song EP and a nine-song album, partly because of the number of songs, and partly because of the subject matter. Most of the songs were about Christ’s resurrection, but a handful centered instead on his crucifixion.

 

“My dream was always that Resurrection Letters, Vol. I would be a record you would listen to on Easter Sunday,” Andrew says, “so I wanted it to feel like a celebration. Early on I imagined a three-part structure following the line from the Anglican liturgy ‘Christ has died, Christ is risen, Christ will come again.’ But once everything was recorded it just didn’t feel right to open the project with “Last Words (Tenebrae)”(a song based on Christ’s final utterances on the cross) and then to spend five songs contemplating his death. So we split it. The Prologue EP (Resurrection Letters: Prologue), honors the necessary darkness of the cross and becomes a musical meditation for Passion Week and Good Friday, allowing Resurrection Letters, Vol. I to be the pure Easter celebration we envisioned.”

 

Much of the credit for the prolific song output during those three months, Peterson says, goes to producer Ben Shive (Ellie Holcomb, Colony House, Mercy Me). Shive stepped up to shepherd the project through Andrew’s frequent absences. Having produced Resurrection Letters, Vol. II a decade earlier and toured for years with Andrew, Ben was the obvious choice. “He understood more than anyone else what we were trying to do,” Andrew says. “Plus, Ben Shive knows scripture better than any friend I have, which is essential for a project like this. He even wrote two of the songs and co-wrote another three.”

 

Shive had also split production credits on Peterson’s last two studio projects, Light for the Lost Boy and The Burning Edge of Dawn. Those albums were autobiographical, dealing in large part with Andrew’s “long, dark journey” through a three-year depression.

 

“One of the reasons I love doing the Behold the Lamb of God tour every year,” Andrew says, “is that it feels really good to spend a month of the year not singing about me and my story, but instead singing words from scripture about the Lamb of God. After four years spent writing and singing songs about my own struggles, to spend this season writing and singing about the death and resurrection of Jesus felt like a culmination of that hard journey. When I die, I’m not interested in people saying that I told my own story well, except in how the telling of my own journey might have drawn them to a deeper understanding of the gospel. Resurrection Letters, Vol. I is a distillation of that hope.”

 

Such hope is articulated most clearly in the first single and video “Is He Worthy?” Drawn from the fifth chapter of Revelation, the song is structured as a sort of liturgy set to music, utilizing a call and response format that invites listeners to become participants. It isn’t difficult to imagine that “Is He Worthy?” might be printed in hymnals 200 years from now. The poetic, catechismal lyric begins in a recognition of the world’s brokenness and builds to a hope-filled and worshipful proclamation of Christ’s worthiness.

 

“When I sing those words from scripture, I can hardly believe they’re true,” Andrew says. “‘From every people and tribe, every nation and tongue, he has made us a kingdom and priests to God who reign with the Son.’ We’re told that we will actually reign with Christ. That is a mind-blowing promise. How can we even wrap our thoughts around it?”

 

The album’s upbeat, anthemic opener, “His Heart Beats,” likewise deals with an incomprehensible reality: that the resurrection of Jesus wasn’t only a spiritual event, but involved a dead physical body being restored to life; that a heart which had been silent for three days suddenly contracted and began to beat again; that the blood which had stilled and pooled in Christ’s veins suddenly began to flow again. “His Heart Beats” is a joyful meditation and triumphant declaration likely to be incorporated into many Easter sunrise services.

 

A third song that could similarly serve the church for generations is the psalm-like “Always Good,” written when a friend suddenly and unexpectedly lost his wife. Perhaps more than any other song on the record, “Always Good” is a hard-won confession of faith that lives in that expectant tension between the hurts of this life and the hopes of what is to come.

 

“I never cried so much making a record,” Andrew reflects. “What it really means to ponder and pray and write about the significance of the centrality of the resurrection is that the whole album is about Jesus. It’s about the person of Christ. Through that creative process I found myself loving him more. If Behold the Lamb of God is about dusting cobwebs off the Christmas story to remind people it’s about the incarnation and the atonement for sin, then Resurrection Letters, Vol. I is the next chapter in the story, a celebration of what Christ saved us for. My hope is that these songs kindle a new longing not only in hearts, but down to our very bones and sinews—a tangible longing that we were made for this, for this coming redemption, for God dwelling with his people in a more profound way than he did even in the garden.”

 

www.andrew-peterson.com, Facebook, Twitter

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Bethel Music’s Steffany Gretzinger’s “Possessing Masterwork” Blackout to Release Tomorrow

Bethel Music’s Steffany Gretzinger’s
“Possessing Masterwork” Blackout
to Release Tomorrow
Sold-out Celebration of  Blackout
Available to Live Stream Tonight
Nashville, Tenn. (Mar. 29, 2018) – Bethel Music’s Steffany Gretzinger will unveil her sophomore album, Blackout, tomorrow to critical acclaim. With songs for the “in-between moments in life” that often shape us, Blackout heralds the message that even when circumstances bend towards chaos, light that shines from the inside out cannot be dimmed.
To celebrate Blackout, Bethel Music is holding a sold-out album release celebration at Cascade Theatre in Gretzinger’s hometown of Redding, CA. Gretzinger will perform songs off the new project. For those unable to attend, the event will be available to live stream on Mar. 29 at 8:00pm PST at https://bethelmusic.com/blackout/.
What critics are saying about Blackout
Blackout is a possessing masterwork, a career achievement if she decided for some reason to walk away tomorrow—5/5 Stars!” – CCM Magazine
 “Every song is completely anointedSpirit-led and emotionally captivating. Steffany’s powerful and gorgeous vocals keep me hanging on every word she sings.”
– New Release Today
“With powerful, engaging vocals, and catchy pop melodies, Blackout is a worshipful not-to-be-missed album of 2018.” – JesusFreakHideout.com
“Her new songs testify to the fact that God moves in living color and walks hand-in-hand with us through the dark.” – Homelife Magazine
“…it’s personal with equal portions of emotions and intelligence.” – Hallels
“With intriguing musical arrangements and encouraging lyrics, listeners are sure to find a song that inspires their Christian walk and bring them closer to the Savior.” – Today’s Christian Entertainment
Blackout is available for pre-order here.
Get Connected with Steffany Gretzinger: 
Website: https://bethelmusic.com/artists/steffany-gretzinger/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SteffanyDawnGretzinger/
Instagram: @SteffanyDawn
Twitter: @SteffGretz

Phil Wickham Delivers New Single “Living Hope” Tomorrow Coinciding With Good Friday

Phil Wickham Delivers New Single “Living Hope” Tomorrow Coinciding With Good Friday

Radio Single Marks First New Music From Forthcoming Album
Nashville, Tenn. (Mar. 29, 2018) – Harmonizing with Good Friday and Easter, California-based worship leader Phil Wickham will release the timely “Living Hope” tomorrow on Good Friday. The single was co-written with Brian Johnson (Bethel Music) and will impact radio on Friday. Wickham offered listeners a sneak peek infused countdown on social media. Speaking to the resounding power of the song, churches across the country organically picked up on the track before its release.

“Last year, Brian Johnson (Bethel Music) and I started writing a song over text,” shares Wickham. “Over the course of a month we threw lyrics and voice memos back and forth. The result of all of those text messages was this song, ‘Living Hope.’ I remember both of us feeling that something special had been given to us, and it’s become an anthem at both of the churches where we lead. The fact that this song has already found its way into other church communities before it’s even been released makes me so excited for what God has in store.”

“Living Hope” marks the first single from Wickham’s anticipated new record due out later this year. The newest collection of music will follow suit with his 2016 release Children Of God which critics noted was “Phil Wickham at his best” (Worship Leader).

Wickham will continue his consistent tour schedule marking dates in New Mexico, Washington, Texas, Colorado, Arizona and his home state of California. For the latest info, visit www.PhilWickham.com.

“Living Hope” will be available on Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes, Amazon and Google Play.

About Phil Wickham

Phil Wickham is, at his core, a humble and sincere artist who writes songs and worships God using the medium of music. It is with that brush that he paints images of a loving and creative God across the canvases of listeners’ hearts and minds. The evidence of this gift has been apparent on all of his critically acclaimed efforts: Phil Wickham (2006), Cannons (2007), Heaven & Earth (2009), Response (2011), The Ascension (2013) and Children Of God (2016). His gold-certified single “This Is Amazing Grace” gave Wickham his first career No. 1, holding the top spot on Billboard’s National Christian Audience Chart for 13 consecutive weeks. The honors continued as the single was named Billboard’s 2014 No. 1 Christian Airplay Song of the year and BMI’s 2015 Christian Song of the Year. In addition to its success at radio, the song has become a beloved anthem in the modern church, increasing Wickham’s recognition as a gifted artist and songwriter with a true heart of worship. “Living Hope” marks Wickham’s first song from his forthcoming collection of new music expected to release later this year.

Get Connected With Phil Wickham
www.philwickham.com

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PLANETSHAKERS BAND RELEASES HEAVEN ON EARTH PART 1 APRIL 6

PLANETSHAKERS BAND RELEASES HEAVEN ON EARTH PART 1 APRIL 6

 

PREMIERES EP LIVE ON DAYSTAR TV IN OVER 180 COUNTRIES

 

Praise EP Recorded Live With Tens Of Thousands Of Worshippers In Asia

 

 

Internationally recognized praise band Planetshakers, with a mission of “empowering generations to win generations,” will independently release Heaven On Earth Part 1 April 6th on iTunes, Amazon Music, Google Play and more digital outlets, as well as through Apple Music, Spotify and other streaming sites. Recorded live at Planetshakers’ regional conferences in Philippines, Malaysia and Singapore, the EP captures the heart and dynamic praise of Planetshakers Band along with tens of thousands of worshippers.

 

In addition to the new recording, Planetshakers Band will also premiere songs from Heaven On Earth Part 1 during the live Daystar Television Network broadcast of the annual Planetshakers Conference in Melbourne, Australia April 4 – 7 (see local listings for times). This marks the fourth con