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Disciples Women Enjoying Lunch at Joe T. Garcia's

The Disciples Women (DWM) of Central Christian Church of Dallas enjoyed lunch and a beautiful spring day on the patio of Joe T. Garcia’s Mexican Restaurant in Ft. Worth.  A spring breeze, warm sunshine, lush gardens and flowing fountains created the ambiance for wonderful food served family style at the Ft. Worth iconic restaurant. 

April is traditionally “field trip month” for the women who are members of the ministry and they enjoy the spring beauty of North Texas and the charming eateries found throughout the area. Previous trips have taken them along the Bluebonnet Trail to Ennis, Texas with lunch at the Wildflower Café, to Waxahachie, Texas and lunch at the Dove’s Nest, The Ft. Worth Stockyards and more.

However, it is not all play for this group of volunteers.  The women serve the community by providing outreach and support to several local charities.  Juliette Fowler Communities, Genesis Women’s Shelter, Maple Lawn Elementary School, Austin Street Center and North Dallas Shared Ministries are a few of the non-profits where the women generously donate funds and time. 

 Additionally, through education, the organization provides opportunities for spiritual growth and enrichment, enabling women to develop a sense of personal responsibility for the whole mission of the Church of Jesus Christ.

All Women of the Christian Church are automatically members of the DWM, but you don’t have to be a member of the church to share the camaraderie and grace offered by the group.  All are welcome!

For more information, contact the church office at 214-526-7291 or Shelia Huffman at

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Looking Over Toxin Free Cosmetics

Carol Manzetti spoke at Central Christian Church Thursday afternoon on ridding your home and your body of harmful toxins. 

An effort to have soft supple skin, the freshest smelling laundry and gleaming tile and hardwood floors has us often, unknowingly, bringing poisonousness chemicals into our homes and ultimately to our families.

Manzetti began looking for the use of safer cleaning and beauty products six year ago following a miscarriage.

“People often become more aware of environmental toxins during a critical point in their life,” she said.

For instance, the birth of a baby or trying to conceive frequently makes people more cognizant of harmful external factors. How many people have given up the life-threatening habit of smoking cigarettes not because the doctor said to but because “you can’t smoke around the baby”?  Or maybe the shattering diagnosis of a serious illness such as breast cancer or a chronic condition like inflammatory arthritis cause people to ask the question, “what am I putting into my body?”  

And consuming is not only what we eat but what we breathe and what we absorb through our skin.

Manzetti concedes that you can’t live in a bubble and that there is no one culprit.

“However, there are endocrine disrupting chemicals in many of the products that we use over and over every day, and that is where changes can make a difference,” she said.

Fragrance can be a huge offender.

“Give up my perfume, but I’ve worn it for years?”

 “It is all about balance. Like dieting, you need to make choices. If you really like one product, keep it, but switch out another,” Manzetti said. “There are many laundry detergents on the market today that are fragrance free.”

Skin cream can be another felon. It stays on your body for a long time between showering. It is also said that the average woman “eats” 14 pounds of lipstick in her lifetime.

Researchers at the Center for Environmental Research and Children's Health at UC Berkeley say the average teenage girl uses 14 personal care products a day, many of which include chemicals that are under-studied.

It is not just the female population affected by toxicity levels in personal care products.  Men use shaving cream, shampoo, soap and deodorant as well as women.

And, it is not just the toddlers crawling on the floor that pick up every tiny object and put it into their mouth.  Your pets lick crumbs from a floor that may have been mopped with a noxious substance.

Don’t rely on the picture on the label or the use of the word “natural” when selecting products.  You must read the ingredients.  Plus, there are apps for your phone such as “Healthy Living” and “Think Dirty” that will educate users on potential toxins in household, personal care and beauty products. Just scan the barcode and get a rating.

When asked to name a good household cleaner, “I use a lot of vinegar,” Manzetti said.

Some of you may remember having your hair rinsed in vinegar water following a shampoo.  Maybe Mom knew best.

Stop by Central, located at 4711 Westside Drive, and tour the new Wellness Center soon to open on the second floor of the building.

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Restoring WWII Box Car

After three years of planning and construction, Monday, March 25th saw the arrival and installation of the first major pieces of the new core exhibition of the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum at its new location in the Historic West End District of downtown Dallas.

Some highlights of the new exhibition will include a floor-to-ceiling replica of the Brandenburg Gates draped in Nazi flags, as they were during WWII, symbolizing the reign of Adolph Hitler; ten 17-feet-tall, free-standing artistic interpretations of ten modern genocides with each featuring one of the ten stages of genocide such as classification, discrimination and dehumanisation; and a gallery of bullets raining from the ceiling, representing the taking of life that occurred prior to the Nazi death camps.

An authentic railroad box car made in Germany during World War II and brought to the Holocaust Museum in 1984 from Belgium is being refurbished for a walk-through audio tour. The renovations include wood from the era the box car was built acquired from a 100-year-old North Texas barn to replace missing planks. Local artisans (welders, painters, etc.) are meticulously restoring the car to its original integrity.

These exhibits and more will be part of the permanent exhibition displayed in the 55,000 square foot structure. 

Featuring three main sections, the Holocaust/Shoah Wing, the Human Rights Wing and the Pivot to America Wing, “the new structure is five times larger than the current building,” Museum President and CEO, Mary Pat Higgins said.

When asked how long it will take to tour the museum, she answered “there are three types of museum visitors, the skimmers, the swimmers and the deep divers, so length of tour will depend on the visitor.”  However, a 2 ½ hour audio tour is being prepared.

The museum has changed its name from the Dallas Holocaust Museum Center for Education and Tolerance to the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum, a change that will encompass even more evils initiated by discrimination.

The new museum is more than a museum.  It is a message to the world that we will never forget the Holocaust and we will do everything we can to make sure that the lessons are taught to future generations.

How do we teach the lessons learned from the Holocaust? 

“By telling the story over and over,” Museum Chairperson Frank Risch said. “And, by telling it to the children,” he added.

The future relies on education and it starts with children. As well as numerous programs for adults at the Holocaust Museum, there are many programs for middle school and high school students and family programs such as “Home School Day” and “Girl Scout Day.”

A visit to the Holocaust museum when taken back to the classroom can be compared to so many discriminatory acts that are practiced every day, often unknowingly.

Located at 300 North Record Street, the museum is currently still under construction but is scheduled to open on September 17, 2019.

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Peter and Penelope

Hello everyone! Remember how much fun you and Fido had last year at the Central Dog Park Spring Festival? It’s that time, again!

Central Community Dog Park “Spring Festival” will be held Saturday, April 13 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. The event is nothing short of a dog-gone good time with special treats for you and your pooch. Your dog will have the opportunity to run around the one-acre fenced park doing what dogs do to enjoy a social outing while you visit with other dog-loving owners. 

That famous spring-time rabbit, Peter Cottontail, will be on hand for some great photo ops. You can even order your 2019 “Spring Fever” Dog Park T-Shirt on-line by visiting 

The park is located at 4711 Westside Drive. Established over a decade ago, it has continued to grow in popularity with the neighborhood and the community. The rustic setting, shaded by mature Live Oaks, offers a peaceful sanctuary for enjoying nature and spending time with your best friend. There is plenty of seating, a dog bath station, reading material and a separate area for small dogs. The adjacent paved parking lot provides assessable parking.  

Come join the fun.  It’s free and all are welcome!

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Haven’t heard of it?  I hadn’t either.  But after spending an hour with Denae Richards in her therapy room at Westside Wellness Center Friday afternoon experiencing relaxing sounds and gentle vibrations in this holistic approach to relieving many symptoms that plague our bodies and minds, I want more.  I want to know more and experience more.

The treatment is a science-based practice that has been studied by researchers worldwide including the National Institutes of Health (NIH).  NIH reports the benefits of using vibroacoustic therapy for stress relief, migraines, Parkinson’s, PTSD, anxiety, physical injuries, brain function, COPD, Asthma and many other conditions.

Alternative or holistic medicine is certainly nothing new.  Herbs and poultices were studied and used long before modern medicine. As strides were made in the medical field we began relying more and more on pills and injections to relieve our aches and pains.  And, thank God for modern medicine. Many lives have been saved by miracle drugs and surgical procedures. 

But somewhere along the way, the twain did meet and today we combine medical discoveries with a holistic approach to ensuring better health for ourselves, our family and even our pets.   

Message therapy, acupuncture and meditation are no longer foreign terms to us. Tai Chi, yoga, diet and exercise all play a role in healthy lifestyles.  And, of course, eating organic is not a fad, but a way to help control what goes into our bodies.

Sound therapy is a little newer to me and perhaps to you.

I asked Denae how she got involved in vibroacoustic therapy.  Her answer was simple, “I have always loved sound.” “I loved sound even as a child when I played the piano,” she said.

We all know the power of music in evoking emotions. And we have learned that emotions have a physical effect on our bodies. We also know that relaxation and relieving stress are proven tools in making us feel better and helping our bodies heal.

Here is what happens in a session with Denae.  You are fully clothed, removing only your shoes.  (It is suggested that you wear comfortable, loose fitting clothing.)  You lie down on the table— a comfortable massage table that has been fitted with electronic devices and a comfy cover.  Aroma therapy adds to the pleasurable experience, if you choose.  Head phones and eye mask block out the world as you begin to relax and meld with the melodic sounds.  

“People have different experiences during the session,” Denae explained. Some see colors, others sleep. I had the sensation of being enveloped and wanting to sink deeper into the comfort I was feeling.  An extended benefit was a better night’s sleep following the session.

Vibroacoustic therapy is one of the many services offered at Westside Wellness Center located at 4711 Westside Drive. Call 214-207-4702 or email for an appointment or to tour the facility.

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Carol Manzetti

Carol Manzetti will be at Central Christian Church on Thursday, March 28 at 2 p.m. to share her knowledge of non-toxic skin care and household cleansers that can create a healthier environment for you, your family and pets.   

 Have you ever wondered if the sweet floral aromas that fill our homes, infuse our laundry and saturate our skin, could be making us sick?  Are there toxins associated with scented candles and diffusers, fabric softeners and dryer sheets and perfume and body wash?

We have known for a long time that the insecticides we spray on our fruits and vegetables are not good for us and that the poisons we use on our yards can kill pesky insects, ugly weeds and our pets.

Carol Manzetti has been practicing the use of safer products in her own beauty regimen and household cleaning routine for several years.  A miscarriage prompted her to examine more closely the effects of the environment on her life.

“People often become more aware of environmental toxins during a critical point in their life,” Carol said.

For instance, the birth of a baby or trying to conceive frequently makes people more cognizant of harmful external factors. How many people have given up the life-threatening habit of smoking cigarettes because “you can’t smoke around the baby”?  Or maybe the shattering diagnosis of a serious illness such as breast cancer or a chronic condition like inflammatory arthritis cause people to ask the question, “what am I putting into my body?”  

 “There is no one culprit. That would be too simplistic,” Carol said. “However, there are endocrine disrupting chemicals in many of the products that we use over and over every day, and that is where changes can make a difference,” she added.

Carol is also the first to concede that people cannot live in a bubble.  She has lived in both America and Europe and as a flight attendant, continues her world-wide travels. But changes can be made to diminish the stress we put on our bodies by the addition of everyday items that are not good for us.

Come hear what Carol has to say about natural products for personal use and your home and garden. You will leave with tips on how you can make your space a safer place.  For more information call the church office at 214-526-7291.

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You are invited to lunch

Palm Sunday Lunch is an annual tradition at Central Christian Church.  If you are a member or just visiting you won’t want to miss this lovely springtime celebration that follows morning worship.  All are welcome!

The menu is traditional “Easter-type fare” featuring ham, scalloped potatoes and green vegetables. Mary Ann Duckworth, one of Central’s favorites cooks, will be in the kitchen preparing the delicious meal.  The church fellowship halll will be transformed into a lovely dining room. 

The Disciples Women go all out preparing dessert specialties and the table of sweet endings is a sight to behold and enjoyed.  Favorites like banana pudding, red velvet cake, chocolate with strawberries, and coconut cake will tempt the strongest of wills.  

Plan to attend and bring your family.  There is no set price for lunch, but donations are appreciated and will be collected at the door as this is a big fund-raiser for the many out-reach programs and charities that the Disciples Women’s Ministries support throughout the year.  

The organization makes monetary contributions to local charities and many throughout Texas.  They offer hands-on support as well as donations to Dallas’ Juliette Fowler Communities, Austin Street Center, Genesis Women’s Shelter, Maple Lawn Elementary School and more.

Morning worship is at 11 a.m. and lunch will be at noon on April 14.  For more information, call the church office at 214-526-7291.

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Join Central Christian Church to discuss Brené Brown’s bestseller, “The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You're Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are.”

Brené Brown is an American research professor in The Graduate College of Social Work at the University of Houston and her book “The Gifts of Imperfection” is a motivational and inspiring guide to wholehearted living. It was recently named by Forbes as one of the five books that will change your life.

The book club, led by Rev. Dr. Ken Crawford, will meet for one hour on Tuesday evenings starting March 19th at 5:30 and Wednesdays, March 20th at 12 noon for a five-week period.

Wednesday’s noon discussion is a “brown bag” affair, so bring a sack lunch and get double use of your time.  Beverages will be provided for both sessions.

Book clubs are fun and informative, plus you never know what interesting folks you might meet in the group.

Call the church office at 214-526-7291 for more information or to sign-up.

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Cara Gilger

The March meeting of the Disciples Women of Central Christian Church met Tuesday in the church parlor. Guest speakers were Rev. Cara Gilger and Kirsten Burch.

With over 15 years of experience in serving churches and congregations, Cara has cultivated a strong professional reputation with proven skills in networking, church growth, and creative and sustainable visionary planning. She shared some of her ideas about today’s churches—how they have changed and what they need to be welcoming to all.

Kirsten is a master teacher and yoga therapist who holds an impressive list of certifications in the practice of yoga, holistic services and lifestyle. A strong supporter of holistic medicine, Kirsten teaches traditional yoga, Ayurveda, meditation, Yoga Nidra and more. In the wellness center, classes in tai chi, diet, nutrition and counseling will be offered. Kirsten is the project manager for the Wellness Center that is opening upstairs at Central.

Following the meeting, the women enjoyed lunch in fellowship hall.  Pastor Ken Crawford was “executive chef” for the luncheon, preparing tasty dishes like pasta salad, soup and toasted crostini.  Lavanga Latika served a vegan Shepherd’s Pie for those who do not eat meat and dairy.  The star of Pastor Ken’s culinary skills were strawberry crepes.  Everyone was impressed and upcoming events will likely include a cooking class on crepe making much like the popular instant pot classes that were held last fall.  A hearty thank you is extended to Grady Quick and Chris Kahlmorgan who helped serve the delicious meal, as well as to the visitors who attended the meeting.

If you want more information on all that is happening at Central visit the website or call the church office at 214-526-7291.

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"Welcome to Bourbon Street" Ken Crawford

In preparation for Lent, Central Christian Church celebrated Mardi Gras Sunday morning.

Guest minister Rev. Cara Gilger delivered the sermon “Improv and the Art of Faith” while a Jazz Trio from the University of North Texas performed “Swing Low Sweet Chariot,” “Shall We Gather at The River” and “When the Saints Go Marching In.”

Following the service, the congregation gathered in Fellowship Hall for a feast fit for King Rex himself. Red beans and rice, Shrimp Creole, Chicken Andouille casserole and coleslaw were served along with Frank’s famous hush puppies.  Dessert was King Cake, Pancake bread and pralines.

Central may be the oldest continuously operating church in Dallas, but it proves over and over again that it is “young at heart.” Church in the Dog Park draws paws and their people the first and third Sunday of the month at 9 a.m. and traditional service is held in the sanctuary at 11 a.m. on Sunday mornings. More new things are happening all the time like co-working space, the upstairs wellness center and the music and drama camp for kids this summer. Visit the website for more information.  All are welcome!