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Here’s a roundup of upcoming events, presentations and opportunities to engage the culture for the common good in Alaska.



A former sniper for Yasser Arafat’s Palestinian Liberation Order will be in Alaska later this month to share his dramatic conversion story, which eventually led him to faith in Christ.

At age 17, Tass Saada become a sniper for the PLO. At one time a chauffeur for Yasser Arafat, and a Muslim immersed in anti-Israeli activity, he eventually returned to America, started a family, and converted to Christianity. In three separate events in Alaska, Tass will share his story and describe the motivations and aspirations of those who live in the Middle East, while also outlining a peaceful solution.

Tass will first speak Oct. 29, 7 p.m., at Change Point Church in Anchorage. The next night he will be at Farm Loop Community Center in Palmer for a 6:30 p.m. presentation. The final talk will be Oct. 31, 11 a.m., at Alaska Bible College in Palmer.



Reasonable Faith Anchorage is a group that wishes to interact with, challenge, and grow together in the knowledge of God and defend the Christian worldview. Inspired by the idea that all Christians should be ready to give an intelligent reason for their faith, the group seeks to study the Christian faith, and at times other worldviews, through the lenses of science, philosophy, biology and history.

Reasonable Faith meets in Anchorage on the second Thursday of each month, from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm., at Coffee and Communitas (12100 Old Seward Highway). All who seek out the truth, specifically the truth of Christianity, are invited to join in the collegial and cordial academic discussions. This includes Christians, agnostics, atheists, and those of other religions. For more information, visit the group’s Facebook Page or send an email to



After spending 25 years serving in a former Soviet gulag town, Father Michael Shields will bring a unique pro-life perspective to an upcoming event in Anchorage.

Shields spent decades working with Russian women who suffered after choosing abortion. His presentation will provide a step-by-step explanation of the pro-life position for any audience – religious or secular. The talk will look at how to simplify the pro-life philosophy and show why it is scientifically and philosophically sound. It will also address how to answer some of the major objections to the pro-life position. Shields maintains that anyone can speak confidently about the pro-life position if offered some basic training.

Hosted by the Anchorage chapter of Catholics United for the Faith, the event is free and open to the public. It will take place Oct. 24 in the upper room banquet hall at Gallo’s Mexican Restaurant in Anchorage (8615 Old Seward Hwy.). The talk begins at 7 p.m. with doors opening at 6:30 p.m. for those who wish to order food and drinks. The evening will include a 45-minute presentation, followed by a question and answer session until 8:30 p.m.


Project Rachel is a confidential support group for post-abortive women and others who have been impacted by abortion. This ministry of the Archdiocese of Anchorage is open to all faith backgrounds and is free and open to the public. For more information, call the group’s confidential phone line at 297-7781 or toll-free (866) 434-3344.



The pro-life Community Pregnancy Center in Anchorage has received a new ultrasound machine to assist pregnant Alaskan women. As part of the machine’s installation, nurses receive three days of training. During that time, the center needs pregnant mothers to volunteer as “models” who allow nurses to peek at their babies. The center especially needs to do ultrasounds on very small babies, but nurses practice their skills on unborn babies of any age.

The ultrasound was provided by a local council of the Knights of Columbus, a pro-life Catholic men’s organization.

“We are grateful to the many donors and regular supporters who help us on a daily basis,” the said Mary Healy, clinical director for CPC Anchorage. “And to the Knights of Columbus who have been instrumental in making the new machine a reality.”

Ultrasound volunteers are needed Oct. 23-24 for 30-minute appointments. Those interested can call Healy at (907) 360-3675 or email The CPC also needs to feed nurses and staff during the training sessions. Local church groups are invited to cook and provide lunch for 12 people on either Oct. 23 or Oct. 24. For more information, contact Healy.



Adult and Teen Challenge, a faith-based, residential discipleship program for those suffering from addictions, is holding its annual fundraiser later this month. The group works to restore hope to those who suffer from addiction as well as other serious, life-controlling issues.

“We help people to become mentally sound, emotionally balanced, socially adjusted, physically well, and spiritually alive,” the group’s website explains.

The year-long residential program provides a faith-based education that allows the outreach to present numerous topics that expose, challenge, and direct men and women out of their addictions and into their recovery, while earning a certificate of graduation. Participants also take part in various vocational training activities, including pursuing certification in multiple departments.

The upcoming gala is the group’s premier fundraising event, celebrating freedom from addiction and generating support for the students currently in its programs.

The gala begins at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 19. Doors open at 5 p.m. for registration and silent auction. The dinner and auction event will be at ChangePoint in Anchorage (6689 Changepoint Drive). Tickets are $100 per seat, or $800 for a table of eight. Click here for more information.



“Contending for the Faith” is the title of two upcoming fall fundraising banquets for the Alaska Family Council/Action. The group is one of the largest pro-life and pro-family organizations in the state. It works to promote political candidates and laws that affirm the sanctity of human life, traditional marriage, parental rights and religious liberties, among other issues.

Tickets for events in Fairbanks and Anchorage are now available. The Fairbanks event is on Friday, Oct. 25. The next night a similar banquet will take place in Anchorage.

The events feature two speakers. Louisiana State Representative Katrina Jackson, a Democrat, spearheaded an initiative in her state to ensure that activist judges will never be able to use their state constitution to promote and pay for abortions. Isabella Chow will also speak. She came under sharp criticism for simply expressing her view, as a student senator at the University of Cal-Berkely, regarding Biblical sexuality and marriage. Click here for more information about how to attend or sponsor these events.



The FYNDout Free Pregnancy Center in Fairbanks will host its fall banquet fundraiser on Oct. 23 at 6 p.m. at the Westmark Hotel. According to a notice about the event, it is “dedicated to celebrating the wonder of life.” Guest speakers include Derrick and Julie Tennant from the Love Chromosome. To RSVP, call (907) 455-8255 or click here.



Each year Anchorage’s Community Pregnancy Center serves the community by providing personal care, helpful resources, and hope through Jesus Christ to women facing pregnancy decisions in Alaska.
The pro-life outreach is hosting its fall fundraising dinner on Friday, Oct. 25, at Grace Christian School in Anchorage. The event will include a meal and entertainment along with opportunities to financially support the center’s mission. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the program begins at 7 p.m. Tables of 8 and individual seats are available. Attendees are encouraged to register as seats are limited.

Special guests for the evening will be a sibling duo, Derrick and Julie Tennant, from “The Love Chromosome.” Derrick was a promising athlete who suddenly went into a coma for three days. He then had to undergo brain surgery which left him paralyzed on the left side of his body. Julie is Derrick’s sister; she was born with an extra chromosome meaning she has Down Syndrome. They have both chosen to embrace life and use their personal circumstance to bless others. Click here for more information or to register.


A docudrama on the incredible life of Saint Faustina will show in two Anchorage theaters later this month. The film, “Love and Mercy: Faustina,” traces the life of an unknown religious sister in the 1930s who lived in an age marked by conflict, despair, lack of respect for human life and dignity. Saint Faustina reportedly experienced dramatic visions of Christ calling mankind to “turn with trust to my mercy.” The film will show for one night only, Oct. 28, in more than 700 movie theaters across the United States. In Anchorage the movie shows at both Century 16 Theaters and Regal Tikahtnu at 7 p.m.



Alaska Bible College in Palmer is hosting its second annual Apologetics Conference. This year the college has partnered with Ratio Christi, ChangePoint Church and Clear Water Church to present the conference which is titled: “Reasons for the Faith: Engaging Today’s Culture.”

Plenary speakers include Dr. Corey Miller, president and CEO of Ratio Christi and Dr. Travis Dickinson, professor of philosophy and Christian apologetics at Scarborough College. The conference talks will explore questions like, “Why do students walk away from the faith?” and “Is the Bible really God’s Word” and “Is Jesus down with doobies?” Other presentations are titled: “Is God a moral monster?” and “Where has all the wisdom gone?” Additional talks will be provided by local pastors and teachers. The conference includes the option to purchase multiple meals including a special dinner with the plenary speakers. Click here to sign up for meals. Click here to see the full speaker list and schedule for the upcoming conference.



The fall campaign of 40 Days for Life is underway in Anchorage and Soldotna where pro-life advocates are peacefully praying outside of Planned Parenthood clinics. The vigil runs until Nov. 3 in Anchorage and Nov. 6 in Soldotna.

For more information about how to participate in the Anchorage vigil, contact organizer Patrick Martin at (907) 232-2211 or email him at or click here.

For information about the Soldotna vigil, call Beck Hinsberger at 252-2953 or Velvet Danielson at 252-8051. Click here for more information.

Upcoming presentations and events to engage the culture in Alaska

Joel Davidson
Joel is Editor-in-Chief of the Alaska Watchman. Joel is an award winning journalist and has been reporting for over 24 years, He is a proud father of 8 children, and lives in Palmer, Alaska.