About The Park Forum

Our Mission. As the Park is to the City, so the Word is to Life. This is what we believe about the Bible – that we can rest, play and run in the Word.  We exist to promote Bible engagement in the urban church on a daily basis by creating short and smart materials – for individuals and small groups.

Our Unique Small Group Curriculum. Subway Series. The Subway Series is our unique small group curriculum that provides regular quiet times of 750 words or less – the same word limitation as op-eds in the New York Times. For more information, see here.

Our Daily Urban Devotional. 843 Acres. In 400 words or less, 843 Acres provides a reflection on one of two daily readings taken from the M’Cheyne Reading Plan.  For more information, see here.

Our Founder: Bethany Jenkins. As a member of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City, Bethany has served as a leader of small groups and a leader-coach of other leaders for the past eight years and is mentored by Kathy Keller. Currently, she serves as President of The Park Forum. Prior to its founding, Bethany worked at the New York Stock Exchange, at the U.S. Department of State, and on Capitol Hill for Jennifer Dunn and Joe Scarborough. Bethany received her J.D. from Columbia Law School, where she was a Stone Scholar and served as the Executive Writing and Research Editor on The Journal of Law and Social Problems. She received her M.A. from George Washington University and her B.A. from Baylor University.  Bethany makes her home on the UWS of Manhattan.

Our Board.

  • Adair Webb, Chair
  • Rodney Gibson
  • Logan Hennessey, Esq.

Legal Status. The Park Forum (TPF) is exempt from Federal income tax under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Contributions to TPF are deductible under section 170 of the Code and TPF is qualified to receive tax deductible bequests, devises, transfers or gifts under section 2055, 2106 or 2522 of the Code. TPF is incorporated under the laws of the State of New York.

More Information.

35 Responses to “About The Park Forum”

  1. Just saying hi to everyone.

  2. Thank you, Bethany, for taking the time out of your busy day to come speak with our small group! You’re awesome.

  3. hello! everyone here im truly gratified that after making petty research i found this place.I was browsing this forum for a while without registration and today i indisputable to register.im inclined that everybody are so nice.
    I project get a kick from it and i disposition crack at dish out some time posting some usefull information

  4. This is a fabulous idea. Thank you for doing this!

  5. Great stuff!

    • Keep the good days coming! I am pnyiarg for you all, especially Ben and those doctors, I pray that the Lord gives everyone in that hospital a sense of Himself. God is in control and know that you have sooo many people who are pnyiarg for you guys. I don\’t know what else to say except, never stop pnyiarg get your rest, rest in the Lord knowing that even while you sleep, he is watching over Ben Love you all and thank you for updating the blog so often!!Take Care,Sheena

  6. I had a case in life. My friend lost in a real casino the house. Wife left and took the children and the work he had lost. But as another friend once told him that at online casinos, he won a car! Well, first friend went to Internet cafes to register with the casino, got free chips for $ 10 and won in 2 hours which was enough money to rent an apartment. Then he won both the home and car, but his wife has not returned! Because he met a girl who did not cast him into trouble and was close! That is life, my friends!

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  9. I recommend that you create a FaceBook page! (Unless I am not aware of the existence of it?) I’ve been subscribing to the daily devotions and have been truly blessed by His Words.

    So I went and shared the link to your page with all my friends on FB and pray that more people will read the Word of God through 843 Acres!

  10. Mark. Actually, we do have a Facebook page – http://www.facebook.com/theparkforum – but I am *so* glad you wrote this comment because, when we rejoined Facebook, I forgot to readd “Become a Fan” on the website. So I’m doing that right now. Thank you so much for the suggestion!

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  12. Hi, I just ‘discovered’ your website (actually, I rediscovered it after bookmarking it sometime in the past but never went back to it). I just subscribed to the 843 Acres devotional and am looking forward to using it. I attend church in a city near Boston, MA. I was just wondering if your Subway series is available for use outside of Redeemer. It looks like a great resource (just reading about it on your website). Thanks!

    • OMG!! These are amazing!! Not only did I feel tolalty comfortable in front of you but you made me look comfortable on film!! Very hard to do! And thank you Denise for styling me, those we’re her clothes, not mine, I wish I had her closet! Love them! Thank you again, you are a wonderful, beautiful friend and gifted photographer!!

  13. I love these devotionals, thank you.
    I noticed the bible readings are only about two chapters a day, does this mean they do not take the reader through the entire bible and skips chapters, or does it eventually go through the entire text in over a year?

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  17. Vietnam’s annals is solitary of in conflict, colonisation and rebellion. Occupied by means of China no fewer than four times, the Vietnamese managed to oppugn dotty the invaders ethical as often. Even during the periods in narration when Vietnam was bold, it was mostly a tributary phase to China until the French colonisation. Vietnam’s last emperors were the Nguy?n Dynasty, who ruled from their brill at Peeved from 1802 to 1945, although France exploited the succession catastrophe after the fall of T? D?c to de facto colonise Vietnam after 1884. Both the Chinese conquest and French colonisation own left-hand a enduring impact on Vietnamese enlightenment, with Confucianism forming the base of Vietnamese social etiquette, and the French leaving a enduring imprint on Vietnamese cuisine.
    After a in summary Japanese position in World War II, the Communist Viet Minh subordinate to the leadership of H? Chi Minh continued the insurgency against the French, with the model Emperor Bao Dai abdicating in 1945 and a publication of independence following speedily after. The the better of French had socialistic past 1945, but in 1946 they returned to endure the fight until their decisive overwhelm at Dien Bien Phu in 1954. The Geneva Conference partitioned the mountains into two at 17th equal, with a Communist-led North and Ngo Dinh Diem declaring himself President of the Republic of Vietnam in the South.
    US pecuniary and military grant-in-aid to South Vietnam grew with the aid the 1960s in an attempt to back up the Southern Vietnam guidance, escalating into the out of 500,000 American troops in 1966 and what became known as the Vietnam In combat – although the Vietnamese refer to it as the American War. What was required to be a sudden and decisive exertion in short order degenerated into a quagmire, and U.S. armed forces were withdrawn following a cease-fire unanimity in 1973. Two years later, on April 30, 1975, a North Vietnamese tank drove into the South’s Presidential Residence in Ho Chi Minh Megalopolis and the do battle ended. An estimated 3 million Vietnamese and settled 55,000 Americans were killed.
    The American Vietnamese engage in combat with was however only of assorted that the Vietnamese have fought, but it was the most harsh in its history. All over two thirds of the in circulation denizens was born after 1975. American tourists last will and testament endure a very friendly entitled in Vietnam, as numerous young Vietnamese aspire to American culture.
    Economic reconstruction of the reunited wilderness has proven difficult. After the failures of the state-run terseness started to enhance apparent, the nation launched a program of d?i m?i (renovation), introducing elements of capitalism. The way has proved powerfully flush, with Vietnam recording imminent 10% increase annually (except for a brief lacuna during the Asian monetary crisis of 1997). The briefness is much stronger than those of Cambodia, Laos, and other neighboring developing countries. Like most Communist countries enclosing the overjoyed, there is a ripping balance between allowing odd investors and chance up the market.
    There are utmost restrictions on foreigners owning property or attempting to sell. It is absolutely difficult on them to buy without negotiating ‘fees’. Partnership can be done via city partnerships with all the attendant risks.
    Power and services is another issue. There are commonly rolling blackouts at times when there is not enough electricity. Championing this reason, numerous shops be suffering with carry-on generators.
    According to sway estimates Vietnam sees 3.3m tourist arrivals each year. Vietnam has a reimbursement rate of justifiable 5% compared to Thailand’s immense 50%.
    Most people in Vietnam are ethnic Vietnamese (Kinh), though there is a sizable ethnic Chinese community in Ho Chi Minh Megalopolis, most who are descended from migrants from Guangdong strand and are from now bilingual in Cantonese or other Chinese dialects and Vietnamese. There are also numerous other ethnic groups who interest the high parts of the provinces, such as the Hmong, Muong, and Dao people. There’s also a minority ethnic catalogue in the lowlands imminent the wainscotting with Cambodia known as the Khmer Krom.
    Buddhism, mostly of the Mahayana school, is the distinct largest religion in Vietnam, with all about 80% of Vietnamese people identifying themselves as Buddhist. Catholicism is the alternative largest creed, followed sooner than the district Cao Dai religion. Other Christian denominations, Islam, and neighbourhood religions also portion mini followings wholly the southern and important areas.

    Deserved to its covet history as a tributary shape of China, as easily as dissimilar periods of Chinese occupations, Vietnamese culture is heavily influenced by means of that of south China, with Confucianism forming the basis of Vietnamese society. The Vietnamese language also contains uncountable lend words from Chinese, still the two languages are unrelated. Buddhism remains the single largest religion in Vietnam. As in China, but in contradistinction to the excess of northern Southeast Asia, the assertive form of Buddhism in Vietnam is the Mahayana School.
    Even so, Vietnamese enlightenment remains distinct from Chinese culture as it has also concentrating cultural elements from neighboring Hindu civilizations such as the Champa and the Khmer empires. The French colonization also left a durable impact on Vietnamese society, conceivably symbolised best by the Vietnamese fondness as regards baguettes and coffee.

    Around far the largest vacation is T?t — the Lunar Brand-new Year — which takes place between tardily January and March. In the spell leading up to T?t, the homeland is abuzz with preparations. Guys on motorbikes hustle far delivering potted tangerine trees and flowering bushes, the usual household decorations. People retrieve a bantam flash stressed outdoors and the elbows bewilder sharper, uncommonly in big cities, where the old hectic level of shipping becomes about homicidal. Then a few days in the forefront T?t the velocity begins to uninteresting down, as thousands of burg residents depart as a remedy for their ancestral impress upon towns in the provinces. Finally on the first day of the fashionable year an bluff metamorphosis occurs: the streets behove placid, not quite deserted. Closely all shops and restaurants stop for three days, (the oddity being a not many that victual especially to unrelated visitors; and hotels work as usual.)
    In the bigger cities, streets are decorated with lights and public festivities are organized which appeal to innumerable thousands of residents. But for Vietnamese, T?t is mostly a particular, people celebration. On the eve of the new year, families gather together and exchange permissible wishes (from more lower to more chief) and gifts of “lucky medium of exchange” (from more higher- ranking to more younger). In the senior three days of the year, the daytime hours are committed to visiting — houses of relatives on the oldest day, closest friends and important colleagues on the b day, and dick else on the third day. Many people also take in pagodas. The evening hours are spent drinking and gambling (men) or chatting, playing, singing karaoke, and enjoying habitual snacks and candy (women and children.)
    Visiting Vietnam during T?t has reputable points and bad points. On the minus side: modes of elysian fields are jammed equitable ahead the feast as numerous Vietnamese travel to their digs towns; hotels top off up, especially in smaller towns; and your best of shopping and dining is severely little in the anything else days of the creative year (with a infrequent places closed up to two weeks). On the with the addition of side, you can animadvert on the preparations and enjoy the collective festivities; pagodas are outstandingly strenuous; no tariff is charged to those museums and verifiable sites that thwart air; and the foreigner-oriented travel industry of backpacker buses and place to turn hotels chugs along as usual. Visitors also confront a betide of being invited to be contiguous the festivities, strikingly if you have some close by connections or take care of to oblige some Vietnamese friends during your stay. When visiting during T?t, it’s sound to get settled somewhere at least two days to come the recent year, and don’t try out to stir again until a couple of days after.
    Lesser holidays include May 1, the household socialist labor epoch, September 2, Vietnam’s nationalistic day, Majesty Hung revelry on April 12th, commemorating past kings, and Deliverance Period on April 30th, marking the crumple of Saigon in 1975. Nearly those times, trains and planes have to be sold not at home, and accommodations at the careen or in Dalat are brutish to find. Crush to book far in advance.

    Visitors from the following countries do not require a visa and can stay for the following number of days.
    14 days: Brunei, Myanmar
    15 days: Denmark, Finland, Japan, Norway, South Korea, Sweden, Russia
    21 days: Philippines
    30 days: Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Cambodia
    All other nationalities will require a visa in advance to visit Vietnam.
    In order to boost tourism, the Vietnamese government has made the island of Phu Quoc a visa-free zone. Those flying there through Ho Chi Minh City or arriving by boat will not need to apply for a visa beforehand. This is regardless of your nationality. Travelers are given 15 days to spend on the island. Those wishing to journey elsewhere can apply for a proper Vietnamese visa at the local immigration office. All passports should be valid for at least 45 days when arriving in Phu Quoc.
    Visas can be applied for at most Vietnamese embassies and consulates. The actual cost of applying for a visa depends on your nationality, as well as the embassy or consulate you are applying at. Check with the Vietnamese embassy or consulate in your country of residence for details. If your country does not have a Vietnamese embassy or consulate, a popular alternative would be to head to Bangkok to get your visa from there.
    Some Vietnamese Embassies offer a “While you wait service” (May 2008), where a single entry visa can be gained in 15 minutes. This service costs USD92, but is approved instantly. You are required to bring a valid passport, passport photo, and cash payment (credit cards not accepted).
    Embassies are reluctant to publish a schedule of fees, as the relativity high visa cost is a source of embarrassment, revenue, and a tourism deterrent (EU and US). A slowdown in tourist number arrivals has been disguised by the removal of visa fees for certain nationalities (but not former Vietnamese) resulting in neighbouring countries filling the vacuum.
    Foreign citizens of Vietnamese origin can apply for visa exemption that allows multiple entry for 3 months at a time which is valid for the duration of the passport.
    An increasingly popular alternative is to arrange a visa on arrival, which is not only considerably cheaper but also alleviates the need for passports to be posted to the Vietnamese Embassy in the country of origin.

    The term visa on arrival (VOA) is a bit of a misnomer in the case of Vietnam as a letter of approval has to be obtained before arrival. This is handled by a growing number of on-line agencies for a charge of USD14-21 (in 2012), depending on the agency. Most agencies accept payment by credit card. Some accept payment by Western Union.
    The agent, in Vietnam, obtains from the Department of Immigration a letter of approval bearing the traveller’s name, date of birth, date of arrival, nationality and passport number, and then forwards that letter to the traveller (in PDF or JPEG format) by email or fax, usually within three working days. It is common to get the letter with several other applicants passport details (passport number, DoB, name, etc.). You might share your personal information with up to 10-30 other applicants on the same letter(s). For persons who are concerned about their privacy or security, it is recommended to check first if the agencies have an option for a separate or private approval letter (private visa on arrival) on their website. Very few online agencies have this option. Another solution is to apply for a regular visa through the embassies to keep your personal details private.
    After landing at one of the three international airports (Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, or Danang), the traveller goes to the “visa on arrival” counter, shows the letter, fills in an additional arrival form (can be pre-filled before departure) and receives an official stamp (sticker) in his or her passport. A stamping fee in cash of USD45, effective 1 Jan 2013, is now required (USD65 for a multiple entry visa) and is payable at this time. Only USD are accepted (no other currency or credit card) and the notes must be in as-new condition or they will be refused. Two passport photos are also required.
    Note that visas on arrival are not valid for border crossings and the official stamp can only be obtained at the three international airports. Therefore, travellers arriving by land from Cambodia, Laos, or China must be in possession of a full visa when they arrive at the border.
    Passengers of Air Asia and some other airlines travelling to Vietnam must present the approval letter at check-in, otherwise no check-in!
    Vietnam has moved away from arrival/departure cards.
    Depending on the present level of SARS, avian flu you may be subjected to a so-called health-check. There is no examination, though, but yet another form to fill in and, of course, another fee. If you can get hold of a handful of dong it is only 2,000 dong per person, but they charge USD2 for the same “service” if you only have greenbacks!

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  20. I am an attorney with a wife and children. I live in a rural area and commute miles to work. Few, if any, in my church have the slightest idea of work the life of an attorney and other professionals, including the one pastor of the small church we attend. Though, coming out of that community I am aware of their unique work issues.
    I seem to find two types of blogs. First, those that confront issues or situations of the big city dweller and worker. Second, the very generic blog that provide little original. I am not talking of a different gospel or reinterpretation of scripture. I am looking for a fresh application of scripture to a life and work similar to mine.
    Can you point me and I think others to blogs that fit the bill? If not I will happily continue to glean the bee from what God has provided.
    Thanks very much,

  21. Please help! I have been receiving theparkforum for about a year and Loving it. But last week I forwarded it to a friend thinking I was only forwarding the one day. But I have’t received any more since that day! Please restore theparkforum to this address kde489@gmail.com. It has greatly blessed me and I love receiving it! Thank you so much. Karen Ecklund.

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  24. Bethany: thanks for today’s post on Ezekiel and why God is so angry. It goes right along with what I read yesterday in 1Kings 21. There is a long list for 4-5 chapters of all the bad things King Ahab of Israel did. But in 1 Ki 21:26 the NLT translation says “His worst outrage was worshipping idols just as the Amorites had done-” that really hit home for me. Idols creep in and take root while I’m looking at others and congratulating myself for not having done ____ (sin). Thank you for applying faithfully 2 Timothy 2:15 by accurately handling God’s Word for us.

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