It’s Monday Again
Framework (Bud Fancy) had a special celebration of church families day this weekend in both Saturday and Sunday services with nine baptisms, six baby dedications, and a children’s musical presentation. Total attendance was 511 which is the first time over 400 since the pandemic shut-down in March 2020.
- Three of the baptisms were conducted by Revs. Jason & Christine Blaikie as they led their children into the waters of this public testimony – PTL! Nothing is richer for parents in ministry than the high privilege of baptizing our own kids.
In other baptism news, South Church (Tom Cann) celebrated two baptisms this weekend. Tom shared, “One was a lady from the south-end of Yarmouth who described herself as, ‘Always believing in God, but I never understood what that meant. Since coming to South Church I’ve started to understand and decided to give my life to Jesus!'” South Church is only six weeks old – Praise God for transformed lives!
Deep Water (AJ Thomas) was launched 14 years ago this week and this milestone was marked with three baptisms and a big announcement. A warm welcome was extended yesterday to Timothy & McCaila Andrews (pictured above right) who will be joining Deep Water’s pastoral team in the months ahead!
- They will be co-pastoring the launch of the next satellite campus (tentatively in the fall of 2022) in the Beechville-Lakeside-Timberlea suburb of Halifax. They will also share in ministry roles serving the entire Deep Water family over what will soon be three locations – congratulations to the Andrews!
- Deep Water also welcomed Melissa Boyd as the new Halifax Worship Pastor earlier this fall – so great to have her and the Andrews as part of our Atlantic Tribe!
Like Moncton (Joel Gorveatte) did yesterday, Canadian churches celebrated moments of silence in remembrance to honour those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice for our freedoms. And to rev things up a notch, Joel preached an activating message in the current sermon series, Overwhelmed But Not Defeated, with a Ducati Panigale Superbike on display. If bikes are your thing, then CLICK HERE to timestamp 45 minutes and enjoy! We are so blessed by the creative communicators of the Gospel all across our Atlantic region.
And speaking of kicking things up a notch, Easton (Rich Thomas) installed a new live-streaming system last week. Rich shared, “Praise God! This is a huge day for Easton Wesleyan. Last year we had three people make first time decisions watching our less than great online. We are asking and trusting for even greater things.” The Easton family gave generously to make this upgrade possible.
Digby (Andrew Maves) had hundreds of kids through Trunk-n-Treat the end of October. Andrew shared, “We gave them candy and had fireworks and invited them back for more fun as our kids and youth programs get rolling again this week! Lots of fun at DWC.”
- More community bridge-building happened at The Reach (Andy Phillips) as well. Andy shared, “We had a great time at the Trunk-n-Treat and the Treat Retreat last weekend! There were over 235 kids between the two events and lots of fun and candy was passed out – what a great time!”
- Houlton (Wayne Roberton) hosted its 17th Trunk-n-Treat this year! Wayne shared, “We estimate that there were 450-500 children who passed through our parking lot. This continues to be a strong presence in our community. Along with treats, the treat bag includes a CEF track for children and an invite to kid’s church.”
The Ridge (Mike Agrell) recently conducted its own version of Love Week, Off the Ridge Week. In addition to personal acts of service, the church family made 300 treat bags to go to the local elementary school. Mike shared, “We also put together 30 gifts with hand written notes and delivered them to new families in our region since the pandemic began.”
Cornerstone (Denn Guptill) shared the exciting news this week regarding their multi-year village partnership through World Hope International Canada. Denn shared, “Work has begun at the new school in Kenenday, Sierra Leone, that Cornerstone is constructing as part of our village partnership. If you are interested in sponsoring one of the students who will be attending contact Pastor Deborah Gilbert. For $41.00 a month you can help change a child’s life.”
And speaking of partnership with the International Wesleyan Church, I conducted a Zoom orientation this week for 20 team members who will be travelling with me in early December to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the Wesleyan Standard Church of Egypt – insha’Allah! It is an honour to serve alongside National Superintendent Dr. Atef and the more than two dozen pastors who effectively lead their churches in face of ongoing persecution. At least two new churches have been planted during the pandemic.
It’s beginning to look a lot like… preparation for our 14th General Conference! This past week I participated in five Zoom sessions providing an overview with opportunity for input of several key resolutions (we call them Memorials) that will be presented in St. Louis next May. This is the first time in the history of The Wesleyan Church that we have waited six years to gather as the pandemic interrupted our quadrennial rhythm. Please be in prayer for our delegates and for our General Church leaders as we seek God for wisdom in shaping the future of our denomination.
Two Kingdom leaders have recently spoken into the challenges we must overcome in maintaining the purity and power of orthodoxy. CLICK HERE for the final blog in the series offered this fall by James Emery White. CLICK HERE for a poignant post on the hurdles we face in the race ahead. The day in which we serve increasingly requires clarity in knowing what is right and the courage to proclaim and live it!
Points to Ponder
- Living into the “scandal of particularity” will not make life easier for us, but it is an absolute requirement for the faithfulness of our witness. (David Watson)
- There are good reasons for churches to continue to describe themselves as “evangelical,” if by that term they are referencing their historic commitment to the Bible’s authority, the necessity of spiritual conversion, and the felt presence of God in daily life. (Thomas Kidd)
- I have been proud to consider myself a classic, historic Evangelical. And in that sense of the word, I continue to be. (James Emery White)
Mike Tapper and Marc Jolicoeur discuss the “Life Curves” of CCLI songs sung in our churches dating back to 1988. This interesting project has a lot of relevant implications and will soon be published in Christianity Today and Worship Leader Magazine!
NEXT is Global Partners’ mentored cross-cultural immersion experience for young adults. Pass along the NEXT website to anyone in your church who is searching for meaning and their place in God’s kingdom work. Download and share the two-minute NEXT video in your service or in your church newsletters. The best next step for anyone interested is to fill out the inquiry form, and they will be contacted for a follow-up conversation. The website is continually updated with the upcoming internship opportunities for spring, summer and fall. Applications for summer 2022 are being accepted through the end of 2021.
National Multiplication Director Mark Parker posted the first edition of Between the Shorelines this week. This e-publication will share stories of multiplication and how you and your church can engage in this shared mission across our two districts. CLICK HERE to enjoy this first edition which features a daughter-church out of Cornerstone (Denn Guptill) with church planter Drew Owen. CLICK HERE to subscribe for this e-newsletter.
SAVE THE DATE: As announced during A Campfire Chat, District Ministerial will convene at the Valley location of Kings (Brent Ingersoll) on January 19-20, 2022 (more details TBA – begins @ 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday and concludes with the evening rally on Thursday).
The 2021 Atlantic District Journal is now available. CLICK HERE to download.
(Prior District Journals are available from District Office upon request.)
(Prior District Journals are available from District Office upon request.)