It’s Advent Season in the Atlantic Region with style! This Sou’West Nova Scotia Community Christmas tree is made of lobster pot buoys. It is a celebrated reminder of the beginning of lobster fishing season (Dumping Day) typically held on the last Monday of November in Yarmouth and Acadian Shores but likely to be later this week because of weather delays. Our Atlantic churches are filled with people who serve in the fishing industry on both sides of the border and this is an important time to lift them up in prayer for safety and good catches.
God wants to pour out a powerful experience of His touch during our time together at our January Ministerial. I have had countless conversations with Kingdom leaders who are facing off with the most challenging days most have ever known in this extended pandemic season. Our threadbare souls are in need of something only the Master can bring… renewal. Come expecting great things from Him!
All pastors who attend will receive a personal copy of Pete Scazzero’s work on emotional health for leaders which has been game-changing for so many Kingdom undershepherds. If you want an introduction to Pete’s work, here is Carey Nieuwhof’s latest conversation with him.
Ken Banks concluded a 40-day pre-Advent prayer focus this week at Blacks Harbour. Each day offered an “e-blast” of inspiration and direction – so well done in teaching disciples to pray and in calling them to turn to God as the One we can trust. I’m sure Ken would be very open to sharing this resource with you for your church family.
Kings (Brent Ingersoll) celebrated its 40th Anniversary this month by taking a look back at all the amazing things God has done in and through this special church family. Here are just a few highlights:
Your district family is praising God with you and can’t wait to see how God is going to multiply the eternal impact of Kings over the next 40 years!
Hillside (Jay Guptill) kicked off the Advent Season this weekend under the ministry of President Steve Lennox (Kingswood University). Saturday featured a seminar of the big picture of God’s story in Scripture – CLICK HERE for an overview (a great idea for your church in the months ahead!). Once we see the big picture — the main point God wants to communicate to us — we can better understand the details and how they fit together. Sunday’s message gleaned Christmas truth from the role of Elizabeth in the coming of the Christ Child.
Speaking of Kingswood, are you ready for some good news? Steve shared, “As of last Monday, the total indebtedness at Kingswood University was $819,415. Considering that we owed over $6 million just thirteen years ago, this alone is ample reason for rejoicing. In October, the Kingswood Board of Trustees unanimously approved paying off one of our two mortgage notes, for $420,000, using cash reserves. This frees up over $100,000 annually in debt service and reduces our total indebtedness to just $385,000, the lowest amount in nearly 25 years!”
I enjoyed leading our final team meeting this week for the 20 member group traveling to Egypt this Wednesday. Our District Director of Global Partners will be sharing in a variety of services through Cairo and Upper Egypt in celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the Wesleyan Standard Church.
Matt Friedman (Kingswood University) is part of this team and will be providing a day of instruction for our Cairo area pastors in conclusion of a three-year partnership between Kingswood and our Egyptian Church. He was also featured earlier this month as Mike MacNeil led a panel discussion on racism and antisemitism with three other Kingswood faculty. CLICK HERE to enjoy this edition of the Open Mike Podcast.
It isn’t every week that two Canadian Wesleyan Pastors are featured in Christianity Today. Way to go Marc Jolicoeur (Moncton) and Mike Tapper (Southern Wesleyan University and former staff pastor at Moncton)! CLICK HERE for their thought-provoking insights into changing trends in local church worship music.
Staff Updates: Ryan Genereaux (The Ridge) and Natalie Gidney (Brazil Lake) have announced their resignations. Ryan & Marleigh will be joining Dale MacDonald’s pastoral team in Woodstock in the New Year and Natalie will conclude service the end of January.
Woods Harbour (Tim Conrad) knows how to love on their pastoral family. They are expecting their third child and Jenna was, “…completely surprised on Saturday by the love and generosity of our church family who threw me a baby shower! We had a TON of fun, great food, great company, and I feel very blessed as I get ready to welcome my little girl! Thanks to all who were involved and to those who sent gifts in the following days. I feel so blessed!” Thank you to all our Atlantic churches who have found meaningful ways to encourage and support our pastoral families during this challenging and often discouraging pandemic season of ministry leadership.
Did you know that tomorrow is Giving Tuesday? Join World Hope on a virtual trip to Liberia to discover what happens when a slum is upgraded into a decent place to live – spend 20 minutes seeing the impact and witness the transforming power of hope in action.CLICK HERE to register for the virtual trip. And don’t forget that all donations are doubled tomorrow until World Hope reaches our Giving Tuesday goal!
Congratulations to Adam & Hope DeMerchant (Lighthouse Church) on Tuesday’s (Nov 23rd) happy arrival of Tilley Judith Joy (7 lbs. 3 oz. – 19.5 inches)! CLICK HERE for this meaningful post by her parents explaining the rich heritage of her names. A very proud papa concluded with this powerful word, “Great women: may we know them, may we be them, may we raise them.”
A great man of God went home to be with the Lord on November 24th. Dr. Alfonso G. Pablo, Sr., General Superintendent Emeritus of The Wesleyan Church of the Philippines, was 82. His life was committed to the cause of Christ and his legacy is a model to emulate. He was a precious gift to the church serving as a local pastor, Bible College teacher & president, national leader & General Superintendent for 16 years, chairman of the Wesleyan World Fellowship, now International Conference of The Wesleyan Church, and in his retirement years authored several books.
Points to Ponder
It’s been two years since we have gathered. Two years! Our January 2020 Ministerial at the Saint John Delta seems like a lifetime ago. We are a people who gather to strengthen in multiple ways both big and small each year and we could have never imagined a world that would not allow us to be together. This 24-hour Ministerial experience has been prayerfully designed to invite the Spirit’s renewal in our hearts as we lean into the beginnings of a post-pandemic ministry context.
(Note to Maine Pastors: A December email will provide more details for those coming across the border. A great deal of pressure is being applied to change on the current Canadian requirement for a molecular COVID test to enter Canada by land and we are hoping this ends by the New Year. If not, registration will be complimentary upon request for our Maine pastors if the pricing for COVID tests remains a necessity.)
This Christmas, why not give a gift that keeps on giving? Caton’s Island is focused on providing a fun, safe, amazing experience that has one purpose, to show the love of Christ to everyone who attends. When you give to Caton’s, as a one-time gift or a monthly recurring gift, you are supporting projects like the Choate Dining Hall Expansion, facility upgrades, maintenance, and overall camp operations. Your gift provides a life-changing experience to campers and staff that attend each year, making your donation a greater impact than you will ever know! All donations go to general operations unless otherwise designated. If you wish to give to a specific project just let us know when making a donation.
Thank you for your generosity – Merry Christmas!
General Conference 2022 would like to feature your church in a video! Executive Director Janelle Vernon (Communications and Administration Division) has extended the following invitation to any local church that would like to participate – here is the announcement from our General Secretary…
As we plan ahead for General Conference 2022 (https://www.wesleyan.org/unleashed), we are anticipating many important decisions to be made; and we are also planning for a time of celebration – celebrating every time a disciple makes a disciple and the church multiplies itself, until The Wesleyan Church has a transforming presence in every zip code/community. One of the best ways to celebrate is with videos showing how your church is transforming lives and communities through the hope and holiness of Jesus Christ.We are inviting YOU to participate by submitting ACTION photos and/or videos clips. Send in your photos and videos of people being baptized and outreach that show your church being the hands and feet of Jesus. We know that there are many creative and unique compassion ministries happening along with the more common efforts like clothing and food giveaways, caring for the vulnerable, providing after-school programs and safe-homes. We would like to feature it all!Thanks for submitting your short videos clips and/or pictures by January 15, 2022, to…