Yesterday was the second Sunday of Advent. I trust wherever you worshipped yesterday, much was made of Jesus.
General Superintendent will be in the district this week for a meeting with the DBA in Fredericton on Thursday and Friday. There will be many items of significance to be determined and a major focus of the meeting will be the process of selection/election of a District Superintendent at District Conference in 2014. On Thursday morning, prior to the beginning of the DBA meeting, Dr Lyon will accompany me on visits to our three Fredericton churches.
Truro celebrated their 65th Anniversary yesterday with former pastor Denn Guptill as special speaker. The church was founded by 1948 by Rev. N. E. Trafton. This year is also the 25th Anniversary of the dedication of their present building which was built when Denn was the pastor. They also hosted a banquet and a sold out “Evening of Christmas Music” on Saturday evening. Congrats all around.
Fredericton Crosspoint has received a special white offering each year for several years to help to brighten the Christmas of a member of our tribe as well as an overseas worker. Last week they raised more than $3,000 for this purpose – well done. An idea other churches could adopt without doubt – it truly is more blessed to give than to receive.
Last year our Mount Pearl Solid Rock church prayed on every street in their city and marked the street on a city map. When all the streets had been visited, the map was laminated. Last week Pastor Stuart Marples and two members of the church represented the group at a city council meeting where the map was presented to the mayor and council. They were very well received by the mayor and council. Another creative example of community connection.
Hammonds Plains Cornerstone baptized 12 candidates last week. Baptisms are an undeniable testimony to new life in Christ. PTL!
I met with the LBA at Maple Ridge last week as we work through the major physical challenge facing Pastor Nick Graham. Excellent meeting with a very good outcome for the next several weeks. Thanks to Assistant Pastor Mike Agrell for stepping up to shoulder extra responsibilities during this season. Please continue to be in prayer for Nick, his family, Mike, the church and for God’s hand to be active in this situation. Nick will be in Halifax for extensive further testing in mid January.
The district office staff and spouses shared a Christmas lunch together last week. It was a very enjoyable time and a bit unique to have both a former and present DS at the office staff lunch.
Head of Millstream recently held a Community Christmas Banquet in the local rec centre. This was a very stretching event for the church which only averaged 12 in worship last year and had 53 at the banquet at which Pastor Vince Robertson shared a 7 minute gospel message. Attendance this fall is running in the 20’s – close to 100% increase. Go Vince!
Gloria and I were at Bangor Pathway yesterday morning for worship and I also met with the LBA. Tony Stevens is serving as pulpit supply presently and Pathway will be in the search process for a pastor during the normal cycle in the spring.
Gloria and I dropped in to visit our dear friends, Conard and Debby Symonds, on our way back from Bangor. The entire pastoral staff and spouses from Crosspoint came by to sing a Christmas carol and offer prayer. It was a special moment for all.
THOT: “I am fundamentally an optimist. Whether that comes from nature or nurture, I cannot say. Part of being optimistic is keeping one’s head pointed toward the sun, one’s feet moving forward. There were many dark moments when my faith in humanity was sorely tested, but I would not and could not give myself up to despair. That way lays defeat and death.” – Nelson Mandela