I was in the service at Halifax Deep Water on January 27th and brought greetings to our newest Atlantic District church. Pastor A.J. Thomas brought the message as he challenged the people about the importance of harmony and unity when you’re in the boat together. Deep Water is definitely “under sail” and has a great future. They meet in a theatre in downtown Halifax. There were 62 people in church the Sunday Joanne and I were there. Pastor A. J. and Kelly Thomas are giving good leadership to our newest congregation whose average age is in the late 20’s. The Thomas’s have two sons, Micah and Isaac. Micah took part in his first communion during the service which brought a lot of joy to his parents. We enjoyed our conversation and meal with A. J. and Kelly following the service.
Pastor Wayne Robertson, Houlton Wesleyan Church, just started his fourth Pastor’s Study Group for Men which runs from the end of January to early May. This is a small group led by Pastor Wayne and its focus is discipleship. They choose a book like Fresh Wind Fresh Fire by Jim Cymbala or More Than Forgiveness by Steve DeNeff and do a study of it over the four or five months. This group meets at 5:30 AM (that’s not a misprint – AM!) and this year kicked off with 17 men in attendance. There is a good mix of guys ranging in age from their mid-20’s to mid-60’s. The study runs one hour followed by breakfast, and everybody is on their way to work by 7:30 AM.
I met with the Black’s Harbour LBA last evening to discuss their up-coming pastoral change. Pastor Bruce and Roxie Cheney will transition from their pastoral service in Black’s after eight years to assume the caretaker responsibilities of Beulah Campground. They will be on-site by June 16th and will work with Garry and Joanne Campbell through Beulah. (The Campbells are retiring following Beulah Camp having served as the caretakers since the summer of 1999. They will live in Brown’s Flat, NB). I had a good meeting with the LBA as we begin the pastoral search process, and prior to the meeting I enjoyed a time of fellowship with the Cheneys and their daughter, Heidi, over a wonderful supper of fresh scallops and fish. Living near the sea provides some wonderful blessings!
Pastors Michael and Tammy Hutton, Harbour Wesleyan in Sydney, NS, have had to make some tough choices. The death of Michael’s sister (Wendy) and her husband left four boys orphaned. The Huttons spent three weeks over Christmas with the four boys and Michael’s parents in Texas. In light of the circumstances, they feel led to move to Lubbock, TX to do all they can for Michael’s parents, and their nephews. The care of their nephews along with their own four small children is a huge undertaking. They need your prayers. This move will also impact the Sydney church plant. Pray for this time of transition within the church as well.
Presque Isle Wesleyan Church is hosting a Point of Grace Simulcast for women and girls. The date is February 23rd from 8 AM to 4 PM EST. The cost is $10 at the door. Please contact the Presque Isle Wesleyan Church if you need further information.
Padre Jennifer Gosse, Chaplain with CFB Halifax, has been tasked with recruiting clergy to serve as Cadet Camp Chaplains this summer in Greenwood, Gagetown, and Cornwallis. They are looking for ordained/commissioned clergy who are in good standing with their church. Most full-time pastors would not have the time to take on the 7-week contract being offered, but there may be some part-time or retired people, or Reserve Ordained Ministers, or Ministers without appointment who would have the time and interest for this kind of summer work. If you have interest, please contact the Padre at firstname.lastname@example.org
The annual Atlantic District Snowbird Breakfast will be held Saturday, March 15, 8:30 AM, at the Country Kitchen Restaurant in Brooksville, Florida. Several have inquired if this was going to happen this year. I will be attending the DS Institute on March 17 which will be held in Orlando. In addition, all district superintendents have been invited to attend all “open sessions” of the General Board (GB) when it meets at the same location March 18-20. The discussion of General Conference memorials will be of special interest. This will allow the DS’s not serving on the GB to hear first-hand the rationale for memorials recommended and not recommended, and be able to give more informed answers to questions asked by our delegates attending General Conference this June. So, Joanne and I will look forward to greeting all of our Atlantic District snowbirds at the breakfast the weekend prior to this week of meetings.
About 2½ weeks ago, Joanne and I, along with Pastor Don and Janet Ingersoll, shared a meal and an evening with Pastor Dwayne and Melodie Hopkins. They both are in good spirits and confident in the Lord’s provisions as Dwayne deals with lymphoma. He began chemotherapy treatments January 24th and will have them every three weeks into the month of May. His lymphoma is not curable but it is treatable. Many of you know Dwayne and Melodie and we ask you to keep them in your prayers. Pastor Dwayne has established a Caring Bridge webpage and you can go to www.caringbridge.org/visit/dwaynehopkins to stay up-dated on his progress.
Rev. Ken Foote went in for his 7th round of chemo two weeks ago and just got out of the hospital. He has had some problems with his kidneys due to the chemo treatments. The doctors are going to give him a week’s break before continuing on with further treatments. Ken and his wife, Judy, feel that they are at a crossroads with the treatment and may choose not to continue with chemo. This is a tough time for them. Please join your prayers with theirs as they seek the Lord in knowing what to do.
Mrs. Ida Mae Bradley died February 1, 2008 in her 102nd year. She was a charter member of the King’s Valley Wesleyan Church and instrumental, along with her family, in helping to launch the church in its early days. Lev Bradley, well-known for short-term district missions projects, is her son. Rev. Steve Bradley, who pastored a number of years on the Atlantic District, is her grandson. The funeral will be held on Wednesday, February 6th at Kennebecasis Select Community Funeral Home. We extend our condolences to Lev and his wife, Iva, and their family connection.
The lobby has been expanded and opened up, and the new sanctuary at Moncton Wesleyan Church is moving toward its final stages of completion. The attendees from both Sunday morning services will come together on Celebration Sunday, February 24th, for one large, combined service to be held from 10:30 – 11:45 AM. The Dedication Service will be held May 4th at 3:00 PM, with Dr. John C. Maxwell as the special speaker.
“The two most powerful warriors are patience and time.” – Leo Tolstoy