Under Sail

Mini-Sterial 2010: Part of our mandate as a District is to help our churches be healthy, provide resources that equip our leaders and provide opportunities that enable them to be more effective and productive as leaders.  A great opportunity has presented itself and we want to “seize the day.”  Dr. Wayne Schmidt, Vice President of Wesley Seminary at IWU, and the former Senior Pastor of Kentwood Community Church (KCC) in the West Michigan District, is going to be on the campus of BBC in October.  He will be speaking in Chapel on Tuesday, October 19th and Thursday, October 21st.  President Mark Gorveatte has graciously blocked off time with Dr. Schmidt on Tuesday evening and Wednesday (October 19-20) in order to make that time available to the Atlantic District pastors.  I’m very appreciative of him giving us this incredible opportunity to glean insights from someone who has served for many years as a local church pastor and who has a proven track record.  We will have four sessions together including ample time for Q & A.  Information has already gone out to the pastors with additional details.
The Gathering ’11: The Gathering will take place on January 4-7, 2011!  It will be a unique and inspiring 3-day event in God’s presence.  Christian speakers will be sharing God’s Word: Mike Batterson, Mike Smalley, Brenda Salter McNeil, Wayne Schmidt, Keith Loy, Gordon MacDonald and others!  The Atlantic District is offering a scholarship for all A.D. pastors, assistant pastors, and the ordained A.D. ministers who serve at BBC, along with spouses, to attend this event.  Early-bird registration ends October 30th so don’t delay in registering if you plan to attend.
Fredericton – Crosspoint is in the midst of very exciting days!  Lead pastor, Tim Guptill, shares that there have been 60 people give their lives to Christ since May 1st, and 30-35 people have been baptized in that same time frame.  In August, they baptized 12-13 people in the Nashwaak River.  September 19th, they had 430 people in the weekend worship services and baptized five people.  Last Sunday, four people were saved in the first service, and 400 people came to the services so the “400 barrier” is melting away as the church continues to grow.  Two weeks ago, they kicked off a campaign to pay off their debt.  The church purchased land in the last two years for future expansion and wants to be in a position of strength before moving forward.  It’s important to share these things and rejoice together because Jesus said, “This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.” (John 15:8)

Fredericton – Corbett Ave. had 367 folks “come home” to Corbett September 12th, after the summer! Most stayed for the potluck/barbeque that followed.  John Symonds is the Lead Pastor
Pastor Jay Guptill, Dartmouth – Hillside, shares that they started a second Sunday A.M. worship service September 19th and it’s going well.  They are also coming alongside Sackville Wesleyan, where Michael Zottarelli is the pastor, to help their sister church with some of their outreach events.
St. John’s – Avalon: On Sunday September 19th, St. John’s Avalon held their largest outreach event yet – a Community Giveaway.  They collected household goods and gave them away to people in the community who were in need, and also provided a free BBQ.  This was a joint venture with the Rabbittown Theatre, the place where Avalon meets on Sunday mornings.  Pastors Darren & Janel Clark would like to say a huge “Thank You” to everyone who prayed for their Community Event.  It was a great success!  They had a number of items donated by people in the community.  Before the event started, there were a number of people waiting outside the theatre in the parking lot.  Almost everything that had been donated found a home.  People who had just moved into new homes and didn’t have very much, and people who were new to the country, found things they could use.  The Avalon church family also gave away over 140 barbequed hot dogs!  It was a great way to introduce the church to the community in a tangible way, and alert people to the church’s presence in the community – many didn’t even know they were there.  It was also a fantastic experience for those who volunteered.  Avalon was especially appreciative of the support and donations from people at their sister church, Solid Rock, in Mount Pearl, where Stuart Marples is the pastor.
Nackawic Wesleyan is on track to provide three wells in Asia through ‘Gospel for Asia.’  They recently raised $3,400 in a “Well Walk.”  The wells are $1000 each.  Pastor Ryan Farrell reports that this project has been supported several times previously by the congregation.  It is one ministry that goes beyond them to bless many people in Jesus’ Name.  Former pastors, Carl and Evelyn Brewer, began this project with the Nackawic congregation.
Pastor Evelyn Brewer recently suffered a stroke.  She was hospitalized, returned home to recover, but has since been re-admitted to the Dr. Everett Chalmers Hospital in Fredericton.  She is undergoing further tests.  Please keep both Evelyn and her husband, Carl, in your prayers at this time.
Pastor Graham Perry reports that “It’s been an exciting two weeks in a row, with more to come!” at Trinity Wesleyan in Florenceville-Bristol, NB.  Two teen boys were baptized a week ago Sunday, a lady this past Sunday, and another young man will be a candidate in the near future.  Their Missions Faith-Promise giving has increased to nearly $2000/month, which is $900 more per month than what was originally committed!  PTL!
Pastor Nick Graham shares that Maple Ridge Wesleyan averaged 78 in August (lya 68).
Beals Island – Pastor George Woodward: Pastor George had to be hospitalized in the Eastern Maine Medical Center after a serious fall down some steps in his garage in August.  He was out of the pulpit for five Sundays but returned September 12th.  The former pastor, Jesse Merchant, filled in for him while he was away.  We are glad he is doing much better.  In the midst of these difficulties, Pastor George shared some praise notes:  Two people were saved and baptized recently; five or six people are waiting to join the church at the next opportunity; there were 70 people in church on September 12th, and 16 people in the choir; new people are coming to the services; there is a wonderful spirit of fellowship in the church; and the steeple is back on the tower after extensive repairs during the winter months last year.  Pray for this pastor who continues to persevere in spite of personal difficulties, and faithfully proclaims Christ in his community.  And remember this congregation that they would continue to experience the blessing of the Lord.
Full Circle! Many long-time Atlantic District folks will remember the Bethesda Mission Hospital in the former country of Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) where many of our previous missionaries were stationed (Emmetts, Haywoods, Hudsons, Chase and others).  The Wesleyan Church in Bethesda is to be replanted under the leadership of Pastor Nkosilathi Moyo, a young graduate student of Emmanuel Wesleyan Bible College in Swaziland.  (The current church leaders in that area are all over 70 years of age.)  This report comes from Alton McCrea, who recently journeyed to Zimbabwe, met Pastor Moyo and learned that he is the son of a previous pastor there, Elias Moyo.  Interestingly, Alton’s father, Herb McCrea, supported Elias for many years.  Alton was also able to meet the young pastor, Ignatious Sibanda, who he has been supporting for some time at EWBC.  Ignatious will be replanting the Entumbane Wesleyan Church, which was begun many years ago by Dr. Jim Lo, one of our speakers at Beulah Camp in July 2009.  This story is a wonderful reminder that seed sown will continue to bear fruit, even many years down the road, and that together we stand in the gap.  We praise God for the leadership He is raising up for the work of His Kingdom in fields where prayer has been raised for many years on the Atlantic District.
The Saunders Irving Chapel was full September 24th for the Inauguration Ceremony of Rev. Mark Gorveatte as the 11th President of Bethany Bible College. Prior to this appointment, Rev. Gorveatte served for over 25 years in Wesleyan leadership, most recently as District Superintendent of the West Michigan District of The Wesleyan Church.  Dr. Jo Anne Lyon, a General Superintendent of The Wesleyan Church, delivered the Inaugural Address.  Former Presidents of BBC, Dr. David Medders and Dr. Arthur Maxwell participated, and the Presidents of Houghton College (Dr. Shirley Mullen) and Indiana Wesleyan University (Dr. Henry Smith) represented their institutions and also participated.  Several delegates from other institutions and organizations were present as well.  Rev. Mark Gorveatte was elected by the Board of Trustees during their spring meeting to serve as Bethany’s 11th president.

Brown’s Flat Fellowship hosted a farewell potluck for Rev. Bill & Elsie Morgan this past Sunday evening.  Special thanks to Pastor Wayne Briggs and all the folks that took care of the behind-the-scenes planning. Several people shared fitting comments about the lives and ministry of the Morgans.  The Morgans, who sailed to South Africa in the early 50’s, and spent 32 years as career missionaries, have lived at Beulah for the last several years and have transitioned to York Care Centre in Fredericton, NB.    They will be missed by their Beulah friends.  Rev. Morgan’s new address is: 120 Sunset Dr., Fredericton, NB E3A 1A3.  We wish both Elsie and Bill the very best in this new chapter of their lives.

“Some decisions are bigger than others, but even the biggest decisions account for only a small fraction of the total outcome…Most “overnight success” stories are about twenty years in the making.” – Jim Collins (How the Mighty Fall, p. 94)

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