Under Sail

Japan Earthquake: We have all been glued to the news as we have followed the events surrounding the 8.9 earthquake and subsequent tsunami that took place in Japan last week.  Both caused considerable damage and loss of lives.  Currently, there are two Global Partners (GP) missionaries in Japan, Andrea Swarthout and Robin White.  They do not live in the affected areas and both are safe.  The Wesleyan Church partners with the Immanuel General Mission, an indigenous Japanese holiness church.  Last Friday, GP stated that the reports they had received to that point indicated one church is in the affected area, but its status was unknown.  Please be in prayer for the Japanese people, the Immanuel General Mission Church, and our missionaries. Robin White is from the Atlantic District and was ordained last year at Beulah Camp.  Robin has journeyed to Higashi-Kurume, Tokyo and is working at CRASH’s command center.  They are trying to organize and mobilize the potentially thousands of volunteers who will be helping with the relief efforts.  He says “the amazing thing is how safe and calm everything is in spite of the disruptions.”   You can follow what is happening with Robin and this situation on his blog at www.japanlog.tumblr.com or for more frequent, shorter updates follow his twitter feed which is accessible from his blog.

Pastoral Recall Votes:
In the last three weeks, twelve of our churches have conducted pastoral recall votes.  Five pastors received unanimous votes – Ryan Farrell, Nackawic; Bill Lea, West Head; Scott Lewis, Lower Hainesville; Jasper
Rideout, North Head; and Michael Zottarelli, Sackville, NS.  The other seven received very strong, affirming recall votes ranging from 92% to 98% in favour: Amy Corey, Brazil Lake; Greg Dakin, Saint John First; Bud Fancy, Presque isle; Rod Guptill, Wood’s Harbour; Graham Perry, Florenceville-Bristol; Reg Thomas, Perth-Andover; Rich Thomas, Jonesport.  All have accepted the recall.
Resignations: Mark Cooney resigned Sunday, March 6th.  He has served as the pastor of the Millville Wesleyan Church for 18 years.
Pastoral Searches: The following churches are currently in pastoral transition and seeking God’s direction as they look for the person who will serve as their next pastor: Bangor-Pathway; Fort Fairfield; Ingomar; and Millville.  This decision is one of the single most important decisions a church makes, and so please be in prayer that these congregations will have God’s discernment and direction.  Pray also that the persons who will serve these congregations will have their hearts prepared, and God’s peace as they are directed to take up a new responsibility.
Presque Isle Wesleyan Church had a work team leave for Haiti Tuesday, March 1st for 10 days.  The team included fourteen men, including eleven carpenters.  This was the first missions trip for eleven of the team members.  Senior Pastor Bud Fancy announced the trip Christmas Eve.  PIWC began fund raising mid-January.  They needed $32,500 and God supplied $34,000 through work teams, donors from many places outside the church, and from their church family in a six-week period.  $15,000 was put into the project they were assigned.  The Team did a major repair on a church in Port-au-Prince.  They poured 24 yards of concrete by hand into a concrete beam network, raised a couple of walls, and built trusses for the main sanctuary.  The Team received strong affirmation from the “on-the-ground” GP folks.
Pastor Rod Guptill and the Wood’s Harbour Wesleyan Church have a strong heart for missions and a global view of reaching the world for Christ.  Both Hope House and the First Step Centre in Odessa, Ukraine are projects of World Hope Canada.  Kerry & Carole Allison from the Atlantic District have been “boots on the ground” people who have worked in the Ukraine with the girls at Hope House for several years.  Hope House is a cause the Wood’s Harbour Church has been supporting for more than six years.  Just recently, Pastor Rod and the congregation took some creative measures to raise money for Hope House.  Among other things, Pastor Rod took a polar dip on a chilly February Sunday (February 20th) following the service.  More than $1,200 has been raised since December to sponsor a 13-year-old Ukrainian orphan, enabling her to live in a “house of hope.”  For more information on Hope House and First Step Centre, visit the World Hope Canada website at www.worldhope.ca

Human Trafficking is a serious violation of human rights representing a modern-day form of slavery and is a crime that is happening in Canada. In fact, every year more and more Canadian citizens and permanent residents are being exploited in the sex industry and labor market.  World Hope Canada (WHC) wants to do something to stop this horrific crime that is affecting people living in our own communities and they need your help!  WHC is in the running for a $100,000 grant that will fund a project to Give a Voice to Canadian Victims of Human Trafficking.  Pepsi Canada, through their “Refresh Everything” campaign is giving away over $1 million to individuals, communities and organizations to improve the lives of Canadians. The purpose of this project is to combine public awareness and grassroots community engagement with the aim of both preventing the trafficking of Canadians and to assist those who have already been affected. WHC’s goal is to reach over 5000 Canadians in 50 communities and raise $50,000 for Canadian victims of human trafficking.  How can you get involved? WHC needs people to vote!  The project that receives the most votes will receive the grant, AND you can vote everyday from now until April 30, 2011.  Go to www.refresheverything.ca/worldhopecanada to register!  The first time you vote you will need to register and create a password, and then you will be set up to login everyday!  (NOTE: passwords should not include symbol; only use letters & numbers).

Joanne and I were privileged to be part of a team from Fredericton – Crosspoint Wesleyan who journeyed to Israel March 4-13, 2011.  There were 31 one people on this tour led by Dr. Wilbur Glenn Williams, professor from Indiana Wesleyan University and noted expert on the Holy Land.  This was Dr. Williams 148th trip to Israel!  In addition to the LeRoys, The Atlantic District contingent was made up of Pastors Tim Guptill and Conard Symonds, Randy Brownlee, Heidi Hoyt, and Stephen & Ruth Woodworth.  It was great to spend time with the Crosspoint Team members, and to have this experience.  In a day when descriptive words are often over-the-top and used to describe things of lesser import, it is not out of line to say this experience was inspiring, awesome, impacting, and memorable!
Lead Pastor Tim Guptill and Fredericton – Crosspoint Wesleyan are hosting a church leadership conference April 8, 2011.  It’s called “Outlandish!”  They’ve kept the price to a minimum.  The speakers come from different denominations and very different communities – from the boonies to the inner city.  Sign up early as registration is limited.  For more information go to http://www.crosspointchurch.ca/outlandish

Linda Lamos, District Director of Children’s Ministry, wants to remind you of The Atlantic District Children’s Ministry Huddle which will be held in two locations on the District: Moncton Wesleyan – March 26, 2011 from 9 am – 3pm and Yarmouth Wesleyan – April 9, 2011 from 9 am -3 pm.  The Huddle is a one-day, affordable event for your entire children’s workers team.  Sunday school teachers, nursery workers, VBS helpers, children’s church leaders and volunteers will experience the excitement and energy of discovering practical, new ideas they can use NOW from a team of passionate and dedicated workers.  Discover practical ideas, learn new kid’s worship songs, see the latest resources, and network with other children’s workers.  This is a very cost effective workshop – Only $25/person ~ 4 or more $99 (includes rallies, breakouts and lunch).  To register contact: linda.lamos@kingsvalley.ca
Just under $1,000 has come in towards the replacement of the Children’s Tabernacle Roof at Beulah.  The repairs plus a new steel roof will cost $6,000.  It will take 60 sheets of steel.  60 sponsors giving $100 each would make this possible.  If $100 is too big a stretch for your budget, and you’d like to contribute, give what you can.  The project needs to be completed before camp.  Make your cheque payable to the “Atlantic District,” then write “Children’s Tab Roof” in the memo line, and send it to: The Atlantic District, 1830 Mountain Rd., Moncton, NB E1G 1A9.  Any and all help is appreciated.  Thank you.
“God finds His best soldiers on the mountain of affliction.” – L. B. Cowman

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