I was out on one of my early morning walks in the neighbourhood recently and something inside me snapped. I had been looking at all of the litter that was caught in the long grass and shrubs and internally raging about why things were starting to look so trashy. Two things happened. It occurred to me that I could add “bend over and stand up” component to my morning exercise—and so the picking up of trash began and some calories burned.
The second thing that happened was an internal journey on why this bothered me so much. Recently I heard about a study that found that if a community has a commitment to fighting litter, people are less inclined to be litterbugs, but once litter begins to accumulate, it seems that people find it easier to litter. So am I just a “neat freak” or was more going on?
It is possible this was a “neat freak” deciding to be a good citizen in the neighbourhood, but as I was picking up trash, something else surfaced. I discovered that I am more than theoretically committed to the care of creation; I actually believe the statement on the Care of Creation (Par. 630.4) that the 2008 General Conference adopted. It says,
“As Christians we affirm with Scripture that all creation declares the glory of God (Psalm 19:1-4). Since we worship the Creator and believe that Christ’s redeeming work “…reconciles to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven…” (Colossians 1:20), we value creation and participate in activity that restores, protects, and respects the earth. This demonstrates our love for God.”
Caring for creation is a demonstration of our love for the Creator. Yes. That’s what was going on inside me!
Some of you may be thinking that it’s too bad that I didn’t write this earlier in the month and stimulate the FMCiC movement to observe Earth Day on April 21. To be honest, I wasn’t thinking about it earlier in the month—but then, maybe every day should be Earth Day. When all the “rah! rah!” of the one day is gone, my hope is that as devoted Christ-followers we’ll still be found faithfully showing our love to God by caring for what He has made.
If this is something that you are just starting to think about as being a natural part of your discipleship, you could benefit from reading the “Evangelical Declaration on the Care of Creation” in the appendix to an excellent position paper on “The Environment” found on our website at the following link. http://www.fmc-canada.org/index.php/en/Position-Papers/the-enviroment.html Hopefully, this will entice you to read the whole paper!!
This past Saturday was the Regional Gathering at Freedom Christian Community in Brantford, Ontario. We had a great day together, and I appreciate so much all of the pastors and local church leaders who made the effort to be present.
Yesterday, I visited Open House FMC, a church plant in Stratford, Ontario. This church plant meets on Sunday evenings in a suite in an office building on the main street in Stratford. (You’ll see a picture of Pastor Peter Goodyear receiving his credential at the Regional Gathering on Saturday. He has transferred in from the Nazarene denomination.) I enjoyed my time with this core of committed Christ-followers and loved the way that children are valued. You may be interested to know that their worship band has been invited to lead worship at the 2011 General Conference.
There are pictures in the Photo Gallery of both of these events along with some pictures from the FMCiC’s “Stronger Together Student Ministries Leadership retreat” on April 9-11.
There are several announcements. The Board of Administration has approved Paul Griffin’s transfer in from PAOC (Pastor-Prince Edward County FMC, Picton, ON), and Laurie Lemke as a Ministerial Candidate (Vennachar FMC). Congratulations Paul and Laurie. Blue Mountain Community Church (Thornbury, ON), has gone into transition. Bob Lay is going to become a chaplain with the Canadian Forces.
The Board of Administration meets this coming Friday and Saturday. Please keep these important meetings in your prayers.
P.S. Remember. If you are wondering about something related to the FMCIC and its ministry, please send your question to [email protected].
Have a look at Dan Sheffield’s blog: http://sheffield.typepad.com
Chad Vankoughnett – May 2, 2010 at 10:30 a.m. at First FM Church, Moose Jaw, SK.
ANNUAL REPORT – Due now! Please file your report through our website—www.fmc-canada.org—you will find it on the top banner of the home page in the “Network” section, or at this link: http://www.formsite.com/reports/form70742026/index.html
CHURCHES IN TRANSITION
St Joseph Island Free Methodist Church, Hilton Beach, ON
Wawota FMC, Wawota, SK
Profiles available / Director of Personnel receiving resumes
Surrey FMC, Surrey, BC – DOP receiving resumes until April 30
Asbury FMC, Perth, ON (Alan Adams, Interim)
Avonlea FMC, Avonlea, SK
Barrie FMC, Barrie, ON
Blue Mountain Community Church, Thornbury, ON
Bramalea FMC, Brampton, ON
Charlemont FMC, Wallaceburg, ON
Eastern Koinonia, Toronto, ON
Queensway FMC, Niagara Falls, ON
Trulls Road FMC, Courtice, ON
Vennachar FMC, Vennachar, ON
Functioning with approved local arrangements
Butternut Creek, Kingston, ON
Campbell’s Bay FMC, Campbell’s Bay, QC
Enterprise FMC, Enterprise, ON
Killarney FMC, Killarney, MB
Mainstreet Community Church, Kelowna, BC
Malvern Chinese, Toronto, ON
Marmora FMC, Marmora, ON
Mississippi FMC, Mississippi, ON
Richmond Hill Chinese & English Churches, Richmond Hill, ON
Roblin FMC, Roblin, MB
Timmins FMC, Timmins, ON
Wyevale FMC, Wyevale, ON
Yarker FMC, Yarker, ON
PASTORS IN TRANSITION
Retirement Park Administrator –Light and Life Park, Lakeland, Florida
Retirement Park Office Manager – Light and Life Park, Lakeland, Florida
2010 Regional Gatherings
May 1 – Arlington Beach Camp
May 8 – Dryden
May 15 – Athens
May 29 – Sault Ste Marie
June 5 – Ellice
June 12 – Merritt
2010 FMCIC Ministers Conferences
September 28-30 – Wesley Acres
October 5-7 – Entheos Retreat Centre (near Calgary)