Dear Colleagues,I want to start today with thanking you for your prayers for the meetings last week with the Network Leader Mentors, Network Leaders and the NLT. We met at Mount Mary Retreat Centre in Ancaster, ON (near Hamilton), and I was really impressed and thankful for the way that these leaders dug into the process we had planned. The Systems Analysis Task Team is working very hard to listen for the Lord’s voice about what needs to be left alone and what needs to be adjusted in our movement to make us more effective in seeing healthy congregations within the reach of more people in Canada and beyond. The approach has been to trust that we will hear God’s voice as His people are invited to talk about what they see and perceive.
As the Network Leaders discussed various dimensions of our movement, I heard a lot of themes that were very similar to what the Systems Analysis Task Team has been talking about. I also suspect that there will be several topics, issues, nuances that will be new. While I haven’t had time to go through the notes from the conversations, I’m expecting this will be the case. It is both confirmation of major themes and new insights that the Systems Analysis Task Team is looking for.
On Wednesday night, we had a powerful Communion service that lasted for a couple hours. The presence of the Holy Spirit was rich and the intensity of prayer was strong. I came away from those two hours immensely encouraged by the spiritual passion of these leaders, and I am believing that in the future there will be breakthroughs surface that will be rooted in those times of prayer.
As we met and ministered to one another, it became clear that we do not wrestle against flesh and blood. On some fronts, the battle is intensifying because the kingdom of darkness is being threatened; but as we prayed, I sensed that God was responding to our need for strength to persevere with our eyes fixed firmly on Jesus.
All of us were very encouraged by an email from Stephen Bond (one of the Network Leaders), who wrote that when he returned home on Thursday night, he went to an outreach concert at the local high school which had been planned by one of the youth in the Campbellford church. Over 20 youth gave their lives to Jesus!
There are pictures from the Network Leader meetings in the Photo Gallery this week.
I don’t know if they are back from their honeymoon yet, but we want to offer our congratulations to Phil and Kristen (Bovin) Hamilton, who were married at Asbury FMC, in Perth, ON, on New Year’s Day. Phil serves as an Assistant Pastor at Asbury.
Finally, for some people, winter is a wonderful time of the year; but many of us (especially once the Christmas season is over) now begin to long for the first days of spring. This is a season to be alert to our responsibility for appropriate self-care to ensure that we are experiencing emotional, spiritual and physical well-being. So please pay attention to the practices that give life and energy back to you so that you can be good news as you minister to your congregation and in your community.
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
Network Leader meetings at Mount Mary Retreat Centre
CHURCHES IN TRANSITION
Whitby FMC, Whitby, ON (Vic & Joan Stonehouse, Interim)
St Joseph Island Free Methodist Church, Hilton Beach, ON
Profiles available / Director of Personnel receiving resumes
Surrey FMC, Surrey, BC DOP receiving resumes until January 29
Asbury FMC, Perth, ON (Alan Adams, Interim)
Avonlea FMC, Avonlea, SK
Bramalea FMC, Brampton, ON
Charlemont FMC, Wallaceburg, ON
Eastern Koinonia, Toronto, ON
Queensway FMC, Niagara Falls, ON
Vennachar FMC, Vennachar, ON
Wawota FMC, Wawota, SK
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
The FreeWay, Oshawa, ON
Timmins FMC, Timmins, ON
Wyevale FMC, Wyevale, ON
Yarker FMC, Yarker, ON
PASTORS IN TRANSITION
– Executive Director – Arlington Beach Camp
– Director of Music and Arts – Wesley Chapel, Toronto
– Associate Pastor of Mission and Ministry– Arlington Woods FMC, Ottawa, ON
2010 Regional Gatherings
March 20 – Montreal – Rosemont
March 27 – Wesley Chapel
April 17 – Brantford – Freedom Christian Community
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)
Please note: The Bishop’s Notes are sent out at the beginning of every week and includes pulpit supply information). As some of this information is personal and sensitive it has been omitted from the website. Please contact the Personnel office (905-357-3165) for more information.