Bishop’s Notes – November 24, 2008

Dear Colleagues,

This is the week leading up to the beginning of Advent, and though it ultimately finishes as a season of joy, it is first a time of preparation and sober reflection about life and how we are living.

Advent is not about being morbid, but about being honest, healthy and real in light of our relationship with the One we serve as Lord. Looking back, did the world need Jesus to come? Looking around, do we need His transforming presence now personally and societally? Looking into the future, do we think about His second coming with joyful expectation?

I receive Dave Toycen’s (President, World Vision Canada) monthly issues of World Watch. In the Nov/Dec issue, he tackles questions about consumption and whether our spending habits are in keeping with who God calls us to be. I’ve found it very challenging as I contemplate how I will live in the short term during this Christmas season, but more importantly, as I reflect on how I have lived over this past year in light of Jesus’ Lordship over all creation generally and my life specifically. I want to represent Him well and care about what is most important to Him.

Here are the topics discussed.

• Consuming with a Conscience – Some of our consumption habits are exacting a high physical and spiritual toll on us, our neighbours and our world. In light of the global economic crisis, there’s no better time to rethink our ways

• News You Can Use – some revealing numbers about how we spend

• Speaking Out – We asked four experts what practical steps people can take to fight against overconsumption.

• Gifts That Transform – six meaningful gifts that keep on giving

• Thoughts on Stuff –twelve scriptures that give perspective

Check it out at:

Here are some good news items:

This past week the BOA voted to approve a recommendation made by the Pacific-Western MEGaP that Steve Lougheed’s ordination credentials be restored.

I was reading a report on Quebec Ministry sent by Nathan Umazekabiri and he writes: “Today we count 15 churches and church plants in Quebec. Three of them are the new church plants that have started in Le Gardeur, Ottawa and Laval recently. In four years we have seen the growth from 6 churches and church plants to 15! We hope that in a near future we will be able to officially open two more church plants in Montreal West and Quebec City.”

There are two appointments to announce. Kathy Doornekamp has been appointed as Assistant Pastor at Westport FMC and Adam Beach’s request to be located at West Springs FMC, Calgary has been granted.

The BOA also elected two new board members Dan Hall (replacing David Kneeshaw) and Chris Pomeroy (replacing Doug Buchanan). Retired pastor Fred Irish wrote to request prayer as he is to have surgery (not yet scheduled) to remove a growth from behind his left eye.

Have a great week serving Jesus.

Bishop Keith