CliffsNotes – August 31, 2021

Spiritual Parenthood

I am experiencing deep sadness as I watch Haitians recover from another deadly earthquake – prior to the quake, I had heard how volatile the country already was. Several of our brothers and sisters in Quebec have had loved ones who were victims of the earthquake. There are also the images from Afghanistan that make me angry, and deeply concerned for what is about to happen under Taliban rule. Of course, there are the forest fires wreaking havoc in Canada and beyond. I could go on to list more, but you’ve been watching the news too.


What’s needed is a praying Church! Please join us for the 21 Days of Prayer & Fasting that our National Prayer Team is encouraging us all to participate in! Click here for more details and to sign up.

The other deep sadness for me was the loss of Former Bishop Gary Walsh. He was a significant leader in our movement, and a mentor to me for many years. As recently as 2 days ago I was thinking about FMCiC and an idea I have, and for a fleeting moment I thought, “I’ll call Gary to run it by him.” He would often help me sort out or process ideas, and situations.

This past Friday I was reading the Apostle Paul about being a “father” in the faith. We, the Church, should have spiritual fathers and mothers, and also strive to be spiritual mothers and fathers. Perhaps we lost something when our preferred word (and approach) for overseers in the Church became “leaders”. The word “leader” is actually only used a few times in the Bible, depending on the translation you use. There is a reference to obeying your leaders in Hebrews. In the NASB, for instance, it is used 4 times and only in Matthew.

Rather than using the word “leaders”, the Bible uses words like bond-servants, elders, deacons (incidentally, roles that women could also fully engage in), and fathers (“mothers” implied). In this season of regrouping and rediscovering our opportunities as a Church, I am praying that we would rediscover spiritual parenthood – we would personally invite that relationship, and strive to become a spiritual parent. Instead of me giving you answers, I am inviting you to do some homework:

  • What are qualities and characteristics associated with spiritual fatherhood / motherhood? What would you look for in a spiritual mother or father?
  • How do we as the Church help each other mature into these roles (be specific)
  • Compare yourself to the list that you made in the first bullet point. What are steps you need to take to move into spiritual parenthood?
  • Do you have spiritual parents? If so, have you formally thanked them for this investment into your life? If you have not had spiritual parents, why not (is this the fault of the Church or perhaps you)?

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN

Tuesdays: Cliff’s Notes
2nd Tuesday of each month: What’s Got You Thinking?
3rd Wednesday of each month: Get the Scoop with Lisa and Alison
4th Thursday of each month: Church Health Thursday
Message from Bishop Cliff: https://vimeo.com/518725147
Coffee with Jared: https://vimeo.com/533730644
Mystery Beverage with Marc: https://vimeo.com/504427854


ANNOUNCEMENTS

None this week

ORDINATION SERVICES
September 12 at 2:00 pm – Kathleen Casement – Verona FMC, Verona, ON
September 19 at 2:00 pm – Tyler Lane – Trulls Rd FMC, Courtice, ON
October 24 at 3:00 pm – Jessica Isaak – Hampton FMC, Saskatoon, SK
November 7 at 2:30 pm – Leonard Bruce – Peterborough FMC, Peterborough, ON
November 21 at 3:00 pm – Wilder Boutin – Centre Biblique Louange a L’Eternel, Montreal, QC

Date and time TBA:
Blake Found – Uxbridge FMC, Uxbridge, ON
Erika Mills – location TBA
Benjamin Platz – Next Church, Kingston, ON

FOUNDATIONAL COURSES  https://www.fmcic.ca/foundational-courses/
Register online through the link above (Tuition payment is not required when registering for a course.  Payment is due 10 days before the course begins.)
Lay Ministers tracking for credentialed ministry and those transferring ordination credentials into the FMCIC need to take the following two courses for full credit – and if possible, the Heart course first and then Wesleyan Theology.

Heart of Canadian Free Methodism:
2022 date and location TBA*

Wesleyan Theology:
7-week course on Tuesday evenings 7:30-9:30 pm EDT via Zoom starting Tuesday, October 5, 2021
Also available:

Ministerial Candidates tracking for Commissioned or Ordained Minister are required to take the following two courses for full credit.  Those who are already commissioned or ordained are required to either audit these two courses for 1 Continuing Education Unit (CEU) each or take the two courses and complete the assignments for 3 CEUs each.

Culture and the Missional Church:
2022 Date and location TBA*

Personal and Church Stewardship: 
5-week online course – 2022 Start Date TBA
(* These course locations are selected based on where the majority of the participants reside – so please register early!)

SCHOLARSHIPS

2021 APPLICATIONS   https://www.fmcic.ca/scholarships/
LEADERSHIP SCHOLARSHIP PLAN (LSP):
The Leadership Scholarship Plan (LSP) provides financial assistance to candidates who are studying to meet the educational requirements for credentialed ministry, or for members of conference pursuing continuing education.
October 15 is the deadline to apply for LSP for any courses taken during the summer/or fall semesters of 2021.  The 2021 application forms and instructions  are now available to download from the link above.  Please use the application forms marked “rev 2021.”
SPECIAL SCHOLARSHIPS:
The Special Scholarships provide financial assistance to those who are members of a Free Methodist church pursuing post-secondary education to grow in their Christian faith, to those who are pursuing credentialed ministry, and to members of conference pursuing continuing education.

October 15 is the deadline to apply for the annual Special Scholarships for courses taken during the 2021 calendar year – apply online anytime from the link above.  Special Scholarships are awarded in late November/early December each year.

CONTINUING EDUCATION UNITS (CEUs)   https://www.fmcic.ca/introduction-to-continuing-education/
Ordained and Commissioned Ministers (except retirees) are to annually report Continuing Education Units (CEUs) acquired during each year.  Check the link above for information on CEUs, the report form and a list of examples of many different types of life-long learning that can be applied as CEUs.

Note:  For those who attend the fall Minister’s Conferences or the spring Regional Gatherings, add 6 hours of CEU credit for each event when you send in your annual CEU report.

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CHURCHES IN TRANSITION
Interviewing

Simcoe, ON – Cedar Street Community Church
Whitby, ON – Whitby FMC

Church Profiles available
Contact Davika Dotson in the  Leadership Development Office to request a church profile – [email protected] or 416-240-7845   (deadline to apply in brackets)

Prince Albert, SK – Cornerstone FMC [part-time] (Aug 31)

Preparing Profiles
If you are interested in seeing the profile for any of these churches, please contact Davika in the Leadership Development Office [see above] and the profile will be emailed to you as soon as it becomes available.

Campbellford, ON – Campbellford FMC, (Rev. Jurgen Rausch-Transition Pastor)
Cloyne, ON – Pineview FMC
Frankford, ON – Frankford Community Church
Hamilton, ON – Rymal Road Community Church
Harrowsmith, ON – Harrowsmith FMC
Hilton Beach, ON – St. Joseph Island FMC
New Westminster, BC – First FMC
Oshawa, ON – The Corner Church (Free Methodist / Church of the Nazarene)
Richmond Hill, ON – Richmond Hill Chinese & English FM Churches (Rev. Louis Leung – Interim Pastor)
Sarnia, ON – New Horizons Community Church (Rev. Mary Lee DeWitt-Transition Pastor)
Saskatoon, SK – Lakeview FMC
Thornbury, ON – Blue Mountain Community Church
Warkworth, ON – Warkworth FMC


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