Pastors, an offer you should consider… Part 2
Last week I had Paul Millar, our pastor from the happening church in Westport, tell you about his experience with Church Renewal out of Steinbach MB. I also mentioned in my notes last week that I had the opportunity to visit with Pastor Ray Duerksen, who is leading this Canadian movement. I asked Ray what happened that a church embroiled in conflict, with an average weekly attendance of about 150 people on a Sunday morning, became a Spirit-filled dynamic growing, kingdom-impactful church. He told me a story, not a 3-point how to formula for successful church renewal, rather he told me his story…
He wasn’t at the church very long before realizing the interpersonal conflict, and started wondering prayerfully what God had in mind for him and this church. He remembers crying out to God from a place of discouragement, and he believes that God told him to hold as the “answer is around the corner”. What happened next was not nothing short of horrible: his wife became critically ill as did his best friend. His wife would undergo a total of 10 serious surgeries, and his best friend eventually died. He does not believe that God sent these terrible diseases, but he does believe that God took terrible and turned it into beautiful. He explained to me that as his family started to deal with this, the church family rallied in prayer and support. He said that they began to “pray desperately”, and it would change everything. His best friend’s wife also “pressed into prayer” and fell in love with God and her opportunity with Him in prayer – so much so that today she is the fulltime prayer pastor at this very large and thriving church. In many ways their experience reminded me of the widow in Luke 18. She was desperate and resolved that there was only one solution, so she persistently kept presenting herself to the nasty old judge. How much more responsive will our loving Father be when we stay persistently in His presence.
From Luke 18 type-prayer comes restored marriages, strength, physical healings, vision, supernatural hope, joy, etc. Out of these comes stories – I mean of course that when a man from Wawota was healed of a serious condition, he and his wife quite naturally started telling the story. Out of these stories comes “evangelism”, which is Good news telling. Out of good news telling, comes new friendships, and visitors to church on Sunday. Out of new friendships and visits comes new life in Christ…
I bring this up today to remind you pastors that a Christian businessman believes that God would have him subsidize any pastor and spouse who would like to go the Church Renewal Conference which are weekend events three times per year (January, May and October). These events also include the prayer summit on the Sunday night and an invitation to all pastors to be coached weekly for 32 weeks. The only requirement is that the sending church needs help financially in order to send their pastor, as opposed to the sending church having a healthy bank account but not wanting to use it!
On Friday and Saturday this past weekend the FMCiC Board for Administration met. Over the next couple of weeks I’ll tell you about this excellent meeting. We are structuring ourselves in such a way as to model healthy church organization. But we are very aware that organization and policy without healthy culture is ineffective. We therefore are paying attention to the “culture” of the FMCiC. I look forward to unpacking this with you and your leadership teams.
On Sunday Karlene and I were in Stoney Creek. This year the Rymal Road FM celebrated their 140th anniversary! The community around them has been growing at a significant pace. The demographic includes many new Canadians and Rymal Road has responded with ESL (I wrote about this last year). Thank you Rymal Road for pursuing what it means to accept responsibility for your new and growing community – and for the great food that you fed Karlene, Greg and I!
2019 REGIONAL GATHERINGS 2019 Regional Gathering Locations and Dates – PDF
Regional Gatherings are all about connecting! Our intention is to see Free Methodist leader and lay people meeting together as a movement for both an “informative” and “formative” gathering. We hope to see you there! https://www.fmcic.ca/regional-gathering-2019/
Church Health Thursdays – Nothing Beats a Good Story: https://www.fmcic.ca/nothing-beats-a-good-story/ New
News & Stories Blog – Who’s Reading What in 2019 – John-Mark Cockram: https://www.fmcic.ca/whos-reading-what-in-2019-john-mark-cockram/ New
the conneXion – a Free Methodist theology blog: 3 Minute Theology 2.5: Knowing the Bible Inside Out: https://www.fmcic.ca/3-minute-theology-2-5-knowing-the-bible-inside-out/
New Leaf Network: Learning Party stories – Andrew Benson: https://www.newleafnetwork.ca/podcast/ep-64-learning-party-stories-andrew-benson/
Faith and Finances Website: http://faithandfinances.ca
Board of Administration Meeting
Bryce Clements – approved as a Ministerial Candidate and appointed as Associate Pastor at Pineridge House Community Church, Calgary, AB, effective May 3
Belinda Leibel (Associate Pastor at Northview Community Church, Regina, SK) – approved as a Commissioned Minister, effective May 3
Curtis Anderson (Associate Pastor at Lakeview Free Methodist Church, Saskatoon, SK) – transferred his ordination credential from the Be in Christ Church of Canada into The FMCiC, effective May 3
Ordination and Commissioning Services
Belinda Leibel – Commissioning Service at Northview Community Church, Regina, SK – date and time TBA
FOUNDATIONAL COURSES https://www.fmcic.ca/foundational-courses/
Register online through the link above
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:
May 31-June 2, 2019 – Peterborough FM Church, Peterborough ON
November 1-3, 2019 – western Canada-location TBA*
Cours sur le Coeur du Méthodisme Libre Canadien
12 au 14 juillet 2019 à Montréal à l’Église Méthodiste Libre de St-Henri
May 31-June 2, 2019 – Weyburn Free Methodist Church, Weyburn, SK
October 25-27, 2019 – Ontario-location TBA*
(also available online through FMC-USA: http://fmcusa.org/leadership/courses/)
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:
Western Canada course starts October 7 (deadline to register – October 1)
Oct 7-31 – advance online engagement
Nov 1-2 – two-day in-person class at Lakeview Free Methodist Church, Saskatoon, SK
Personal and Church Stewardship:
5-week online course (FRENCH) – start date – TBA
6-week online course (ENGLISH) – start date – TBA
(*locations are selected based on where the majority of the participants reside – so please register early!)
2019 SCHOLARSHIPS https://www.fmcic.ca/scholarships/
October 15 is the deadline to apply for the Leadership Scholarship Plan (LSP) for any courses taken during either the summer and/or the fall semesters of 2019. The 2019 application forms and instructions are now available to download from the link above.
October 15 is the deadline to apply for the annual Special Scholarships for courses taken during 2019 – apply online from the link above
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 attended the fall Minister’s Conferences, add 6 hours of CEU credit when you send in your annual CEU report.
CHURCHES IN TRANSITION
Caistor Centre FMC, Caistor Centre, ON
Church Profiles available
Contact Susan DePlanché in the Leadership Development Office to request a church profile – [email protected] or 289-228-1225 (deadline to apply in brackets)
Hampton FMC, Saskatoon, SK (May 7, 2019)
Madoc Wesleyan/FMC, Madoc, ON (May 21, 2019)
(If you are interested in seeing the profile for any of these churches, please contact Susan in the Leadership Development Office [[email protected] or 289-228-1225] and the profile will be emailed to you as soon as it becomes available.)
Athens FMC, Athens, ON (Angel Valentin-Transition Pastor)
Crossroads FMC, Salmon Arm, BC (Vern Frudd – Interim Pastor)
New Horizons Community Church – Sarnia, ON (Kim Henderson-Interim Pastor)
Queensway FMC, Niagara Falls, ON
Richmond Hill Chinese & English FM Churches, Richmond Hill, ON (Abbs So and Shadow Lau-Interim Co-Pastors)
Smiths Falls FMC, Smiths Falls, ON (Vic Stonehouse)
Part-Time Office Administrator – Westdale Park FM Church
Summer Intern – Wawota FM Church
Children’s Ministry Director – Barrie FM Church
Intern Job Position – Maple Grove Christian Retreat Centre
Youth Pastor – Malvern Methodist