Your Board of Administration and the National Leadership team met this weekend (Friday and Saturday) by Zoom. We received 2 major reports: one from the task force examining our movement’s commitment to women in leadership, and the other from the task force considering FMCIC’s relationship with the LGBTQ community. We decided to spend another session together in a few weeks to process these very well-presented reports. I look forward to you hearing about these. For now, though let me tell you about your BOA.
We could have begun to discuss and debate how to roll out the recommendations contained in each report, and certainly we did some of that, but there was a brilliant pause moment, that actually took us about an hour. A BOA member reminded us that we should consider what the Holy Spirit might saying to and through each of us. Over the past 3 years we have gone through “Pursuing God’s Will Together” (which if you haven’t yet done as a board, then I highly recommend it). Ruth Haley Barton, the author, explained that a team, group or board should learn to be attentive to feelings of consolation and desolation each member might be experiencing in any given discussion. Consolation being inner feelings, prompts or movements of the Spirit that are essentially positive, that somehow encourage you forward. Consolation is God confirming that you are moving in His direction. Desolation are inner feelings, prompts or movements of the Spirit that should cause one to stop or pause because you are resisting God, or straying from Him. Feelings of desolation should cause the believer to stop and regroup with God.
These feelings are meant to be tested with your team, which for instance may sound like this, “I’m feeling uncertain about this, is anyone else?” or “I have no warning lights going off inside, only a green light. Anyone else?” To be clear, we do not make decisions based solely on these feelings, but they should certainly factor into our decision. Members of the Body of Christ are designed to need each other, including to listen to God. Teams, boards and groups still need to do the hard work of finding facts, collecting data, doing good Bible study, and we should consider feelings of consolation and desolation that we may be experiencing.
Your BOA had commissioned important reports. These reports were presented to the BOA and they did what a good board should: “before we discuss these any further, let’s check in with each other about anything that the Spirit might be saying to us as we have these reports in front of us.” What we discovered is that our experiences were very similar, and this would then shape our next steps.
This BOA has been on a journey to become healthy, which includes listening to each other, listening to you the FMCiC, listening to the prevailing culture, and most importantly listening to the Spirit. In order to get to this place, these are some of the steps that we have taken:
- we created a covenant for ourselves,
- we studied the book mentioned above,
- we began to emphasize prayer,
- we introduced an evaluation process for each other (creating a culture of honest conversation),
- we committed to being a vision-policy board (which required some organizational shifts and the creation of “teams”),
- we pause to consider feelings of consolation and desolation.
I wanted you to hear something happy and inspiring today.
Also, we will be redoing the Tearfund Sunday Service video and that will be released sometime this week. Sorry for the inconvience. We will get it to you as soon as possible.
Church Health Thursdays – Like You: https://www.fmcic.ca/like-you/
News & Stories Blog – The Job of a Prison Chaplain – https://www.fmcic.ca/the-work-of-a-prison-chaplain/
New Leaf Learning Centre: Falling Forward: Negotiating New Realities – https://www.newleafnetwork.ca/events/falling-forward-negotiating-new-realities/
FM VIDEOS: https://www.fmcic.ca/category/fm-video-blog/
SCOD: Topics Worth Thinking About – https://www.fmcic.ca/topics-worth-thinking-about/
The Scoop: October Edition
Rev. Joseph Schaefer – status changed to “Chaplain-Corrections Canada, Kingston, ON”, effective October 26.
ORDINATION AND COMMISSIONING SERVICES
Leonard Bruce – April 25, 2021, Warkworth FM Church, Warkworth, ON
Douglas Smith – May 2, 2021 at 2:00 pm, Fellowship of Joy, St. Williams, ON
Wilder Boutin – Centre Biblique Louange a L’Eternel, Montreal, QC – date and time TBA.
FOUNDATIONAL COURSES http://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:
November 6-8, 2020 – in-person course cancelled due to pandemic restrictions.
*NEW* – 6-week course via Zoom starting Thursday, January 21, 7:30-9:30 pm EST
Date and 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:
Date and location TBA*
Personal and Church Stewardship:
5-week online course – Start Date TBA*
(* These course locations are selected based on where the majority of the participants reside – so please register early! )
2020 APPLICATIONS ARE NOW CLOSED
2021 APPLICATIONS http://www.fmcic.ca/scholarships/
LEADERSHIP SCHOLARSHIP PLAN (LSP):
February 15 is the deadline to apply for LSP for any courses taken during the winter semester of 2021. The 2021 application forms and instructions will be available soon to download from the link above. Please use the application forms marked “rev 2021.”
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.
CHURCHES IN TRANSITION
Cedar Street Community Church, Simcoe, ON
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)
None at this time
(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 FMC, Campbellford, ON (Rev. Jurgen Rausch-Transition Pastor)
Cornerstone FMC, Prince Albert, SK
Dunnville FMC, Dunnville, ON
First FM Church, New Westminster, BC
Harrowsmith FM Church, Harrowsmith, ON
Lakeland Community Church, Spiritwood, SK
New Hope FMC, Bracebridge, ON (Rev. Gary Denniss-Interim Pastor)
New Horizons Community Church, Sarnia, ON
Pineview FMC, Cloyne, ON
Richmond Hill Chinese & English FM Churches, Richmond Hill, ON (Rev. Louis Leung – Interim Pastor)
Trinity Christian Centre, Dresden, ON (Rev. Alan Adams-Interim Pastor, effective Nov 1)
Whitby FMC, Whitby, ON (Rev. Vic Stonehouse-Transition Pastor)