THAT ’ S H U N D R E D S O F TH O U SAN D S O F P E O P LE WH O HAVE : • Heard the Gospel for the first time • Discovered a relationship with Jesus • Invited someone they know to explore faith
2018 Annual Report
MES SAGE FROM SHAIL A
1,0 04 ,650+ PEOPLE HAVE AT TENDE D ALPHA IN CANADA
Looking back on 2018, we thank God and celebrate all He is doing through the church in Canada. We count it an incredible privilege to support and inspire the Canadian church to share the Gospel and we recognize that it is your partnership that makes it possible. Alpha Weekend and build awareness of the
BC. In addition, I have personally taken
and time away. These elements are crucial to
responsible for training and leadership
transformational impact of prayer ministry
the quality of the Alpha experience and will be a continued area of focus for us.
Youth & Student-Led
excited about the 466 student-led Alphas
better serve the church, we seized a moment
As we have continued to explore how we can
that ran last year. This represents a cultural
of need as identified by many of the senior
This has been and will continue to be an area of opportunity as we work to help empower and equip students across the country.
Catholic Context & Prisons In 2018, there were leadership changes
and the church set historic highs in all major areas: the number of guests, courses and volunteers.
Culture of Evangelism Last year we continued to press into quality Alphas, focusing on supporting the culture of evangelism in the church. This is a work
that starts at the roots and builds a strong
foundation that will deliver long-term impact. We specifically looked at ways to model the
monitor and adapt to.
who have taken Alpha, but we are even more
help them understand the person of Jesus.
the one millionth Alpha guest in Canada,
which our leadership team continues to
make a difference in their friends’ lives and
At the end of 2018, we were able to celebrate
development. This also brings complexity
We are so grateful for the one million people
shift in the next generation that desires to
On behalf of the Alpha Canada Board and staff, thank you for your faithful partnership in making Jesus known.
on a global role as Senior Vice President
church leaders across our country; the
epidemic of social isolation and loneliness, and encouraging congregations to share
their faith and invite. In response to this, we began to dream and imagine what it would look like if every Christian in every church
running Alpha invited one person they share
life with to discover a relationship with Jesus.
in both of these ministry areas and we are
In this report, you will be able to read more
and even more so in 2020.
highlights from 2018, each reminding me of
anticipating an increase in impact in 2019
about this initiative as well as a number of God’s goodness at work in our country.
Last year, we prioritized increasing our
We are grateful to the leaders who allow
to the church in Canada. God opened the
volunteers and for the faithful partners
funding to optimize our service opportunities hearts of new and faithful partners, and
we’ve been amazed at the generosity of
Alpha volunteers who were excited for the opportunity to give to Alpha through our
us to serve them, for the enthusiastic like you who make this all possible. With gratitude,
Easter and Christmas campaigns.
Global Work Our team continues to contribute to Alpha globally through our youth, digital and
Shaila Visser National Director, Alpha Canada
training work based in New Westminster,
2018 Annual Report
ALPHA IN 2018 C E LE B R ATI N G YO U R I M PACT
28,728 Began or restored a relationship with Jesus 2017: 29,517
ALPHA FOR YOUTH & STUDENT- LE D
5,474 Alphas 2017: 5,000
2,204 Churches / organizations 2017: 2,029
Alphas for Youth
Began or restored a relationship with Jesus on Alphas for Youth
41,652 Volunteers 2017: 41,204 4
2018 Annual Report
â&#x20AC;&#x153;Alpha has changed how our students share Jesus with their friends. It has made it so easy and accessible for their friends to ask questions and feel welcomed. We have adopted the model that all our Alphas are run completely by students, meaning they have owned the creativity, leadership and execution, and have done it so well!â&#x20AC;? - Chris Whitelaw, Youth Pastor, Beulah Alliance Church, Edmonton, AB
ALPHA WE EKE N D Joint Alpha Weekend at Muskoka Woods, Ontario In the fall of 2018, churches from the Greater Toronto Area joined together for an Alpha Weekend at Muskoka Woods as part of our
strategy around quality Alphas. It was highly impactful for the 245 people from 22 different churches that attended. Churches felt
more equipped and excited to run their own weekend away or be a part of another collective one in the future.
Alpha Weekend volunteers
“The prayer ministry was for both leaders and guests and the Holy Spirit was with us. Everyone felt it. It was one of the most powerful spiritual experiences of my life.” Jenn Van Gent, Alpha Team Leader, Little Trinity Church, Toronto, ON
EXPE RIE NCE ALPHA Church Leader Engagement Twice each year, we invited groups of influential churches and leaders to Experience
Alpha events at HTB in London. This allowed leaders to experience Alpha culture first
hand in the unique context of a local church and return to launch Alpha and effectively engage their church communities in sharing the Gospel.
“Wonderful, inspirational, exactly what I needed to refocus on God’s grand vision for evangelization. And I was immensely touched to meet and build relationships with my Protestant/ Evangelical brothers/sisters/pastors–an unexpected treat that will impact me for life.” - Fr Justin Huang, St. Anthony of Padua Parish, Vancouver, BC
2018 Annual Report
MIR AN DA & AS HLYN Abbotsford, BC Miranda’s co-worker, Ashlyn, took a step of faith last summer and invited her to attend an Alpha she was hosting at her home.
I think at the beginning, I didn’t know
My family is very, very atheist. So
we got super, super close. So now she’s
growing up I never had church or the Bible or anything faith-related. I was never really taught about it.
Ashlyn super well. I just knew that she was going to host Alpha. But right
through doing Alpha and starting to
learn about Jesus with her, I feel like
very invested in my life as I am in hers. We’ve created a really cool friendship out of it.
When I first met Ashlyn, she was just
So Alpha has impacted my life greatly.
was always trying to make people
in my walk of life. It really changed
very positive and full of light. She
happy and make them laugh and I
really admired that about her. So I was very, very drawn to her. And through
conversations, she would tell me that
she was a Christian and that she works at her church. And when she invited
me, that was during the time when I was wondering, “Is this God?” So during
that, I thought, “Maybe this is a sign. Maybe I need to go to Alpha.”
I hadn’t really been to church before
that, so I was very nervous to go. But it was such an open atmosphere. It was
always very welcoming and warm. And there was an excitement in the room,
which felt really good. We all bounced ideas off each other and encouraged
each other to find the purpose that we were all there for.
Within the first month of Alpha there
was just this moment after I had heard
all of the facts and people’s testimonies that I started to figure out my own
testimony and really started to dive into my own experience. And within
that time, I said, “I do believe and I am so in this.”
2018 Annual Report
I think it just gives me more confidence my perspective into a more positive,
welcoming and bright view of the world. I’ve struggled with mental health and pretty intense anxiety, and through
Alpha, I felt this weight lifted off and it really was a great guide on how to continue my faith everyday.
It is Jesus who changes you, and I
think the big reason I want to share
my love for Alpha is just because it’s
an open door to walk in and learn how to be changed by Jesus, and it totally opened up that path of life for me.
“It is Jesus who changes you, and I think the big reason I want to share my love for Alpha is just because it’s an open door to walk in and learn how to be changed by Jesus, and it totally opened up that path of life for me.” Miranda
LOCAL CHURCH St. John’s, NL
Jason Normore recently planted a church in the heart of downtown St. John’s, Newfoundland. With many attending having little to no Christian background, he decided to run Alpha. What led you to run Alpha at LOCAL Church? Lucky for us, we ended up getting a bit of press, and a lot more people heard about us and gained some interest, including a surprising amount of people with no
Christian background at all. So I thought, “Man, pressure is on. What do we do now?” I was sitting with my wife and I said, “I think we have to do Alpha.” I couldn’t think of
anything else that would act as a proper introduction to what Christianity is all about.
How has running Alpha impacted you and your community? Alpha’s been very helpful in that there’s almost this pressure in a pastoral role that you have to have all the answers and you have to be able to fix everybody and do
everything. But a big thing we keep going back to as a church is, we don’t want our
church to be monologue driven, we really want it to be dialogue driven. I think that’s
true to our context where we eat together, and we’re neighbours, and we’re all part of this city together.
So Alpha was the perfect launching point of, here’s a topic, whether you agree with
it or not, whether you think this is lame or brilliant, let’s see where the conversation
goes. It gives people the opportunity to express to the people that are in their lives what they’ve experienced and to participate in continuing the story of God without having it all figured out.
2018 Annual Report
LOOKING AHEAD LI F E . S HAR E D I N ITIATIVE A church-inspired initiative to mobilize Christians in Canada to share life, faith and Jesus. In our conversations with church leaders, the primary issue that arises is the need for evangelism and how to be effective, particularly among the 30 and under
age group. The challenge is that most Christians donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t feel equipped or inclined to share the Gospel.
A recent Angus Reid study showed that only 29% of
religiously-committed people in Canada view evangelism positively. Evangelism is often seen as uncomfortable, unnatural or for a select few experts.
In response, we have started to pray and dream along with the church to imagine what it would look like if every Christian, in every church running Alpha, invited one person they share life with to explore the Christian faith on Alpha.
We want to focus on the simplicity of inviting one person to Alpha because we know that 80% of guests come because they were personally invited. As part of the
Life. Shared Initiative, we will be supporting churches with new resources to encourage and equip the whole church body in experiencing the joy of sharing Jesus and seeing friendsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; lives transformed.
This will be an ongoing engagement strategy as we advance our mission to inspire and serve the church across Canada in its mission to help people discover a relationship with Jesus.
80% of guests come to Alpha because they are invited by a Christian they are in relationship with already. 8
2018 Annual Report
New resources coming Summer 2019 alphacanada.org/LifeShared
Share life, share faith, share Jesus.
NEW RE SOURCE S TO MOBILI Z E THE WHOLE CHURCH
Resources to inspire the whole church to invite people to Alpha
Resources to train volunteers to run Alpha well
S U N DAY S E RVI C E
7 B E S T P R ACTI C E S & P R I N C I P LE S
A series of videos to play in the weeks leading up to Alpha We are supporting church leaders with
resources to leverage the weeks before their
Alpha launch and encourage the whole church to participate in invitation.
We have developed Alphaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s seven best practices by observing churches across the world that
have developed a culture of evangelism. Updated training videos and resources for Alpha Team Leaders will be launching this year.
S MALL G RO U P S A three-week video series that facilitates small group discussion about sharing faith with practical application. To complement the Sunday gathering, many churches meet mid-week in smaller groups. We have developed a pre-Alpha small
group series that is aimed at mobilizing congregations in the art of invitation.
7 B E S T P R ACTI C E S P R AYE R / E VAN G E LI S TI C P O S ITI O N E Q U I P P I N G A TE AM / H O S P ITALIT Y ALP HA TALKS / O P E N D I S C U S S I O N TI M E AWAY 2018 Annual Report
LOOKING AHEAD E M P OWE R I N G S TU D E NT S We will continue to come alongside youth leaders and youth ministries to empower the next generation with
specific resources and support and to encourage students in their church community to host Alpha for their friends. It has proven to be a transformative experience for students to facilitate conversations and create a welcoming space for their peers to come and discover the Good News of Jesus for themselves.
466 student-led Alphas in 2018
P R AYE R Prayer is foundational in everything we do. Nicky
Gumbel recently led a prayer initiative at HTB where each person prayed for and invited three people to Alpha. It resulted in a 40% increase in the number
of guests. We sense that thousands across Canada desire to share Jesus in the same way, so we are
mobilizing prayer within our staff and prayer network
as well as partnering with other ministries in different prayer strategies this year.
400+ prayer partners in 2018
D I G ITAL E N GAG E M E NT We are continually working on serving leaders and
teams the best way we can with regular digital platform improvements, up-to-date Alpha product, and email
and live chat support. Through ongoing feedback and
communication with leaders running Alpha in Canada and
around the world, we will be launching the new Alpha digital platform in 2019 to ensure that Alpha teams are equipped with new training resources and can connect with us to
receive additional support as they run Alpha in their church community.
14,000+ Alpha user accounts created 10
2018 Annual Report
(since May 2016 launch)
I N 2 019, WE HAVE A CO NTI N U E D FOC U S O N TH E S E KE Y AR E AS :
DO NATIO N S & I N CO M E : $6 ,0 3 4 ,8 49 General Donations
- Alpha Youth Series - Other
Joint Ministry Donations (Outside Canada)
Alpha Staff Support
- Alpha Events & Other Engagements
DO NATIO N S BY S OU RC E Individuals & Family Fdns.
M I N I S TRY E XPEN DITU R ES: $5, 478,8 0 0 Ministry Focus 41.66% - Church Support
- Course Support
Product & Resources for the Church - Alpha Youth Series
Administration 10.67% Joint Ministry (Outside Canada)
Fundraising 5.84% Events 2.83%
â&#x20AC;&#x153;We know that helping a person discover a relationship with Jesus is the first priority.â&#x20AC;? - Henry and Cory Zech, Alpha partners and volunteers My wife and I are so grateful to have become Christians through Alpha. Before being invited to Alpha, I was somewhat
familiar with the idea of God but did not have a relationship with Jesus. Alpha explained the Gospel so well that I finally got it! My wife saw the changes in me and decided to go check it out for herself. Since then, we have both wanted to support the Alpha team in any way to help others discover a relationship with Jesus Christ. We know that helping a person discover a relationship with Jesus is the first priority.
2018 Annual Report
PAR TN E R WITH ALP HA
Your support makes it possible for people to explore the Christian faith through churches all across Canada and impacts thousands of lives with the Good News of the Gospel. At Alpha Canada, our vision is the evangelization of Canada resulting in the transformation of the nation. Our mission is to inspire and serve the Canadian church in its mission to help people discover a relationship with Jesus Christ, using Alpha.
Find out more and give at alphacanada.org/give
Alpha Canada Alpha Ministries Canada
Toll Free 1.800.743.0899
New Westminster, BC
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