2012 ANNUAL REPORT 127 HESPELER RD CAMBRIDGE, ON N1R 3G9 519.621.6310 calvarycambridge.com
1. Pastor’s letter
2. Authentic Relationships
4. Missional Living
6. Spiritual Formation
TREASURER BOOK KEEPER David Schuetzkowski
10. Minutes 12. Financial Report
David Courey B.Sc.M.A., PhD. John Ratz B.Th. Graham Kivell Jamie Nelson, B.R.E. Joanna Ratz Paul Williams B.A. David Aide B.A.,M.T.S. Maureen Grant, PhD. Hugo & Celia Gomez
Veda Newell Liz Vanner
Phil Calberry David Hatt Arthur Matos Max Purkiss Eyon Richards David Schuetzkowski
Craig Macher Maryanne Bonnell Greg Heath
Board of CPA Charitable Property Corporation Rick Potter Harley Hatt David Heath
CALVARY ASSEMBLY 127 Hespeler Rd Cambridge, ON N1R 3G9 t. 519.621.6310 w. www.calvarycambridge.com t. @calvarynews f. facebook.com/calvarynews
REALPEOPLE . REALLIFE . REALGOD These three principles sum up the heart and soul of Calvary. They underscore the three central dimensions of Christian faith: authentic relationships, missional living and spiritual formation. And they refer to the genuineness, openness and reality with which we hope to engage God and others. 2012 has come and gone. It was challenging to face the year short-staffed by two, and a lot of energy was spent discovering God’s will for us in the days to come. I know some grew impatient with the process. I was one of them. But after months of praying, soulsearching and people-searching, too, we finally brought John Ratz on board.
You’d think bringing a Canadian back from the States is an easy matter. No thought could be further from the truth. It’s been challenging and costly both for the church and the Ratzes. We should thank them heartily for coming! John has proven to be an excellent complement to myself, and I am grateful for his team spirit, his insights, and his relational ministry. No sooner had they established a start date, than we were faced with Tim and Amanda Hyjek’s departure to Waterloo Pentecostal Assembly. It’s a great opportunity for Tim, and a chance for his ministry to grow, but once more we found ourselves short-staffed. Oh yeah… I almost forgot kids’ ministry. (Actually, I didn’t forget… I couldn’t forget!) Perhaps no search for staff has been more wearying than this. We have a premier facility, a great reputation for innovation, and a matchless children’s ministry. It has been a massive challenge to find a pastor to take on the role. After months of fruitless calls, a few near-misses, and being aware of the frustration of kids workers, we finally made a discovery. Perhaps the right person was here already… right under our noses. The decision to bring on Joanna Ratz has already proven to be a great one. I look forward to years of her fruitful service. I need to thank Paul Williams for his love of kids and kids ministry leaders, and who has now taken on more formally the direction of tech services, and the implementation of outreach. We begin 2013 with a fresh team, a fresh outlook, and by God’s grace a fresh fullness of His Spirit! In His Love, David 1
Real People… Authentic Relationships Love, acceptance and forgiveness. It’s what everybody craves. It’s what everybody needs. That’s the kind of church we long to be. We’re not there. As Paul says, “[We] have not yet attained it.” But like Paul, we press on, forgetting our failures, “and straining toward what is ahead, [We] press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:12-14).
get into a room with different people with so many different backgrounds and find a common bond!” The key in small groups is to create a safe atmosphere where it’s OK to be ourselves, ask our questions, and share our lives. “In my small group, I found the support of caring friends that helped me through a difficult time in my life,” commented Gary Stiver. The chemistry isn’t always there, and sometimes you have to search for the right group, but when it works, there’s nothing better. At a deeper level some people have needs that require more focussed care. For these folks, ministries like Emmaus Counseling Centre, Divorce Recovery and Celebrate Recovery (CR) provide a place of healing. Leanne Brown,
. REALPEOPLE What are the steps we are taking to get there? They come in a hundred different ways.
one of the leaders at CR rejoices about the ministry. “I think it’s wonderful.
First Impressions Ministry (FIM) continues to be the front door to almost everything Calvary. Between the ushers and greeters, the café personnel, and the welcome desk, our hope is to create an inviting atmosphere that says we’re real, and we care to all who walk in our front doors. Lynn Reinders who has recently returned to FIM gets it. “First Impressions are lasting impressions. It’s these lasting impressions that determine whether or not someone would want to come back to Calvary. That means we intentionally enter into each Sunday with one goal to help people take their next step towards Christ.”
CR is Christ-centred, it’s transformational, and best of all it’s saving lives! It’s really making a difference, bringing people together!”
But really caring can’t just happen at the front door. It has to go deeper than that. That’s where Small Groups come in. Brian Fox who recently moved to Cambridge with his wife Carme found their first connection at Calvary in a small group. “The church was so large,” Brian commented, “it was nice to
In the trying economic times we’re living through, people go through financial stresses as well. This past year between our benevolent ministry, Calvary Cares, led by Len and Jean Sneath; and the New Canadian Assistance Ministry led by Heidi Matos, over $20,000 of assistance has been given to people in all kinds of painful circumstances. Says Heidi, “It’s only because of the contributions of so many individuals and small groups at Calvary that we’ve been able to meet so many overwhelming needs and support families in their time of crisis.” All these ministry initiatives set aside, authentic relationships 2
are more than the sum of things we do. It’s about an attitude we bring, or maybe better a spirit we discover when truly being the church. Truly being the home of love, acceptance and forgiveness. It’s realizing that church is only as alive as the real people who make it up, and it’s only as strong as the authenticity of the relationships we’re willing to enter into.
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. LIFE REALGOD
Authentic Relationships: The Partnership of Acceptance and Challenge
Kim was raised in a less than ideal home environment. Alcohol and drugs were the norm, not the exception. Her friends would come to visit at her home so they could sit around and smoke pot with her father.
After seven years of marriage, Kim says, “I couldn’t stand the thought of another weekend of drinking. So I borrowed
a friend’s car and left my home and marriage.” She and the children ended up in a Women’s Shelter for a couple of weeks and then at a friend’s house for ten months. Fortunately, in 1999, Kim and Kevin were reconciled.
Kim and her husband have been a part of Calvary since 2003. She connected with Celebrate Recovery (CR) in 2008 and found a path that has brought wholeness and health to her life. In At 17, Kim and her boyfriend, Kevin, moved in together and were married when she was 19. Over the next few years, they the environment of CR, Kim found a safe place to share her story. As a part of the follow up program, Step Studies, she had a couple of children. They decided that Kim would stay found an Accountability Partner who was able to challenge her home with the children and they would live on to take greater steps forward. Kevin’s income. The financial strain that ensued increased In January of 2012, Kim had an experience that affirmed her her husband’s drinking and her own denial. Kim remained own growth and health. Because of the acceptance she had focused on being the best wife and mother she could be. experienced in Calvary over the years; and because of the 3
challenge to grow in her family were able to live out significant level.
Kim faith, Kim and her transparency at a
It’s one thing to have guests in our home for a few days. We can keep any negative “family dynamics” hidden for the short term. Having a guest in the house for a few months??? That requires courage and addressing our own insecurities... they are going to see the way we really are. “But that didn’t matter: She needed our help.” What Kim and her husband discovered was the strength God had forged in their marriage. And how deep both acceptance and challenge run in authentic relationships.
. REALPEOPLE REALLIFE
Missional Living: Embrace the Circumstance / Expect the Divine
that trip Wes was challenged by the commitment he made that day watching TV. He met a young person with dreams, but no hope. He gave him what little he had, and couldn’t believe the response. It was a turning point. “God changed my heart from Over the past 4 years Wes Landriault has been a vital part of being selfish to giving and it started with a pair of shoes and $3,” Student Ministries at Calvary, where he combines passion for young Wes recalled. people and music. But it wasn’t always that way. While he grew Fast forward two years. Wes’ passion to serve people grew into a up at Calvary, Wes’s heart and mind were far from God. It took a definite conversion experience to begin a process of transformation calling for the Congo. In June 2012 that dream became a reality. Wes departed for Bunia, northeastern Congo, for 6 weeks, that continues today. where he helped at a boys home and taught at a university. One step in that process occurred as Wes was chilling on his couch At the university Wes created and taught a basic computer watching TV one day. God began to move in his heart, stirring a course. The course introduced students to Microsoft Word and desire to make a radical difference in people’s lives. Wes says, “I Excel. The class surpassed expectations, learning to use the found myself opening up to God and allowing him to shape my internet, create a Facebook profile, and beginning to message heart.” What happened from there was completely unexpected. one another. “I still get Facebook messages from my students” In the fall of 2010, Wes joined a Calvary missions team enroute to Wes stated with a huge smile. Kenya. In Africa, God opened his eyes, “I saw how the little I have At each step of the way, though, Wes faced challenges, to give can make a huge difference in someone else’s life.” During 4
and opposition. Financial pressure to fundraise, was one circumstance to embrace. But God provided, through generous donors, many from Calvary. Another circumstance to embrace was ridicule and opposition from people questioning Wes’s wisdom setting foot in a country where conflict, war and danger was present. But God came through with safety and protection. Adapting to language barriers, and a strange culture was yet another. Through it all Wes has learned to expect God to break through. “When you follow the call that God has for you, even with the fear and humility you face, God will provide and protect you.” Embrace the circumstance, and expect the divine. Wes sums it up well. “God has called me to live out a life in which love is evident and selflessness is present.”
Real Life… Missional Living It is not the church of God that has a mission in the world, but the God of mission who has a church in the world. The church’s involvement in mission is its privileged participation in the actions of the triune God. -Tim Dearborn, Beyond Duty: A Passion for Christ, A Heart for Mission Why bother with church? Isn’t life busy enough? The case for church is a function of faith. If we believe in Christ, how can we resist the body of Christ? If Christ was sent into the world on a mission, how can it be any different for us?
Emil Bruner claimed, “The Church exists by mission, just as fire exists by burning.” These are lofty ideas. Can they be lived out in my everyday life?
At Calvary we believe church is part of the answer. The church is here to resource your personal mission from God. And you are here to participate in God’s mission through the church. The first of these notions is addressed in the next article, the second right here. Is Calvary Missional?
Through the Fall we were able to deploy the church’s energies in several ways. At Thanksgiving we passed our goal and raised 3,383 pounds of food for the Cambridge Self-Help Food Bank. Our collaboration with the Food Bank teamed us with their Backpacks for Book Worms project where we participated in the distribution of 932 backpacks to kids returning to school. We were able to share in their Christmas project along with the Salvation Army and the Firefighters of Cambridge, helping almost 800 families and distributing over 1400 toys. Along with our involvement with Operation Christmas Child, we were pretty involved in the Spirit of Christmas. Just as exciting were the several projects we participated in from November through December including dinners at major agencies.
the June’s Promiseland Art Gallery which raised $250 for the ministry Michael Bull Roberts and the Zimbabwe Village of Hope. Two missions trips this year went to Costa Rica and Haiti. Young adults took five hockey bags full of toothbrushes, toothpaste, socks and underwear, and lots of meals from Ontario Christian Gleaners here in Cambridge, working with missionary Alejandro Cetrulo. The team of 7 served the church, homeless people, and natives in the rural areas. Matt Dragos says, “It was a life-changing experience. To see how culture changes, and how other people live are just a few things I learned.” The Haiti Team experienced lifechange too, as they fed hungry children, provided goats for impoverished families and participated in building homes.
Bigger plans from the Justice League are underway for 2013, including the Inspire Justice conference, April 12 and 13 with Tony Campolo, Shane Claiborne and Dave Toycen, including several workshop speakers. Missional Ministry This passion to get the church outside our walls is taking form across various ministries at Calvary. We’ve watched Student Ministries making efforts move out of the church. While our Conestoga Campus Church service never properly took off, we have continued to have a presence there, connecting with over 200 students in one outreach or another. (“Food works best!” says Jamie Nelson—after all, it is a college!) The first Monday of the month is outreach night for our Young Adults. Our youth also worked together to assemble and deliver a dozen turkey dinners at Thanksgiving.
The purpose of this church has been to express its life outside its walls, both physically, and spiritually. Over the years, we have done that in a number of ways, but in 2012 we began retooling that through the lens of justice. The Justice League of Calvary has been working to redefine our notion of purpose. Meeting originally under the leadership of Gord and Anita Cooledge, and Tim Hyjek, leadership has moved Promiseland got involved in a few ways in 2012, including buying a few goats with their Bible Bucks. Most innovative was to Paul Williams, and the team working with him. 5
Stomp Day Camp this year, under the capable leadership of Megan Schmidt served 140 kids, and an average of 45-50 kids per week for 8 weeks. But above and beyond the call to day camp itself, the staff looked out for underprivileged kids. In one case they made meals, put on a birthday party and offered babysitting to a family in dire straits. Our Playground Ministry offers an open door to the community, having served over 3700 people from September to December. The Goal of Missional Living Programs and projects are great ways to get involved with God’s mission. But they aren’t enough. God is seeking a missional people whose lives are marked by an outward trajectory. The trick is discovering the intersection of God’s purposes with our daily lives. When that happens, anything is possible!
Spiritual Formation: The Journey of a Lifetime Becoming a Christfollower begins the journey of a lifetime. It’s a spiritual journey of faith in a God we cannot see, taste or touch, but a real one nonetheless. It’s a journey Jim has been on his entire life. It all started in the home of praying mother. Jim’s recollections of church were confused, one Sunday in Galt’s Revival Centre (Calvary’s former name) with his mom, and one Sunday in the Catholic church with his dad. Around the age of 12, Jim decided
. REALPEOPLE that of the options available, not going to church seemed best. “I had been doing for years in Jim’s life. His discipleship has just felt I didn’t need church,” Jim recalls. been shaped by involvement with small groups. Sharing life with a group of caring believers has nurtured Jim’s biblical Over the years Jim had the typical ups and downs of life. He was hunger. Some of the men he has come to know have had a married, had kids, found a job, settled down. But something was profound influence in his life. “Sometimes it’s in the moments missing. It was during those long years that his Mom, Winnie of sharing that you are able to be challenged and ask difficult circulated through prayer meetings and women’s groups, talking questions,” Jim observes. to pastors and any person who’d listen, always ending her conversations with, “Pray for my son, Jimmy.” The Sunday morning experience is key for Jim. “I always enjoy times of worship. I begin to feel more and more in tune Slowly, quietly, imperceptibly those prayers had an effect. But with God.” Jim’s connection with the Lord has given him a it wasn’t until Winnie’s death in 2010 that they bore fruit. Jim burden for justice. That passion is shown in his participation found himself back in church for the funeral. He hadn’t been in the Justice League. there for decades! Weeks after his mom was buried, Jim chanced a morning service. And then another. And then he began to ask It’s also led Jim to enroll in Bible College courses. “I don’t questions… And then he discovered C.S. Lewis, from a story know where God is taking me, but I know this is preparation in a sermon. “It seemed like the church I never needed all of a for something!” Spiritual formation really is a lifelong sudden felt like home.” journey, and who knows where it will take any of us! Jim became a Christfollower and God continued the work he 6
Real God… Spiritual Formation The moment of conversion… ecstasy! The moment of being taken up in worship, or prayer, or Bible reading… delight! But those aren’t the regular everyday moments of the spiritual experience. When we think of our walk with God in those terms, it raises the question of sustainability. How do Christfollowers sustain their spirituality between the mountain peaks of experience? How do believers actively pursue God’s mission for them in their everyday lives?
Worship experiences that connect life situations with divine possibilities are the goal of our Sunday services. We long to create an atmosphere that inspires our confidence in the God of the everyday who might break in to our lives at any moment. Education From birth to the grave we are only as alive as we continue growing. Some people are spiraling into the grave for years before death overtakes them. Others move from growing expanding vistas in this life to eternal expansiveness in the life to come.
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From kids ministry to Sunday teaching, our goal is a growing awareness of God’s grace in Jesus Christ.
Only individuals can be responsible for their personal spiritual lives just as they must be for their diet and fitness. But the church must be a place of inspiration, education and resourcing. Inspiration “Do not say in your heart ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’ (that is, to bring Christ down)” –Romans 10:6 Every pastor, especially worship pastors, feel like it’s their responsibility to bring heaven down every Sunday at 9:15 and 11:00. But it’s not. And it can never be. Emotion may be manipulated, excitement may be manufactured, but divine encounter only happens when God shows up. All we can do, pastors and congregations, together is to create the atmosphere of expectancy that God loves to show up in.
others! And it all started here! We provided The Prayer Tool Kit a seminar in March with Terry Bone, and another Bible seminar in May with Jennifer Shepherd called The Bible Tells Me So! Jen taught us about personalizing our study of Scripture. Both provided fresh perspectives on Bible and prayer.
Whether in Promiseland or Karate for Christ, God and His Word are present. Whether in small groups or from the platform on Sunday the goal is the same. Acceptance and Challenge. Grace means God accepts you in Christ, wherever you are, whatever you’ve done… But God loves you too much to leave you that way. Face the challenge of growth and change! Resourcing At Calvary we are taking the idea of resourcing your personal mission from God really seriously! This past year the emphasis was on Pray, Read, and Do Justice. Partnering with the Canadian Bible Society (CBS) we created a year-long internet devotional called The Least of These. It provided a justice-oriented perspective from the Bible on some of life’s situations. Hundreds of Calvary people subscribed, and CBS has sent it off to thousands of 7
Network magazine is a great resource, as well. Every issue contains not only essential information, but some great teaching in brief articles that enlarge on themes in the current sermon series. By far the best resourcing for sustaining a spiritual life is what happens in Small Groups. In these prayer-care-share clusters, people experience growing, caring friendships; share in their application of Scripture to everyday life, and in sincere prayer one for another. Experiencing a Real God has to take place in the real moments of our hectic, crazy lives. We’ll never get it down perfectly, but by God’s grace we can discover the acceptance of His grace and the challenge of His call.