Christ-centred â€˘ Spirit-empowered â€˘ Mission-focused
Editorial Team: Abigail Brown, Eric Crow, Katsaire Zee © 2018 • The Christian and Missionary Alliance in Canada Permission is given for up to 1,000 photocopies for use in a local church or classroom. Canada Post Agreement No. 40064689 ISSN 2369-9469 ISSN 2369-9477 (online)
Toilet Cleaning Sanctification
The Jaffray Project
Getting the Junk Out
On the cover: A visual reminder and invitation to go deeper in Jesus and further on mission. This was the powerful theme of our 2018 General Assembly, inspired by Ezekiel 47, which portrays the Holy Spirit as a river of life, flowing from the believer’s heart, and becoming an unstoppable force of transformation for the nations. “This is grace: trust that it is safe, step in deeper… let Him surprise you… Keep walking… for where there is water, there is life.” Written and performed by Andrea Payne. Filmed and edited by Anthem Creative. Watch the series at vimeo.com/cmaincanada
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An Adventure with Jesus
Come, Holy Spirit, Come
Deeper In Jesus, Fur ther On Mission Every new movement for God always begins with a courageous walk. As Albert Benjamin Simpson transitioned out of 13th Street Presbyterian Church to plant a new movement in New York City, he was letting go of financial stability, prestige, security, status, and future advancement. Each step moved him further away from all the things that humans crave in life, and toward a completely unknown and unpredictable future. It was the walk of radical faith. What motivated Simpson was the unquenchable thirst for more of God. As Simpson went deeper in Jesus he was compelled to go further on mission. Every worldly comfort seemed hollow and empty compared to the call to bring the Gospel to the nations of the world. Simpson was so captivated by the presence of His heavenly Father that the very fabric of his soul radiated with the redemptive purposes of God. In this issue of our Alliance Connection magazine, I want to invite you to catch a glimpse of this radical journey of going deeper within our Alliance family across Canada and around the world. From the transformational stories emerging in Quebec, to young individuals overcoming their fears as they step out into the nations, to walking alongside Background Muslim Believers in Yemen. My longing for us is to once again take a courageous walk! We must move past all the distractions and temptations and respond to the heart cry of our Father to reach the nations. We must go deeper before we can go further. ©
David Hearn, President of the Christian and Missionary Alliance in Canada
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Called to Worship
A Community of Scribes
Joy in Persecution
An Unforgettable Test Drive
What Are We Leaving Behind?
The Deeper Life in the Alliance
Swept Away in Love
Reaching the Unreached Through Samuel House
It Only Takes a Person Willing to Listen and Obey
Fervent, Intentional Prayer
The Ministry of Waiting
A Door Opened
Lead us to the Harvest
New and Emerging Faith Communities in Canada
Multiplication as We Grow Deeper in Jesus
Power Team Members Still in the Game
My Promise is No Longer the Same Because God Changed my Heart
Not my Convincing, But His
The Gift of Truth
We Share Christ. It's What We Do.
On A Journey to Go
An Urban Church Meets a Rural Bedroom Community
Deepening in Us God's Heart for the World in Mexico
Catching the Next Generation
Boston Pizza Decides to “Choose Change”
To i l e t C l e a n i n g S a n c t i f i c a t i o n Lorilee Jespersen
OAR Montreal brings together almost 200 youth and young adults from Quebec and across Canada for a 10-day discipleship and mission in the heart of Montreal. We live together at the Collège Notre-Dame in front of the beautiful l’Oratoire de St-Joseph, sleeping in classrooms, eating meals with one another, learning about God, and serving Christ together in the community. As you can imagine, preparing three meals a day for 10 days for that many people, keeping floors, dishes, and bathrooms clean is a lot of work and requires a lot of people power to pull off. To keep costs affordable for the program, we rely heavily on volunteers to make this happen. This year, God did something very special in sending us close to 30 teens and young adults to serve – we have affectionately named them “The Crew”. Almost all of
them came from Quebec and most had previously attended SOAR as a participant. Four of our Alliance churches were represented in this group along with kids from Pentecostal, Mennonite Brethren, and other church families too. As leaders, it was our desire that these teens and young adults would be discipled through the experience of serving others. Two mature young adults took on the job of not only overseeing The Crew’s work but also caring for them spiritually. The team met regularly for team time and devotion, as well as participated in all our evening sessions of worship and teaching. It became evident very quickly that going deeper in Jesus and further on mission for this group of young people was not going to be a glamorous event.
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SOAR creates space for some very beautiful moments where God encounters people through intimate worship and deep personal revelation that brings a whole new perspective to many who participate. The Crew, however, seemed to be in for another kind of transformational process this year.
God to change one another and help them honour their leaders and the work they had been given to do. Although this didn’t make the job any easier, they began to grow in community and love for one another, bonding together and finishing strong.
After two days, I wanted to quit 100%
Rising before 6:00 a.m. to prepare breakfast, staying up late into the evening to wash dishes after snacks, and scrubbing away dirty toilets sure created an environment where natural bents emerged. Tempers flared, some wanted to give up and go home, others stopped talking to one another altogether. By halfway through the program, things were at a bit of a crisis point, with some serious conflict hampering the work. One evening, through a beautifully led foot-washing ceremony, the team had a chance to confess their differences and affirm their love and care for one another. They committed to praying through their difficulties instead of letting them pile up, trusting
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Bihanca Alphonse, our logistics coordinator – one of the primary people overseeing The Crew, said afterward, “At first I thought this job was going to be easy, but after two days, I wanted to quit 100%. Because of God’s grace, I was able to keep going and I am very thankful. Working with this team has been one of the best experiences of my life.” Sometimes sanctification, going deeper in Jesus, happens in the kitchen or when cleaning a toilet. There is much hope for the Quebec church if we keep nurturing these kinds of young leaders in service and Christ-likeness through the experience of living and working in community. ª Lorilee Jespersen has been working with the C&MA within the St. Lawrence District for the last 20 years. She is married to Troy Wiesner and together they have four children and a dog. They are passionate about mobilizing people of all ages for missions and are excited by the opportunities to build God’s kingdom in Montreal, Quebec where they are surrounded by the nations.
Called to Wo r s h i p Hannah Willmann
n my first year at Ambrose, we sang “Here I am to Worship” in chapel. I inadvertently switched the order of the words in my head and realized it’s not just “here I am to worship”, right here, right now. It’s “I am here” at Ambrose, in Calgary, on this earth to worship God. That is why we are here. All of life is an opportunity to worship God. The hardest paper to write over the course of my degree was a paper on my calling. I didn’t think I could fill six pages describing my calling when I believed it could be summed up in three words,
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called to worship. Those words summarize the call from God to all who follow Him. That is why a “call to worship” opens most of our chapel gatherings at Ambrose. It reminds us of our relationship with God. After we gather, then we are sent. As a graduating university student, perhaps I should have written about sending, rather than calling. If I had done so, I would have reflected on the words of Jesus, “As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” (John 20:21). How had the Father sent Jesus? “The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour.” (Isaiah 61:1-2). This is what sets us apart. We are here to worship God, and then we are sent, just as Jesus was, to redemptive engagement in our world today. ¬ Hannah recently graduated from Ambrose University with a bachelor’s degree in music. She currently attends Harvest Hills Alliance Church (Calgary, Alberta). Photos courtesy of Ambrose University.
A Community of Scribes Clara*
id you give him the cheat notes?” I joked as my husband and I left the second Bible study with our Muslim friend, Vent, and his wife. We looked at each other in amazement. It felt like we were on holy ground as we watched the power of the sword and the Spirit at work in the prepared soil of a man’s heart.
We read Matthew 13 and it refers to the heart that hears and understands God’s word. When one finds such a heart, the insight just seems to supernaturally reveal itself from heaven. On Vent’s first reading of Matthew 13:52, he coined the terms a “community of scribes”. He reasoned that the word of God is such a treasure that we ought to be in communities where we are drawing out new and old things from the scriptures with one another. He noted that these communities need to read for obedience, not just information. Vent even continued to add that the information was so amazing that we owe it to others to tell them all about it! God is at work, preparing the hearts and minds of Muslims all around the world, more than in any time since the beginning of Islam. What a privilege to align with where He’s working and be able to watch the Lord lift off the veil and usher more and more into this community of scribes. «
* Clara’s full name is withheld for security reasons. Clara and her husband, Kent, moved to the Middle East in 1991 as international workers. Their passion is to worship God and pray for a disciple-making movement that spreads across the region. They have three boys, all born and raised in the Middle East. Learn more at cmacan.org/kcb cmacan.org · 9
Joy in Persecution Dan and Darrah*
or years we had been praying for this day to arrive when Background Muslim Believers1 (BMBs) from this country and the surrounding region would be able to gather and worship Jesus in Arabic. As we entered the home hosting an Easter celebration, we were humbled by the privilege of being in the company of these families who have all suffered for following Jesus. Each one of these Arab believers is a living example of “disciples who have picked up their crosses to follow Jesus.” But you would never be able to detect the extent of their hardships by just looking at them. Light bursts forth from their eyes, a stark contrast to when they were blinded in their years without Christ.
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Their joyful worship will not be contained, knowing that the bondage of Islam’s condemnation has been broken. While they are all taking a risk to meet together, it is evident that they adore Jesus far more than their fears of the enemy. They are convinced that “their light and momentary troubles are achieving for them an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.” (2 Cor. 4:17). These families have chosen the narrow road that leads to life. They have been abused, mocked, oppressed, and isolated for their faith. Many of them have been disowned by their relatives. One family is on the run from those seeking to kill them. Several others were not able to be at
this gathering because of increased threats to their lives after they publicly declared their allegiance to Christ. Our joy was tempered with the sober realization that for the people of this land, choosing to follow Jesus is choosing to suffer, and perhaps die. Persecuted and mistreated, these are our Arab brothers and sisters. © *Dan and Darrah’s full names are withheld for security reasons. They serve as international workers in the Middle East. They work among an unreached people group where less than 0.5% of the national population is Christian. They are passionate about seeing the indigenous people of the land come to know Christ and form reproducing faith communities. Learn more at cmacan.org/ddl Background Muslim Believers are Christians who were previously of Muslim faith.
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An Unforgettable Te s t D r i v e Stuart McKnight
autious and calculated was my posture going into the Soul Care Conference recently hosted here at Vernon Alliance Church. I had used the words “test drive” to describe what we were going to be doing. As the registration numbers rolled to about 270 people, it felt a little bit more than the test drive I had envisioned. Rob Reimer came and presented his teaching with much conviction and clarity. The core material of identity, repentance, and forgiveness was not new to any of us. The piece I was waiting for with apprehension was the deliverance talks. How would this go? Would it erupt into a gong show? Would it get flaky and annoying with lots of swooning, twitching, and falling? Grateful to say, none of the above happened. It was in fact a profound and transformative experience for many in our church including myself. Rob studied the theology and history of deliverance and has developed a ministry method that is unlike any I have experienced. It is peaceful, precise, understated, and very effective.
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We did hours of ministry with over a hundred people, with virtually no drama or disturbance. When there were little moments, they were quickly and calmly resolved. It was a beautiful thing to witness our 10 prayer teams quietly ministering away at the front of the church to “set the captives free”, applying Jesus’ prayer to “deliver us from evil”. Someone described the weekend as a trajectorychange weekend, but I disagreed. I prefer to see it as an enlargement experience, an invitation to take responsibility for more ground, to appropriate more of the gospel. My cautious and calculated test drive became a holy ambush in the best possible way! ª
Stuart McKnight has been the Lead Pastor of Vernon Alliance Church (Vernon, British Columbia) since 2004. Originally from Scotland, Stuart is known for his love for theology, insightful teaching, dry humour, and passion for rugby. He is married to Teresa and they have eight chickens, two dogs, and six children.
W h a t A r e We Leaving Behind? Maria Sikal
he kids have grown and left the roost, it was time to complete my theology degree. As I was going through all the options, I sensed Pathways was where God wanted me to be. Right from the beginning, I was able to re-engage in my studies with a deeper passion to abide in Jesus, serve His church, and a desire to seeing souls added to the kingdom. The course that impacted me most was Missional Theology. The timing of this course and my second field study was impeccable. It was amazing to recalibrate my mindset that God is the God of mission with scriptures revealing His missional intent from the very beginning according to His will. The Lord began to take hold of my heart, inducing a passion to understand the history of the church in Canada. He continued to dig deeper to unearth the old wells of our community, Ingersoll,
and how this little town was historically built on the foundations of Christendom, and raising the question of why it has generationally diminished. This birthed a documentary study of God’s missional providence in our community’s creation, “The Project – Ground Zero”. The study engages residents and pastoral leaders with questions that reveal our current state, to awake a community of disciples to re-establish what our forefathers had created, to raise the question – what heritage is this generation leaving behind? ¬
Maria Sikal is currently working as an HR Manager with a software company while continuing her theological studies through Pathways School of Ministry and Emmanuel Bible College where she hopes to attain her degree in theology and human studies. Maria currently attends Crossroads Alliance Church (Ingersoll, Ontario).
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The Deeper Life in the Alliance Paul King
Stirring Mission Through the Deeper Life
.B. Simpson envisioned engaging an “alliance” of people from all denominational backgrounds united around the common desire to reap a harvest of souls and the fourfold gospel of Jesus Christ as Saviour, Sanctifier, Healer, and Coming King. The unique vision of the Alliance has been to marry mission and the deeper life.
The Alliance frequently uses the term “deeper life”, but Simpson’s preferred term was “the higher life”. For him, the deeper life is the first step of the highest Christian life: Depth—The Consecrated Life of crucifixion, dying to self—“Not mine, but Thine.” We surrender all to live for Him, not ourselves. Height—The Supernatural Life of holy, overcoming, resurrection power—“Not I, but Christ.” Once we surrender, Jesus raises us up again through the baptism with the Spirit to a supernatural life of love, joy, and peace, and to overcome sin, self, Satan, and the world. We rise to the heights, what Jesus calls the abundant life (John 10:10).
The unique vision of the Alliance has been to marry mission and the deeper life.
Breadth—The Overflowing Life of loving, sacrificial service— “Not myself, but my brother.” Hunger and thirst for God bubble over with God’s heart— compassion for the weak and hurting and passion for lost souls. We “launch out into the deep”, as Simpson puts it, rescuing others from the pits and bondage of their lives, lifting them up to a higher life of freedom, healing, A.B. Simpson c. 1885 "Jesus Only"
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hope, victory, and restoration in Christ.
Stirring Mission Through the Deeper Life Emphasis on the deeper life did not cause the early Alliance to become so inwardly focused on holiness that they neglected mission. Rather, it stirred them to mission, as it should for us in the Alliance today. Deeper Life Stirs Passionate Prayer. The early Alliance became an active “Prayer Alliance”, praying in the harvest. Early Alliance meetings, including Annual Councils, sometimes featured “praying through”, all night prayer meetings for seeking God, passionately praying for revival, and reaching the lost. Deeper Life Stirs Holy Spirit Power for Mission. Historically, the Alliance has been an Acts 1:8 movement, “When the Holy Spirit comes upon you, you shall be my witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and to the remotest parts of the earth.” The sanctifying baptism with the Spirit stirred Alliance people to share their faith with supernatural signs following. During the founding of the Alliance in 1887 at Old Orchard, Maine, a disabled woman on crutches was dramatically and instantly healed. Her two sisters confessed faith in Christ as a result, confirming to Simpson the deeper life message and calling of the Alliance. Deeper Life Stirs Revival. In the wake of the Welsh Revival of 1904, the Alliance anticipated that the end times were approaching, and prayed with the expectancy that God was going to pour out His Spirit increasingly in “The Latter Rain Revival.” The revival was poured out beginning in 1906 with signs and wonders following. We are in the latter of those latter days now. Let us pray again, let it rain, Lord!
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Grimsby Park Convention • 1900
Deeper Life Stirs Passionate Mission Focus. Emphasis on holiness did not lead Alliance people to retreat from the world, but rather to engage the world in relevant ways to reach the culture of the time. As Elton Trueblood writes, “The Church is never true to itself when it is living for itself, for if it is chiefly concerned with saving its own life, it will lose it.” Simpson added on declaring, “the present generation must reach the present generation,” by bringing the church to the people, through street preaching, holding services in theatres and dance halls, and using popular, contemporary music styles of his time. Deeper Life Stirs Compassionate Love for All. The Alliance reached out to the unreached and unchurched by every possible means. Simpson felt a burden to reach out to those who “felt themselves alienated from the formal church, but not from the Lord. . . . I left my church to form a church for the people of all classes based on absolute freedom.” Less than a decade after the Civil War, he broke down racial barriers, welcoming African Americans in his meetings. The early Alliance took ministry to the streets, ministering to prostitutes and the poor, and providing weekly healing services and healing homes for the sick and depressed.
Deeper Life Stirs Self-Sacrificial Generosity. Dying to ourselves and being filled with the Spirit stirs us to give generously and sacrificially. Without extravagant appeals for money, Alliance people gave their all spontaneously and voluntarily. It was not uncommon in early Alliance mission meetings to see watches and jewelry in the offering plates.
Catch the Vision!
Paul King is pastor of Arise Christian Fellowship in Lafayette, Indiana. He has a doctor of ministry degree as well as a doctor of theology degree. Paul is also an Alliance historian and theologian, conference speaker, and consultant. He is author of 11 books, including Come Up Higher, God’s Healing Arsenal, Genuine Gold, Creating a Healing Community, and more.
People all around us today still need to experience “full salvation”—the deeper life in Christ—Jesus as Healer of their broken bodies, souls, minds, and hearts. Our message of Jesus as Sanctifier is needed more than ever in our self-centered generation for power to live victoriously over sin, Satan, and temptation. A fresh vision of Jesus as our Coming King stirs us to reach the world for Christ. Let us, as a deeper life Alliance, be an oasis in the desert for the refreshing, thirst-quenching living water of Jesus, providing shade, shelter, and fruit to weary, hungry, and thirsty travelers. Of hope, help, and healing to the hurting. «
Prayer Meeting in Nyack, New York for China Missions • 1915-1916
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Swept Away in Love Curtis Peters
afaelito and his growing house church hunkered down as the storm came close. Many from their community sought refuge in their home because they had nowhere else to go. They knew that Irma was approaching. What they didn’t know was that it would hit close to their community as a category 5 hurricane,
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bombarding them for 24 hours and leaving a trail of destroyed homes. They didn’t know they would be without power for several days and that many of the nation’s crops would be destroyed, resulting in food shortages and increased prices for months to come.
When they finally came out from their shelter, they immediately took their entire church savings and began giving to people as much as they could to help patch their roofs or buy some food. One unbeliever was griping to his believing wife about how the church was not concerned with their suffering at the very moment they showed up to help! This was just the beginning of God’s redemptive work in this disaster. Through the generous support of the Alliance family in Canada and other nations, along with another relief organization, the church has turned this national crisis into a cause for rejoicing. Rafaelito’s church has built 10 houses from scratch for those affected, and installed power lines for a whole section of the community. He got up several times at four in the morning to travel 40 km into the country to collect wood. The unbeliever whom Rafaelito bought the wood from was so impacted by his sacrifice that he gave him extra so they could build one more house! In the last few months, over 60 new people from their community have started
regularly attending the church. The amazing thing is, this is just one example. Over 50 of our Alliance house churches have started compassion ministries to the most vulnerable people in their communities, such as the elderly and disabled. Twenty of these churches have developed business plans to raise funds so they can continue these ministries longterm. Instead of focusing on their own needs, they are reaching out in love to those who are even more needy than themselves, and reports of people coming to Christ through their testimonies continue to come in from across the island. God has taken the seed of their suffering and transformed it into a mighty harvest that continues to multiply for the kingdom. How might He do the same in your life today? ©
Curtis Peters is an international worker in the Caribbean Sun region. He and his wife, Tricia, have three boys, Lucas, Micah, and Liam. His passion is investing in leaders who help the body of Christ extend God’s kingdom so that the greatest number of people will love Jesus in the greatest possible way. Learn more at cmacan.org/ctp
Reaching the Unreached Through Samuel House Steve and Heidi*
ver 80 distinct nations populate this city, including a large number of unreached people groups from the Middle East. This city, a multicultural commercial center in Latin America, is where Samuel House is located. The multicultural aspect of this city gives Latin American international worker candidates a rich opportunity to build relationships with a focused people group, as well as the opportunity to experience many of the initial aspects of leaving their home country to live abroad on mission.
The candidates of Samuel House are predominantly bivocational workers, who use their respective vocations to add value to a community while building bridges for the gospel. On one occasion, a number of candidates facilitated a “make it better project” in a local school within their focused people group. Through this volunteer initiative, the candidates helped students outfit a nurse’s station by raising funds to purchase basic first-aid equipment. The students also had the opportunity to complete a Level 1 First-Aid Certificate training taught by Samuel House’s resident nurse. cmacan.org · 19
In another project, a book drive was held for the library of the school while candidates helped to reorganize and catalogue. After receiving almost 100 book contributions, literacy awareness was elevated as they were taught on the benefits of reading and the use of the library. The candidates brought value to the school, they built credibility among the students and their parents. Now the faculty welcomes future candidates from Samuel house to continue this relationship as the Program Director notes, “The students of your cultural training center are welcome to come back anytime. They added so much value to our school and the students and teachers all loved and respected them. Will you send more of your people next year?” Samuel House candidates are there to learn, but in that process of preparation, God is opening doors for the kingdom to be taken further and deeper among a least-reached people group in this multicultural city. ª
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*Steve and Heidi’s full names are withheld for security reasons. They are facilitators of Samuel House, a 10-month cross-cultural training program located in the southern Caribbean Sun region to help equip and raise up a new generation of Latin American international workers to reached the unreached, partnering with the Latin American Alliance. Learn more at cmacan.org/shm
Get Involved! Elisa Brown
ears were streaming down his face. “This never happens,” he laughed embarrassed. “I thought I was going to be the one inspiring change, not the other way around.” I smiled as I handed him a tissue. I didn’t say what I was thinking, this always happens. This is what I love about short-term missions (STMs). They are God’s classroom for us all; lessons of dependency, humility, God-awareness, responsibility to the nations, gratefulness, and much more. The way we do short-term missions however needs to be thought about differently. Do the STMs fit into long-term mission strategy? Is it just missions tourism? Thankfully, the Spirit continues to lead the Christian and Missionary Alliance in Canada (C&MA) as leaders set guidelines to shape strategies, and eyes and ears to adapt to what God is already doing. It is undeniable that God is growing His people through STMs. Through Envision Canada, the C&MA has aligned short-term trips to build into the strategies of international workers on the ground. Short-term trips through Envision will allow international workers to get their jobs done with the bigger picture in mind. Here in the Caribbean Sun region, short-term teams will have the opportunity to work with indigenous groups that are considered leastreached through Inca Link. The teams may not go into the Amazon basin per se, but they encourage the national leaders who do go. Living on mission includes being proactive in reaching the nations, so what are you waiting for? ¬
Elisa Brown was born to missionary parents, Jack and Jean Shannon, in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Along with her husband Rich, she has been serving in Latin America since 1995. They currently focus their work around youth and hosting Envision teams. Learn more at cmacan.org/reb
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The Jaffray Project
he Jaffray Project was introduced in 2016 to raise awareness, prayer support, and funds to send and support International Workers (IWs) ministering to least-reached people groups. The Christian and Missionary Alliance in Canada is committed to Jesus and His mission. We want to bring access to Jesus.
Donations to Jaffray received from:
Total Jaffray expenses * from June 2016 to December 2017 Jaffray Expenses include IW allowances, travel, vision trips, and additional health costs *
Since launching the Jaffray Project, 20 IWs have been supported in reaching the Urban Professionals in Mexico City, Wolof, Fulani, Yazidis, and Balinese Hindus. Learn more about the impact of these donations at cmacan.org/jaffray «
Global Advance Fund
Wolof & Fulani
E X P EN S ES
N UMB ER O F FUL L-TIME IWs
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EX PEN SES
N UMBER OF F U LL-TI ME I Ws
$913,700 Thank you
Total Jaffray expenses * from to the churches and individuals that June to December 2017 made 2016 this possible through generous givingExpenses to theinclude Jaffray Jaffray IW Offering allowances, from travel, vision trips, and additional health costs 2016–2017. *
Donations to Jaffray received from:
Global Advance Fund
EX PEN SES
$115,200 N UMBER OF F U LL-TI ME I Ws
Six 12.6% TOTAL DONATIONS
21.0% TOTAL DONATIONS
Balinese $191,500 Hindus EX PEN SES
N UMBER OF F U LL-TI ME I Ws
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The Jaffray Project This year, the C&MA in Canada has added two new least-reached people groups, the Yemenis and the Egyptian Arabs, to the Jaffray Project.
Who are the Yemenis? Christianity was once well represented in Yemen, but it was almost completely wiped out by the 7th Century Muslim conquest. According to tradition, Shem founded the city of Sana’a, and the Queen of Sheba reigned in Yemen when she sought wisdom from King Solomon some three millennia ago.1 Religion in Yemen is mostly made up of the two principal religious groups of Islam; Sunni and Shi'a. About 65% of the Muslim population is Sunni, and 30% is Shi'a. The Sunnis are predominantly in the
south and southeast, and there are mixed communities in the larger cities.2 Neither the constitution nor other laws protect freedom of religion in Yemen. Islam is the state religion, and that Shari'a (Islamic law) is the source of legislation. Muslims and followers of religious groups other than Islam are free to worship according to their beliefs, but the Government prohibits conversion from Islam and the proselytization of Muslims.3 The Yemeni mission is one of humanitarian aid that the C&MA international workers have partnered with organizations to address. For more than three years, Yemen has been embroiled in a deadly conflict that has resulted in a minimum of 10,000 civilian deaths, additionally, at least 10,000 children have died from preventable causes such as diarrhea, cholera, malnutrition, and respiratory tract infections due to a chronic lack of medical supplies and staff. However, in the shadows of this devastating conflict, Yemen’s indigenous, Christ-centred faith communities of believers of Muslim background, also known as Background Muslim Believers (BMB), have continued to grow at an accelerated rate. International workers come alongside BMB to empower and encourage these leaders around the country as they report an increase in spiritual openness. Leaders from these communities want to expand their current humanitarian distributions to target new communities with emergency relief. They also want to initiate sustained emergency relief activities in a region with a population of 3 million, and where they have only completed a few small pilot projects to date. 1
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Who are the Egyptian Arabs? The culture of Egyptian Arabs is centred around the Islamic religion, it shapes every aspect of life. Personal choice is less relevant and strict observance to the teachings of the Quran legislates how Muslims live. There is, however, a growing disillusionment, especially among the younger generation, towards Islam as a result of what has been taking place in the name of “Allah”. Namely, that of Muslims killing one another. Status of Egyptian Arabs is determined by what family you are born into, your level of education, job, position, and prosperity. All of which gives either recognition or degradation. However, Muslims believe that their outcome in life is determined by God. Therefore, they must be content with what God has decided for them. Although many are not satisfied, they will say “praise be to God” yet show dissatisfaction about their lot in life. Women are seen as child-bearers and given by God for man’s pleasure. For this reason, the men regard their children as more important than their wives. Men pray together on a regular basis whether it be in the streets or at the mosque as it reflects their solidarity as a majority faith.
The C&MA international workers are developing friendships with Egyptian Arabs that give opportunities to develop trust and openness and introduce them to Jesus. Workers have discovered that this level of friendship is established and developed over time. Trust must be earned. Often, after years of engaging, conversations move from a surface discussion about the weather, to talking about marriage, family, inner peace, and joy which gives further opportunity to introduce the teachings of Jesus. There is also much opportunity to meet with the people by becoming involved with them in their holy days like Eid Al-Fitr, which is celebrated at the end of Ramadan and Muslims usually give zakat (charity) on this occasion. It is important to engage in gift giving as well which establishes respect and honour in this shame-honour system. Workers also take advantage of Christian holy days such as Christmas and Easter to give gifts to show their dedication and honour to Christ. © Visit cmacan.org/jaffray to learn more about the Jaffray Project and least-reached people groups.
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Envision Summit Envision Summit is an annual gathering of young leaders from across the Alliance family, coming together to worship, to learn, and to wrestle through hard topics. In 2018, Summit took place in Vancouver where we dove into the topics of local and global missions, as well as a time of repentance and deliverance through soul care. What did God reveal to these young leaders in Vancouver? Here is what they have to say. For more information on Envision Summit, visit envisioncanada.org/summit ª
Myleen Bravo – Montreal, QC
James* – Toronto, ON
We can’t do ministry without having a healthy soul, and the younger we do that, the better. Soul care should be mandatory for everyone in ministry! This is my second year attending Envision Summit and yet God worked into another layer of my heart. I thought I would be helping others more this year at Summit as I did soul care last year, but God totally brought different things into the light, a different layer. It was painful but necessary as I move into this next season of where God is calling me to. It was beyond my expectation even a second-time-around because it was a lot of work on my soul.
The open sharing in the small group discussions were better than what I was anticipating. We were able to process some of the things we were learning together, there was mutual encouragement, finding wholeness, and trying to be a blessing to others. We were able to express some of our frustrations in a healthy environment.
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Zach Hair – Calgary, AB
Amanda Chan – Toronto, ON
Envision Summit was different, I felt challenged in our small group discussions. I don’t get challenged with those kind of questions a lot, it was great to just sit and have really hard questions asked back to me. It was refreshing and left me with things to think about. Churches should send leaders to Envision Summit because it is uncomfortable. Yes, it wasn’t an easy week and that’s what I appreciated the most. Growth isn’t always easy, we need to be okay with being uncomfortable and tackling the tougher issues. Leaders are always learners, Summit is where we can learn and be challenged about why we do what we do.
What God taught me through the Envision Summit was that His church possesses a diversity that is beautiful yet disorienting. It came to my attention how important it is for the church to address how we ought to celebrate intercultural and intergenerational perspectives. I quickly learned how God was at work in all of our lives in very different ways while still being consistently Himself. He taught me that all parts of the Trinity are necessary in missions to understand, embrace, and celebrate.
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It O n l y Ta k e s a Pe r s o n Willing to Listen and Obey Mélodie St-Pierre
a maison de mon Père, translated as My Father’s House, is a non-profit located in Rimouski, Quebec, where individuals and families can experience the tender love of God and connect with the Christian faith no matter where they are at spiritually. My Father’s House seeks to be mission-focused and, ultimately, selfsustained. Since the doors opened on April 3, 2017, God has been moving in tremendous ways with leaders
and individuals from various Christian backgrounds coming together to make this project possible. The staff of over 20 employees has begun to catch the vision and many have had the opportunity to engage in a process of reconciliation with the Christian faith. The board of directors, composed equally of evangelical and Catholic leaders, is ensuring that the environment and activities will foster a climate of respect between the different church families.
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La maison de mon Père began as a dream, a dream carried from three years of prayer and discernment before the project came into being. This dream began in the heart of Nathalie St-Pierre, a business woman from an Alliance church. Through much loss and hardship, Nathalie decided to trust and obey the Holy Spirit, giving a great deal of what she had left to make this project possible. Inspired by a profound sense of calling, she bought and renovated an old Catholic church, turning it into a Christian multifunctional center. Here, people can eat at the restaurant, use the reception room, visit the Christian bookstore and gift shop, enjoy the free Wi-Fi, or simply come to just listen to the worship music playing all day long. As they come in, they are welcomed by staff who long to share with them a loving testimony of the God who cares about them (John 13:35). Volunteers and chaplains connect with the visitors and can engage in various activities such as conferences, workshops, Christian movie night, or daily Bible meditations. For many Quebecers afraid of Christianity and, especially, Christian leaders, it is a powerful testimony to know that believers can live in unity and journey with them no matter where they are at spiritually. Slowly but surely, they are learning to discover what unites all believers, a profound and respectful desire to be intimate with Jesus and to make His great love known. It all began with a person willing to trust and obey. It always does. What will begin with you? ¬ Mélodie St-Pierre is a graduate of Ambrose University with a Master of Arts in Leadership and Ministry. She is an official worker with the C&MA and currently works at La maison de mon Père (Rimouski, Quebec) where she specializes in conferences and workshops while assisting the main chaplain.
An Adventure with Jesus Darren Herbold
s long as I can remember, adventure called my name. Not in an extreme sports kind of way, but this intangible pull to try new things, to see new places, and to learn more about how God made me and who He has called me to be. While I couldn’t articulate this early on in my life, it was still present. It was consistently pushing and pulling me to this adventure I knew I was created for and yet didn’t fully understand. I was 12-years-old and sitting on a couch reading a Christian magazine for teens (Breakaway magazine for any that might remember that classic). I honestly don’t remember much about the magazine except that every year, they would advertise these one- to three-month international mission trips for teens and young adults. At that moment as I was reading and learning about
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all these opportunities, there was this excitement that began to build in me. This wasn’t your average, run-of-the-mill emotional response. This was different. These trips and opportunities I was reading about sparked something within me and it all swept over me in this indescribable rush. I knew I wanted to go! I immediately ran and asked my mom, who I am sure thought I was crazy, and she quickly dashed my dreams by saying, “No, of course you can’t go.” This was very reasonable as I was only twelve years old, but she gave me hope with a few parting words when she said, “When you graduate high school we can talk about it.” I never forgot. During my final high school year, the trips were still offered and my discernment process was incredibly easy. I simply looked for a location that was the most remote I could find and filled with the most potential, from my limited experience, for adventure. I found it. That summer I left for Sao Tome, Africa. I wasn’t entirely sure what I was all in for, but I knew I was created for something just like this. I would describe that experience as extremely difficult, deep, adventure-filled, Jesusfocused, and completely life-transforming. That trip completely changed my life. You have likely experienced something similar. Maybe not internationally, or maybe somewhere more remote, but there is a good chance you can recall a moment when God took you out of your comfort zone. When you felt Him kindly push you and gently bring conviction to your life to serve Him with greater devotion and passion. A change in our environment changes our comfort level. Or perhaps better said, it changes the false sense of control we feel we have in our lives and the world surrounding us. These new environments, especially when they include godly leaders who are providing direction and encouragement, often create moments of deep reflection and sensitivity to the Holy Spirit that otherwise aren’t as easily accessible to us. It is in these very moments when we often respond to Him. Not only does He bring renewal to our lives, but He births a deep passion within us to tell everyone that Jesus saves, that Jesus is alive, and that Jesus changes absolutely everything. And we as a church family in Canada need to empower and release as many young leaders as we can to bring this good news to the world. Nevertheless, it always begins with a moment, a moment that provides an opportunity for decision, to adventure deeper with Jesus.
I would describe that experience as extremely difficult, deep, adventure-filled, Jesusfocused, and completely life-transforming.
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Church family, these moments are the very reason that Justice Semester has been birthed. Envision Canada helps to identify and develop future missional leaders who innovate, establish, and strengthen communities of faith in key urban environments. Justice semester is 12 intense weeks in Thailand. Young leaders, aged 18 to 22, will be living in community with 8 to 12 new friends all the while adventuring deeper with Jesus and discovering His heart, not only for the world but His deep passion for them and His call on them to serve the world. Simply, it is a deep dive into the Word of God, a time ruthlessly focused on Jesus, in the middle of a new environment that pushes people out of their comfort zone, and calls them to respond to Christ the King. As a 12-year-old boy, I couldn’t articulate the call of Jesus in my life very well. I could, however, articulate this innate desire towards something more, something bigger, this call towards adventure. Little did I know the adventure that would await me on that trip, now so many years ago. Nothing compares to the thrill and joy of adventuring deeper with Jesus. We as an Envision team, including the many pastors that are helping to teach and lead this semester, are praying and asking young men and women to consider this as a next step in their adventure with Jesus Christ. We need you. Would you help spread the word and share this opportunity with those in your circle of influence? « Darren Herbold was the Senior Associate Pastor at Beulah Alliance Church (Edmonton, Alberta) before sensing God’s call to Thailand. Four years ago, Darren and his wife began serving as international workers in Thailand. Visit justicesemester.com to learn more.
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Fer vent, Intentional Prayer
Christ through God's Word. This has spurred women on to not only attend themselves, but to also invite friends to look at what the Bible says about who we are in Christ and how we should live daily in community with Him and with one another. God used all of this and gave us the privilege of baptizing four new believers on April 22, 2018!
Becoming followers of Christ and being taught by the Holy Spirit has been so natural for Mizuho, Masayo, and Yuko that when they realize what God used to draw them to Himself, they naturally share this with others and invite them to participate. These women have only known Christ for a short time, but are sharing scripture and resources with one another, encouraging one another, sharing their faith, and of course, praying for one another.
t started with fervent, intentional prayer. Prayer for Ambrose OnSite interns, Matt and Marie Klassen. Prayer walk in preparation for a prayer team coming from Ontario. This prayer team lifted up each one of the international workers on the ground. Prayer groups and a prayer network developed as a result, faithfully supporting the team here in Tokyo, Japan through prayer.
As we head into our home assignment year and prepare this group of new believers and seekers to support one another as Christ's body, we are amazed at how the Holy Spirit is already leading them to use their gifts, and natural clusters of friends and experiences to reach others for Christ. These women are all young moms that have been encouraged by what the Bible has to say about raising their children. Their passion and desire are to help and nurture other young moms who are unsure of their own parenting skills. Through these interest groups, they recognize that God brings opportunities to share their faith and His love in a practical way that women can understand.
Intentional, frequent invitations to individuals to share our lives resulted in an interest in knowing the God whose love they had encountered while spending time with our team. Monthly events known as Community Gatherings create an environment to experience, question, and learn about the God of creation, salvation, and redemption.
By God’s grace, He has provided mature believers and a pastor in the community to nurture and provide leadership during our absence. We're prayerfully looking forward to see how God continues to lead and grow this community. ©
Japanese women that we have encountered often felt a sense of “not enough”. We provide a safe place to share these feelings and in turn teach them we are enough in
Carol Woon, along with her husband Doug, has been serving as international workers in Japan since 1987. They have been in Shiohama, Tokyo for over four years working with young families. Learn more at cmacan.org/dcw
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T h e Mi n i s t r y of Wa i t i n g Kaura-lea Dueck
earning about sex trafficking stirred my heart with the pain of human suffering and my ambition to seek justice for the oppressed. When I felt called to serve on a newly forming team among the exploited and least-reached in Thailand, there was excitement at the prospect of eventful front-line work. I arrived
in Phuket nearly three years ago, and the dust of my glamorous expectations has since settled. In its wake, I’ve discovered something more profound than the imagined whirlwind dramatic liberation; I’ve discovered the ministry of waiting.
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Through His infinite grace, Jesus has called our team to be a part of His plan for Thailand, and He is the author of the extent and effect of our part in His cosmic story. In this chapter, our role has been waiting on God and waiting with His people. While initially, it felt surprisingly slow-paced, now I believe there are few tasks more exhilarating than being present with God and others. God desires that we know Him and know who we are in Him, both personally and as His body. He is willing to spend time teaching us our identity, and still, He is always working things together, waiting for the time He prepared in advance. We pray for God’s presence while we wait. After years, we’ve seen God drawing more believers here to revive this spiritually dark land. After months, we’ve seen God moving mountains of Thai policy in favour of police partnership and anti-trafficking efforts. And after hours in a police station with a victim of sexual exploitation, we’ve seen Jesus doing deep soul work in her while holding her and whispering of His love. There is beauty in waiting. 34 · Fall 2018
As followers of Jesus, we get to wait with Him in prayer as He develops our Christ-centred identity, wait on Him in obedience as He brings His kingdom plans to fruition, and wait with others in love as they experience God's transforming grace. Jesus is never impatient, rushed, or worried. He waits with us, and He waits for us. He is “not wanting anyone to parish, but everyone to come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9). If we find ourselves in a slow season, perhaps there is a deeper phenomenon underway. “Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; therefore he will rise up to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!” (Isaiah 30:18). The most daring thing to do might be to wait with God, trusting His power, and seeking His presence for ourselves and this world. ª Kaura-lea Dueck is an international worker in Phuket, Thailand, working with the Justice and Compassion team known as For Freedom International. She joined the team after graduating from Ambrose University in 2015 with a degree in intercultural studies. Kaura-lea’s home church is The Exchange Church in Calgary, Alberta. Learn more at cmacan.org/kd
A Door Opened Bill and Donna Dyck
group of First Nations people sat on the corner I walked past each day. Their hands were often out in hopes of assistance and I helped them when I could. My desire though was for their community to accept me and I prayed to that end regularly. One day a woman from our church asked me to come to the hospital to pray for her sick daughter. When we arrived in the ICU, I recognized the young woman, Florence, as one who often sat on the corner. She was on life support and her condition was deteriorating. I anointed her with oil and prayed, as the Scriptures teach – and left. That was on Sunday. Tuesday I arrived back at our corner – there she sat, healthy, hand out again. I knelt down and said, “Florence we need to talk.” Her face lit up, she had been informed that I had prayed for her. Later that day, one after another from this First Nations community came into the church for the very first time saying, “You went and prayed for Florence” or “You prayed for my sister.” Word had spread through the streets that I had been there. Her mother had told them what God had done.
Word had spread through the streets that I had been there.
From that day, I was welcomed into this community and have had the opportunity to lead many to faith in Jesus. We have done many of their funerals, often now with people expressing their faith in Christ. Only today, another spoke with me of his faith in Jesus. All of it, flowing from a door that God opened when He healed Florence. Florence herself came to faith about six months after her healing. She has now gone to be with Jesus. ¬
Bill and Donna Dyck have been leading Toronto Alliance Church in Toronto, Ontario for 24 years. They desire to rebuild the church for a future in the heart of the city.
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Lead Us to the Harvest Johnson Charles
or the last couple of years, the Lord has been bringing Winnipeg before us through various directions. “Grow, glow, and go” is the mission statement of Calgary Punjabi Church. Local outreach and missions are part of our DNA. As time went by, our hearts toward Winnipeg grew stronger. Our leadership team came together and sought after the Lord in prayer. The Lord affirmed our hearts to step out to reach the Punjabi community in Winnipeg. Isaiah 54:1-3 became the basis to enlarge, stretch forth, and strengthen. On August 27, 2017, our leadership commissioned a team of five under the leadership of Pastor Balwant Bedi on a journey filled with praise and prayer.
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This team of five began their work on the ground by connecting with local church leaders to discuss and plan their strategy to reach the Punjabi community in Winnipeg. By the Lord’s leading, the local leaders had sensed the same passion and desire to reach the Punjabi too. As the team met and presented this vision to Rick, the Senior Pastor of Maple Community Church, he opened his church building whole-heartedly for its meetings. Through God’s grace, many Punjabi- and Hindispeaking individuals and families came out to the first service. As this team from Calgary shared their testimonies, the Holy Spirit was on the move and several people gave their lives to the Lord that day.
The team saw many people having an interest in meeting every Sunday to worship together and this Punjabi Sunday service has continued since. In our commitment and ongoing relationship with this community, we continue to see the Lord at work there through the first-fruits of our community in Calgary. Kamal Arshi, one of the first few who came to know the Lord through Calgary Punjabi church, was recently laid off from work. She was not a bit worried but was rather glad to have time to visit Winnipeg on a short-term missions trip. She was overwhelmed with joy to meet the new families there. She shared the gospel with them and within the 10 days of her trip, 10 people accepted Jesus as their Saviour. The Spirit continues to lead us to where the harvest is and God is growing our church fast. ÂŤ
Johnson Charles came to Canada as a missionary from Pakistan pastoring at International Fellowship Church in 1997. He joined the C&MA in 2012 serving at Calgary Punjabi Church (Calgary, Alberta).
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New and Emerging Faith Communities in Canada Michelle Lorimer
he C&MA has formed New Ventures (NV) Teams in each province to facilitate a learning and growing environment for these emerging leaders and communities as they listen and respond to what Jesus has called them to be and become; the goal is to support and multiply new Christ communities across the country. New Ventures are exciting, experimental grounds, and no two look exactly alike! Here we’ve asked two New Venture leaders about how going deeper in Christ has directly affected their mission. Risen – Hamilton, ON Pastor John Doan, Lead Pastor of Risen I realized one thing that Jesus was saying to me, is that He will never call us to give up our relationship with Him for the sake of ministry. I saw that playing out in our NV. Early on this year, I realized that I needed a deeper love for the Word of God. I realized that if I’m not in the Word, I can’t ask our community to do the same thing. Consequently, my wife, Kristen, and I committed to being in God’s word together more. We then challenged our community to do the same. And God seems to be sowing the seed of hunger for the Bible in our people. The person who was most diligent in keeping up with our group scripture reading plan was our newest believer, the most recent person we baptized! I learned that God understands and knows our desires to move, but we need to wait for His Spirit to move in a mighty and powerful way. As we’ve been going through the book of Acts, I observed that when the Spirit moved, it was really clear and obvious that the work was not from man. I’ve been passionate about discipleship, but I can’t make it happen in our community by preaching and teaching alone. I felt God saying to me, “Wait for My Spirit to move. Don’t trust your own timing. I know your passions; wait and then jump on when I start to move...” Recently I’d been thinking, God, wouldn’t it be awesome if you drew us to fasting as a community. Meanwhile, our community is full of young professionals who have a universal passion for food. How could I, their new pastor, come into this tight 38 · Fall 2018
group of passionate foodies and herald the idea of fasting? I didn’t see how it could happen. So I waited on it and prayed. That same week, one of the young women from our community voiced that she felt like God was telling her to fast and pray. Starting that very week, a group of us began taking Fridays to fast as we pray for intimacy with God and direction for our ministry! I’ve learned that keeping a close walk with God has helped me do exactly what God is revealing I should do, regardless of external expectations. We’re a second generation church plant and I get a lot of pressure from our mother church to “get things going”. My personality is such that it’s really easy for me to yield to every expectation. I’ve come to realize that if I yielded to every pressure, I wouldn’t have been able to see all the other things God was doing in our midst that was different than what was expected or prescribed. So in an unconventional way, deepening my walk with Christ helped me keep my resolve as a pastor and leader, even amidst external pressures.
God seems to be sowing the seed of hunger for the Bible in our people.
East Gate Ministère Francophone – Ottawa, ON Pastor Jacques Lapointe, Lead Pastor of East Gate Ministère Francophone I have desired a deeper life with Christ for some time now, and I’ve been expressing to God that I desire to experience more of Him. As if in response to that prayer, I got a call from someone from our community at East Gate, someone I’ve known for a long time. He said that he was looking for a prayer partner, someone to be accountable with, and asked if I would consider being his regular prayer partner. I said yes and we started a partnership. We meet once a week and openly share our areas of struggles, without judgmental critique. Do you know that God has used this to help bring my walk with Him to a whole new level? It has helped me claim victories and allowed me to pray more, because I have someone I can speak to and share my struggles with. This partnership has made it easier for me to keep a devotional life, to spend more time resting in a corner without any noise, with a tranquility in my spirit, praying. And since we’ve been praying together, I’ve seen the Lord opening more doors, more opportunities to come alongside other people to share the gospel. There are new people visiting our church, making connections with French ministries. There is an opportunity to run Alpha in our neighboring Catholic parish. It’s less about my trying and working, and more about the Lord sending me people and me making the connection and ministering to who He has sent me. In the last two months we’ve connected with ten more families. Some are already starting to attend church, and recently one accepted Christ into his life. I recently officiated a wedding of a couple who have been living together unmarried for 12 years. I’ve been in ministry for 37 years as a pastor, and do you know this is my first regular prayer partner? We feel like David and Jonathan. © Michelle Lorimer is a musician, a songwriter, and a worship leader at Rexdale Alliance Church in Toronto, Ontario. During her time at New Ventures Canada, she enjoyed exploring God’s work in new Alliance churches across the country and broadcasting it through writing and social media. cmacan.org · 39
Multiplication as We G r o w D e e p e r i n Je s u s Boc Laurico
t the start of the year, we prayed and fasted to ask God for clear direction for our church – Saskatoon New Life Community Fellowship. God led us to the book of Acts. As we studied the book of Acts for several weeks, we are amazed at how the early church had grown in numbers and the impact they had not only to the Jewish community but to the Gentiles as well. Our leaders made observations and concluded that small groups were foundational to the early church. Furthermore, we discovered principles and mindsets which our small group ministry can draw from, as basis for the whys of what we are doing. These principles and mindsets were outlined in Acts 2, and we praise God that we are seeing these in our church today.
Our small group ministry was not all fun and fellowship though, as some of our members experienced challenges and never escaped from problems in the areas of health, work, family, and relationships over the past year. These situations gave our small group members opportunities to minister to their brothers and sisters who were hurting or grieving by providing comfort, prayers, and financial support. Fundraising campaigns for the needed funds ranged from bake 40 · Fall 2018
sales and steak nights, to sales of clothing and bags. Members of the small group made sacrifices to help those in need just as the early church. The small groups are now seeing a second generation of groups outside of Saskatoon, in Outlook, Rosetown, Rosthern, Hague, Dinsmore, and Cudworth. These groups are now being transitioned to become house churches. From time to time we get to see people being saved and brought to God’s kingdom. More than a hundred people were exposed to the gospel through special occasions like weddings, children dedications, and birthdays that turned out to be “bridge events” for evangelism. The Lord has favoured us by adding people to the church. Seeing new faces Sunday after Sunday in our church is truly a testament of how God is at work. He has been answering our prayers and we are confident He will perform in our midst what He had done in the early church. Growing deeper in Jesus indeed leads to multiplication. ª Pastor Boc Laurico is Lead Pastor of Saskatoon New Life Community Fellowship (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan). He has a Master of Arts in Missions from Koinonia Theological Seminary.
Po w e r Te a m Me m b e r s Still in the Game Wayne Kerr
ne of our Power Team members who is continuing to serve God locally and globally in retirement sent this to me recently, “Since the turn of the century three words have characterized retirement in North America: detachment, relaxation and leisure. Detachment depicts the release from responsibilities and obligations of career and work. Relaxation describes the manner and mode of living and leisure is activity that is free from toil and strain, fills the time and occupies the attention. Hence the main objective has been to change the retiree from a producer to a consumer in every aspect of life.” This definition of retirement however does not depict most of our Power Team members across Canada. Our members who have experienced years and decades of ministry are continuing to grow deeper in Jesus and are active participants to further our mission. There are those who are growing deeper and sharing that through their book writing. Some are interim pastors, some preach regularly, some serve the local church as ministering members. Some are travelling to other countries to preach and encourage international workers. Some are mentoring the younger generation
as they are preparing for the pastorate, international work or ordination. They are giving leadership to some para-church organizations or serving in another denomination. We recently received a farewell letter from Garth Hunt, who is the founder of World Serve and served in Vietnam with the C&MA. He, at age 89, is now passing the baton as his graduation to heaven is imminent due to advanced Parkinson’s disease. What an example he sets! No matter our age, we are all able to grow deeper in Jesus and further the mission which God has given to us. “Though outwardly we may be wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.” (2 Corinthians 4:16). For us, this growing deeper and furthering the mission may just be in a different place and at a different pace. We honor our Power Team members who are continuing to add much value to the Alliance family on mission. ¬ Wayne Kerr is Chairperson of the Power Team and editor of the Connector, a publication of Power Team. Wayne and his wife, Betty, celebrated their 50th anniversary of service with the C&MA this year. They continue to lead the seniors’ ministry at Rexdale Alliance Church (Toronto, Ontario).
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My Promise is No Longer the Same Because God Changed My Heart Myleen Bravo
was born in Chile and raised in the beautiful city of Montréal in the province of Québec, Canada. When I was younger, my parents didn’t have a car, so every Sunday we took the bus and we walked on Ste-Catherine Street, which is an area known for its strip clubs. It was during those walks that God started to share His heart for this neighbourhood with me. I still remember in the eyes of the women working in that area, were emptiness and hopelessness. And at 12-years-old, I promised God that I would dedicate my life to restoring the dignity of these women. Through the years, God transformed this promise into a lifetime engagement to serve Him. On my 20th birthday, I wrote in my journal that all I wanted was to serve Him and I wanted Him to use me for His purpose. The following year, I decided to quit my psychology program to study at École de théologie évangélique du Québec (ETEQ).
I began my studies obtaining a certificate in Pastoral Studies and during those two years, God used it to change my life. God used ETEQ to sharpen His purpose for me and equip me to serve Him better, and bringing me to my current study for a bachelor's degree in theology. I’m grateful for my parents that support me in my crazy journey of obedience and for teachers that encourage me and challenge me every semester. Today, as I remember the promise I made to God when I was 12, I realized how it was just the beginning of my journey with Him. My promise is no longer the same because God changed my heart in such way that all I want to do is dedicate my life to serve him regardless of whom or where. And just like when the Lord called Samuel, my answer is “Here I am.” (1 Samuel 3:4). «
Myleen Bravo was born in Valparaiso, Chile and raised in Montreal, Quebec. She obtained her bachelor degree in theology at ETEQ and will pursue her master's degree of arts this September 2018. She also serves as a youth leader at La Iglesia Hispana Bethel de la Alianza Cristiana y Misionera (Montreal, Quebec).
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Getting the Junk Out Rob Reimer
travel a lot. When I start a trip my suitcase is full of nice, neat, clean, folded clothes. By the time I am at the end of my trip everything is dirty, and I just throw it all in the suitcase and lug it back home. Before I venture out on my next trip, I have to empty the suitcase or there is no room in there for the clean clothes. Our soul is like a suitcase. Too often people are seeking God for more – more of his peace, more of his presence, more of his love, more of his joy – but there is no room in the suitcase of their soul because it is already full. Until we empty the suitcase of the dirty clothes of our souls, there is no room for all of the freedom and fullness of Christ.
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D.L. Moody once said, “I believe many a man is praying to God to fill him when he is already full with something else. Before we pray that God would fill us, I believe we ought to pray for Him to empty us. There must be an emptying before there can be a filling.”
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Years ago as a pastor, I realized that a lot of our people had a good theology of the Holy Spirit, but they were short on experience. I decided to start Holy Spirit Weekends where we would teach people about the things of the Spirit, and then we would create a lab
time where people could experience these things. We taught about hearing God’s voice, and then we gave the attendees an opportunity to listen to God for others. Many people heard God for the first time in their lives. We taught about how God heals the sick, and then we trained people to pray for the sick and people were healed. We taught about the fullness of the Spirit, and then we prayed for people to be filled. I began to notice that many times people were encountering the Holy Spirit, but there was no life change. I asked God “Why?” I sensed the Lord say to me, “I can come upon them, but I cannot expand within them because they are already full.” I started helping people empty themselves of the things in the suitcase of their soul, so they could be filled with the fullness of God. There are certain inviolable principles of the soul, and if we violate them, there are consequences that keep us from the fullness of God. For example, often our suitcase is filled with secrets. Where there are secrets, there is shame. Shame is like Teflon to the soul; nothing sticks to Teflon. We know about the love of God, but we don’t experience the revelation of God’s
love until we empty the suitcase of secrets and shame. Other times the suitcase is filled with bitterness. We cannot experience the fullness of God when we are filled with bitterness. We must bless those who curse us and forgive those who sin against us. This not only has implication for the quality of our lives, but also for the effectiveness of our mission. First, we must be emptied in order to be filled with the Spirit. And we will never be effective on mission without the filling of the Spirit. The baptism of the Spirit is not primarily given so we can feel good; it is given so we can be effective on mission. Second, I think Soul Care is a gateway to evangelism in this generation. More people are going to come to Christ today because they know they are broken in need of a Healer, than because they know they are sinners in need of a Saviour. Churches that learn how to heal people’s souls in the power of the Spirit will have two results, they will go deeper in Jesus and further on mission! © Rob Reimer is a Professor at Alliance Theological Seminary in Nyack, New York. He is the author of Soul Care, River Dwellers, Deep Faith, and Pathways to the King.
Your French School of Theology, ETEQ, is offering Theology courses in English in Montreal
Might God be calling you to prepare to learn and grow in a new context? Come, join us from far and near! This is your chance to advance your understanding of an important mission field immersed in a French culture, yet studying in English. Quebec is still the most unreached region for Christ in the Americas. Jesus is calling - are you ready to answer? Join us in Fall 2018 for up to 30 university credits, fully transferrable to all accredited universities.
In parternship with
Not My Convincing, But His Tim and Rox*
e have lived in North Africa for the past six years reaching out to the least-reached people who we refer to as our cousins. One of my good friends, Moe, loves to watch English movies with Arabic subtitles. One afternoon, as I walked into his shop, he asked me to sit down and watch this movie with him. To my surprise, he was watching The Shack. All throughout the movie, we paused and talked about Jesus and God’s love for us. There were several times when I felt Moe would never understand nor accept the truth that I was sharing. However, the Holy Spirit brought back to my memory what I had been discovering in the Word that very morning. I had been reading about the Mount of Transfiguration. I had said to the Father, “If I was to relate this story to the average person, they would never believe it to be true.” The Spirit of God then spoke, “But Matthew believed the story and he had only heard what they told him. It is not up to you to convince people of the truth. Your responsibility
is to share the truth and let the Holy Spirit do the convincing, no matter how unreasonable the truth may sound. There will be those who will be skeptical about what you share, but like Matthew, there will also be those who will listen and be inspired.” At one point in the movie, we paused to talk about the trinity. At another point, we paused to talk about how the Father sent His Son, Jesus, to take the punishment for our wrongdoings so that we can be set free from the fear of hell, which is a huge concern for our cousins. To my amazement, after talking about these profound theological truths, I asked him, “Do you understand what I am saying?” As Moe nodded in agreement and by the expression on his face, I could tell that the Spirit of God had been speaking to him. I am encouraged by Isaiah 55:8, “I don’t think the way you think. The way you work isn’t the way I work. God’s decree.” ª
*Tim and Rox’s full names are withheld for security reasons. They have been international workers in a creative-access-country in North Africa since 2012. They have been married since 1978 and have two children and two granddaughters. Learn more at cmacan.org/trb
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Th e Gift of Tr uth Lisa Miriam Rohrick
t the invitation of a friend, Pilgrim became a regular and keen attendee of a Bible storying group in Niger, West Africa. He’d been attending for several weeks when he asked me one day to pray for his wife, Esther, who was pregnant. He went on to tell me that he’d been married before. Six times his wife carried a baby to term, and six times the baby was either born dead or died shortly after birth. The sixth pregnancy, unfortunately, claimed his wife’s life as well. Pilgrim, later on, remarried to his current wife and had a baby boy who died two months later. Now Esther was pregnant again. “Every time you mention Abraham,” Pilgrim told me, “I wonder if I, too, will have to wait until I’m 100 before I will be a father! Please pray for us.” I prayed with him for their unborn child. I continued to pray, and Pilgrim continued to listen to stories from God’s word. When we arrived in the New Testament, he immediately saw that Jesus was the promised Saviour. One day he announced with a grin, “I’m a newcomer
in this town, but you don’t have to be here long to see that it’s a beautiful place!” You’re not a newcomer here, I thought. You were born here! Then I realized he was not talking about his village, but was referring to the Kingdom of God. Pilgrim continued to soak up stories from God’s word and began sharing them with others. During this time, Pilgrim also led his friend to faith in Christ. One morning, there was a knock on my door. Pilgrim excitedly tripping over his words told me of a healthy baby girl born that previous afternoon. “God answered our prayers!” he declared. He and Esther honoured me by giving their baby my name. On February 28, 2018, Pilgrim and his friend were both baptized. “Thank you for coming to Niger,” they told me. “You have brought us the gift of truth.” ¬ Lisa Rohrick has been an international worker in Africa since 1999. She works with the Fulani people in Niger. Learn more at cmacan.org/lr
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We S h a r e Christ. It's W h a t We D o . Ace Cheung “
e share our food. It’s what we do. We can’t let them go hungry.” The men of the cooperative explained why they had so many loans. The elderly, the homeless, and orphans come under their care. As long as there’s room, Tuaregs welcome family. They themselves were forced into urbanization as livestock dwindled, afflicted by everything from disease and desertification to flash floods that decimated herds at a time. It’s difficult not to admire their courage and their gentle tenacious love for family members. We have worked with the cooperative since its formation five years ago. The interest-free loans, cereal banks, hut improvement, and sheep programs, they say, have given them hope. Slowly, some have become more open and perhaps even eager to receive God’s Word when we share it.
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Why do we work in Niger? Because though we love our own family members dearly – and God knows just how dearly – our love is not simply for those who are near or close. Because only 200 of the 2.1 million Tuaregs in Niger1 follow Christ – like having 400 believers in all of Alberta. Because as the Alliance, we know that “Jesus is the hope of the world, and thus, he needs to be declared and demonstrated in all parts of the world”.2 In a posture of hunger and humility, we pray for Holy Spirit power each day to share Jesus in his fullness as we are called to do. We will take the risk to go and to bless because we cannot help but try to give “every human being in the present generation a chance for salvation.”3 We ask for the Spirit. We share Christ. It’s what we do. “That everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.” (John 3:15). « 1
The World Factbook 2018. Washington, DC: Central Intelligence Agency, 2018.
Pyles, Franklin & Beach, Lee. (2016). The Whole Gospel for the Whole World: Experiencing the Fourfold Gospel Today. Pickwick Publications, p. 106. 2
Simpson, A.B. (1925). Missionary Messages. Christian Alliance Publishing Company.
Ace Cheung is a family physician, and has been serving with his wife, Cecilia, as international workers in Niger since 2006. Learn more at cmacan.org/acc
Come, Holy Spirit, Come: L e a n i n g i n t o t h e M i n i s t r y o f t h e T h i r d P e r s o n o f t h e H o l y Tr i n i t y Gordon T. Smith
t is not an overstatement to say that everything that we are called to as Christians and as the church is effected in our lives through the gracious ministry of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit and Union with Christ First, of course, we long to be found “in Christ” – abiding in him as he abides in us (John 15:4). The yearning of our hearts is that Christ would be formed in us – Christ in you the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27). We do not want to merely talk about Jesus, and we are not only interested in a good theology of Christ Jesus. Yes, theology matters; and yes, of course, it is essential that we foster good conversations about what it means to say, as we do in the Alliance, that Jesus only is our message.
What must be stressed, though, is that this is the work of the Spirit in our lives. Meaning two things. First, that if we want to be found in Christ, we need to learn how to attend to the Spirit – or, in the language at the end of Galatians, we learn to live by the Spirit (5:16), be led by the Spirit (5:18), bear the fruit of the Spirit (5:22), and sowing the seed in the Spirit (6:8). The life of Christ is mediated to us by the Spirit.
But each of these is derivative of something else: being found "in Christ."
And second, that knowing the grace of the Holy Spirit is not the special prevue of more committed or eager Christians – as though some Christians are just “Jesus Christians” and then a second order of believers are “Spirit Christians”. No, the Spirit has one agenda for the church, that we would be
But, what we long for is that our identity would be one of intimate union with Christ – baptized into his death and resurrection (Romans 6:4). It is this dynamic that captures our imaginations, such that we pray: bring us, Lord, into deeper fellowship with you. And it is important to stress that this is the heart of sanctification – this being found “in Christ”. Yes, morality matters; and yes, it is so very important that we mature in our understanding and in our behaviour, in the quality of our relationships and in our generosity and patience in sermon. All good! But each of these is derivative of something else: being found “in Christ”. Thus the goal and focus of the Christian life is all about Jesus – that is, in the words of Ephesians 4, that we would grow up into him who is our living head.
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brought to Christ and, further, that we would mature in Christ. Christian spirituality is then, nothing other than the intentional response to the initiative of the Spirit, with a clear focus and vision to be found in Christ, abiding in him as he abides in us. The Holy Spirit and the Mission of God As followers of Christ, we are called to witness to the kingdom of God in word and deed. This is what it means to be a church on mission, which our vision and longing is that we could point to the reign of Christ. Mission is, without a doubt, about reaching those who do not know Christ and establishing congregations where those who come to Christ can find Christian fellowship and join others in Christian worship and, in community, be discipled into mature Christ followers. But it is also much more, we need to think in terms of the kingdom – the reign of Christ. And this means that everyone is on mission, those called to establish new church communities in the farthest outpost and those called into business, education, or arts in the heart of Toronto, Vancouver, or Calgary. We are all on mission. On mission to witness, in word and deed, to the kingdom.
Therefore, it is imperative that we get past any idea that we are going to do “great things for God”, that we are going to be heroes and saviours. Rather, all we are going to do is precisely – no more and no less – what the Spirit leads us to do. Where we act, where we speak, what we say, and what we do will all be the fruit of the Spirit’s prompting and guidance. We do not live self-constructed lives and mission is not our construction. Rather, the whole of our lives, including our participation in the mission of God, is a response to the Spirit. The Apostle Paul insisted that some plant and some water but eventually, it is the Lord that gives the increase (1 Corinthians 3:6-7). This is a reminder that we are not called to do it all. We can therefore in humility accept with alacrity the work to which we are called, and equally humble to trust God with what he is not calling us to do. Mission ultimately belongs to God, not to us. Finally, as the Scriptures emphasize, what we say and what we do as our contribution to the mission of God, is typically beyond us. We are in over our heads and yet desire the wisdom for an apt word, a courageous word, and to have the emotional, intellectual, and physical capacity to do what we are being called to do. This will mean that we learn to depend on the grace of God and the empowerment of the Spirit. And we can and must ask for this grace, for the Spirit to equip us for the very work to which the Spirit is calling us. So, whether it is our union with Christ or our participation in the mission of God, we come back to the same prayer again and again, Come, Holy Spirit, Come. It is our daily prayer as those who long to be found in Christ and who long to witness, in word and deed, the reign of Christ. ©
The whole of our lives, including our participation in the mission of God, is a response to the Spirit.
The kingdom comes not so much on Sunday morning as Monday morning. Thus vibrant and effective congregations are those where the gospel is preached, but more, where women and men are equipped for service Monday through Friday, in the marketplace or as homemakers. We preach for Monday morning.
And yet, all of this is merely a human endeavour, at best, and perhaps nothing more than grasping and struggling to make a difference – even a difference for good – if we do not learn to do mission in the Spirit. The mission of God, bringing glory to God and establishing the reign of Christ is not, ultimately our work. We are but participants, in the grace of the Spirit, with what God is doing. 50 · Fall 2018
Gordon T. Smith is the President of Ambrose University where he also serves as Professor of Systematic and Spiritual Theology. He is the author of a number of books, including Evangelical, Sacramental and Pentecostal: Why the Church Needs to be All Three.
Mission ultimately belongs to God, not to us.
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On a Journey to Go Melanie Haensel
ur journey towards global missions began in April 2017. At that time, my husband, Keith, and I both felt that God was asking us to go deeper in our relationships with Him. Through a series of confirming circumstances, we decided to attend a Holy Spirit Encounter weekend held at Westgate Alliance Church in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. That weekend began a journey of faith that both challenged us in what we had perceived as the Holy Spirit's role in our lives, and also encouraged us to be more intentional in our pursuit of Him. Over the next few months, we were amazed to see His faithfulness to us in new and exciting ways. We even took part in another Holy Spirit Encounter weekend at our home church in Melfort, Saskatchewan. We were blessed to see the Holy Spirit speaking into the lives of our brothers and sisters. Our faith continued to grow but we did not realize at the time that God had something more in mind. In January 2018, an international worker who had been serving in Guinea came and spoke at our church. During his presentation, we both felt a strong nudge from God. After the service ended, Keith turned to me and said we should go and meet with the international
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worker, it was as if I already knew he was going to suggest it and it didn't surprise me. God had planted a seed in both of our hearts for missions, and as we both recognized His voice, we could only step out in obedience and faith. We continue to take the small steps toward what God has for us. We've also begun to have conversations with our three kids about “becoming international workers”. While they are still a bit too young to fully understand what that means, it's exciting to begin this journey together as a family. There are still many unknowns, but we trust in His plan and His timing and are thankful for how He has led us this far. He will not abandon us! He goes before us and His timing is always perfect. ª Melanie and Keith have been married since 2006 and have three children, Connor, Griffin, and Arwyn. They are currently living in Melfort, Saskatchewan.
Global Semester Global Semester is an intentional 8-week cohort-based internship for people exploring God’s call to serve Him missionally. Each Global Semester will be hosted in different regions of the world with the first one being launched in June 2019 in Senegal. For details and to apply:
Envision Summit 2019 is going “allCanadian!” Hosted in Montreal, QC, Summit is designed for the young influencer who desires to contribute to the Kingdom of God in a variety of ways. Participants can look forward to developing both skill and soul for the future of missions. Dates: April 29–May 3, 2019
For details and to apply:
An Urban Church Meets a Rural Bedroom Community Raja Stone
n the early part of the 20th century, one of the greatest minds humanity would ever know was wrestling with a problem. Albert Einstein was trying to determine how to reconcile two of the greatest forces in the universe, gravity and electromagnetism. This pursuit was called the “Unified Field Theory” or the “Theory of Everything”. Einstein believed that if he could formulate a theory that could harness both these forces he would unlock the secrets of the universe. Spoiler alert, he never did it. This seems like an odd way to start an article that is supposed to be about going deeper in Jesus. Let me
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unpack this a little. In the early part of 2017, Uptown Community Church, a church plant less than three years old (we were just getting out of our diapers, metaphorically speaking) would embark upon an adventure. Our church became a test subject for the “Fresh Start” program. Fresh start is an endeavour that takes an existing church and partners it with a declining church. The question is, how do you take two forces (see I told you I’d tie it in) and harness them. Our church partnered with a rural church called Wellesley Alliance Church (WAC). WAC was an older congregation that was asking questions about the
future. Uptown Community Church tended to skew a little younger with 60% of our congregation under 30 years of age. How do you combine two different cultures and histories to discover a deeper mission in Christ? Much like Einstein, we are still working through it but the potential is exciting. Part of the answer lies in the writings of Paul. Paul writing to the church in Corinth gives them a new vision of the future. He has just presented to them that they are “ministers of reconciliation”. Which is a beautiful word; to make two things one. Paul then sums it up with this statement, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” (2 Corinthians 5:17). New creation, something brand new. Not a hybrid but something only the Holy Spirit can knit together.
new. Not two separate things brought together but a whole new paradigm grounded in Jesus. Taking two cultures, two communities and discovering what they could both look like partnered together on mission in our communities. Both churches see truth in each other’s story. We aren’t competing to see which narrative is superior but instead, submitting to the Lord in what is to come. An urban church together with a rural bedroom community. Both passionate to reach their communities and both excited by what it can be. ¬ Raja Stone is the Lead Pastor of Uptown Community Church in Waterloo, Ontario. He is married to his best friend, Sarah, and together they have three beautiful girls. He loves that the first thing we learn about God is that He is creative, and that God’s creation reflects this in diversity and nature’s beauty.
As we are striving to foster new life and growth in Wellesley, we are holding to the vision for something
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Deepening in Us God's Heart for the World in Mexico Ray Perry
ollowing Jesus is a journey and an adventure! It's a journey as we deepen our relationship with Him and an adventure because we never know where God will lead us.
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Near the end of 2015, Cindy and I were asked to consider being the Envision Site Coordinators for Mexico City. This began a six-month journey of praying and seeking God's leading. Saying yes meant leaving full-time youth ministry after more than 22 years, leaving a vibrant church we loved, and leaving behind our young adult children. At the end of six months, God gave us a real sense that He was leading us to do this and had been preparing us for this next adventure. On January 1, 2017, we transitioned from pastoral ministry to being international workers! It has definitely been an adventure. It has brought a lot of change, new rhythms of life, learning a new language, and the occasional earthquake. These were the harder moments. However, meeting new people, ministering with fellow international workers and Mexicans, being a gospel presence, and journeying with short-term teams, interns and apprentices brings about much joy! As Alliance churches in Canada partner with international workers and the national ministries in Mexico, we are able to journey and strengthen the ministries here while deepening God's heart for the world in those that come. We have seen people make relationships a priority, both within their team and with Mexican people. We have seen individuals listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit, embrace leaving their comfort zone in obedience to Jesus, and choose to return home with a different focus. This has been an impact on both local and global engagement! It's a privilege to disciple people this way and we thank you to all who have already come and allowed us to journey with you. For the rest of you, we'd love to have you engage with one of our Envision sites as you go deeper in your journey. ÂŤ Ray Perry was a youth and missions pastor in Canada for over 22 years. He is married to Cindy and together they have three kids and a son-in-law. They are now international workers serving as site coordinators for Envision Canada in Mexico City. Learn more at cmacan.org/rcp
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Catching the Next Generation Jose and Joscelyn*
n the last afternoon of this year’s Envision Summit in Vancouver, Jocelyn and I had the opportunity to hang out with some of the participants. As we walked to get some bubble tea, everyone was abuzz with both light-hearted and deep-delving discussions about what God taught them during the Summit. Some talked about soul care in being reconciled in their broken relationships. Some talked about global missions in discerning next steps along their journey. Some talked about local missions and wanting to reach their First Nations neighbours. This group that consisted of young millennials from Vancouver, North Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal, and even Texas, is an encouraging picture of a new generation embodying what it means to spur one another towards love and good deeds based on their shared experience and shared terminology.
For our family, this past year has been a year of spurring on and being spurred on by others. Throughout the experience of sickness and God’s gracious healing, we have felt the authentic love of the Alliance family in supporting and encouraging us which led us to ask God how we can next serve to support and encourage others. God answered with an idea. We shared this idea with our leaders who spurred us on to develop this further. The result is Global Semester, an eight-week internship for young adults through an intentional learning program and a primary ministry of prayer. Over the next two years, we will be leading cohorts to one field in each of the regions. We hope to cultivate an environment in which the next generation of leaders can share life together, learn from each other, and spur one another to become more Christ-centred, Spirit-empowered, and mission-focused. ©
*Jose and Joscelyn’s full names are withheld for security reasons. They are international workers serving in West Africa. They are currently on home assignment with their daughter in Richmond, British Columbia, and developing the Global Semester Program for Envision Canada. Learn more at envisioncanada.org/GS
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Boston Pizza Decides to “Choose Change” Arlene Stinson
efend Dignity, through the Choose Change campaign, had a big win this spring with Boston Pizza (BP). Vicki Waschowski, a senior executive of BP, agreed that pornography is harmful, and is easy to stumble onto through unfiltered Wi-Fi. In response to a Choose Change request, she indicated that BP would be implementing filtering protection in all of their locations. As well, BP shared Choose Change on their social media and directly with their employees. Defend Dignity believes that pornography fuels the demand for paid sex and is harmful, especially to kids. Research tells us that many kids are first exposed to pornography on a smart phone, often accidentally. The Choose Change campaign was designed to give you a way to use your influence to challenge the harms of pornography.
We have started the dialogue at ChooseChangeCanada.org, where you can connect with the executives and CEOs of organizations who are, perhaps unknowingly, facilitating ease of access to these images. With a few clicks you can connect to these key players, encouraging them to change their policies and practices. People like you were a part of making this BP victory happen. Would you help us get more wins by sending tweets and emails to the other Canadian organizations listed and end sexual exploitation in Canada together in Jesus’ name? PS – Facebook sharing and tweets tagging organizations grab their attention. ª Arlene Stinson is the Coordinator of Research and Strategic Development for Defend Dignity, a ministry of the C&MA which exists to end sexual exploitation in Canada. For more information, visit choosechangecanada.org
YOUR participation is vital!
REDUCE THE EASE OF ACCESS TO PORNOGRAPHIC IMAGES It's as easy a few clicks!
Head over to choosechangecanada.org and advocate for businesses to change their practices.
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