Have We Forgotten the Value of Testimony Time?
Lament: Getting Beyond “Thoughts and Prayers”
Palm Sunday: Following in the Footsteps of Jesus
THE VOICE OF THE ARMY
Heart to Heart Life-saving transplant a miracle for Ward family
The Whole World Mobilizing International Youth and Children's Weekend
23-25 March 2018
Contact your DYS for more information
Follow Canada Bermuda Youth on Facebook! (for these and more shiny resources)
Salvationist March 2018 • Volume 13, Number 3
Silent No More: #MeToo Is Also a Church Problem
Not Called? Think Again, Says New Campaign
Joseph’s Story Exposes the Perils of Power
THE VOICE OF THE ARMY
Ke e p Connected
Salvationist February 2018
• For Brian and Natalia DeBoer, soldiership in The Salvation Army means complete surrender. • Music ministry has taught Paul Vos to let God set the tempo.
Major Jennifer Hale talks about the territory’s new campaign that encourages soldiers to become candidates.
The story of Joseph reveals the deathly dilemma of leadership.
Features 8 Heart to Heart
30 Salvation Stories
Their newborn daughter faced a life-threatening illness, but Sarah and AJ Ward knew God was with them. by Kristin Ostensen
24 Grace Notes The Gift of Gratefulness by Lieutenant Erin Metcalf
Life on Crews Control Addiction to pornography almost ruined actor Terry Crews’ life.
Two Islands, Two Hearts They were separated by half a world, but love found a way.
Just for Kids February 2018
This Month: • Meet children at Salvation Army schools in Kenya. • Show others you care on Valentine’s Day. • Learn how to be a “fisher of people.” • Raise money for Partners in Mission. • Plus stories, puzzles, colouring, jokes and more!
27 People & Places
Testify! by Colonel Lee Graves
Faith & Friends February 2018
This month on salvationist.ca, Lieutenant Anne Holden shares her struggle with something we don’t often talk about—food.
Covenantal Living by Ken Ramstead
16 Chief Priorities
Ke e p Connected
Answering the Call
17 Calling the Courageous
Desperate Times, Desperate Prayers by Geoff Moulton
• This year, give the gift of thrifty love for Valentine’s Day.
The Perils of Power
Nourishing Families by Giselle Randall
Love at Any Age
MARRY ME? P.13
15 Fresh Ideas
LITE STUFF P.26
The Salvation Army supports health, education and economic development in one of the most culturally diverse places in the world.
From the Pampas to the Prairies by Saulo Neves de Oliveira
Double the Recipes
I N S P I R AT I O N F O R L I V I N G
• When Take lost everything, The Salvation Army gave him hope.
25 Cross Culture
DOGGONE IT! P.5
THE COUPLE WERE SEPARATED BY HALF A WORLD, BUT LOVE FOUND A WAY P.16
From Bermuda to Fiji
Heart for Kenya
Partners in Mission appeal highlights health, education and economic development
Pooch on the Loose
11 What Jesus Sees How Palm Sunday points us to “the things that make for peace.” by Major Ray Harris
12 Seize the (Purple) Day Salvationist Tom Nesbitt doesn’t let epilepsy stop him from doing what God has called him to do. by Kristin Ostensen
14 Life of the Party Others—Trade for Hope brings women in Canada and around the world together. by Captain Laura Van Schaick
Want to highlight Army ministry at your worship meetings? Take advantage of our “Keep Connected” promotional materials. They include PowerPoint slides for on-screen announcements and bulletin inserts that summarize all the great articles in Salvationist, Faith & Friends, Foi & Vie (French version of Faith & Friends) and Just for Kids. Download the materials at salvationist.ca/editorial/ promotional-material or write to ada_leung@can. salvationarmy.org. Cover photo: Sarah Williams
Read and share it! Where’s My Sandwich?
STICKER SHOCK P.25
Q&A With Kim Phuc
“NAPALM GIRL” P.10
Busking for a Cause
HELPING THE ARMY P.14
Faith&Friends I N S P I R AT I O N F O R L I V I N G
18 Prayers of Protest
Recovering the tradition of lament. by Aaron White
20 Disturbing My Present It took a trip to Kenya to make me realize that denying myself elevates others. by Brianne Zelinsky
22 Daring to Lead Resolving the deathly dilemma of leadership. by Donald E. Burke
Dancing With the Star HOW GYMNAST AND DANCE-SHOW FINALIST LAURIE HERNANDEZ STAYS GROUNDED. P.16
2018-01-22 4:19 PM
Salvationist March 2018 3
Desperate Times, Desperate Prayers
ast August, a man went to Disney World looking for a kidney—and found it! Robert Leibowitz, 60, of Brooklyn, New York, suffered from chronic kidney disease. When his kidneys started failing—functioning at just five per cent—and the transplant waiting list was seven years, he took matters into his own hands. He booked a trip to Disney and wore a T-shirt the entire week that read: “In Need of Kidney. O Positive.” And he added his cellphone number. What happened next was remarkable. Someone snapped a photo and put it on Facebook. By the end of the week, it was shared 90,000 times. Hundreds of phone calls came in from people wanting to help. Finding a perfect match for a kidney is tricky. Along with blood type, doctors also have to assess whether the enzymes and tissue are compatible. Four people flew to New York for testing, but only one, Richie Sully, was a match. When he first spotted the Facebook post, Sully left a message on Leibowitz’s voicemail: “Hi, my name is Richie. I saw your post and I’m O positive. I have an extra kidney and you are more than welcome to it.” Later, he told CNN, “I saw this as a desperate act. I couldn’t think of a reason not to call the guy. It just seemed like this is something you’re supposed to do.” The
is a monthly publication of The Salvation Army Canada and Bermuda Territory André Cox General Commissioner Susan McMillan Territorial Commander Lt-Colonel Jim Champ Secretary for Communications Geoff Moulton Editor-in-Chief and Literary Secretary Giselle Randall Features Editor (416-467-3185) Pamela Richardson News Editor, Copy Editor and Production Co-ordinator (416-422-6112) Kristin Ostensen Associate Editor and Staff Writer 4 March 2018 Salvationist
men hope that their inspirational story brings awareness to the importance of organ donation. Health is such a fragile thing. We often take it for granted, until something terrible turns our world upside down. Last year, our three most-read online stories were all health-related. We can empathize because many of us have suffered from ill health, or know someone close to us who has. In this issue of Salvationist, you’ll meet Sarah and AJ Ward, parents who faced their worst nightmare when their newborn daughter, Laura, needed a heart transplant (page 8). Read about their difficult journey, their steadfast faith and the way that Salvationists rallied around in their time of need. Thankfully, Laura’s story has a goodnews ending. But what about those times when things do not turn out as we had hoped? Where is God then? Aaron White notes that Christians have largely forgotten how to lament (page 18). He encourages a biblical approach to help us “develop the courage to avoid denying, repressing or shoving our pain away…. God is not intimidated by our honesty and vulnerability.” Elsewhere, professor Donald Burke examines painful leadership
Timothy Cheng Senior Graphic Designer Brandon Laird Design and Media Specialist Ada Leung Circulation Co-ordinator Ken Ramstead Contributor Agreement No. 40064794, ISSN 1718-5769. Member, The Canadian Church Press. All Scripture references from the Holy Bible, New International Version (NIV) © 2011. All articles are copyright The Salvation Army Canada and Bermuda Territory and can be reprinted only with written permission.
lessons in the story of Joseph (page 22). After his exile to Egypt, Joseph told his brothers, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good.” God doesn’t cause suffering, but he can bring hope out of the darkest situation. Desperate times call for desperate prayers. Call out to him—in times of joy and of pain—for he is our Rock and Redeemer. GEOFF MOULTON EDITOR-IN-CHIEF
Annual: Canada $30 (includes GST/ HST); U.S. $36; foreign $41. Available from: The Salvation Army, 2 Overlea Blvd, Toronto ON M4H 1P4. Phone: 416-422-6119; fax: 416-422-6120; email: email@example.com.
Inquire by email for rates at firstname.lastname@example.org.
News, Events and Submissions Editorial lead time is seven weeks prior to an issue’s publication date. No responsibility is assumed to publish, preserve or return unsolicited material. Write to email@example.com or Salvationist, 2 Overlea Blvd, Toronto ON M4H 1P4.
The Salvation Army exists to share the love of Jesus Christ, meet human needs and be a transforming influence in the communities of our world. Salvationist informs readers about the mission and ministry of The Salvation Army in Canada and Bermuda. salvationist.ca facebook.com/salvationistmagazine twitter.com/salvationist youtube.com/salvationistmagazine instagram.com/salvationistmagazine
Queen’s Park Reception Focuses on Violence Against Women
n honour of the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women in Canada, The Salvation Army hosted a reception at the Legislative Assembly of Ontario in
December, focusing on our services for women across the country. The annual day of remembrance takes place on December 6, marking the anniversary of the 1989 mass shooting at l’École
Salvation Army representatives and Ontario government officials discuss the Army’s efforts to combat violence against women. From left, Glenn van Gulik, area director for public relations and development, Ont. CE Div; Mjr Everett Barrow, DC, Ont. GL Div; MPP Soo Wong, ScarboroughAgincourt; MPP Mike Colle, Eglinton-Lawrence; MPP Laurie Scott, Haliburton-Kawartha LakesBrock; Jeff Robertson, area director for public relations and development, Ont. CE Div; Jeff Barrett, DSBA, Ont. CE Div; and Mjr John Murray, territorial public relations and development secretary
Polytechnique in Montreal, which claimed the lives of 14 young women. The reception highlighted many of The Salvation Army’s programs and services that provide compassionate and unconditional support to women, including the Evangeline Residence, the second-largest women’s shelter in Toronto. Providing nutritious meals, supportive counselling and medical assistance, the residence is a safe space that empowers women. The reception also highlighted the Army’s Florence Booth House, also in Toronto, a 60-bed emergency shelter that offers a wide range of services such as life skills programs and addictions counselling. As the reception hall filled, Salvation Army representatives met with members of provincial parliament to discuss the daily realities of violence toward women in Canadian society. The reception provided an opportunity to remember all the women who have been affected by discrimination and violence, and share how the Army is working to combat such violence.
Collingwood Community Church Donates Bikes to Sierra Leone
he Salvation Army in Sierra Leone is better equipped to meet local needs, thanks to a donation from Collingwood Community Church, Ont. With the corps already supporting local and divisional ministries, Collingwood’s mission board decided to look at international opportunities to further the work of the Army, above and beyond their Partners in Mission giving. As Major Neil Evenden, corps officer, explains, the idea to purchase motorbikes for the Army in Sierra Leone came from Lt-Colonel Sandra Rice, divisional commander, Ontario Central-East Division, who had recently visited the country. “We wanted our donation to provide a tool—something that would enhance ministry significantly—that they would not normally be able to afford,” Major Evenden says. “When we discussed the motorbikes with Lt-Colonel Rice, we said, ‘That is exactly what we’re looking for.’ ” After going through the appropriate channels, five motorbikes were delivered to the headquarters of the Liberia Command, which oversees the work of the Army in Sierra Leone, in September. “We were so excited when we saw the pictures of the motorcycles after they were delivered,” Major Evenden says.
Salvation Army officers at the headquarters of the Liberia Cmd receive motorbikes donated by Collingwood CC
Salvationist March 2018 5
Kettles Raise $23.1 Million
Photo: John Pettifer
he Salvation Army’s Christmas kettle campaign raised $23.1 million across Canada, which is the second-highest total ever raised by the Army during the holiday season. These funds will help the Army feed, clothe, shelter and empower vulnerable people in 400 Canadian communities. “We’re grateful to our generous donors, dedicated volunteers and supportive corporate partners for making this campaign a success,” says Major John Murray, territorial public relations
and development secretary. “We rely heavily on our Christmas kettle campaign to fund our community and social service programs, so this outpouring of support is greatly appreciated.” The annual kettle campaign enables local Salvation Army units to help individuals and families with the basic necessities of life. Contributions also allow the Army to continue operating programs such as substance abuse recovery, housing supports, and job and skills training. “For more than 130 years, The Salvation Army has provided hope and dignity to people in need,” says Major Murray. “Thanks to the public’s generosity, the Army can continue its vital work in communities across the country.” Santa Claus and RCMP Corporal Laurie Rocks help kettle volunteer Thomas Hamilton raise funds for The Salvation Army in Penticton, B.C.
Funding for Shelter in Maple Ridge
eople who are struggling with housing affordability and homelessness in Maple Ridge, B.C., will soon have access to new supportive housing. The provincial government has announced it will invest $3.6 million in a new property for a building project that will include approximately 40 new supportive housing units and relocation of up to 40 shelter beds. The Salvation Army’s Ridge Meadows Ministries will operate the new project and move its existing shelter to the new building to be constructed on the site. “Supportive housing and shelters are an important intervention that saves lives and assists people to access the resources they need to achieve housing stability,” says Darrell Pilgrim, executive director, Ridge Meadows Ministries. “We’re excited about this initiative and privileged to be able to work with the provincial government.”
6 March 2018 Salvationist
Thrift Stores Boost Kettle Campaign
he Salvation Army’s National Recycling Operations (NRO) showed strong support for the Christmas kettle campaign this season, raising nearly $300,000. This recordbreaking amount represented a 29 per cent increase over the amount raised in 2016. Over seven weeks in November and December, 108 Salvation Army thrift stores collected $290,691. “These results reflect the unbelievable kindness of our generous guests and staff who strongly believe in the work being done by The Salvation Army in the fight against poverty,” says Michele Walker, NRO director of retail operations. Christmas kettles is one of several GoodWorks@Work campaigns that NRO leads throughout the year to provide support to various Salvation Army programs.
Salvationist’s Radio Show Going Strong
passion that turned into a hobby is now a ministry for Salvationist Tom Quick, who attends Hespeler Community Church in Cambridge, Ont. Quick did his first Salvation Army broadcast on Christmas Eve in 1999 and in 2018 he commenced his 18th year presenting Let There Be Praise. These broadcasts go out twice a month from Faith FM (FM 93.7) in Kitchener, Ont., and are recorded live by Pieter Van Horssen in Amsterdam. They are then uploaded to three websites so that listeners outside Kitchener can enjoy the show. Over the past 17 years, Let There Be Praise has been supported by sponsors from around the world. Broadcasts have included programs in memory of loved ones, corps anniversaries and Salvation Army music ensembles. The upcoming March 21 broadcast, sponsored by territorial headquarters, will feature Commissioner Susan McMillan, territorial commander, and Colonel Lee
Graves, chief secretary. For more information about Let There Be Praise, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tom Quick records an episode of Let There Be Praise with Mjr Violet Barrow, DDWM, Ont. GL Div
New Shelter Provides Dignity to Men in Toronto
he Salvation Army’s New Hope Leslieville Shelter officially opened its doors in January. Located on the east side of Toronto, this new facility will provide services for up to 60 men, offering emergency shelter, meals, supportive counselling, housing placement, follow-up services, employment referrals and rehabilitation support for men experiencing homelessness. New Hope Leslieville replaces the Army’s Hope Shelter, which closed its doors in 2015. “Our goal is to help get residents to a warm and safe place, ensuring that they are getting the proper care they need,” says Phil Clarke, assistant director at New Hope Leslieville. “This shelter uses the ‘housing first’ approach. We want to help get people housed and keep them housed.” Residents of New Hope Leslieville will also receive assistance from community partners. “We want to get our residents connected with resources that are already available, catering to the community’s needs as required,” says Clarke. Even after residents leave, the facility offers follow-up services, giving individuals the support they need to ensure that they have a successful transition. “The Salvation Army has a critical role to play in the movement to end homelessness,” says Bradley Harris,
executive director, Toronto Housing and Homeless Supports. “Continuing with the opening of New Hope Leslieville,
our focus is on serving clients sustainably and excellently as we develop and track meaningful program outcomes.”
Mjr John Murray, territorial public relations and development secretary, Bradley Harris and Neil Leduke (right), divisional director of marketing and communication, Ont. CE Div, take members of the media on a tour of the shelter
The New Hope Leslieville Shelter offers beds and programming for up to 60 men
New Worship Resource Available
n an effort to better support, resource and train worship leaders across the Canada and Bermuda Territory, the music and gospel arts department released a new resource in January, Worship Together: A Practical Aid for Worship Leaders, along with a companion workbook, F.L.O.W.: A Skill Development Tool for Worship Leaders. “We hope that this resource will encourage meaningful thought, prayer and discussion about worship and how we lead others in worshipping God,” says Heather Osmond, assistant territorial music and gospel arts secretary. Worship Together is designed to assist leaders as they plan, rehearse, support
and evaluate music for congregational worship, using F.L.O.W. as a guide—F, for Formation, covers planning for worship; L, for Leadership, covers building and leading a worship team; O, for Over and Over (Rehearse), offers practical ideas for making the most of rehearsals; and W, for Worship, provides suggestions for facilitating worship in a congregational setting. “As we focus on our mandate to equip, resource and inspire, we hope that this material will cultivate Christcentred and others-focused worship in your corps and communities,” says Osmond. Visit samagacb.com to download these resources. Salvationist March 2018 7
Photo: Sarah Williams
Sarah and AJ Ward, with their daughter, Laura, whose life was saved by a heart transplant
Heart to Heart
Their newborn daughter faced a life-threatening illness, but Sarah and AJ Ward knew God was with them.
hen Laura Ward was born at 2:54 a.m. on September 11, 2016, she was, by all accounts, a beautiful, healthy baby. “Everything went really well,” says Sarah, her mother. “She came out crying, and all her tests were normal.” A few hours after her birth, a nurse came to check on Laura. At nine pounds 12 ounces, she was a large baby. As the nurse noted, larger babies often have low blood sugar, so it wasn’t a surprise when Laura’s test came back low. She was given formula, but her levels didn’t improve, even after a second and third 8 March 2018 Salvationist
BY KRISTIN OSTENSEN feeding—the first sign that something might be off. When further tests revealed that Laura’s oxygen levels were also low, she was taken to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). Still hopeful that the problem was nothing serious, Sarah and her husband, AJ, were waiting for results with Laura in the NICU, when a pediatric cardiologist came to see them. “As soon as I heard his specialty my heart sank,” Sarah remembers. “Why did my perfect little girl need a cardiologist?” The news he delivered was both the worst and the best they could have imagined.
“There’s something wrong with Laura’s heart,” he told them, “but we can fix it.” Shocked “Other than the usual sickness, I had the perfect pregnancy,” Sarah says. The couple found out they were expecting on New Year’s Eve, and their excitement only grew as Sarah’s due date approached. They left their home in Saskatoon on September 10, expecting to be at the hospital for a couple of days; in the end, they were away for more than five months. “When we heard the diagnosis, I was
shocked,” says AJ. “Having a child born with a heart condition was not something that had ever occurred to me as being a possibility.” Laura was born with a heart defect called transposition of the great arteries. This means that the two large blood vessels that carry blood from the heart to the lungs—the aorta and the pulmonary artery—were switched. As Sarah and AJ learned, the surgery to correct the problem was relatively straightforward: the two arteries needed to be reversed so that they would be connected to the right part of the heart. “It’s one of the only heart conditions that can be cured,” Sarah says. “So there was a lot of hope. We thought, If something had to be wrong, this isn’t the worst thing, and we held on to that.” Out of Operation Two days after Laura’s birth, the family travelled to Edmonton, where the surgery would be performed—Sarah and Laura by medical plane, AJ and Sarah’s mother, Major Lee Anne Hoeft, by car. Sarah’s father, Major Mike Hoeft, followed soon after. With little time to prepare for their stay in an unfamiliar city, they were grateful for the practical assistance they received from family, friends and The Salvation Army. “We were fortunate to be able to stay in an apartment that belongs to the Army,” says Sarah, a senior soldier at Saskatoon Temple. “That was help-
ful because there’s nothing in place for families in our situation. You have to pay for a hotel, or hope to get into a Ronald McDonald House, but their waiting list is huge.” When it was time for the surgery, Sarah and AJ walked with Laura to the operating room. “That was so tough,” Sarah remembers. “When you watch the doors to the surgical suite close, all you feel is emptiness and fear.” Six and a half hours later, the surgery appeared to be a success. There were some complications—a collapsed lung meant Laura required respiratory support—“but her recovery was going well otherwise,” Sarah shares. “Her heart looked good so we thought we were in the clear. “But nine days after her surgery, very unexpectedly, her heart stopped.” The Darkest Hours Laura was in cardiac arrest for 90 minutes. “They tried everything and nothing was working,” Sarah says. “They just couldn’t get her back. No explanation— they had no idea what happened.” With Laura’s life hanging in the balance, the family took time to pray. “My dad prayed with us and it meant so much,” Sarah remembers. “He also sent out a call for prayer to the other pastors in the Prairie Division.” The only option was to put Laura on full life support—an extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) machine. After the ECMO was set up,
While waiting for a transplant, Laura was given an external mechanical heart
Sarah, AJ and Laura, shortly before her fourth open-heart surgery
Sarah and AJ were invited to see Laura. “There are no words to describe the sight we saw when we walked in,” Sarah remembers. “She was attached to more wires, lines and tubes than you could count. But somehow, it was still Laura.” In the days that followed, Laura had numerous procedures—but as one problem was fixed, another would take its place. About a month after her birth, when Laura was facing yet another openheart surgery, the weight of the situation nearly overwhelmed AJ. “Sarah and I were incredibly nervous about this surgery because it had a 25 per cent mortality rate,” he says. “This was the first time that we started to think there was a possibility that Laura might not make it. “Yet it helped knowing that my parents and hundreds of people, spread out across the whole continent, were praying for Laura,” he continues. “We were scared, but we were together and could lean on each other for support.” As before, Laura’s health improved after surgery. But on November 14, at just two months old, she experienced her second and third cardiac arrests, lasting seven and 30 minutes each. “The worst part was being told, ‘We don’t know if she’s still there,’ ” Sarah says. “ ‘After this much damage, and this much time without oxygen to her brain, we don’t know what she’ll be like when she wakes up.’ ” While they waited for Laura to be put on ECMO again, Sarah and AJ had their most difficult conversation yet. “We had to ask, at what point do we say enough is enough?” Sarah remembers. “But we both said, ‘Let’s fight until there’s no reason to.’ ” “In the darkest times, God was there to get us through,” adds AJ. “No matter how sick Laura got, I always felt like he was watching over her.” Salvationist March 2018 9
The Best Gift On January 7, 2017, Laura had her sixth and final open-heart surgery. “She had been through so many more complicated surgeries at that point, that getting a heart transplant kind of seemed like nothing,” Sarah says with a laugh. “It sounds funny, but we were really relaxed for her transplant surgery.” The Wards spent five weeks in the hospital in Edmonton post-operation, before they were transferred to Saskatoon and then, finally, home. “We had prepared for a newborn and, instead, we were going home with a fivemonth-old, so nothing was ready,” Sarah smiles. “Before we left, we didn’t even know if we were having a boy or a girl!” Of course, Laura was no ordinary baby girl. When Sarah and AJ first brought her home, she was on a feeding tube and required feedings every three hours. She was also on 14 medications, which she received every two hours, day and night, as well as two daily injections. “We knew it was a lot to take on, but 10 March 2018 Salvationist
we were so ready to leave the hospital,” says Sarah. “We had to be her medical team at home, as well as her parents, and it was hard. But we dealt with it gladly because we had Laura at home with us and that was the best gift we could have received.” Dedication Within a few months, Laura’s health improved to the point where she no longer needed a feeding tube and she was down to just four medications and two supplements. With physical and occupational therapy, Laura was even on track developmentally for her age. When Mother’s Day came in May, it was a day of celebration—not only because Laura had come so far, but also because it was the day Sarah and AJ had Laura dedicated at their corps, with Majors Mike and Lee Anne leading the service. “It meant so much to me to have my parents do it,” says Sarah. “They had been with us in Edmonton for almost a month. They had seen how bad it was, and there were so many moments when we didn’t think we’d get to that point— they understood that this was not an ordinary dedication.” The service was deeply meaningful for the corps family as well. “Our corps in Saskatoon was incredibly supportive,” says AJ. “They prayed for Laura and for us constantly. They also assisted us financially through a fundraising dinner and love offerings,
which were hugely helpful.” “It was a big deal for them to see Laura looking as good as she did,” Sarah adds. “They were able to see that their prayers had been answered.” Gratitude Now 18 months old, Laura is walking, talking and growing, just like any other happy toddler. “She smiled for the first time before her third open-heart surgery, when she was only a month old, and she never stopped smiling,” says Sarah. Still, as a transplant recipient, Laura faces unique challenges. To avoid rejection, she takes immunosuppressant medications, which increase her vulnerability to illness. So when Laura picked up a cold over the Christmas holidays, it meant several trips to the clinic, blood tests, medication adjustments and around-the-clock care. But despite the difficulties they’ve faced, Sarah and AJ approach their transplanted life with gratitude and faith. “We thank God all the time, even in the absolute worst times,” Sarah says, “because we got to see Laura pull through. We got to see all of these miracles happen in her life. The whole experience has really strengthened our faith. “If ever I were to doubt that God is with us, I just have to look at Laura,” she concludes. “It’s a clear sign, right in front of me, that he’s been with us, and he always will be.”
Photo: Sarah Williams
Life Support After the second and third cardiac arrests, it became clear that Laura needed a heart transplant. “The doctor told us, ‘If she’s well enough to get a transplant, that’s our only option,’ ” Sarah shares. “So all of a sudden, transplant went from this big scary word, to the only thing that was hopeful.” While she waited on the transplant list, Laura was given an external mechanical heart called a Berlin heart. “We saw her improve almost immediately,” Sarah says. “It was so encouraging.” By the time Christmas came, Laura was learning to sit up—awkward though it was with the Berlin heart attached to her—and her breathing tube was removed. “After three months, we were finally able to hear her voice,” Sarah remembers with a smile. The Wards spent Christmas in the hospital’s intensive care unit, but made the best of it—setting up a small Christmas tree and exchanging gifts. “At that point, it was nice to be in the ICU for Christmas,” Sarah says. “We had lived with the people there for three months, so they were our family.” Sarah and AJ expected Laura to be on the transplant list for three to six months. But after just 54 days, they received the news: a new heart was available. “I think that was the happiest moment I’ve ever experienced,” says AJ.
AJ, Sarah and Laura, with Sarah’s parents, Mjrs Lee Anne and Mike Hoeft, at their home corps, Saskatoon Temple. Mjrs Hoeft hold social services appointments in Saskatoon, with Mjr Mike also serving as area commander in the Prairie Div
What Jesus Sees
How Palm Sunday points us to “the things that make for peace.”
t’s not the destination, it’s the journey that matters.” There is some truth to this statement. But without a destination, a walk can seem more like wandering than a journey. Without the Stanley Cup, November’s games hold little meaning. With Palm Sunday, the church comes to the destination, the goal of Jesus’ journey. Luke’s Gospel takes us on the journey of Jesus to Palm Sunday, a journey shaped by peace. At his birth, the heavenly host sings its praise for “God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace” (Luke 2:14, all references NRSV). Years later the child born in a manger begins his public ministry in Galilee. He teaches with parabolic words and actions; he heals body, mind and community; he practises hospitality with the excluded; and the Saviour forms a company of disciples. This ministry evokes both praise and opposition. A turning point is reached: “When the days drew near for him to be taken up, he set his face to go to Jerusalem” (Luke 9:51). From this moment on, the destination is fixed, the goal is set and Jesus intentionally sets out toward that goal. Finally, he arrives at the city and the day we call Palm Sunday (see Luke 19:28-42). Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem is rich in symbolism, interpreted by his religious tradition. He instructs two of his disciples to locate “a colt that has never been ridden” (Luke 19:30). This request has in mind the refrain of Zechariah: “Rejoice greatly, O daughter Zion! … Lo, your king comes to you … humble and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey” (Zechariah 9:9). Through
this symbolic act, Jesus demonstrates the kind of kingship he exercises—one of humility. As Jesus enters the city, crowds line the route. They place cloaks before his path as a gesture of acclaim; voices shout praise for “deeds of power that they had seen” (Luke 19:37). Leading up to this moment, Jesus had healed lepers, raised the son of a widow from the dead, given life to the daughter of Jairus, delivered Legion of his tormented mind, calmed raging waves of the sea, straightened the back of a crippled woman, and more. His acts of healing were often accompanied by the blessing, “Go in peace” (Luke 7:50; 8:48). Thus, Jesus enters Jerusalem to the sounds of praise: “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven, and glory in the highest heaven!” (Luke 19:38). However, not all voices spread garments of praise along the road. Some— not all—of the Pharisees object: “Teacher, order your disciples to stop” (Luke 19:39). Were their objections voiced out of fear for Roman policing? Were they voiced in protest of the theological implications of attributing such praise to this Nazarene on a donkey? Luke’s Gospel doesn’t say. But the Teacher responds: “I tell you, if these were silent, the stones would shout out” (Luke 19:40). Nothing further is heard from the voices of opposition— for now. As Jesus “came near and saw the city, he wept over it” (Luke 19:41). What is important, for Luke’s Gospel, is not what the crowd or Pharisees saw, but what Jesus sees. And he sees the city of peace— the city of shalom—that does not know
“the things that make for peace” (Luke 19:42). Jerusalem doesn’t perceive the things that make for its peace, health, prosperity and life. And so the person whose birth anticipated peace now weeps over the city that doesn’t understand “the things that make for peace.” As Jesus comes near and sees the cities of our nation—from Prince George, B.C., to Iqaluit, Nunavut, to St. John’s, N.L., and everywhere in between—what does he do? Surely Jesus weeps, knowing that: •• the bodies of Indigenous teens are thrown into our rivers; •• women experience violence in our homes, entertainment industry and public institutions; •• the greed of CEOs and shareholders can shut down major retailers; •• officials of sport organizations refuse to see the evidence of the impact of repeated injuries on athletes’ brains; •• parents eat meals, glued to their smartphones, while their children sit and wonder; and •• symbols of hate are scrawled on the walls of mosques and synagogues. With Palm Sunday we accompany Jesus into the agonizing week that defines us—Holy Week. It is, in fact, anything but a peaceful week, and yet it culminates in those events that accomplish our peace: the cross and Resurrection. Let us set our faces to this Holy Week, and more fully understand the things that make for our peace. Major Ray Harris is a retired Salvation Army officer. He attends Heritage Park Temple in Winnipeg. Salvationist March 2018 11
Photo: © Image 1:27/Lightstock.com
BY MAJOR RAY HARRIS
Seize the (Purple) Day Salvationist Tom Nesbitt doesn’t let epilepsy stop him from doing what God has called him to do. BY KRISTIN OSTENSEN
Tom Nesbitt and his mother, Judy, march in the Purple Walk for Epilepsy Toronto
om Nesbitt arrives for our meeting cheerfully dressed in his Salvation Army uniform. It’s December, and after we finish, he’ll be heading to a nearby Loblaws to volunteer with the Christmas kettles. “I love doing the kettles,” he says with a smile. “I love interacting with the people and the fact that my grandparents, my father and my uncle all did kettles. I feel like I’m continuing the tradition.” In uniform, Tom looks like any other Salvationist, save one important detail— a bright purple cast peeking out of the right sleeve of his tunic, the result of a sports injury. Purple is the colour of epilepsy awareness—a passion project for Tom, who was diagnosed with epilepsy when he was three years old. 12 March 2018 Salvationist
“I want to help people understand what it is and what it’s like, so that the myths and stigmas associated with epilepsy will be broken,” he says. The purple cast is a small gesture, but it provides an opportunity to have a conversation, to educate people about epilepsy and normalize it so that, as Tom says, they “see the person,” not the condition. Cause Unknown Epilepsy is a neurological disorder that manifests itself in the form of seizures. It affects one in 100 Canadians, but in 50 to 60 per cent of cases, including Tom’s, the cause is unknown. “The doctors have never been able to pinpoint that part of the brain where the seizures are coming from, or what caused me to have it, because no one else in my family has ever had epilepsy,”
Tom explains. As a child, Tom had multiple seizures a day, most of which were tonic-clonic (grand mal)—the type of seizure most commonly associated with epilepsy. “I spent a lot of time at Sick Kids Hospital in Toronto growing up,” he says. “I was put on many medications, and it was hard spending half of the time at home and the other half in the hospital. But I’ve come a long way because I’m not on as many medications and my seizures have been reduced a lot since I was young.” Along with medications, Tom has a vagus nerve stimulator, a medical implant that acts as a “pacemaker” for the brain, sending regular, mild pulses of electrical energy to the brain via the vagus nerve in the neck. “I still have seizures, but now it’s normally when I’m in deep sleep, or coming
Responding to a Seizure If someone is having a seizure: • Stay calm. Seizures usually end on their own within seconds or a few minutes. • Create a safe space. Move sharp objects out of the way. If the person falls, place something soft under their head and roll them on their side. If the person wanders, stay by their side and gently steer them away from danger. • Time the seizure. Call 911 if the seizure lasts more than five minutes or if the person has multiple seizures. • Provide reassurance. When the seizure ends, stay with them until complete awareness returns. • Do not restrain the person or put anything in their mouth. Adapted from Epilepsy Ontario, epilepsyontario.org/about-epilepsy/ first-aid.
been on two mission t r ip s w it h T he Salvation Army— at a sports camp in England and in New York City following the 9/11 terrorist attacks. “When he was first diagnosed with epilepsy, our doctor said, ‘He’s better to fall out of a tree and break his arm from a seizure than break his heart by saying he can’t climb the tree,’ ” Judy shares. “And as tough as that is, it’s wonderful advice.”
Photo: Timothy Cheng
out of a deep sleep, that it happens,” Tom explains. The last time Tom had a seizure during the day was in September 2013. “I was with my mom, walking down the street near the condo building where we live,” he remembers. “It was hot and I had a drop seizure.” “He fell to the ground and fractured his C1 vertebra,” his mother, Judy Nesbitt, adds. “But he was very fortunate; it could have been worse.” Tom wore a neck brace for five months while the vertebra healed, but he took the experience in stride. “I didn’t let the collar stop me from doing a five-kilometre walk for Epilepsy Toronto,” Tom says proudly. “They thought I might want to stand on the side and cheer everyone on, but I’d been training with my mom for a long time to do it. Even with the collar, we did it in less than an hour!” That determination and positive attitude have been characteristic of Tom’s response to his illness throughout his life. A dedicated Toronto Maple Leafs fan, he plays hockey and practises hapkido karate. He’s also an active member of North Toronto Community Church, teaching Sunday school and volunteering with the kettles and more. Tom has even
Education and Tom is a senior soldier at North Toronto CC Advocacy This month, Tom will temporarily trade what it’s like to live with epilepsy,” Tom his Salvation Army uniform for a purshares. “When I was little, I used to think ple T-shirt as he participates in Purple that I did something wrong and this was Day on March 26, an annual event to God’s way of punishing me. But as I got raise awareness about epilepsy. It was older, I started to think of it more as a founded in 2008 by Cassidy Megan, then blessing because it gives me the opporan eight-year-old girl from Nova Scotia, tunity to talk to people about epilepsy.” who wanted to educate her classmates Education is crucial as epilepsy is a about epilepsy. The idea was picked up by disorder that’s still widely misunderstood the Epilepsy Association of Nova Scotia and rarely talked about. Many people and has since become a global event, held would not know how to respond in the in more than 100 countries. event of a seizure (see box), though Tom “I think The Salvation Army should says that’s beginning to change. get involved with Purple Day because “I was at my cousin’s wedding recepwe are a worldwide organization and tion, having a slow dance when I got we have the ability and the resources to really warm and had a seizure,” Tom reach millions of people,” says Tom. “It’s shares. “My dance partner dropped me a fantastic opportunity for the Army to the ground and the music stopped. to show it doesn’t discriminate, and let But my cousin came over and said, ‘It’s people know that if you have epilepsy, fine, it’s just my cousin. He’s having a it shouldn’t stop you from doing what seizure, but his mom’s here, it’s OK. Just God has planned for you to do.” He put the music back on.’ ” encourages Salvationists to show their support by wearing purple, posting Overcoming Obstacles on social media or attending a Purple As we wrap up our meeting, Tom gives Day event. me a purple bracelet. Printed on one Tom has been involved with advocacy side is the address for Epilepsy Toronto’s for persons with epilepsy since 2010, website; on the other, three simple words: when he first attended BuskerFest, a See the person. It sums up our conversaweekend of events organized by Epilepsy tion perfectly. Toronto. As well as raising awareness, “I hope that when people see me, the festival raises money for the organwhether I’m wearing a purple T-shirt ization, which has been a godsend for or the Army uniform, they see Tom Tom, who attends their Friday recreation Nesbitt,” he says, “not only a person group and job-finding club. of God and a representative of The “Ever since I got involved with Salvation Army, but also someone who Epilepsy Toronto, I’ve grown more conhas overcome a lot of obstacles, and has fident in wanting to tell my story about not let epilepsy define who I am.” Salvationist March 2018 13
Life of the Party
Others—Trade for Hope brings women in Canada and around the world together.
14 March 2018 Salvationist
Photo: Cpt Laura Van Schaick
e’ve heard it before: “Be the change you want to see in the world.” It’s what women want: to be the change, to do something that makes a difference in the lives of other women in our community or on the other side of the world. That’s why The Salvation Army’s Others—Trade for Hope program is gaining such support across the territory. An international initiative that supports individuals—primarily women—who are struggling to provide for themselves or their families, Others manufactures and sells an array of products, from scarves and jewelry to dish towels and aprons. The Salvation Army teaches women a craft and pays them fair wages to create handicrafts that are then sold internationally. These products make real change possible, helping women support their families and escape the cycle of poverty. The Salvation Army in Prince Albert, Sask., recently hosted an Others—Trade for Hope party. Nearly 100 women attended, viewing handicrafts and hearing the stories of the women— from Bangladesh, Pakistan, Kenya and Moldova—who made them. Women such as Mina, who was rescued after 18 years of being trafficked as a sex worker, and now helps other women still working in the brothel to find training and work with the Others program. Trish Patey was one of the women in attendance at the party. Patey works with marginalized women in northern Saskatchewan, so the goal of making a difference in the lives of women internationally struck a chord with her. “I have worked with women who have been marginalized in some capacity for many years,” she says. “When I see programs like Others, I am reminded that there is good in the world. There are people who are willing to take time to teach these new skills so women are able to support themselves and their families with dignity, and this gives me hope. The products are beautiful and well crafted.
BY CAPTAIN LAURA VAN SCHAICK
Pennie Young and Trish Patey display some of the products they purchased at an Others—Trade for Hope party in Prince Albert, Sask.
I was delighted to purchase some and to spread the word about the Others—Trade for Hope program.” Because of the popularity of home parties, an Others party may draw in women who are not normally involved in Salvation Army ministry. In Prince Albert, the women were eager to participate and support this program. Patey shares, “I see God working through the Others program to spread his love and message to those in our city who may not normally be exposed to topics such as social justice. It’s the little things that make a difference, and I believe the Others program has opened our eyes to the challenges women face in other parts of the world. Every little bit helps.” Pennie Young was also happy to learn about the Others program. “I have done some cross-stitching and know how long it takes to make such fine products,” she says. “I was amazed at how much work went into these precious items.”
Attending the Others party also caused Young to reflect upon her own situation in life. “It made me look at myself and all that I have, how much God has given me,” she says. “I see God making people in countries like Canada more aware of how privileged we are. We have the capacity to reach out and help those less privileged.” Patey agrees. “God has been working through The Salvation Army in Prince Albert to reach women in the community. It is wonderful to also enlighten them of the many good things that The Salvation Army is doing around the world.” Others—Trade for Hope is an initiative of the women’s ministries department. For more information or to hold a party in your area, contact others@ can.salvationarmy.org. Captain Laura Van Schaick is the corps officer at The Salvation Army, A Community Church in Prince Albert, Sask.
Dennise Yarema holds fresh lettuce picked from the tower garden at Bethany Hope Centre in Ottawa
You don’t need a green thumb for this innovative tower garden. BY GISELLE RANDALL
hen The Salvation Army Bethany Hope Centre in Ottawa serves lunch to the young parent families who participate in their programs during the week, salad is always on the menu—with fresh lettuce picked from the tower garden just down the hall. The futuristic-looking vertical garden, which uses aeroponics to grow plants without soil, is part of the Nourish Family Food Centre. “Our young families need good food as a way to nourish their bodies and promote healthy child development,” says Dennise Yarema, Nourish Family Food Centre co-ordinator. “But we don’t want to offer food in a way that does more harm than good. We are committed to a fair and healthy food system, and having a tower garden is one small way we are working toward that commitment.” The food centre is a recent initiative at Bethany Hope, developed in 2016 after
receiving a Salvation Army Feed My Lambs grant. “This grant allowed us to shift from a traditional, charitable model of food service to a community-based model that focuses on food security,” says Yarema. “Our goals are to increase access to affordable, nutritious and—where possible—local food; increase skills and knowledge around food; and advocate for the right to good food for all people.” The Nourish programs include nutritional assessment and support, a learning centre, an outdoor community garden, a breakfast and school lunch box program, a “make and take” meal, and a food bank. They added the indoor garden after learning about them from another agency, and realizing it could be used to provide healthy food throughout the year and as a teaching tool. “In the winter months, our delivery from the Ottawa Food Bank often lacks fruits and vegetables, so now we can
supplement it with greens from the tower garden,” says Yarema. “We harvest about 15 heads of lettuce every two weeks.” They purchased the tower garden from a distributor called Juice Plus+, and it came with seeds, a kit to start seedlings using rockwool, and liquid nutrients. “All you need is electricity to power the lights and the pump, and a level area,” says Yarema. The tower uses a method of growing plants called aeroponics. A reservoir at the base holds water and the nutrient mixture. A pump pushes the solution to the top of the tower, where it cascades down over the exposed plant roots. A standard tower garden is 1.57 metres tall, about one metre in diameter, and holds up to 20 plants. It can grow vegetables, herbs, fruit and flowers— almost anything except root crops, grapevines, bushes and trees. “We tried tomatoes and peppers, but you have to do the pollination yourself, so it’s a bit more complicated,” says Yarema. “If we got another tower, maybe we’d experiment a little bit more with some other fruits and vegetables.” As well as greens for their weekly meals and food bank, the garden has provided many learning opportunities. “Some of the kids here in our playroom helped us plant our first seedlings, and pop them in the tower,” says Yarema. “And we have a few participants who have taken responsibility for the upkeep— checking the water and nutrient levels two or three times a week—along with their kids.” Although the maintenance is simple, it needs to be consistent. “If a ministry unit was closed for several weeks, you’d need someone to come in and check on it—just like your house plants,” says Yarema. “But the biggest surprise is that it was a lot easier than we thought it was going to be. It produces more food than we thought, faster than we thought.” The garden tower has allowed the children and young parents at Bethany Hope Centre to explore growing food, and see where it comes from. “Having gardens on-site, whether indoors or outdoors, allows our community to be part of their own food system,” says Yarema. “Instead of just giving our participants food from our food bank, we are able to invite them to be part of the entire process from start to end, seed to table.” Salvationist March 2018 15
Testify! Sharing the hope we have in Christ is central to our faith.
s Easter approaches, a time when we rejoice in what Christ has done for us, I am reminded of a practice in the Army that seems to be increasingly left out—the testimony period, once a much-anticipated part of the Sunday evening service. Some were short: “Saved and satisfied.” You could expect someone to quote a favourite Bible verse or a stanza from the song book, often the beloved line: “When I first commenced my warfare many said I’d run away; But they all have been deceived, in the fight I am today” (SASB 856). But the real gems were the accounts of what the Lord had done in the testifier’s life that week— perhaps an encounter where they were able to share their faith, or how they had experienced God’s promises. The format of the testimony period varied. Sometimes it was planned ahead, with a few people, such as the newly enrolled, asked to share. Other times it was the “popcorn” or “snowball” style— often dreaded, because you never knew when you might be called upon to stand up and testify. But sharing the hope we have in Christ is central to our faith. We should “always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have” (1 Peter 3:15). Have our services become so neat and tidy that the testimony period has lost its place? Has it been all but squeezed out? Have our services become so sanitized and scripted that there’s no room for the Holy Spirit to speak 16 March 2018 Salvationist
spontaneously through his people? “For it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you” (Matthew 10:20). The testimony period is one of the hallmarks of our worship services, and part of our practical training. If we are accustomed to sharing our faith indoors, we will be more likely to share it outdoors. Let us not forget the example of the early church, and the power of testimonies. Peter, the untrained yet inspired speaker after Pentecost? Stephen, full of the Holy Spirit? Paul, once Saul? Salvationists were once known to be ready, in season and out of season, to share that word of witness noted in our song book: “I want to tell you what the Lord has done, what the Lord has done for me” (SASB 852). Are Salvationists ready today? You might expect that the chief
secretary would look to our orders and regulations for guidance on this subject. For corps officers, it reads: “Testimony should have an important place in meetings. The officer should encourage voluntary testimony in addition to testimony by invitation. New converts should be urged to testify. Such testimonies will often help strengthen the resolve of the convert and at the same time encourage and inspire others.” For soldiers, “the victorious life demands open and courageous confession before other people about one’s wish to live as a Christian. Because it has always been the conviction of The Salvation Army that those who have experienced the salvation of Christ are called to be witnesses for him, right from the moment of his conversion the convert should be prepared to witness by his word of testimony.” I encourage soldiers to read the rest of the relevant sections in Chosen to be a Soldier under the headings “Witnessing and Working” and “Public Speaking.” If we are not doing so already, can we consider giving the testimony period more prominence in our worship services? Surely as we prepare for Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday, we are reminded that personal witness is of high importance. “For the Holy Spirit will teach you at that time what you should say” (Luke 12:12). Colonel Lee Graves is chief secretary of the Canada and Bermuda Territory.
Photo: © 60kean/iStock.com
BY COLONEL LEE GRAVES
CALLING THE COURAGEOUS
Kerri Cryderman is a fourth-generation corps sergeant-major
Covenantal Living Kerri Cryderman is modelling soldiership for the next generation. BY KEN RAMSTEAD
didn’t become a soldier because all my friends were doing it,” says Kerri Cryderman, a senior soldier at Saskatoon Temple who has recently taken on the post of corps sergeant-major. “I’ve always felt that God was calling me to soldiership, even when I didn’t know it.” Natural Step Born to Salvationist parents, Cryderman’s family moved from Huntsville, Ont., to Saskatoon via Edmonton. “Growing up, I naturally became a junior soldier,” she says. “I don’t think I really thought about not being one.” When asked why, Cryderman recalls her fondest memories, such as the trips her family took to travel back to Ontario for Christmas. “As a child, I’d get to help with the hamper distribution, because in a small town corps, everyone pitches in, so I’d help pack sunshine bags surrounded by my parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins—all Salvationists. Growing up sur-
A Beautiful Thing This does not mean that Cryderman never pondered the implications of her decision. “As I’ve gotten older and matured, I’ve come to realize that soldiership is about covenant—making covenant for the right reasons and being sure of it.” Her corps officer agrees. “Kerri speaks of, and exemplifies, covenantal living,” says Lieutenant Dusty Sauder. “Besides leading worship and delivering meals to the elderly of the corps, she disciples teens heading into soldiership.” “Whenever I get into conversations about soldiership with them and why I am a soldier,” Cryderman continues, “it leads to the word covenant. The main point I always make is that they shouldn’t become a soldier just to be part of a group or because they want to join the band or because it’s expected of them. “When we think about entering into covenant—that decision to become a soldier and what it means to covenant with God—it’s a big deal and we need to take it seriously. First, it needs to be our choice. Second, we need to understand what covenant looks like, how beautiful and rich it can be. Third, if we fall, there’s grace at the cross, and so we have the opportunity to continually be in covenant with God. That’s the beautiful thing about it.” The Right Decision Cryderman immensely enjoys the soldiership classes she teaches. “I love seeing the hunger in these young people, the excitement that they have about this relationship with the Lord, the yearning to be closer to him,” she smiles. But her favourite part of the junior soldier classes are the one-on-one times spent with the young people to ensure that this is their decision, that there’s no expectation on anybody else’s part, that they truly understand the promise they’re making. “I want to make absolutely sure that they know what they’re getting into, and that they’re sure of it,” she says. Blessed Is officership in Cryderman’s future? As it happens, she’s been contemplating that next step now more than ever. “But I’m still grappling with that,” she says. “There are lots of things about full-time ministry that intrigue me. But I also firmly believe in local leadership, that there’s a value around serving and supporting officers.” Lieutenant Sauder agrees with her assessment. “Kerri is a voice for the corps and an ever-ready support to her officers,” he says. “Last year, she was heavily involved with the strategic planning for the temple and will be integral in its implementation. She is blessed to be a blessing.” “I’m still on my journey of faith,” Cryderman says, “and becoming an officer just might be the next step for me.” Salvationist March 2018 17
Photo: Candice Cryderman
rounded by extended family, I felt nurtured. Back at home in our church in Saskatoon, I was mentored by some amazing individuals who were not only strong in their spiritual walk but in leadership as well. I had authentic believers all around me, so I never wavered in my decision to become a senior soldier when I turned 16.” Seeing living examples of soldiership in action all around her made becoming a soldier a natural step.
Prayers of Protest Recovering the tradition of lament.
fter a tragedy, people often respond by saying their “thoughts and prayers” are with the victims and their families. I believe in praying for people, but I also understand why this phrase makes so many people angry—it can feel dismissive and insincere. And yet there’s something self-righteous about the keyboard activists making memes about “actually doing something.” Neither response really gets to the heart of the pain and sorrow that people are experiencing, or inspires any kind of commitment to accompanying them in the depth of their agony. We’re in this situation because we have forgotten how to lament. Honesty and Hope Lament is a common form of prayer across all cultural and religious traditions, not least in the Hebrew prayer book, the Psalms. There are more “lament psalms” than “praise psalms” (roughly 45 per cent of the Psalms involve lament), where Israel formally addresses God with a complaint and a petition. The lament gives God a motivation for action and expresses the belief that God will hear and respond with mercy. Lament can be thought of as prayer in the form of protest and the honest expression of pain, sorrow, doubt, accusation, anger or rage. Yet this prayer is offered within the context of deep faith, trust and hope. The Psalmist usually starts praising God for his faithfulness before the lamentable situation is even fully resolved. Psalm 4 affirms that God has granted relief “when I was in distress” (NRSV). Psalm 23 declares that God has set a table for me “in the presence of my enemies.”
18 March 2018 Salvationist
BY AARON WHITE This faithful hope and trust does not necessarily remove the lamenter from the situation, but allows them to deal with it courageously, and to lend courage to others as well. It is this faith, hope and courage that keep the lament from descending into a whine. True lament refuses abstraction and romanticism. It deals with the real, the particular, the specific. It mourns and rages and hopes at THIS moment, in THIS circumstance. It insists upon flesh and blood and brick and mortar.
“Thoughts and prayers” … I understand why this phrase makes so many people angry.
prayerful, and often doubtful, wrestling with him. In this we lack faith. Embracing and practising lament can therefore teach us to better love God, our neighbour and ourselves. It requires and produces honesty and vulnerability. It creates the necessary conditions for empathy. And it begins, exists and is fulfilled within the idea that God hears and knows our suffering, and is faithful to answer our cries and meet us in our need. Jesus prays a lament on the cross, when he cries out the opening lines of Psalm 22: “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” It is a troubling question, as are all laments. But he does not end with this anguished scream of protest. Jesus also prays out the last line of Psalm 22: “He has done it!” (see John 19:30). This means that Jesus inhabits the whole of Psalm 22 on the cross—the pain, the doubt and the questioning, as well as the faithful, hopeful, victorious resolution. Jesus demonstrates how to pray and live lament, through the worst of possible circumstances.
It embodies. One of the great dangers of modern religion is the retreat to theoretical prayers and theoretical answers to prayer. We do not lament well because we are not willing (nor encouraged) to go deep enough into our own pain, anger and disappointment. In this we lack courage. We do not lament well with others because we are not willing (nor encouraged) to go deep enough into the brokenness of our neighbours. In this we lack love. And we do not lament well to God because we are not willing (nor encouraged) to go deep enough in our
A Communal Experience So how do we practise lament? On a personal level, we need to be willing to sit with our sadness and disappointment. This does not mean being trapped in our misery. It means that we develop the courage to avoid denying, repressing or shoving our pain away. Instead, we acknowledge and lament pain, and then ask for the ability to hand it over to the Lord with faith, hope and gratitude. This is hard, but we can begin to practise this with all our emotions, including happiness. This is one of the ways we learn the essential discipline of detachment and
“Enough!” God is not intimidated by our honesty and vulnerability. We do this because we believe, and have experienced, that shared pain is somehow lessened, just as shared joy is increased. We cannot know the deep experience of joy until and unless we are willing to experience the deep well of lament. Lament is not despair; it is careful observation of a fallen world matched with accurate and appropriate response. It is this that clears the way for unreserved joy. More than “Thoughts and Prayers” One of the most important stories in our corps’ history illustrates this. During a painful and confusing season, we met for prayer, asking one another if our marginalized friends were really welcome in
the heart of our supposedly loving and incarnational fellowship. Did we really listen to the voice of the Lord through the cries of the oppressed and broken in our midst? We prepared to pray silently to consider the matter. As we began, we heard the loud, obnoxious cries of our friend Leena, newly released from jail, who had decided to attend our gathering. As she walked up the stairs, noisily crying and complaining, we knew there would be no silent prayer. She crashed into our meeting and began approaching each person in the room to give them a hug and to yell: “I love you!” Ten minutes later, she finished by sitting down in the centre of our circle. Leena is the most marginalized woman we know, the least welcome everywhere, the embodiment of pain. That night she came to us with her brokenness, her need, her lament, her insistence and her love. She spoke the words of God over us, and showed us what it means to have a heart close to Jesus. Leena showed us that God offers more to us than “thoughts and prayers.” He offers his presence. He hugs us and tells us that he loves us.
For Further Reading Prophetic Lament: A Call for Justice in Troubled Times by Soong-Chan Rah The Psalms as Christian Lament by Bruce K. Waltke, James M. Houston and Erika Moore A Grief Observed by C.S. Lewis A Sacred Sorrow by Michael Card Joy in Our Weakness by Marva J. Dawn Rejoicing in Lament by J. Todd Billings Where is God When it Hurts? and Disappointment with God by Philip Yancey The Cross and the Lynching Tree by James H. Cone Aaron White is the ministry director of 614 at Anchor of Hope Corps in Vancouver.
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Photo: © mimadeo/stock.Adobe.com
the fruit of contentedness. When we practise personal lament, we can also learn to engage in communal lament. This is something we have found necessary in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, a community extremely familiar with suffering. We have started setting aside time in our holiness meetings for communal lament. Expressing disappointment, sorrow and anger is very important, but we are often afraid to do so in prayer or worship. So we open up space for people to bring their pain, sorrow, doubt and even anger before God. And then, like Job’s friends (before they got all preachy), we take time to weep alongside one another, or to respond with holy, faithful, compassionate fury, or with deep, body-wracking sobs. There are times when we even dare to scream,
The Kibera slums are home to an estimated 1.5 million people. Many houses are built with mud, sticks and sheet-metal roofing
Disturbing My Present
It took a trip to Kenya to make me realize that denying myself elevates others.
Bettering Their Future I first glimpsed the Army’s Kibera facility from our van as it squeezed between the 20 March 2018 Salvationist
sheet-metal storefront of a coal merchant and a mud wall, and entered a guarded entrance. When the iron doors closed behind us, the roar of the slum became a hushed hum in the spacious compound. Since many families living in Kibera cannot afford to send their children to school, the Army employs local teachers to instruct two full classes for young children. Upon arrival, the children are provided breakfast, which often consists of porridge. For many, this is their only meal of the day. It was in this schoolyard where I met Pamela and Caroline, two mothers whose children attend the nursery. I watched as they joined other mothers in a shaded area. Each took a plastic chair and began stringing brightly coloured beads onto chicken wire. These strands of beads were then modelled into red reindeer figurines, which are sold to visitors for 450 Kenyan shillings ($4.50). Though the microfinance project only affords the women a small, infre-
quent income, for these HIV-positive mothers it is an alternative to sex work and often compensates for the jobs many
Photos: Joel Johnson
ast year, I travelled to Kibera, Kenya, with The Salvation Army as a youth ambassador for the Ontario CentralEast Division and Partners in Mission communications intern. Kibera is a slum settlement of Kenya’s capital city, Nairobi, home to an estimated 1.5 million people, many of whom live in abject poverty, earning less than a dollar a day. With mass unemployment, Kibera’s residents face housing issues as a result of underdeveloped infrastructure, with limited access to proper sewage disposal, clean water and adequate health care, and are vulnerable to a host of illnesses that ripple through the densely populated environment. In the heart of this slum, The Salvation Army operates a church, nursery and microfinance project.
BY BRIANNE ZELINSKY
A young girl cleans a plastic water pail in front of a mural that reads, “Kibera Art Institute”
of their husbands have lost in Kenya’s unstable economy. These mothers display hope in the way they dress their children for school, the way they decorate their homes with posters and fabric, and their desire to better their own future by participating in the Army’s crafting group. Heavy on the Heart When the school day had closed, I joined Pamela, Caroline and Caroline’s daughter, Brianna, on their walk home. With armed police escorting our team through the narrow, winding alleys, I felt a familiar rhythm to the buzzing slum economy. I quickly realized that the labyrinth of clothing lines, chicken-wired store windows, coal vendors, butcher shops and mango stands share many similarities with western entrepreneurship. There is joy, hope and resilience in the slum; however, the one obvious difference is that the families buying and selling in the market do so out of a will to provide and survive, with no room for excess. This became evident when we entered Pamela’s house. Just a small mud hut, it is home to almost a dozen people. The house, which resides on the lowest elevation of Kibera, frequently floods with sewage during heavy rainfalls. As the household matriarch, Pamela often finds herself on the floor, scrubbing away the waste. Later, at Caroline’s home, I took a polaroid photo of her and her daughter. While holding the only printed photo of her daughter, Caroline prayed that Brianna would grow up loving God and knowing he loves her back.
“Big Bri” ties her bracelet around the wrist of “Little Bri”
A woman reads from the Book of Mark in the Bible
In my hotel room that night, I wept and grappled with the reality that these stories do not solely belong to Pamela and Caroline; this is the story of a majority of people in our world. Upon hearing their stories, my place in the one per cent—that is, those who wake up with the privilege of choosing what to eat and wear while not having to worry about ever losing those luxuries—sat heavily on my heart. Casting Your Vote It’s easy to walk into a slum and identify problems. Far more disturbing was the revelation that even though it’s unjust that so many survive on so little, it’s far more unjust that I could survive on a whole lot less. In the wake of obvious need, it’s easy to be generous. What’s difficult is adopting the discipline of self-denial in a culture that tells us we never have enough. It was in Kibera that I came to understand the mission of The Salvation Army in new and surprising ways. That when our heart is aligned with God, when our heart breaks for what breaks his, when our present is disrupted and when our understanding of ourselves is disturbed, we are mobilized to action. Eight months after navigating the labyrinth of Kibera, I have challenged young people at Army youth retreats to “Disturb the Present,” to grow into a deep relationship with that which disturbs them most. Catherine Booth’s words are a challenge to all of us. She wrote that in order
Pamela outside her home in Kibera
“to better the future, we must disturb the present. Who is willing to be disturbed?” God is disturbing my present all the time, but the onus is on me to open myself up to people and opportunities that expose me to the needs of our world. This is also why I believe that in order to know God better, we need to be in community and in partnership with suffering humanity. For me, it took standing in a mud house the size of my bedroom to understand that denying myself elevates others. The money in our wallets, the hours in our days and the actions in our lives are votes, and where we cast them matters. It is through our actions, and the way they impact our communities on both a local and global scale, that we become missional. You don’t have to go to Kibera to achieve that. Salvationist March 2018 21
Daring to Lead Resolving the deathly dilemma of leadership.
he story of Joseph is usually told with the simplicity of a Sunday school lesson—he is presented as a hero who rose to power in Egypt, guided by God. But as we saw in the previous article (“The Perils of Power,” February), a close reading of the biblical text shows that some of his actions had dire consequences. Joseph was caught in the deathly dilemma of leadership—the use of power, even when motivated by a genuine desire to help, is frequently harmful. And yet, such leaders have many virtues and often accomplish much for the good of others. How can we account for this reality? Even more importantly, if we are so susceptible to the perils of power, how can we even dare to wield it? In this article, we will explore how Scripture and our doctrines can expose these ambiguities and provide a way forward. The Human Condition A Christian understanding of human nature runs in two directions at the same time. First, Scripture tells us that we have been created in the “image and likeness of God” (see Genesis 1:26). On the sixth day of creation, God saw all that he had made and called it “very good” (see Genesis 1:31). This is a profound affirmation of the value and dignity of human beings and the goodness of creation. On countless occasions throughout the Bible and ultimately in the sending of his Son, God confirms this assessment. But alongside this view of the intrinsic glory of humanity, the Scriptures also affirm that human beings are profoundly flawed—not by design, but in reality. From the beginning of the human story, we have been susceptible to self-interest, pride and pretense. This, of course, led to disobedience and the dramatic entry of sin into the world (see Genesis 3). The consequences of sin are so pervasive that the church teaches that human beings are fundamentally flawed—or, to use theological language, “depraved.” This word acknowledges that despite our best 22 March 2018 Salvationist
BY DONALD E. BURKE efforts and intentions, our every action is tainted in some way by sin. Of course, this is not the way God created us or the world; but it is a fundamental reality of the human condition as we experience it in a world defiled by sin. The Ambiguity of Power In practice, this means that when we are tempted to think we are motivated purely by service to God and our neighbour, we need to discern more clearly the elements of sin at work. We often operate with the grand delusion that we can transcend our self-interest, pride and pretense.
Joseph reassured his brothers, “Even though you intended to do harm to me, God intended it for good.” But Scripture and experience show us that this is not true. Within a Christian understanding, it’s not a matter of whether but how even my best actions are tainted by sin. The result is that we live with constant tension between our desire to do the right thing for the right reasons, and the limitations of our perspective and knowledge, enlisted in the service of our own interests. The crushing irony is that even in those moments when we think we are serving out of pure motives, we are simply blind to our self-interest. This is true especially for those who hold positions of leadership. Thus there is a fundamental ambiguity inherent in the use of
power that our actions always have both intended and unintended consequences, and that frequently it is impossible to separate them. We saw this in Joseph’s plan to save Egypt from famine. Even if we assume his efforts to stockpile food during the years of plenty were well-intended, the cost of implementing the strategy was severe for those Egyptians who didn’t turn over a portion of their harvest. And during the seven years of famine, Joseph may have thought it was reasonable to expect people to pay for the stockpiled food. But the impact was that most Egyptians were forced to exchange everything they had, including their freedom, to survive. Cultivating Humility What, then, is required of a person who exercises power over others? First, we need to cultivate the humility to recognize and acknowledge our limitations. We do not know every factor that might shape the impact of our use of power. To act as though we do is surely a recipe for the abuse of power. Second, we must acknowledge the ambiguous nature of our motives and intentions. Not only are our decisions limited by our knowledge, but also by our self-interest, pride and pretense. It is common for leaders to assume that their decisions are the best—if not the only reasonable—ones. For religious leaders, it is especially tempting to sanctify our decisions by identifying them with God. In the process, we fall into the trap of assuming that those who question or disagree with us are questioning and disagreeing with God. But such assertions are dangerous. The antidote is a healthy awareness that our decisions are only relatively righteous, at best. Third, we need to recognize that most of the decisions we make will have both intended and unintended consequences. While we may pursue an outcome for the good of all or to serve a larger purpose, we need to acknowledge that significant harm may be done as a result. Without
Illustration: © Sky Light Pictures/Lightstock.com
this awareness, we may blindly inflict harm upon others without mitigating that injury. Before we know it, the damage resulting from our decisions may well outweigh any potential good. Leaders who have this measure of self-awareness and insight often face decisions that torment them, because they know they will have hard consequences for others. It may even paralyze us into inaction. If we understand all this, and especially if we recognize the sin that is at work in our decision-making, how can we make any decision? Redeeming Leadership Fortunately, the Christian gospel does not leave us in this dark place. Alongside its teaching about the depravity of biblical characters such as Joseph, we also learn that they were capable of acts of nobility, generosity and faithfulness; and we attribute this to the work of divine grace. Therefore, while we affirm that sin taints our actions, we also affirm that
the prevenient and continuing grace of God works relentlessly to counteract our propensity to evil. As the Apostle Paul affirms in another context, “... where sin increased, grace increased all the more” (Romans 5:20). Properly understood, this tension between our sinfulness and the work of divine grace illuminates the good and ill that is at work in us and the complexity that this creates. It exposes the limitations of our altruism and the extent of our self-interest—and even our self-deception—while at the same time affirming that through divine grace God is capable of helping us transcend these limitations. And when we are trapped in this miry clay of our humanity, the grace of God lifts us up and transforms even our most paltry attempts to do good into deeds of grace. This is not a license to excuse or bless wrong actions; it is, rather, a confirmation of God’s determination to have grace overcome sin. Even in those moments when our deci-
sions produce a mixture of good and evil—just as Joseph’s did—God is transforming events so that good graciously triumphs over evil. Near the end of the Joseph story, there is a verse that reverberates through the Scriptures that shows us the way out of this deathly dilemma. After Joseph had been reconciled with his brothers, they nevertheless were still worried that once their father, Jacob, died, Joseph would take his revenge. In response, Joseph reassured his brothers with these words, “Even though you intended to do harm to me, God intended it for good” (Genesis 50:20 NRSV). This statement shines into the darkness of our human condition to affirm the miracle of God’s grace, which works to transform evil into good. This certainty is not without pain, but it does give us confidence that grace can redeem our leadership. Dr. Donald E. Burke is a professor of biblical studies at Booth University College in Winnipeg. Salvationist March 2018 23
What are you thankful for? BY LIEUTENANT ERIN METCALF
recently read the book One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp. It had been gathering dust on my bookshelf for quite some time, because—contrary to the oft-repeated proverb—I tend to judge books by their cover. And this one seemed too churchy, too directed at women (it was the bird’s nest with the perfect blue robin’s eggs that did it), so it stayed on the shelf—where it probably would have remained, but then a day came when I had some time off. Committed to not watching Netflix, I picked the book up and was soon moved by its simple depth. One Thousand Gifts spent 65 weeks on The New York Times Best Sellers list, and it’s easy to see why. Voskamp is someone who knows pain. At a young age, she witnessed the death of her little sister in a horrific accident, which profoundly affected her family. Voskamp struggled with severe anxiety, cutting 24 March 2018 Salvationist
and suicidal thoughts. One Thousand Gifts began as an experiment, a “dare to live more fully” by keeping track of things for which she is grateful, and helped her see the world from a new perspective. As I read Voskamp’s words, my eyes were opened to the beauty of seeing little things as gifts from God. Wanting to do the same, but not nearly as diligent as Voskamp, I mostly dedicated my findings to memory, occasionally scribbling them down in various notebooks. Here is part of my list: 1. Old and cherished Christmas tree decorations 2. Flannel pyjamas and electric blankets 3. Snuggles with the kids 4. Deep, vulnerable conversations 5. Anniversaries and roller skates 6. Writing—especially when it’s hard 7. Volunteers 8. Coffee
The list is ongoing and will be until I have one thousand things. What I found so amazing about this experiment is that by reminding myself to be grateful for something that I would usually take for granted, negative thoughts were replaced by positive ones. Grace was constantly breaking through in small ways as God showed up in the little, seemingly insignificant things. Which is exactly what Voskamp says will happen. Instead of feeling frustrated that I was late dropping off my kids for an evening play date, I was able to appreciate a rare blood moon, and in that moment marvelled once again at God’s hand constantly guiding the cosmos, and gave thanks. (And laughed when my son exclaimed, “Blood moon—oh, that’s like a blue moon, only not blue!”) Instead of loathing another grocery shop that I didn’t have time for, I was grateful for full shelves and reasonable prices—a luxury not available in all countries—and gave thanks. Instead of throwing myself a pity party because I couldn’t have sweets over the Christmas season, I was grateful for strength and willpower to avoid sugar, and, recognizing that I felt better, gave thanks. And yet, as I worked through this exercise, I was deeply convicted that my “gratefulness” comes from a wealthy, privileged point of view. Because I was born and live in Canada, my gratitude list is never-ending—or ought to be. So how do I balance my genuine gratefulness for the blessings in my life, knowing there are horrific things inflicted on other human beings simply because of where they are born? I don’t know how to answer that question. What I do know is that as I experience gratefulness in new and profound ways, I am more and more aware that my privilege gives me the opportunity to reach out to those in need and to participate in this world as a changed person. As Voskamp says, “When I give thanks for the seemingly microscopic, I make a place for God to grow within me.” My prayer is that God may grow within me and use me for his kingdom. Lieutenant Erin Metcalf is the corps officer at Niagara Orchard Community Church in Niagara Falls, Ont.
Photo: © natalie_board/iStock.com
The Gift of Gratefulness
9. Fresh, hot coffee 10. Did I mention coffee?
And the Winner Is …
he 90th Academy Awards will air on March 4, highlighting some of the best movies of 2017. Here are a few films worth consideration:
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri Three Billboards is a film that explores the themes of sin, forgiveness and redemption. Frances McDormand (nominated for Best Actress) plays Mildred Hayes, the mother of a young woman who was violently murdered. Desperate to get the murder investigation moving, Mildred uses three billboards to capture the attention of the police chief (Woody Harrelson, nominated for Best Supporting Actor). As it turns out, the police chief is dying and decides to leave letters for people in the town, including a horrible racist cop named Jason Dixon (Sam Rockwell, also nominated for Best Supporting Actor). For Jason, redemption comes as he Frances McDormand stars in Three Billboards learns compassion. Outside Ebbing, Missouri Lady Bird The coming-of-age story is nothing new in Hollywood, but with five Oscar nominations and two Golden Globe wins, Lady Bird shows that it’s still possible to do something fresh and compelling with this genre. The story follows Christine McPherson (Saoirse Ronan, nominated for Best Actress), who insists everyone call her “Lady Bird,” as she navigates her final year at a Catholic high school. Her experience mirrors that of writerdirector Greta Gerwig, who says her time at Catholic school had a positive impact on her: “There were priests and nuns who were just compassionate and funny and empathetic and thoughtful, and they really engaged with the students as people.” The fraught relationship between the rebellious Lady Bird and her mother (Laurie Metcalf, nominated for Best Supporting Actress) forms the emotional core of the film, as Lady Bird struggles “Lady Bird” (Saoirse Ronan) and her best to define her own friend, Julie (Beanie Feldstein), navigate their identity, beliefs and final year at Catholic high school together in Lady Bird values.
collection of classified documents that show the truth about the Vietnam War—are leaked, Katharine Graham (Meryl Streep, nominated for Best Actress), owner of the newspaper, must decide whether or not to publish the information. A Best Picture contender, The Post makes a compelling case for freedom of the press and taking risks to fight for justice. Get Out How often does a horror-comedy film get nominated for Best Picture? It’s not a genre that typically commands critical acclaim. But Get Out is no slasher flick. In this film, the evil lurking in the shadows, waiting to pounce on Chris (Daniel Kaluuya, nominated for Best Actor) is—spoiler alert—racism. The set-up is simple: Chris and his girlfriend, Rose (Allison Williams), go to cottage country to meet her parents, where things are not as they seem. While there is some violence (viewer beware), the real horror comes from Get Out’s unsettling and thought-provoking critique of our culture. Don’t Forget the Documentaries … Strong Island: Filmmaker Yance Ford’s investigation of the 1992 murder of a young black man—Ford’s brother—chronicles the arc of a family across history, geography and tragedy, creating a deeply personal exploration of racism in America. Last Men in Aleppo: A boots-on-the-ground journalistic film that documents life in Aleppo during the Syrian civil war through the eyes of a group of volunteer rescue workers known as the White Helmets.
ON THE WEB The Living Word YOUTUBE.COM/SALVATIONISTMAGAZINE In the late 1950s, The Salvation Army in Canada created a 15-minute television program, using what was then a new medium, to bring the gospel to millions in North America. Called The Living Word, the programs were designed to lift a “living word” from the Living Word—the Bible—and would try to lead viewers to Jesus, the Living Word. The Canada and Bermuda Territory’s museum and archives has digitized all 139 episodes, which are now available on Salvationist’s YouTube channel. See salvationist.ca/ articles/2017/04/the-living-word-lives-again for more information about The Living Word.
The Post A timely film for the era of fake news, The Post is this year’s Spotlight. The “post” referred to in the title is The Washington Post and the setting is the early 1970s, when Richard Nixon was president of the United States. When the Pentagon Papers—a Salvationist March 2018 25
IN REVIEW I Can Only Imagine DIRECTED BY ANDREW AND JON ERWIN When MercyMe released the song I Can Only Imagine in 1999, it took the Christian world by storm, achieving double platinum status. A new film of the same name comes to theatres this month to tell the story behind the song. The film follows Bart Millard (J. Michael Finley), lead singer of MercyMe, as he’s growing up in Texas. After his mother leaves the family, Bart suffers physical and emotional abuse at the hands of his father (Dennis Quaid). Bart eventually loses his father to cancer, giving him the inspiration to write the song. Depicting Bart’s journey of forgiveness, I Can Only Imagine is a powerf ul reminder of how God can mend broken relationships.
26 March 2018 Salvationist
On Pills and Needles
BY RICK VAN WARNER Opioid-related overdoses have skyrocketed recently, claiming thousands of lives in Canada each year and creating a public health crisis. On Pills and Needles is a timely memoir from Rick Van Warner, a journalist and a Christian, whose son became addicted to opioids as a teenager. Van Warner takes readers on a personal journey, recounting times he searched abandoned buildings and dangerous streets looking for his missing son. He exposes the common causes of opioid addiction, effective and ineffective ways it has been treated, and how families can walk alongside loved ones who are dealing with the daily realities of addiction. Informative and harrowing, On Pills and Needles serves as a wake-up call and crash course on the opioid crisis.
REND COLLECTIVE Founded in Northern Ireland, Rend Collective is a modern praise and worship band with an indie-folk rock approach. Their latest album, Good News, is a collection of upbeat, uplifting, gospel-focused songs. It opens with a track called Life is Beautiful, which introduces many of the themes of the album. It’s a song of celebration as the chorus declares, “Rejoice, rejoice/In the sunshine, in the sorrow/Oh, my soul rejoice.” Its lead single, Rescuer (Good News), is outreach-focused, reminding listeners that God’s love is for everyone: “There is good news for the captive … the shamed … the one who walked away … the doubter … the one religion failed/ For the good Lord has come to seek and save.” With toe-tapping beats and inspiring lyrics, Good News captures the joy of knowing God.
The relentless fight to save my son from opioid addiction
PEOPLE & PLACES
Salvation Army Employee Honoured in Alberta EDMONTON—Pamela Spurvey, house operator for the Cornerstone program at The Salvation Army’s Addictions and Residential Centre in Edmonton, receives the Lieutenant-Governor’s Circle on Mental Health and Addiction’s True Grit Award, which honours successful efforts to reduce stigma, encourage recovery, and strengthen programs and services in the area of mental health and addiction. A devoted mother of five and grandmother of three, Spurvey is a peer support worker for Alberta Health Services, a mentor with the Edmonton Drug Treatment Court, sits on committees for Homeward Trust as a voice for people experiencing homelessness, and is a certified financial literacy instructor with Empower U, a program designed to help people achieve financial literacy and independence. Spurvey hasn’t always had this life—after a traumatic and tumultuous childhood, she spent many years feeling hopeless and believing there was no way out of her addiction and mental health challenges. With the help of a supportive community, self-help groups and guidance from health care providers, she gained the confidence needed to achieve wellness. She was also able to reconnect with her Indigenous culture. “Because I experienced so much in my own life, I feel that this helps me to connect better with the people that I work with,” she says. “Being able to help others by providing a voice to people that feel as though they have been forgotten or that society doesn’t care is one of the best things that I have ever done. It feels good to give hope and to truly make an impact in my community.”
GREENFIELD PARK, QUE.—These are exciting days at Living Hope Family Church as an adherent is enrolled and two people become members of the candidates’ fellowship. From left, Lts Juan Chirinos and Indira Albert, DYSs, Que. Div; Maude Fournier, adherent; Roberto Ramos and Perla Perez, members of the candidates’ fellowship; and Lts Vilma Ramos and Ricaurte Velasquez, COs.
YELLOWKNIFE—Pamela Murray displays her Soldier’s Covenant as she is enrolled in Yellowknife and becomes the Northwest Territories’ newest senior soldier. Supporting her are, from left, Mjr Elaine Bridger, AC, Alta. & N.T. Div; Byron Hardy, corps leader; James Moulton, fellow senior soldier; and Darlene Hardy, corps leader.
LABRADOR WEST, N.L.—Sean Fagan is enrolled as a senior soldier at Labrador West Corps. Supporting him are, from left, Lts Crystal and Norm Porter, COs, and Cliff Durdle, colour sergeant. ACTON, ONT.—The Army is mobilized for action at Acton CC as three junior soldiers are enrolled. From left, Mjr Drucella Pollard, CO; Kyndra Goodwin; Ryan Thompson; Conor Walsh; and Mjr Rick Pollard, CO. The corps family also celebrates the enrolment of Jan Bell, Edith Chaulk and Les Goodwin as senior soldiers, and Lillian Borgal, Mike Borgal, Doug Davison, Jane Davison, Leela Loknath, Lynda Thompson, Mary Tyrell, Gloria Vermeulen and Craig Wainwright as adherents.
What’s happening at your corps? We want to hear from you! Email email@example.com or call 416-422-6112. Salvationist March 2018 27
PEOPLE & PLACES
Professional Honour for Commissioner Susan McMillan TORONTO—Commissioner Susan McMillan, territorial commander, has been recognized by the Chartered Professional Accountants of Ontario as one of the CPAs in the province who “have rendered exceptional service to the profession and whose achievements and contributions in their careers and in the community have earned them distinction and brought honour to the profession.” These CPAs are elected Fellows, designated by the initials FCPA. Making the presentation are, from left, Ron Harvey, Investment Planning Council, Ottawa, and chair of the FCPA selection committee; and Alan T. Mak, Ferguson + Mak LLP, Toronto, and chair of the CPA Ontario Council. Commissioner McMillan earned her certified general accountant (CGA) designation in 1998 and, since the recent amalgamation of the professional accounting bodies, has been entitled to use the CPA designation. Prior to her appointment as leader of the Canada and Bermuda Tty, Commissioner McMillan served as territorial commander in the South America East Tty, as chief secretary in the South America West Tty, as financial secretary in both Canada and Bermuda and South America East, as well as secretary for business administration in Canada and Bermuda. In all of these roles her accounting and business acumen have contributed significantly to her service as a Salvation Army officer.
TORONTO—At the January meeting of the National Advisory Board, Commissioner Susan McMillan, territorial commander, presents certificates of appreciation to retiring NAB members Robert McFarlane (left), vice-chair, RSA Canada, and retired EVP and CEO, Telus, and Marnie Spears, president and CEO, Ketchum Canada, and acknowledges their years of faithful service to the community through The Salvation Army.
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BARRIE, ONT.—Barrie Bayside Mission’s Joanne Blackmore, kettle co-ordinator, and Mjr Flo Sharples, volunteer co-ordinator, receive certificates of appreciation as they retire following five and 10 years, respectively, of faithful service. From left, Mjr John Murray, territorial public relations and development secretary; Joanne Blackmore; Mjr Flo Sharples; and Jeff Robertson, area director for public relations and development, Ont. CE Div. Thanks to their hard work and dedication, Barrie Bayside Mission raised $552,856 in its 2017 kettle campaign.
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28 March 2018 Salvationist
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PEOPLE & PLACES
GAZETTE INTERNATIONAL Appointments: Apr 1—Lt-Cols Neil/Lynda Watt, CS/TSWM, Caribbean Tty (pro tem, until end of Jun); May 1—Lt-Cols Friday/Glory Ayanam, CS/TSWM, Ghana Tty; Lt-Cols Isaac/Eva Danso, CS/TSWM, Nigeria Tty TERRITORIAL Birth: Lts Daniel/Courtney Kelly, daughter, Elizabeth Rose, Dec 21 Appointments: Mjr Lorraine Abrahamse, divisional integrated mission secretary, N.L. Div; Cpts Sergii/Tatiana Kachanova, Surrey CC, B.C. Div (transferred from U.S.A. Central Tty) Extension of active service: Mjrs David/Edith Dean (Jun 2019) Promoted to captain: Lts Peter/Grace Kim Promoted to glory: Mjr Daisy Hatt, from Kingston, Ont., Dec 26; Cpt John Sloan, from Medicine Hat, Alta., Jan 23 JACKSON’S POINT, ONT.—Supported by their prayer partners and leaders, three senior soldiers are enrolled at Georgina CC. Front, from left, Kayla Sheppard, senior soldier; Sally Hill, children’s and youth ministries co-ordinator; Charlotte Peddle, senior soldier; and Jenna Sheppard, senior soldier. Back, from left, Mjr Max Bulmer, preparation course leader; Ken Brash, holding the flag; CSM Harold Reid; Rebecca Reid; and Lt-Col David Bowles, CO.
TRIBUTE HALIFAX—Helen Francis Levy was promoted to glory at the age of 87. An active soldier of Fairview Citadel for many years, Helen was an avid member of the home league and served as corps treasurer up to the time of her passing. Helen’s kindness and generosity will be missed by those who knew her.
CALENDAR Commissioner Susan McMillan: Mar 1-5 Whitehorse and Yellowknife; Mar 7 women’s evening, York CC, Toronto; Mar 14 evening service, Meighen Retirement Residence, Toronto; Mar 21 Let There Be Praise radio broadcast with Tom Quick, Faith FM 97.3, Kitchener, Ont.; Mar 23-26 CFOT and visit of Comrs Merle/Dawn Heatwole, IS/ZSWM, Americas and Caribbean, Winnipeg; Mar 27-29 territorial review with Comrs Merle/Dawn Heatwole, IS/ZSWM, Americas and Caribbean, THQ Colonels Lee and Deborah Graves: Mar 11-13 divisional review, Maritime Div; Mar 18 Rainbow Country Church, Parry Sound, Ont.; Mar 21 Let There Be Praise radio broadcast with Tom Quick, Faith FM 97.3, Kitchener, Ont.; Mar 27-28 territorial review with Comrs Merle/Dawn Heatwole, IS/ZSWM, Americas and Caribbean, THQ Canadian Staff Band: Mar 3-4 North Toronto CC Canadian Staff Songsters: Mar 3-4 corps anniversary, Guelph Citadel, Ont.
y lf n e D hyse T saworldmissions.ca Salvationist March 2018 29
From the Pampas to the Prairies
God has been faithful every step of the way. BY SAULO NEVES DE OLIVEIRA
Saulo Neves de Oliveira and his wife, Mara
was born in southern Brazil, where the culture is deeply rooted in the history and traditions of the gaúcho—a kind of South American cowboy who ranged the Pampas grasslands. Our community in Porto Alegre had many challenges—poverty, crime, violence—but most of my childhood memories are connected to attending The Salvation Army with my family. The best moment of the week was going to church together, singing Sunday school songs in my father’s old Chevrolet Opala. I can’t remember a specific moment when I decided to follow Jesus. I was a junior soldier, as my siblings were, but this was just a public expression of something that was part of our daily lives. We prayed before every meal, we did devotions, we asked God to meet our needs. We grew up knowing that faith was a relationship with God, as our present Father, and with Jesus, the 30 March 2018 Salvationist
one who gave us life. My father was a military musician, and the bandmaster at our church. He encouraged me to learn to play the trumpet, and later the trombone. It was my dream to play in a staff brass band, maybe even in Chicago or New York. I was fascinated by Salvationist history and also dreamed of visiting London, England. A Canadian Salvation Army officer who was working in Brazil, Major Sharon Giles, offered to teach me English. It was a good start. While I was studying kinesiology and attending a music conservatory, I was invited to work with youth in another denomination, where I led worship and conducted a youth and young adults choir. When this turned into helping newly planted churches establish music programs and worship teams, I was travelling almost 200 kilometres four times a week. On one trip, the day before start-
ing a new job teaching at a university in another state, I met my wife, Mara. When we decided to get married, I returned to Porto Alegre, and struggled to find a job. Finding out I had been selected in the competition to become a civil servant was an answer to prayer. I began teaching physical education in schools—a job that allowed us to marry and own a home. At the same time, I was accepted into the PhD program at one of the best universities in Brazil. In 2015, after we had been married for four years, God answered another prayer and opened the door for us to move to Canada. I received a government scholarship to study with a professor at the University of Calgary—someone I had wanted to work with for many years. He supervised my thesis in the area of education, sports and aging, and has become a good friend and mentor. His wife was also very supportive of Mara as we adapted to life in a new country. After completing my PhD, it wasn’t easy to start a career here. Reconnecting with Major Giles, who provided a reference for me as I applied for a position with the Army, was another sign of God’s faithfulness. Today, I am the youth and family ministries director at the Red Deer Church and Community and Family Services in Alberta. It is incredible how God made a way to bring me back to the Army, now with my wife. One of our biggest challenges is reaching young families. In Brazil, there were many young adults with children in church. Here, the demographics are different, with mostly seniors and a few children. We wonder, “Where are their families, and why are they not together?” While we understand there are cultural differences to be considered, we also believe that God has called us to serve the church in this area. We believe that God has done miracles everywhere to bring people to know him, and that our part is to offer a place where they can gather and develop deeper and stronger relationships with him. We are excited to be part of the corps in Red Deer and hope and pray that it increasingly becomes this kind of place. We look forward to seeing more people accept Christ. God has been faithful to us, helping us in small things to big things, always hearing our prayers. For us, faith is the only way to live. We don’t consider we have anything—everything belongs to God and he guides us in our steps.
Photo: Genessa Panainte
SOCIAL JUSTICE ISN'T A CLASS. ITâ€™S A CALLING. EDUCATION FOR A BETTER WORLD
Coming This Month From Triumph Publishing
ACROSS AN OCEAN AND A CONTINENT ACROSS AN OCEAN AND A CONTINENT
The Salvation Army as a Canadian Immigration Agency 1904-1932 by R.G. Moyles
ACROSS AN OCEAN AND A
The Salvation Army as a Canadian Immigration Agency 1904–1932
Brass bands, Christmas kettles, thrift stores—these are what most Canadians commonly associate with The Salvation Army. Few know, however, that between 1904 and 1932, the Army was an official immigration agency, approved and financially sponsored by Canada’s Department of Immigration. During that time, the organization brought to Canada approximately 111,000 British settlers, most of them juvenile male farm helpers and young female domestics. Across an Ocean and a Continent is a descriptive account of the Army’s immigration work, detailing how it conducted that work, offering first-hand reports of trips across the Atlantic and Canada in its chartered ships and trains, discussing its dealings with Canada’s Department of Immigration, and the public’s perception and reception of its efforts. Enlivened by more than a dozen personal recollections, this book not only expands our appreciation of The Salvation Army as a worldwide social agency but also provides another important chapter in Canada’s immigration history.
“R.G. Moyles knows how to make historical data come alive through striking facts and gripping first-hand accounts.”—General John Larsson (Rtd)
FOREWORD JOHN LARSSON
2018-01-25 10:55 AM
Dr. R. Gordon Moyles is a member of Edmonton Temple and a professor emeritus at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, having taught Canadian literature and served as the associate dean of arts. He has written 30 books, 12 of them on The Salvation Army, including Glory! Hallelujah! The Innovative Evangelism of Early Canadian Salvationists (Triumph Publishing, 2013). Visit store.salvationarmy.org to order your copy. Also available in Kindle through Amazon.ca.
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The Salvation Army exists to share the love of Jesus Christ, meet human needs and be a transforming influence in the communities of our worl...
Published on Mar 1, 2018
The Salvation Army exists to share the love of Jesus Christ, meet human needs and be a transforming influence in the communities of our worl...