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November 2015

And Life

Nov

Delve SGC

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My Story: Bev Holtzman

Features My Story: Bev Holtzman 3 Rememberance Day 7 Creative Expressions 10 Between the Testaments: The People of Israel and the coming of Alexander the Great and Hellenism 18

Departments Resource Centre 12 Discipleship Ministries 16

Information Contact Information 24 Community Corner 25 Calendar 26 Cover & Design: Clement Lee Contributors: Karen Cassel Beverly Holtzman Jesse James Joanna James Sam Lee Ben Reynolds Theo Spear Corinne Sutton-Smith

Delve submissions are due on the LAST MONDAY of each month. To submit for the next issue of Delve, please email: delve@springgardenchurch.ca 2

Copy Editors: Greg Kay Suzanna Lai Gene Tempelmeyer

I walked into this church with a mission. I was looking for a boyfriend who had just broken up with me. All I knew was that he attended a baptist church in North York. So with the yellow pages in hand, I called all the baptist churches in North York asking if they new this person. Spring Garden was the only one who said the name sounded familiar. So I showed up, for the sole purpose of finding this guy. 9:30 service, 11:11 service, 6:30 service... no guy but I found another who would never forsake me. I lived in a Jewish community in Montreal. I was raised in a normal middle class, dysfuntional secular Jewish home. We never went to synagogue nor read the Torah but we did celebrate all the high holidays. Of course. We were Jewish...because...we were Jewish...because we’re Jewish...because we were born that way and it is our heritage. For most of my life I was looking for a place to fit in; to be loved; searching to belong and fill the empty void I had inside me. I lacked purpose, significance and I was very lonely even though I was surrounded by many people and material things. I’d like to read you a passage from my journal that was written on Dec 28/88: “I have no one to turn to when I am blue. I feel alone and have a void that I can’t fill. I have no place I can fit in, no one is there to give me hope, strength or consolation. I’m so tired of taking from within with no one to help replensih it. I have felt this way since 1973 when I was only 15

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years old. I want to be accepted. I am so tired of being strong, I want to fall apart with someone who will be there to pick up the pieces but that someone is never there. I only have myself to turn to. I want to be loved for me just as I am. Why is life so diffcult, all I want to be happy. I am so lost and I have no more strength to go on.” Now, I had a good life, I wasn’t poor, abused or without many material things. I had a family and friends available to me but still felt empty. Over the past 24 years I have tried to fill this void with many things. Overtime at work, starting my own business, getting a part-time job, dating, shopping, spent money, organised my sock drawer and cleaning my apartment. But to no avail at the end of the day when I finally stopped! I was still empty and searching.

arms and open hearts. They are my family and I love being here. I have always been accepted just as I am, never having to change or forsake my Jewish heritage. I am so very blessed that God has brought these people into my life. Now my home is filled with bibles, devotionals, Christian music, Charles Spurgeon, Philip Yancey and of course Joyce Meyer. Never in a million years would I have thought to find myself here. But God knew what He was doing and the end result proves it. And this is only the begining, I am still a baby Christian and I am so honoured to grow under the guidance and influence of this faith community. Thank you, I was lost and now I am found.

I had no idea wht to expect when I walked into Spring Garden but God knew. The Holy Spirit directed me to a place that would end my searching. After spending my first day at Spring, I came home and wrote this passage: “My 1st day at church Sept 21/97, I loved it. I walked into Spring Garden Baptist Church and they had and open house. I felt so comfortable, at home. I went to three services, met many people. I think this is going to fill my void. I have always been looking for a place to fit in, to belong and be loved, maybe it is in religion, faith and the love of Jesus Christ. Perhaps this is what I have been searching for all my life. I feel so calm, I don’t need anyone but Jesus. I will pray that God gives me the strength to grow. I am looking forward to this new journey with all my heart.” My first cell group was with Wednesday women and I was so blessed to find such an amazing group of Christian women. They accepted me right away and helped guide me to a closer relationship with Jesus. When Colleen Howatt asked me if I wanted to receive Christ I said sure but I had no idea what that meant. So I became a Christian soley by faith...no pun intended. I started reading, praying, studying, singing and discussing the word and I developed a personal relationship with Jesus that gave me a sense of completeness I had never known. My journey of struggle had ended and my new journey of salvation had just begun and I knew I would have eternal life. The faith community of Spring welcomed me from day one with open

Beverly Holtzman

Toronto Baptist Women celebrates Baptist World Alliance - Women's Department DAY of PRAYER 2.0 Come and plug into the power of prayer with your Baptist sisters in the GTA. We will sing, read, pray, colour, knit, crochet, walk and dance our prayers for . . . global women's issues | every continent l the GTA | our churches | each other (We will use Scripture and prayers prepared for this year's World Day of Prayer by the Baptist World Alliance-Women's Department) Date: Saturday November 21, 2015 Registration: 8:30 a.m. | Program: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. Location: Spring Garden Baptist Church, 112 Spring Garden Avenue, Toronto Registration: $10 (includes lunch) | pay at the door We encourage you to bring a donation towards 2015’s World Day of Prayer projects How to register: Darlene Lucas (darlenelynnlucas@gmail.com) or Renee James (rsejames@gmail.com | 416-651-8967) Free parking in church parking lot | child care provided if you register by November 7, 2015

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For more information contact:

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This is an article by Theo Spear with his personal reflections on Remembrance Day.

Remembrance day On November the 11th at the 11th hour we stand in silence as we remember those who have fought for our country and died in World War 1, World War 2, Korean War and Afghanistan war. This remembrance day also marks a very sad moment in our lives we have all have lost love ones to these deadly wars some are friends or family in these times of sadness we have to look to God and think I am lucky to be alive. If we read the poem In Flanders fields, In Flanders fields the poppies blow Between the crosses, row on row, That mark our place: and in the sky The larks still bravely singing fly Scarce heard amid the guns below. We are the dead: Short days ago, We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow, Loved and were loved: and now we lie In Flanders fields! Take up our quarrel with the foe: To you, from failing hands, we throw The torch: be yours to hold it high If ye break faith with us who die, We shall not sleep, though poppies grow In Flanders fields As well we think of the song Where have all the flowers gone by Peter Paul and Mary it makes us listen and cry as we miss those friends or family member that died to protect our country. Theo Spear 6

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NeighbourLink North York

20th Anniversary Celebration and Benefit Concert Saturday, November 28, 2015 at 2:00 p.m. Spring Garden Baptist Church 112 Spring Garden Avenue (near Yonge and Sheppard Avenues)

Featuring The Salvation Army Heritage Band Stella Chung, Soprano David Graham, Bass and Others Refreshments and Silent Auction to follow Free Will Offering For Information call: 416 221 8283 or 416 225 4986 Come and join us for an afternoon of great music and celebration

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As I sit in the well. I can feel the snowflakes falling. That bitter cold is setting into my bones. I’m feeling defeated. I’ve long since forgotten what hope means. I’ve bypassed anger, loneliness, desperation, and a feeling of abandoment is burrowing deeper than I should allow it. I need to hold on to faith but even that is fading fast. Is it well with my soul? As I sit, my mind wanders, will I ever see the light again or the warmth of the sun or a friend or a smile or the peace of a river? Is it well with my soul? I feel like I have been in this well for an eternity, the darkness has become a safe companion. If I ever see the Light again, will I know what it looks like or will death feel closer, a welcomed friend? Is it well with my soul? Something is moving above me I notice I have no emotion for this thought, that idea saddens me. I have been down here a long time to get to this point. What would it mean to think there is something there? Hope, joy, renewal, opportunity, all things you should see in a garden with colours that would blow your mind and that perhaps the Light had planted and attended to them and smells that would would put a smile on the hardest of hearts. Is it well with my soul? I don’t know how, but I know a veil has been removed from the well. And even though it is dark inside, I feel green flourishing on the edges of the well as if someone has finally seen my helplessness and food is on the way. Is it well with my soul? It is well with my soul! What will the food look like? The questions I want to ask range in the hundreds. Deep down, I can feel the hunger. I forgot what that was like. Why would I hope for something I never saw coming? But, this is different there is a certain power authority that is guiding this path. Corinne Sutton-Smith

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Joanna James

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Recomendations From The Resource Centre

Spring Garden’s online library catalog can be accessed at springgardenchurch.ca/library

If you know of books or DVDs that you’d like to recommend to the resource centre, please contact Karen Cassel karen.cassel@bell.net

Books Why Believe the Bible? By John MacArthur Do we really believe that ancient texts such as the Bible have meaning for us today? How can we get the most from God’s Word? In Why Believe the Bible? Esteemed Bible teacher John MacArthur examines these and other questions regarding the authority, infallibility, and trustworthiness of the Word of God. Whether you are a new Christian or just want to brush up on some of the basic truths of Scripture, this book will give you confidence in the power of God’s Word to transform your life . . . and show you that the Bible does make a difference! This book includes a Bible reading plan, a new preface, and helpful tools and resources for studying the Bible.

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Warrior Chicks: Rising Strong When Life Wants to Take You Down, by Holly Wagner In this inspiring call to arms against victimhood, Holly Wagner challenges women to enlist as Warrior Chicks. She shows women that they are beautiful just the way they are, they are destined to be overcomers in this life, and the battle is already won for us. She shares the secrets of being equipped to fight the good fight and do more than just survive. As one who has battled many things in her life, including breast cancer, Holly shows how you can be either a casualty of the pain or a warrior who overcomes.

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Longing for More: Daily Reflections on Finding God in the Rhythms of Life, by Timothy Willard

DVD

What do you hear--questions of trust, longing, disappointment, courage, and love? How can we get the most from God’s Word? In Longing for More, Timothy Willard invites us to think and pray through our deepest needs, and explores how the ebb and flow of life can be used for God’s glory. Creatively organized in 52 chapters that follow the four seasons of the year, the daily readings point the way to a richer spiritual life.

Despite what Adam says, the troubled middleschooler is not “fine”. Not only has he refused to cut his hair in the two years since the death of his mother and sister, but he’s also dealing with a depressed dad who prefers to drink his sorrows away. Adam finds support from friends and an open-minded priest who counsels kids on the basketball court, but he faces potential trouble from an enemy, Jerry, who’s determined to cut Adam’s hair before he enters high school next year. Adam receives help from some unlikely allies, discovering inner strength with the support of his community along the way. Set in a small, southern California beach town, Clipping Adam is proof of the notion that with the help of family and friends, one can always find his way back home.

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Clipping Adam

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Discipleship Ministries in November Nazli Bashiri is stepping down this month as our Children’s Ministry Intern as she has found a full-time job in her field. We are so thankful for her gifts and the ways in which she served us this year. She has done an amazing job and we will miss her in this capacity. The good news is that she will continue to be part of our community! After much thought and prayer, we have decided to combine the two jobs of Children and Youth Intern to the role of an assistant position. Jeremy Ranasinghe will be our new Discpleship Ministries Assistant. We felt that this reflects better the role Jeremy would play in executing our discipleship model. We have also recruited two new volunteer interns for this semester named Samantha Steele and Alyssa Oliver. We are excited that they have joined us for this season and look forward to their presence in our community. (See pg. 25-26 for a brief introduction to Sam and Alyssa)

Children’s Ministry I read an article this week about the importance of faith formation at home. Here’s a quote from a writer in the article. “Effective religious socialization comes about through embedded practices; that is, through specific, deliberate religious activities that are firmly intertwined with the daily habits of family routines, of eating and sleeping, of having conversations, of adorning spaces in which people live, of celebrating the holidays, and of being part of a community. Compared with these practices, the formal teachings of religious leaders often pale in significance. Yet when such practices are present, formal teachings also become more important.” (Wuthnow)

come up in his research. I found them to be a helpful reminder of the importance of being intentional in the daily rhythms we create for ourselves and our family. Here’s the list. - eating together, especially the power of Sunday meals and holidays; - praying: bedtime rituals and prayer, grace before meals - having family conversations; - displaying sacred objects and religious images, especially the Bible; - celebrating holidays; - providing moral instruction; and - engaging in family devotions and reading the Bible. Do you have any of these activities as part of your family life? Is this a question of discussion that you can have as parents and caregivers to think about how to engage in faith formation at home?

Youth Ministry November 6th – Community Service Project We will be meeting at the church building to work on helping the people around us. This event will be geared towards helping families in need as Christmas time approaches. More info will be sent out via Email. November 20th – Lazer Maze (Laser Tag) We will be heading to DP Lazer Maze for a fun evening playing a couple stimulating games of laser tag. Cost:$15 – Includes food, 2 games of laser tag, rides to and from the event venue.

He goes on to list some of the common activities that consistently 16

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Between the Testaments: The People of Israel and the coming of Alexander the Great and Hellenism

In the previous two editions of Delve, we have considered the importance of the law for the people of Israel and how disobedience to God’s commands led to their exile in Babylon. Last time we focused on the way in which God brought his people back from exile, using Zerubbabel as governor, Joshua as priest, Ezra as scribe and priest, and Nehemiah as rebuilder of Jerusalem’s walls. We ended last time discussing the dual leadership of the governor and the high priest, which took us to a date of approximately 445 BC. We know little about what happened in the intervening 300 years between Nehemiah’s leadership and the revolt led by Mattathias and his sons, known as the Maccabean Revolt (c. 167 BC). The biblical text, however, offers us one tenuous link to this period. In Nehemiah 12:10–11, we find a list of the descendants of the high priest Joshua: “And Jeshua (= Joshua) was the father of Joiakim, Joiakim the father of Eliashib, Eliashib the father of Joiada,  Joiada the father of Jonathan, and Jonathan the father of Jaddua.”A similar list can be found in the writings of the Jewish historian Josephus, who wrote in Rome in the late first century AD. Josephus seems to be drawing on this list of high priests from Nehemiah 12:10–11, 18

when he recounts a story about the high priest John (= Jonathan), who was the grandson of Eliashib and son of Judas (= Joiada) (Josephus, Jewish Antiquities 11.297). According to Josephus, John was high priest during the reign of Artaxerxes and he says that it was this Artaxerxes (= Ahasuerus) who was the Persian king to whom Esther was married (Jewish Antiquities 11.184–296; Esther 1:1). One of Artaxerxes’s generals whose name was Bagoses was friends with Joshua, the brother of the high priest John. Bagoses told Joshua that he would make it possible for him to become high priest. Because of this promise, Joshua argued with his brother John in the temple. Josephus states: “[Joshua] quarreled with John in the temple, and so provoked his brother, that in his anger his brother slew him. Now it was a horrible thing for John, when he was high priest, to perpetrate so great a crime, and so much the more horrible, that there never was so cruel and impious a thing done, neither by the Greeks nor Barbarians.” It was quite “horrible” that the high priest would kill anyone, let alone his own brother and that the location of the murder would be in the temple. Josephus continues and says that God did not leave this murder unpunished. Bagoses, in reaction to the death of his friend, made the Jewish people slaves for 7 years, and he also entered the temple and defiled it, stating that he was purer than his friend who was killed in the temple. By implication, Bagoses underlines how much purer he is than the high priest John who committed the murder. About this time Alexander the Great became the ruler of Greece and began his conquest of the known world. Alexander’s defeat of the Persian king Darius III at Issus in 333 BC was the turning point between empires. The Persian empire would never recover, and Alexander would continue his military campaign throughout the East, spreading Greek language, ideas, and culture. Following the battle at Issus, Darius retreated to Persia, and Alexander conquered the cities of Damascus and Sidon. When Alexander began to besiege Tyre, he sent a letter to the high priest in Jerusalem asking for food and supplies. Josephus names Jaddua as the high priest to whom the letter was written, and this may have been the same Jaddua mentioned in Nehemiah 12:11. If so, it would mean that this Jaddua was the 19


son of John who murdered his brother in the temple. While it would require long lives of Jaddua and his ancestors for this to be the same figure mentioned in Nehemiah 12:11, Josephus seems to understand him to be the same Jaddua (see Jewish Antiquities, 11.317–47). Because Jaddua had a treaty with Darius the Persian king, he did not send the food and supplies as Alexander had requested. Jaddua was unwillingly to change allegiance to Alexander while Darius was still alive. Josephus says that Jaddua’s negative response made Alexander angry, and Alexander was determined to go to Jerusalem and make an example of Jaddua and the Jewish people by forcing them to switch loyalties. After Alexander took the cities of Tyre and then Gaza, he made his way to Jerusalem. While Alexander was on his way, Jaddua became fearful of the destruction Alexander might carry out on Jerusalem and its people. He and the people prayed and offered sacrifices. God responded to Jaddua in a dream and told him to take courage. In response to the dream, Jaddua led the people and the priests out of the city to meet Alexander and his army. The priests were dressed in their priestly garments, and the people were all dressed in white. When Alexander saw the priests and the people dressed in this way, “he approached alone and prostrated himself before the Name and first greeted the high priest” (Jewish Antiquities 11.331). “The Name” that Alexander bowed down to was the name of the Lord which was inscribed on a gold plate at the front of the high priest’s headdress. Alexander’s leaders were appalled that he would bow before the leader of another nation, and they thought he had gone crazy. Alexander responded, “It was not before him that I prostrated myself but the God of whom he has the honour to be high priest, for it was he whom I saw in my sleep dressed as he is now, when I was at Dium in Macedonia, and, as I was considering with myself how I might become master of Asia, he urged me not to hesitate but to cross over confidently, for he himself would lead my army and give over to me the empire of the Persians” (Jewish Antiquities 11.333–334). After Alexander gave this answer to his leaders, he went with Jaddua and the people into the city and offered sacrifices to God at the 20

temple “under the direction of the high priest.” The priests showed Alexander the book of Daniel, and Alexander believed he was the one prophesied about who would defeat the Persians (Jewish Antiquities 11.337). Josephus recounts that this experience made Alexander joyful, and he told the people to ask for any gifts. The high priest Jaddua requested that they be able to keep their own laws (in other words worship God as he had commanded) and be exempt from tribute in the seventh year. Alexander granted these requests, which highlight a concern for the correct observance of the law. Josephus’s accounts reveal a number of things about the Jewish people during the early part of the Second Temple period. First, there is no political ruler of the Jews other than the high priest. Not only that, but in the case of Jaddua, the high priest is presented as the one communicating with the leaders of the nations.1 Second, these other nations who rule Israel claim some authority in the naming of the high priest. This was especially the case with John and his brother Joshua (= Jesus) and in another story Josephus recounts but unrelated here (see Jewish Antiquities 11.306–312). The high priesthood, while remaining in the family, became a position that could be obtained by the blessing of the non-Jewish ruler. Within the Old Testament, the office of high priest seems to be primarily hereditary through the descendants or Aaron and Zadok, but in a context without political stability and national sovereignty, the religious leadership of the people appears to become a position that is no longer purely hereditary. Alexander the Great finally defeated Darius at Babylon in 330 BC and went on to India. He died in 323 BC having created an empire that stretched from Greece to the Indus River. Upon his death, the empire was divided among his generals, but Alexander’s merging of Greek culture with that of the East, his founding of many Greek cities, and the spread of the Greek language had lasting effects on the Jewish people. The way the Jewish people related to this Hellenized world led to tensions between them, between those who saw Hellenization as something to be embraced and those who saw accommodation to it as disobedience to the Law. Ben Reynolds 21


FIFTH ANNUAL EVA’S COMMUNITY CELEBRATE & SKATE Hello Friends, Neighbours and Fellow Willowdalites! It is with immense pleasure that the Willowdale Collaboration Network is announcing our FIFTH ANNUAL EVA’S COMMUNITY CELEBRATE & SKATE! The event’s 3 components: 1. Raise money for ONE HUNDRED AND TWENTY-FIVE holiday gift bags through Light Patrol’s “Operation: Good Thing” program ($25/bag), to give to all the youth at all three homeless shelters with Eva’s Initiatives (two of which are located here in Willowdale). These bags will be distributed by Eva’s staff ON CHRISTMAS DAY to all 125 youth in the three shelters. 2. Assemble all 125 holiday gift bags and create personalized holiday greeting cards in partnership with Northview Heights Secondary School’s HMST Program and Church In Toronto on December 12th.

and HELPING US ASSEMBLE THE GIFT BAGS and JOINING US TO CELEBRATE AND SKATE WITH HOMELESS YOUTH We are truly excited to set our aim on providing gift bags to all three shelters, to the 125 youth who are being cared for and supported by the phenomenal staff and volunteers with Eva’s Initiatives. Let’s help make this holiday season a little brighter for some of Toronto’s most vulnerable and precious young people. If you have any questions then please don’t hesitate to contact me. (jjames@yugta.ca) Collaborating with you to bring hope to our young people this Christmas and holiday season, Jesse James

3. Celebrate and Skate with Eva’s youth and other Willowdale Community members at Mel Lastman Square in partnership with Pizza Pizza, Starbucks, Loblaws, the City of Toronto and Play It Again Sports on December 17th. ​ ou can help by: Y SPONSORING GIFT BAGS 22

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Elders

Leadership at Spring Garden Pastoral Team Gene Tempelmeyer, Pastor Ext. 222 genetemp@springgardenchurch.ca Greg Kay, Worship and Mission Pastor Ext. 224 gregkay@springgardenchurch.ca Margaret Sutton, Pastoral Care/Seniors Ext. 226 margaretsutton@springgardenchurch.ca Sam Lee, Pastor of Discipleship, Ext. 227 samlee@springgardenchurch.ca Suzanna Lai, Church Office and Communications Manager Ext. 221 suzanna@springgardenchurch.ca Jeremy Ranasinghe, Discpleship Ministries Assistant jeremy.ranasinghe@springgardenchurch.ca

Deacons Anne Barron - Missions and Worship anne.barron020@sympatico.ca Marion Cameron - Membership and Board Secretary marion.cameron@sympatico.ca Mary Ellen Hopkins - Finance mehopkins@sympatico.ca Koon Wah Leung - Discipleship Ministries koonwah@lycos.com Gonzalo Librado - Adult Ministries gonzalo.librado@sgbc.ca Derek Prinsloo - Chair derek.prinsloo@sgbc.ca Judy Tranter - Pastoral Care judytranterassociates@gmail.com Jim Turner - Property jim.turner@sgbc.ca

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416.724.9329 416.491.8542 905.731.0492 416.225.7092 416.229.2695 647.349.4610 416.229.0494 416.512.1360

Garth Barron garthbarron@sympatico.ca Darlene Boyd darlene.boyd@gmail.com Cindie Chaise cindie.chaise@sgbc.ca Jennifer Moore jmofromto@gmail.com Barrie Porter barriep91@gmail.com Corinne Sutton-Smith blestfoods@aol.com

416.724.9329 416.385.2483 647.345.2476 416.786.8727 416.829.4210 416.615.1763

Spring Garden Church 112 Spring Garden Ave. Toronto ON M2N3G3

T 416.223.4593 F 416.223.6126 www.springgardenchurch.ca office@springgardenchurch.ca

Prayer Line 416.223.4038

Community Corner

Life around Spring Garden

Discipleship Ministries Interns My name is Alyssa Oliver. I attend Tyndale University College and Seminary. I am getting my Bachelor of Arts Degree in Biblical Studies and Theology with a minor in Youth Ministry. I enjoy painting, coffee, self-expression and hanging out with friends. The reason that I am at Tyndale studying the Bible is because I enjoy learning what God’s word is truly saying. What I hope to do with my degree in the future is work alongside young 25


people. Getting to know them in a real way is something that I am passionate about and look forward to experiencing in the future. I am thankful for God and his redeeming love that he pours out onto all who accept, and that is the main reason that I am where I am today. Samantha Steele was raised and lives in Aurora with her father Scott, mother Janice and younger brother Matthew. She went through the French immersion program and graduated from Aurora High School the past June with a bilingual diploma. Sam is now living on residence at Tyndale University where she is pursuing her undergraduate in Business Administration. She enjoys playing soccer and has a second-degree black belt in karate. She has trained in the martial arts for over eight years, and taught as an instructor at the school for three years. Sam also enjoys music; she has played piano on the worship team at her church and is also attempting to learn the guitar.

What’s Happening

Life in Spring Garden

Weekly Tuesdays 2:00 pm - Pastoral Team meeting 7:00 pm - ESL Café - Groove Dance Group Wednesdays 10:00 am - Refresh Women’s Bible Study Thursdays 12:00 pm - Adult Bible Class Sundays 9:00 am - Morning Bible Study: meeting room 26

- ESL Bible study: basement at the southwest entrance 10:00 am - Sunday Morning Worship (communion on the first Sunday of the month) 1:00 pm - Young Adult Life Group Sunday. Lunch together first and then the gathering at 1pm. If you would like to receive a weekly email update on what’s happening in Spring Garden, please visit the SGC website (www.springgardenchurch.ca) and add your email at the bottom of our home page to subscribe to our weekly update

This Month

Saturday Nov 21st - 9:00am-3:00pm, Toronto Baptist Women Day of Prayer - 2:00pm, Spring Garden Scrabble Group. The group is being held at an alternative location this month. Please contact Patty Perri (pattiperry@rogers.com) for location details.

Advent and Christmas dates

Sunday Dec 6 @10:00-11:30 am: Intergenerational Advent Celebration, Communion and Potluck (worship gathering where all ages lead and engage in worship, followed by a potluck meal together--so bring your favorite peanut free food to share!) Wednesday Dec 9: Deadline for donations in support of “Operation Good Thing’s” gift bags for underhoused youth. Bags are $25 each. Contact Jesse James to make a donation jjames@yugta.ca Thursday Dec 17 @6:30-8:30pm: Celebrate and Skate with youth from Eva’s Satellite (a shelter for underhoused youth) at Mel Lastman Square Sunday Dec 20 @6:30-8:00 pm: Light of the World (fun evening of singing and desserts designed as a safe invite for friends, neighbours, family, etc) Thursday Dec 24 @7:00-8:00 pm: Christmas Eve Candlelight Worship (reflective Christmas worship through singing and scripture) 27


Our Values We believe in a humble God who came not to be served, but to serve. Therefore we engage in sacrificial and active service to those around us. We strive to be good stewards of God’s gifts and talents by serving one another in humility. We aspire to regard others as higher than ourselves, which liberates us to creatively take risks in serving others for God’s glory. We believe in a God of grace who came to save the world, not to condemn it. Therefore, as we are continuously receiving the gift of God’s grace, we seek to grow in that grace and extend it to others. We strive to define ourselves by what we are for, not what we are against. We believe in a God who knows us, and who desires to be known. Therefore we embrace a journey of faith that requires us to constantly strive for a personal, intimate and transformative knowledge of God. We strive to be led by God’s Spirit in supporting and encouraging one another in working out our faith. We believe in a creative God. Therefore we are open to expressing our faith in new and creative ways that reflect the beauty and complexity of our creator. We are called to use our creative gifts in worship and service as we engage with our world. We take joy in the diversity of gifts that allow us to delight God and participate in His ongoing story. We believe in a triune, relational God who calls us to come together as a diverse community of believers. Therefore, we want to walk together, supporting one another physically, emotionally and spiritually. We strive to be a welcoming, inclusive family that goes through the joys and the trials of life together, acknowledging that God uses this community to deepen and mature our faith. We believe in a God who loves this broken world and wants to reconcile us to Himself. Therefore we are commissioned by Christ to go out into the world, meeting the holistic needs of the local and global community. God calls us to participate in a redemptive work that he has already initiated; in humility, we will partner with others to work alongside and chase after Him. We believe in a God who is our center. Therefore where we are on the journey is less important than that we are moving towards a deeper relationship with Christ. We believe and participate in God’s redemptive work in all people, which gives us the freedom to come as we are, and to accept others as they are. We each are on a unique journey to become who God has created us to be. 28

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