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November 2017

An

Intersection

Of

Faith

And Life

Delve

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Features Musings: Advent Means Mission Finding My Story

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Departments Financial Update SGC Discipleship Ministries Resource Centre

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Information Contact Information Community Corner Calendar

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Cover: Jesse James Design: Clement Lee Contributors: Marion Cameron Karen Cassel Jeremy Ranasinghe Gene Tempelmeyer

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

Copy Editors: Karen Cassel Greg Kay Michelle Li Gene Tempelmeyer 3


Musings: Advent Means Mission by Gene Tempelmeyer

Level One: Operation Good Thing Bags – For a number of years we have worked with Youth Unlimited to provide holiday gift bags to homeless youth. These gift bags provide necessary hygiene items and personalized holiday cards to youth living in both Eva's Initiatives Youth Homeless Shelters here in Willowdale. You can provide a bag for one person by making a $28 donation online at willowdaleoutreach.yugta.ca. Most of us have someone on their Christmas list who is hard to buy for. I have found that a great gift for these hard-to- buy-for people is helping someone else in their honour. This is much more meaningful than a new pair of socks or a gift card! An Operation Good Thing bag makes an excellent gift. This Level One project provides an opportunity to make a one-time donation.

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hristmas celebrates one of the central beliefs of our faith: in Jesus, God came to us in human flesh. This “coming” of Jesus was also a “going out” from the right hand of the Father. It provides the ultimate example of leaving one’s comfort zone. Each Christmas we select a handful of projects we encourage you to support as a way of following Jesus by leaving the comfort of the church to go out into God’s mission in the world. Through us God continues to come to people in our human flesh. Our Christmas mission projects are selected to offer us opportunities for stepping beyond our comfort zone at a level that provides each of us with a reasonable challenge to follow Jesus into a deeper level of discipleship. Some require money. Some do not. The more connection we make with people different from ourselves, the more we learn and the more adventure we experience. These opportunities contain different levels of contact. Consider taking your discipleship to the next level by moving up one level of connection from your present comfort zone. 4

Level Two: Make your own Advent Box – Some of us did this last year and found it a great way to focus on the meaning of Advent. Remember the Advent calendars that open a window to a piece of chocolate or a small gift? This is an especially good tradition for children to help them count down the days to Christmas. But what if instead of taking something OUT of an Advent calendar we put something INTO an Advent box? Following the example of “Good King Wenceslas”, each day of Advent (which begins on Dec. 3 this year) we end our family dinner by reading a short passage, praying for people who need help, and placing a nonperishable food item from our own kitchen cupboard into our Advent Box. We will provide a resource for this in late November. Then on Sunday, Dec. 24, we will bring our Advent boxes to worship and place them on the platform as a gift to Jesus in His frequent disguise as one of the poor and needy. If you are not able to attend on Christmas Eve, you may bring your box in the next time you are able to attend and we will make sure it gets to someone who needs it. One of the benefits of this activity is that foodbanks report generous donations in December but experience a falloff in 5


donations in January. Arriving in early January, our Advent boxes help keep people fed in the new year. This Level Two project provides a hands-on opportunity to experience giving, connected to four weeks of spiritual and devotional life for an individual or a family. Level Three – Angel Tree Christmas – This is the third year we will partner with Prison Fellowship to provide Christmas gifts for kids whose parents are incarcerated. You will have an opportunity to sign up to purchase gifts on behalf of an inmate. You will then receive the name of the child(ren), a card signed by the inmate to go on the gift, and an indication of what the inmate would like to give their child. You will also be given contact information for the child(ren)’s care-giver to arrange delivery of the gift. Gifts are $30 for each child. For those with children at home, this is a great experience to involve our own kids in a mission activity. Get them to help select and wrap the present and take them along to deliver it. There is nothing that develops a discipleship mindset more effectively than involving people of any age in a mission connection like this. This Level Three project provides a face-to- face opportunity to show a hurting family God’s care. This also makes an excellent gift for that person who probably doesn’t need a new pair of socks.

I have two adult children of whom I am quite proud. If I could go back and do one thing differently in the formation of their faith and spiritual experience, I would, beginning at a very early age, take them along with me in personal encounters with people who need to see human flesh on God’s love and care. I would show them how to talk safely with people who live rough. I would try to give them opportunities to converse with millionaires and a beggars to learn that there really is not much difference between the two. Whatever our age, the more we connect with people who are different from us, the more we realize they are not nearly as different as we first thought. Whatever our age, we grow by engaging in new experiences that carry us out of our present comfort zone into a broader appreciation for everyone who shares our planet. Jesus joins us. He welcomes us in order to send us. He sends us in order to welcome us. This is what advent is about.

Level Three – All Ages Skating and Pizza Party at Mel Lastman Square – On Sunday, December 21, we are invited to join Jesse James (Youth Unlimited Willowdale Outreach) and the youth at Eva’s Initiaves Willowdale Youth Homeless Shelters for a party. The party is from 6:30 – 8:00 PM. All you need to do is show up and be reasonably friendly. Again, this is a great experience for kids, too. This Level Three project provides a face-to- face opportunity to meet, chat with, and show God’s care to a young person who has nowhere to live other than the shelter of a bridge or the shelter Eva’s Initiatives provides. To follow Jesus is to be part of God’s mission in the world. 6

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Finding My Story by Gene Tempelmeyer

“Finding My Story” is an eight week opportunity to see how it all fits together with places in the story exactly shaped like you and me. In each session we will hear part of the Bible story, have an exercise for self-reflection, and enjoy a group discussion. Beginning October 22, our Sunday morning worship will cover the content of “Finding My Story.” At the conclusion of this series you might want to open your home to share this experience with friends who have not yet found themselves in God’s story. Gene will happily make himself available to facilitate this. For the group discussion you may want to join a small group meeting over lunch here at Spring Garden, take materials home to do together as a family and/or with friends, or hold this discussion as part of your regular life group. Here are the topics that we are covering:

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hy did it happen to me? Am I actually getting anywhere in life? Is there any meaning or purpose to the things I’ve been through? How do I make sense of my life? We are humans with our own story sharing in common a larger human story. The joys, heartbreaks, successes, and wounds of our own unique story point us to an ancient story of goodness, brokenness, redemption, and restoration. This ancient story reveals how our story might come to a happy ending. The Bible is the story of a community through whom God has revealed himself to the world. As the history of this community turns and twists, the understanding of God evolves and matures. Our own story takes remarkably similar turns and twists to that ancient community. By comparing our story to the Bible story we can see how our collection of unique experiences is able to open our eyes to the beautiful and great thing God is doing with the human race. 8

Sunday, Oct, 22 Session 1: Where Do I Fit? Genesis 1:26-30 Sunday, Oct. 29 Session 2: Why Is It All So Screwed Up? Genesis 3:8-33, 16-19 Sunday, Nov. 5 Session 3: What Is My “Normal”? Genesis 12:1-7a Sunday, Nov. 12 Session 4: Is God a National Mascot? Joshua 10:28-30, 40-42 Sunday, Nov. 19 Session 5: Is God a Hanging Judge? Deuteronomy 28:15-20 9


Sunday, Nov. 26 Session 6: Who Was Jesus? Luke 4:16-20 Sunday, Dec. 3 Intergenerational Advent Celebration

Spring Garden Baptist Church Monthly Financial Update For: September 30, 2017

Sunday, Dec. 10 Session 7: Are We Still Waiting for a Messiah? Revelation 21:1-6 Sunday, Dec. 17 Session 8: What is My Story? Acts 2:36-40

/Week

2017 Budget

Year To Date For 9 Months - September, 2017 Donations & Other Income Expenses Cash Shortfall to Actual Expenses Cash Shortfall to Budget

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$560,600

Actual

$356,449 (390,490) (34,041)

$10,780

Budget

$420,450 (420,450)

(64,001)

UPDATE TO OCTOBER 22nd There are only 9 Sundays remaining in 2017. In order to meet our budget, our offerings need to average $16,000 each week. If you are not able to attend Spring Garden but would still like to make a donation, you can 1. Send an etransfer to marion.cameron@sgbc.ca. Be sure to send a separate email with the etransfer password in it. 2. Donate online through Canada Helps. There is a link at springgardenchurch.ca/giving. PLEASE GIVE PRAYERFUL CONSIDERATION AS TO HOW YOU CAN FINANCIALLY SUPPORT SPRING GARDEN’S MINISTRIES 11


Partnering with Families

SGC Discipleship Ministries

Good Relationships Are All in the Family by Catherine Caruso

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lot can happen during a life—career changes, marriages, divorces, births, deaths, not to mention all the small stuff in between—but childhood lays an important foundation that can last a lifetime. A long-running study published in September 2016 in Psychological Science found that men who grew up in warmer, more nurturing family environments had stronger relationships as older adults. The research is a continuation of Harvard University's Study of Adult Development, a longitudinal study of adult health and well-being that has spanned almost eight decades. At its outset in 1938, researchers enrolled male Harvard students and inner-city Boston teens and used lengthy interviews to rate the quality of the boys' family environments. Different researchers then followed up with the men in midlife to assess how successfully they were able to manage negative emotions. In the most recent study, coauthors Robert Waldinger, a psychiatrist at Harvard Medical School, and Marc Schulz, a psychologist at Bryn Mawr College, conducted in-depth interviews with the men, now in their 80s, to determine their level of attachment to their partners. Waldinger and Schulz determined that regardless of socioeconomic standing the men raised in warmer family environments used healthier strategies to manage their negative emotions in midlife and were also more securely attached to their partners late in life. These results suggest our childhood environment affects our

relationships not only into early adulthood but for the rest of our life. Chris Fraley, a psychologist at the University of Illinois at UrbanaChampaign who studies attachment but was not involved in the present study, points out that so much can happen between childhood and old age, from financial hardship to illness to divorce. “The fact that the authors found such an association is remarkable,” he says, “and raises a number of questions about the factors that explain why it exists.” For Schulz, the findings highlight the need for services such as family leave that support parents and allow them to create better family environments. He also stresses the importance of good social services that can intervene when children end up in poor or unsafe family settings. “I think the take-home [message] is that kids may not remember specific events, particularly early in their life,” Schulz says, “but the accumulation of loving, nurturing family environments really has an impact over a long period.” Waldinger and Schulz also emphasize that there are many ways to overcome having a less than idyllic childhood, such as actively working on developing warmer, more stable relationships as an adult or learning how to use healthier strategies to deal with negative emotions. “The bottom line,” Waldinger says, “is that how we take care of children is just so vitally important.” - Taken from Scientific America (https://www.scientificamerican.com/ article/good-relationships-are-all-in-the-family/)

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Here are some upcoming events for you to save the date!

Life Groups:

Faith at the Table

We will have our youth life group meetings on November 10th . For more information, please speak to Sam or Jeremy.

There will be two workshops offered each day (one for parents/ guardians and one for children). January 28th – “Practicing faith at home” April 15th – “Let’s talk about Sex”

Date Night

Youth Events:

November 5th -Go- Karts and Mini Golf - We will be meeting after worship on Sunday November 5th for some fun on the Go-Kart track as well as a few holes of mini golf. 

March 3rd – 5pm-9pm: Babysitting offered at the church for $5 per Kid

Time: 12:00pm-3:00pm Cost: $15

Spring Garden Summer Camp 2018

November 17th - Board Games Night: Spring Garden is hosting a Board games night and everyone is invited! For more information contact Esther (esther.penner@sgbc.ca). More information to come!

July 30th – August 3rd August 7th – 10th

SGC Camping Trip 2018 July 20th – 22nd

Winter Youth Retreats

Avalanche – January 19th – 21st Blizzard – February 9th – 11th

SGC: Youth Sunday Morning Worship Gatherings:

November 5th , 12th , 19th - We will be having regular worship gatherings for youth in grades 6-12. Children and youth will continue their programs and worship gathering in their classrooms following the children’s blessing. Youth will meet in the youth lounge. **Youth are encouraged to join and serve in the upstairs worship gathering on November 26 th ** 14

Staying Updated

To stay up to date on what is happening for your youth, please visit our google calendar which has all our planned events. http://tiny.cc/springyouth


Painting Workshop 2: Using Colour and Edges

In his spare time Gene Tempelmeyer, our Lead Pastor, works as an artist. A number of Spring Gardeners have expressed an interest in learning to paint or learning to paint better. Gene is going to offer a series of art classes this fall. Each class will be open to 18 participants on a first-to-sign-up basis. Seven of these spaces, however, will be reserved for people who are not presently part of a church. (Don’t worry, your friends won’t be preached at!) This is to help us build relational connections to our wider community.

Workshop 2: Using Colour and Edges You probably want to have at least a little painting experience to get the greatest benefit from this class. Gene will give you an overview of how to use colour, how to make things recede into the background, when to have a hard edge between shapes and when to let one thing blend into another. 16

Location: Spring Garden Church, Multi-Purpose Room. Date: Sat, Nov 18, 2017 Time: 9:00 am – 3:00 pm. Lunch: Bring a bag lunch or walk to take-out on Yonge Street. Age: The class is designed at an Adult level. All ages are welcome, and ability to work at something for several hours is required. Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult. Cost: $30 per person to cover the cost of materials. Materials provided for the day include: brushes, painting knives, a palette, paint, painting mediums, and a canvas (16” x 20”). Participants need to bring: paper towels and a plastic container for water to rinse brushes: an empty container of dishwashing or laundry detergent pods is ideal. Wear clothes you won’t mind getting paint on. We will be using acrylic paint. You will also be painting from your own reference photograph – please bring 3 or 4 photos and Gene will help you select the most paintable. (Please note that portraits, painting from imagination, or copying another painting are extremely difficult without considerable skill with tools and materials.)


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

Recomendations From The Resource Centre All Saints: the surprising true story of how refuges from Burma brought life to a dying church, by Michael Spurlock and Jeanette Windle

Newly ordained, Michael Spurlock's first assignment is to pastor All Saints, a struggling church with twenty-five devoted members and a mortgage well beyond its means. The best option may be to close the church rather than watch it wither any further. But when All Saints hesitantly risks welcoming a community of Karen refugees from Burma-former farmers scrambling for a fresh start in America--Michael feels they may be called to an improbable new mission. Michael must choose between closing the church and selling the property-- or listening to a still, small voice challenging the people of All Saints to risk it all and provide much-needed hope to their new community. Together, they risk everything to plant seeds for a future that might just save them all.

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Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus, a devout Muslim encounters Christianity, by Nabeel Qureshi Providing an intimate window into a loving Muslim home, Qureshi shares how he developed a passion for Islam before discovering, almost against his will, evidence that Jesus rose from the dead and claimed to be God. Unable to deny the arguments but not wanting to deny his family, Qureshi struggled with an inner turmoil that will challenge Christians, Muslims, and all those who are interested in the world’s greatest religions. Engaging and thought-provoking, Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus tells a powerful story of the clash between Islam and Christianity in one man’s heart and of the peace he eventually found in Jesus.

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Where we Belong, by Lynn Austin In the city of Chicago in 1892, the rules for Victorian women are strict, their roles limited. But sisters Rebecca and Flora Hawes are not typical Victorian ladies. Their love of adventure and their desire to use their Godgiven talents has brought them to the Sinai Desert-- and into a sandstorm. Accompanied by Soren Petersen, their somber young butler, and Kate Rafferty, a street urchin who is learning to be their ladies' maid, the two women are on a quest to find an important biblical manuscript. As the journey becomes more dangerous and uncertain, the four travelers sift through memories of their past, recalling the events that shaped them and the circumstances that brought them to this time and place. Loosely based on the true story of “The Sisters of Sinai”.

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Bounce: Learning to thrive through loss, tragedy, and heartache, by Aaron Früh. Whether due to the loss of a job, home, or family member, the pressures of stress, or even feeling the weight of the world's problems on our shoulders, it's easy to get knocked down flat in life. And when that happens, we have two choices: we can give in to our difficult circumstances by embracing our feelings of resentment, disappointment, indecisiveness, and self-pity. Or we can learn how to bounce back stronger, wiser, and happier than before. Drawing on his own painful experience of losing his father as a boy and facing the recent economic upheaval, Früh shares biblical insights and practical strategies for building our resilience so that we can experience loss not as a monster that comes to steal our joy but as a mentor that comes to form our character. He gives readers hope that the painful season they are going through is not the end-- it is just the beginning of a brighter season to come. 21


Matthew House Toronto Volunteer Placement Opportunity House Managers at New Youth Transition House www.matthewhouse.ca

Matthew House is a nationally recognized leader in welcoming, assisting and resettling newly arrived refugee claimants who would otherwise be homeless. In addition to our main reception house, we have two transition homes where particularly vulnerable residents, such as unaccompanied teens or single mothers, may stay and receive longer- term support. Since opening in 1998, Matthew House has assisted over 1,500 refugee claimants from 100 nations. We welcome all refugees regardless of their race, religion, sexual orientation or political opinion and strive to make Matthew House a place where the dignity and hope of refugees are restored. To learn more visit www.matthewhouse.ca Through generous donation and partnership with C3 we have established a fourth home which will be a Transitional House for vulnerable unaccompanied minors, on St. Clarens Avenue. We are looking for volunteers* as House Parents/Mangers for this role. Role and Time Commitment: The house managers live in the home and provide general daily supervision to ensure the house runs smoothly and the resident’s core needs are met effectively. The House Parents can work or study, but are expected to provide community support for our refugee youth. *This position is ideally suited for a couple who have a heart for supporting refugee youth who are adjusting to their new life in Canada Commitment Length: Minimum One year from starting date Qualifications: • A person of faith with a heart for vulnerable people and for

cross-cultural service • Committed to uphold Matthew House’s core values and standards • Reliable, responsible, mature, very flexible, able to deal confidently with unexpected events • Excellent relational/cross cultural communication skills an asset • Comfortable living in a communal setting where only a bedroom is private and all other areas including washroom are shared Key Responsibilities: • Monitor residents’ wellbeing and meet regularly with Operations Manager to report any concerns • Spend time with residents in order to know what is currently happening with them and how they can best be supported in their social and cultural adaptation to Canada • Cooperate with Operations Manager in helping residents reach their goals (where applicable) • Oversee the well-being of the home and home environment including health and hygiene standards • Ensure the overall daily security of the home • Ensure any bills or important mail is appropriately distributed • Provide informal tutoring/teaching to residents in line with personal areas of expertise • Conduct bi-weekly House Group activities to enhance healthy community living • Perform basic administrative duties and deal with minor house repairs • Participate in Matthew House community events when available. • Provide youth with holiday and personal celebrations Reports to: Operations Manager, Matthew House Remuneration: Free room and shared living space in Parkdale, Toronto. Deadline: November 10, 2017 Starting Date, November 27, 2017 Please send résumé and cover letter by e-mail to: astar@ matthewhouse.ca For more info, you may call the Operations Manager: Astar at 416-859-7848 23


Leadership at Spring Garden Pastoral Team Gene Tempelmeyer, Pastor 416-223-4593 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 Michelle Li, Church Office and Communications Manager Ext. 221 michelleli@springgardenchurch.ca Jeremy Ranasinghe, Discipleship Ministries Assistant jeremy.ranasinghe@springgardenchurch.ca

Deacons Sam Chaise sam_chaise@yahoo.com Adora Chui adora.chui@sgbc.ca Lesley Daniels lesley.daniels@sgbc.ca Joanne Laing ​joannelaing@gmail.com Gonzalo Librado gonzalo.librado@sgbc.ca Shannon Loewen shannon.loewen1@gmail.com Peggy Moore peggylouisemoore@gmail.com Esther Penner esther.penner@sgbc.ca Doug Willson doug.willson191@gmail.com 24

647-968-5065 905.962.3897 416.806.5373 416-617-6582 416.229.2695 647-202-0701 416.225.2406 416.227.1840 416.221.0450 25


Elders Garth Barron garthbarron@sympatico.ca Darlene Boyd darlene.boyd@gmail.com Cindie Chaise cchaise@yahoo.ca Cheryl Chapman cheryl.chapman@live.ca Joanna James jo.april.james@gmail.com Barrie Porter barriep91@gmail.com Brad Sider ​bradsider@yahoo.ca Corinne Sutton-Smith blestfoods@aol.com

416-724-9329 416.385.2483

Community Corner

Life around Spring Garden

416.738.0530 416.222.6963 647.928.0862 416.829.4210 647.200.6853 647.704.7710 ​​

Neighbour Link North York Fundraising Holiday Concert Sat, Nov 18, 2017, 2pm

Discipleship Ministry Interns Sarah Lander - Children’s Intern sarah.lander@sgbc.ca Diana Boisvert - Youth Intern diana.boisvert@sgbc.ca Calvin Pais - Parent and Family Engagement Intern calvin.pais@sgbc.ca

Spring Garden Church T 416.223.4593 112 Spring Garden Ave. F 416.223.6126 Toronto ON M2N3G3 www.springgardenchurch.ca office@springgardenchurch.ca Prayer Line 416.223.4038 26

Featuring The Salvation Army Band Soprano Stella Chung Bass David Graham Refreshments and Silent Auction to follow. Free-will offering to support our work in helping seniors in need. For information: Phone 416-221-8283 email: neighourlink1@295.ca website: www.neighbourlink.org 27


OPERATION GOOD THING

Over the past six years, the Willowdale community has

Job Search Help The Syrian Refugee Action Group (RAG) committee has felt it is time to move to the next phase in getting the family integrated and self-sustaining in Canada. We would like to encourage them to look for a job, hopefully starting in January 2018. However, to get them there, we are asking you for help in the following activities:

worked together to provide holiday gifts and cards for 460 homeless youth in homeless shelters. This SEVENTH year we are aiming to assemble another 65 holiday gift bags. These gift bags provide necessary hygiene items and personalized holiday cards to each youth in both Eva's Initiatives Youth Homeless Shelters here in Willowdale!

- job search skills: resume building, searching and applying for jobs, interviewing - potential job opportunities - personally accompanying Tariq and Ahmed to Placement Agencies - any other skills training Tariq has interest and skills in sales, baking, and barber. Ahmed has interest and skills in construction, renovations, handy-man type of work. If you like to help, please contact RAG@sgbc.ca.

Help us celebrate the triumphs, good choices and lives of Eva’s youth in Willowdale! 1. DONATE $28 now to give hope to a homeless youth in Willowdale - willowdaleoutreach.yugta.ca 2. JOIN the ALL-AGES SKATING & PIZZA PARTY at Mel Lastman Square skating rink on December 21st (6:30pm8pm)! 28

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What’s Happening

Board Game Cafe

Life in Spring Garden

Weekly Tuesdays 1:00 pm - Pastoral Team Meeting in Meeting Room

Please join us for our second annual Board Game Cafe! Enjoy some friendly competition and delicious snacks. All ages are welcome. Feel free to bring a friend. Friday November 17th from 7 - 9 pm in the Youth Lounge.

Wednesdays 10:00 am -11:30 am - Refresh Women's Group - in West Lounge (childcare provided) 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm - ESL cafe - Wednesday in East Lounge (starting Oct 18th) Thursdays 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm - The Thursday Bunch - in East lounge Sundays 9:00 am - 10:00 am - ESL Bible Class - Sunday in Basement Hallway 9:00 am -10:00 am - Sunday Morning Bible Study - in Meeting Room 10:00 am - 11:30 am - Sunday Morning Worship (communion on the first Sunday of the month) 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 address at the bottom of our home page to subscribe to our weekly update

This Month Nov 5 - 12-3pm - Youth Group Go-Kart and Mini Golf (pg. 15) Nov 12 - 3pm - John Irwin's Funeral. Visitation at 2pm Nov 17 - 7-9pm - Board Game Cafe (pg. 30 ) Nov 18 - 9am-3pm - Painting Workshop 2 (pg. 16 ) - 2pm - Neighbourlink Fundraising Holiday Concert (pg. 27) Dec 3 - 10am - Integenerational Worship Gathering

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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.

November 2017 Delve