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What is to be our Response to so Much Hate? 

It’s heart-breaking to sit down to write an opening article two editions in a row where there is no choice but to address acts of horrific violence against marginalized people. As much as I would like to open up this installment of the Canadian Disciple with stories and words of hope for us as we move closer to our bi-annual gathering…that isn’t possible. The kind of tragedy we witness on our television screens and through computer monitors each day cannot be answered with silence. 

We grieve with our brothers and sisters around the world who suffer at the hands of hate and fear. Our hearts are burdened down with what seems like the inescapable, irreparable destruction of racism not only to the south of us, but here at home. How can we proclaim hope, peace, and joy, in the face of such horrors? How are we to be light and salt in situations like this? What is our response to be when we cannot change the colour of our skin, and can only watch, seemingly helpless, from the sidelines?

Friends, we are not helpless and there is a response.  Yes, we must grieve and share in the grief of those who, for no other reason than they have black or brown skin, are not considered fully human. Yes, we must pray and stand in solidarity against racism in all of its ugly forms. And we must act. We must dismantle the systems that keep us separated from one another, hating and fearing each other. We must look each into our own lives and notice our privilege, where we benefit from the colour of our skin. We must recognize that white people inherently carry privilege over others…as much as we might deny it, it is true. Accepting this, we must then work to change ourselves, to educate ourselves and begin to change how we live. This may mean stopping, thinking, asking ourselves hard questions like why we react to people of colour in a certain way, why we use certain language, or find ourselves trying to justify the violence against persons of colour in some way. We can start by taking anti-racism classes or organizing a workshop in our congregation or community. We can start by finding resources about the issues of racism and how to address it in our own lives and communities. But we cannot stop there. We must do it now and keep doing it until the systems that keep us separated from one another, that keep people of colour marginalized, no longer exist. It starts with each one of us examining our hearts and our lives, and choosing to live in radically different ways. The violence, segregation, hate, and fear will not end until we change ourselves. May God give us the strength and courage to commit and start today. Yours in Christ, Jen
July Prayer Partners
June 3 – St Thomas Christian Church, St Thomas ON
St Thomas is currently searching for a pastor.
July 10 – All Peoples’ Christian Church, Charlottetown, PEI
Our only Island congregation! Good news coming from All Peoples, Rev Scott is doing well after a long period of poor health.
July 17 – Stone Campbell United Church, Calgary, AB
Stone Campbell is a unique Disciples-United congregation doing some creative ministry in Calgary.
July 24 – Mapleton Church of Christ, Mapleton, ON
Mapleton is a vibrant rural congregation who have gone through some great changes in the last few years to streamline & renew their ministry.
July 31 – Broadway United Disciples Church, Winnipeg, MB
Our only Manitoba congregation is currently in the Search & Call process led by the United Church.


Contact information for
Rev Dr Jen Garbin: rm@canadadisciples.org Phone: 519-826-5767
Text: 519 751-4629

PDF Version available here

An Encounter with God

How many of us had the chance growing up to go to camp? If you were one of the lucky ones, you went at least once, maybe even every summer. Christian camping is an incredible time both for campers and staff to dig deep into faith, scripture, nature, and all kinds of other things! It is an opportunity to be away from home and the familiar, test wings, build trust, and explore in the safety of a loving environment. The camper experiences not only a whole different kind of life for a week (sharing cabins, tables, chores, games, etc), but how to make community and develop relationships super quick. It’s like a cooking pot where the right combination of fun, learning, faith, leadership, nature, and love, combine to transform lives.

Our Canadian camps have a long tradition of immersing children and teens in beautiful, well- tended pockets of nature. Dedicated staffs of volunteers work on programs that highlight environmental stewardship and scriptural learning and application that brings faith to life. For many of our campers, this is the only encounter they have with God and the church. As they grow and come back to camp year after year, many campers proclaim that this IS their church and these sacred spaces are where they find God. They encounter positive role models who live faith in real time, something that is harder and harder to come by in our increasingly secular society.  They can ask questions, explore faith, and begin to build a relationship with the One who created the beautiful space in which they find themselves. While at camp they see lived out the love of God in their leaders and learn to practice it in the new relationships they create. Our camps are extensions of our congregations…providing opportunities to experience God in life-changing ways.

Remember our camps in your prayers: Johnston Christian Park (South Range, NS), Disciples Conference Grounds (Haldimand, ON), and Pine Lake (Pine Lake, AB). Pray for our staffs, directors, volunteers, cooks, campers, custodians, and planning committees all of whom make this vital ministry possible every summer. Remember too those camps who are undertaking renovations, upgrading facilities, and are tackling the burdens of upkeep. Lend a hand whenever you can, be generous with your resources so that generation after generation kids and adults alike can encounter God’s love at camp.

To Convention or Not to Convention...

A great question circulating among church leaders in all denominations in North America is whether or not to continue having conventions and assemblies.  Numbers of convention attendees across the continent are going down – fewer people are attending. The cost is substantial. The planning is arduous. It’s always difficult to find enough people to make sure all the little bits and pieces get done. Is it still a viable “tool” for the church to gather en masse every two years? What really is accomplished?

Personally, I have always enjoyed my times at conventions and assemblies. I believe that the cost and energy involved in organizing, attending, and making it all happen is well worth it for a whole number of reasons.

First, in all the planning and preparation, it becomes abundantly clear that we are not alone. There are other congregations, people engaged in mission and ministry, new leaders emerging, and new people joining the flock. Planning the convention helps us remember that we are part of something larger than our own individual congregations and ministries. We are a network of co-workers, a people joined together in covenant to work together so that the love of God will touch more lives day after day. Convention foster HOPE and ENCOURAGEMENT in our ministries…we remember we are not in this alone.

Second, as the convention date gets closer, excitement starts to build. We look forward to reconnecting with our friends whom we haven’t seen in two years. We get excited about the educational opportunities, the speakers, getting a chance to see where other congregations are located and the work they are doing. We look forward to worshipping and eating together as one body. Convention fans the sparks of JOY that sometimes ebb in our daily life. It’s good to be together in the house of the Lord.

Third, the convention is an opportunity to learn new things about ministry, gather new ideas, share and compare stories, and experience first-hand the work of the Region and General Ministries. Education has always been a cornerstone of Disciples’ life and work. Convention offers a chance to learn from experts in the field, ask questions, discuss, and grow in our knowledge, wisdom, and understanding of the faith and ministry. Convention is an opportunity to encounter LEARNING and WISDOM not only for ourselves, but to take back home.

Fourth, convention offers us an opportunity for RETREAT and RENEWAL. Consider this time a chance to focus on your faith and relationship with God.  Oftentimes our faith becomes dry and we lose focus.  We get tired and begin to wonder if our spiritual well will ever be full again.  When we gather together intentionally in a large group, we are “retreating” to a quiet place to pray, worship, converse, and be in silence for a while.  We have the chance to encounter God in a different way with different people. There exists the possibility that we might be TRANSFORMED, RENEWED, and REFRESHED by our time away.

And fifth, when we gather from near and far, we have the opportunity to focus intensely and intently on the work we do together. We are called from differently kinds of lives with diverse gifts. Some of us are teachers and preachers, some helpers and builders, others are listeners and prayers. When we gather together from all of our different locations and congregations, we see a bigger picture of what God is doing through us. We see that even though we do important work in our own corners of the vineyard, the work we do is united through the power and love of God. We see first-hand the lessons we teach – that we are ONE BODY. It’s a great reminder and lesson that even though we are doing great work at home, when you put all the pieces together, the work is even greater! Our UNITY is vital to God’s work here in Canada and around the world. We see it first hand when we gather together.

So with the early-bird deadline drawing closer (July 11)…I hope if you are still wondering if coming to All Canada is for you, you will take the leap and come. If you  already have your flight booked…amen! Our time together will be rich with learning, joy, wisdom, hope, renewal, and one-ness.

See you in Milton this coming August 11-14! Register now at www.allcan2016.ca <>

"The Fabric of Our Faith"

The Maritime CWF Women’s Retreat was held June 10-12, 2016 at Johnston Christian Park (JCP) in South Range, Nova Scotia with 23 ladies in attendance.

The West Gore Christian Women’s Fellowship were in charge of the program this year and presented “The Fabric of Our Faith” as the theme for the weekend. Using the book “To Be Like Jesus”, developing a Christian Life-Style, by Rob Burkhart, we discussed areas of our lives we need to concentrate on to be more like Jesus wants us to be. We looked at the mind, the heart, behaviour, and relationships.

There were many in depth conversations and discussion as well as light hearted moments during the presentations. The West Gore ladies did a wonderful job of supplying us with a great weekend of singing, worship, crafts, fellowship, fun, and of course....great food. Well done.

Submitted by Diane Poole,
Wyndholme Christian Church CWF

OFFICIAL MEETING NOTICE FOR ALL MEMBERS
OF THE CHRISTIAN CHURCH (DISCIPLES OF CHRIST) IN CANADA
THE BIENNIAL MEETING OF THE ALL CANADA CONVENTION,
ALSO KNOWN AS THE REGIONAL CONVENTION OF THE
CHRISTIAN CHURCH (DISCIPLES OF CHRIST) IN CANADA
WILL TAKE PLACE ON SATURDAY, AUGUST 13, 2016
AT 9:30 A.M. ATLANTIC TIME
AT THE BEST WESTERN HOTEL & CONFERENCE CENTRE,
LIVERPOOL, NOVA SCOTIA
THE ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING OF THE CHRISTIAN CHURCH
(DISCIPLES OF CHRIST) IN CANADA
WILL TAKE PLACE ON FRIDAY, AUGUST 12, 2016
AT 3:15 P.M. ATLANTIC TIME
AT THE BEST WESTERN HOTEL & CONFERENCE CENTRE,
LIVERPOOL, NOVA SCOTIA
THIS IS A CALL TO ALL ADHERENTS AND CONGREGATIONS TO ELECT VOTING DELEGATES AND ASSIGN PROXY REPRESENTATION FOR THE ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING.
ALL ORDAINED AND COMMISSIONED CLERGY WITH STANDING SHALL HAVE
AUTOMATIC VOTING DELEGATE STATUS. IN ADDITION EACH CONGREGATION
SHALL HAVE THREE (3) VOTES TO BE DESIGNATED IN WRITING.
THE FOLLOWING CONGREGATIONS SHALL HAVE ADDITIONAL VOTES:
Broadway Disciples United Church in Winnipeg, Manitoba – 1 additional vote
Hillcrest Christian Church in Toronto, Ontario – 1 additional vote
Milton Christian Church in Milton, Nova Scotia – 1 additional vote
Gathering Place Christian Church in Ridgetown, Ontario - 1 additional vote
Winger Church of Christ (Disciples) in Wainfleet, Ontario – 1 additional vote
Please Email Voting Delegate Authorizations and Proxy Notice to:
Ben Kidd, Regional Administrator
mail@canadadisciples.org
Notices to be received by August 2, 2016, Please.

General Announcements & Invitations

  • Nominations for Regional Board: are you eager to share your gifts and leadership on the Regional Board? The Nominating Committee is accepting nominations for Board reps, Treasurer, Secretary, and Vice Moderator (VM must be from next conference area, Ontario). Please contact Janet Fountain asap if you are willing to serve. Emails can be sent to rm@canadadisciples.org and will be forwarded to Janet.
  •  Notice: The Canadian Disciple will be published bi-weekly going forward. Next edition due out July 22.
  • To receive the Canadian Disciple in your email, please send your request to rm@canadadisciples.org or sign-up on our website www.canadadisciples.org.

Contact information for Rev Dr Jennifer Garbin:

Email: rm@canadadisciples.org

Phone: 519-826-5767   Text: 519-731-4629

Snail Mail: 30 Grandridge Cres, Guelph, Ontario, N1H 8G1

Regional Office Mail: PO Box 72053, Coxwell/Danforth PO, Toronto, ON, M4C 0A1

A Blast from the Past: January 1927, The Canadian Disciple

In 1927, the young All Canada movement seeks to increase its journal subscriptions. For only a dollar subscribers received a yearly subscription to a paper that helped unite Disciples across the country. In addition, the publication served to connect people to the church who were too far away from Disciples’ congregations to attend. So why not email this edition to friends who have been absent, or who cannot get out…or print a copy and bring it along on your next visit! As it says above:

“Prescribe ‘Canadian Disciple’ where pep and power are lacking!”

Copyright © 2016 Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Canada, All rights reserved.
Published July 8, 2016 (Guelph, Ontario)

Submit your stories and congregational updates to:
rm@canadadisciples.org

Check our website for Regional information, RMs Calendar and more:
www.canadadisciples.org 

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Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Canada · PO Box 72053 · Coxwell/Danforth PO · Toronto, On M4C 0A1 · Canada

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