Spotlight: Mission & Ministry
And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” Then I said, “Here I am! Send me.”
Did you know 70% of children leave organized sports by the age 13! A major reason for this dropout rate is the pressure from adults. Pressure to win from parents and coaches has had a profound impact on sport culture.
According to Changing the Game Project, the top reasons children are dropping out are:
1) It’s no longer fun
2) They have lost ownership of the experience
3) They don’t get playing time
4) They are afraid to make mistakes
5) They feel disrespected
Much of this impact occurs without really trying. In fact, most adults (Christian and non-Christian) start out with good intentions. They want to make a difference, but can leave children wounded because of their unawareness.
I am reminded of Isaiah chapter 6. God shakes the foundations of Isaiah’s being and transforms him into a new person. God reveals to him the destructive forces at work in his own life and culture. In verse 5, Isaiah says:
“Woe is me! For I am lost: for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!”
What does it look like for you to intentionally help change the youth sport experience? How can your church deliberately equip coaches, players and volunteers to make a kingdom difference in sport? Truly effective Sports & Recreation Ministry prepares God’s people to influence culture through the gospel.
Since 1892 Avant Ministries has focused on planting the church where is does not yet exist. We seek to continuously shorten the amount of time it takes to develop mature, reproducing churches led by nationals. Avant trains, sends and serves missionaries in over 40 countries globally.
The urgency of our mission propels us to value innovation built on sound principles. These guide our strategies for planting reproducing churches in hard soil. Using media in the creative access countries of North Africa has led to an accelerating impact. In Asia, profitable business platforms grant us both access and the means for national church planters to be bi-vocationally self-sufficient. In other places, a highly collaborative team approach can accelerate the church planting process as missionaries model the body of Christ for those who have never seen it before.
Avant’s pre-church and healthy-church metrics help us keep focused. Using these measurements of biblical characteristics, we can assess our stewardship, strategize our next steps, and be informed when new churches are ready for independence.
We recognize that cross cultural church planting is very difficult. The sobering statistics from sending agencies around the world, tell us that up to 50% of foreign missionaries return home sooner than they expected, and that 71% of these return for preventable reasons. Earnest missionaries are too valuable to lose. We are committed to integrated training, diligent field coaching, and active member care to make sure you have the best chance of living out your calling to reach the unreached.
Located just 30 minutes away and a short ferry ride from Vancouver, Bowen Island Lodge is surrounded by natural beauty overlooking Deep Bay’s shoreline. With 24 guestrooms and 3 well-appointed meeting rooms, the Lodge can host events of up to 200 guests. An ideal setting for spiritual retreats or summer camps, the extensive grounds at Bowen Island Lodge leave plenty of space for exploring and enjoying relaxing activities such as kayaking, cycling, bocce, or yoga to name a few.
Our meeting space, the Bowen Room, offers ample natural light with incredible views of Howe Sound. Featuring a cozy fireplace to enjoy a quiet evening among friends, the Bowen Room also provides direct access to an outdoor patio equipped with a comfortable lounging area.
Visit our website or contact us to get inspired at Bowen Island Lodge. www.bowenislandlodge.ca 1-877-947-2129
If ever there was a time when time playing outdoors was essential to our children’s education, and health, it is now. The Canadian government has posted research showing an increase in youth obesity, depression and attention disorders unprecedented in our history. And if you’ve not read Richard Louv’s book Last Child in the Woods as a treatise on the ‘… staggering divide between children and the outdoors’, you should! ‘Last Child in the Woods is the first book to bring together a new and growing body of research indicating that direct exposure to nature is essential for healthy childhood development and for the physical and emotional health of children …’. ©2013 Richard Louv
Whole populations of children and youth are categorized as ‘gamers’. Youth who struggle with the addiction of playing video and computer games is a growing and alarming trend. More than ever, safe, outdoor play for children is essential to develop a child’s positive identity and attitude towards physical activity. These needs are very real and we feel the answer to gaming addictions, the rise in obesity and other physical activity related disorders, as well as many social ones, lies in loving, safe and Christ-centered community-oriented outdoor activity. In short: Christian Summer Camp!
Richard Louv coins a description term for this concern. He calls it ‘nature-deficit disorder’. As a member of the Fellowship of Christian Camps, we feel we’re an integral part of the answer to overcoming this disorder. Connection to creation and each other is necessary for a healthy life, as God intended, and we ought not to deprive our children this need out of fear. At Camp Squeah we seek to meet these needs and expose children to God’s loving embrace in the wonder of his creative wilderness. Take your family on a tenting trip, go for family hikes in your city’s parks, sign up for sports camps or register your children to the great variety of Christian summer camp options this summer. Camp is essential health education for all children and provides a unique spiritual opportunity not found in the church building.
For almost 75 years, Christian Service Brigade and the churches of British Columbia have been winning and training boys for Christ. The need for boys to have a place where they can learn to be men of God has never been so great. Churches in the Lower Mainland from Coquitlam to Chilliwack continue to offer great programs that draw boys of the church and community, and build them in Jesus; churches like Calvary Baptist, Coquitlam; Eagle Ridge Bible Fellowship; Bear Creek Community Church; Langley’s LEFC; Aldergrove Alliance; Greendale MB and River of Life Church in Chilliwack.
Men of the local church are equipped and certified by CSB to win and train today’s boys and young men. The programs combine Godly action with Biblical truth. Tree Climbers invites the boy and his father to explore topics that excite him. Stockade takes it further, encouraging the boy to choose his own adventure with a growing variety of Outpost Adventures and Stockade Modules. Battalion is all about being a man of valour focused on honour, courage, chivalry, purity, loyalty, obedience and dedication to Christ.
Check out what’s new with CSB in the Lower Mainland at www.csbbc.org and get your boys to a CSB group near you.
The Anthropic Principle describes the fact that many cosmological constants or physical parameters we observe in the universe are so finely tuned as to make human life permissible. This principle is hardly surprising to the Bible-believing Christian. The Anthropic Principle is great evidence for the Creator, the God of the Bible, because it points towards a beneficent being that could also be described as the Intelligent Designer or First Cause. This principle shows us that there is a “who” responsible for all of creation. The scriptures clarify for us the exact identity of this “who”. Therefore, the Anthropic Principle directs us to the “who” of creation. What the Anthropic Principle fails to do however, is to tell us the “when” of creation. If we want to find out about when creation occurred, all we need to do is look into the scriptures to find out. There is a reason why we have a historical account contained in the first book of the Bible: Genesis. Inside this book of beginnings we discover that creation occurred in the recent historical past and our omnipotent and all wise Creator did it all in six normal days. “In the beginning God created…”.
I started meeting with a couple of new Christians two years ago focusing on getting into God’s word daily, memorizing scripture, prayer and sharing the gospel. Over the next two years we kept each other accountable and encouraged each other in our walk with God. Just recently one of the students shared their faith with one of their friends and the other left for a short-term mission trip to the Philippines. These are two opportunities that would not even been on their radar two years ago. The amazing part about true discipleship is that God takes the individual and prepares them to do works that He has prepared for them (Ephesians 2:10). Our relationship with God becomes fruitful because we are actively listening to Him and active in our obedience. One of the greatest challenges and joys that God has given to us as believers is to disciple one another. Let us take up the challenge that the world will only be changed when individuals’ hearts are changed by Jesus Christ and the way that He changes hearts and builds his army is through discipleship. “Only a disciple can make a disciple.” – A. W. Tozer
HOPE Outreach of Canada exists so that our neighbours worldwide and particularly those in the Holy Land come to know Jesus and as His fully committed followers, promote His true and lasting peace. We do this by supporting Bethlehem Bible College and its local humanitarian arm, the Shepherd’s Society. Bethlehem Bible College trains Palestinian Arab Christians to take the Gospel to their own people. An extension of these classes is offered globally online where many students are believers from a Muslim background.
Musalaha, meaning reconciliation, bridges the wide cultural gap between Messianic Israeli believers and Arab Christians. HOPE Outreach projects provide training, summer camps and desert encounters which bring these two groups together around their shared worship of Jesus Christ. Together these Christians become a much-needed voice for peace.
HOPE Outreach also sponsors Canadian life-changing ministry trips to the Holy Land. Visit us at Booth U-4 at Missions Fest Vancouver.
Two thousand-plus refugee claimants have arrived in BC in 2017. Hoping for safety and security, these individuals long to be free of persecution and trauma. However, upon arrival, they often encounter homelessness, uncertainty, and difficulty accessing basic resources.
Journey Home Community (JHC) welcomes refugee claimants into the community by offering housing, resettlement support, and relational care. JHC has limited capacity to meet the needs of all those who are arriving and is seeking church and community groups who are willing to partner with us in the Refugee Claimant Sponsorship Program.
Recently, we met a pregnant mother living in a women’s shelter. Her husband, staying at a hostel, wasn’t permitted to visit. JHC trained and equipped a church partner who sponsored this family. Housing and support were provided, the family was reunited, and together, they recently celebrated the birth of their beautiful little boy.
Call (604)568-4892 or email email@example.com to find out how your group can sponsor a refugee family, already in Canada and in need of support.
M2W2 – Vancouver Chapter Currently, BC has 36 Community Residential Facilities that provide housing and correctional programming for offenders.
The M2W2 Vancouver Chapter program provides a circle-based or one-on-one model to offer strategic support, friendship and accountability to offenders living in communities. The over-arching goal of the program is to increase public safety and build the capacities, assets, and strengths of the participant thus lowering recidivism and increasing reintegration success.
Our volunteers Gerrit and Connie DeJong recently wrote; “The highlight of this year with our match was that he was able to move from Mission Minimum to a halfway house…We helped him set up his new room giving him a Christmas tree and celebrating his birthday by taking him out for dinner. He is extremely thankful for his new-gained freedom and our journey together these past nine years. He is very motivated to stay engaged in life with work and relationships. We visit him regularly and even more often now that he has his day parole. For us, it has been a positive and motivating experience as well realizing that we all do life together.”
For more information on this friendship based mentoring programme contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 604-859-3215.
“If you have known this all this time, how come no one has come to tell us?” In despair the Weyu chief shook his head from side to side, “We’re very bad. We have broken all those commandments!” For days he repeated the same words over and over as if he couldn’t move on. Only months earlier the government didn’t know his tribe existed, or that they had lived at the base of some hills in a hidden cove for ages. But God knew! Day after day they gathered to hear God’s story, and day by day their faith grew. You could see it in their eyes and hear it in their questions. But there are still 3,000 other people groups just like this one, who have not yet had one chance to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ. What are we gonna do? Somebody’s gotta go? Would you….go, or send?
Nurses Christian Fellowship Canada (NCFC) is a ministry dedicated to caring for Christian nurses and allied healthcare workers across the country. We are committed to supporting nurses who seek to develop witness, cultivate spiritual growth, demonstrate Christian love, learn and apply their faith, serve as leaders, and participate in the global mission of the church by praying, giving, and serving.
Our provincial and national programs provide opportunities for nurses to meet other Christian nurses and healthcare workers; gather in small groups for Bible study, fellowship, and prayer; attend events and conferences to learn how to integrate their Christian faith with their nursing practice; receive individual mentorship; and serve the LORD through their time and talents.
Creation model approach
One of the hallmarks of Reasons to Believe is our testable creation model approach to integrating science and the Christian faith. Using a model approach offers explanations for how, when, where, and why the phenomena (or system) occurs. It anticipates, or predicts, discoveries that could either verify or falsify the model’s explanation(s).
The following foundational beliefs help shape how we interpret the data.
- The Bible (including Genesis 1–11) is the error-free word of God.
- The creation account of Genesis 1 follows a basic chronology.
- The record of nature is also a reliable revelation from God.
- The message of nature will agree with what the Bible says.
- The Bible contains a selective summary description of God’s creation activity
- God gives humans the privilege to fill in the details.
We build our model by collating all that the Bible says about God’s creative work and integrating the individual accounts into a coherent picture.
We believe God’s two revelations (scripture and nature) will agree when properly interpreted. When apparent contradictions arise, we reexamine the data.
Sometimes the scientific data seems an unclear or awkward fit with the biblical data. But we see such instances as an opportunity to study both of God’s revelations more deeply.
The Samaritan Inn – Set Free Ministries has been a part of the Abbotsford community for 20 years, working with men coming out of addiction. We are a Christian program that focuses on discipleship first and foremost. Our program is an open-ended stay with most clients staying one year or more. We currently have two licensed houses where we house 19 men.
Our vision for the future is to build a 20 to 30 bed Christian recovery centre that provides addiction recovery programs, discipleship and drop in, as well as second stage housing.
Our purpose is to build a bridge from the streets to a new life in Christ and reconciliation with family and the community as a whole.
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Joe (not his real name), a grade 11 student, struggles with depression. He often feels isolated from his peers and even from his family. Sometimes, Joe feels like his life has no purpose; that no one would miss him if he were no longer alive.
Today many young people feel like Joe – like their lives don’t matter. Why do so many of our youth today struggle to understand that they are valuable; that their lives matter?
It’s because we are living in a value crisis. Our culture treats human beings like commodities and values possessions and status over relationships. We are constantly being fed the message that we are not enough. Young people we meet see the fallout from this value crisis every day at school and in their own personal lives. They are having increasing experiences of addiction, abuse and despair because they don’t know why their life matters.
Signal Hill is an educational non profit whose work is to help young people, like Joe, discover they matter. Through presentations, workshops and educational resources, we help transform young people by teaching them that they have value and, in turn, they see the value in those around them.
Joe attended one of Signal Hill’s programs and his life is changing. He now understands that he is valuable, worthy of being treated with dignity and respect which is changing the way he sees others, too.
You can partner with Signal Hill to help young people discover that they matter. Visit our website at www.thesignalhill.com.
Nestled in the mountains overlooking beautiful Cultus Lake, Stillwood is a place where thousands find renewal every year, a place to rest, a place to reconnect with nature and with God the creator.
This is a place where people are invited to explore what it means to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Every year hundreds of children and youth experience summer camp for the first time giving them an opportunity to make new friends and renew broken relationships. This is a place where thousands of school children come with their class/school every year to experience the beauty of nature and to participate in our Outdoor Education Program.
This is a also a place of change, change in facility, in programs offered and sometimes change in leadership and this is a year of significant change in our leadership.
After serving for 21 years as the Executive Director here at Stillwood Harry Edwards and his wife Gail are leaving.
Stillwood has experienced extensive growth in facility, programs and services under their leadership.
The transition to new leadership will take place over the coming weeks, as David Seeley assumes the role of Executive Director here at Stillwood. David comes with several years of camp leadership experience, he currently serves as the Executive Director at Redberry Bible Camp in Saskatchewan.