Café Logos is open for you
by Jack Taylor
The Canadian Bible Society (CBS) resource center has been resurrected with a new look and layout at 1207 Kingsway (at Inverness) in Vancouver. The new Café Logos makes it an inviting place to stop for a coffee, a read, and perhaps a conversation.
Supervisor Kurt Thiele says, “I became a Christian because of the ministry of CBS.” Ten years ago, Kurt’s father was involved in the “Bikes for Bibles” program. Thiele was not yet a believer. “I’m not much of a cyclist,” he admits, “but I was drawn to the incredible trip they had planned, cycling from the Lower Mainland all the way through the Rocky Mountains to Calgary.”
Little did he know the level of spiritual impact the trip would have on him. “I came away from that trip with a strong desire to read the Bible. And so I did. That led me to being the Christian that I am today.”
Thiele is a world traveler with a natural style of connecting with people from many backgrounds. He says that the four pillars of CBS include translation, publication, distribution and engagement. The café, with specialty coffees, supports the engagement pillar by providing “a warm, welcoming environment that is open to everyone in the community.” Neighbours have started coming in and there is hope that this hub can be a center for reaching out.
The open concept layout of the Kingsway shop was developed by volunteers who used their expertise as coffee consultants and interior decorators to provide an attractive, non-threatening environment. Educated staff help host monthly events where faith-oriented discussions promote books. “People still love to read and handle a physical copy,” Thiele says, “and everyone has their favourite version of the Bible which we can help them find.”
The Kingsway location is currently operating with a soft opening on Tuesday through Saturday and is aiming for a grand opening in the spring after the “fine-tuning” is completed. The Canadian Bible Society center has an entertaining Facebook page (vanbiblecafe) and an app to help locate resources.
Founded in 1904, the non-denominational CBS is part of the United Bible Society which operates in over 145 countries. The purposes of the Society are “to translate without doctrinal note, to publish and distribute the Christian Scriptures, and to promote and encourage the use of the Bible throughout Canada and worldwide in cooperation with members of the United Bible Societies and other organizations.”
In BC, the Bible was first distributed to gold miners during the 1850’s. The first Canadian native translation was in Mohawk back in 1804. Ninety percent of the world’s population has some form of Scripture in a language they know, with the whole New Testament in 1,400 languages and the entire Bible in 450 languages.