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The spot for the good news, the good word, the quick reports of the many, many wonderful news items I hear all the time and want to share with the rest of you. Expect to find the good news when you come to check out "what’s the good word?"

Friday, May 21, 2010


On Monday May 10th, 2010 the city of Barrie celebrated the announcement that it had qualified as a Fair Trade City. In doing so Barrie sends a message to the world that it is committed to supporting the Fair Trade program that has produced measureable improvements in the quality of life of millions of people around the world. Lest you think that this is mere window dressing, or that it just means that Barrie serves Fair Trade Coffee in city coffee pots, you can read more about what Barrie has committed to by clicking It is a signficant commitment to the city's role in achieving peace and justice throughout the world.

There are over 600 cities worldwide who have qualified to join the Fair Trade movement; however the movement is fairly new in Canada. According to Barrie’s Fair Trade website, this makes Barrie the largest Fair Trade City in the country, and “a true leader in the Canadian Fair Trade Movement.” Twelve other Canadian cities, including Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, and Quebec City have recently committed to qualify. I am proud of Barrie for doing this. This is an important commitment and significant achievement by this community of 130,000 people; one of the fastest growing cities in Canada.

You might wonder why anyone who doesn’t live in Barrie would even pay attention. For me there are two reasons. First, I am interested in the Fair Trade movement. It produces better lives for indigenous farmers and sustainable agricultural practices throughout the developing world. In order to achieve that end, I am willing to pay a little extra for my coffee, bananas, grapes, etc. It is worth every penny.

(Pause while I take another sip of my delicious morning coffee!)

Second, I am interested in knowing more about the community of Barrie because we plan to soon plant a new Community of Christ congregation here. By next year at this time, you should be able to read all about this new plant here at What’s the Good Word!

Paul Nixon, in his book, Fling Open the Doors: Giving the Church Away to the Community, says pastors and church planters must absolutely fall in love with their communities. I will be neither pastor nor planter in Barrie, but in doing the preparatory work for this new church, I have already learned to love this town. I look forward to meeting more of the people who live there.

So, GO BARRIE! We are proud of you.

Posted by Carman


  1. That is such good news. Now if more and more Canadian cities will do the same. Let's hope others will get approval.


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