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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?"

Monday, April 4, 2011

History

This past weekend was the first ever gathering and training session of Canada East Mission’s new team of Mission Advocates and Bishops. They met around tables in Kitchener congregation’s fellowship hall to begin to better understand their new roles. The group spent two days listening to presentations, asking questions, suggesting answers, exploring, imagining, discerning and visioning together, all in search of understanding. They also shared in considerable joy and laughter. At the end of that time, it began to feel like we were writing on a new page in the history of Canada East Mission. Indeed we were.

Why was this meeting that important? There are probably several ways to answer that question, but I am thinking of one in particular this morning. This gathering represents a change in our approach to leadership in our mission centre. It is a change born of necessity, but it is also the right approach for our time.

The “necessity” was brought about by changing financial realities. In years past, we often looked to outside experts for guidance and leadership. We expected World Church to send us leaders to teach us about what we should do. If the people we needed were not available, we would simply hire local experts and look to the World Church budget to train and pay them. There is certainly value in that model, and we will continue to draw on the expertise of world church leaders in the future, albeit in a different way, probably in the form of guest ministry rather than resident experts.

We all know that in recent years the World Church budget has contracted and there is not as much money available, so the mission centre staff has grown smaller. We have gone from six or more specialists who were available to travel and support congregations to three, and soon we will be down to two. Because both of these positions are largely administrative, there is little time or opportunity to travel to congregations. Hence, the need for a change. Who will support the congregations as they go about their mission? Who will provide that vital link between World Church and congregations? Who will be there to help pastors, congregational financial officers and others when they need assistance?

The answer lies in recognizing that God has provided many people in our mission centre, called and available, to fulfill these vital roles. They are ministers of vision and ministers of generosity. These women and men have stepped forward and are ready to serve with energy and love. As they begin their work, they are gaining confidence in their God given giftedness and calling. They will serve well. I look forward with a growing sense of excitement as these leaders begin their work.

History has turned a page, and these new leaders are writing our story. Praise God!

Posted by Carman

2 comments:

  1. I feel blessed to share in this part of the history of the church. Thanks be to God for the Spirit that blessed our gathering. Linda P.

    ReplyDelete
  2. We are blessed to have you, Linda.

    ReplyDelete