Cliffs Notes: March 7, 2023

I was with our Harrowsmith church family on Sunday. They are enjoying God’s blessing! They had a prayer service last week which saw 60-80 people come forward for prayer. This week they celebrated some of the answers to prayer. Two were deeply grateful to God for physical healings, and another described how God had miraculously dealt with a deep hurt, “trauma” that had crippled him much of his life. It was powerful to hear. Actually it was powerful to see: they chose to use the cardboard testimony method. They had 8 people write on one side of a large white cardboard, what was going on (“depression”, “injured arm”, PTSD, abuse, etc) and then the same person flipped the card over to celebrate what God had done (“healed”, “peace”, joy, etc). People erupted into applause after each cardboard flip! Pastor Craig explained that this was one way for people testify without having to say a word in public!

So that last week’s prayer time is not a one-off event, they are starting a prayer-team which will be ministering each Sunday.

Oh Church, that prayer for and with each other would be an essential component of our Sunday times together. That you and I will have had opportunity each week to pray for and be prayed for, personally. What are Sunday times together if this is not offered? Do you have a trained prayer team ready to minister every Sunday?

And oh Church, we have to celebrate weekly and publicly answers to prayers.

Regional Gatherings
: I was asked what we can expect at Regional Gatherings

  • Everyone is welcome. We believe in connectionalism, and one way to nurture this is time together – like at a Regional Gathering! Please pre-register;
  • It is a day long event. If you are traveling a long way, then plan to drive the night before (the host church can help with billeting if you need it);
  • In order to prime-the-pump for discussion, and Q&A, we will send out videos for you to watch prior to the event. Task force and team updates to help you to know what these groups are up to, and what their plans are;
  • Come prepared to share your recent church family God-stories, and come with questions about ministry in this new season in Canada;
  • We will worship together, and be sure to pray together all day long (this alone would be reason enough to come: to come together to pray);
  • We will have lunch together (the only cost associated to the event is your lunch and break-time snacks and coffee). This is why you must pre-register so that the hosts have enough for you. Click here for information on all event dates and locations, as well as registration;
  • We have committed a significant amount of time for the LGBTQ2S+ Task Force. They will update you on their findings thus far (compiled from survey results, interviews, calls, and letters). They will then be open to Q&A and feedback. I will tell you more about this next week…
Tuesdays: Cliff’s Notes
2nd Tuesday of each month: What’s Got You Thinking?
(New editions of ‘What’s Got You Thinking?’ will resume a little later in the year)

Check out all the latest photos from around the FMCiC here:

Rev. Dr. Benjamin Platz – status changed from “Associate Pastor” at Next Church, Kingston, ON to “Released for Service Beyond Denomination-Missionary, SIM Canada Institute, Scarborough, ON”, effective March 3

None scheduled

Tyndale University’s Annual Wesley Studies Symposium is taking place on April 25, and once again the Lorne Park Foundation is sponsoring Free Methodist attendance.
This year marks the thirtieth anniversary of the Bastian Chair of Wesley Studies at Tyndale. We are celebrating with keynotes from the two previous Chairs: Victor Shepherd and Howard Snyder. We’ll be exploring the theme, “Heritage and Hope: Wesleyan Wisdom for the Future of Ministry.”
This will be a hybrid event, so you can join via livestream if you aren’t able to make the trip to Toronto.
The Lorne Park Foundation is covering in-person registration for up to 25 Free Methodists. Both ministers and lay people are eligible. Click here to apply for a ticket through Lorne Park (don’t register through the Tyndale website if you are taking this option).  The deadline to apply is MARCH 31  
If you are going to attend online, registration is $25 +HST and you can do so here:
This symposium is worth 6 hours of required Continuing Education Units (CEUs) for Ordained and Commissioned Ministers, whether you attend in-person or online.

Register online through the link above (Tuition payment is not required when registering for a course.  Payment is due 10 days before the course begins.)

Lay Ministers tracking for credentialed ministry and those transferring ordination credentials into the FMCIC need to take the following two courses for full credit – and if possible, the Heart course first and then Wesleyan Theology.

Heart of Canadian Free Methodism:
June 2-4, 2023 – Uxbridge FMC, Uxbridge, ON

Wesleyan Theology:
November 3-5, 2023 – location TBA*

Also available:

    • Self-paced, up to 8 months to complete
    • 16-week intensive version, select Instructor Vaughan (session start dates: May 1, June 26, Aug. 21, Oct. 16)
  • Central Christian College online, 6 weeks, asynchronous  deadline to apply: Sept 18 (start dates Oct 2 and Nov 12)
  • Northeastern Seminary at Roberts Wesleyan University

Ministerial Candidates tracking for Commissioned or Ordained Minister are required to take the following two courses for full credit.  Those who are already commissioned or ordained are required to either audit these two courses for 1 Continuing Education Unit (CEU) each or take the two courses and complete the assignments for 3 CEUs each.

Culture and the Missional Church:
Date and location TBA*

Personal Stewardship:
5-week online course – Start Date TBA  

(* These course locations are selected based on where the majority of the participants reside – so please register early!)



[PLEASE NOTE:  The FMCiC preference for LSP is for students to attend one of the approved schools on this list. However, if you decide to apply to a non-approved school, you must first send a request to the Credentialing Coordinator to determine whether the committee will approve funding for you to study at a non-approved school. Along with your request, please include a written explanation as to why you are choosing to study at a non-approved institution. It is strongly recommended that you do this before paying tuition, and well in advance of the LSP deadline. The Credentialing Coordinator, along with the LSP committee, will consider each request individually and according to LSP policy.]

The Leadership Scholarship Plan (LSP) provides financial assistance to candidates who are studying to meet the educational requirements for credentialed ministry, or for members of conference pursuing continuing education.

October 15 is the next deadline to apply for LSP for any courses taken during the spring, summer and/or fall semesters of 2023. The 2023 application forms and instructions are now available to download from the link above.  Please use the application forms marked “rev 2023.”

The Special Scholarships provide financial assistance to those who are members of a Free Methodist church pursuing post-secondary education to grow in their Christian faith, to those who are pursuing credentialed ministry, and to members of conference pursuing continuing education.

October 15 is the deadline to apply for the annual Special Scholarships for courses taken during the 2023 calendar year – apply online anytime from the link above.  Special Scholarships are awarded in late November/early December each year.

Ordained and Commissioned Ministers (except retirees) are to annually report hours acquired during each year for Continuing Education Units (CEUs).  Check the link above for information on CEUs, and a list of examples of many different types of life-long learning that can be applied as CEUs.

You can now send a report online anytime you have hours to submit for CEUs.  Here is the link:

Note:  For those who attend the fall Minister’s Conferences or the spring Regional Gatherings, attendance is now taken at these events so 6 hours of CEU credit for each event will automatically be recorded.

For those who took courses and/or did in-depth research and learning about how to make the changes required during the pandemic (ie how to live-stream services), add the number of those hours to your annual CEU report.


Bracebridge, ON – New Hope FM Church
Kingston, ON – Polson Park FM Church
Madoc, ON – Madoc Free Methodist/Wesleyan Church
Sarnia, ON – New Horizons Community Church
Sault Ste Marie, ON – Hillside FM Church
Warkworth, ON – Warkworth FM Church

Church Profiles Available
Contact Davika Dotson in the Leadership Development Office to request a church profile – [email protected] (deadline to apply in brackets)

Brampton, ON – Bramalea FM Church (part-time) [April 18]
Hilton Beach, ON – St. Joseph Island FM Church (full-time) [March 28]
Salmon Arm BC – Lakeside Community Church (full or part-time – negotiable) [March 21]
Thornbury, ON – Blue Mountain Community Church (full-time) [March 28]

Preparing Profiles
If you are interested in seeing the profile for any of these churches, please contact Davika in the Leadership Development Office [see above] and the profile will be emailed to you as soon as it becomes available.

Brantford, ON – The Open Door Church (Rev. Greg Pulham – retiring Apr 30)
Campbellford, ON – Campbellford FM Church (Rev. Leonard Bruce – Interim Pastor)
Cloyne, ON – Pineview FM Church
Dunnville, ON – Dunnville FM Church (Rev. Neale Robb – Interim Pastor)
Frankford, ON – Frankford Community Church
Godfrey, ON – Cole Lake FM Church
Kingston, ON – Kingscourt FM Church

Marmora, ON – Marmora FM Church (Pastor Keith Deyo – Interim Pastor) 

Orillia, ON – Church on the Hill (Pastor Velma Shewfelt – Interim Pastor)
Richmond Hill, ON – Richmond Hill Chinese & English FM Churches (Rev. Louis Leung – Interim Pastor)
Seeley’s Bay, ON – Pine Grove Community Church

Tillsonburg, ON – Open Arms Church
Wallaceburg, ON – Charlemont FM Church 


Café Manager – Arlington Woods FMC
Associate Pastor of Worship Ministry – Northview Community Church