CliffsNotes – February 8, 2022

A Convoy & A People of Peace

FMCiC, we must distinguish ourselves as a people of peace. I believe that it is God’s heart for us in this season. People of peace (Jesus-people) are Jesus-centered, firmly rooted in Scripture, and prayer, while also being exceedingly humble, hospitable, and loving. Peace is not passive, it passionately pursues justice and freedom; it is courageous, sacrificial, creative and generous. This is the kind of Church that Canada needs.

A friend of mine posted on the wonderfully constructive conversation forum, Facebook (that line was sarcasm), a positionally neutral comment about the “Freedom Convoy”. For the next 24 hours his page lit up! Passionately angry comments for and against (by my count it was a pretty even divide). Most were Christians. There was name calling (“stupid”, “ignorant”), and spiritualizing (“the truckers represent truth”, “God’s brave ones”). I have no desire to debate this with you, I want only to remind you dear brothers and sisters, that we are called to be PEOPLE OF PEACE in all circumstances. We should be the world’s best listeners, discussion-ers (I just made English teachers cringe!), and perhaps in this situation, mediators.

Do I believe in Canada? Yes. Do I love my freedom to choose, to speak out respectfully, to protest, to vote, to worship? Absolutely. I respect and value Canadians who live into these. Should a Christian Canadian express their political opinions or for that matter any other opinion? For sure but I would recommend that the believer would take a moment to consider the following before venturing into any conversation:

Begin with a Nehemiah-type prayer (desperate, brief, quick and attuned to the Spirit): “Lord should I participate in this conversation? If so how?”

Who is in the “room” hearing me? A) Do I know where they stand with Jesus (because, before you make a good point, you are first of all responsible to point others to Jesus)? B) Is my contribution to the conversation drawing people closer to Jesus or giving them another reason to move away from Him?

Ephesians 4:1-6 check:

• Am I being humble or proud? What’s the difference, and how will I know which I am?
• Am I being gentle? Would others in the room consider me gentle?
• Am I being patient with views that are not my own, and with difficult people?
• Am I showing forbearance?

What is the best possible outcome of this conversation? What is the worst possible outcome of me being in this conversation?

Seldom is social media a good platform for constructive conversation! Almost never!

Today I read a proposal for Christian leaders in Ottawa to consider inviting government leaders and protest leaders to come to the table. This is exactly the stuff that a people of peace should think about, and pursue.

I have no desire to debate the convoy with you, but I do want to remind you, whether you support it or not, you represent the God of Peace, who invites you into a Covenant of Peace, through Jesus the Prince of Peace, who is all about the Gospel of Peace. PEACE!

Pastors, I just heard that only 8 of you have submitted your annual report! My team is standing by, excited to watch them pour in this week!


WHAT HAPPENS WHEN

Tuesdays: Cliff’s Notes
2nd Tuesday of each month: What’s Got You Thinking?
3rd Wednesday of each month: Get the Scoop with Lisa and Alison
4th Thursday of each month: Church Health Thursday
Message from Bishop Cliff: https://vimeo.com/518725147
Coffee with Jared: https://vimeo.com/533730644
Mystery Beverage with Marc: https://vimeo.com/504427854


ANNOUNCEMENTS
None this week

ORDINATION SERVICES
March 20 at 2:00 pm – Alyson Lauber – Lakeview FMC, Saskatoon, SK
June 12 at 2:00 pm – Erika Mills – Blue Mountain FMC, Thornbury, ON

Date and time TBA:
Benjamin Platz – Next Church, Kingston, ON

2022 FMCiC INTERNSHIP PROGRAM   https://www.fmcic.ca/intern-prog/

The FMCiC Internship Program exists to build healthy leaders for The Free Methodist Church in Canada and beyond.  We invite any local church interested in participating in the FMCiC internship program to review the detailed information on the website (see link above) and apply online.

The deadline to apply for a 2022 FMCiC-sponsored internship is FEBRUARY 28, 2022.

FOUNDATIONAL COURSES  http://www.fmcic.ca/foundational-courses/
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 3-5, 2022 – location TBA*
November 4-6, 2022, – location TBA*

Wesleyan Theology:
June 3-5, 2022 – location TBA*
November 4-6, 2022, – location TBA*

Also available:

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:
2022 Date and location TBA*

Personal and Church Stewardship: 
5-week online course – 2022 Start Date TBA
(* These course locations are selected based on where the majority of the participants reside – so please register early!)

2022 SCHOLARSHIPS  http://www.fmcic.ca/scholarships/


LEADERSHIP SCHOLARSHIP PLAN (LSP):
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.

February 15 is the deadline to apply for LSP for any courses taken during the winter semester of 2022.  The 2022 application forms and instructions are now available to download from the link above.  Please use the application forms marked “rev 2022.”


SPECIAL SCHOLARSHIPS:
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 2022 calendar year – apply online anytime from the link above.  Special Scholarships are awarded in late November/early December each year.

CONTINUING EDUCATION UNITS (CEUs)   https://www.fmcic.ca/introduction-to-continuing-education/
Ordained and Commissioned Ministers (except retirees) are to annually report Continuing Education Units (CEUs) acquired during each year.  Check the link above for information on CEUs, the report form and a list of examples of many different types of life-long learning that can be applied as CEUs.

Note:  For those who attend the fall Minister’s Conferences or the spring Regional Gatherings, add 6 hours of CEU credit for each event when you send in your annual CEU report.

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CHURCHES IN TRANSITION
Interviewing
Thornbury, ON – Blue Mountain Community Church

Church Profiles available
Contact Davika Dotson in the  Leadership Development Office to request a church profile – [email protected] or 416-240-7845   (deadline to apply in brackets)

Harrowsmith, ON – Harrowsmith FMC [full-time] (Feb 15)
Hilton Beach, ON – St. Joseph Island FMC [full-time] (Feb 15)
Saskatoon, SK – Lakeview FMC  [full-time] (Feb 22)
Warkworth, ON – Warkworth FMC [full-time] (Mar 1)

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.

Campbellford, ON – Campbellford FMC, (Rev. Jurgen Rausch-Transition Pastor)
Cloyne, ON – Pineview FMC
Frankford, ON – Frankford Community Church
Hamilton, ON – Rymal Road Community Church
New Westminster, BC – First FMC
Oshawa, ON – The Corner Church (Free Methodist /Church of the Nazarene) (Rev. Vic Stonehouse-Interim Pastor)
Richmond Hill, ON – Richmond Hill Chinese & English FM Churches (Rev. Louis Leung – Interim Pastor)
Sarnia, ON – New Horizons Community Church (Rev. Mary Lee DeWitt-Transition Pastor)


EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES

Associate Pastor – The Open Door
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