CliffsNotes – March 15, 2022

Belonging to the FMCiC (it’s Biblical and therefore, Essential): Part 1


What’s it mean for us to be a connected Church? What value is there in healthy denominationalism – Free Methodism in Canada?


1.     Your pastor has been interviewed by your Church family across the country, her theology has been scrutinized, his character has been examined, and they have been affirmed as pastors in the FMCiC. Myself, the other National Leadership Team members, the Board of Administration, and the Ministry of Education Guidance and Appointment (MEGAP) all BELIEVE in your pastor;
2.     You are not alone, but you belong to like-minded brothers and sisters in Christ around the world who identify as Free Methodists. Free Methodism is only one small part of the larger Body of Christ, so you belong to Body of Christ globally. Membership in a local Church is the visible identification with the universal body of Christ! In fact, there are no New Testament examples of Christians who were not members of a local Church. As a member of the Body, Free Methodists contribute to Kingdom building, with our unique God-given vision, passion and competencies. We are one part of the one Body, and you play a vital part in this “part”!
3.     Together we are stronger globally! Your local Church alone cannot be a significant presence in Sri Lanka, Ghana, India, then in all the places that International Child Care ministers, and all the places Tearfund ministers; but because you are a part of us, you are ministering in all these places!
4.     One independent local Church doing a land acknowledgement (and pursuing the other Truth & Reconciliation recommendations) is very good, but 138 churches across Canada united in being people of peace, and therefore committed to developing a new friendship with indigenous brothers and sisters, is exciting because it is what Gospel people do, and it is farther reaching than one local Church. It’s the difference between one person at a rally, versus 138!
5.     “How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity” (Psalm 133). There are very few examples in the world, in Canada, of healthy, effective, LOVING organizations that make a significant community difference. You belong to people (FM) who are committed to unity, so that others will know us by our love, and want what we have (which is a common theme in the book of Acts);
6.     You are safer doctrinally. Your pastor, or a rogue board cannot shift an FMCiC local Church from our Biblical moorings. Our Articles of Religion (chapter 1 of The Manual), are safeguarded by a national committee, and then the Free Methodist Church around the world. Something quite beautiful about that;
7.     Besides Intercultural Engagement opportunities (and responsibilities) as per #3 and #4 above, your FMCiC is:
  • Praying together: a national cohort of each local FM Church Prayer Point Person will be meeting monthly to learn to help your local Church develop a dynamic prayer ministry (starts May 2022);
  • Church Planting: we have many plants in Canada which you pray for and support and several just beginning. We supported the development of NEW LEAF and, according to plan, they have become an independent organization which we participate in;
  • Church Health: Your Church family has a Regional Coach ready to help with Ministry Plan building, healthy board, effective FMCiC structure, conflict, etc. These coaches have, in their short 3 years, made a significant impact on our churches. Church Health also has several “Church Health” surveys, and assistance for our churches in transition;
  • Leadership Development: Your pastor is a well cared for leader with learning opportunities, networks, accountability partner, subsidized counseling, ongoing ministers’ conferences, a “Pastors’ Health” survey, access to all NLT members, and more;
  • Together we are committed to developing (or as Methodists, rediscovering) a discipleship culture, and an evangelism culture. Your local Church leadership teams have been asked to have a 3-5 Year Ministry Plan that outlines these two foci (with a definition for each and strategic steps);
  • We have TASK FORCES (operating much like study commissions, in between General Conferences):

-LGBTQ2S+ Committee: The purpose of this committee is to implement the FMCiC’s Strategic Plan for equipping churches to minister more effectively to LGBTQ people. In addition to providing pastoral resources for churches;

-Intergenerational Ministries: Their mandate is to investigate how we can work together as a denomination to best recognize the value of building intergenerational faith communities and resource congregations in providing mentoring and discipling for the spiritual formation of children, youth, and families.

-Racial Justice and Ethnic Equity: In response to current realities, the FMCiC has created a task force that will: 1. Examine FMCiC “culture” including policy, and practice; and 2. Consider how FMCiC should respond to systemic racism in Canada.

  • We have TEAMS in place (or standing committees):

-Retired Ministers Team (to support, advocate, mobilize retired ministers);

-Personnel Team which will model effective human resource, or Personnel department structure and policy at a national level for our local churches;

-Generosity Team – have you visited the Generosity & Stewardship section on our website? It is rich with resources for your Church and personal edification. We also have a relationship with Advisors’ With Purpose to discuss end of life stewardship planning. As a believer you really need to have thought this through, and we have a free advisor who will help you click here to learn more. Pastors it’s time to re-introduce this opportunity to your Church family;

I’m proud to be a part of this movement. I am hoping that we have moved away from a poor ecclesiology that understands “Mississauga” as the “Head Office” far removed from the needs, and responsibilities of the local Church. Together, as members of local Church families, who are members of the FMCiC, we are stronger and we can help each other move forward.

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN

Tuesdays: Cliff’s Notes
2nd Tuesday of each month: What’s Got You Thinking?
4th Thursday of each month: Church Health Thursday


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

Tyndale University’s annual Wesley Studies Symposium on April 26:  \ »Sisters in the Spirit: Women in the Holiness and Pentecostal Traditions\ »https://www.tyndale.ca/seminary/wesley-studies/annual-symposium
The Lorne Park Foundation (https://lornepark.org/) has generously offered to sponsor 25 in-person and 25 online registrations for this event.  This offer is open to both clergy and laypersons on a first-come basis only until April 8.  If you are interested, notify Susan DePlanché at [email protected] as soon as possible and no later than April 8 to be put on the list.  If you register through Susan, do not register through the Tyndale link.  Be sure to indicate whether you are interested in the in-person or online version.  This event is worth 6 hours toward Continuing Education Units (CEUs).

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 – Trulls Road FMC, Courtice, ON
November 4-6, 2022, – location TBA*

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

Also available:

  • FMC-USA as a 7-week intensive online course: http://fmcusa.org/leadership/courses/ Wesleyan Theology [#74W] Dr. Robert Vaughan – start dates:  Feb 22, Apr 19, June 7, Jul 26, Sep 13, Nov 1

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 and Church 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!)

 

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.

October 15 is the deadline to apply for LSP for any courses taken during the summer and/or fall semesters 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 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:   https://fmcic.wufoo.com/forms/continuing-education-unit-ceu-report-form/

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.

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.

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CHURCHES IN TRANSITION
Interviewing

Hilton Beach, ON – St. Joseph Island FMC
Saskatoon, SK – Lakeview FMC
Thornbury, ON – Blue Mountain Community Church
Warkworth, ON – Warkworth FMC

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

Oshawa, ON – The Corner Church (Free Methodist / Church of the Nazarene) [full-time] (Mar 29)

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
Harrowsmith, ON – Harrowsmith FMC (Pastor Keith Deyo-Interim Pastor)
New Westminster, BC – First FMC
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

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