OCN – Ontario Conference News – November 20, 2020

 

 

2021 to be a Transformative Year in Ontario Conference

January 9 Announced as Conference-wide Day of Fasting and Prayer

In a brief yet profound parable found in Luke 13:6-9, the owner of a fig tree wanted to cut it down because it was not bearing fruit after three years. The keeper of the vineyard asked for one more year to dig around it and fertilize it. Then, if it didn’t bear fruit, he would cut it down.

On Tuesday, in a joint meeting of the Conference’s Strategic Planning and Evangelism/Church Growth committees, President Mansfield Edwards compared our conference to the fig tree. “If a tree is not producing fruit, it is not producing seeds. If the tree is not producing seeds, then there is no growth, there is no multiplication.”

By God’s grace, even with restrictions on in-person church attendance and baptism, we have celebrated 277 baptisms and 67 professions of faith in 2020. However, there is much room for growth, as Executive Secretary Jakov Bibulovic revealed at our September Workers’ Meeting.

In September, Bibulovic grouped our churches into four categories: 1) multiplying, 2) growing, 3) plateauing, and 4) declining. In an updated report on Tuesday, he noted that most (66%) of our 175 churches are plateauing (47%) or declining (19%), with the remaining 34% growing. These figures are comparable to those of the North American Division (NAD), 58% declining churches, and the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Canada (SDACC), 63% declining.

Edwards stated, “2021 has to be a significant turning point. We have to start working around the tree, fertilizing and pruning it. One year of directors, pastors, elders, local church officers and members digging around, watering and fertilizing will show [significant] results.”

Jan. 9 Conference-wide Day of Fasting and Prayer

Edwards then announced that the second Sabbath of January, the 9th, will be set aside as a virtual day of worship, focusing on prayer and fasting for our conference. After defining our reality, the administration will cast a transformative vision, challenging all members to rally together to turn these churches around and bear much fruit for the Kingdom.

The rationale for this special day arose from Joel 1:14, “Declare a holy fast; call a sacred assembly. Summon the elders and all who live in the land to the house of the Lord your God, and cry out to the Lord.” Amidst overwhelming challenges, including a plague of locusts, a coming drought and a warring enemy, the prophet Joel asked Israel to gather together, set aside any distractions and pray. God is calling us to do the same.

“[On the 9th, we will] layout our goal of transitioning, transforming, restoring and reviving our churches; moving them from declining, dying, and plateauing to churches that truly represent the bride of Christ,” Edwards continued. Then, he said, “We must place this [vision] in His hands and ask Him to use us, bless us, humble us and help us to lean on Him whose power never fails.”

Finally, he referred to God’s transformative power and grace, as per 2 Chronicles 7:14 (AMP). “If My people, who are called by My Name, humble themselves, and pray and seek (crave, require as a necessity) My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear [them] from heaven, and forgive their sin and heal their land.”

Did you miss it?
Watch last week’s Virtual Week of Prayer for inspiration and devotional time. All messages are available here.

 

Hi Friends,One of the best ways to improve your health is to eat more greens, and the easiest way is to drink your greens. Green smoothies are powerhouses of nutrition. They pack a wallop of vitamins, minerals and proteins–yes proteins! It doesn’t have to be summer to enjoy the healing effects of this Summerlicious Green Smoothie! Drink up, and enjoy!

Blessings to you and your family,
Mike and René Lemon

You Can Still Watch This Year’s
Summit on Abuse

For your convenience, we’ve archived this important training video on both our website and Facebook page.

This year’s topics included:

  • Abuse in Faith Communities – Mary DeMuth
  • Church Toolkit: Practical Tips & Resources for Safe Churches and Schools – Rene Drumm
  • How to Protect Children and Youth – Ingrid Slikkers
  • Digging out of the Pit of Spiritual Abuse – Doug Tilstra

Click to Watch on the Website!
Click to Watch on Facebook!

Love Shouldn’t Hurt.
Join Us to Help Stop the Violence!

The Counselling Initiative: As you know, 2020 has been rough for many people. To address this, we have partnered with some Adventist counsellors to provide 50% off of therapy fees for the first three visits. This initiative is for women in our churches & communities that struggle financially to get the mental health support they need or don’t have insurance coverage for professional counselling. To access the listing, please email Ruth @ rweidner@AdventistOntario.org.  If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact Ruth.





Ontario Conference values you as a member of our worldwide community.
If you have a prayer request, please let us know!
Click here to submit your request.
Click here for a COVID-19 prayer.

Visit covid19.adventistontario.org for other departmental resources.

Watch this video for more information on GAME PLAN.

Click here to join the above Zoom event on Sunday, November 21 at 8:00 a.m.

Click here to join the above Zoom event on Sunday, November 22 at 3:00 p.m.

Our annual camp meeting will be virtual this year due to the pandemic measures. God has graciously chosen His manservant, Pastor Pako Mokgwane, to speak on a befitting theme, “In Times Like These.”

View camp meeting live at:
Ontario African Adventist YouTube page
https://www.facebook.com/ontarioafricanadventist

 

ADRA Canada Job Postings

ADRA Canada (the Adventist Development and Relief Agency in Canada) is the Canadian relief and development agency of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Click below for positions currently open.Finance Manager
Facilities Management
Accounting Assistant

School: Crawford Adventist Academy
Posted: September 2, 2020
Job Title: Senior Kindergarten Teaching Assistant
Deadline: Until filled
Description: Crawford Adventist Academy (Main Campus) is seeking a dynamic, creative Christ-like individual to work as a Senior Kindergarten Teaching Assistant for the 2020-2021 school year. This individual must provide care and guidance to Senior Kindergarten children under the guidance of the Senior Kindergarten teacher. This individual must love working with children and engage them in activities to stimulate and develop their spiritual, intellectual, physical, and emotional growth. CAA Main is located in Willowdale, Ontario.

Visit this link anytime for more information and other job postings with the Ontario Conference Education Department: https://catnet.adventist.ca/employment/joblist.php?conf=34

This year changed the way our church views evangelism. Last year, digital evangelism seemed like an option. But when the pandemic hit, it became necessary for us to switch to online means. If you have been impressed by the Holy Spirit to do more online, these courses by the Center for Online Evangelism are a great way to start. If you know of another church member, relative, or friend who has a gift for online ministry, be sure to let them know of this great opportunity. The investment you make in these courses will be helping others become online missionaries! Find out more here: https://learn.centerforonlineevangelism.org/

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