Tom Wilson, the American cartoonist once said; “Many of us are more capable than some of us…but none of us is as capable as all of us.” This report is really a celebration of our churches collectively mobilizing to make disciples of the 15 million people in our region. I thank God for every pastor and church family who generously join with us in this gospel centered cause of planting churches, developing leaders, and catalyzing church health. Advancements, by God’s grace are being made, and the power of your partnership is working – praise the Lord!
As I debrief over 2017 here are some highlights;
* We continue to be encouraged with Stronger Together donations. Stronger Together givings totalled $701,495.71 from 169 churches, which is up again from last year’s total of $652,493 from 158 churches.
* Through church plants and recognitions, 8 new churches were added. We are committed to planting 21 new churches by 2020.
* FEB Central’s ‘Church Planting Advancement Foundation’ is now in place. At the time of writing we have donations of $30,000 and one bequest - yes, we’re just starting! Our vision is to raise several million dollars to help sustain and propel church planting for many years.
* The Congregational Vitality Pathway has begun in five of our churches. Andrew Hurrell, consultant and certified CV Pathway coach, facilitates this process of revitalization.
* Revitalization continues to be an emphasis. Through a variety of tools (i.e., TLM, consultations, networks, rebirth mergers) we have 21 churches that have experienced renewal and revitalization.
* We are grateful for Bob Parks, stepping up as our interim Leadership Development Director. With Godfrey transitioned to Thousand Islands Baptist, we continue to help our churches with profiles/transitions and internships. This past year we have placed 11 two-year, full time interns. We have also had15 leadership equipping events.
* Jenn Martin has had significant ministry as our WM Director. She facilitated four workshops, a leader’s retreat, and offers on-going discipling for women and resources for women’s ministries.
* WMI, with Judy Cairns leading, is having a banner year with 25 students enrolled, which is a record attendance.
* Jeremy Best, along with the Youth Ministry Summit and four retreats, initiated ‘The Gathering’ - a youth pastors retreat held up at Muskoka Woods’ Leadership Studio. Over 20 attended and were truly refreshed.
* Jack Flietstra officially commenced his ministry as our first District Shepherd overseeing the 76 churches of our South Eastern and Northern District. His focused connection with these churches is already bearing fruit.
Yes, we are experiencing the truth of Ecclesiastes 4:9; ‘Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labour.’ As we continue to work together, looking to the Lord to lead us, we can continue to multiply our impact for Christ and His church.
In all things may God be praised,
FEB Central Regional Director