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Sharing Christ Joyfully

On February 8, Emmanuel Barrie hosted one of the biggest parties of the year as guests from all over the region gathered for Night to Shine.

Tim Tebow’s Night to Shine is a world-wide prom night experience, centred on God’s love, for people with special needs. Over 650 proms happening all over the world on one special night. Check out the video here to see all the fun

This was Emmanuel Barrie’s second year hosting Night to Shine, and it’s no small undertaking. The evening included 115 guests, 240 volunteers, hundreds of hours of preparation, and it was all over in just three hours. So, why do it?

Value.

Josh Davy says that Emmanuel Barrie wants their special needs community to know that they are made in the image of God, and they have value in the eyes of the Saviour and in the eyes of the church. 
They hope that Night to Shine demonstrates in some small way the lavish love of the Saviour, and provides a way for them to connect with their community. 
Parents are also invited to Night to Shine – they enjoy great food and conversation in the fireside respite room, and Emmanuel Barrie uses this as another strategic opportunity for the caring church family to talk with parents and to offer words of prayer and encouragement.

One thing they have noticed is that parents of older children with special needs sometimes struggle to know where they fit into the church, and they stop attending altogether. In fact, one local mom had felt unable to attend services because of her son’s level of need. She was overjoyed to receive a personal invitation to Night to Shine, and to know she has a church community who cared about her and her son.

Emmanuel Barrie seeks to love God deeply, love others authentically, and share Christ joyfully. They believe that the gospel is the answer of hope for people who understand brokenness in the world. People are hungry for the gospel, and this is an opportunity for them to live out the message of Jesus Christ.

What are some of the ways your church is living out the gospel of Jesus Christ? Does your church have strategic ways of shining hope into the world? I’d love to talk to you about it, so send me a note and let’s connect.

Bob Flemming
Regional Director