My Community Outreach & Institutional Chaplaincy Praise Report
Here is a list of recent developments in my ministry department since the church amalgamation. There have been some new and exciting ministry opportunities that have emerged amidst our new church’s adjustments, challenges and changes. I really like the staff, board and congregation of Westminster Chapel. I am believe that I am gradually adapting to the new environment and settling into my new role and responsibilities successfully. Thank for all the support along the journey. Keep praying for us all to be a church that make a gospel-impact on the people of Toronto.
People in our church did a great job serving God together by blessing our neighbours in Jesus’ name through:
2. Roncesvalles Polish Festival Outreach Tent Days.
3. Food & Clothing Bank Work and Donations.
4. Toronto Star “Santa Claus Fund” Christmas Gift Box Deliveries.
5. Prayer Walk Teams.
6. In December, SIM Canada and Westminster Chapel secured an MOU for the Chang’s “Culture Connexions” vision to serve the Church through cultivating intercultural character and ethics as foundational to Kingdom living, valuing the reciprocal blessing of intercultural relationship, and envisioning God-inspired blessing among diverse neighbours and communities.
7. In January, I plan to attend and recruit people to the relaxed and informative “Searching For Truth” course. This is good chance for skeptics, spiritual seekers or new believers to explore the basics of Christianity. It is led by my colleagues Joe Boot and Scott Masson at 9 Hewitt Ave on Tuesday evenings at 7pm and a meal is provided.
Thankfully, God has opened a door for me to have ongoing Christian services in new areas. Pray for me to make good relationships with everybody so I can know how to best serve spiritual needs among the following people:
1. Correctional Service of Canada at the Keele Centre (300 Keele St. at Annette) and possibly elsewhere too.
Rev. Harry Nigh and Rick Arsenault have a lot of experience and will train me to serve well in this context. I first got involved with prison ministry in Kingston during the recent Grey Cup week festivities. Athletes In Action Canada and Prison Fellowship Canada arranged events with the CSC Chaplains to bring CFL players to speak with inmates. During these visits, we spoke to inmates at three prisons and twice to athletes at Queens University.
With the support and training of experienced staff like Kevin Edelbrock, I looking forward with humble confidence to this service opportunity! The team has 13 home Sundays (April through August) in which they need a chapel service (a 15-minute mini-sermon / devotional). The Sunday games are at 1pm. I’ll be at the park a few hours before game time to set up chapel, see ball park staff, front office people, players & coaches, do chapel (one for the visiting team, one for the home team and then dropping by to see the umpires). Sometimes there are 3 guys in attendance, sometimes there are 15 or more. The Jays have a lot of new faces so I’ll be building it from the ground up. As well, I’ll strongly encourage a mid-week Bible study of some type for the players and one-on-one meetings with the guys.
There is also an oversight role to this as well, and some travel. As a Major League Chaplain, I’ll be overseeing each of the 7 minor league teams. I’ll visit two minor league teams per year to see the chaplain in action. As well, I’ll stay in touch with the others and you would be a resource to them. I already met and enjoyed a lunch with Chaplain Joe Ciffa in Buffalo, the Jays’ AAA team. I am looking forward to a conference with Baseball Chapel in Dallas (Feb 10) and building relationships during Spring Training in Dunedin (March 3, 10, 17). I will know more about who wants/needs what and who I can rely on to assist me as time passes and trust develops. Trust-building takes time and communication over periods of trial and error. I may need help from my church with things like discipleship support for interested Spanish speakers as well as all the interested women and children. You can read more about the ministry at their website or in the PDF document: BaseballChapelPresentation
For the fame of Jesus’ name,