Making Connections January 2023

Things Happening in January

Kurios Online Gala

Can you believe that KURIOS is already completing its third year? There is so much to be grateful for! On Sunday February 5, 2023, you are invited to a one-hour, online celebration of all that God has done through KURIOS. It’s also an opportunity to hear about brand-new initiatives developing over the next year! 

Here is some of what you can expect to experience at the gala:

  • KURIOS LIVE from Guatemala 
  • Jasper – Becoming Canada’s only Christian Gap Year in a National Park
  • “KURIOS Crew… Who Knew?” Gameshow
  • Special Live Musical Performance by Kurios Alumni 
  • Week-Long Giving Campaign Launch
  • Prize Draw for KURIOS Merch
  • And more…

Please join us at the gala from the comfort of your living room (or anywhere with an internet connection). Even though this is an online event, you’ll need a ticket to attend. To secure your FREE ticket visit 

 Partner Spotlight: HopeHill

Still Standing, And Walking Away

In our organization we choose an annual “theme” to keep us focused through the year. In 2022 we chose the word “resiliency.. I interpreted it to mean “still standing”—after whatever we have been through. Yes, we are “still standing” as we closed 2022. I have a pilot friend who tells me that the definition of a good landing in the aviation industry is “any landing that you can walk away from.” Whether he’s accurate or just being funny, I choose to claim that the ending of 2022 was a good landing for us at Hopehill, too! We are still standing and walking away from last year and heading into 2023 with purpose. 

Things that we have noticed in the Senior Care world in 2022? Here are some.

  1. Seniors are living longer, and getting older. You hear flip phrases like, “70 is the new 50. 80 is the new 60.” They are not 100% accurate, but there is truth. People are living longer. 80 is nothing. 90 is admirable. Now, you get past 100 and we pay attention to your birthdays! Our oldest resident is 105.
  2. Younger seniors are NOT getting older. Do you remember when junior high students desperately wanted to be part of senior high activities? And senior high students didn’t want it to happen? Well, the reverse is happening today in the Senior Care world. Younger seniors DON’T want to associate with senior seniors. And senior seniors desperately want the younger seniors to come on board and carry the mail. Is that true in your church?
  3. Seniors, like much of society, are running out of patience after the last 30 months of Covid, etc. I don’t think they are as short-tempered as the general society, but we can see it in our midst.
  4. Inflation is a real concern for seniors. All of our residents live on a true fixed income. Paying $20 more for groceries this month than last month is a noticeable amount. Most don’t drive vehicles, but seeing gasoline prices near $2.00 per litre brings alarm.
  5. Spiritual Care. Hopehill is a place where many Christians work. About 1/3 of our residents have a personal faith in Christ. But many don’t. And that’s okay. We like to say that we are “invitational and not obligational” at Hopehill. By that, we mean you are invited to live here. You don’t have to be a Christian to be part of us. You don’t have to become a Christian to stay with us. You are free to live, and make your own observations. Two things come to mind from 2022. One, that we have been most effective when we pay attention to individuals in a caring, compassionate way…as we think Jesus would. We don’t fix problems. We don’t overrule opinion. We don’t demand change. We listen. And if helpful, we point to a better way. Second, in their own way as per the Spirit’s work, people take steps when they are ready. Two individuals had a significant step of faith in 2022, professing a desire to live for Jesus in a personal way. The new birth is real. We were so honoured to be midwives in the experience.

How are things looking your Senior Ministry world? Individually? Collectively? Is there anything we can do from this corner to be helpful? One of the unintended consequences of Covid was a huge increase in communication through technology, specifically Zooming. If someone from Hopehill could be helpful to you or your situation either through a talk, or a presentation, or a training piece, please don’t hesitate to ask. We’d love to help.

-Jamey S. McDonald, Chief Executive Officer

 PS. Our annual “theme” for 2023 is “renewal.” We think we can do better in the next year!

Mountain Standard Regional Newsletter

January 2023

Mental Health Resources

Happy New Year! January is always such an exciting time. There is a feeling of freshness and new beginnings as we look forward to a brand-new year. 

Thanks to Bell Let’s Talk day and awareness about Seasonal Affective Disorder, January is also a time of the year where the conversations around mental health are prominent. The CBWC has covered this topic numerous times in the past, as we believe it is of vital importance. 

In 2020, we published an article about Sanctuary Mental Health, a non-profit organization that provides free resources for churches to help them learn more about the issues and be better equipped to help others.

As CEO of Sanctuary Mental Health Ministries, Daniel Whitehead said mental health is something we all struggle with and all need to be talking about.

“We tend to talk about flourishing mental health or languishing mental health. We all live in that spectrum, and we move up and down it. We can move up and down it in a day, let alone within seasons,” Daniel said. 

“It’s about acknowledging simply that we all have mental health and depending upon our biological makeup, our circumstances, and what’s going on in our lives and in the world will dictate whether our mental health is flourishing or languishing in any moment.”

We also interviewed CBWC’s own Tim Colborne, author of the thought-provoking memoir Directions for Getting Lost—The Spiritual Journey Through the Wilderness of Mental Health. Tim’s perspective of a Christian who struggles to reconcile faith with mental health issues is powerful and definitely worth revisiting. 

Winter can be especially tough on people, especially here in Canada where our cold weather can isolate people in their homes. We discussed how to combat this by embracing winter, and all the coziness that can come with, summed up in the Danish term Hygge. 

The message we want to convey with all these articles is that struggling with mental health is not uncommon. You are not alone. It is not a shameful thing or a failure in any way. The church, as a whole, needs to be a place people can turn to and trust. Make sure you check out the resources available, so you and your church have the tools necessary to be a light to those who need it in this next year. 

We also want to encourage you to care for yourself. Check in with others, and be open and honest with where you are at. It can be hard to share and be vulnerable in this way, but the beauty of belonging to Christ is that you are a part of a large family of believers, and you don’t need to go through life alone. 

Keep your eye open for our February Making Connections, where we will be discussing Youth and how to engage with them in the Mental Health discussion.

All You Have To Do Is Ask!

A testimony about how to take advantage of being a member of CBWC

Being part of CBWC comes with many perks, one of them being the vast amount of resources and support available to pastors and members alike. 

John Block, a new treasurer at White Rock Baptist Church, discovered this firsthand. After becoming a board member in 2020, John took it upon himself to find out what the CBWC is all about and why it is a valued ministry to support. Now, he wants to encourage other churches to take advantages of what CBWC has to offer. 

“Many Churches have gone through difficult times in recent years. Covid has been very hard on so many churches; they are in need of lots of support. The staff at CBWC have much to offer. All you have to do is ask.”

When John and his wife, Rose, became members of White Rock Baptist Church in 2019, he knew very little about CBWC. He didn’t understand the role of the organization nor the benefits of being part of a broader denomination.

After becoming the financial liaison to the board of directors, John took note of the amount of money that was being paid to CBWC and started to ask questions. “As a business owner and investor, I spend a significant amount of time reviewing financial information, always paying close attention to operating expenses.”

John began his research of CBWC by checking out the website and learned about the various support programs that were available to churches. He then connected with Victor Ku, Director of Administration and Finance.

“I definitely bombarded Victor with countless questions.” They included questions about the relationship between CBWC and member churches, the budget process, ministry planning and administration, and many more. “It was quite the education.”

 When John became Treasurer for White Rock Baptist earlier this year, he contacted Victor with questions about the role and responsibilities of the Treasurer. He also spent time reviewing CBWC’s Treasurer’s Manual which Victor had forwarded and found it be a fantastic resource.

 John also reached out to Louanne Haugan our Director of Communications and Development, Jerry Wang (our Operations Manager), and Larry Schram (his regional minister) for additional support and guidance.

 “The staff at CBWC offers churches a tremendous amount of support. All we have to do is pick up the phone and ask. There’s also lots of good information on the Website. If you have questions, the staff is always there to help.”

The CBWC is here to help! If you are curious about what resources are available, or are facing a difficult situation in your church, there are many people who are available and wanting to help you! Start by contacting us by phone or email! 

Meet the JMN Team for 2023!

The CBWC’s Justice & Mercy Network seeks to inspire and equip churches in their theological vision of the kingdom of God so that we all pursue right relationships with God, with self, with others, and with the world. We seek to provide a thoughtful and wise social analysis of injustice, and to offer various resources that help inform decisions about justice.

For more information and up-to-date articles, visit our website,

Meet the JMN team for 2023!

Jodi Spargur: Jodi co-chairs the Justice and Mercy Network as well as directing two initiatives known as Healing at the Wounding Place and Red Clover Initiatives. She works among CBWC and other churches catalyzing local, sustainable connections with Indigenous communities for the purposes of healing and justice. For fun, Jodi loves to get outside in any capacity and has a special love of cooking over an open fire.

David Nacho: David was born and raised in Bolivia and immigrated to Canada in 1997. After finishing his degree in Communications at Simon Fraser University, David pursued a Master of Divinity (2004) and a Master of Theology at Regent College (2009). He is currently pursuing a Ph.D. program at the Oxford Centre for Mission Studies. He has served with Canadian Baptist Ministries in Latin America in various positions, including youth ministry, community development, church mobilizing and, most recently, theological education at graduate and grassroots levels.

Chuck Harper: Over the past forty years Chuck has been involved in ministry, from volunteering to founding or helping to found a number of ministries—beginning with founding the Mustard Seed Street Ministry in Calgary—to walking beside hurt and broken youth with YFC and now walking beside hurt and broken men and women struggling with addiction, mental illness and poverty. He founded North Okanagan Community Chaplaincy ten years ago, based upon filling gaps in the community. 

Jenna Hanger: Jenna is the Senior Editor and Writer for CBWC. She helps the JMN with their communication needs and maintaining the website. When she isn’t writing for CBWC, she can be found helping on her family ranch in Alberta, writing novels, and raising Labrador pups as well as her two young daughters.

Faye Reynolds: Faye is a retired pastor with the CBWC who helps churches submit applications for sponsoring refugees as the CBWC is a Sponsorship Agreement Holder with the CBWC.  She lives in Lethbridge with her husband, Stephen and their 2 daughters, Steffi and Teddi.

Mark Doerksen: Mark has been ministering within the CBWC in Winnipeg since 1992. He has been the Heartland Regional Minister since 2014. Mark finished his D.Min degree from Carey Theological College in 2020, and enjoys his work with the JMN. Mark enjoys helping people, a good book, good music, and is working at refining his carpentry skills. Mark and his wife Mary reside in Winnipeg. 

Jeremy Keay: Jeremy is a youth, young adult and outreach minister at First Baptist Church Edmonton. He is grateful to work with a team of thoughtful and creative people who seek understanding and insight in complicated times. Jeremy loves wholehearted conversations which lead to better practices and relationships.

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Making Connections is the monthly newsletter of the CBWC.