The 39th Banff Pastor’s and Spouses Conference was a very encouraging time. Our theme verse was simply Psalm 115:1 – Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to your name give glory, for the sake of your steadfast love and your faithfulness!
Our Bible studies, by Loralyn Lind, focussed on that particular verse, but particularly its first phrase – Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to your name give glory. And even more specific to that, Loralyn spoke of the glory of God. It was a deeply encouraging experience as she encouraged us, in fact exhorted us, not to be so absorbed in ourselves, but in fact that which is the reflected glory of God in the creation, others, ourselves, and the presence and power of the Holy Spirit.
David Wells, the General Superintendent of the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada, invited us to see the functional estrangement of Canadian society and culture from the faith. The striking experience that so few who have ever seen the inside of the Bible, let alone embraced the notion of a Jesus with whom relationship is possible. David gave us an overview of Canadian faith and culture, challenging the church to respond to the hunger and ambivalence of both secular and Christian society. He encouraged us to abandon our old apologetic and engage people relationally in new and powerful ways.
Harry Gardner, former Executive Minister of Atlantic Baptists of Canada, and President of Acadia Divinity College, spoke to us in both plenary and workshop sessions about the foundations and disciplines of spiritual exercise. Harry is a wonderful raconteur with a deep love of the church in all its warts and foibles. He was particularly insistent on articulating that in our understanding of spiritual direction that “one size did not fit all”. All of these speakers were a complete delight to experience. They deeply encouraged and were extremely well received.
They will be available online in the next few weeks and I will let you know when that occurs. We will also encouraged to have something very new at Banff – that is Leland Klassen, a comedian, and Katie and Jason Leussink, the two worship leaders.
Presentations were also made by Carey and CBWC Foundation. CBM staff introductions and youth resources group were also presented.
Our thanks go to Heather Thomson who did all the work in organising this. Many thanks also go to Louanne Haugan, Sharon Onciul, Cindy Emmons, Amber Baker, Bob Thomson, and Jim King for all their work.
Many thanks to those of you who prayed for us during this time. We were very encouraged by your support.
We also launched our newest Partnerships and Possibilities. It will be coming to your church very soon, and we encourage you to prayerfully consider our ministries.