I have asked Bill Mains to outline what his call, commitment and ministry is amongst us and he has responded in the following piece. Church boards, congregational leadership, area / regional ministers, and their executives all have a role to play in the kind of ministry Bill is describing. It should however be noted that Bill, along with his team, have borne the brunt both in quantity and in many ways in depth of the issues around conflict and resolution that are often part of congregational life. Bill alone has done over 90 consultations and connections with churches. And we are profoundly indebted to Bill and Barbara for their willingness to serve in this kind of way.
Thanks so much Bill and the team you represent on behalf of us all.
INTERVIEW WITH BILL MAINS
- What is your position at CBWC and what do you do?
I am the Senior Consultant – Church Resourcing and Special Projects. This is a part-time, contracted position which reports directly to the Executive Minister and works with churches and Executive Staff to address matters concerning Conflict, Governance, Liability Risk Management (LRM) and Personnel/Human Resources (HR). I also carry out certain special assignments and projects on behalf of the Executive Minister.
2. What is your professional, work and educational background and what has been your involvement in CBWC church and denominational life?
I am a professional educator having spent 35 years in public education in British Columbia in Nanaimo and Prince George serving as a Teacher, School Principal, Director of Human Resources, Assistant Superintendent of Schools and Acting Superintendent. I hold B.Ed and M.Ed degrees from the University of Victoria and a Diploma in Ministry from Carey Theological College.
I have been a member of First Baptist churches in Nanaimo, Prince George and Calgary and have held a variety of church leadership positions including Board member, Moderator, Sunday School Superintendent, Adult Bible Teacher, Lay Preacher and Chair of several Search Committees. At the denominational level, I have been Moderator of the BC Area, President of the Convention of the Baptist Churches of BC, Carey Board Member and President of The Baptist Union of Western Canada. I have also been involved in two short-term CBM mission trips to Bolivia which involved teaching at the Bolivian Baptist Seminary in Cochabamba, church construction and Teacher Training in several locations with the Bolivian Baptist Union’s elementary and secondary schools. Following my retirement from the Prince George School District in the summer of 2000, I served as Interim Senior Pastor for some months at First Baptist Lethbridge.
3. What is your main focus for the work you do with CBWC and the churches?
My main focus is to advise and help pastors, elected leaders, churches and the denomination to successfully address issues that may occur within the four main areas noted above. Assistance and support has been given through direct conflict interventions (eg. Congregational Consultations, Leadership Consultations, Mediation and Facilitation); education and training (eg. production of manuals and polices, workshops, and seminars such as those offered at specific churches, Assemblies and through the William Carey Institute) and through encouraging and helping others in our CBWC family to become more involved in church resourcing work. For example, we now have three more people formally trained in conflict resolution. As well as myself, churches can also now call upon Debra-Jean Moore of Winnipeg, Allana Grauman of Edmonton and Marilyn Kaiser of Calgary for help; in LRM – Dave Holten and Glenn Rabuka are resource people who can provide advice and assistance in certain LRM areas; and in HR – other CBWC staff are being trained and supported in this specialty area. In Governance matters, I work directly with churches requesting help in this area and also frequently utilize resources (eg. sample Constitutions and By-laws) from a variety of our churches across our CBWC constituency. During my time with CBWC, I have worked in some resourcing capacity with over 100 of CBWC’s churches and agencies.
4. Tell us a little about your personal and family life?
I have been happily married for forty years to my wife, Barbara, and we presently live in Calgary. We have three daughters – one in Lethbridge, AB one in Bonnyville, AB and one in Heaven (our middle daughter was killed in 1987). We have seven grandchildren – 6 girls and a boy. We enjoy traveling, walking, gardening, hockey, our pets and church ministry. Barbara recently retired from her job as Office Administrator of FBC Calgary and we are hoping to eventually relocate to Oceanside on Vancouver Island sometime in the near future.
5. What do you like best about working with CBWC?
I appreciate that our denomination is working hard with our churches to advance the Gospel of Jesus Christ, to bring about human betterment and social justice and to be a positive and growing presence in Western Canada. I enjoy playing a part in helping CBWC to realize its mission of becoming…”a Christ-centred community of churches: inviting faith, acting in mercy and cultivating leaders.”
It is very stimulating, energizing and a pleasure to work with our Executive Minister and the other CBWC staff in helping our churches and our denomination to achieve their goals and objectives. I believe much progress is being made as our CBWC family becomes stronger and more effective in ministry. Praise be to God!