This week is a follow- up on the March issue of “Making Connections”. Last week we engaged in the annual New Pastor’s Orientation session. It was a wonderful time of fellowship and sharing.
These annual orientation sessions help people who are new to ministry within the denomination find their bearings. They learn more about our Baptist identity through sessions that look at our Baptist roots and church traditions. They find out about the many resources and resource people available to support their work in areas as diverse as Children and Family ministries, ministries to the homeless and short-term missions. They also learn about the ministerial and administrative services available, such as conflict resolution, loans or Pensions & Benefits administration.
Perhaps most importantly, our new pastors get to know the family they are becoming part of. Through fellowship, they connect with senior CBWC staff as well as with other pastors who share their interests and ministries, beginning a conversation that allows them to offer each other mutual support, resources and encouragement. It is an important early step in our journey together with God.
New pastors attending in 2009 were: Joel Amzil, Pieter and Brina Basson, Neil Bell, Sara Bywaters-Baldwin, Bill Cottrill, Tyler Crawford, Chris Hiebert, Shaun Jessop, Derek Kaemingk, Gloria Lee, Pierre Leroux, Lou Leventhal, Peter Ma, Brandon Milan, Sharon Onciul, Jared Patterson, Chris Pollock, Cherian Poonnoose, Pam Reichenbach, Betty Reitan, Robin Ross, Joel Russell-MacLean, Dan Rutherford, Bobbi Salkeld, Clarke Scheibe, Thomas Stevens, Travis Stewart, John Thwaites, Hrengsa Vanlalsiama, Graeme Watt, and Chris and Anne Wilson.
We thank God for them and rejoice in their ministry among us.
I am also thankful for the sheer diversity of our folk. We had Robin, Graham and Betty from a large multi-staff church (Trinity-Sherwood Park, Alberta). We had former Welsh and English folk, like Neil from West Vancouver and Tom from Okanagan Falls. Pierre works at the Mustard Seed Hope Farm in Duncan and Chris from Mustard Seed Victoria. We had Clarke, originally an American from L’Abri Fellowship on Bowen Island and Hrengsa from Southeast Asia and Winnipeg. Travis Stewart roomed with me and Gary Nelson in McKenzie 32 years ago and Dan Rutherford, another Vancouver Islander comes from Gateway.
Paddy Ducklow was new to our mix as he spoke on boundary and border issues in the pastoral relationships. Claudia Wakeman piloted the contact and registration process and Shelby Gregg was the on-site host and navigator. Thanks Shelby and Claudia so very much. We shall miss Sam Breakey’s speaking and encouraging of us. We are thankful for Sam, Brian Stelck, Ken Thiessen, John Prociuk, Rob Olgivie, Sam Chaise, Axel Schoeber, Dennis Shierman, David Holten, David Connop, Faye Reynolds, Rod Olson, Mandi Hecht, Nadia VanderKuip, Claire Mclean, Lynn and Larry Pearce, Stu Dinsmore and Bill Mains who all contributed to our sessions.
P.S. Check out the group picture in the “Making Connections” issue.