Slideshow image

Its December 31st.  A tradition in many homes is to look back and take stock in what the previous year held.  So too, as a faith family, it is perhaps worthwhile to similarly participate in a review of the year 2019:


We headed into the new year with a significant administrative change in how we communicated with and organized our volunteers. The move to Planning Center has not always been an easy one - but it has helped us better navigate the overwhelming task of communicating with the 108 regular volunteers within our community.  A year later, many of our ministry leaders can't even imagine how we managed before.  


After a long year of blurry projections, we finally had our new projection system installed.  Wow.  Clear letters and bright colours.  It has not been confirmed, but it feels as though the singing got louder when the projections got better.


After two years of prep and a series of townhall style meetings, at our Annual General Meeting we approved a full revision of our church Bylaws.  Good order and clarity take time, but we are grateful to the many volunteers, especially our Bylaw Committee, who gave time to see this project through to completion.


For three weeks in a row we hosted a small but dedicated group of parents at our Parent's Table.  We fed the families a meal thanks to some amazing volunteers, and we raised some quality discussion thanks to some of our partners at Arbour Counselling.  

April also was the month we said a big thank you to our retiring Office Administrator, Helen Reitsma.  Her time and dedication to this faith community is not the kind of thing you easily find words to capture.  Helen did an excellent job of carrying our office through the past seasons and leaving it in a good position to move forward too.

Our new Church Leadership Team met to get to know one another and to commit to the role of directing and protecting the vision and ministry of the church. 

Easter was an event for our whole community as we relocated our service that morning to the Dave Dunet Theatre at Oak Bay Highschool.  It was a joyous occassion to hear the story of Easter reflected on by some of the members of our faith community - and was topped off with a 90th birthday cake too!


Many gathered together on a Saturday to care for some of the Spring Cleaning chores at our facility and property. At the same time as we prepared our facility, we were also seeking to prepare to expand our staff with the beginning of a search for a new full time position of Ministry Manager.

Some of our folks got their hands dirty and their hearts filled as they served up at the work weekends at Camp Imadene to help prepare for the summer camping season.

Our young adults gathered to play ball and to camp - and in all things to encourage one another in their faith journeys.


The Island Alliance Women's retreat was led and attended by many of our ladies at Camp Imadene. The companionship and challenge was an encouragement to many.

We began a sermon series on the Gospel of Mark - a fast paced, deeply passionate telling of the good news of Jesus. 

We also attempted to make it easier for those who give generously to our community financially to do so from wherever they are, offering an online giving option on our website that can be set up for one time or recurring giving with an easy click-through format. 

We trained new and young leaders to be a part of our Daycamp leadership team - using online training opportunities and in person coaching. 


We focussed much of our energies on two camping opportunities: Daycamp and Camp Imadene.  Daycamp was a small but well received venture with a strong focus on inviting kids to spend time in God's story and to personally respond to the leadership of Jesus.

Many of our members stepped up to serve for a week or more during the summer at Camp Imadene.  In particular, many rallied around the leadership of Matthew Martin and Josie DeGreef as they Directed for Intermediate Coed2.  Many children responded favourably to the good news of Jesus, and even more had awakened a willingness to look for God's activity in their lives.


We hosted an evening with International Workers, Lorne and Kathy-Lu White, from Taiwan.  It was a good opportunity to see how our Global Advance Fund can practically connect to the mission of Jesus around the globe.

We heard from Cam Aitken, the New Venture leader of Esquimalt Community Youth.  His connection with our faith community goes back a long way - and is being carried forward too, as several of our community have volunteered to serve alongside Cam, reaching into the Esquimalt region.

We also became newly aware of the construction next door, as the building finally made its way out of the ground and went up, up, up.

With grateful hearts we finalized the paperwork around our new hire, Rebekah Hagan Ahenda, who would begin her position as Ministry Manager in mid-October!


For three Sundays in September we hosted lunches for newcomers to our faith community.  This was an excellent time of connection and an easy way for some new attenders to get further connected through small groups and service opportunities.

We held our annual Church Picnic indoors with Board Game fun due to the rains.  It was still fun.  There was still food.  It was still a picnic.  

We rebooted our small groups and invested in our Small Group Leaders with a morning of training. We currently have 12 groups that serve women, men, young adults, 55+, those who want to be challenged, those new to faith, and those who are seeking answers.  


We hosted again our city wide Operation Christmas Child kickoff event - and we also launched into our own church campaign.  We set a stretch goal of packing 300 shoeboxes, and also asked God to double the efficacy of the shoeboxes we prepared.

We held the third baby shower of the year, as we had a new-born explosion - what fun and joy it is to rally around young families! Alongside these kinds of celebrations, we also gratefully celebrated baptism on our Thanksgiving Sunday.  The opportunity to see Jesus' story at work among us is always treasured.

We welcomed the long-awaited Bekah!  Our new Ministry Manager arrived, and quickly began to lend her energy and skill to moving the mission of the church forward.


We unveiled a vision for a renovation and expansion plan On This Site through a series of meetings and drop ins.  In faith, we have committed to explore the first step of this plan, and in hope we pray we will find favour in our community and municipality as we seek to pursue the full proposal.  The ultimate goal is to create a facility on our current site that will enable us in our mission to make Jesus known among us, around us, beyond us for the next 60 years.

We exceeded our Operation Christmas Child goal and sent 302 shoeboxes to carry our love to children abroad.

We hosted a weekend for Spiritual Renewal and Soul Care with Assistant District Superintendant Brian Derksen.  We worshiped, practised Lectio, Embraced Silence and Solitude, and made space for God to have His first word with us.  

While here, Brian also led our Church Leadership Team through a Board training module that will help us continue the path of embracing a more sustainable approach to leadership through growth and transition.


We engaged an architect to work with our Property committee to move forward our On This Site Phase 1 work.  

We entered into a season of waiting and anticipation through Advent.  We sang, prayed, hoped, and gathered to celebrate the joy-filled truth that Jesus has come, is come, and will come again!  


We have embraced many opportunities throughout 2019 to be God's people - to love, to welcome, to gather, to trust, to reach, to give generously, to bring Light to the world.  

As we look to 2020 we raise three questions before the Lord: 

What have you been preparing us for during this past season?  

Where will you be leading us today so that we may be found faithful tomorrow?

How best can we bring glory to You as we seek to make Jesus known among us, around us, beyond us?