Pathway Camp Ministries Update: Garden Hill First Nation

An excerpt from a recent Pathway Camp Ministries Update:

Our week in Garden Hill First Nation has come and gone and we were happy to serve an average of 75 children/day (even with the holiday Monday factored in). It is hard to believe that 2016 was our 10th summer of ministry in Garden Hill.

Pathway
The logistics for the week went really smoothly – thank you for your prayers. We were able to fly and also cross the lake in good weather on both weekends.

The majority of our team was from Whyte Ridge Baptist Church and we are grateful for their energy and passion. So many of the children were happy to see familiar faces again. Even though the weather was a little unsettled, the team was able to mix indoor and outdoor activities and everyone had a great time. The children in this community are also amazing at Chapel time and they love singing! It’s great to see their enthusiasm.

One of the councilors brought thanks from Chief and Council for coming to teach their children and it was hard for everyone to say good-bye.

We praise God for the opportunities of the week.

 

For additional information on Pathway Camp Ministries, visit pathwaycampministries.com

Update from Seră Project (Romania) – Christina Cooper

Sera Project

Dear friends,

Thank you so much for your financial and prayer support for my service trip to Romania with Segue and Reaching Out Romania. This trip was an amazing opportunity to serve and learn from others whose experiences and lives are very different from our own.

Sera Photo 1While we were in Romania, we were working with a shelter for girls who have been rescued from the sex trade. Our task while we were there was to prepare the site for a greenhouse we had bought for them through fundraising efforts throughout the school year, and to help put up the greenhouse. This greenhouse will be used to provide food for the shelter, increasing food sustainability and food security, as well as providing a source of income as any excess can be sold, and an opportunity for the girls to be a part of the process of growing and caring for something. This task was a little more complicated, and more involved, than we had anticipated. The site that we had to work with was on the side of a hill, and the area that had been previously flattened was not big enough for the greenhouse. In addition to this, the greenhouse did not arrive while we were there, and is scheduled to arrive shortly after we came back to Canada. So instead of simply putting up the greenhouse, we had to hire an excavator do dig out and level a significant portion of the hill, while our team worked to build two retaining walls to keep the large amounts of disturbed soil from falling onto the house. It was a lot of hard work, but we had an amazing team, and the girls from the shelter were also very excited to help us in whatever way they could. These girls did not cease to amaze and impress us with their determination, strength, and desire to help. As a result, over the course of the week, we were able to not only build both retaining walls, but also to buy the supplies and show them how to build garden boxes for the plants in the greenhouse, as well as spend some time doing teaching on effective planting in a greenhouse.

Sera Photo 2Although we spent most of our time on the work site, we were blessed to also have some time to spend with the girls at the shelter, either eating together or just simply hanging out. In meeting these girls, who were all between the ages of 14 and 21,  we were struck by the fact that they were just that – girls.  These were not abstract ideas, nor simply victims or projects, but girls – who lived and teased and cried and laughed and loved Justin Bieber, who asked if we would sing Hillsong worship songs with them – girls who have seen and experienced many terrible things, things that defy even imagination, but who are still living and in and through whom God is working. In spending time with these girls, God reminded me of his heart for them and for others who society has abused or forgotten – the truth that these are His beloved children. My heart was broken for these girls again and again, and God showed me even more clearly His heart for restoration -bringing each of these girls back to Himself and showing them that they are loved and worth fighting for, and for bringing healing. He showed me the beauty in each of these girls, and the transformation that has been taking place especially in the lives of the ones who have chosen to trust in Him and put their faith in Him.

During our time in Romania, we had the opportunity to bless this organization and these girls with a greenhouse-to-come, with all the preparations taken care of in advance. But our time spent with these girls has also been a huge blessing and a learning experience for me, one that I will not forget and, I believe, one that will play a part in shaping who God is making me into as a person. Again, thank you so much for your prayers and support – without you this trip would not have been possible.

– Christina Cooper

Sera Photo 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Women Building Relationships

Connection Like No OtherWind and rain accompanied 70 women from our church as they made their way to Wilderness Edge Retreat & Conference Centre in Pinawa, MB for the third annual Women’s Retreat – Oct. 3-5. Fortunately, the warmth of fellowship and worship on Friday night set the tone for the rest of the weekend.

Retreat Speaker

Our speaker was Kimberley Morrison from Thunder Bay. Transformation was the key word of her sessions. She challenged us to examine our view of ourselves and our relationship to God, realizing we needed to allow Him to transform us. Her sessions contained strong, challenging teaching that required a personal response. The weekend concluded with a communion service which allowed for that.

We were grateful for those women who directed us to worship led by Karen Schroeder.

Relationship Building

Other sessions focused on opportunities to get to know the wide range of women attending through activities and meals. From high school students through to grandmothers—one who has 15!—we learned a little more about each other by eating and playing together.

Along with the activity sessions there were sessions in which we learned about the importance of caring for our health especially through adequate sleep. Putting that into practice didn’t necessarily happen on the weekend as there was lots of visiting that took place in the evenings after snack time.

Saturday afternoon the weather cooperated so we could enjoy the setting on the river by walking along it’s banks or canoeing on the river for the hardier among us. Some found the suspension bridge on the TransCanada Trail a beautiful spot to explore.

Inside there were lots of cups of tea and hot chocolate shared as many smaller groups of women renewed friendships or made new ones.

We are grateful to the retreat committee for planning such a wonderful weekend for us and including so many small details that made the weekend memorable.

 

Changes! Changes! Changes!

D. Hamil

Dr. Dan Hamil Interim Executive Director of North American Baptist Conference

Dan Hamil to speak at Whyte Ridge Baptist

Change, whether we like it or not, is a part of life. In most cases, we do not go looking for change, it is a part of the normal development and growth of an individual or organization. This is true of the changes occurring for both individuals and the organization at NAB’s International Office in Roseville, CA. Whyte Ridge Baptist belongs to the NAB Conference of Churches.

R. McClelandNear the end of 2013, Dr. Rob McCleland, Executive Director/CEO of the NAB Conference, resigned from his position to become the new Executive Director of EQUIP Leadership, Inc., headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia. EQUIP Leadership is a non-profit organization specializing in training and mobilizing effective Christian leaders.

To fill the void left by Dr. McCleland’s resignation, the General Council of the Executive Committee of the NAB Conference appointed Dr. Dan Hamil to the position of Interim Executive Director. He will serve in this position during the search for a permanent executive director.

Dr. Hamil most recently served as the Vice President of Ministry Advancement at NAB’s International Office in Roseville, CA. He is an ordained minister and has pastored at NAB churches in Ohio, Illinois, and North Dakota. In addition, he has worked at the NAB International Office previously in various roles, including Chief Operating Officer, Director of International Missions, and Coordinator for Youth Ministries.

Whyte Ridge Baptist is pleased to welcome Dr. Hamil on Sunday, February 9. He will be bringing the message in both services. You can read the most recent update posted by Dr. Dan Hamil on the the NAB Conference website.

Fantastic Year for White Cross

White CrossWhyte Ridge Baptist participates in and supports, along with other North American Baptist (NAB) Churches across Canada and the United States, the ministry of White Cross. Every year Whyte Ridge Baptist schedules White Cross work days were people make bandages and other supplies for this Compassionate Care ministry of the NAB in West Africa.

Very similar to the Red Cross, the impetus behind White Cross began during World War I in response to the tremendous need for medical supplies. Women in a number of churches began what is now an honored tradition: making bandages and sewing supplies for those in need. After the war, the focus shifted from Allied soldiers to the front-line of medical missions that serve the world’s poorest people (see About White Cross Canada for more details).

Today, this ministry chiefly serves hospitals and clinics in Cameroon and Nigeria, and is a critically-important source of bandages, baby items, medical equipment and other critical supplies. From 2011-2012 more than five tons of supplies were shipped from Canada to West Africa. (source: White Cross Canada website)

This week we received an update from Keir Hammer, Director of White Cross Canada. White Cross Canada is located on the campus of Taylor Seminary in Edmonton, AB. Keir writes…

What a fantastic year! Support from churches and White Cross groups—whether financial, sending of supplies or both—has been amazing! The last container of the year was sent in late October, and we should finish up the year strong.

Whyte Cross WarehouseI am so please that the core of White Cross continues so well in groups across the country. All of the bandages, materials, baby supplies, devotional materials, hospital supplies, beds, mattresses etc. are enthusiastically received in the hospitals and clinics in West Africa. Recently Calvin Hohn visited the Central Supply where all supplies initially arrive and from where they are distributed. He arrived just hours after one of our recent shipments had been unloaded. There was much excitement over all of the much-needed supplies.

In my position I hear so many exciting stories of faithfulness and creativity. The faithfulness of those who continue to contribute to the needs of White Cross year after year is very encouraging.  So is the creativity, as new ways are found to include the NEXT generation in the activities of White Cross.

Recently one person, who had been involved in White Cross for years, finally stepped into the always large position of giving oversight to White Cross in their church. It was a scary experience, I am sure, but what a fantastic difference it has made. Allow me to share with you one of those differences: for VBS this year, she offered White Cross as one of the ‘activities’ that the children could do. They had a fantastic time tearing sheets and rolling bandages (a great way to get started with White Cross). Some of the children wanted to do more White Cross instead of playing games. Can you imagine the impact that activity had on each one of those children? Can you imagine what a tiring and exhilarating week that was for her?

Youth groups are starting to recognize that they can participate in White Cross as part of their serve program. It is a fantastic way to make a difference globally by doing something right here at home. As I write I know of at least one youth group in that is going to have their first try at some White Cross activities and plan to make this a regular part of their youth meetings. It is so encouraging when you see the excitement being passed on to the next generation.

Another component of White Cross is the supply of medical and surgical supplies for West Africa. Sometimes we purchase requested supplies. Sometimes supplies are donated. In both cases the finances to purchase and ship these supplies comes from the many people across Canada who regularly contribute to White Cross. We are also heavily dependent upon individuals and groups with connections in the medical industry who find access to materials we could never acquire otherwise.

White Cross  Warehouse MicroscopeHave you heard the story of the microscope? It is a good one. Recently White Cross Canada was asked if they would have any use for a used microscope that is used for eye, ENT and other surgeries. It is a pricy piece of equipment when purchased new. Inquiries were made and it turned out that they were searching for this exact microscope. What an answer to prayer. The machine weighed over 1000 pounds. Where in the world did we get the funds to ship it?  From our growing list of generous groups and individuals who give regularly year after year. One donor stepped up and helped bridge the gap on what was short for this shipment. Is White Cross in your church budget? Does your church offer a special activity to help raise funds for the work of White Cross? Are there opportunities to help participate in the work of White Cross?  Let me encourage each one who reads this update: support your local White Cross group in any way that you can. Are there people in your church who have been faithful in their support of White cross year after year? Make sure you thank them for their support!

Are you involved in other activities that support the Kingdom of God? Excellent, don’t stop. We are all partners together!

Want to know more? Check out the home of White Cross Canada on the web.

Take 3 minutes to watch this video explaining White Cross – the Compassionate Care ministry of the North American Baptist Conference in Cameroon and Nigeria.

2012 India Missions Trip

Since 2010, Whyte Ridge Baptist has participated in several mission trips to West Bengal in Northeast India, working in partnership with Far Corners Ministry. Far Corners is an organization that exists to support the growing Church in northeast India by training pastors and lay leaders, building churches and helping the poor. God is working in His church in India. Many people are coming to know Christ!

2012 Team members taught at several conferences, helping to provide Biblical training to rural pastors and leaders and preached in local churches. They also assisted in the building of several church structures and helped distribute some basic necessities (such as blankets, mosquito netting, and school supplies) to churches, orphanages, and families. The Whyte Ridge church family was involved here at home by fundraising to help provide these things. Children from our church also sent gifts which were distributed to children in the orphanages and churches visited.

Team members where: Karen Dyck, Shelly Cumming, Christine Janzen, Steve Morris, Raj Manuel, Kevin Klassen. Team Training and support: Heather Warkentin, Mike Woolman, Azhar Ladlin.

Praise God for what He is doing in West Bengal! We give thanks for the opportunity to connect with brothers and sisters in India, and pray He will continue to bring many more to Himself. May He also continue to impress the nations upon the hearts of our church family here at WRBC.

2013 Bolivia Missions Trip

Three Cultures, Two Continents, One God

…the Whyte Ridge Baptist/Winnipeg Somang Presbyterian Church Bolivia Mission Trip.

Bolivia TeamFrom August 6th to 22nd six people from Winnipeg Somang Presbyterian Church and four from Whyte Ridge Baptist Church travelled to and through Bolivia, observing and sharing in ministries organized by Canadian Baptist Ministries in partnership with the Bolivian Baptist Union. Bringing together Korean, Bolivian and Western Canadian cultures and languages was an enjoyable challenge, and the team truly was a living example of “Global Discipleship”.

While in Bolivia, the multicultural mission trip included visits to the Obades’ Chagas Remediation Project in Mizque. Homes are plastered to prevent infectious bug bites from the Vinchuca beetles that live in the walls of unplastered mud brick homes. Chagas is a slowly debilitating disease; plastering homes improves the outcomes for families raising children in homes where contracting the disease is far less likely.

The team also visited Casa de la Amistad, a day school program for children who otherwise live in jails, with their incarcerated parents. We were reminded daily of how different Canada and Korea are from Bolivia. Over the years Casa has improved the lives of hundreds of young people, while also introducing them to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. In El Alto on the outskirts of La Paz the team visited two beneficiaries of a microfinance project sponsored by Obades and the Bolivian Baptist Union. Providing small loans to cottage industries such as mattress and furniture manufacturing aids families and improves their living conditions.

The team got involved in practical “hands on” missions by helping to scrape and paint at the Baptist Seminary in Cochabamba. The library computer system also received some much needed attention to restore passwords and reset defaults, and the team also assisted by teaching two evening classes in education methods and exegesis. It was good to fellowship with the people we met in our one-week at the Seminary.

The primary goal of the mission trip was to observe, to learn, and to bring back ideas about how the two churches can best connect to mission work already underway in Bolivia. There are many opportunities for service and for sharing the Gospel. Partnering with Canadian Baptist Ministries was a natural fit, given the history that Pastor Terry and Pat Janke have with CBM. The trip was well organized by CBM, and Ivan Gutierrez, the CBM field staff member who coordinated our events and transportation in-country was a true blessing.

Bolivia is a land of stark contrasts; there is great wealth and crushing poverty, and they co-exist out in the open, for all to see. But beyond the obvious material wealth or poverty of the people is the more pressing question of their spiritual wealth or poverty. Do they know Christ, and do they share in his inheritance, as his heirs? The mission work in Bolivia aims to improve the material and spiritual conditions of the people, proclaiming the Gospel while also “loving thy neighbour” and helping to improve living conditions in this vibrant and developing nation.