When Felix and Claudette landed here with their family last week they became permanent residents of Canada, which means they are no longer refugees! According to the 1951 Refugee Convention a refugee is “someone who is unable or unwilling to return to their country of origin owing to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group, or political opinion.”
This journey to Canada is an opportunity for their family to rebuild what has been lost. To have a place to belong, put down roots and find security again. What a blessing to be able to come alongside of them and welcome them into our community and city.
Thank you everyone for your overwhelming response of love and generosity donating new and used items to set up their home! It is such a blessing to them, and the resettlement team as we welcome them.
Here are some photos of their first few moments after they landed in Saskatoon! How amazing to have all the fresh white snow and a warmer winter weekend for them to arrive in! Continue to pray for them in these first weeks for good health, rest and transition to new things.

We are so excited to welcome a family from Burundi to our city and church. Claudette and Felix are from Burundi and were forced to flee their country, travelling with their 7 children to a Refugee Camp in Uganda, where they have been waiting for sponsorship. The Lord made a way for us to help sponsor them as a church and we have formed a small resettlement team led by Noel, who is Claudette’s brother and attends Attridge with his family. 

The family is scheduled to arrive on Jan 29. Please join us in praying for them as they travel during this pandemic, for their flights, negative Covid-19 testing and God’s presence to give them peace in all the transitions. They will be quarantining for the first 2 weeks as a family. Thank you for your generosity as a church in providing many items for their home as we settle them.  Check our list of items needed which is updated daily. 

He ensures that orphans and widow receive justice. He shows love to the foreigners living among you and gives them food and clothing. So you, too, must show love to foreigners… Deut 10:18-19

Covid Relief Project

This week a team of leaders in Panama gathered to assemble basic food and household supplies for 61 families who are without an income because of the pandemic. Groceries are bought, supplies like toilet paper and soap are gathered and sorted into bags for each family. Some fresh fruit in season, like avocados and plantains have been donated by communities in the jungle where they are grown. After all the supplies have been sorted they are loaded into trucks and cars to be taken to several drop off locations in the city. The families pick up the supplies at these spots or they are delivered to their homes. Lots of planning, work and care goes into this food distribution each month for these families in need.

The church in Panama is able to visit families with not only supplies but encouragement and prayer. Our family in Panama is thankful for the support that has come already to provide some of the funds to sustain them through this challenging time. They send their greetings and praise God for the ways that He is providing for them.
“..your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God” 2 Cor 9:11
Our goal this advent is to continue to raise funds that will support the Wounaan church as they care for these 61 families in Panama City for the next few months. Please consider a gift of $160 that will provide one family with supplies for a month.

Check out this partnership zoom call with Trever Godard and Tomas Vidal as they share about the ministry of MTC. Meet the new staff team, hear powerful testimonies from past students around the world, and learn more about how God is at work through these people and ministries. FGCC has supported Trever and Joan and the ministry of the Matthew Training Center for over 15 years. We are in the process of forming a global partnership with MTC and welcome your prayers. Grab a cup of coffee or tea and enjoy this conversation with our friends in Mexico!

As Mission Pastor at FGCC I have the honour of walking alongside people who are discerning a desire to serve God in global mission.  I love this part of my role and am personally encouraged and challenged by the faith and the risk taking obedience to God’s invitation in their lives. It also reminds me that God is calling each of us to take a risk and walk in faith as we pray and send others to the nations. It’s exciting to pray to the Lord of the Harvest and see Him call out those he wants to send into the places that are ready for harvest.  Matthew 9:38  Let’s be asking Him how He is also inviting us to take up our role in sending!

Heather Ens, attends Attridge and has served on our Mission Mobilization team for the past several years.  She has a passion for our long term workers and has connected with many of them here in Saskatoon and in Thailand and Panama on short term teams we have sent out.  God has invited Heather to explore mission and discipleship through the MB Mission TREK program from May to Feb of this year.  She will be serving alongside long term workers in Germany ,where the church there is learning how they  are to love the many Syrian refugees who have been coming into the country. In the past 2 years alone Germany has received over one million refugees!  This has put much strain on the country, but has also given the church an amazing opportunity to love their neighbours who have been displaced.  Heather Ens Trek (digital)

Heather

Lavern Pratt, from the Broadway Gathering served in Panama as a young woman and mother for over 6 years, almost 30 years ago! Now God has invited her to serve again in Panama and explore how he may be calling her into global mission again in this new season of life.  Lavern will also be in the TREK program- starting with 2 months of discipleship in Winnipeg with other participants starting in May.  Pray for Lavern as she joins our partnership with Zuluaga’s and Foster’s in the jungles of Panama from July to Feb. 

Lavern

To support them go to mbmission.org/donate/stm-participants and choose TREK Central Canada and then Heather or Lavern’s name from drop down list.

Contact Maryanne for more info on other giving options if needed.
Thanks for loving the nations!

 

Russ and Marjorie Speiser, long term workers who work in the south of France will be here April 2 -14th to reconnect with us and meet those of you who are new to Forest Grove.  Russ and Marjorie will be speaking at The Broadway Gathering on Sunday April 9th at 10:30 am.

Cal and Darla Boese, and their 3 kids will be joining Speiser’s this June on an outreach to France.  They attend the Broadway Gathering.  Learn more about their trip here France Support Letter_2017 Final

Russ and Marjorie

 

 

 

On Sunday Feb 26 we have the privilege of hearing newcomer Issa share his story of  life in Syria and the joys and challenges of  settling in Canada . Issa’s family was sponsored by FGCC this past year, and they have had a resettlement team supporting them with the transition to life in Canada from the Attridge congregation.

We look forward to listening and taking the posture of learners as we spend time with Issa and his family this Sunday at 9:30 am  in the Lounge. All are welcome.

Attridge Syrian Resettlement team and family

Attridge Syrian Resettlement team and family

               “The financial gift gave us encouragement that God was with us ”
Trever Godard, LTM in Mexico.

Living in Community at MTC Training Program

Living in Community at MTC Training Program

The challenges are many and often overwhelming for a person or  family to go through all the hoops to get to the mission field, and one of those difficult hurdles can be finances. To have  support from  this new  Mobilization Fund at Forest Grove will be a great help and encouragement to missionary candidates.

Just a few years ago, the Matthew Training Center in Guadalajara, Mexico discerned the need to purchase a property for their various training programs, and launched a fund raising campaign, at which time Forest Grove gave a very generous gift from the Baerg legacy fund , which blessed us tremendously and gave us encouragement that God was with us and that it would be possible to raise the sufficient funds necessary for this vision. At the time I had doubts that we would be able to do this, but their timely donation raised my faith to believe that God was going to bless us richly. Also, receiving a larger donation from a church fund is inspiring because it comes from many people working together.

To have a Mobilization Fund for missionary candidates who are in the beginning stages of discerning their call, or acquiring the necessary training, or making vision trips to the proposed country of service, will be a great bonus to their support fund, and also to their soul that many people are partnering with them through giving to this fund.

I encourage you to faithfully and generously support this fund to help the missionaries, and extend God’s Kingdom throughout the world as we all work together in different ways.

Trever Godard
Director, Matthew Training Center, Guadalajara, Mexico

To give to the Mission Mobilization Fund you can go online or give on any Sunday in Feb, marking your gift for Mission Fund. If you want more info talk to Pastor Maryanne. Thanks for helping to mobilize those who are ready to GO, your role of prayer and financial support are an integral part of making disciples in all nations!

A Sending Church is a local community of Christ-followers who have made a covenant together to be prayerful, deliberate, and proactive in developing, commissioning, and sending their own members both locally and globally, often in partnership with other churches or agencies, and continuing to encourage, support, and advocate for them while making disciples cross-culturally.” ( taken from The Sending Church Defined,Upstream Collective)

Sending prayer for Heidi and Logan

Sending prayer for Heidi and Logan to Japan for one year

Emma was a missionary for 32 years in India. When she returned to Canada she married Rueben Baerg, a widowed teacher and pastor. Together, in these later years of their lives they continued to share a love for the Lord and his word, for discipleship and mission. Their legacy reached from the River in Saskatoon to the ends of the earth in India; and their legacy continues to reach around the world impacting many. Rueben and Emma Baerg left a generous  gift from their estate in 2010 to Forest Grove Community Church which has been used to mobilize missions through short term partnerships and sending, over the past several years, and will be completed in 2017.

Emma Baerg- served 32 years in India

Emma Baerg- served 32 years in India

The Baerg fund was used to mobilize and multiply disciples in mission through a large donation to the Matthew Training Centre Property in Mexico where Trever and Joan Godard serve ( FGCC affirmed missionaries). Trever wrotethis gift blessed us tremendously and gave us encouragement that God was with us and that it would be possible to raise the sufficient funds necessary for this vision. At the time I had doubts that we would be able to do this, but the timely donation raised my faith to believe that God was going to bless us richly.”
The Baerg fund has also helped send out many young adults and families discerning a call to long term missions through programs such as TREK, or ACTION or through MTC in Mexico. As a church this fund has helped us pursue different partnerships with our long term missionaries sending vision and prayer teams to Thailand, France and Asia.

MTC Student Dorms and Courtyard

MTC Student Dorms and Courtyard

The goal of this new Mission Mobilization fund is to continue to support the development and sending of new missionaries from Forest Grove Community Church. Through our unified budget we are thankful for the support we commit to 19 affirmed long term missionaries every year. We want to have vision to send out more workers in the coming years as the harvest is plentiful and the workers are few ( Luke 10:2) The journey of discerning and preparing to be a long term worker has many stages. There are several young men and women in our church discerning God’s call to mission that our missions team is already walking alongside. We want to be a church with a vision to support the development of those who are willing to go out to the least reached in our cities and around the world. We believe in short term mission partnerships and experiences that lead to long term mission.
The fund will also help with one time needs that arise with our long term missionaries, and sending teams to encourage them.

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Sending 3 short term workers to serve with our long term workers in Panama and Central Asia 2015/16

Would you consider a gift to this mobilization fund so we can continue to be a church that is prayerful, deliberate and proactive in developing, and sending our own members locally and globally? Gifts will be received on the Missions Festival weekend and throughout February to begin this fund (marked for Mission Project) Thank you for your generosity and the impact your gift will have in the Nations!

If you have any questions or want to see the guidelines we have in place for using this fund please contact Pastor Maryanne, Brian Heagy, Lloyd Postnikoff, Tori Braun, Jan Stirling, Heather Ens or Carey Schindel. ( The FGCC Mission Mobilization team)

Join us this weekend at our annual Missions Festival as we LEARN what it means to understand the Islam faith and love our newcomer neighbours who live in our city. Seminar on Saturday at Attridge with Dr. T.V. Thomas. (registration required by Friday noon thru office)

Dr. Thomas will also be sharing at both locations on Sunday am during our worship services as well as during LIFEtime at 9:30 am at Attridge.

Come out Sunday night at 6:30 pm to PRAY , worship and hear a testimony from a Muslim man who met Jesus through a vision . North Site location in Silverwood on Goerzen St.

Our prayer throughout the planning of this weekend is that you would LEARN, PRAY and then ENGAGE with those that God has moved into our neighbourhoods from least reached nations around the world. Let’s respond with gospel compassion.  NOW IS THE TIME. 

Watch Ali’s story  of coming from Islam to Christ.