THE SPICE OF LIFE!
Report on the Campbellville , Ontario centre by JOHN BENNETT, General Director of the Faith Mission (in Canada)
If “variety is the spice of life” then for us there is never a day without plenty of spice! Let us share some of what goes on in the Campbellville Centre.
Youth Leadership Training – Every year, during the March break, we hold an intensive youth leadership course, bringing together key youth from different churches for Bible study and challenge. Many participants in this course are now in leadership in their home church, school or college. Some are in fulltime Christian service, while others are in Bible College.
Summer ministry program – During the last week in June students joined Faith Mission staff for days of prayer and instruction. Then they scattered all over Ontario and into Quebec to teach at camps and conduct Vacation Bible Schools. Thousands of kids and youth were reached and some professed faith in Christ in the seventy or so weeks of summer evangelism.
One lady, who was thrilled that her three grandchildren were second generation Faith Mission participants, wrote:
“My daughter and son ( their parents), along with our other three children, all attended Faith Mission VBS at Wasaga Beach in the ‘60s and ‘70s . We became close friends with the Faith Mission family and they were a great help to us, as we were going through some very deep waters at that time. Our eldest daughter, Caro, had died , aged nine. She had attended the VBS the summer before she died and had given her heart to the Lord. Each of our children grew in the Lord through those years and our middle son, Ken, is now a pastor. I would like to thank the young men who came and ministered God’s Word to the kids at the VBS in our church, Uxbridge Baptist.”
Summer camps – The first year it was for one week; this year we had five weeks and still we had to refuse some junior campers because of lack of space. Some counsellors were thrilled at pointing their first child to Christ. First time campers spread the news that it was the best week of their lives. It was a partcular joy to have some former campers now in leadership.
Sno’ camps – These are always a pack out! We need more weeks than the two we hold in January and February, but time and free weekends on the calendar are in short supply!
Men’s retreat – This annual event at the end of February unites men in fellowship, study of the Word and prayer. Many testify how much these weekends mean to them in a busy lifestyle.
Ladies’ Spiritual Enrichment Retreat – This May event is another ‘pack out’. During this year’s retreat, tears of repentance were shed, and many ladies shared how God had met afresh with them. This comment sum sit up: “Every retreat has been wonderful, but this year was extra special. The Bible messages, as well as the singing and testimonies were all so encouraging. I was really challenged. There was a homey atmosphere, making it like a big family gathering, feasting and fellowshipping around the tables. I just want to thank you and all the workers, who catered to our every need and served us so graciously.”
Family Christmas in the Country – Four years ago we held our first one. It is a Christmas dinner for people living in our neighbourhood. We plan a program
with a clear presentation of the Gospel. God has so blessed these occasions that now we have three throughout the Christmas season.
Church retreats – the centre is used not only by the Faith Mission, but is in constant demand by churches and other mission groups for youth and adult retreats.
Volunteer help – For four days in January and May, and sometimes in the fall, volunteers come to help on some special project. Through the year, three men are never far away - David Scott, Jack Bell and Bruce Davidson. To these, and Brenda Thiessen, who often steps into the challenge of the kitchen, Isabel and I express our sincere gratitude. Without you and a host of others who have helped the ministry practically, financially and prayerfully this Centre could not and would not be impacting the thousands of lives it does each year.
Though this article was first published some years ago, it gives a flavour of the busy programmes which are still run by the Faith Mission in Canada. They always have a full and busy calendar.This article was published by The Faith Mission, Edinburgh, in Life Indeed January/February 2004