Black Lives Matter
Indigenous Lives Matter
Lives of People of Colour Matter
I have promoted the “Unprecedented” Canada West Mission Centre 2020 Online Conference in my messages for at least the last two weeks. Many of you will have received reminders about the conference as a whole and about specific sessions through your email. Consider this your last reminder from me. Events begin Thursday evening and continue Friday evening, most of the day Saturday, Sunday morning and afternoon, and concludes with a meeting on the following Wednesday evening. All of the details, including registration details, are available here. Note: Registration is required to ensure you receive log-on information for each event, but there is no fee for registration. This is a free event.
Let me just specifically highlight our Sunday morning worship service. Joey Williams will be our guest speaker and participants from across the mission centre will serve in the other roles in the service, including the debut performance of the Canada West Mission Centre Online Choir! We will celebrate communion in this service, so be sure to have your communion emblems (bread and juice) ready in your home or wherever you will be joining the service from. This service will be supported by the “Beyond the Walls” online congregation from Toronto. Access is available through this YouTube Link. The service will begin at 9 a.m. BC time, 10 a.m. AB and SK time, and 11 a.m. MB time.
(Raise hand, change topic.)
In the midst of preparing for our conference, the world around us just continues to do what the world around us always does. Life happens. Death happens. The miracle of new lives come into the world. The trials and tribulations, as well as the blessings of life continue to form the lives of everyone on the planet. People fall ill. Many recover. Some do not. The amazing experience of our human lives continues to come to a close for many people each and every day. Sometimes that final breath is expected and may even be celebrated for someone who suffered in the last days of their life. Sometimes that final breath comes suddenly, unexpectedly, sometimes accidentally, sometimes violently.
Earlier this week Clifford Olson passed away in the town of Porcupine Plain, Saskatchewan, where he had been an active member of the local Community of Christ congregation for many years. He was also well known at camps at Hills of Peace, often because of the inventive things he would bring along for some purpose – sometimes practical, sometimes just for the entertainment and enjoyment factor. I mention Cliff specifically because on February 17 he celebrated his 109th birthday! At the time an article in the local newspaper said he was Saskatchewan’s oldest person and Canada’s second oldest man. Cliff had a good and long life and he will be missed by his family and friends.
I invite you to pause as you read this to remember some significant event in your life or in the life of people close to you. Maybe a birth of a child. Maybe a graduation or a new job. Maybe a marriage. Maybe something as worldly as a new home or a new car. Or maybe the challenge of an illness or injury. Offer a prayer for the person(s) involved. As creations of God we are all miraculous manifestations of the divine spirit in our human forms. In the “busy-ness” of life may we always recognize the miracle that life is and appreciate every moment and blessing that we are given – even if we are given 109 and a half years of such moments!
I pray for you God’s blessings of understanding, hope, and peace in these challenging times.
Canada West Mission Centre President
community of christ
355 Elmira Road North, Unit 129
Guelph, ON N1K 1S5 Canada
Canada West Mission: 877-411-2632
Canada East Mission: 888-411-7537