Starting March 11 eLearning Classes Enrollment-Online
April 10, 17, 24 Nurturing Justice Retreat-Online
April 11, 18, 25 Sunday Evening Adult Lessons-Online
April 11, 22, 25 Climate Change Colloquy Series-Online
April 19 Creating Connection Book Club-Online
May 1 Satsang: Singing into Silence-Online
May 2-7 EWR Online Discovery Week-Online
May 15 Virtual Fundraiser for Samish Island-Online
June 5 Friends and Family Campfire-Online
View full Canada West Events Calendar
Dates are subject to change. Please register early to avoid cancellation of your event on Reggie.
BC Community of Christ Online Gathering
Hosted by the Vancouver Congregation
9:30am Pacific Time - Visiting and gathering
10am Pacific Time - Service
Contact Chris Phelps at firstname.lastname@example.org for Zoom links.
Hosted by Beyond the Walls Community and Toronto Congregation
Sundays at 12pm (EDT), 11am (CDT), 10am (MDT), 9am (PDT). For more information please visit their website, Facebook page and YouTube channel to watch the service.
Creating Connection Book Club
Third Monday of every month at 7PM (BC), 8PM (AB-SK), 9PM (MB). To join please visit the Creating Connection Meetup group. For details about the next session click here.
Virtual Visiting Fellowship
Tuesday mornings at 11am CDT (Manitoba), 10am MDT (Alberta and Saskatchewan), 9am PDT (BC). Please send an email to email@example.com to participate. For more details click here.
Creating Connection presents: An Afternoon of Nurturing Spirit
Wednesdays from 3pm to 4:30pm Pacific Time. To join please visit the Creating Connection Meetup group.
Creating Connection presents: Coffee and Conversation
Thursdays from 10:30am to noon Pacific Time. To join please visit the Creating Connection Meetup group.
Virtual Visiting Fellowship
Thursday evenings at 9pm CDT (Manitoba), 8pm MDT (Alberta and Saskatchewan), 7pm PDT (BC). Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to participate. For more details click here.
For a list of Online Ministries please click here.
Community of Christ Enduring Principles Spotlight
Unity in Diversity
One year ago today I wrote to you the sixth weekly “COVID Statement.” At the time we did not know how much longer we would need to be concerned about the pandemic. The first “statement” was dated March 4 and the last “statement” was dated April 22. As of April 29 these columns became “A Moment with the Mission Centre President” and we have tried to deal with many topics since then.
Most of the message from April 8, 2020, seems strangely relevant today. Here is the heart of that message again:
The common first question after “Hello” has become much more heartfelt and honestly intended than had been traditional before our COVID-19 social distancing: “How are you doing?” We are truly interested in the answer to that question. We want assurance that our friends and family are, in fact, staying safe and being well. They wish to know the same of us. Yet we also want to be able to express our support if the answer to the question is the expression of some kind of health issue or personal concern that has arisen in the lives of those we love.
There are families and individuals in Canada West Mission Centre, and elsewhere in the church, who have been directly touched by COVID-19 in the form of illness or job loss. I know of people who continue to struggle with various medical, physical, and personal issues not at all related to the pandemic. And in the unstoppable cycle of life, there are families among us who mourn the loss of loved ones. All of these persons and families are worthy of our prayers of love and support.
So: What have you done to keep your outlook positive in recent weeks? What good news do you seek out to assure yourself that humanity is good and that we will all get through this together? What miracle or beauty in the natural world around you gives you hope and assurance and perhaps even inspiration? What books have you read? What friends have you reached out to by phone or electronically? And, yes, what social media connections have been beneficial for you? What images, stories, or anecdotes have kept you smiling, if not outright laughing? Please email some answers to me (email@example.com), and I may share them in the future.
That last sentence remains an open invitation.
Many provinces are moving, or have moved, back into tighter lock-down situations due to recent increases in COVID-19 cases, and especially increases in the “Variants of Concern.” In-person church services remain restricted and difficult to hold or justify in most areas. Family gatherings remain small, outdoors, and still physically distanced for most of us. We are facing another summer of cancelled church-sponsored in-person camps and reunions.
And yet – and yet – we optimistically look forward to the easing of the pandemic over the next few months. We hope we can return to something resembling “normal” by late summer or early fall.
May you feel God’s presence and blessings as we continue on this journey, now extended to well beyond a year in length.
As always, I pray for you God’s blessings of joy, hope, love, and peace in these challenging times.
Canada West Mission Centre President
Twenty years ago the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints changed its name to Community of Christ.
To mark this anniversary, two podcasts from Project Zion offer a look at the past, the name-change decision, and what has grown out of that change.
Visit the Project Zion Podcast website to learn more.
I am sure that for many of you, particularly those who might be of a certain more generous age (such as me), sometimes five years goes by really fast! Well, that is what has happened for Parker Johnson and the Canada West Mission Centre.
Five years ago in February, Parker came to the mission centre on a five-year contract. He was primarily assigned to work with the Calgary congregation and a bit with the mission centre at-large. The mission centre portion eventually was amended to allow him to take on communications responsibilities for Community of Christ across Canada. It has been a positive and exciting time for everyone involved. Parker brings enthusiasm, personal and professional skills, and a commitment to the church and to his faith that has enabled him to have real impact in his various responsibilities.
If you are following the numbers you may have figured out that that five-year contract is coming to an end. At the end of March, Parker will leave his position with the Canada West Mission Centre having most honorably completed the terms of that contract. Parker is not physically going anywhere. He and Preston are still excited to be building their home in Calgary. Parker will still be around and, we trust, involved with the Calgary congregation as are other members and volunteers. You may still see him at church events. He is continuing in his volunteer role as president of Harmony, so you will almost certainly still hear from him in that capacity.
Please join me in thanking Parker for his contributions to the church in Calgary, in Canada West, and, indeed, in the Canadian church, over the past five years. Also join me in wishing him nothing but the best in the future.
Thank you, Parker! Best wishes! And God bless you!
Canada West Mission Centre President
Have you checked out Canada West Mission Centre’s “Virtual Visiting Fellowship”?
This is a “program” that has truly become a “community;” actually, two communities! Participants have become real friends in these online communities that include people from across the mission centre and beyond.
Two sessions are offered each week. At least one of them will surely fit into your schedule:
Our Mission Centre President, Steve Thompson, plans and facilitates these sessions. We share in some introductions and opening comments to set up our time together. Then we engage in a general discussion with reference to topics that have included current events, articles in various periodicals, as well as hymns or scriptures. We conclude with a prayer for peace, for each other, and for others who need our support. Each session lasts about an hour. This has proven to be an upbeat, positive opportunity to help make up for not being able to visit “live and in person” with our congregation on Sundays.
How to participate:
Mark one (or both) of these virtual gatherings on your calendar and plan to attend. We look forward to your participation!
Our "Green Session" of e-learning classes will open for Canadian enrollment starting on March 11 and continues until the class fills up or the start date of the class (whichever comes first).
The following credit classes are:
eLearning Classes cost $7.50 each, MEADS class costs $30 and should be paid before class via eTransfer to: Sam Smalldon firstname.lastname@example.org
To enroll, go to developmetrics.org and click on the "Canadian Registration Form" when registration opens on March 11.
Should you have any questions, please contact David Lloyd.
After careful consideration of global pandemic recovery trends and consultations with field leaders and health professionals, the Community of Christ First Presidency has decided to delay 2022 World Conference until 2023.
Upholding our Enduring Principles in light of the collective information we have at this given time, it was wise to delay the next World Conference until delegates from around the world can safely travel, enter the USA, meet together, and return without contributing to community spread of COVID-19 or its emerging variants.
Read the full statement and Questions and Answers.
Canada West Mission Centre has determined that in-person events will not be planned at least through the end of August of 2021.
To be clear, this decision means that for the second year in a row there will not be a Canada West Mission Centre reunion/family camp at Samish Island, and there will be no reunion/family camp or youth camps or retreats at Hills of Peace. Official notice of this decision has been provided to both the Samish Island Campground Association Board and the Hills of Peace Campground Board.
In addition, it has been determined that Canada West will not be supporting delegations of youth attending “Graceland Spectacular” (“SPEC”) this summer. As of this date we have not received any announcement about whether SPEC 2021 will happen or not.
A number of factors were considered by the Mission Centre staff to arrive at this difficult decision:
The decision to cancel the programs through to the end of August leaves a “faint hope” opportunity that we might still be able to hold an in-person Mission Conference on Labour Day weekend. Discussions are underway about the Hills of Peace Men’s Retreat in September that are leaning towards a “virtual” event. Watch for further information about these events over the next few months.
Plans for alternative ways to facilitate our retreats, camps, and reunions are still under discussion and we cannot make definite announcements at this time. Please watch for program announcements over the next few months in our news and updates and events calendar sections on our webpage and in the events calendar in the “Reggie” registration system.
Thank you for your attention. Let me know if you have any questions or concerns.
Canada West Mission Centre President
“Humanitarian Impact I: Drought, Flood, and Sea”
When: Sunday, April 11 at 2pm PT, 3pm MT, 4pm CT, 5pm ET
Where: Online Ministry through Zoom
Climate disruption has not only created hurricanes, tsunamis and floods that hit the headlines around the world, but continue to impact human populations in a variety of ways. Long droughts have prompted migrations of villages and tribes, while rising sea levels necessitate the permanent evacuation of communities from low elevation islands to higher ground.
Join this webinar where Dr. Richard Waugh of Wisconsin University explores the human impact of climate change and climate disruption from low-level islands to the Andes; from Bangladesh to Louisiana. In his research and travels, Dr. Waugh has witnessed climate-caused difficulties in various cultures around the world. Prior to retiring as Professor Emeritus in 2020, Dr. Waugh taught classes on climate change, social geography and human impact, and led an annual extended field trip to key geographic locations with his students. He brings personal experience as well as professional insight to the conversation.
Dr. Waugh is also a long-time elder in Community of Christ, and did his doctoral thesis on geography and sacred space. He has served as a pastor and as a counselor to leadership in the former district and mission center. His articles have been published in The Herald and in the JWHS Journal.
Join further discussions about Dr. Waugh’s topic on the following dates:
Invite your friends to join as well. All sessions are free and participation in previous webinars and conversations is not necessary to join in this opportunity.
Please note that you only need to register once for the entire series. To register please click on the button above.
For more information about the series please visit the Climate Change Colloquy website.
Adult Weekly Lessons ongoing Sunday evenings!
These classes are intended to create an environment similar to a Sunday morning adult Sunday school class. We have a diverse participation across Canada West Mission Centre. It is interesting because the materials have been prepared by the church. It is enjoyable because those teaching/facilitating have prepared each session to appeal to participants as much as possible. All are encouraged to participate, there is no fee.
Join these weekly lessons during the following times:
May and June dates to be announced.
Pre-registration required for Zoom links. No registration fee.
For more information please contact Lisa Neudorf email@example.com
Come join us for a monthly “get together” for casual discussion of books from a wide range of genres. Open to all book lovers (some books may not be suitable for younger readers).
When: Third Monday of every month at 7 PM (BC), 8PM (AB), 9PM (MB/SK). Our meetup on March moved to April 19.
Our book for this session is:
Fall on Your Knees by Ann-Marie MacDonald
At the start of the 20th century, James Piper sets fire to his dead mother’s piano and heads out across Cape Breton Island to find a new place to live, eventually eloping with 13-year-old Materia Mahmoud, the daughter of wealthy, traditional Lebanese parents. And so, from early on, Ann-Marie MacDonald establishes some major themes: racial tension, isolation, passion and forbidden love, which will gradually lead to incest, death in childbirth, and even murder.
At the centre of this epic story is the nature of family love, beginning with the Piper sisters who depend on one another for survival. Their development as characters - beautiful Kathleen, the promising diva; saintly Mercedes; Frances, the mischievous bad girl, who tries to bear the family’s burden; and disabled Lily, everyone’s favourite - forms the heart of the novel. And then there is James, their flawed father.
“Moving from Cape Breton Island to the battlefields of World War I, to Harlem in New York’s Jazz Age and the Depression, the tense and enthralling plot of Fall on Your Knees contains love, pain, death, joy, and triumph. The structure of the narrative is multi-faceted, richly layered, and shifts back and forth through time as it approaches the story from different angles, "giving it a mythic quality that allows dark, half buried secrets to be gracefully and chillingly revealed" (The New York Times Book Review). As the details of the labyrinthine plot are pulled together, the question of whether it is possible to escape one’s family history gradually raises itself.
Meet our host:
Kelly Duff has loved reading from an early age. In recent years, she has especially loved the opportunities she's had to read stories by brand new authors through her volunteer work with Filidh Publishing; where she assists with preliminary edits of new manuscripts, as well as helps with planning/running book launches and open mic events. She enjoys reading books from many genres, and she looks forward to exploring the worlds of fiction and non-fiction with other avid readers!
When: Our next session is on Saturday, May 1 at 5:30 p.m. BC / 6:30 p.m. AB-SK / 7:30 p.m. MB.
Click on the button above to RSVP and receive the Zoom link or contact firstname.lastname@example.org
This month's musical guest is: Tracy Gawley
Tracy Gawley (aka Sat Sangeet) is a Kundalini Yoga & Meditation Instructor with 20 years of teaching experience. She is also a musician, singer song writer, massage therapist and chant artist.
Tracy has a special and unique sound to share, and she channels that expression into her heart and harmony filled musical chant events (in non-COVID-19 times, joined by her musical partner Lisa Weleschuk). Under the guidance of the same spiritual teacher, (Mark Terrell), since the late 90’s, she has honed and refined her experience and skills in Kundalini Yoga, meditation, among many other spiritual practices, therapeutic training in psychology, and in her individual healing practice. She now draws from this experience, to invoke a sacred and healing space through her mantra music, that can be beneficial to all. Participants may come with stress, but they’ll leave with soul!
“Everybody with a voice can sing, and everyone with a breath in their body can experience their divinity.” Deva Premal
Satsang is a sanskrit word that describes a way of coming together in community to experience the pure truth and love that is beyond religion or culture. During these lonely and isolating times, it is so important to find creative ways of coming together to do this. We welcome all voices, all cultures and all traditions.
**Early bird registration fee available until March 31.**
Join us on an illuminating journey to discover the ways history, culture and belief systems influence how we relate to one another today.
For more than 20 years Encounter World Religions has brought the world religions to life for those who want to discover their stories. Our special online version introduces you to 5 of the world’s religions: Hinduism, Judaism, Buddhism, Islam, and First Nations through meaningful conversations and an opportunity to hear from a faith guide who will discuss the practices, rituals and beliefs that shape their faith, and answer your questions.
Additional optional sessions offer opportunities to discuss what you are learning with other attendees and with our presenter Dr. Brian Carwana.
Whether you attend for personal interest or professional development, a new understanding of the world’s religions will help you better understand your new neighbour, your children’s friends, your colleagues at work, even the evening news. Most importantly it will help you understand yourself, and the factors that shape your own beliefs. Visit the Encounter World Religions Centre website for more information.
The program is taught from a non-sectarian perspective and is open to all. We would love to have you join us. Click on the button above to register.
Have a question? Email Brian Carwana at email@example.com
Save the date and be part of this great Virtual Fundraiser for the Samish Island Campground and Retreat Centre. Please RSVP to let us know if you're planning to join this great event on Saturday May 15, 2021 at 7:30 pm.
Watch for more details as they become available!
RSVP here: https://forms.gle/GqzXgGwzQQXtBhxT6 or click on the button below, put the date on your calendar and we'll send you a reminder as we get closer to the event.
Mark your calendars for June 5 and join us for an Online Campfire Celebration with Friends and Family!
Saturday, June 5th, 6-7pm Pacific Time
Harmony, a non-profit advocating for full participation of Queer/LGBTQIA2S+ individuals in Community of Christ, is compiling a current list of ordained Community of Christ
ministers willing and excited to officiate Queer/LGBTQIA2S+ wedding ceremonies.
Harmony is committed to providing its members with current, reliable contact information in order that they might be connected with affirming, kind, and inclusive individuals in their area wherever they are on their journey. This has historically been managed organically, but as they continue to grow, they are seeking out more formal ways of maintaining such records.
In this case, Harmony hopes this database will be viewed as a valuable resource to its membership around the world as they plan one of the most important events of their lives: their wedding ceremony.
IS THIS YOU?
If so, please add your name to their database by clicking the button below. As always, Harmony pledges to safeguard your details and will only share them with interested individuals pursuing marriage.
You can still watch the Easter worship online service through the Community of Christ YouTube channel. Click on the button below to watch the service.
While gathering in person is not possible in many locations, these lessons offer resources for online gatherings, sunday school, study groups, or even for personal or family reflection.
Community of Christ lessons are available for children (ages 6–11), youth (ages 12–18), and adults. Weekly lessons connect the Lectionary text with Community of Christ identity, mission, message, and beliefs.
Lessons through November 2021 are now available for download. Visit the Lessons page for more information.
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