July 11, 2020
Dear Good Friends,
"Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in Him." (Jeremiah 17:7)
Tomorrow, July 12, 2020 we will meet for our second Sunday morning service since the easing of some restrictions. We are so grateful to the Lord for the privilege of gathering to give Him worship together!
I have been in contact with the local health unit and all protocols remain in place until further notice. Each week on Thursday or Friday I will get a report of how all of this is progressing. For now we remind you that we can accommodate 30% of our seating capacity and masks are required - I am included in that. If you do not have a mask, one will be provided for you. Worship songs are pre-recorded and will appear on the screen. We are thankful for those who assist us with this vital part of our meeting together. Thank you!
Our volunteer staff did an amazing job last week and they will be in place again tomorrow. They will check your attendance, guide you to the sanitizing station and see that you are comfortably seated. Some of our congregation will not be in attendance and that is fully understandable considering possible underlying health concerns. Still others are simply not comfortable attending at this time. Please be assured that, weather you are in attendance or not, we pray that God's richest blessings and protection will be yours. I hope you are encouraged these days despite the many social and other challenges. We really do look forward to seeing you again when you are ready to come along.
ONLINE CHURCH - We are still not quite ready for live-streaming our Sunday services yet. It seems that some of the equipment is back ordered and we continue to wait. We are making progress with high speed internet service and expect before the end of July that will be in place. This Sunday, July 12 the service will be recorded and available on YouTube sometime in the afternoon (it's hard to give an exact time so please keep checking :)). Andrew does a little editing before it is ready to air. You can access it by visiting Evangel's website at www.evangelnapanee.com<http://
KIDS' SUNDAY SCHOOL & VBS - Please note that Kids' Sunday School continues to be recorded. Please encourage the children in you families to tune in! They will really enjoy the presentation. In addition, VBS was a great success! Thank you Tanya and Team for a ministry well done! All of you are awesome!! :)
PRAYER NEEDS - There are many needs for which to pray: Rose-Marie (surgery soon), Tim, Lori , Laura, Olivia, our youth, our seniors who are shut-in, Hailey (3-year old re heart surgery), Pat, Bonnie (awaiting admission to a care home), Angela, Shawn (seeking employment), Ken's niece, Robbie (taking treatments), Allan (taking treatments), Elizabeth, Linda (physical and spiritual needs), Matthew, David, Rebecca, a husband needing the Lord and a physical healing, Paige (15 years of age), businesses and business people, new pastor, unspoken needs, online church, Kids Sunday School. There may be others that we should add to this list. Please let us know if that is the case and we will gladly include them. Be sure to send an email or telephone us should you have a need. You may reach us at [email protected]<mail
PASTORAL SEARCH - A CHAT Retreat will be held on Friday and Saturday, July 17 - 18. Rev. Frank Patrick will facilitate this time together and will speak for us next Sunday morning. We look forward the Pulpit Search Committee meeting again in the near future. We really do appreciate your prayers as the journey moves forward.
ZOOM PRAYER MEETING - Please note that our ZOOM prayer meetings on Monday evening are "paused" for the next few weeks. Quite a number of our congregation are travelling or, at least out of town, and are not available. We look forward to starting again at a later date.
BIBLE READING - I hope you are continuing to read the Scriptures, specifically the Minor Prophets: Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah and Micah. The challenge is to read at least 1 chapter per day. I encourage you to linger on various portions of Scripture that seems to speak to you. Consider how it may apply to your personal life. This spiritual discipline of daily Bible reading will certainly strengthen you in your walk with God.
SUMMER MUSIC - Deseronto Pentecostal Church (Pastor Dan Rooney) will be hosting summer gospel singing concerts in our parking lot. On Sunday, July 12, 2020 @ 6:30 p.m. the second concert will be held with the group "Our Journey Calls." You are invited to come along each time and enjoy.
ADMINISTRATION - Following the service tomorrow morning we will convene our Annual General Meeting (AGM). It is anticipated that we can do the necessary business in 15 minutes!!! That means our "Worship and the Word" time will be adjusted to 45 minutes! As you know the original date for this meeting was scheduled for March 22, 2020. It will be good to expedite this even though it is much later in the year from what is our normal practice.
Tithes and offerings are tracking very well as we compare the weekly income pre-COVID- 19 with the income during the shutdown. The last time I reported to you the percentage was down by a little over 7%. Now it is -2% which is phenomenal considering this world crisis. Your faithfulness is the reason for this good report. Thank you!
The financial numbers compared to our budget is not quite as good. The general giving is down by 15.5% compared with the budgeted figures for the first half of 2020. Missions giving is down by a huge 27%!!! In the meantime, we are continuing to support Missions around the world and we have not cut any funding for our Missionaries...it simply means that we cover any shortfall from our general funds. Overall giving compared to the 2020 budget is down by 18%.
On the other hand, expenses are down as well...and that is a good thing! Overall expenses are down by 30%. The bulk of that is in the salaries & benefits category - down by 39%. Of course we were a little aggressive in setting the 2020 budget and included the possibility of 2 full-time pastors plus current part-time staff.
As we remind you each week the office hours are Monday to Thursday 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
PRAYER FOR OUR NATION AND BEYOND - Following is a message from our General Superintendent, Dr. David Wells.
"We take the time to express our thanksgiving to the Lord for all He has done and continues to do for us as a nation. We acknowledge that God has generously provided for us and given us freedom to worship and to embrace our faith in Jesus, in whom we can take comfort during these challenging times. These day we find ourselves in a unique season with a multitude of needs that call for focused prayer. With that in mind, please join me in praying for Canada in the following areas:
* For the Lord's intervention in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic
* As of June 29, Canada's case count stood at 103,918. We mourn for at least 8,566 people who have died, including some of our very own credential holders, and pray for God's continued comfort and peace for their loved ones.
* We pray for healing for those who are still in the process of recovery, and ask that God will spare their lives.
* While we are thankful for God's help for Canada in "flattening the curve," we want to continue to pray for His intervention in limiting the spread of the coronavirus.
* We ask God for the grace to not grow weary in honouring restrictions that have been put in place by our governing authorities. We also pray for wisdom for those authorities as they lead.
* We ask Him for strength and encouragement for individuals and families all across our nation grappling with the effects of isolation and disrupted work and schooling schedules.
* We pray for continued strength, wisdom, perseverance and provision for our health care and front line workers, and that our health care systems will function smoothly.
* For our churches
* As our churches resume in-person services with restrictions, we pray for wisdom for our pastors, leaders and congregation members.
* We pray for protection for those preparing and caring for the meeting facilities and for those in attendance.
* We pray for strength and encouragement for our pastors as they lead in a challenging season.
* We pray for lives to be transformed by God's Spirit as worship and the ministry of the Word takes place both onsite and online through the ministries of our churches.
* We pray for ongoing wisdom for our pastors and leaders as they continue searching for ways to serve their communities in the midst of the pandemic.
* For our ongoing work in pursuing racial reconciliation
* We pray that our leaders and churches will embrace and implement biblical principles of racial reconciliation, justice, and equity within our spheres of influence.
* We pray that we will work together toward the eradication of poverty.
* We pray for ongoing wisdom as we pursue short- medium- and long-term conversations and plans for implementation towards these goals.
* We pray for healing and unity in line with Jesus' prayer for us (John 17:20-23).
In closing, I invite you to view this short message and join in singing our national anthem: https://youtu.be/16x4-bwWRnw<h
Wherever you are, we ask for God's blessing on you and your household. May God continue to keep our land glorious and free."
David Wells, General Superintendent of The Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada
Be blessed good Friends! We look forward to seeing some of you tomorrow and others as time goes by. Continue to pray and stay close to God in these trying times - very trying times, aren't they! We are praying for you!
Cal Anthony (Rev.)