"Set Free" Retreat
On October 23-23, 2021 we had a successful Church Renewal “Set Free” Retreat. Parkwood Gardens Church in Guelph hosted this U.B. New Church Development event. It was wonderful to have 60 people attend the retreat, from 7 of our U.B. churches. The weekend went very well, with much positive feedback. Special thanks to Pastor Jim Tice’s leadership, and steps of faith, in planning this event.
It truly was a challenge to hold a retreat in the midst of a global pandemic with it’s many restrictions. We made the decision to take the extra precaution of requiring a rapid Covid test for each participant. This proved to be the right choice for this event. There were no health concerns reported.
I believe the goals set for the Retreat were practically implemented by our speaker, Dave Overholt. The effects of these goals will continue to bring ongoing personal and spiritual health to our Churches.
GOALS FOR THE RETREAT:
1. Encounter God, be set free!
2. Understand our freedom in Christ.
3. Learn to walk in spiritual health & victory.
4. Learn to help others to receive spiritual victory.
Our speaker, Pastor Overholt, conveyed appreciation to our U.B. denomination “for being all in!” from the leadership of Church Renewal.
National Conference 2021
The 2021 National Conference of The United Brethren Church in Canada was held November 6, 2021. For the second year in a row the Conference's business session was held online via Zoom technology. Rev. Dan Desilest brought devotional thoughts. Mike Mackneer and John-Luke Muresan were voted to ordained elder status and Jeff Stearns was granted a National Conference license. Bishop Brian Magnus was elected to an additional three-year term. It was agreed that the next bishop will be elected as "Bishop-elect" in 2023 to overlap with Bishop Magnus for a year before taking on the role of bishop.
Passing of Gary Bateman
Gary Bateman, a committed and tireless servant of God, went to be with the Lord this summer. You can view his funeral service here.
Gary was a founding member of the Parkwood Gardens Church in Guelph, and was a United Brethren leader on local, Canadian Conference and international U.B. levels. He was the chairman of the board of Emmanuel Bible College in Kitchener. He will be sorely missed.
Haiti Mission Trip
Pray for the Haiti Mission Team, which will travel to Haiti next year. The team will be led by Mark Wallace and Mike Mackneer. Pray for the political situation in Haiti. If the travel advisories aren't cancelled the trip may need to be postponed again.
National Conference 2018
The 2018 National Conference of The United Brethren Church in Canada was held November 3, 2018 at the Port of Grace Church in Port Colborne, ON. Major decisions were made by Pastors and Delegates on the Local Church Bylaw and U.B. Local Church Membership Agreement, on collective U.B. Missionary Support, and on elections for the Bishop and his/her Executive Leadership Team. Bishop Brian Magnus was elected to an additional three-year term.
Passing of Shirley Fretz
Shirley Fretz, a devoted and amazing servant of God, has gone to be with the Lord. She passed around 7pm on Wednesday, September 26th.
Shirley was a missionary in Sierra Leone for 18 years in her younger days. She had suffered with Huntington's disease these last few years.
Her funeral was at the Grace U.B. Church in Sherkston, ON on Saturday October 6th.
Pictures and a summary of Shirley's life and ministry can be seen here.
Leadership Day 2018
A special thanks to Essential Services Leader Gary Bateman, Lawyer David Amy, and our Stanley Park Church hosts for a very helpful and informative Leadership Day on September 15th. Pastors, Treasurers and Board Chairs heard information about incorporation, the local church bylaw and our U.B. local church membership agreement and got to ask a great many questions.
Camps 2018 Successful!
Our Summer Church Camps in Paisley, ON were very successful this summer, with many children coming to faith in Christ and many others growing in their walk with Him. Info is here. A huge debt of gratitude is owed to Camp Coordinator Nicole Somers, the Directors and all of the volunteer staff. Keep on praying for all of the campers and the staff.
New Pastoral Appointment - Shiloh U.B. Church, Tiverton, ON
John-Luke Muresan has been appointed as the Senior Pastor of the Shiloh Community Church near Tiverton, ON. John-Luke and his wife Jessica just welcomed their first child in June, and began their ministry at the Shiloh Church on August 11, 2018. John-Luke has a Bachelor's degree and a Master's degree from Tyndale University College in Toronto, ON. John-Luke grew up in Guelph, ON and did his pastoral internship at the Arthur Pentecostal Church.
Passing of Rev. Robert Kentie, Pastor of Garrison Road U.B. Church
Pastor Bob Kentie of the Garrison Road U.B. Church tragically passed away on July 30th. Information and picture are here.
New Pastoral Appointment - Grace U.B. Church, Sherkston, ON
Steven Brown has been appointed as the Senior Pastor of the Grace United Brethren Church. Steve and Debra began their ministry at the church on July 8th. Steve had previously pastored churches near London, ON, Kenora, ON and in Manitoba. Steve grew up at the Elmira Missionary Church and is a graduate of Emmanuel Bible College.
Ignite! - April 14, 2018
The Ignite! Missions Conference was held at the Stanley Park Church in Kitchener, Ontario on Saturday, April 14th. Despite historic bad weather for this time of year, leaders from most of the churches in the United Brethren Church in Canada attended the day of workshops, panels and prayer times. The day started off with a Skype chat with Brian and Rachel Glunt in Thailand! A delicious meal from Chef D was enjoyed by all.
New Church Name
The United Brethren Church in Stevensville, Ontario has changed it's name to "The Village Church"! The congregation has a vision for reaching the people of Stevensville and Greater Fort Erie. Together with their new pastor, Dan Desilest, they plan to make a big impact for Christ in the village.
52nd General Conference
Bishop Brian Magnus led the international United Brethren "General Conference" July 15-17, 2017. A summary, with pictures, is here. This was the 52nd General Conference, going back to 1815. Matthew Robertshaw, head of our Global Outreach Leadership Team, also represented Canada at this quadrennial meeting. The 51st General Conference was held in Kitchener, Ontario in 2013 and the 50th General Conference was held in La Ceiba, Honduras in 2009.
New Pastoral Appointment - Stevensville U.B.
Dan Desilest has been appointed as the Senior Pastor of the Stevensville United Brethren Church. Dan and Jennifer and their family began their ministry at the church on July 1st. Dan had previously been a Youth Pastor at the Garrison Road United Brethren Church in Fort Erie and the Roseville United Brethren Church. He had also been our Director of Student Ministries and Camp Coordinator. Pray for Dan and Jenn and the Stevensvile Church leadership as they enter this exciting new chapter of ministry in the Niagara Region.
2018 Local Church Reviews:
Feb. 10, 10 am – Guelph Vietnamese Community Church, Guelph, ON
Feb. 13, 7 pm – Parkwood Gardens, Guelph, ON
Feb. 24, 10 am – Grace U.B., Sherkston, ON
March 3, 9 am – Port of Grace, Port Colborne, ON
March 3, 11 am – The Village Church, Stevensville, ON
March 3, 1:30 pm – Garrison Road U.B., Fort Erie, ON
March 4, 9 am – Living Hope, Port Elgin, ON
March 4, 11 am – Shiloh, Underwood, ON
March 8, 7:30 pm – Stanley Park, Kitchener, ON
March 19, 7 pm – Mill Crossing, Cambridge, ON
March 24, 9:45 am – Diaspora Church, Guelph, ON
March 27, 7:00 pm – New Hope, Toronto, ON
April 3, 7:30 pm – Roseville U.B., Roseville, ON