Last week we looked at some statistics that gave us a good picture of what the community around our church looks like. I was very interested to learn that 17.85% of the 1015 people living in our neighborhood are classified under “No Religious Affiliation”. That’s approx. 181 people! How much do we know or understand about this group? I’m glad you came today because we will be doing a study to help equip you as a Christian believer with tools to better understand this very important group of people. Among those, we’ll review the different faith stages of the unchurched and how to approach them. Hope you brought a pen… My challenge for each of you is to pray for our community and realize that God loves them and gave His life for them too. Welcome – we’re glad you’re here!
OSHKOSH UPDATE PART 2: Though I’m away again this Sabbath, I wanted to share with you something that happened last week at Oshkosh. Last Wednesday evening, at one of these evening programs, I had the privilege of baptizing one of our Pathfinders, Joseph Acosta. It was amazing to be a part of a baptism on such a large scale as there were another 200 young people getting baptized (and that was just Wednesday night alone with many more hundreds since!) We are so proud of Joseph’s decision, we celebrate with his family, and we look forward to welcoming him officially as a member of our church family when we are all back together. Today, as you’re all at Bronte, celebrate the Sabbath with one another, and may God continue to bless each of you as you worship Him.
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Our theme this quarter is Closer to Community. What we will focus on in particular is how to fulfill Jesus’ invitation to share his love to people in the community. Our community can be the city of Oakville or even our neighbors or co-workers and in order to reach them for Jesus we first need to know them and understand who they are. Today we will look at the theology behind mission and in the upcoming weeks we will also look at some demographics for our church’s neighborhood in particular and discover methods that will help us share the most amazing message in the world. We also have a few outreach events planned – one of them happened last Sunday where the Pathfinder ministry and the Community Services ministry joined together and put on a successful and free community BBQ and car wash. Through the donations they’ve managed to raise over $1500 to help with the Oshkosh trip happening in a couple weeks. It was amazing to see not only our own members having fun but also the folks from the community that came out. Please pray that our church will be known in this community as a church that serves its neighborhood with love. God bless each of you today!
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Our church has a vibrant Family Life Ministry program that has many fun things planned for our church family throughout the year. Last week we had a great time fellowshipping together outside on the grass after service for “Flat Shoe No Tie” Sabbath. This week some of us are spending the day at our church’s camp in the Muskokas. Whether you are here at Bronte or up at Camp Frenda, we hope you have a blessed day as you worship together with us. Our speaker here at Bronte today is one of our Elders, Sister Fay Wellington. She is a vital part of our church leadership and I know that God will use her in a powerful way today as she delivers the message. May God bless you and keep you safe (Isaiah 41:10). Welcome!
I want to take a special moment to welcome you to our flat shoe, no tie special Sabbath today when we celebrate all our graduates. We are so proud of what they’ve accomplished and wish them God’s richest blessings as they continue their journey. A few weeks ago I had a sermon on the topic of fruitfulness where the main point was a call to remain connected to Jesus. We learned that we can do this by reading the Bible and being active in our prayers. When we stay connected to Him we produce good fruit because of Him not because of us. Today’s sermon is the second part in this mini series on being fruitful. We will look at a strange story in the New Testament where Jesus does something unexpected and for some of us it’s down-right strange. Let’s explore a time when Jesus used a fruit tree to teach us a valuable lesson on faith.