EFC Update Newsletter August 18, 2020

18 August 2020

August 18, 2020

Blog Post on Religious Violence

August 22 is the United Nations’ International Day Commemorating the Victims of Acts of Violence Based on Religion or Belief. It’s a day to remember that people of faith are persecuted for religious beliefs and practices around the world, whether they are Buddhist, Muslim, Christian, Hindu or other. A new EFC blog post encourages us to take some time to pray for minority religious groups who are particularly impacted during the pandemic.

New Podcast: Behind the Curtain with MAID in Canada

In our latest podcast, David Guretzki, our resident theologian and vice-president, dives deep into the troubled waters of medical assisted dying in Canada after confronting it head-on in his wife's shared hospital room. You can read the original May 2020 text version of this article here.

Lebanon Disaster Donations Doubled

Disaster donations doubled until Aug. 24! Individuals who donate to disaster relief in Lebanon will trigger a matching donation from Canada's federal government, provided the donation goes to the Humanitarian Coalition or one of its members. EFC-related members include Canadian Foodgrains Bank, Canadian Lutheran World Relief and World Vision. Other members include CARE Canada, Doctors of the World, Humanity & Inclusion, Oxfam, Plan International and Save the Children.

The EFC’s Rick Hiemstra at Church Vitalization Summit 

The EFC's director of research Rick Hiemstra will be one of the featured speakers in an online event called Church Vitalization Summit, held Sept. 1-3 by The Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada. Registration is free. The event aims to help churches and denominations go from plateaued and declining to thriving in their communities. It features pastors, coaches and denominational leaders who have been a part of denominational and church turn around. 

Qur’an History Upheaval

Most traditional Muslims believe the Qur'an has been preserved error-free throughout the centuries, but new research shows this isn’t the case. Religion Watch columnist James Beverley explains more in Faith Today magazine.

Support the production of more Canadian Christian journalism like this by making a charitable donation or advertising with Faith Today.

Send Us Photos of Your Church Reopening

It’s official — churches across Canada are reopening. We’d love to see how your church is doing this! Send us a photo of your regathering so we can share it on social media.

Coming Events at

Publicize your event for free on our calendar and we will also share it in this email newsletter. 

→ Hymnody Seminars (Anglican Diocese of Quebec), online Aug. 1926 
→ Theology Rooted in the Radical Reformation (Jesus Collective), online course Aug. 19 
→ Youth Ministry Summit (Alpha Canada)online for staff Aug. 19, for volunteers Sept. 12 
→ International Day for Victims of Acts of Violence Based on Religion or Belief, Aug. 22   
 Journey Interrupted Youth Gathering (CLAY)online Aug. 22   
 Essentials of Inductive Bible Study (Precept Ministries), online, Aug. 27, Sept. 8 
→ Church Vitalization Summit (PAOC), online Sept. 1-3 
→ Teach Me to Study the Bible (Precept Ministries)online Sept. 14 
→ Into the Neighbourhood: Hospitality, Presence and Mutuality (Forge), online Sept. 8, 15, 22 
→ Human Sexuality & Chr. Ethics Discussion Series – appl. deadline Sep. 14 for online course starting Sept. 21 
→ Foundations of Servant Leadership course (Tyndale)online 10 Tuesdays starting Sept. 15 
 How to Study Old Testament History (Precept Ministries)online Sept. 16 
 Ending Poverty Together (Feed the Hungry), online Sept. 17 
 Conflict Management and Transformation course (Tyndale), online 10 Thursdays starting Sept. 17 
 Canadian International Faith & Family Film Festival, Sept. 18-19 

Changes to Medical Assistance in Dying Law

The federal government has been granted a five-month extension by the Quebec Superior Court before changes to the euthanasia and assisted suicide law take effect. See the EFC’s recent blog on the impact of Bill C-7 on vulnerable Canadians and how you can help, or visit

In Case You Missed It

→ What does our faith have to do with our Facebook? (audio podcast) 
 The new moralism (Faith Today opinion column)
 EFC speakers in your online gathering  
→ Sample letter in support of Bill S-211 (bill against forced labour) 
→ Now free in Canada! Home print subscriptions at 
→ Get your message out at Contact [email protected] 
→ Visit to search a database of Canadian Christian online courses