Christmas Message from EFC President
“…because of the tender mercy of God, whereby the sunrise shall visit us from on high to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet in the way of peace" (Luke 1:78-79).
These last lines from the prophecy of Zechariah speak about his son John who would prepare the way for Jesus, what their respective births portend and the profound meaning of their work. We know it means light for those experiencing darkness, and those who are in the shadow of death, and the path to knowing peace amidst uncertainty and threat; most relevant for the times in which we live. May you know the light of the good news of the birth of Jesus and know the peace that is ours in the knowledge of the mercy of God. Merry Christmas. - Bruce J. Clemenger, EFC President
Last Chance to Donate for 2020
The busiest time for charitable giving is upon us. At the EFC, we are praying the extra generosity of our supporters during this Christmas season will allow us to boldly move forward in our work to “unite Evangelicals to bless Canada in the name of Jesus.” We have accomplished so much in 2020 and with your help, we can do even more in 2021. To get a tax deductible receipt for 2020, please ensure that the envelope is post-marked no later than December 31, or make your donation online or by phone at 1-866-302-3362 (toll-free) any time before midnight on the 31st. Thank you!
Justice Committee Expands Bill C-6 to Ban Conversion Therapy
The Justice Committee has recommended changes to further expand the scope of Bill C-6, a bill to ban conversion therapy in the Criminal Code. The EFC’s new blog describes the changes. The House of Commons is currently on break and scheduled to return on January 25. The EFC’s written brief to the committee, sent Dec. 5, asks for a clear and careful definition of conversion therapy that protects religious freedom and good faith conversations. This is a key time to contact your MP with concerns. See TheEFC.ca/C-6 for a sample letter and more information.
Urgent: Contact Senators re: Bill C-7 on Euthanasia
The Senate is currently on a break, but will continue debate on a bill expanding euthanasia, Bill C-7, in the New Year. Some Senators are seeking to expand the bill and remove safeguards such as the exclusion of mental illness as the sole underlying medical condition. The EFC sent a letter quoting a variety of experts to all Senators on Dec. 15 urging careful consideration and changes to the bill. The EFC has appeared before the Senate committee and sent a written submission expressing opposition to the bill and asking for amendments.
Your support is urgently needed. Please take a few minutes to call or email the Senators representing your province to ask them to oppose Bill C-7 and euthanasia on the basis of disability. See EFC resources at TheEFC.ca/C-7.
Protecting Kids from Porn: Three Ways to Make a Difference
A few minutes is all it takes to support a new bill to help limit children and youth from accessing commercial porn sites. Senator Miville-Dechêne introduced Bill S-203 this fall. We suggest three ways you can support the bill right now.
New Video: Where Will the Evangelical Church in Canada Be in 30 Years?
EFC President Bruce Clemenger envisions the Canadian Church 30 years from now. “We are known for how we care for the family down the street,” says Clemenger in this 13-minute video. “We are thoughtful, kind, generous and forgiving.” Watching this video is a great prompt for dreaming about the future and taking action. What do you envision, and how can your community work together to help make that vision a reality?
The EFC’s Year in Review
Even amid the changes the pandemic brought to all our lives, this year was another busy one for the EFC. In this video, EFC leaders share highlights from the past year on our research, communications, partnership facilitation, public policy work, court interventions, and more.
New Podcast: Can I Believe? An Invitation to the Hesitant. An Interview with John G. Stackhouse Jr.
Listen to our new podcast with author, Crandall University professor and Faith Today columnist John G. Stackhouse Jr. He joins Faith Today editors Bill Fledderus and Karen Stiller in conversation about his latest book and what he thinks the Canadian Church should be focussing on in the next while (among a lot of other great topics).
The Loneliness Vaccine
“I’m ok… I’m used to this… But I hear all the conversations at them red lights, and in all my years, I’ve never heard people as hurtin’ lonely as now.” The honest words of one homeless man remind us social distancing shouldn’t stop us from reaching out this Christmas, and we should also hold close to our hearts the good news Emmanuel brings. Read the full post at FaithToday.ca by Tim Huff, founder of the Compassion Series at Youth Unlimited.
→ Becoming a Better Dad—Facebook Group (Impactus), online, Jan. 6-17
→ Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, worldwide, Jan. 18-25
→ EFC Prayer: Denomination Affiliates, online, Jan. 13, 11:00am – 12:00pm (ET)
→ Human Sexuality & Christian Ethics (Salvation Army), online, Jan. 18-March 22
→ Racism, Poverty and Hope (Wycliffe College), online, Jan. 19
→ Men’s Ministry Leadership Training 101/102 (Impactus), online, Jan. 19/20
→ Growing in Transparency & Intimacy in Your Marriage (Impactus), online, Jan. 20
→ Ending Poverty Together Workshop (FFTH), online, Jan. 20
→ EFC Prayer: Canadian Church Unity, online, Jan. 25, 11:00am – 12:30pm (ET)
→ Rencontre au sommet, Granby, Que., Jan. 25–27
→ Stress, Anxiety and Depression Group (Impactus), online Jan. 26–Feb. 16
→ Building Authentic Friendships (Impactus), online Jan. 29
→ Managing Your Anger (Impactus), online Jan. 30
→ Serve (formerly Missions Fest Vancouver), online Jan. 30–31
→ Navigating and Implementing Organizational Change (Wycliffe College), online Feb. 9
→ Dealing with Anger, Irritation and Bitterness Group (Impactus), online Feb. 9–Mar. 2
→ Grow Conference (Mission Central), online Feb. 12–13
→ Becoming a Better Husband Group (Impactus), online Feb. 16–Mar. 9
→ EFC Prayer: Academic Institution Affiliates, online, Feb. 17, 11:00am – 12:00pm (ET)
Publicize your event for free on our calendar and we will also share it in this email newsletter.
In Case You Missed It
→ Q&A About QAnon (Faith Today article by James Beverley)
→ A Reconciling Christmas Inspired by Those Days (Faith Today blog by Phil Wagler)
→ Asking Visa and Mastercard to cut ties with Pornhub (EFC article)
→ The EFC to intervene in religious freedom case
→ Welcome the stranger: A Canadian church guide to welcoming refugees (free practical resource)
→ EFC speakers in your online gathering - contact us to explore options
→ Get your message out at FaithToday.ca/Classifieds. Contact [email protected]