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EFC Update Newsletter December 8, 2020

08 December 2020

EFC Submits Brief on Bill C-6 to Ban Conversion Therapy 

Bill C-6, a bill to ban conversion therapy in the Criminal Code, is under review by the House of Commons Justice Committee. 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.

Supreme Court Hears Religious Freedom Case

Tomorrow the Supreme Court of Canada will be hearing a case about whether or not courts can review ecclesiastical decisions about membership and discipline. The case involves the Ethiopian Orthodox Church of Canada, which is challenging a lower court decision that would permit judicial review of a dispute between church members and their bishop on a theological and disciplinary decision. This would be an unwelcome change from an earlier Supreme Court ruling that declared courts would not “become the arbiter of religious dogma.” The EFC is an intervenor in the case.

Urgent: Act Now to Defend People with Disabilities

The EFC’s director of public policy, Julia Beazley, appeared Nov. 25 before the Senate committee reviewing Bill C-7 to express the EFC's opposition to the bill and recommend changes. You also can read the written submission to the Senate Legal Affairs Committee.

Watch the compelling testimony of disability advocates before the Justice Committee in our video (Nov. 24). They oppose Bill C-7, which would allow disability to be one of the criteria for euthanasia. Also read the EFC’s Nov. 16 blog, "Will you rise to the defense of human rights?" Your support is urgently needed. Please take a few minutes to call or email your MP 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.

Recorded webinar: The Church and COVID: How are our pastors and leaders faring?

The stresses of Covid-19 continue to weigh on Christian leaders. Watch or listen to last week’s EFC webinar for a great time of learning on how church and ministry leaders are faring. Our guests include Margaret Clarke of Briercrest Seminary, Tim Day of Waybase.com and Dan Godard of Victory Church, Moose Jaw, Sask.

A Simple Word of Gratitude

Saying "thank you" to a pastor can make a world of difference. Judy Paulsen of Wycliffe College reflects in a new post at the Faith Today website.

The Case for Confession

When Carolyn Arends’ friends’ son Sam was young, he blamed his stuffed animal every time he turned on the fireplace. His parents would always hear, “Lamblamb did it!” But aren’t we, as adults, sometimes a little like Sam? Arends explores the importance of confessing to our own sin.

Faith Today print subscriptions are now free to homes within Canada at FaithToday.ca/SubscribeFree. Our Canadian Christian journalism is also free to read online, supported by advertising revenue and charitable donations. Have you made a donation this year at TheEFC.ca/FTDonate? We suggest $15 for digital-only readers, $25 for print subscribers, or $50 for those able to help someone who can’t afford it. Thank you for enabling this important ministry!

Coming Events at TheEFC.ca/Calendar

→ Reimagining Belonging: Race and Place in Christian Communities (Regent College), online, Dec. 9
 
→ Human Rights Day Webinar: Forgotten Fundamental Freedoms Panel (Christian Legal Fellowship), online, Dec. 10

→ Leading Beyond the Blizzard: Funding and Management (Wycliffe College), online, Dec. 15
→ Christmas Presence from Home with Carolyn Arends and others (Pacific Theatre), online, Dec. 20
 
→ Hope is Born: A Christmas Special (Coastal Church), online, Dec. 20
→ Becoming a Better Dad Workshop—Facebook Group (Impactus/Promise Keepers), online, Jan. 6

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

In Case You Missed It  

→ Journey Canada shares concern with conversion therapy ban (podcast) 
→ How is the church doing during COVID? (podcast) 
→ Cultural understandings of trauma (Reconciling blog)  
In those days? Pandemic parallels with the Nativity (Faith Today column by EFC Vice-President David Guretzki) 
→ 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]