A Letter from the National Director:
I hope this letter finds you well. In September, I attended the Congress of Evangelism hosted by BGEA. It was a great time of fellowship and connecting with others who are also passionate about evangelism and discipleship in Canada. Afterwards, as I was traveling home, I reflected on the teachings that I had heard, the conversations I’d had – stuff that God was stirring within me. There had been a presentation on the stats of “religious affiliation in Canada” with results from the Canadian Census and Angus Reid polls during the Congress. Sometimes, it is better not having your assumptions confirmed; and sometimes it is what is needed to light a fire within us!
As you might guess, over the past several decades, the number of people who identify themselves as Christian is shrinking. More and more, people are identifying as “spiritual” or agnostic.
What does this mean for us? We know that many congregations are shrinking while the population of Canada is increasing – I hear that concern often. More importantly, we have people who do not have a relationship with Christ; who are not connected to the Body of Christ.
“When [Jesus] saw the crowds, He had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the labourers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out labourers into his harvest.” (Matthew 9:36-38)
Jesus’ message to the disciples is just as relevant to us today. The people in our communities are desperately in need of the Hope and Love of Jesus Christ. I confess that I am guilty. When I’m walking around the community and on the streets, I am distracted. My phone keeps me instantly connected with friends, family and our ministry. But I am often blind to the people walking around – my head is buried, trying to stay connected.
My realizations: I need to be more attentive and I need to be regularly praying for God to break my heart for those who surround me.
In the coming months, you will be seeing a number of new initiatives that we are working on to help reach our communities and equip our leaders. Until then, will you join me in praying for God to stir in the hearts of people to offer themselves for evangelistic ministry.
Canada is ready for Good News, together let’s be bearers of the Hope of Jesus Christ.
Wishing you every good blessing,
Shawn C. Branch