Combining Mission Capsules and PWS&D Bulletin Bits, the new Mission Moments resource highlights the mission and ministry that we are doing together in Canada and around the world through Presbyterians Sharing and Presbyterian World Service & Development. Use the brief story and photo from each Mission Moment in your weekly church bulletin to show how Presbyterians in Canada are making a difference! Use the powerpoint during your announcements or coffee hour or use one slide a week for a Mission Moment!
See week-by-week text and photos below.
Mission Moments PDF – June to September 2014
Mission Moments – Text Only – June to September 2014
Mission Moments PowerPoint – June to September 2014
Mission Moments PDF – February to May 2014
Mission Moments – Text Only – February to May 2014
Mission Moments PowerPoint – February to May 2014
View and Download all Photos Feb. – May
* Within Flickr, right click on each image to save the file
May 4 – Helping Syrian refugees resettle in Canada
The crisis in Syria has resulted in one of the largest refugee movements in modern times – over two million Syrians have sought refuge outside their borders. The Canadian government announced in 2013 it would resettle 1,300 Syrian refugees from Jordan and Lebanon with the assistance of official sponsorship agreement holders. The Presbyterian Church in Canada – with the assistance of Presbyterian congregations – is able to help sponsor ten people to resettle in Canada. Meanwhile, Action Réfugiés Montréal (with support from PWS&D, Canadian Ministries and the Anglican Diocese of Montreal) is helping the Syrian community in Quebec to sponsor those in greatest need.
PWS&D responds to refugees
May 11 – Changing lives through Youth in Mission
In 2013 a Youth in Mission team of nine young people travelled to Malawi where they spent three weeks visiting PCC and PWS&D partners and projects in Mulanje and Blantyre. Participant Katie Hubley from New Glasgow, NS, shares, “This trip was easily the most life-changing event I have ever experienced and I thank God every day for the opportunity to serve Him. I am so thankful for what I’ve learned from our brothers and sisters in Malawi – their warm welcome, their love of worship, their contentment, and their willingness to praise God and experience true joy in less than perfect circumstances.” Presbyterians Sharing supports the Youth in Mission program, enabling young people to learn first-hand about The Presbyterian Church in Canada’s mission and ministry around the world.
Presbyterians Sharing changes lives
May 18 – Empowered to prosper
We frequently hear about poverty in the developing world—the billions of people who do not have access to clean water or health care or enough nutritious food to eat. It is difficult to imagine what their lives must be like, or why they are so drastically different from our own lives in Canada. PWS&D’s new youth game “Empowered to Prosper” aims to help young people understand the causes of poverty and how they can make a difference. Representing families living in developing countries, players will experience the everyday realities of poverty, while moving across the game board. Order your copy today by contacting the Book Room (1-800-619-7301).
PWS&D responds to break cycles of poverty
May 25 – Ministry through house churches
What is house church ministry? The Rev. David Webber says it is people who meet in small gatherings week after week to share worship, scripture, prayer, a meal and the sacrament of communion. “But I think it is what comes out of these little gatherings that makes our Lord smile,” he says. “It’s the member that stays for weeks by the bedside of a cowboy dying from cancer, and then weeps with his widow. It’s the hours spent serving children’s programs in the community. It’s standing by a neighbour who has been abused. It’s weeping and praying with someone who wouldn’t be caught dead in a church. It’s all this and so much more.” Gifts to Presbyterians Sharing support this unique house church ministry in the Cariboo region of British Columbia.
Presbyterians Sharing supports unique ministries
View and Download all Photos Jun. – Sept.
* Within Flickr, right click on each image to save the file
June 1 – General Assembly: Good news stories
This Sunday Presbyterians from across Canada are gathering in Waterloo, Ontario for our General Assembly. Every year, Presbyterians Sharing helps bring together commissioners – ministers, diaconal ministers and ruling elders – to participate in the highest decision-making body of The Presbyterian Church in Canada. This year, under the theme Light of the World, in addition to discussing policy, approving budgets and dreaming for the future, commissioners will continue the practice of sharing good news stories from their ministries and discussing practical ways to help re-energize and re-imagine our common ministry. Celebrating our good news stories is one way that we share Christ’s light with one another.
Presbyterians Sharing celebrates good news
June 8 – Helping HIV-positive families lead productive lives
Three years ago Shupe Mdumkuka discovered that she was HIV positive while pregnant with her third child. She worried about whether she would transmit the disease to her baby or if she would eventually become too weak to provide for her already struggling family. In partnership with the Ekwedeni Hospital AIDS Program, Presbyterian World Service & Development was able to help ease Shupe’s fears about the future. To ensure she did not transmit HIV to her baby, her child was given HIV treatment drugs and tested negative six weeks later. Shupe was also provided with start-up capital to open a small business buying and selling tomatoes. She says she is now confident that, despite their HIV status, her family will be able to lead healthy and productive lives.
PWS&D responds to families affected by HIV and AIDS
June 15 – Promoting nutrition in Nicaragua
Denise Van Wissen’s work as a nutritionist serving with SOYNICA in Nicaragua includes creating resource materials, advising mothers on nutrition, writing project proposals and helping to lead study tours. She recently completed a new resource on nutrition and healthy eating. It builds on an agricultural manual which has become an industry standard used by organizations across Central America to teach small-scale farming families about soil conservation, vegetable gardens, pest management and marketing of produce. The nutritional manual provides a down-to-earth source of practical information, teaching farmers how to transform what they are growing into healthy nutrition for their families. Denise’s ministry is supported through gifts to Presbyterians Sharing.
Presbyterians Sharing sends mission staff
June 22 – World Refugee Day (June 20)
The crisis in Syria has resulted in one of the largest refugee movements in modern times. Presbyterian World Service & Development is responding with Canadian Foodgrains Bank to ensure people like Latif Anaoun are able to feed their families. Before the conflict, Latif owned a cosmetics shop, but when the fighting came too close, he fled Syria for Lebanon. The food vouchers he receives allow him to save money on food so he can pay his portion of rent on the tiny apartment he shares with his six-year-old son and 18 other people. Latif hopes that one day his son can enjoy peace – like he did, before the war. “When the bombings stop we will go back,” he says. In addition to providing humanitarian assistance, The Presbyterian Church in Canada is able to help sponsor Syrian refugees to resettle in Canada.
PWS&D responds to refugees
June 29 – The world meets face to face at Canada Youth!
We text but don’t talk, we Skype but don’t communicate well, we measure friendship not by depth but by numbers on Facebook. With support from Presbyterians Sharing, The Presbyterian Church in Canada is excited to host Canada Youth. Participants from across Canada and around the world will explore how to build the faithful relationships God intends us to have, face to face. Young people have been invited from PCC partners in eight countries: Malawi, Ghana, India, Ukraine, Syria, Taiwan, Nicaragua and Guatemala. The international participants will visit local churches, camps and communities throughout Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island before joining hundreds of Presbyterians at Canada Youth from July 7-12. Pray that all will discover what it means to connect with each other, and see God face to face!
Presbyterians Sharing builds relationships
July 6 – A safe haven for Jacob in Malawi
Living with a disability made daily life a struggle for 49-year-old Jacob Ora of Malawi. Since joining the Presbyterian World Service & Development supported Tidzalerana Club, Jacob’s life has changed profoundly. The club, which works to provide people who have physical and developmental disabilities with nutritious meals, practical skills and loving support, provided him with a wheel chair. “I like praying but it was a challenge to go to church. Now I can go comfortably on my own,” recalls Jacob. Determined to build a better life, Jacob hopes to use the tailoring and tinsmith skills he acquired at the club to start a small business. “I thank God for the support I received from Tidzalerana. I feel love when I consider what the club has done for me,” shares a grateful Jacob. “Tidzalerana is a safe haven.”
PWS&D responds to build brighter futures for people with disabilities
July 13 – Sharing gifts in China
The Amity Summer English Program invites volunteers from around the world to provide English training and demonstrate teaching methodology to Chinese English teachers. Volunteers provide a three-week English training course to teachers from primary and middle schools in rural and remote areas. Past participant Anne Saunders shares, “The program is about people coming together for conversations. The experiences of relationship-building and intercultural exchange provide opportunities for “love made manifest” and glimpses of God in our midst today.” This year, Presbyterians Sharing will support a team of four from Knox church in Waterloo as they share their gifts and strengthen the PCC’s partnership with the Amity Foundation.
Presbyterians Sharing strengthens partnerships
July 20 – Families in the Philippines have hope to live again
Nene Guiuan and her family live in Marabut in Samar province, Philippines – an area hard hit by Typhoon Haiyan. While she remembers little of the actual typhoon, Nene does recall leaving her house in disbelief after it had passed. Families lost almost every possession they owned. Homes, food, clothing and livelihoods – nothing was spared. For three days her family ate waterlogged rice, rationed out because they didn’t know how long it would have to last. But fear was replaced with hope once relief packages started to arrive. Presbyterian World Service & Development has supported the ACT Alliance in distributing emergency food and non-food items in the immediate aftermath of the typhoon. “I had hope to live again,” says Nene, along with a message of thankfulness to those who have made this relief possible. “Thank you. Super thank you!”
PWS&D responds to bring relief in the midst of disaster
July 27 – Breathing new life into ministry
Knox, Campbellton and St. Luke’s, Bathurst in New Brunswick are facing the same issues as many churches in rural areas: an aging population, changing demographics, increasing operating costs and decreasing revenue. In 2013, with support from Presbyterians Sharing, the Rev. Glen Sampson was appointed as a full-time minister to help these congregations become vibrant ministries in their communities. A renewed focus on outreach is breathing new life into both churches. Each congregation is working hard to raise its community profile, with members finding ways to witness outside the walls of their buildings and become involved in mission locally, regionally, nationally and globally. Working together in service for others has strengthened their faith as they support one another and their wider community.
Presbyterians Sharing transforms communities
August 3 – Giving families in Malawi what they need to survive
Grace Halawa proudly shows off the vegetables and fruit trees she planted near her home in northern Malawi. Grace is part of a Presbyterian World Service & Development supported program that is working to build sustainable livelihoods for 50,000 men, women and children. Like many others in Malawi, Grace and her husband are looking after five orphans from within their community. Prior to joining the program, Grace and her family were able to eat only one meal a day. Grace received cassava, soy, maize and sweet potato seeds, as well as grafted orange, mango, papaya and guava tree cuttings. She is thrilled to share how the plants, seeds and support have impacted their family: “This has made a very big difference for our future. Now we have different seeds and diversified our diet, meaning that we have more food security.”
PWS&D responds to build sustainable futures, free from hunger
August 10 – A shining light in Hamilton
Almanarah is an Arabic word that means “lighthouse.” With support from Presbyterians Sharing Almanarah Church is sharing Christ’s light with Arabic-speaking people in and around Hamilton, Ontario. This church draws people from many places, including Egypt, Iraq, Sudan and Ethiopia. Members feel a real sense of belonging. A refugee woman started to attend Sunday worship after bringing her four-year-old son to the church’s vacation Bible school. She is happy to be able to read the Bible in her own language. At a recent service, as the children were leaving the chapel for Sunday school with their teacher, a seven-year-old Sudanese boy who attends church with his brother and grandmother excitedly called out, “I love this church!” As the Rev. Amin Mansour says, “What a blessing!”
Presbyterians Sharing shines Christ’s light
August 17 – Working with women in Guatemala
Aurelia Jimenez Zacaria works with Presbyterian World Service & Development and local partner AMMID as an agricultural promoter, helping other women in her community establish family gardens, plant trees and raise animals to improve their livelihoods. With training in soil preparation, composting and vegetable planting, Aurelia harvests vegetables from her own garden on a weekly basis and uses the money she saves to take care of her family’s other needs. She has also learned how to properly care for animals and administer vaccines so they grow healthy and strong. Thrilled with her own results, Aurelia is dedicated to sharing her newfound knowledge with others: “I hope to continue working with women in need so that we can improve our living conditions – especially for our sons and daughters, who are our future.”
PWS&D empowers communities to create lasting change
August 24 – Providing care for animals in Afghanistan
In order to feed his family, Zamir Gul was forced to regularly leave behind his wife, mother and three children to work as a day labourer in another city. “My average earnings were not enough to feed my family,” shares Zamir. “I was continuously stressed.” Through a Presbyterian World Service & Development program working to improve food security in Afghanistan, Zamir received basic veterinary training. He now does veterinary work, treating 80 to 90 animals a month. By ensuring livestock are healthy and properly cared for, he is proudly contributing to food security in his community. Zamir says, “I am happy with my new occupation because I have an adequate income and people benefit from the treatment I am able to provide for their animals.”
PWS&D responds to improve food security
August 31 – God is at work in Edmonton’s inner city
Presbyterians Sharing helps Edmonton Urban Native Ministry support First Nation people in Edmonton’s inner city. Local congregations host a weekly Sunday worship service, followed by a fellowship meal. Weekly Tae Kwon Do classes and an annual vacation Bible school provide healthy activities for children and youth. Four days a week the ministry’s drop-in centre offers hot meals, a food and clothing bank, the use of computers, a phone/fax service and bus tickets. With help, support and prayer, Harold was able to find sobriety and stability in his life and is now one of most helpful volunteers at the centre. With his history of addiction, he can relate to people at the drop-in centre and is a trusted friend. “This is evidence of God’s work,” says the Rev. Sungill Tim Choi, the ministry’s director.
Presbyterians Sharing transforms lives
September 7 – Encouraging big dreams
September 8 is International Literacy Day.
Mary wants to be a police officer, Fabiyano hopes to be a teacher and Mayeso dreams of being an engineer. All three attend Chikuli Community Day Secondary School in Malawi. Many of the 200 students must walk far distances and lack school fees and supplies to continue their education. These students’ dreams become more achievable every day thanks to a Presbyterian World Service & Development program providing support to secondary school students in Malawi. Mary shares why it’s so important for her to keep going to school: “I am driven because I want to start working as soon as I finish school. Then I will be able to support my family, but also other vulnerable people in my community.” Mayeso adds, “I want to change and grow. And I want the same for my community.”
PWS&D responds with education to build sustainable futures for youth
September 14 – Teaching theology in Taiwan
Presbyterians Sharing supports Ted and Betty Siverns as they serve our partner church, the Presbyterian Church in Taiwan. Ted is a Visiting Scholar at Tainan Theological College and Seminary where he teaches New Testament studies at the Doctoral level. Betty is a cheerful presence on campus, helping students with their English. In addition to teaching, Ted directs a Masters of Theology thesis, sits on committees, and occasionally leads morning worship. He also writes for a Taiwanese and English church and society journal. Ted shares, “We are glad to be here as Canadians, members of the PCC and friends of the PCT.” Presbyterians Sharing helps strengthen our partnership with the Presbyterian Church in Taiwan.
Presbyterians Sharing strengthens partnerships
September 21 – Treating leprosy with love and care in Nepal
Karna Bahadur suffered from leprosy for over seven years without diagnosis or treatment – a time he describes as the most painful of his life. Desperate for a cure, Karna visited several traditional healers, but the herbal supplements only brought numbness and worsened the severe pain. “I became depressed and considered my life worthless,” he recalls. But all hope was not lost. At the recommendation of his neighbour, Karna came to the Presbyterian World Service & Development supported Jumla Clinic. Right away he was diagnosed with leprosy and started a multi-drug therapy for a year. Glad to have his life back, Karna says, “I came to the right place. Not only was I diagnosed and cured, but I was also treated with love and care.”
PWS&D responds with healthcare and loving support
September 28 – Presbyterians Sharing the good news
Today is Presbyterians Sharing Sunday, a time to focus on the mission and ministry we do together in Canada and around the world through our national church fund. Together we are proclaiming the good news of the gospel in word and deed. Together we are helping grow innovative ministries with children and youth and equipping leaders—lay and ordained—to do effective and faithful ministry. Together we are supporting new congregations and helping congregations renew and grow new ministries. Together we are speaking out for the voiceless and supporting healing and reconciliation ministries. Together we are discovering and doing God’s mission. And in the process, we are seeing people’s lives transformed. Thank you for your generous gifts to Presbyterians Sharing!
Presbyterians Sharing is making a difference
Two Funds, One Mission
Proclaiming Christ in Word and Deed
Presbyterians Sharing is the national church fund that supports the overall mission and ministry of The Presbyterian Church in Canada. Congregations commit to raising an accepted allocation each year.
Presbyterian World Service & Development is the PCC’s development and relief agency. PWS&D raises funds directly from congregations and individuals and through government grants – over and above gifts to Presbyterians Sharing. International Ministries mission personnel, funded through Presbyterians Sharing, often work with PWS&D partners.