The Life and Mission Agency Committee works to fulfill the mandate given to it by the church:

  • striving, under the power of the Holy Spirit to enable the whole church to serve the whole world, and thus be a sign of the reign of God;
  • being faithful to the Mission statement of the church, and to affirm the vision and desire of The Presbyterian Church in Canada to be a church integrating discipleship, evangelism, social action and justice ministry;
  • responding flexibly, creatively and effectively to the needs of congregations and courts of the church as they seek assistance in responding to the call of Jesus Christ in mission;
  • giving priority to doing what must be done at the national level and facilitating tasks that can be done more appropriately at another level of the church, or ecumenically.

The Life and Mission Agency fulfills this mandate in various ways:

  • providing resources to congregations, presbyteries and synods, and envisioning new and innovative models for ministries and congregational life;
  • responding to disasters, the complex needs of refugees, and supporting life-giving long-term development projects;
  • communicating both the good and the tragic stories of our church,
  • working with Indigenous people
  • gathering youth from around the world at Canada Youth into a community and encouraging them to follow the way of Christ in whatever path they are called;
  • studying tough issues of faith and justice, such as human sexuality and climate change;
  • offering guidance for discerning vocations for ordained ministry and welcoming pastors from abroad;
  • connecting with people in distant corners of God’s realm in order to encounter the diversity and the challenges of the followers of Christ’s way.

LMA Committee Members

The denomination is blessed to have highly committed and gifted people appointed by the General Assembly from across Canada who serve the church as members of the Life and Mission Agency Committee. We are grateful to those who serve on the committee with diligence, faithfulness and dedication.

The members of the Life and Mission Agency committee are: the Rev. Sampson Afoakwah (Montreal, Quebec), the Rev. Dr. Charles Cook (Riverview, New Brunswick), Mr. Aubrey Hawton (Oro-Medonte, Ontario), Ms. Vivian Ketchum (Winnipeg, Manitoba), the Rev. Jeffrey Lackie (Medicine Hat, Alberta), Ms. Marion Lade (Comox, British Columbia), the Rev. Cheryl MacFadyen (St. Stephen, New Brunswick), the Rev. Allyson MacLeod (Sutton West, Ontario), Ms. Donna McIlveen (Johnstown, Ontario), Ms. Cindy Stephenson (convener) (Calgary, Alberta), Dr. Jo Szostak (Regina, Saskatchewan), the Rev. Jinsook Khang (Assembly Council representative), Ms. Carol Stymiest (Assembly Council representative).

Assembly Council Appointments: the Rev. Jinsook Khang, Ms. Carol Stymiest

Atlantic Mission Society Representative: Mr. Robert Griffiths (Prince Edward Island)

Women’s Missionary Society Representative: Ms. Cathy Reid (Ontario), Ms. Janet Brewer (Ontario) for the Executive Director of the Women’s Missionary Society

PWS&D Representative: the Rev. Andrea Perrett (British Columbia)

Ex-Officio: Moderator of the General Assembly, Principal Clerk of the General Assembly, Executive Director of the Women’s Missionary Society, Treasurer and Chief Financial Officer, General Secretary of the Life and Mission Agency

Conflict of Interest Guidelines
Covenant of Order
LMA Committee Minutes – February, 2021
LMA Committee Minutes – November, 2020
LMA Committee Minutes – March, 2020

Mandates of the Life and Mission Agency

Believing that congregations are of vital importance and that presbyteries have a pivotal role in the oversight of their constituencies, Canadian Ministries will strive to provide human, on-line, printed, financial and other resources to enhance the mission and ministry of The Presbyterian Church in Canada. Canadian Ministries will engage with and facilitate church leaders, supporting them as they carry out their ministry of furthering the spread of the gospel. Canadian Ministries:

  • provides accessible, thorough and prompt responses to requests for information for all aspects of congregational life;
  • produces on line and print resources for the church in the fields of evangelism, Christian education, youth, congregational development, change and transition, worship and leadership development;
  • draws upon the gifts and talents of the leadership of The Presbyterian Church in Canada and connects them and their ideas to the wider church through leadership opportunities and print resources;
  • assists presbyteries as they evaluate, vision and execute programs as a part of their strategic planning emphasis and supports presbyteries in the development of workshops, consultations and conferences for growth and renewal;
  • supports and provides grants to congregations and to presbyteries as they oversee new church development, renewing ministries, Aboriginal ministries, chaplaincies, rural and remote ministries, and other specialized ministries;
  • aids presbyteries in their search for new and innovative mission and ministry initiatives by providing grants from regular budget sources, from internally restricted funds, and from designated bequests;
  • makes appointments based upon presbytery requests;
  • will be current, creative, responsive, proactive and innovative in aspects of congregational ministry in seeking to carry out this mandate.
The Communications department will be the centre for all communication and evolving concepts of communication for the national office of The Presbyterian Church in Canada. The department will inspire the church in innovative communication techniques, bold methods for presenting the gospel to a 21st century audience and equip congregations to do the same. The department shall be responsible for:

  • creating a vision for an innovative, multi-faceted communication strategy for The Presbyterian Church in Canada;
  • communicating essential messages within The Presbyterian Church in Canada;
  • communicating with Presbyterian churches and courts;
  • communicating with the wider community about the mission and ministry of The Presbyterian Church in Canada and its congregations;
  • equipping congregations, presbyteries and synods to share their mission and ministry with the wider church;
  • presenting bold concepts and images for other departments/offices, committees and agencies in communication and resources;
  • providing an effective internal communication network to the respective bodies and courts of The Presbyterian Church in Canada;
  • providing an effective external communication plan for the broader public (media, seekers and ecumenical bodies);
  • assisting the General Assembly Office in implementing a communication strategy for the benefit of all commissioners and resource people at General Assembly.
The International Ministries department shall enable the church to participate in the worldwide mission of God through Jesus Christ in co-operation with partner churches and agencies throughout the world, by such means as:

  • communicating regularly with the leaders of our partner churches and agencies through correspondence and partner visits;
  • recruiting and sending personnel who will serve as living links of the bonds of friendship between our church and our mission partners around the world;
  • providing funds to enable our partners to carry out aspects of their mission that they would not be able to carry out without outside assistance;
  • enabling leadership development of key personnel, both lay and clergy, identified by our partners;
  • participating in ecumenical organizations and coalitions that support our church’s holistic understanding of the worldwide mission of God through Jesus Christ.
To collaborate with and assist congregations and courts of the church to respond obediently to the justice imperatives of the gospel by:

  • supporting and facilitating initiatives on social justice in The Presbyterian Church in Canada. This could involve: regional staff, congregations, social justice committees in presbyteries, the Atlantic Mission Society and the Women’s Missionary Society and youth groups;
  • encouraging theological reflection and action on social justice issues in The Presbyterian Church in Canada;
  • animating workshops;
  • responding to queries on church policies or social justice issues;
  • co-coordinating research and writing position papers to assist The Presbyterian Church in Canada speak prophetically on social justice issues through engagement with elected officials and decision-makers;
  • assisting Presbyterians and courts of the church in bringing about healing and reconciliation between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people, and in building a new, strong and healthy relationship;
  • collaborating with ecumenical partners including the Canadian Council of Churches, the Church Council on Justice and Corrections, KAIROS and Project Ploughshares and encouraging Presbyterians to become involved in these ecumenical agencies;
  • ensuring representation of The Presbyterian Church in Canada on the Canadian Council of Churches’ Commission on Justice and Peace; Churches Council on Justice and Corrections; KAIROS: Canadian Ecumenical Justice Initiatives.
The Ministry and Church Vocations department shall assist the church to discern, prepare and support professional leaders in ministry, by such means as:

  • stimulating theological reflection about ministry;
  • maintaining effective working relationships with the Committee on Theological Education and the theological colleges;
  • co-ordinating the work of special committees, such as the Committee on Education and Reception, the Continuing Education Grants Committee, and the Women in Ministry Committee;
  • maintaining effective networks with synods and presbyteries, and serving as a resource in the use and interpretation of particular policies;
  • assisting presbyteries, colleges and candidates in their decisions regarding candidacy for ministry;
  • equipping presbyteries for their decisions regarding calls and designations, appointments and benefits;
  • facilitating placement of professional church leaders through a congregational and personnel profile referral system;
  • assisting the church in the ongoing support, nurture and development of professional church leaders;
  • establishing and identifying resources to support the work of crisis intervention and conflict resolution across the church;
  • formulating policies and managing a feedback loop on the church’s use of them, proposing revisions as appropriate;
  • serving actively in appropriate ecumenical coalitions/structures.
The Presbyterian World Service & Development Committee shall be a standing committee of the Life and Mission Agency serving as the international development and relief agency of The Presbyterian Church in Canada. PWS&D is “to act as the agency within The Presbyterian Church in Canada for undertaking development activities, disaster relief and education of congregations to these world-wide needs.” (A&P, 1981, p. 407)

PWS&D shall enable the church to respond generously and compassionately to human need around the world by:

  • identifying and supporting development programs of partner agencies that contribute to long-term improvement in living conditions and transformation of society;
  • building partnerships with churches and agencies with which we share development projects;
  • providing emergency relief for people in disaster situations;
  • working closely with other Life and Mission Agency departments such as International Ministries, Justice Ministries and Education for Mission to co-ordinate the wider mission of the church;
  • working closely with these departments to provide resources that promote awareness and understanding throughout the church of the causes of poverty, conflict and suffering in the world and calling our constituency to obedient, generous involvement and response;
  • administering the Refugee Sponsorship Agreement with the Canadian government and assisting congregations in sponsoring refugees to Canada;
  • working actively with ecumenical and international agencies where possible to maximize our impact.
Purpose

The Stewardship and Planned Giving department will help individuals, congregations, presbyteries and synods discover the ways that they can best use their resources to participate in God’s mission in creation and redemption by:

  • helping congregations to better understand the linkages between money and faith and foster an understanding of generosity as a spiritual discipline and as a way to share in God’s mission;
  • equipping clergy and lay leaders with the skills, materials and opportunities they need to nurture financially healthy churches with strong annual giving programs, year round stewardship and planned giving opportunities, and how to effectively use their facilities for ministry;
  • encouraging individuals, congregations, presbyteries and synods to support mission locally, nationally and internationally as one way of participating in God’s mission;
  • helping the church understand and support the annual budget of The Presbyterian Church in Canada (Presbyterians Sharing);
  • encouraging and enabling individuals to make gifts of their accumulated resources to all levels of the church through a strong planned giving and major gifts program.

Mandate

The Stewardship and Planned Giving department shall be grounded in the theology of stewardship and the ethos and mission of The Presbyterian Church in Canada. The department will encourage generous giving from individuals and congregations to the ministries of The Presbyterian Church in Canada through Presbyterians Sharing, Gifts of Change, accumulated assets and major gifts. It will help individuals, congregations, presbyteries, synods, and specialized ministries find sustainable financial resources to participate in God’s mission today and in the future.

Tasks

The department will:

  • nurture annual, major and planned gifts from congregations and individuals to support the mission and ministry we do together through Presbyterians Sharing, Gifts of Change and special funds;
  • hold educational and equipping events (e.g., Stewards by Design, regional workshops, congregational consultations) to equip congregations to nurture a culture of generosity in support of the ministry of the church—locally, regionally and nationally;
  • develop and support networks of resource people who are equipping congregations in healthy financial stewardship and planned giving and are encouraging gifts to national ministry;
  • research, adapt and prepare electronic and printed educational materials—including best practices, templates for policies, assessment tools, worship material and congregational strategies—to help congregations, specialized ministries and presbyteries develop sound financial stewardship and planned giving strategies based on technology appropriate for the Presbyterian context.