Here is what's happening at Grace!
Sunday October 22nd, 2017
Hebrews Chapter 8
Time: 9:15 a.m & 11:00 a.m
Chat with Pastor Fabian and Grace
Please note that anyone wishing to visit with Fabian and Grace are welcome to stop in at Mark and Sandy Brown’s home this afternoon between 2-4 PM Address 16 Walkerbrae Trail RR 7 Guelph. See attached map.
A NIGHT IN BETHLEHEM 2017
Thanks to our Grace Family we have 90% of our volunteers needed. Therefore, we will be going ahead with A Night in Bethlehem.
We still need a few volunteers to complete our team, so please email email@example.com or talk to Kathy Goetz or Jen Skolseg in the Community Room after church if you can help out. (For all those who have volunteered you will be receiving an email over the next week to confirm your role).
A few of the outstanding needs are:
- Mary, Joseph and baby (age 1 month– 12 months as of Nov. 24) –need 3 more
- Tear Down (Sun. Nov. 26th 8:30 pm)
ON-LINE sign up for ANIB is now available!
In order to make it easy to sign up for ANIB, we have created an on-line sign-up! Click on the link below and follow the simple instructions. One of the ANIB team leaders will email you back to confirm your spot! Thanks so much for your willingness to serve and share the story of Jesus’ birth with our Community!
ANIB BAKERS NEEDED
We will be needing between 2500 to 2700 cookies baked for ANIB. If you could bake cookies over the next several months for our visitors to ANIB, please contact Deb Cavan at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Celebrating 10 Years of Partnership
For 10 years Grace has partnered with Creekside Church in Waterloo in supporting a missional church in Carmen Bajo, Ecuador. Helping in an extremely poor mountainside community by building a school and a church building while also building homes and feeding children is difficult work. However, there are rewards. Grace Church supporters are invited to come and celebrate with Pastor Fabian and his wife Grace as they share some of what is happening in Carmen Bajo. Event begins with a potluck dessert time at 6 PM Saturday October 14th at Creekside.
Also, on Sunday Oct 15th Pastor Fabian and Grace will be at GCC for both services. There will be an opportunity to contribute to a freewill offering to raise funds for a new vehicle for their use in the Carmen Bajo work.
"The Grace Community Coffee House is coming up on Saturday October 28 at 7:00 PM. There will be an open-mic sign up sheet at the event, but it would be good to have a set of confirmed performers for the first half of the program. Please contact Joseph Brunsting at email@example.com to confirm your performance of a song, poem, story, or any other artistic talent!
We are also looking for volunteers to help with setup, take-down, and especially refreshments. If you would be willing to help, please contact Jesse Wilks at firstname.lastname@example.org. There will be coffee, tea, goodies, and lots of opportunity to enjoy yourself, so come on out! This is a family-friendly event, and we encourage you to invite your friends as well!"
Mafusa: Grace Community Church saves two precious lives - written by Anne Marie Zajdlik, founder of BOH
This is a great story. I think it should be told to everyone out there who is feeling more and more hopeless about the state of the world.
Bracelet of Hope supports 6 foster homes in Lesotho and a total of 39 orphans, most of them orphaned by AIDS. Mafusa (name changed for her privacy), was 17 years old when she attended a party with other teenagers. One interaction, one time, and she became pregnant.
Teenage pregnancy is still very stigmatizing in Lesotho. For the health and safety of the other children in the foster home, she was moved to the home of an aunt, her only remaining relative. The aunt has children of her own and is barely able to care for them. While we were in Lesotho two weeks ago, Mafusa gave birth to a tiny, healthy baby boy. She delivered at home.
Tracey and Candice, two of our team members visited with Mafusa last weekend. She was suffering from the complaints that most new mom's experience. She was tender and sore and overwhelmed by the constant demands of this new babe. She sleeps on a mattress on the floor in an old, dingy room. Bracelet of Hope has provided her with all of the necessities. She has diapers, blankets, clothing, formula, pads and so on; but, she is entirely alone. She was not able to complete her high school studies and without this her chances of meaningful employment are next to none. Mafusa is very bright. Given the opportunigy to complete her education, she will have a very good chance of finding a job that will support her and her child.
Life is very fragile in resource poor countries. One difficult circumstance, one unexpected problem can change the fortune of an individual overnight and forever. Death of a caregiver loss of a job, an unexpected illness, an unplanned pregnancy; a person's security is so tenuously held together that one event can send them spiralling into extreme poverty.
Mafusa has lost both her parents. She is unwanted by the one family member she has left. She is hopeless and despondent. She misses the only family she has known; her foster mother and the foster siblings she lived with.
I can't even imagine that kind of aloneness or the fear Mafusa must feel.
Mafusa no longer meets the criterion for support received by Bracelet of Hope. She is not a child in one of our foster homes. But her situation breaks us. Broken people can do one of two things : we can stay broken and give up or we can stand up and do all we can to change the circumstances that broke us.
Candice had a meeting with Bryan Bitton before our trip to Lesotho. He is one of the pastors at Grace Community Church in Guelph. Bryan was looking for other ways to help Bracelet of Hope. The church is already a monthly donor. Bryan and the leaders of Grace Community Church have offered to support Mafusa with monthly income that will provide her with a child caregiver who will care for her son so that she can go back to school. The funding will provide her with formula, diapers and baby's personal items With this kind of support, Mafusa may be able to return her foster home. That is what we are working towards.
A good friend recently reminded me of a quote that I used to use in my speeches years ago.
The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men and women to do nothing.
Sir Edmund Burke
I don't know what kind of emotions her rescue stirs in you but I know personally, that rescuing Mafusa makes all the difference in the world to her and to us. The work we do will not bring about world peace. It will not change the actions of super-powered narcissists who threaten global security with their careless and ridiculous antics. It will not solve world poverty or the ever increasing threat of global warming. Our efforts are just a tiny light in a very dark world.
But here's the beauty about light. It is recognizable in the darkness. It gives direction and hope. One tiny spark of light can burst into even the darkest places on earth. The small light that Bracelet of Hope and Grace Community Church has held out to Mafusa is not just for her, it is for us and for everyone who is watching. It is for every person young and old who has started to believe that there is no hope for a world as messed up as ours. And if every person young and old responds with other acts of courage, compassion and selflessness, well, then our world becomes a beacon of light and nothing is impossible.
What a joy it will be to watch this beautiful young lady as she grabs onto a brighter future. Well done team! If you would like to help support Mafusa or one of our other beloved foster children, please consider becoming a monthly donor. Follow the links on our web-site at braceletofhope.ca. If you'd like to watch me gasping for breath after a 100 km cycle, sponsor me here: http://bit.ly/2fj1pzO
Cheers and thanks