Mission Moment

Thank you for your gifts!

Thank you for your generous gifts to Presbyterians Sharing! Together with Presbyterians across Canada, you are encouraging and equipping congregational renewal and development; supporting inner city, native and refugee ministries; sending mission personnel to work with our international partners; developing innovative ministries for children and youth; equipping ministers and lay leaders to do effective ministry; bringing people together to share experiences and learn new skills through events like Stewards by Design and Canada Youth; supporting healing and reconciliation ministries… and so much more!  As we participate together in the life-giving mission of God, we are making a difference, in Canada and around the world.

Presbyterians Sharing is making a difference!

Refugee Update

Do you have items you would like to donate to help our Syrian refugee families get settled in Portage?  (Small items can be brought to the church during office hours.  Please mark them “Refugees”, so they get sent to the right place!).  Large items can be dropped off at the Portage Mall on Wednesdays and Fridays, from 3:30 to 5:30.  Some particular furniture items we still need include: small dressers and bookcases, small tables for beside beds or the end of couches, small media centre, one more couch, one more TV, small living room/occasional chairs, lamps, mirrors.  We also need more clothing: winter coats and boots, running shoes, sweaters, pants, long-sleeved shirts, and so on (the children are aged 4-15 — five boys and one girl [in two families]).  Other items you might consider include miscellaneous tools (scissors, tape, laundry baskets, garbage cans, hangers, etc.), school supplies (backpacks, pens, markers, pencils, paper, binders, etc.), and pantry supplies (spices, canned goods, etc. – ask us if you want more details on what is most useful in a Syrian pantry).  Thank you for helping us make these families welcome and comfortable.

Mission Moment

Stay related to us; keep us in your prayers

Gifts to Presbyterians Sharing support and strengthen connections with international mission partners. The PCC has had a close relationship with the Near East School of Theology in Beirut, Lebanon thirty years. This has included the presence of personnel teaching at the seminary, visits to the school to learn about issues in Middle Eastern theological education and financial support for special initiatives.  At the 2015 General Assembly, Dr. George Sabra, President of NEST, asked that we continue to partner with Christians in the Middle East. “Stay related to us,” he said.  “Stay aware of what is happening to us; encourage us and support us morally, spiritually and materially. And above all, keep us in your prayers to God almighty, the Lord of our lives and of all history, in whose love and mercy our ancestors, our parents and grandparents, have always trusted.”

Presbyterians Sharing strengthens partnerships

Mission Moment

The Key is Good Soil

Subsistence farmers in Africa, Asia and Latin America make up more than 70 per cent of the world’s hungry. While Canada has a good track record for supporting agriculture in its aid programs, the aid budget for agricultural development has been on the decline. Good Soil is an ongoing campaign of Canadian Foodgrains Bank that aims to strengthen government funding for small-scale agriculture.  Increased funding will not only help farmers improve their yields and adapt to changes in climate, it will stimulate economic growth, improve opportunities for women, enhance vital nutrition for children and promote environmental sustainably. Learn more about the issue at www.foodgrainsbank.ca/good-soil.

PWS&D is working toward a world without hunger

THE CHRISTIAN YEAR – EPIPHANY

January 6 is Epiphany, one of the four major festivals of the Christian Year (the others being Christmas, Easter, and Pentecost).  Epiphany commemorates the visit of the Magi to Jesus in Bethlehem, as described in Matthew 2.1-12.  The Magi (or Wise Men) were astrologers from a foreign country, perhaps Babylonia or Persia.  Matthew doesn’t specify how many Magi there were, but Christian tradition maintains that there were three, likely because Matthew mentions three gifts which they presented to Jesus (gold, incense, and myrrh).  Christian legend has assigned names and nationalities to the Magi: Melchior from Persia, Gaspar from India, and Balthasar from Arabia; but these details do not come from the biblical account.

In Eastern Orthodox churches, the focus of Epiphany is completely different — Epiphany commemorates Jesus’ baptism (see Mark 1.9-11 and parallels) and his first miracle, changing water into wine at the wedding banquet in Cana (see John 2.1-11).

The word “epiphany” itself means “manifestation”, and refers to God’s manifestation of Jesus to the Gentiles (since the Magi were non-Jews), as well as God’s manifestation of himself to humanity in Jesus, as shown in the accounts of Jesus’ baptism and his first miracle.

The symbolic color for Epiphany is white, signifying joy and celebration.  Following Epiphany is a season of “ordinary time” called simply the Season after Epiphany.  Its color is green.