A Call to Prayer

I suppose most of us have heard the words “change” and “transition” enough these days to last us a long time. The small course corrections that we all make daily sometimes (often?) result in significant changes down the road, decisions we make with prayer and an ear to God. And then there are the big ... Read more

Mass in Motion

Tom Cochrane sang “Life is a Highway,” but that musical metaphor of the journey is one that God’s people have been taking to heart for more years than Yonge Street has miles. Ancient Israel’s beginnings were as a travelling people—travelling with God, to God, and sometimes (at least metaphorically speaking) away from God! We sometimes ... Read more

Five Years of Fortune

It is time for me to bid this column, the Renewal Fellowship and my Encouragement Road Trips a wistful goodbye. At 67, I can no longer pretend to function at the energy level or capacity I once did. So, after five years of serving the denomination under the Renewal banner, I sadly must hand it ... Read more

Renewing of Minds

“Do not be conformed to this age but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” Romans 12:2 Sometimes a text of scripture sticks in my mind for days and even weeks. While this can be true of music ... Read more

Some Assembly Required

I sit here in Blind River, Ont., a Timmy’s stop on the drive from Sault Ste. Marie to Pembroke, I find myself reflecting over the past few weeks. As some of you know, I am roadtripping around Ontario these days. As I visit congregations and ministers, I share encouragement from those who care, pray and ... Read more

The Parable of a Lighthouse

In 2004 as a meditation at a ministerial meeting, our local Catholic priest read us this powerful story. I often think of it and it challenges me and should challenge us all. (Many unattributed versions of this story exist online; it was written in 1953 by Rev. Dr. Theodore O. Wedel, a canon of the ... Read more

Helping Clergy Families

A great privilege and joy of my work with the Renewal Fellowship is that I get to have a lot of one-on-one conversations with our denomination’s ministers. There are many areas of discussion. I have shared some of the heartbreaking issues that many of our clergy face. What I am going to talk about now ... Read more

Recovering Joy

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. (Philippians 4:4-6) About five years ago, I was visiting my sister at ... Read more

Resurrection-Shaped Renewal

The Canadian vernacular has several expressions, such as paradigm shift, watershed or game changer to describe a significant alteration in life. Things will now be radically different. The Christian Church has long contended that the historical shift in human existence is Jesus’ resurrection. Jaroslav Pelikan, a renowned historian, expressed this truth thus: “If Christ is ... Read more

The Gold Standard

February is usually the coldest month for us in Central Ontario; though friends and lovers do have an opportunity to share a little warmth halfway through on Valentine’s Day. Love is a pretty central theme to Jesus’s teachings and example. Not only was love commanded but it was set out as the primary factor for ... Read more