News

Updates and highlights from BC Conference. The three most recent stories are published to the homepage.

Pastoral Letter for Ash Wednesday 2018

Dear Sisters & Brothers in Christ,

As we enter into the season of Lent, traditionally a season of introspection and penitence, we are aware of the attention of our nation on the acquittal of Gerald Stanley in the shooting death of Colton Boushie.

We would like to invite the United Church in BC, its members and its congregations, to be prayerful during this season about the ways in which racism is internalized in us, and in our institutions (including the church) in Canada. We repent of misuse of power. We repent of the outflow of colonialism and the harm it has done to our relationships. The journey of reconciliation takes more than just a few years, and it certainly takes more than words… though words do have power to heal or hurt.

Naramata Centre celebrates 70th anniversary

Naramata Centre turns 70 this year!

Naramata Centre has a long and proud history and we are excited to celebrate our 70th anniversary in 2018. Watch for information about activities and events to mark this important event in the life of Naramata Centre!

Tens of thousands of people affiliated with the United Church have benefitted from the Centre since the official opening in 1948. Often the Centre hosted 350 people on site for a peak summer week! Generations of families cherish fond memories of their time in our inclusive, welcoming community and thousands of young people have been inspired by their experiences at the Centre. The Centre's culture and values have guided staff and volunteers for seven decades. 

Join the magic of Naramata Centre community this summer by taking a program or celebrating with us as we mark the 70 wonderful years that Naramata Centre has been changing lives for the better!

Watch the Naramata Centre website for updates and details.

Message from our president, Cari Copeman-Haynes, regarding the interm report on regional council boundaries

Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,

With yesterday's release of the Interim Report of the Boundaries Commission, we move into a time of reflecting, responding, and listening intently to one another and the Spirit. The mission of Christ’s church is not dependent on the ways in which we structure our life together, but these relationships and functions impact us as we carry out our ministry in response to Jesus’ call.

So I would like to encourage you, whether you are a congregation member, an ordained, diaconal or lay minister, a lay leader in your congregation’s board, a presbyter, and/or a participant in the life of our Conference, to take a good look at the proposed boundaries of the 17 regions as proposed by the Commission. You can find the information here:

 http://www.united-church.ca/news/interim-report-regional-council-boundaries

The Sussex Redevelopment - Building Jubilee United's New Congregational Home

Jubilee United Church breaks ground on its new development!

It’s been a long and winding road, but this summer the Redevelopment Project at Sussex achieved a huge milestone – the Rezoning Application was approved by the City of Burnaby and we are finally in the position to begin construction. To mark this occasion, several members of Jubilee United – and its antecedent congregations, South Burnaby and West Burnaby United – gathered for a ground-breaking ceremony at 6050 Sussex Avenue on July 31st. Dave English and Charlotte Au, the Project Manager and Project Coordinator from Townline, participated in the event led by Rev. Graham Brownmiller, along with Terry Harrison and Doug Goodwin from BC Conference (who took the pictures).

Pictured: REDEVELOPOMENT LEADERSHIP COMMITTEE MEMBERS – PAST AND PRESENT: LEN, BARBARA, GRAHAM, TERRY, DAVE, BILL, BARBARA, CHARLOTTE AND KEN (MISSING: BRIAN AND LINDA)

More details and photos available in this update.

Email Fraud - August 14, 2017

A document was emailed out from someone claiming to be Cari Copeman-Haybes. DO NOT OPEN. This is spam.  Communications from Cari as Conference President will always come from a BC Conference email address. Once again, please do not open the attachment that was sent today.

 

Peace,

BC Conference

Pastoral letter regarding summer 2017 wildfires in BC

BC Conference President Cari Copeman-Haynes writes to all of those in BC Conference:

This weekend has marked the most extraordinary set of circumstances with regard to fires in the interior of our province for more than a decade. Hot weather, dry lightning, high winds, and human activity have all conspired to endanger many people in many parts of our province due to the huge spread of fire through dry tinder.

Many of our congregations are ministering right in the heart of the threatened and enflamed territory. Some of our people are among those evacuated from their homes, and others are among those who seek to support and house those who have been evacuated. And meanwhile, the fires keep on starting (97 new fires on Saturday alone) and spreading.

At a time like this, when fear, anxiety, loss and dislocation trouble the hearts of many of our neighbours (and ourselves) in BC Conference, we turn to prayer, we turn to Scripture, and we turn to each other.

Continue reading.

The United Church of Canada sends this prayer to all.

Youth and Young Adult Ministry Sunday

Youth and Young Adult Ministry Sunday

Fourth Sunday of September:  September 24.2017         
BC Conference – The United Church of Canada

We invite you as communities of Faith to gather for worship on this Sunday or another in 2017, to celebrate and engage with Young People.  If you have youth in your congregation or you don’t, if you are seeking ways to connect and share with them, if you are seeking ways to bring awareness and honor to this ministry, then this service is created for you. 

Naramata to reduce its 23-acre footprint

May 18, 2017

Over the next few years, Naramata Centre will sell a portion of its 23 acres in the heart of Naramata village. The Centre's Board of Directors arrived at some difficult, but necessary, decisions this spring and presented the plans to Society members this month.

Naramata Centre Society Board Chair, Doug Wollard, says "We believe by creating a smaller footprint we can operate in a way that fits the demand in today's world. Having fewer acres will require less maintenance, and will better fit our registration requirements as the Centre no longer hosts large conferences."

Read the full press release. More information on future plans are here in the Centre's newest newsletter.

BC Conference United Church Women Annual General Meeting

Start Date: 
Apr 27 2017 - 9:30am - 3:30pm

Thursday, April 27, 2017
Golden Ears United Church
22165 Dewdney Trunk Road, Maple Ridge, BC

9:30 am – 3:30 pm

Contact lynn [at] kluane [dot] net (Lynn Lancaster) for more information.

 

 

Saskatchewan Conference Refugee Action

Saskatchewan Conference takes action for refugees: increase sponsorships and end the Safe Third Country Agreement

On Friday, January 27th US President Trump signed an Executive Order that temporarily halts all resettlement of refugees to the US, halves the number of refugees to be resettled in the current year, and bars Syrian refugees and discriminates against refugees of Muslim faith or background. The Order also imposes a temporary ban on the admission of nationals of seven predominantly Muslim countries.

Over the past year, United Church people have welcomed thousands of refugees into their communities.  As people of faith, the church continues to ask and respond in this time and place to Jesus’ question: “And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you?” (Matthew 25).

Take action
There are positive, immediate steps Canada can take to respond to this crisis, but our government will need to hear that message from us.  Read the full call to action.

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