Feb1MonFebruary 1, 2021
Jesus told the large crowd to sit down on the grass. He asked his disciples to bring what food they had to Him. "Not much," they thought. Jesus took the fives loaves and two fish in His hands. Then He looked up toward heaven. This is a season to look up toward heaven. While counting fish, collecting bread, and serving others are part of our obedience (our acts of worship), looking up toward heaven is our first step. I am captured by the order as I follow Jesus...He looked up toward heaven, blessed the resources in His hands, broke the bread and handed it to His disciples who, in turn, served the people (Matthew 14:19). And so, we look up and listen up – anticipating the voice, provision, miracles and direction of God our Father.
On Tuesday, January 26, 2021, we hosted our first of future Family Chats – an opportunity for the EMCC family to come together (albeit on Zoom) to "get caught up" and connect. We have two upcoming Chats planned for February 23 and April 13 to prepare us for our online General Assembly on April 30, 2021. Click here to register for any of these Chats. If you miss one, you can find a YouTube link to a recording on here.
We are asking our Credentialed Ministers to complete a brief survey in place of our usual annual reports. 2020 reporting will be unique in this way. Further, we have been working behind-the-scenes to initiate a new integrated database platform that will accommodate better record keeping and information flow. This will eventually tie together our database, website, credentialing, and reporting.
Like many of you, this past fall, we went through our budget process for 2021. Actually, we went through the process twice because of so many changing variables. The result is: a reduced budget based on Covid economic projections (10 percent reduction), a balanced budget, which has always been the mandate from the National Board, and a combined budget, merging the World Partners operations budget into our EMCC general operating budget. The practical consequence of this action has led to the right-sizing of our National Team. After April 30, 2021, we will move forward with one Director of World Partners. This difficult decision does not in any way diminish our calling to be on mission for Jesus to the world. World Partners remains our mission mobilization arm and needs to be vitally integrated into the fabric of EMCC.
After much discernment, Nicole Jones-Qandah has been chosen to become the Director of World Partners, moving from her position as Assistant Director. Joel Zantingh will conclude his time on the National Team at the end of April. In the meantime, he remains our Director of World Partners and is graciously working with Nicole on this transition. We honour Joel for his significant and meaningful contributions to EMCC over these many years. He remains our friend, a life-time grant EMCC minister in good standing, and EMCC ambassador, available as a minister-at-large to the EMCC family. We will host a celebration to honour Joel and a commissioning time for Nicole in the future.
This season for EMCC has become a time of decentralizing and mobilizing. Pastors are reaching out to fellow pastors in care, coaching, and resourcing to enhance our Regional Ministers' work. A Next Gen Team has formed to resource next generation leaders. A SALT Team is developing resources to help in our conversations around current social issues. We will look to recruit an advisory team and others to support Nicole and World Partners. These teams will be introduced in the days ahead.
Following Jesus together,