Saturday, October 30, 2010

Hockey night in Hanover (I mean Mildmay)

Tonight I'm dusting off my hockey gear and lacing up the skates for the first time in a few years.

It's not a pre-Halloween trick; rather, a couple of guys from the congregation invited me to join them on the ice for the season.

My goal is to represent the Spirit of Jesus on and off the ice (a difficult feat for any hockey player who follows Jesus, especially when playing in a church league!).

I'd also like to put the biscuit in the basket at least once.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

The church talks

Thanks to Alanna, our creative communications expert, HMC has started an online conversation about life, ministry, and anything else we choose to write about. In other words, we've started a blog.

You can check it out by clicking here.


Friday, October 22, 2010

T-Bird flys again

Today marks the return of my 1989 T-Bird. I surrendered it into the capable hands of my mechanic about a week and a half ago. It was blowing smoke--the white, sweet-smelling type. Car people tell me that's a bad sign. The actual diagnosis was dire: I needed a new engine.

Thankfully, I landed a great deal on a used one. It's five years newer and there's 100,000 fewer kilometers.

Now, the Bird is back home and it drives exactly like it did before.

Hopefully I'll get a few more years of cheap cruising before it crashes again.

P.S. the car in the picture is not my t-bird. There aren't enough stickers.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Are You our next Children and Family Pastor?

We're looking for someone who has a heart for kids and their families to join our staff.

If you're interested in finding out more, visit our church's website.

Required - knowing how to do ministry with these:

Not Required (But an asset) - Owning one of these:

Thursday, October 7, 2010

It Bugs Me

Many of you know that I try to keep my Thursday afternoons reserved for non-church activities.

So here's a play-by-play of this afternoon.

After playing a round of scream and run with my kids we rounded up insects for a science project. We started with some basic ones like a house fly and wood louse before moving on to some more exotic and potentially scary ones.

To our great surprise we were able to collect a dragonfly and a live wasp. (Don't ask me how we wrestled an angry wasp into a Ziploc bag without getting stung).

After being tagged and bagged, they went into the freezer for a couple of hours.

Then, voila, our very own bug collection--complete with labels and pins.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Characteristics of a worship leader

Recently I shared with worship team members that we need to strengthen our leaders and strengthen our teams. After chatting about this we decided to spend a few weeks praying about leadership. The question we asked was, "Do we have our strongest, most gifted people leading our worship teams?" As a prayer aid, I crafted these five essential traits of an HMC worship leader. The teams have been perusing this for over a week so I thought I'd let the rest of the world in on it now to.

Here they are, in no particular order:

1. Living out the love of God

Worship leaders must love God above all else. This is evident by the fruit being produced—the fruit of the Spirit. They manifest love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. They are not grumpy and don’t think primarily about their own preferences. They are quick to forgive, not easily angered and they don’t speak negatively about others.

2. Commitment

Team leaders carry an extra load. They think about the songs and flow of the service before practice. They show up early to turn on the lights, photocopy songs, and prepare themselves and the team for practice. They are also able to commit to meeting monthly with the other worship team leaders to plan upcoming services, encourage the other leaders, and share new skills and ideas.

3. Team Leader

Worship leaders are team players. They care about their team members and the people in the congregation. They see themselves as leading one harmonious group of congregants and band members in adoration of our great God. They have a picture of how they would like the congregation to respond (with joy or reflection? With self-examination or seeing the needs of my neighbour?) They are sensitive to congregational needs and they feel responsible for addressing those needs. They hold themselves accountable when team members aren’t getting along and they are the first to encourage the team and the congregation. They never see the team and congregation separated—from an “us” and “them” paradigm. And they work hard to honour young and old as they work toward the accomplishment of the vision.

4. Musicality

Team leaders need to be musical. They need to be strong singers and know how bands function musically. The leader should be aware of song flow and band dynamics. They should have some basic musical training and know something about how different band instruments work together. If an instrument is out of tune, someone is singing off key, or a 4/4 timed song is being played in 6/8, the leader should know something is not quite right.

5. Openness

Worship leaders are naturally open. They are eager to invite new people to join their team. They are open to learning new songs and new talents (ie. speaking between songs, discovering an old hymn in a new skin…). They are open to leading people in hymns, choruses and everything in between. They are open to criticism and they are willing to listen and respond when congregants and team members have questions or concerns.

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