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Meet Our SDBC Elders: Gerard van Dop

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This week we hear from Gerard van Dop! Follow along as he outlines how long he has served as an elder and what originally prompted him to become an elder. We are blessed to have Gerard as an SDBC board member!

How long have you attended SDBC and how long have you served on the Board of Elders?
Donna and I started attending when the doors of the new facility first opened in 1988. Currently, I am serving in the third year of my fourth term.

What was it that prompted you to join the Board of Elders?
I was sitting in the back of a service, 55 years ago, one of seven young teenage boys, listening to a very stimulating preacher. He was great and serious, but oh, so humorous that our snickering became just too much. He ordered us all to sit in the front row to quiet down, and, leaning over the pulpit glaringly, he adjourned us, "How many of you boys are preparing yourselves to be elders in God's assembly?" I can still hear those words as if they were yesterday. This foremost exhortation burrowed into my being. I came to realize it was the normal aspiration and responsibility of any mature spiritual man to care for others in the local church and to be ready, when asked, to become an elder.

What is your specific role on the board?
In the past I have had numerous roles but, currently, I am responsible for interviewing and welcoming new members. As a nurse, I also try to highlight best practices in health.

What does it mean for you, personally, to be a part of the Board of Elders at SDBC?
I realize the significance of pastoring others when life challenges are both minimal and extreme since it affects current choices and the resultant eternal consequences. It takes time and study, care and prayer. It can be stressful at times but it is also rewarding and stimulating to see God working in others' lives.

Lately, due to mandatory social distancing, it has been difficult to build camaraderie as a "band of brothers" as we have had no meals together and our annual elder board retreat was suspended. Hopefully conditions will soon allow us to foster better interaction.

How does being on the board both challenge and encourage you in your life and walk of faith?
Being an instrument in the hand of a mighty God is humbling, fearful, demanding, exciting, and invigorating, often at the same time.

Four years ago, I had a near fatal brain hemorrhage but the Lord restored my health in an amazing fashion so he must have had more work for me to do. I love teaching God's word and watching people respond to it with conviction. That is both my greatest challenge and encouragement!

Please pray for Gerard as he continues to serve, love, teach, and minister to the church as an elder. You can click here to email encouragement to Gerard.

Posted by Mary Grierson

Sunday Service Changes

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Dear Church Family,

We continue to move forward, ready to pivot, as we progress through the various steps of BC's Restart Plan. Now that we are officially in Step 2 and are able to hold services at 10% capacity, we appreciate your flexibility as we make ongoing changes to our Sunday mornings.

We will continue to hold in-person services at 9 and 11AM (including livestreaming both the 9 and 11AM services), but each service will now be open to 130 people throughout the main auditorium (10% capacity). This means we will no longer need to hold two separate service events during the two morning services. Instead, when you pre-register for a service, you are now free to sit on the main level or in the balcony, almost like normal!

When you arrive for the 9 or the 11AM in-person service, you are free to enter through the 56th Street entrance or the courtyard entrance. You will then check-in at the welcome table in the foyer and choose to sit anywhere in the main auditorium. We will continue to hold our Sunday morning Kids program during the 11AM service. For our Kids program, details regarding pre-registration and onsite check-in have not changed.

Finally, if you are wondering if anything significant has changed regarding our onsite COVID-19 safety guidelines and precautions, Step 2 did not include any changes. This means we are still following all of our current guidelines regarding masks, social distancing, and singing. We look forward to having more people join us in-person on Sunday mornings while also livestreaming both the 9 and 11AM services!

Posted by Jordan Scott

Welcome Rebecca!

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Church family: Please welcome Rebecca van den Brink to our staff! Rebecca has been hired as our Director of Discipleship and Care Ministries. She brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in the areas of discipleship and compassion ministries. She graduated from Regent College with a Master of Arts in Applied Theology and has a proven track record of establishing discipleship plans and discipling relationships in multiple churches in different countries. As noted in our Vision Night/AGM, we are preparing to transition out of this pandemic and our emphasis will be on authentic relationships that lead to missional living and growth as disciples of Jesus. Rebecca will play a key role in helping our church family embrace these Christ-centred relationships. If you want to know more about our discipleship plan and care ministries, please tune in to our fall sermon series called, HOME. Furthermore, if you would like to get to know Rebecca, please check out our podcast episode coming soon where we will interview Rebecca so that you can get to know her personally and to understand her professional experiences that led her to be the best person for this role at our church.

I am absolutely thrilled to work alongside Rebecca to serve our church family well. I trust God will bless our church through her. You can personally welcome Rebecca to our team by sending her an encouraging email. Rebecca also asks you to pray for her as she develops a discipleship plan that fits our church family best. She believes in the power of prayer, so she is asking the church family to pray for this discipleship plan to yield fruit for God's glory.

Posted by Paul Park

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