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Alpha 2018

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Alpha is a series of interactive sessions, exploring the basics of the Christian faith. Alpha in the Chapel at SDBC will begin Sunday, January 14th, will take place from 4-6PM, for nine weeks, and it is free to attend. Each session will look at a different question and is designed to create conversation.

Everyone coming to Alpha in the Chapel will find no pressure and no follow-up. It will be an open, honest place to discuss and explore life's big questions.
 
There are only three elements to Alpha: 

1. Food: at 4PM a meal will be served, provided by SDBC community groups, where you can get to know others in a casual, easy environment. Great friendships often revolve around food. 

2. Talk: there will be a video presentation from Alpha dealing with one of life's challenging questions; such as, “Who is Jesus,” “Why and How do I Pray?” and “How Does God Guide Us?” 
 
3. Discussion: this is the most important part of Alpha and provides a chance to share thoughts and ideas about the video, without being corrected or judged. It’s an opportunity to hear from others and contribute your own perspectives.

Perhaps you have a friend or co-worker you could invite. Alpha provides you with a solid opportunity to move your relationship to a higher level. Attend Alpha with them. For nine weeks we will be hosting this opportunity for you to act missionally with a friend. You, and your friend, can sign up to attend this course at www.southdelta.org/alpha

If you have signed up to be a table leader for Alpha, please plan on attending our Table Leaders Training Seminar on Sunday, January 7th at 4PM. This seminar will have some training videos and coaching from former Alpha directors.
 
Alpha is a great way to begin a new year. I hope you will consider who God would ask you to invite. Is Alpha a future God-story in your life?

Posted by Rick Burdett

Reflecting on 2017

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We began the year with a new strategic plan based on our new mission statement, We Honour Jesus Who Gives Hope to All. This led us to adopt a new vision for SDBC: Love Like Jesus.

Five underlying parts of the new vision and some goals to accomplish are: 

1. Love Like Jesus: Speaking Truth
a. Use of exegetical preaching involving teaching through bible books – 1 Corinthians, then James, now 1 Samuel.
b. Sunday school class studied Revelation and now the Pentateuch.
c. We signed up with Right Now Media to provide a huge library of resources to people at home to use.
d. Provided oversight of what our community groups were studying.  

2. Love Like Jesus: Engaging Culture
a. We have held three leadership training conferences to date.
b. We targeted implementing an all-church discipleship program to be completed by September 2017. We have used our community groups to help us achieve this but we have not fully met this goal as of yet.
c. We targeted implementing ALPHA following Christmas this year and we are on track to make this happen.
d. Both the staff and the elders held separate retreats to pray and challenge themselves with how to lead the church.
 
3. Love Like Jesus: Building Community
a. We promised to advance community groups in an effort to be a church of community groups rather than a church with community groups. We have done this nearly every week from the pulpit and in newsletters.
b. Our goal was to increase our community group attendance from 50% to 75% of our regular attendees. We have accomplished this.
c. We targeted holding six large-scale events in 2017, inviting the whole church to participate in large gatherings. We were able to do this four times.
d. We targeted hiring a full-time worship director to oversee our worship ministries programming to help us establish a blended, 70 minute service that encompasses worship music, baptisms, preaching, and communion. We were able to accomplish this in September with the addition of Gatlin Saip to our team.
e. Women’s Ministry was heavily involved in the major Beth Moore conference.
f. Men’s Ministry hosted an event with Wally Buono as the guest speaker.
 
4. Love Like Jesus: Equipping to Serve
a. To hold training and discipleship seminars as described above. Our focus was more on leadership development and this was demonstrated by the advancement of Pastors Paul and Jordan as preachers and by them leading the church administratively. It was also demonstrated by bringing Kyle McDonald on to our staff and having Pastor Jordan mentor him. It involved mentoring Mary Uher by Pastor Paul and myself. It involved the continuing mentoring by Pastor Paul of Kaitlyn Shipowich and Megan Johnson as they assumed more active roles in our children’s ministry program.
b. This involved development plans and protecting and unleashing these people to pursue their areas of responsibilities and monitoring them. There is the development of many leaders this past year. Janet Boivin is pouring into many younger women in our Women’s Ministry programs. Our Men's Ministry continues to reach out to the younger generation to help us lead this ministry. Kin Village has experienced new leadership under Chris Burdett and Dianne Noton. Kelley Krahn continues her excellent oversight of Community Dinner, and Stephen Ministry continues to develop all of our Stephen Ministry servants.
c. We have made this past year a year of leadership development all across the church. We have in place many solid young people leading a new generation of leaders for SDBC. 
d. Our church took active roles in the Franklin Graham Crusade. This involved over 20 of our people engaged in helping as counsellors at the crusade.

5. Love Like Jesus: Move from Self-Interest to Self-Sacrifice
a. We have a goal of increasing our tithe and offering giving by 10%. To date, we have not accomplished this goal. We have one more month and we are praying that God will lead people into giving sacrificially.
b. We offered two short-term missions opportunities this year. Pastor Jordan led a team to Guatemala and Gerald Neufeld and I just completed a trip to India where we were able to teach pastors there. We also had Abbey Olive, Lauren Wootton, and Matthew Lawrie complete solo mission trips with some off-campus ministries.
c. We targeted an increase in those serving in our compassion ministries by 10%. I know we have had an increase in those serving but I have not been able to properly evaluate this.
d. We targeted using the SDBC facilities to launch a non-English speaking congregation this year. We haven't been able to launch a new church yet, however with the addition of Ryan Choi to our staff, we are making progress in this area.

The most significant event at SDBC in 2017 was the promotion of Pastor Paul Park as our lead pastor. This hiring consumed a lot of time, effort, and energy from the members of the search team and our elders. The support for our church moving forward under Paul’s leadership is very strong. We have seen this young pastor for several years grow in his preaching and leadership. I look forward with a joyful heart to the coming year serving under his authority. 

Lastly, for Chris and I, we are so grateful for the past 19 months of serving SDBC as the interim lead pastor. It was a time of great joy, and at times hardship, but the Lord was always present in our midst and serving here at SDBC is a privilege we hold very dear. Chris and I wish you all a merry and holy Christmas!

Posted by Rick Burdett

Why Give Sacrificially?

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The Christmas season reminds us that generosity is still valued highly in our culture. Many of us buy Christmas presents for family and friends, we write cards to express appreciation and love, and several of us engage in acts of charity and philanthropy this time of the year. We’re reminded by culture that giving to loved ones and to those who are in need is a good thing, and it’s absolutely true; the bible teaches that we must give generously to those who are in need and that “God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Cor. 9:7; Rom. 12:13).

In light of the spirit of giving during this season, let’s reflect on the best gift we could possibly offer to this world—and that’s the gift of Jesus who brings perfect hope, peace, joy, and love. First, this world is a needy place; it’s a broken place. It desperately needs Jesus. We are sent as messengers and ambassadors of Christ to deliver the good news to this world that needs Jesus. Second, we ought to love this broken world because that’s what our God did: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son…” (John 3:16a, emphasis mine). So, if we ought to love this world and we agree that it’s desperately in need, should we not give the gift of Jesus to this broken world? Should we not give the gift of light into this darkness? 

Here’s the important thing—if we’re serious about giving this gift of Jesus, we ought to give sacrificially. You may ask yourself, “I understand why I must be a cheerful giver, but why do I have to be sacrificial?” History teaches us that the Holy Spirit works powerfully when believers give sacrificially (Acts 2:45, 4:34; Ex. 36:5; 1 Kgs. 17:13; Mt. 26:7; Lk. 21:4). When Jesus followers gave their material goods, time, and even their lives sacrificially, the early church exploded with powerful growth. Conversely, when the church became selfish and consumeristic, even though it had fancy buildings and powerful influence on government, the church saw corruption and did not experience the power of the Holy Spirit in ways that the early church did. This is true because Jesus leads the way by exemplifying sacrifice as a means of giving this gift of love. Jesus sacrifices by leaving the glories of heaven and coming to be born in a manger—to put on flesh. He sacrifices Himself on the cross and offers Himself to the world as a gift. Thus, giving must be sacrificial. If we desire to participate in sharing the most precious gift of Jesus with our community, we must give sacrificially because that’s how Jesus led the way. He tells us to take up our cross and follow Him in giving ourselves sacrificially to this world. And this is exciting because upon the foundation of Jesus’ sacrifice and our participation in His sacrifice, I believe we will be able to give the gift of Jesus to our South Delta community. Please join my family in giving joyfully and sacrificially this season!

Blessings,

Paul Park

Posted by Paul Park

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