Passport 2017: Journey to Easter

Image Credit:  Anglican Journal

Guest post courtesy of First Baptist Church, Charlottetown, PEI

Welcome to Holy Week, that deeply spiritual period that spans from Palm Sunday to Easter Sunday.

I encourage you to enter into a time of personal preparation by using this devotional booklet as a passport to the passion of Jesus.  All through Holy Week, the sanctuary of First Baptist Church in Charlottetown, PEI, will be set up with various interactive stations designed to immerse you in the final days of Jesus’ life, from His Triumphal Entry to the Last Supper, the cross, and ultimately the Resurrection.  You are invited to use this booklet as a self-guided “Journey to Easter”.  Call the church office (902-628-2111) to book a time for your group or for yourself.

Eight contributors from First Baptist Church have penned these articles.  May God guide you by His Spirit as you seek to walk the path Jesus trod into the joy of the New Life!

Easter blessings,

Pastor Dave

Download your copy of Passport 2017 – Journey to Easter.

2017 Easter Events at PEI Baptist Churches

Image Credit:  Happy Easter 2017

Palm Sunday, April 9:

April 11-13:

  • Self-guided “Journey to Easter” interactive stations at First Baptist Church, 235 Prince Street, Charlottetown; please call the church office at 902-628-2111 to book a time for you or your group

Maundy Thursday, April 13:

Good Friday, April 14:

Easter Sunday, April 16:

Image Credit:  Global Network for the Study of Human Rights and the Environment

I’m a bit of a superhero movie nerd.  I watch them over and over.  I watched Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man so many times that the VHS tape wore out.  I own Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy and the Iron Man trilogy and have watched both several times.  With the advent of Netflix, I can binge-watch movies from the Marvel Cinematic Universe as many times as I want without even leaving my chair to switch from one movie to the next (assuming I can find the remote).

X-Men: Days of Future Past

One of the more prolific movie series based on Marvel comics is the X-Men series.  There are currently ten X-Men movies and related spin-offs and there are five other X-Men-related films in development.  One of my favourites from the X-Men series is X-Men: Days of Future Past.

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Image Credit:  Comic Vine

In the movie, Wolverine (pictured in the centre) goes back in time to try to prevent an assassination that will trigger the creation of highly sophisticated robotic weapons that target mutants and humans that carry the mutant gene, eventually leading to the annihilation of both mutants and humans.  I don’t think I’m spoiling the movie too much to say that the X-Men are successful in their quest.  I’ll let you watch the movie to find out how everything worked out in the end. Read More

About Those “20 Minutes of Action”

Image Credit:  Global News

I will not disgrace myself or this website by mentioning the name of the so-called man who was recently convicted of sexually assaulting a woman on Stanford University’s campus in January 2015.  I will not mention the name of the judge who handed down an extremely lenient sentence of six months in county jail and three years of probation when the recommended sentence for such a conviction is between eight and twenty years in state prison.  I will not mention the names of those who have callously denied the seriousness of the crime by insisting that the attacker should not receive the recommended punishment; they believe the attacker is really a good kid who doesn’t deserve to experience the full consequences of his actions because it would ruin his potential.  All of these people are already receiving more than enough attention.

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Image Credit:  Special Broadcasting Service

I will, however, name and honour the two Swedish men, Carl-Fredrik Arndt and Peter Jonsson (pictured above), who saved the woman from further harm at the hand of her attacker.  They are the male heroes of this story.  I will also honour the female hero of this story – the woman herself, who continues to bravely face the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual consequences brought about when someone broke the 10th commandment and coveted his neighbour’s body. Read More

Maybe We Shouldn’t Ask People to Read the Bible

Image Source:  The Gospel Coalition

At some point, someone in church has likely told you that you should be reading the Bible regularly.  When I was a child in Sunday School, we even sang a song about what happens when you read the Bible every day (and what happens when you don’t).  So why is it that so many people, whether they are regularly in the pews or not, don’t read the Bible each day?

Why We Don’t Read the Bible

First Things First

When I first volunteered for a children’s summer reading program that our church was offering to the community, a representative from the PEI Literacy Alliance came to explain to the volunteers why literacy is such an important issue on PEI.  I was surprised to learn that almost two-thirds of Islanders have limited reading skills.  It was then that I realized that when churches ask people to read the Bible, they may be asking them to do something they literally are not equipped to do. Read More

Fort McMurray Relief Fund

The devastating fires in Fort McMurray, AB, have had a tragic affect on families and communities. Thousands have been displaced without know[ing] if they have a home to go back to. The video and images coming out of the area are heart wrenching. Many of us in Atlantic Canada would know family & friends that have gone out west for work. This tragedy hits close to home for many.
If you’re looking for a way to help here are a few options:

Here is a post that appeared on the CBWC website today:

The CBWC is working with Canadian Baptist Ministries to provide immediate emergency relief and assistance on the ground in Fort McMurray, Alberta. Together, we are working with the Salvation Army, the local Fellowship Baptist Church in Fort McMurray, and others supporting evacuees.

The unpredictability of the wildfires that began this past Tuesday have led the province of Alberta to call a state of emergency, and all of its 80,000 residents have been forced to flee with the fires having burned through about 85,000 hectares of land already. Mass convoys and airlifts are now getting thousands of evacuees to safety further south.

We continue to pray for the safety of all those impacted by the fire, who have lost their lands, homes and communities, as well as for all the emergency personnel on the ground, including the fire crews, military, RCMP officers, EMS workers, and all those who are working tirelessly to control the fires and keep residents safe.

Make a donation to the Fort McMurray relief effort in Alberta today. Your donations will automatically be designated to help people in need during this crisis. We thank you for your crucial support in caring for those in need in times of emergency.

Celebrating Our Spiritual Mothers

Image Source:  Atlas Obscura

Mother’s Day is a wonderful time to celebrate the women in our lives and the role they played in making us who we are today.  In honour of our spiritual mothers, I would like to share a post from Atlas Obscura entitled The Rebel Virgins and Desert Mothers Who Have Been Written Out of Christianity’s Early History (a 16-minute read at 3,902 words).

We tend to recognize the names of the Desert Fathers who founded early Christianity’s monasteries:

  • Athanasius of Alexandria, bishop of Alexandria (328-373), who is known for his defense against Arianism, the heretical assertion that Jesus was created by God and is, therefore, subordinate to God;
  • John Chrysostom, archbishop of Constantinople (398-404), who is known for the influence he wielded through his public speaking abilities (thus, his name Chrysostom, “golden-mouthed”); and
  • John Cassian, whose writings provided the basic concepts that Saint Benedict used to organize monasteries in the West.

We aren’t as familiar with the Desert Mothers – women such as: Read More

Hope In Spite of Suffering

Image Source:  Time Out 4 God

When I attended Crandall University, I took a course called “Suffering” (a biblical studies course).  I believe it ranked second in the category of Most Depressingly Titled Course after “Death and Grieving” (a psychology course).  Who knows?  Perhaps they now have even more dreary course options for those inclined to look at the darker side of life.  But I digress.

It should come as no surprise to anyone that there is suffering in this world.  We suffer physically, emotionally, and spiritually.  We suffer from natural disasters, illness, warfare, and cruelty over which we have no control.  We suffer justly as a consequence of our own decisions and unjustly as a consequence of the decisions of those we know and of those we will never meet.  We suffer because of decisions made yesterday and hundreds of years ago, we suffer because of decisions made today, and we will suffer because of decisions made tomorrow. Read More

Happy Earth Day!

Image Source:  Meetings and Conventions PEI

Abegweit, Cradled on the Waves.  Million Acre Farm.  Garden of the Gulf.  Spud Island.

Prince Edward Island is certainly a beautiful, fertile place.  Its nicknames reflect the Island’s bounty.  Much of the Island’s economy is driven by agriculture, by fishing and aquaculture, and by the one million visitors who flock here every year to enjoy our homegrown food, beautiful surroundings, vibrant culture, and welcoming people.  Many Islanders depend on the environment for their livelihood, directly and indirectly.

Islanders realize the importance of taking care of their surroundings.  Whether they are maintaining their lawns, planting flower and vegetable gardens, sorting their garbage to separate recyclables and compost from waste, or participating in the annual PEI Women’s Institute Roadside Clean Up Day, every Islander does their part to keep PEI beautiful.  Islanders are proud of where they come from and make sure the appearance of their homes and businesses reflects that pride. Read More

CABC Alpha Workshop

Reposted from the CABC website:  http://baptist-atlantic.ca/media/videos/cabc-alpha-workshop/

In case you weren’t able to get to the CABC Alpha Workshops or join our livestream earlier this month, we recorded one and have it available for you here. The workshops were hosted by hr CABC and Alpha Canada led by Greg Jones (CABC) & Shaila Visser (National Director, Alpha Canada). This workshop was recorded at Bridgewater Baptist Church, Bridgewater, NS on April 5, 2016.

Trouble viewing video? Click here: https://vimeo.com/atlanticbaptist/cabc-alpha

More info on how your church can use Alpha and the new materials being released, go to http://www.alphacanada.org.