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COMMUNITY NEWS

 

 

HOW  TO  CHOSE  A  CHURCH

 

 

 

FAITH

 

 

Part Two of Three

 

 

MYRTLE MACDONALD, B.SC, U of ALBERTA, M.SC.A., MCGILL UNIVERSITY—FILE PHOTO

THURSDAY—JU

 

 

ad to say this sort of loneliness happens in every church for young and old, so I hope those who read this will make up for lost time by including newcomers of all ages in sports, cultural activities and their homes. People get a sense of belonging from midweek groups. At present the men in our church have monthly meetings.

 

I notice that they also attend church every Sunday and are friends. A few people may be somewhat domineering but being also caring, they usually did not cause problems, cliques and power struggles. If they become familiar with the Bible, they absorb the nature and principles of Christ. They become friends by participating in midweek groups.
 

I served in India again 1978-81 and enjoyed the Church of North India, attended by Anglicans and Baptists. There was a daytime midweek group for older women. I found out about the WFCS (Womens Fellowship for Christian Service) and introduced that program to professional women. They loved it and still do.

 

Back in rural Canada in an Alliance church, an elder became powerful and ousted a pastor who had an effective ministry. To support a grieving elder's wife I did not leave, until after a new pastor had settled in. In 1987-88 I worked in the Church of Pakistan with missionaries from both south and north USA, with different attitudes. Some time later the church Clerk in a Canadian town assumed power and many people left. I stayed longer than most, trying to be peacemaker.
 

Churches have various forms of semi-democratic leadership. Some denominations do not have bishops. In some, Bishops have administrative authority. In others they are advisory only. Moravian Brethren Bishops have no authority except to visit all the churches to stimulate revival and to find suitable people to nominate for ordination as a Bishop.
 

Eastern Orthodox churches are autocephalous, independent without a pope or central authority.

 

Congregational, Baptist and most Community churches are independent of sister churches. They choose their own pastor. However they do have conferences and theological schools where they share their faith and train ministers. The Vancouver School of Theology educates Anglican, United, Baptist and Presbyterian clergy. The faculty consists of representatives from all.
 

The Alliance Church and Fellowship Baptist have Calvinist polity. There are many kinds of Baptist. Because they originated in Scandinavia, Germany, Ukraine, England, Scotland, north USA and south USA their governance, customs, mission fields and life style vary greatly. Most have congregational governance.

 

In New Brunswick most came north during the War of Independence because of loyalty to Great Britain. With British Baptists in Nova Scotia they formed the United Baptist Convention, the largest denomination in the Maritime provinces. Some differences in theology remained. I was present in 1975 when some NB churches made a motion that the Bible was inspired verbally (word for word). When a respected pastor asked “ In which language?” the motion was defeated, unity rescued.

 


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