Advent & Christmas

Wait a minute… We’re talking about Advent and Christmas already?! Wasn’t it just yesterday we were walking around in sandals? In this year of incredible disruptions, we now find ourselves at the front end of the season of Advent. Of all the things we don’t know, one thing we know for sure is that this season won’t be like any of the other Christmases we’ve experienced. Yet, the core reason we celebrate remains unchanged. The challenge is to find ways to root ourselves in the beauty of the CHRISTmas season while living in the times we do.

What does it mean for us to wait for the Messiah in this season with many of our regular traditions stripped back? There will be no huge parties, no group celebrations or traditional fanfare and, most likely, no large extended family gatherings. That’s a lot of “no”s! What does it look like for us to say “yes” to Jesus and still prepare to celebrate his coming in a time like this? This year our guiding idea for Advent is “Getting Ready to Celebrate”.

Each Sunday there will be a theme leading us in progression to Christmas Eve – all aimed at helping us get ready to celebrate Jesus’ coming and presence among us: Invitation > Preparation > Waiting > Arrival. Along with each Sunday’s theme there will be an “engagement activity”. These will be fun and simple opportunities to explore the topic in a practical and creative way. Advent packages explaining these activities will be delivered before advent to every household with a child or youth – but this does’t preclude others from participating. As everyone does participate in the activity, we’re encouraging us all to take pictures and post to our Facebook or Instagram using the hashtag: #WCVadvent2020. Instructions will be given online every Sunday morning.

A Ham for everyone: Sadly, we’re not going to be able to gather together as we have in years past to enjoy each other’s company at our annual feast. However… we have purchased a whole hog-load of hams (say that fast 10 times!) and we’d like everyone in WCV to get one. The idea is simple: to bless everyone in the community and provide opportunities for connection. We are going to package up the hams along with some extra supplies for our Christmas Eve service this year. You can watch for these deliveries mid December.

Speaking of Christmas Eve, we’re working on plans and will update you as they are firmed up.

Lastly, if find yourself struggling this season, please don’t do so alone… reach out to your Home Group leader, a member of the Leadership Team, Andy at the office, or a trusted friend. If you know of someone who could use some extra groceries, please contact the office and we can make arrangements to share some food (we will give you an extra ham and you can add to it to make a meal). We are here to help.

Cover Photo by Cristian Escobar on Unsplash

Advent Package Deliveries

Good Thursday WCV,

In the next two days (Nov 27-28) someone will be delivering an Advent Engagement Package to your door! So glad that deliveries are A-okay during Covid! We hope that this will be a fun way for our whole community to engage in Advent activities as we prepare together, while we’re apart.

The theme for this year is ‘Getting Ready for a Party’. We want to engage in all the activities that you normally do as you anticipate gathering together, except that our focus is preparing for Jesus’ arrival. You can expect to engage in some party planning activities throughout the season. 

We hope that you’ll enter into the spirit of the season and enjoy the activities that we’ve put together for you. Please post your pictures on FB or Insta with the hashtag #WCVadvent2020

– Lani (Kids & Youth Ministries Director)

Cover Photo by Kira auf der Heide on Unsplash

Kids & Youth Ministries Director

We are excited to announce that we have hired a new Kids and Youth Ministries Director. After receiving quite a number of applications and conducting interviews with a few very strong candidates, the hiring team felt a strong sense that Lani Wiens was the right choice for us. She brings with her a wealth of experience in both kids and youth ministry, is creative and is ready to go! We are excited to welcome her to the team, and to the community. You’ll be hearing more from her in the coming weeks but in the meantime below is a little bio.

Welcome Lani!

Lani Weins

Hi, I’m Lani Wiens. Kelly and I left our organic farm in Saskatchewan and moved to Winnipeg on my birthday, Aug 24 of this year (we still own the farm but that’s another story). We’re following God’s invitation to start a new ministry called Firerunner under the supervision and in partnership with Multiply through the Trek program, so we’ve been ‘upstairs’ every day for the last two months. The building feels very much like home. One of our fellow Trek participants posted your ad in our group chat and I felt like it might just be for me. I’ve been involved with children and youth ministry for close to 30 years in one way or another.

Kelly and I have six kids (4 boys and 2 girls), our oldest is married and presented us with our first grandbaby earlier this year. The two youngest (and our dog) are with us and the other three are in Saskatoon, Montreal and Hepburn. We are looking forward to getting to know you and serve you. We like swimming in the creative stream through music, writing, storytelling, fabric, paint, renovating things, decorating things and general mayhem. We’re always up for a good board game, too.

Image Credit: Photo by SHOT on Unsplash

We Are Hiring! Kids & Youth Director

UPDATE (Oct 29): Please note the deadline for this position is passed. We are no longer accepting applications for this position.

We have some exciting news… we’re hiring! If you have energy and passion to see kids and youth grow in their love for God and want to inspire volunteers to do the same, perhaps this is for you.

We invite you to:

  1. Join with us and pray for the right person.

  2. Forward this opportunity to someone you think might be a good candidate, or  

  3. Apply yourself.

Job Description – Kids & Youth Director 2020 

 

>>Applications (resume and cover letter) can be submitted to Andrew via email, or dropped off at the WCV office. Check Job Description for full details. 

 

>>We will be accepting applications until October 28, 2020

Planning Meeting for Kid’s and Youth Ministries

Parents, guardians, and those who are passionate about kids and youth:

Please join us Sunday evening September 13th at 7:00 pm at 782 Main St. We would like to consider together how to best come alongside our kids and youth in their walks with God and we need you!

Kids are not the future church, they are the church of today. These years are critical. The majority of people who follow the Lord make a decision at some point between 4 and 14 years of age.  The next decade of their lives is the season where they deepen that faith and make a decision whether to continue this faith into the rest of their lives.

We have put a great deal of thought into the kids and youth ministries. Please consider the following questions that we explore
further on Sunday.

  • What are you longing for in regard to your children’s and/or youth’s spiritual formation?
  • Would you be comfortable bringing your kids or youth to an in-person ministry if chairs were set up to maintain physical distancing? What measures would you feel are important to ensure safety?
  • Are you comfortable with you kids/youth attending an in-person small group? If so, how many people or families would be a reasonable size for you?
  • What priorities would you have for kids and youth ministry in this next season?
  • What do you/does your family have to offer to join in or volunteer in the area of kids and youth?

We look forward to connecting on Sunday.  If for some reason you are
not able to attend, we would still love to hear from you
You can send in your responses to the questions above to the office. You can also let us know if you’d like to speak to someone in leadership directly. Thank you!

Photo by Anna Kolosyuk on Unsplash

CarePortal Heart – by Sara Epp

Here are some thoughts about CarePortal from Sara.

“If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it?” James 2:16

Anyone else ever have that verse just rankle? As much as I’m learning that prayer really can make miracles happen, sometimes it just feels like a cop-out. “Hey, that sucks – but I’ll pray for you!” Sometimes, we need to be the answer to the prayers that are made. Sometimes, we are the hands and feet of Jesus. 

When I started learning about CarePortal, I just knew I had to do it. Here’s how I can be a part of ministering to our community! Now, I haven’t been called to live in the North End. (Total respect and awe for those that have and do!) But CarePortal lets me see the needs of those around our church, and help be a part of the community that we are trying to create. CarePortal allows people like social workers to identify needs in the people and families they see, and share those needs with us – the church. Just like the classic starfish-on-the-beach story (google it if you haven’t read it!), we can’t help all needs – but we can help some. Sometimes we help because we know we just have to. 

Sometimes, we do just pray. Sometimes, we leave this one to God. Sometimes, we help … because we’ve been helped, because we’ve been loved, because we’ve been in a bad spot and because someone helped us, because Jesus asked us to. 

How does it work? CarePortal requests are generally entered by a social worker, and then shared with the nearest churches to that need. Churches can choose to answer a request, and then work together with the social worker to deliver the item(s) to the individual/family. Strollers, tables, mattresses – right now, sometimes it’s an old laptop and printer for schoolwork. The stories are simple, and the stories are beautiful.

All around us, there’s a broken world. The Kingdom hasn’t come yet. But it’s coming! Every act of helping, every act of love, it mends something – it brings us together and it brings the Kingdom a little closer. Every time we choose to reach out to someone else, it builds some community. It fights the darkness around us by lighting one little candle. 

This isn’t the only way – I hope this is happening all around you, large and small. But if you’re looking for a way to connect with some of the needs around us, some of those who just need a little help: strangers in a strange land, single moms and struggling families who could just use a little boost, a little help when the road is rough – CarePortal helps to connect us all. It’s that simple, and that profound. We (the CarePortal team) are really encouraging you to join CarePortal, not because this is the magic solution that will fix everything, but because it’s a really practical way to connect us to each other, and to those around us – to choose acts of kindness, one choice at a time. Building community, building the Kingdom, one piece at a time.

Reach out to Lillian Poetker if you’d like to be a part of the CarePortal team, and help build community and the Kingdom.

Some Updates to CarePortal

Dear WCV,

We are thrilled to announce that WCV has officially launched CarePortal!  Within one week we had 9 people join our response team. We would love for you to join as well! 

CarePortal is a platform that identifies the needs and mobilizes the church.  73 children in Winnipeg have been served already since November 2019.  There are currently 13 other churches in Winnipeg that have joined CarePortal. 

Our biblical roots can show our resilient faith, radical hospitality and outrageous generosity. We officially responded to one request so far. 

If you can respond to this following request please let Lillian know.

  • Single mattress for a four-year old girl
  • Single mattress for a nine-year old girl

Description of the need: A single mom with two girls, ages 4 and 9, does not have a strong network of people in her life. Recently concerns have come up with respect to the girls sleeping arrangements. Once looked into it was discovered that the girls would benefit from having new mattresses. The mother has limited resources, hence this request. Here at WCV we are committed to serving the most vulnerable. As things change in our world we can serve in an even greater capacity. To hear about the needs we’re working to meet, please join our CarePortal Response Team by taking 30 seconds to fill out a simple form here.

Once you are on our Response Team you will receive emails with current needs both from within our own community and from child-serving professionals. When you receive an email you have the opportunity to pray and to respond to the need. Simply click the button in the email and let us know how you can help! If you or someone you know has a need, you can submit it to Lillian Poetker or if you are on the CarePortal Response Team you can submit the need through our church landing page.

~ Lillian Poetker

“Kids Klip” – Jesus Invites Us All

Hey WCV Kids – here is another “klip” for you! In this video Dynel Davidson tells the story of John 6 where Jesus feeds 5,000 people.

Parents, make sure you’re receiving emails from Dynel! If you want to be added to the list, contact her at kids(at)wcvchurch.ca.

Jesus Invites Us All – Story of John 6

“Kids Klip” – the Story of John 13

Hey WCV Kids – here is another “klip” for you! In this video Dynel Davidson tells the story of John 13 where Jesus washes His disciples’ feet.

Parents, make sure you’re receiving emails from Dynel with resources and ideas. You can contact her at kids(at)wcvchurch.ca if you want to be added to the list.

How to Help – CarePortal

Here is a personal message and invitation to join CarePortal from Lillian Poetker:

Dear WCV,

I am sure many of you are inundated with emails, especially families with school age children. Although, I know many of you are wondering “How can we help in a unprecedented time like now?” Joining a response team from Winnipeg Centre Vineyard with CarePortal is one way we can respond. We can meet needs in our community around WCV, and also in our own church community. This might be overwhelming for you (and sometimes the thought of it overwhelms me). But it does not have to be.

To launch CarePortal we are looking for at least 5 people to join our response team. Please note the link below to respond to fill out the form. Once we have the 5 people we will officially launch and will be able to use CarePortal to respond to needs! There are amazing stories out there how families, singles & professionals have been blessed by the churches that have joined CarePortal. (See a testimonial).

Here at WCV we are committed to serving the most vulnerable. As things change in our world we can serve in an even greater capacity. To hear about the needs we’re working to meet, please join our CarePortal Response Team by taking 30 seconds to fill out a simple form here.

Once you are on our Response Team you will receive emails with current needs both from within our own community and from child-serving professionals. When you receive an email you have the opportunity to pray and to respond to the need. Simply click the button in the email and let us know how you can help! If you or someone you know has a need, you can submit it through our church landing page or by contacting Andy Wood or Lillian Poetker.
 
~ Lillian Poetker

CarePortal Vision

CarePortal is an online platform specifically designed to connect real-time needs of children and families with local partnering churches. Congregation members & community are promptly able to respond relationally to local needs through the local church.

God is using the church to have a direct impact on Child Welfare! Please take a look at the 2-minute testimonial video about CarePortal and the impact they are having on lives in our community.

We will be launching CarePortal in our own church very soon! We will host an interest lunch after Sunday morning service in the coming weeks. Please stay posted for more details!

CarePortal Launch @ WCV

CarePortal is an online platform specifically designed to connect real-time needs of children and families (identified by partnering child serving organizations, such as SafeFamilies & CFS) with local partnering churches. Congregation members & community are promptly able to respond relationally to local needs through the local church.

CarePortal started piloting in Winnipeg May 2019 and officially launched November 2019. So far, they have 12 churches working together to serve the needs of 2 referring agencies. They have seen 51 children’s needs met through CarePortal and are looking forward to being a part of the greater number of over 50,000 children served through CarePortal Internationally.

God is using the church to have a direct impact on Child Welfare and they are answering the call by saying yes to caring for the vulnerable children and families in our communities.

>>>Please note: WCV is postponing its launch date and interest lunch that was scheduled for this Sunday, March 22nd.