May 20, 2010
Dear brothers and sisters,
When I was a teenager, every pizzeria in New York City that I ordered pizza pies from had the same cheesy slogan printed on its cover:
You’ve tried the rest, now try the best
People tell me that New York pizza is the best. But to me, they all tasted pretty much the same. In the end, it wasn’t really about who made the best pizza, but which pizzeria my friends hung out at, which one was most convenient to get to, or which one had the friendliest owners (they all charged the same price). A pizzeria that thrived was able to provide all of these qualities that were completely unrelated to the taste of the pizza.
The same life changing gospel is shared here at Canaan, Jubilee Christian Center, and Abundant Life Christian Fellowship. We possess certain qualities that the other do not have (and vice versa). But our unique qualities enables us to proclaim Christ’s salvation in ways these other churches cannot.
So what makes Canaan’s English ministry distinct? Our leadership team is prayerfully reflecting on this question. We have discussed some ideas at last night’s English Leadership Team meeting and are planning some changes:
- We are talking about concepts such as “missional families” and “life stage ministries.”
- We are preparing to move English worship service to second floor this summer and to a later start time this fall.
- We will start a college and young adults ministry.
- We will hold an off-site English ministry retreat this fall.
- We will offer parenting support workshops alongside Vacation Bible School.
- We will plan ways to support parents.
- In order to reboot our service to Christ, we want to more fully follow Jesus’ way. So beginning in June, the Sunday messages will walk through Luke’s gospel.
I’m excited! I hope you are, too. Your input and suggestions are welcome! In sum, we want to draw upon all the gifts and strengths God gave us in order to make Canaan’s English ministry a great (if not “the best”) place for many to worship, grow, be equipped, and to be empowered! Won’t you join us?
* * * *
- Thanks William Effendy, Paul and Betty Hsu for joining the retreat planning team. We are narrowing the potential sites and identifying a theme and speaker. The team meets this Sunday over lunch. Please send your suggestions!
- For those of you who “enjoyed” the video clip that I showed last Sunday, here it is. It is called “Me worship for the ‘me’ church” and is sadly, hilarious:
- Have you noticed the updates on the Canaan website? Check out the photo gallery – some really nice pix of us worshipping and having fun. Go to www.ecanaan.org
- I didn’t have a chance to write an update last week. It was really busy in a good way:
– On Wednesday evening, Tamar’s Justice Team led our prayer meeting and shared about their trip to Taiwan. There is a link to their beautiful newsletter describing their experience on the left column.
– On Thursday, the organization that I lead called The Institute for the Study of Asian American Christianity (ISAAC) held a workshop called “The Art of Preaching in Asian American Settings.” More than 50 people attended (mostly pastors). In the near future ISAAC will offer lay leader equipping classes for Canaan (and other Asian American churches) in the South Bay.
– The session invited Elder Chris Chen to be the Pastor for Taiwanese Ministry. Elder Chen has just finished up his M.Div. degree at Logos Evangelical Seminary. He volunteered for a few of our ISAAC Southern California activities and may have taken a course with me when I taught an adjunct course at Logos a few years ago. I look forward to working closely with Elder Chen and am very excited about our pastoral staff.
See you on Sunday!
Interim English Pastor