Feedback from Ministry Trip to Central Church (Waterloo, ON, Canada) – Feb 8-10, 2013
Steve and I have been going to Waterloo for some time now and have often left feeling heart sore for Fred and Catherine as they have come up against their fair share of obstacles and have been discouraged. This time was different. The atmosphere was full of hope and vision for their future at Central Church. As the events of the weekend unfolded, it became clear that they are in a season of changing gears and being released into impact! I had the opportunity of going with Catherine to a gathering of pastors wives and women in ministry breakfast where I heard Catherine speak and share her powerful testimony of being healed from stage-4 cancer. She has a powerful ministry and is eager to be used by God in this area. I heard later from her that doors are opening more and more after years of waiting on God. On Sunday morning God broke in and His presence was thick as the church heard the word on our purpose in HIS kingdom and then as the church gathered around Fred and Catherine During the ministry time, God’s power was evident as people wept and cried out for more of God as a unified body with single purpose. We left so encouraged for our journey home! We felt full after a weekend ministering as friends with purpose – knowing God is at work.
Last weekend’s trip to Waterloo was a really great time of relationship and ministry with Central Church. A few things that stood out to me:
1.) Our starting point was with established relationships — It was great to come into an environment that we already knew and people who we have built with before. The relationships between our team and Central Church were obvious and genuine, and I feel this gave a “weight” and trust to the things taught, conversed, and ministered. They are truly a “peer” church where it really feels like we are walking alongside each other. The established relationships seem to pick up where they left off, and bring with them experiences and growth since we last partnered.
2.) The weekend was a team effort — It was great to have Steve teaching several times at the main meetings, but it was also great that each of us got to contribute in various ways and in ways we are gifted. From the college-age group on Friday night, to the women’s lunch on Sat, to the Sat all-church gathering, to the worship team training on Sat pm, to the worship & teaching at the Sunday gathering — all of us — Steve, Debs, Dave, Jamie, and Nate — got to contribute in one-on-one and group settings and lead in areas of gifting and passion. It is awesome to work in team and to see that outwork in practical ways with Central Church.
3.) There was evidence of growth and God’s work — Both in the sense that have seen growth and change since our previous times there, as well as in the sense that we saw response and people being built up while we were there. There was a great relational sense of mutual encouragement and co-laboring.
I definitely enjoyed our weekend in Waterloo. Although the drive there was long 11.5hours, due to the snow storm, the atmosphere in the car was expectant, and we were all excited about being with this church again. It was my second trip there, and knowing some of the people and the leaders was quite helpful. Everything we did there as a team felt like we were partnering with the church. From the first night where Nate preached with the young adult group, to the sessions Steve did sat afternoon, to the worship training Saturday night. It really did feel like building with Central Church. Sunday morning was so encouraging, worship felt like it was in a really good place with people very hungry for God. The sermon and ministry was very well received and again felt like we were building n top of what they were doing. I noticed that the meeting place was very full, I would even say at capacity. I really look forward to our continued partnership with Waterloo, and think there may be a really special bond between our two churches into the future.