Twenty-five years ago this summer, I travelled from Quito, Ecuador, for a meeting with the Board of Directors of Family Bible Hour. A dozen men from around Ontario came together in St. Catharines to interview me regarding my potential involvement with the ministry. I won’t take time to tell you about it here, but the fact that I’m writing this letter suggests that I became about as “involved” as possible. This month finds me on the other side of that process, as the board begins interviewing candidates to lead the ministry into the future.
After that meeting in 1992, I distinctly remember calling Debbie, who had remained in Ecuador when I made that trip, to tell her, “It looks like we’re coming back to Canada.” At the time, leaving the ministries we were involved in there, abandoning our colleagues and friends, and returning to a country where we hadn’t lived for 10 years did not hold much appeal. However, one thing led to another and God made it clear that, in spite of our natural inclinations, He had a plan for us to return to Canada and for me to work with FBH.
It took a year to wind things down in Ecuador, so it was 24 years ago this month, August 1993, that I showed up at the Family Bible Hour office on King Street in St. Catharines for the first time and was shown my office and given some tasks to do—one of the first of which was preparing materials for the upcoming conference in October that year. Back then, presentations were made using slides accompanied by a cassette audio track. Now, as I find myself occupied with that very same task, it’s all PowerPoint and video.
In spite of all the technological change over the last two and a half decades, our annual conference still remains the centerpiece of the year. I’m particularly encouraging people to get to this one to hear Nathan Díaz talk about the growth of the ministry throughout Latin America. I’ve asked him to tell us about a unique Christian radio station in Baja California which is largely funded by the baseball games that occur in a field near the church operating it. It’s not an “official” station, but the government knows about it and allows it to continue because of its service to the community. Nathan will also tell us about his colleagues and some of the lives they’ve touched through programs available on radio and the internet.
As I’ve been writing this letter, the Arab World Media online security team in England has been setting up a secure connection for Skype calls to workers in Cairo who will be giving me fresh accounts of what the Lord is doing there. I’ve also been in touch with our colleagues in Russia and Ukraine about video up-dates from those countries. All in all, things are coming together for another great conference on the afternoon of Saturday, October 28, at Oakridge Bible Chapel in Oakville. More information will follow.
Read the rest of the newsletter in the attached PDF.