It’s amazing what happens in response to a warm invitation…
Vanier/Overbrook, a bilingual community on the east side of Ottawa, is home to a number of French-speaking emigrants from Haiti and Lebanon. A local church, Église Liberté, Oasis des nations, stepped out to meet them and found many people open to engage in conversation.
The church held a Finding the Hope campaign in the spring, placing the Finding the Hope booklet in 6,200 homes of the community. Included in the package was a card presenting the vision of the church, its leadership and contact information.
With enthusiasm, the church’s pastor, Rev. Harold Sowerby, shared, “People are calling our church office and my cell. We are excited. One lady will be picked up for church Sunday morning.”
The Finding the Hope campaign encourages local congregations to connect with non-churched people in the community through a variety of ways. Pastor Sowerby and his congregation saw the potential and invited the neighbourhood to a July 1st barbecue. More than four times the number of people who normally attend the Sunday morning service came to the event!
In addition to free food, they had games and prizes for children. They carried the Finding the Hope theme with a banner and resource table well stocked with bilingual Finding the Hope booklets and other free materials and gifts. Pastor Sowerby says, “Our time was spent sitting, talking one on one with our guests. Many families came. Everyone was greeted, visited and given materials. The Finding the Hope booklet in the language of their choice was a major tool.” He concludes by saying, “It is good to know that the population around us has the booklet and knows we’re here. We are going to build on this. We are praying that fruit will come and that disciples will be the result.”
What a great joy for EHC to partner with churches like Église Liberté. Join with them in prayer for many fruitful connections in the community. Let’s trust God to awaken in many more churches such vision and desire to see the lost reached with the Gospel of Christ.