Psalm 34:7-8 "The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him, and He delivers them. Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in Him" (read all of Psalm 34 HERE).
IT'S NATIONAL VOLUNTEER WEEK (April 24-30) and we want to extend a huge THANK YOU to everyone in our church family who gives of their time and talents to serve our congregation and the surrounding communities in so many ways throughout the year! Be encouraged by the words of Colossians 3:17 and Galatians 6:9-10 "And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him." "Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers."
INFLUENCE & LEGACY Ladies Spring Tea Monday, May 9 @ 6:30PM Bring your daughters, mom, sisters, or friends to a special tea and be inspired as our youth and slightly more senior ladies share how others have influenced them or how they have had an influence on others. It would be helpful if you sign up to let us know you plan to attend. Contact Dianna if you have a tiered tray and/or teapot we could borrow. Donations will be graciously accepted to offset the cost of the event.
UPDATE ON UKRAINE from Pastor Yuri from Kramatorsk Evangelical Free Church: Hello, I am a pastor of a small church in Ukraine. The war has been very hard on people in our city and the congregation. We are located in the Donetsk region, which Russia is currently trying to take over. On a typical Sunday, we used to have 30 people attending our small church. Many people fled when the war started, knowing Russia would target our area. I felt the Lord calling me to stay and serve the people. My wife and I made the difficult decision to send her and our children out of Ukraine while I remained in the area. Businesses are closed, people are without jobs, and the grocery stores are empty. With help from the EFCC Benevolence Fund, we could buy groceries such as oil and bread for people who could no longer provide for themselves. Our church began to overflow, and we started to have baptisms weekly. A couple of weeks ago, our service grew from 30 to 178 people. Praise God! I appreciate your support. Our food outreach has been incredible in our city. Thanks to the EFCC Benevolence Fund. The EFCC Benevolence Fund is being used to simply put groceries on someone’s table who can’t provide for themselves anymore, gas provided so that a family can flee the invading army, as well as bedding, mattresses, diapers, medicine, and train tickets purchased to help refugees travel toward Western Europe.
WORK DAYS- Blue Bronna Wilderness Camp May 20-22 and May 27-29 Help the camp get ready for a summer of ministry! Register HERE.
SABBATICAL An aspect of pastoral care and retooling that OEFC provides their pastoral staff is the possibility of a sabbatical every 7 years. This year, Pastor Michael has made a request and the Elders Board has granted him a three-month sabbatical beginning May 5. Michael has been busy delegating his responsibilities and is looking forward to some time away to process life events and be refreshed and renewed for another season of ministry. He has presented a plan to the Board for how he will spend his time and will report back to them when he returns in mid-August. As with any pastoral staff taking a sabbatical, we encourage them to disengage from church life and ministry as much as possible. III From Pastor Rob, on behalf of the Elders Board and Pastor Michael
COFFEE BAR PRICE CHANGES OEFC has always been proud to offer the cheapest specialty coffee in town. The good news: that will not change anytime soon. The bad news: the price needs to change to keep up with increases in the cost of coffee and supplies. Effective April 24, our specialty beverages will be $3 (hot) and $4 (cold). Our Baker’s Dozen punch cards (13 beverages) will now be $36. Thank you for understanding. And as always, regular and decaf coffee and tea is complimentary!
THIS WEEK @ OEFC
Friday, April 29 THE ONLY HOPE OEFC Missions Week Valentinos Dessert Café! (6-9PM come and go / drop-in format) Bring your sweetheart, your family or neighbours, or your small group. The Main Auditorium will be transformed into a café / restaurant setting and you and your guests will be seated together. Valentinos is hosted and served by OEFC Youth, with proceeds to Hand in Hands ministry. Decadent desserts and specialty beverages will be available for purchase (cash only). Thanks to all who have signed up to donate items; the church will be open Thursday afternoon/evening and Friday morning and items can be left in the kitchen.
Saturday, April 30 THE ONLY HOPE OEFC Missions Week Free Breakfast @ 9AM (sign-up HERE if possible, but you can just show up as well!) Colin and Shelby will share about their plans for ministry in Zambia! A free-will offering will be taken for Gilmore family's outgoing expenses (matched by OEFC Missions Committee up to $2,000). College & Career - Bowling @ Millenium Lanes in Okotoks (Saturday, 6-7:30PM) Contact Brooklyn for more info 403-336-8609.
Sunday, May 1 THE ONLY HOPE - OEFC MISSIONS WEEK wraps up Click HERE to see videos from our missionaries (password: Global) Colin & Shelby will share briefly in the 9:15 and 11AM services; Pastor Rob will be preaching on Daniel 3 "God in the Fire" 9:15AM Worship Service (Main Auditorium - contemporary / Fireside Room - acoustic) - Nursery, Preschool, and Connect Sunday School (Gr 1-6) Morning Worship Livestream available HERE 11AM Worship Service (Main Auditorium only)
Tuesday, May 3 9:30 to 11:30AM Ladies Bible Studies 6:30PM DivorceCare - contact Marion to register
Wednesday, May 4 10AM Senior's Bible Study at OEFC - studying the book of Philippians. Everyone welcome! 1-3PM GriefShare Contact Marion to register.
Thursday, May 5 9:30AM to NOON Coffee & Crafting - Come & Go drop-in format 7-9PM Celebrate Recovery For more information, email HERE 7PM Grade 12 Girl's Bible Study
Friday, May 6 (NO YOUTH) - get lots of sleep before highway cleanup on Saturday!
Saturday, May 7 Highway Clean-Up (fundraiser for OEFC Youth) Sign up HERE We will meet at the church at 9AM. Cleaning 13km on Highway 2A between Okotoks and Calgary. The more people we get the faster it goes, so we encourage you to bring along your friends! Barbecue to follow! All funds will go toward youth ministries at OEFC. Must be 9 years old; 9-12 year olds must be supervised by a parent Questions? Contact Chris Young.
COMING UP Sunday, May 8 (Mother's Day) Parent/Child Dedication (contact Pastor Steve) Distribution of Calgary Pregnancy Care Centre baby-bottle fundraiser (or give online). Monday, May 9 (6:30PM) see info (above) for Influence & Legacy Ladies Spring Tea Tuesday, May 10 MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) (9:30-11AM) Breakfast for the moms and childcare for the kids is provided at no cost!
MISSIONARY OF THE WEEK Trent and Christine, serving with TEAM Pray for: Trent and Christine’s neighbors in their building, as they live life and play at the playground together Guests they meet who stay at their rental; Team with whom they work alongside daily The barista community all over the area; Trent recently trained 37 national judges (this training advances the careers of many!) Fellow workers in the expat community who are also far from home and missing those whom they love. Many Russians and Ukrainians, especially many orphans, who are seeking safety in their city A new place to live
OEFC LIBRARY NEWS Moms in Prayer: Standing in the Gap for Your Children Author Fern Nichols reveals how she teaches women to pray in a way that changes their lives and the lives of those they love. She teaches the principles and practices that will not only revolutionize the way people think about prayer, but the way they pray, leading them into a deeper intimacy with Jesus, who is always interceding on our behalf.
COMMUNITY NEWS SUMMER CAMP @ Southern Alberta Bible Camp: Registration is open for all ages! Contact the camp 403-792-3644 or [email protected] for more information.
SENIORS SING AND DINE at SABC on Wednesday, May 11 (11:30AM to 3PM). Enjoy a great meal served by chef Dave and worship in song with the hymns of old. No bussing this year; please plan to carpool if possible. Even young seniors are welcome! There is no charge, but an offering will be collected in support of the ministry at Southern Alberta Bible Camp. RSVP 403-792-3644
LINKS & INFO
LiveStream worship service Sundays @ 9:15AM
One-time or scheduled giving to OEFC: Cash or cheques may be dropped off at the church (NEW donation boxes) Sunday morning or T-F 8:30AM-4PM
Point of Sale terminal: Interac payments are now accepted at the coffee bar (debit, Visa and Mastercard) for coffee bar purchases, donations, event registrations, etc! When making payments for anything OTHER than coffee bar purchases, please be sure to fill out an envelope at the terminal and deposit it - along with one of the provided receipts - into the donation box in the Main Auditorium or Fireside Room.
Prayer Chain requests can be submitted by phone 403-938-3311. Staff are available at [email protected] (if you need assistance, have a confidential prayer request or just want to talk with someone). The Prayer Room (to the right of the Main Auditorium platform) is available to use whenever the church is open.