Around Town: Stop SOGI 123, stop Kinder Morgan, Healing Rooms . . .

Two demonstrations, one on the west side of Vancouver, the other on Burnaby Mountain. Each one has strong support in sizeable portions of the church, and the support of activists who are keen to work with like-minded people from other religions and the community at large.

On Monday (April 23) opponents of the SOGI 123 project gathered across from the BC Teachers’ Federation office near the south end of the Cambie Street Bridge. On Saturday (April 28), a number of church leaders will gather to protest the Kinder Morgan pipeline project.

Stop SOGI 123

Culture Guard, which organized the SOGI 123 Sit Out (and another one in Victoria) urged parents to bring their children to the rally, saying it is “time to stop the SOGI political agenda in our schools.”

Its promotional material said:

Have you been concerned about the onslaught of SOGI (Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity) material and events happening in local and public schools? . . . show your displeasure at the indoctrination of students – at all grade levels – with attitudes toward sexual permissiveness and gender confusion. . . .

The SOGI agenda affects everyone. It is about deconstructing our culture. It is in Ontario and much of the USA and Australia already; it is coming to Alberta. If we don’t work together to stop this insidious indoctrination, soon no student or parent will be safe from coercion or free to express their own ideas about morality.

A couple of hundred protesters took part in the anti-SOGI rally. Organizers were happy with the turnout. A Facebook post said:

The Culture Guard Rally had spokespeople, young and old, Muslim, Romanian, Chinese. . . . Our crowd, 300 ++ strong, a beautiful mosaic of what true diversity is.

Though it was not a Christian event, several of the speakers made reference to Christian faith. A one-and-a-half hour video on the Culture Guard site covers much of the action.

Across the street more than 100 people rallied in support of the introduction of SOGI 123 into the education system.

The BC SOGI Educator site describes ‘SOGI’ in this way:

Unlike the acronym LGBTQ+, SOGI is a subject or topic and not a list of specific identities. It is an inclusive term that is relevant to all individuals regardless of where they identify on the sexual orientation or gender identity spectrums, as every person has a sexual orientation and every person has a gender identity. It includes identities like lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, two-spirit, heterosexual, cisgender and more.

The primary focus of SOGI 1 2 3 is on terms and identities for people whose sexual orientation and/or gender identity is in the minority, because these people have historically been marginalized and often misunderstood.

Opposition to SOGI 123 has been building steadily for several months, and I expect we’ll hear more about it before long. In the meantime, I wouldn’t count on most of the media to report fairly on that opposition.

Stop Kinder Morgan

Another group of Christians will gather on Burnaby Mountain this weekend, to protest the Kinder Morgan pipeline project.

People of Faith & Friends Against Kinder Morgan has issued this invitation:

On April 28, members of the Faith community will return to Burnaby Mountain to take action against Kinder Morgan. Whether you are spiritual, a person a faith or simply want to support those standing against Kinder Morgan, come to Burnaby Mountain . . .

Last week, 20 members of mostly Christian churches in a small action group risked arrest taking bold action against Kinder Morgan as part of their commitment to Indigenous land justice at the invitation of Coast Salish leaders [read letter below].

This Saturday, over 100 members of many Faith communities are answering the call from the spiritual leaders Watch House and Coast Salish members to take a stand for Indigenous rights and are asking peoples of all faiths and all spiritualities to support them on Burnaby Mountain.

Please arrive at 8 am ready for a march. We will have the opportunity to bring tangible signs of our prayers from our own traditions – like rosaries, prayer cards, tobacco ties – to the KM facility.

We will hear prayers from various faith traditions and some people will take bold action.

This is the letter to faith leaders:

To the dear Religious Leaders and all people of faith and spirit,

The moment to stop the dangerous Kinder Morgan pipeline and tanker project is upon us. For seven years now Kinder Morgan has been threatening Coast Salish lands, waters, culture and spirit by poisoning our territory with oil and wrecking the climate that sustains us all, with its dangerous Trans Mountain pipeline. And for seven years, Tsleil-Waututh members have been protecting our territory from proposed oil flowing through our lands, and tankers intruding our Inlet.

Now, we are asking you to stand with us in our defence of the lands and waters. Please join us on Burnaby Mountain on April 28 to take bold action against the Kinder Morgan pipeline.

Coast Salish members, spiritual leaders and youth will be on the land practicing our culture and spirit as we have for time immemorial. We are calling on you to stand with us as we assert our traditions and practices on our territory, for the sake of reconciliation and decolonization. It is time for you to join our Coast Salish people and do whatever it takes to stop Kinder Morgan.

O’siem and Hay cha qa,
Will George
Tsleil-Waututh Member Project Leader for Kwekwecnewtxw-Protect the Inlet

Earthkeepers, Streams of Justice and Salal and Cedar will be actively involved, along with pastors from several denominations.

These comments by retired Regent College professor Loren Wilkinson (Kinder Morgan protests raise serious questions for Christians, which includes a recounting of his arrest at Clayoguot Sound) and Earthkeepers founder Jason Wood (Burnaby Mountain: Civil disobedience based on respect for Indigenous rights) provide some helpful background.

The Christian community will not be of one mind regarding SOGI 123 or Kinder Morgan. This is a good time to pray for our political leaders and for fellow believers who feel compelled to take a stand.

Healing Rooms gathering

BC Healing Rooms will hold its Open Door Conference this weekend (April 27 – 29) at Glad Tidings Church in Vancouver. There are now Healing Rooms in 17 towns throughout BC; they are part of a burgeoning movement which began in Spokane, Washington in 1999 and now has 2,936 Healing Rooms in 69 nations.

What are Healing Rooms?:

The International Association of Healing Rooms is an association of Healing Rooms Ministries in cities and nations for the purpose of uniting, equipping, empowering the body of Christ to establish healing throughout the world. Our commission is based on Mark 16:17-18: “And these signs shall follow those that believe . . . they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.”

The vision is to see Healing Rooms set in around the world. Our goal is to establish uniformity and accountability in each work by offering, through association, the tools to properly equip each Healing Rooms.

Our focus must be on the presence and power of the Holy Spirit to work through us to heal the sick.

The conference speakers will be Steve and Christina Stewart, who began Healing Rooms in Canada; Steve planted several churches and schools and is also founder and director of Impact Nations. Author Angela Zieske from Quesnel will also speak.

Here are the Healing Rooms in or around Vancouver:

* The Way Healing Rooms, Strathcona Church, Vancouver
* King’s Touch Healing Rooms, Silver Harbour Centre, North Vancouver
* The King’s Way Healing Rooms, Metrotown Mall, Burnaby
* River of Life Healing Rooms, Olivet Baptist Church, New Westminster
* Tri-City Healing Rooms, Westwood Community Church, Coquitlam
* White Rock / South Surrey Healing Rooms

Go here for the full BC list.

April 26, 2018

Welcome the Stranger: Refugees Becoming Neighbours – April 26, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Spirit(us): An Evening with Tenor Charles Daniels – April 26, 2018 at 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

April 27, 2018

BC Healing Rooms Conference – April 27, 2018 - April 29, 2018 at All Day
Coalesce: Grad Art Exhibition at TWU – April 27, 2018 - April 29, 2018 at All Day
Discovered – April 27, 2018 - April 28, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Harvest Glory Night with Che Ahn – April 27, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 9:30 pm
God’s Created Dinosaurs and In Search of Leviathan with JD Mitchell – April 27, 2018 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
Soprano Sarah McGrath and Organist Denis Bédard – April 27, 2018 at 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

April 28, 2018

Kingdom Rise Conference – April 28, 2018 at 12:00 am
People of Faith & Friends Against Kinder Morgan – April 28, 2018 at 8:00 am - 4:00 pm
BC Christian Academy: Branching Out & Bearing Fruit – April 28, 2018 at 9:00 am - 10:00 am
Lighthouse Harbour Ministries Spring Luncheon – April 28, 2018 at 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
The Fallen Tent: the Story of Paul & Silas in Philippi – April 28, 2018 at 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Most Popular Origin Beliefs, and Divine Proportions in God’s Creation with JD Mitchell – April 28, 2018 at 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Divine Proportions in God’s Creation – The Hand of God with JD Mitchell – April 28, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Worship Invasion – April 28, 2018 at 7:30 pm - 10:30 pm

April 29, 2018

Jazz Vespers: Linda Szentes & Jazzlinks – April 29, 2018 at 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Jazz Vespers: Linda Szentes & Jazzlinks – April 29, 2018 at 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Jazz Vespers: Linda Szentes & Jazzlinks – April 29, 2018 at 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Evening Service with Rev. Hyeon Soo Lim – April 29, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 8:15 pm
Journey 101 (Sunday evenings) – April 29, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

May 1, 2018

First Reformed – May 1, 2018 - May 7, 2018 at All Day

May 2, 2018

Light in the Workplace: Abbotsford's 29th Annual City Prayer Breakfast – May 2, 2018 at 7:00 am - 9:30 am

May 3, 2018

Grow Your Own Medicine Seminar (Bye, Bye Malaria Society) – May 3, 2018 at 10:00 am - 2:30 pm
DivorceCare (Thursday evenings) – May 3, 2018 at 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
DivorceCare for Kids (Thursday evenings) – May 3, 2018 at 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm

May 4, 2018

Abide Women's Conference: Even Better than Eden, featuring Nancy Guthrie – May 4, 2018 - May 5, 2018 at 7:00 am - 12:00 pm
Leadercast: Lead Yourself – May 4, 2018 at 8:00 am - 2:30 pm
Life on the Margins: a weekend workshop – May 4, 2018 - May 5, 2018 at 6:30 pm - 4:00 pm
Viper Central – May 4, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 11:00 pm

May 5, 2018

Find Hope, Live Life: Journey Canada Annual Fundraiser – May 5, 2018 at 12:00 am
Arise Girl Conference – May 5, 2018 at 9:00 am - 9:00 pm
Faith, Mental Health & Caring for One Another – May 5, 2018 at 9:00 am - 3:00 pm
Gloria Dei Chorale: A Glorious Thing – May 5, 2018 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

May 6, 2018

Jazz Vespers: Mighty Fraser Big Band – May 6, 2018 at 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Double Portion in Concert – May 6, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Reconciliation in the Justice System: Restorative Justice and Law – May 6, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

May 8, 2018

Dr. David Wilkinson: Hawking, Dawkins & Artificial Intelligence – Communicating Jesus in a Scientific World – May 8, 2018 at 9:30 am - 3:00 pm

May 9, 2018

2018 Pastors & Leaders Conference: Ambassadors – Christ in the Public Square – May 9, 2018 - May 11, 2018 at All Day
Mission Possible Tour – May 9, 2018 at 11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Nikki Toyama-Szeto: Skipping Stones in Glass Homes – Navigating the Generational Gifts of Immigrant Churches – May 9, 2018 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm
SOLD! Housing Forum – May 9, 2018 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm
Jazz Evensong: Dylan Cramer & Ron Johnston – May 9, 2018 at 8:00 pm - 9:30 pm

May 10, 2018

The Presence of Absence by Erin Ware – May 10, 2018 at All Day
March for Life – May 10, 2018 at 1:45 pm - 3:15 pm
Dr. Roberts Liardon – May 10, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Almost, Maine by John Cariani – May 10, 2018 - May 12, 2018 at 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

May 11, 2018

FamilyLife BC Marriage and Family Conference – May 11, 2018 - May 12, 2018 at All Day
From Sea to Sea . . . to Sky! Science & Christianity in Canada – May 11, 2018 - May 14, 2018 at All Day
Hearing God in the Midst of a Busy Life – May 11, 2018 at 9:30 am - 2:15 pm
The Wellspring Gala – May 11, 2018 at 6:15 pm - 9:00 pm
Welcome the Stranger: Refugees Becoming Neighbours – May 11, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

May 12, 2018

Zambia Fundraiser – May 12, 2018 at 9:00 am - 1:00 pm
Fares Fair: Affordable Transit for All – May 12, 2018 at 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Bob Ekblad: 'Teaser Night' for Certificate in Transformational Ministry at the Margins – May 12, 2018 at 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Gospel Music Festival with Blackwood Brothers – May 12, 2018 at 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
Fauré's Requiem and Lauridsen's Lux Aeterna – May 12, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Sky Gala: Katharine Hayhoe, Janet Danielson & the Isotone Ensemble – May 12, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 10:45 pm
Gloria Dei Chorale: A Glorious Thing – May 12, 2018 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
Kantatefeier: A Cantata Celebration – May 12, 2018 at 7:30 pm - 9:45 pm

May 13, 2018

Your Last Walk in the Mosque – May 13, 2018 at 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm
Jazz Vespers: Darlene Ketchum & Bill Sample – May 13, 2018 at 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

May 14, 2018

Taste & See: An Edible Science & Faith Odyssey – May 14, 2018 at 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
FaithTech at #BCTech – May 14, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

May 16, 2018

Dr. Gordon T. Smith: Catechesis for a Secular Age – The Wisdom of 1 Peter – May 16, 2018 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm
Joshua Coutts: Denominating God in Earliest Christianity – May 16, 2018 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm
Jazz Evensong: The Milk Crate Bandits – May 16, 2018 at 8:00 pm - 9:30 pm

May 17, 2018

Thy Kingdom Come – May 17, 2018 - May 20, 2018 at All Day
Dr. Paul Heintzman: Toward a Holistic Understanding of Leisure – Christian Perspectives – May 17, 2018 at 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

May 18, 2018

The Sojourners – May 18, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm

May 19, 2018

A Mexican Pop-Up Dinner: Taste of the Sea and Spanish Stories – May 19, 2018 at 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
The Handel Society Presents . . . – May 19, 2018 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

May 20, 2018

Self Defence Seminar for Women – May 20, 2018 at 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

May 22, 2018

Spiritual Perspectives on Death & Dying – May 22, 2018 at All Day

May 23, 2018

Lines of Thought: Drawing Explorations & Painting Studies - Opening Reception – May 23, 2018 at 4:30 pm - 7:30 pm
Cameron Johnston: Stress Management Seminar – May 23, 2018 - May 24, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Dr. Susan Phillips: Narrative and Pilgrimage – Forming Our Stories in the Company of Others – May 23, 2018 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm
Jazz Evensong: The Angela Verbrugge Quartet – May 23, 2018 at 8:00 pm - 9:30 pm

May 24, 2018

Pope Francis: A Man of His Word – May 24, 2018 at All Day
Tax Clinic – May 24, 2018 at 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Fr. Thomas Rosica, CSB: Preaching and Communicating in a Franciscan Era – What is the Church Learning from an Argentine, Jesuit Pope? – May 24, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

May 25, 2018

Cultivating Life – May 25, 2018 - May 27, 2018 at All Day
HISTORYMAKER WEEKEND 2018 – May 25, 2018 - May 27, 2018 at All Day
River School: Journeys in Compassion, with Steve Stewart – May 25, 2018 - May 27, 2018 at All Day
Walk in the Spirit of Reconciliation – May 25, 2018 - May 27, 2018 at All Day
Invisible Injustice Forum – May 25, 2018 at 9:30 am - 12:00 pm
#ChurchToo Conference: Responding to Professional Sexual Misconduct – May 25, 2018 - May 26, 2018 at 6:30 pm - 4:45 pm
Together for Adoption Conference – May 25, 2018 - May 26, 2018 at 7:00 pm - 4:00 pm

May 26, 2018

Global Outreach Day – May 26, 2018 at All Day
Labyrinth Prayer: A Pilgrim Journey Close to Home – May 26, 2018 at 8:30 am - 3:30 pm
Refugee Support: Basic Training – May 26, 2018 at 8:45 am - 3:00 pm
Understanding Islam & Loving Muslims – May 26, 2018 at 8:45 am - 12:00 pm
An Act of Re-membering Workshop – May 26, 2018 at 9:00 am - 12:00 pm
Learning By Design: Effective Strategies for Teaching Adults – May 26, 2018 at 9:00 am - 4:00 pm
Books 'n Bistro Boutique – May 26, 2018 at 10:00 am - 3:00 pm
Living Single Again (Saturday mornings) – May 26, 2018 at 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
All That is SHE: Benefit for the Joy Smith Foundation – May 26, 2018 at 11:00 am - 2:00 pm
Praise and Worship Concert – May 26, 2018 - May 27, 2018 at 6:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Worship Invades White Rock – May 26, 2018 at 7:30 pm - 10:30 pm

May 27, 2018

Jazz Vespers: Strong Women of Song – May 27, 2018 at 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

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