Around Town: Craig Greenfield, Gordon Fee, Hummingbird, Identity Crisis . . .

Craig Greenfield and his family lived in the Downtown Eastside for several years.

Craig Greenfield is back in Vancouver for a few days, reacquainting himself with the city where he and his family spent several years living in the Downtown Eastside, and meeting old friends and promoting his most recent book.

Greenfield is founder and director of Alongsiders International, a grassroots movement of young Christians reaching the world’s poorest children.

Originally from New Zealand, he has lived and worked with his family for many years in Cambodia and other Asian communities.

He commented on his Facebook page October 25:

We tend to banish those who make us uncomfortable with their brokenness. The poor hold up a mirror to our most uncomfortable truths, and so we push them to the ragged edges of our communities so that we won’t have to face our own failures and addictions. This is what we mean when we say someone is ‘marginalized’ – they have been banished to the margins.

And this is what the city of Vancouver has done to its most vulnerable citizens.

I spent time in the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver today. It’s a place of great struggle and sadness. We lived here in the inner city for seven years, but things today are much worse than ever before. Homelessness, addiction and illness have become deeply entrenched.

Jesus weeps.

I wrote about Greenfield as he held a very informal book launch for Subversive Jesus at a home in the Downtown Eastside in 2016.

Following is a portion of the first chapter of Greenfield’s brand new book, Subversive Mission (can you spot a theme in his writing?):

I’ve lived in slums and inner cities among the poor and marginalized for 20 years. I’ve led humanitarian organizations, a global missions agency and now a grassroots youth movement that is truly making the world a more beautiful place.

I have held the dying and walked alongside the desperate. My whole life is geared towards seeking change that will make the world a better place for everyone.

And frankly, I’m impatient! I want a better world for my poor neighbours – and I want it sooner rather than later. I want to see more vulnerable children being reached and uplifted. I want bread for the hungry, safety for the endangered, and I long for people to know the boundless love of Jesus.

Yet I’ve come to understand that there are lots of ways to seek what is good for the world. Over time, I’ve learned that many of the short-term ways I’ve tried to pursue change – such as handing out money or food – have actually resulted in more deeply entrenched systems and structures, which continue to perpetuate poverty and injustice. At times, some of my ‘great ideas’ have actually made things much, much worse, because I’ve been trying to play god in the lives of the poor.

So, if we’re no longer standing centre stage as outsiders, giving keynotes to 20,000 young leaders, how is God calling us to serve in this new era? Didn’t Jesus call us to go out into all the world to make disciples and build his upside-down kingdom? Didn’t God call us to bring good news to the poor, freedom for those in captivity, and comfort to those who mourn?

Greenfield spoke at five services at Tenth Church last Sunday, and at Valley Crossway Church in Abbotsford this week. But it is not too late to hear from him in person, either tonight or Saturday morning:

* October 27, 7 – 9 pm: laneway house at 1059 East 13th Avenue
* October 29, 9 – 11:45 am: Tenth Church

If you can’t make it out to see Greenfield, and are in the Surrey area, you might want to galvanize yourself (because it also takes place tonight) for what looks to be a very interesting evening.

Joash Thomas will lead an event with themes which overlap with those raised by Greenfield:

Join International Justice Mission and Canadian business leaders to learn how corporations can eliminate forced labour slavery and protect communities where their supply chains operate.

Unbound: The Path to Change is tonight (October 27) at the Village Church Ministry Centre on 56th Avenue.

Remembering Gordon Fee

Gordon Fee, centre, being recognized by fellow scholars at a Regent College event.

A leading scholar who taught at Regent College for 16 years has just died. Regent’s remembrance for Gordon Fee began with these words:

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Professor Emeritus Dr. Gordon D. Fee. Gordon died October 25, 2022, in New York City.

Gordon was a beloved member of Regent’s faculty, serving as Professor of New Testament from 1986 to 2002. Following his retirement and appointment as Professor Emeritus, Gordon served the College as a favourite sessional instructor until 2009. He was a treasured colleague, teacher, friend and pastor to many.

Gordon brought a remarkable store of intellect and pastoral concern to New Testament scholarship and to his teaching. He was often quoted as saying, “The concern of the scholar is primarily with what the text meant; the concern of the layperson is usually with what it means. The believing scholar insists that we must have both.”

His books How to Read the Bible for All its Worth (co-authored with Douglas Stuart), and God’s Empowering Presence: The Holy Spirit in the Letters of Paul continue to be seminal works and best sellers. Gordon also wrote highly-regarded commentaries on 1 and 2 Timothy, 1 Corinthians, 1 and 2 Thessalonians and Revelation.

Gordon is considered one of the finest textual critics of the 20th century and an expert on pneumatology, the study of the Holy Spirit. In 1990 Gordon was selected to succeed the revered F.F. Bruce as the editor of the noted New International Commentaries series, a role he carried out until 2012. . . .

Go here for the full comment. There will be a public memorial service in Vancouver next spring.

Hummingbird festival

Hummingbird Ministries, an Indigenous-led work of the Westminster Presbytery, will be drawing together artists and musicians – and anyone interested in reconciliation – for their Peace Through the Arts Festival:

After three years we will finally resume our annual Peace through the Arts Festival November 4 and 5.

The evening of November 4 is our fundraiser. This is a healing and reconciliation event, working through the arts towards healing broken relationships with Indigenous people and in fact all people.

Saturday November 5 is our regular festival with artistic friends lining up one after the other all day – dancing, singing, telling stories. Ending in a dinner at 6:30.

Come and take part in a healing ceremony through the arts, have fun, make some new friends. It’s also an opportunity to give thanks for the Creator’s gifts of prayer, song and dance.

Among the musicians are Deacon Rennie Nahanee and Marcus Mosely, with Darlene Cooper and Bill Sample. Organizers welcome other artists to contact them and take part.

Identity Crisis

An evening discussion on Identity Crisis: Sexuality, Gender and Why Humans Exist will take place in south Vancouver November 4:

In partnership with Midtown Church, Apologetics Canada will be addressing some critical issues. Join us for an evening of thought-provoking dialogue, and opportunity to work through one of the most controversial topics in our current cultural climate.

The event will be led by Andy Steiger, Founder and President of Apologetics Canada, and Troy Lydiate, a recording artist and speaker who is also with Apologetics Canada.

October 27, 2022

Trauma-Informed Pastoral Care – October 27, 2022 at 9:00 am - 12:00 pm
Run Alpha Q & A – October 27, 2022 at 10:00 am - 11:00 am
Business as Mission lunch with Graham Carter – October 27, 2022 at 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Toast Talks: Updates from First United – October 27, 2022 at 4:30 pm - 5:15 pm
SIMinar: Poetry Speaks Louder Than Words – October 27, 2022 at 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Unbound: The Path to Change – October 27, 2022 at 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm
'Subversive Mission': An Evening with Craig Greenfield and Alongsiders International – October 27, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

October 28, 2022

Apologetics Canada Leadership Summit – October 28, 2022 - October 30, 2022 at All Day
White Rock-South Surrey Leadership Prayer Breakfast – October 28, 2022 at 7:00 am - 9:00 am
St James' Church Open Tour and Bell Ringing – October 28, 2022 at 3:30 pm - 6:00 pm

October 29, 2022

Ivan Boudreau Hosts a Night of Songwriters in the Round – October 29, 2022 at 12:00 am
Just1Morning with Craig Greenfield – October 29, 2022 at 9:00 am - 11:45 am
Fall Bazaar @ St. John's Port Moody – October 29, 2022 at 10:00 am - 2:30 pm
9th Hallelujah Night presented by Blue Ocean Movement – October 29, 2022 at 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm

October 31, 2022

Fall Festival (five locations) – October 31, 2022 at 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

November 1, 2022

David S. Robinson: Does Everything Really Happen for a Reason? – November 1, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Stories from our Living Rooms 2022: New Hope Fundraising Night – November 1, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

November 2, 2022

Pastors Workshop: John Swinton & Daniel Whitehead – Seeking Sanctuary, Finding Shalom – November 2, 2022 at 10:30 am - 12:00 pm
Conversations with Donors – November 2, 2022 at 11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Janaki Larsen: Self-Assembly – Gallery Opening – November 2, 2022 at 4:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Singing Christmas Tree: Tickets available – November 2, 2022 at 5:00 pm
2022 Delta Christian School Annual Open House – November 2, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Mother Teresa: No Greater Love Encore – November 2, 2022 - November 3, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Jazz Evensong @ Brentwood: Matt Franceschini & Friends – November 2, 2022 at 8:00 pm - 9:00 pm

November 3, 2022

Christian Advocacy Society Autumn Banquet Fundraiser – November 3, 2022 at 6:30 pm - 9:00 pm
SAMC Theatre presents The Miracle Worker – November 3, 2022 - November 5, 2022 at 7:30 pm - 10:00 pm

November 4, 2022

TWU Richmond Open House – November 4, 2022 at 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Audible – November 4, 2022 at 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Hummingbird Ministries Peace Through the Arts Festival – November 4, 2022 - November 5, 2022 at 6:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Identity Crisis: Sexuality, Gender & Why Humans Exist – November 4, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Joy Restored: Adult & Teen Challenge BC 2022 Fall Choir Tour – November 4, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
TWU Game Jam for high school students – November 4, 2022 - November 6, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Vancouver Chamber Choir: Cecilia – November 4, 2022 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
Jim Byrnes with Simon Kendall – November 4, 2022 at 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

November 5, 2022

From War to Peace: Heinrich Schütz and His Time – November 5, 2022 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

November 6, 2022

International Day of Prayer 2022: Stand Firm – November 6, 2022 at All Day
Book Reading and Q&A with Mary Jane Joe – November 6, 2022 at 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm

November 9, 2022

Preaching Advent: An Immersive Encounter with the Scriptures – November 9, 2022 - November 10, 2022 at 9:00 am - 4:00 pm
Theology Symposium: When does Translating Change the Meaning of Scripture? – November 9, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Jazz Evensong @ Brentwood: Lorraine Foster for Remembrance Week – November 9, 2022 at 8:00 pm - 9:00 pm

November 10, 2022

'COP of Coffee': Live from COP27 in Egypt – November 10, 2022 at 10:00 am - 11:00 am
New Man Vancouver – November 10, 2022 - November 12, 2022 at 11:00 am - 9:00 pm
SIMinar: Dark Moments in Missions – November 10, 2022 at 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

November 11, 2022

The Cookie Jar House Concert with Mark Glanville Jazz Trio – November 11, 2022 at 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

November 12, 2022

Have Art, Will Show – November 12, 2022 at 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Truth and Reconciliation Education Workshop Part 2 – November 12, 2022 at 10:00 am - 11:30 am
'People & Planet First, Part II': 2022 Fall Campaign with Development and Peace, Caritas Canada – November 12, 2022 at 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
The Gig: New Artist Showcase – November 12, 2022 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
Soweto Gospel Choir – November 12, 2022 at 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

November 13, 2022

Out of the Darkness and Into the Light of the Global Stage: Protestant Churches in China After 1979 – November 13, 2022 at 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

November 14, 2022

Rikk Watts: God's Biographers – Why We Can Trust the Gospels – November 14, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

November 15, 2022

ELO Forum Vancouver 2022 – November 15, 2022 at 1:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Is Canadian Healthcare at Risk? – November 15, 2022 at 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
OM Ships Partner Dinner – November 15, 2022 at 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Book Launch: A Place at the Table, with Jo Swinney – November 15, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

November 16, 2022

Common HR Pitfalls to Avoid – November 16, 2022 at 9:00 am - 10:00 am
Inklings Institute Event: The Symbolic Geography of C.S. Lewis' 'The Great Divorce' – November 16, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
JustWork's Taste of Dignity 2022 – November 16, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
How our Heavenly Citizenship Shapes Our Earthly Citizenship – November 16, 2022 at 7:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Jazz Evensong @ Brentwood: The Hot Mamas – November 16, 2022 at 8:00 pm - 9:00 pm

November 17, 2022

Janaki Larsen: Self-Assembly – November 17, 2022 - November 23, 2022 at All Day
Jesus Christ Superstar – November 17, 2022 - November 20, 2022 at All Day
Can Hospitality Change Canada? – November 17, 2022 at 10:00 am - 11:00 am
None of the Above: Nonreligious Identity in the US and Canada – November 17, 2022 at 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm

November 18, 2022

The Chosen Season 3: Episode 1 & 2 (several theatres) – November 18, 2022 - November 22, 2022 at All Day
All Saints Bazaar – November 18, 2022 - November 19, 2022 at 10:00 am - 3:00 pm
The Paperboys (trio) – November 18, 2022 at 8:00 pm - 9:00 pm

November 19, 2022

Refugee Support and Volunteer Training – November 19, 2022 at 8:45 am - 3:00 pm
22nd Annual Fundraising Breakfast of St. Mark's / Corpus Christi College – November 19, 2022 at 9:00 am - 11:00 am
Christmas Craft Fair – November 19, 2022 at 9:00 am - 3:00 pm
All Saints Bazaar – November 19, 2022 at 10:00 am - 3:00 pm
Quality Fair Bazaar – November 19, 2022 at 10:00 am - 3:00 pm
St George's Annual Christmas Market – November 19, 2022 at 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
The Unique Role of the Church in Helping People Survive and Recover from Forced Displacement – November 19, 2022 at 10:00 am - 12:30 pm
Kairos Blanket Exercise – November 19, 2022 at 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

November 20, 2022

Advent Candle Workshop – November 20, 2022 at 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Taizé Service – November 20, 2022 at 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

November 21, 2022

Celebrating Jim Houston's 100th Birthday – November 21, 2022 at All Day

November 22, 2022

Let the Little Children Come to Me: Our Ecological Future & Biblical Past – November 22, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

November 23, 2022

Pension Plans and Caring for Staff in their Retirement – November 23, 2022 at 11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Out of Thin Air: A Himalayan Life Event – November 23, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Science, Faith & the James Webb Space Telescope – November 23, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Jazz Evensong @ Brentwood: Patricia Faith & Bob York – November 23, 2022 at 8:00 pm - 9:00 pm

November 24, 2022

Bethany Haynes-Kramm: Play Ground – November 24, 2022 - November 27, 2022 at All Day
Working Towards Freedom: Anti Human Trafficking – November 24, 2022 at 8:00 am - 9:30 am
SIMinar: Accounting and Missions: Because Money Moves Ministry – November 24, 2022 at 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Zhongping Chen: Religion, Racism, and Rivalry in North American Chinatowns, 1896-1916 – November 24, 2022 at 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

November 25, 2022

National Prayer & Worship Gathering – November 25, 2022 at 2:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Presidential Installation 2022: Dr. Gerry Turcotte – November 25, 2022 at 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm
604 Chapel – November 25, 2022 at 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Tom Jackson: Stories Songs & Santa Causes – November 25, 2022 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
TWU Band and Orchestra Concert – November 25, 2022 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
A Family Curse – November 25, 2022 at 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

November 26, 2022

Advent in the Neighbourhood: A Webinar – November 26, 2022 at 8:00 am - 9:30 am
Christmas Bazaar in Steveston – November 26, 2022 at 9:30 am - 2:00 pm
The Kingdom of God in Working Clothes – November 26, 2022 at 9:30 am - 12:00 pm
Christmas Craft Fair & Bake Sale – November 26, 2022 at 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Mistletoe Bazaar – November 26, 2022 at 10:00 am - 2:00 pm
A German Requiem / Psalm 42, Like as the Hart – November 26, 2022 at 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Family Christmas Funtastic – November 26, 2022 at 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm
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