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A FOCUS ON THE FAMILY CANADA NEWSLETTER
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December 2012
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Have you seen grace?

 
Have any special plans for Christmas? Travelling to see family? Have you seen grace? 
 
“When? Tell me, when do I have time? I’m in the midst of Christmas chaos. Monday, I have to meet with the Christmas concert committee. Tuesday, I need to find good, meaningful readings for the Advent season and then try to find people interested in being involved those four Sundays. Wednesday, I need to go to a small group leader’s home for their year-end wrap-up party. Last Thursday, I was at the hospital visiting the sick and elderly, seeing as this is such a lonely time of year for them. That evening, my wife and I met the elders and their wives at a restaurant for our annual Christmas party. Friday evening, I attended my son’s school Christmas concert and then dropped him off at his friend’s for a sleepover. Saturday morning, I organized the youth at the church as they worked on the backdrop for the Christmas concert. Sunday – please tell me it’s not Sunday. Will they know that I pulled out an old sermon again?”
 
Did you see grace?
 
“What, are you kidding me? Why are you pestering me with this? Want to hear how many times I was late for meeting the Christmas concert committee? Want to know how mad my wife is because I forgot to tell her that we were meeting at the restaurant on Thursday with the elders? Want to see the speeding ticket I got when I realized I forgot to pick my son up from his sleepover? And you are asking me if I saw grace?”
 
Come.
 
“Where are we going?”
 
NEWS
Date Night Challenge
 
Date Night Challenge is back and better than ever with less music and more teaching from marriage experts. Visit Focusonthefamily.ca/datenight to bring this fun-filled celebration of marriage to your church!
MINISTRY HIGHLIGHTS
Pastors’ Gatherings
 
We understand the challenges of balancing ministry and family life. Take a well-deserved break with Randy MacDonald, who will discuss how to care for yourself so you can care for others. During this time of fellowship, we’ll offer complimentary, Biblically based resources to you and your family. If you are interested in hosting one of these events in your area, please contact us at churches@fotf.ca.
FEATURED RESOURCE
Grace
 
We talk about grace as though we understand the term, but do we actually know what it means? Max Lucado asks a deeper question: Have you been changed, shaped and strengthened by grace? 
 
FROM SCRIPTURE
“The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.”

(John 1:14)
WHAT'S ON YOUR MIND
We want to hear from you! What are the most important topics you want us to talk about in regards to ministry life? Send your suggestions to churches@fotf.ca and we will send you a free resource for your library.
TESTIMONY
“We have been receiving your Thriving Family magazine as a gift from my parents and absolutely love it! My understanding is that the Thriving Family magazine is a free subscription for churches. We are jumping into a new season with a strong focus on young families, and this resource would be an incredible benefit for them.”
KERITH CREEK
Ministry retreats
 
Renewal and rest for pastors and their spouses.
 
Upcoming seven-day retreats:
  1. Jan. 22 – 29
  2. Feb. 19 – 26
  3. March 19 – 26
  4. April 16 – 23
  5. May 14 – 21
MINISTRY CONNECTIONS
Speakers and teachers

Focus Canada speakers are here to provide real help for families and marriages.

To learn more about having a Focus Canada speaker come to your church or event, email churches@fotf.ca.
CLERGY CARE NETWORK
For Canadian pastors and their families

Support and encouragement for your personal and ministry life.

For free, confidential counselling, contact us at 1.888.5.CLERGY or info@clergycare.ca.

Our phone lines are open Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. PST.
Clergycare.ca
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EMAIL LETTERS@FOTF.CA
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