A look at our working timeline . . . (Part 1 of 2)

God has given me this day to use it as I will. I can waste it – or use it for good, but what I do today is important, because I am exchanging a day of my life for it! – Heartsill Wilson

The next few days are going to bring some fantastic news to this blog.  We're going to be talking about potential locations that we may end up in if we aren't able to purchase back the Line 7 facility.  We're going to talk about some of the values that are important for us as we make this transition into Connexus.  We're going to be hearing from people who's lives are being impacted by this ministry. Lot's a great news coming your way!  (Now I'm starting to write like a slick radio sales guy!)

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Enough of the announcements . . . let's jump into the meat of today's post!

We want to talk about the timelines that we are working on for the transition that our church is about to go through.  We've broken this up into two blog posts to make them a little bit easier to understand and so you can ask questions in the comment section specific to that timeline.   WARNING:  There is a lot of detail ahead – don't get lost in it all.  Remember that we're in this transition because we want to continue to build the kind of church that we can invite our friends to.  Sure we're talking about a lot of dates and times here but at the end of it all this transition is about becoming more of the church that we believe God is calling us to.  Now on with the laundry list!

Option A – Moving out of Line 7
Tuesday October 2nd            
Meeting with Presbytery Leadership. Our next conversation with the core leadership from our local governing body with the Presbyterian Church of Canada (PCC for short).

Tuesday October 9th
Full Presbytery Meeting. This is the date that the full local governing body meets.  They will be discussing our desire to purchase the Line 7 facility upon our exit from PCC on October 31st.

Saturday October 20th
Barrie Information Meeting | 10 am | Barrie Galaxy CineplexIf you live closer to Barrie than Orillia than join us for a public information meeting about our next steps as a community.  We're going to be talking about our future and about how you can get involved through volunteering and giving.  A don't miss event!

Saturday October 27th

Orillia Information Meeting | 10 am | Orillia Galaxy Cineplex.  This meeting will present the same information as the week before.  Book these dates now as these will be important "next steps" for our community.

Sunday October 28th

Final Service as Trinity Community Church.  Our Service Programming Team has already begun pulling together some special elements for this Sunday.  This promises to be a fantastic Sunday.

November 1st – 15th

Volunteer "Thank You" Parties.  We want to start off our next phase in our history with a party to thank those people who have stepped up to make it all happen.  We'll be hosting a series of fun events over these two weeks as a chance to say "thank you" for all that you've done and are doing to make this ministry a reality!

Sunday November 4th

Open House Sunday.  We won't be hosting public services this Sunday but we'll be encouraging our Community Groups to meet instead.  Some of the groups will be "open" that Sunday for you to drop in on.  This will be a chance for people who aren't in a Community Group to get a taste of what a Community Group experience is like!

Sunday November 11th

Tech Training Sunday.  Our tech teams are going to be having a special Sunday morning training experience where they'll be able to learn a little more in preparation for our launches!

Saturday & Sunday November 17th & 18th
Barrie Soft Launch Weekend. This is going to be a full weekend – it's our opportunity to prepare for the grand opening which will just be a few weeks away!  On Saturday morning our environment set up, audio/video, music, host, children's and youth teams will get a chance to run through transforming our rented facility into a great environment for our friends.  On Saturday evening we'll be asking our Community Groups to host a series of special prayer events – where we can pray for the future of our church.  On Sunday morning we are going to host  "dress rehearsal" services . . . don't invite your friends to this. . . it's our opportunity to ensure we get all the potential bugs out before our "grand opening." 

Saturday & Sunday November 24th & 25th
Orillia Soft Launch Weekend.
We will be hosting the same sort of weekend but with our Orillia leadership team.  Although there is a lot going on during these weekends they will be the sort of thing that you will look back on in the future and be so glad that you were apart of it!  Keep your eyes peeled for opportunities to volunteer in one of our two new potential locations!

Sunday November 25th
Inside Out Relaunch. After taking a few weeks off our Sunday evening high school environment will be back up and running!  Keep your eyes peeled for some a great changes on this front if we end up being out of the Line 7 facility.

Sunday November 25th
Barrie Second "Dress Rehearsal" Service. Again – don't invite your friends to this service – we want one more time to ensure that we have everything ready to go for Grand Opening.

Sunday December 2nd
Barrie Grand Opening! This is the Sunday to invite your friends to!  "Firsts only happen once."  Don't miss the opportunity to be at the launch of this location and to bring along some friends and family with you.  We are going to be supporting the launch of both potential locations with a significant marketing effort that will include direct mail pieces, radio, internet and a few other surprises.  Although we'll be doing some of that marketing to let the community we're launching each of us need to take the effort to invite our friends directly.  Just ask!

Sunday December 2nd
Orillia Second "Dress Rehearsal" Service. We're going to ask our Orillia folks to resist the urge to come to the Barrie launch and help us host a second "dress rehearsal".  By being in Orillia on this Sunday you are helping us get prepared to host a great experience for your friends in the weeks to come!

Sunday December 9th
Orillia Grand Opening! One of the things that we're working on in securing rental facilities (more on this tomorrow) is that we're planning on having more "empty seats" for our friends.  We want to make room for you to invite as many people as you can to the launch of Connexus.  Who can you be thinking about inviting even now for this launch weekend?

Sunday December 24th

Combined Christmas Eve Service. We're going to be all back together in one location for our Christmas eve service.  These services have been a highlight every year and we're looking forward to this opportunity to gather together again.

Sunday January 5th

KidStuf Relaunch. Our KidStuf crew will be back at their usual craziness with the relaunch of our KidStuf environment for families of kids in grade one through five.  We're going to be hosting KidStuf in a single location for both campuses.  We'll be back into the "first Saturday of the month" routine once we relaunch this environment.

So there it is . . . I warned you . . . lots of details.   Does it make sense?  What can I clarify to help you get your head around what this option might look like?  Tomorrow we'll post what the schedule will look like if we are able to purchase back the Line 7 facility from the Presbytery. 

I've been thinking about the Old Testament story of David and Goliath over these last couple days.  In some ways the challenges that are head of us could be seen as large as Goliath was in comparison to David.   I am bolstered by David's faith when he simply toke his five stones and did what he knew what to do to and in the end God was glorified.   The choice is ours . . . Do we trust God, take what we have and use it
or do we hold onto what we have out of fear and stay on the sidelines?  As a community let's step up this challenge and see it not as too huge to overcome to too big to miss!  Each of us have talents and abilities that can be used to build the kind of church that we believe God is calling us to build.  What are your "five stones" that you can offer into the mix?

Thanks for dropping by.  We look forward to more conversation as we continue to move forward!  Have a great day!  Don't forget to leave your comments.

Rich Birch
Executive Director of Operations
Connexus Community Church

p.s. Are you coming to "involved" on Saturday?  I sure hope so.  It's from 9am – 1pm.  Between 12noon and 1pm there is going to be a "light refreshments reception thingy."  (That is the technical term!)  There is going to be some leadership types that will be around at that point to answer your questions around transitions issues . . . if you have any!  :o)




  1. David Williams says, September 27, 2007 at 8:01 am

    Considering the major upheaval that has been brought about at Trinity and considering the enormous amount of discussion between the congregation when we meet in person, I'm surprised by the lack (virtually non-existant) of comments. What does this "say" about the way Trinity's members really feel about this upset in their spiritual lives? How many people from Trinity really will change from attending church at Trinity to meeting in a movie theatre? There are all kinds of that type of "church" around these days, but what Trinity has/had is very unique. I hope that we are able to retain the present facilities and meet in a church setting and that we continue to explore the other possibilities involving off-site campuses as needed. We live in interesting times!

  2. Carey Nieuwhof says, September 27, 2007 at 2:38 pm

    Hi Dave,

    Thanks for your comments. It is an interesting thing. We've had over 4100 separate visits to the blog since we started it last week, so it's being well read, and hits to the Trinity website are up significantly too. So I think the word is definitely out and people are reading.

    Also, as our staff connect with people I think we're finding most people have a good level of understanding of what the basic issues are. Many we talk to are very excited and waiting to see what happens next, and some are, naturally, concerned or upset. A good chunk have been through significant change and even "upset" before, and some of us remember that our very best seasons in ministry where we saw huge numbers of lives transformed were preceded by uncertainty, risk and upset. I think many of us have seen God's best work preceded by times like these. Naturally, not everyone would agree. But I believe that to be true. So, there may be some explanation in that.

    I would say that the Interim Moderator's meeting happening on Monday night at Trinity (see http://www.trinitycommunity.org) will provide a forum for people who may not want to make the journey to Connexus and who want to explore what a continued Presbyterian presence in Oro might look like. It's great that people who might see an alternate vision have a forum in which to share their hopes.

    In the end, my experience is that some great times of uncertainty and, honestly, fear, precede great works of God. I think it's most important that we love each other through it and seek a deep sense of blessing for all involved.

    By the way, for those of us who have seen what portable church might look like in Barrie and Orillia, it's a great option. So many in our old buildings thought that the move to the school would be a disaster. I think many would agree those were great years. I have a feeling if we did move from this facility we would see the community grow, flourish and become something even greater.

    Thanks for sharing your viewpoint Dave.

  3. John Welles says, September 27, 2007 at 3:24 pm

    "I would say that the Interim Moderator's meeting happening on Monday night at Trinity (see http://www.trinitycommunity.org) will provide a forum for people who may not want to make the journey to Connexus and who want to explore what a continued Presbyterian presence in Oro might look like. It's great that people who might see an alternate vision have a forum in which to share their hopes."

    Why hasn't this been posted on the main page as an important event to mark on our calendars? What is the date?

  4. Stephanie Walker says, September 27, 2007 at 7:24 pm

    Thanks for the details! I appreciate the plans in place for either eventuality and feel much more confident going ahead. I know I am excited about moving forward, learning more and finding out how I can help! See you bright and early Saturday 😉

  5. Rich Birch says, September 27, 2007 at 7:48 pm


    Thanks for the question! The reason it's not on the front page of this site is that the details for the meeting were only finalized by the PCC after the post was written. It will end up in the next post on this site. We have indeed posted it on the Trinity web site and sent a mass email to over 700 people about it. The PCC asked us to announce it on Sunday – we're attempting to get the word out in our other channels as well so that people will know about it.

    Thanks again!

    Rich Birch

  6. Gord Dryburgh says, September 27, 2007 at 9:37 pm

    Wow: You guys are making this move sound so exciting. Reading all this information about the new Connexus church makes me wish I lived in Barrie so that I could participate. All the best, no matter what the final location happens to be. From what I have read and heard about this plan it is bound to be a huge success for God and his people. All the best.

    Gord Dryburgh

  7. Rob Ward says, September 27, 2007 at 10:18 pm

    Like everything else that has happened at Trinity lately, such as the initial vote in Aug and the resignations of the Ministers, Elders and staff, this meeting with the Interim Moderator is happening very quickly and with very little advance notice. As I have been asking Carey the past little while, I will ask here, why the rush? No one has been able to give me a direct answer. I challenge each of you who support the changes to make sure you are doing so because the Spirit has convicted you to do so.

  8. Carey Nieuwhof says, September 28, 2007 at 7:25 am

    Hi Rob,

    It was the Presbytery of Barrie who decided on its own initiative to appoint an interim moderator who would report back to the Presbytery October 9th about the viability of a continued Presbyterian congregation in Oro. At its meeting September 11th, it gave the executive team the power to appoint an interim moderator. The executive team only made the appointment on Tuesday, September 25th. We were informed on Wednesday the 26th and we announced it on Thursday the 27th. The interim moderator set the time and date of the meeting (we were given three options for next week and mutually decided on October 1st as the meeting date). I hope that explains it better.

    Rob, I appreciate your concerns. I think that's a question each person needs to ask themselves and I trust people will do it. I understand you have been attending another church for several years, but our congregation has been working on this in various forms since 2005. Yes, the last few months have unfolded quickly, but it is not without even biblical precedent to see God move quickly and decisively (think of the exodus of the slaves in Egypt. People even had to wear their running shoes ("gird up your loins!") things transpired so quickly). Some may think God is not in this — that's their call. Others among us are deeply waiting on God, excited, reliant, trusting Him. We have seen Him do great things in the past and anticipate great things over the next few months, years and decades. If heaven and hell are real, if people actually do end up in one place or another in the afterlife, and if somehow what we do impacts eternity, I wonder if one day any of us will think this was "fast" at all?

  9. John Welles says, September 29, 2007 at 2:51 pm

    If 'Option A' is the situation we find ourselves in, what would then happen to previously purchased items such as sets, microphones, etc?

    Are they under the ownership of the 'Presbytery' or Connexus?

  10. Michael Creasor says, October 10, 2007 at 12:47 pm

    Given that Option A is now a reality, what can we do now to help with the transition?

  11. John Welles says, October 13, 2007 at 1:54 pm

    Is it possible to recieve some kind of answer to my previous question?

  12. Rich Birch says, October 13, 2007 at 2:01 pm

    Sorry for the delay John . . .

    The short answer is that all assets belong to the PCC. Whether it's the paperclips in the desks or the building it all belongs to the Presbyterian church.


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