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August 2007
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October 2007

The No-Worship-Service Worship

In what many might consider a controversial move, we, the leaders at Grace Community Church, canceled our regular Sunday worship services yesterday and planned an all-church participation in our community's Terry Fox Run (for more info on the Terry Fox Run, read my previous post).  A number of our members and faithful attendees have regularly participated in the event to raise funds and awareness for cancer research.  In our ongoing efforts to become "the greatest love source" in our community, we decided to worship God by loving others and join in this event.

For weeks we encouraged our church family to participate, citing that we want to put our lives where our love is - and vice versa.  Our dear friend Michele Troughton, a cancer survivor herself, served as our in-house liaison for the event and assisted people with their fund raising and alternative opportunities to volunteer at various booths at the event if they were unable to perform the actual run (ride or walk).

We were so excited that nearly 150 people (60%) of our regular attendees came out for the Run.  We pretty much doubled the number of people in attendance.  Our own Michele publicly shared her journey through the cancer war and Pastor Bartley was asked to lead an opening prayer, an unheard of request for this multi-faith community.  The sea of red shirts with our motto for the fall "Love Changes Everything" across the back was a powerful image.  The love of Jesus was definitely being shared on this special day.

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A sea of red shirts - Grace putting love into action

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Pastor Bartley Sawatsky finishing the 10K run - and he ran the whole way!