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November 2018 Newsletter


 The Lord is near to all

who call on Him...Psalm 145:18



November 2018

Dear Friends,

The song verse below was one of Mother Basilea’s favorites. How often we sang it over and over as a large sister family at our headquarters in Germany.

God is always greater, God is always greater. Always greater!

God is greater than our problems. Always greater!               God is greater than all my needs. Always greater!

She always encouraged us to put our faith and trust in a great God who loves and cares for us each day anew.
Over the years we have also experienced this at our little branch in Canada. This year has been especially challenging. Bitter cold and snow put the Easter Sonrise Service in jeopardy. Winter seemed to jump right into summer heat with little time to prepare the grounds for the visitor season. The spring melt came on suddenly. On either side of Canaan a torrent of melting snow flowed down through the ravines toward the lake. Washouts around the Prayer Garden were a serious threat.

Most of our visitors come to Canaan in the summer but the heat waves and smoke from the BC forest fires made it uncomfortable to be outside to work or to spend time in the Prayer Garden. In September the summer drought suddenly became winter snow and rain. Our farmers were just preparing to harvest and two large groups were planning to visit the Prayer Garden. Would any of it still be possible?

Still God is always greater! Cold yes, but never too cold. In late March 40-45 people came in the early dark hours to participate in the Sonrise Service. No one wanted to stay inside! At the end Pastor Roy’s long beard was white with frost. We were all able to warm up again with a shared fellowship breakfast before heading out to our different churches for the Easter services.

God is always greater! As things dried up after the snow melt a group of nineteen young people asked to come to help us. In a single day all the spring clean up was completed. That included setting up the Prayer Garden reliefs, cleaning, raking and preparing all the flower beds. Canaan was open for the season.

God is always greater! There were days during the summer when the winds changed, the smoke cleared allowing us to work outside and visitors to spend time in the Prayer Garden. From the guest book: “How sweet to spend time all together with the Lord.” and A pastor and elders’ group came for a prayer and visioning day: “Thank you for tending this refuge.”

God is always greater! In spite of the drought we experienced an abundant harvest from our vegetable garden; also beautiful flowers. Lots of vitamin rich berries were also there for us to pick before the wasps arrived for their share.

God is always greater! The late fall brought dryer weather so that the farmers could finish their harvest. A large group of thirty first graders came one morning and then a group of teachers and staff from another school were able to spend their time in the Prayer Garden in the afternoon.

At this point in time we are also trusting that God is always greater over the continuing threat of a postal strike! Over the summer several people came specifically to pick up books from the book table. We are receiving more orders over the internet but they still need to be mailed out.

Someone from BC mailed us a photocopy of a leaflet “Guided All Week Long.” She had kept it over many years, reading and rereading it until the letters on the page were faded out. How thankful she was not only to receive a new colour copy but also the 15 others in the series.

Retreat near Ottawa
This year’s retreat “In His Presence” helped all of us to realize how the Lord Himself desires close fellowship with us and wants to tabernacle with us. Through Bible studies, worship and personal prayer times the four days were filled with many blessings. “Thank you so much for planning an amazing retreat.”
“It’s a wonderfully rich and inspiring retreat ... We feel very much In His Presence.

Next year’s retreat is scheduled for October 3-6, 2019. The theme will be “Name Above All Names”.
Philippians 2:9 “Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name.” Please watch for the schedule and registration information in our next newsletter.

Praying effectively - but how?
Sister Joela shares in this message (listed on the order form) the importance of staying connected with our Lord Jesus in prayer, especially in these uncertain times. His Holy Spirit will be our guide and helper. We always have an open door to bring the needs of our families, churches, communities and our country before His throne of grace. Truly, “the kingdom, the power and the glory are His, now and for ever. Amen.”
Mother Basilea has left us a wealth of prayers and songs. What an opportunity we are given to join with believers worldwide in the unity of the Spirit. One reader comments to Building a Wall of Prayer: “This book has taught me what to do in this time of crisis for my country. It is a storehouse of God’s truth.”

May our Lord Jesus bless you in the coming Advent and Christmas season as we seek to worship and honour Him in our homes and wherever He may open doors to share His love with others.

Yours in His love and fellowship, the Sisters of Mary

Prayer means lovingly seeking the heart of Jesus
and submitting our hearts and wills to His.
Jesus has promised us abundant fruit
as we live in close contact with Him. MB

Evangelical Sisterhood of Mary, RR#1, Millet, AB T0C 1Z0 canaan@xplornet.com / 780-352-4880