Thursday, March 31, 2005


I met a new athiest friend online recently. On the discussion forum, Peter is a poster who picks people's perceptions poignantly. Please peruse Peter's packed publication:

What was the event that lead you to make the "Leap of Faith" to Christianity (in whatever form/denomination you believe)?

I'm hoping this isn't an improper question to ask... but I'm hoping someone will share this information. Before you continue, remember I am an Atheist.Because I am very confused.Ok let me tell you a bit about myself. My first memory was of my father carrying me on his shoulders on a camping trip. Unfortunately, this memory had a rather unfortunate ending. My dad had a heart attack and died...

My girlfriend wanted to go to a dance at her school... I don't dance or do public events! I was scheduled to work anyways so I said go and have fun. The last words I ever said to her. She was killed that night in a car crash by some drunk kids who smashed into the car she was in. What made matters worse to me was the knowledge that if I was there, I would have been the person in the passenger seat (due to my size) and not her. No one else was badly hurt in the car. The injustice of it all offended me to the core. Why did these drunk and stoned kids in the other car not even suffer a scratch? Why my girlfriend die? Of all people?... She (like me) was totally against drugs and alcohol. Why God? Why? Why? God has never answered me.Now I don't know if God had a hand in this, so I can't say I blame him. But she was NOT a Christian, and if what I had read in the Bible was true, she was going to be tortured for eternity. Yet those scum that killed her might be saved? What kind of God would allow that?

Perhaps you could take a minute and respond to Peter with some insight into how Christ changed your life.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

The Crux of the matter

Christian Hip-hop pioneer Phil Tremblay (aka Versatile) recently launched his production site Crux productions. Crux has full recording studio facilites ready to serve your musical needs. Aspiring musicians/rapper can record demos or full-length CD's.

Monday, March 28, 2005

Scooter's corner

The crew invited our boyz Caleb and Hansen to tell about their experiences in Toronto. Here's the scoop from "scooters corner":

Caleb and Hansen did a wonderful job sharing about their trip to Toronto. A big thanks to them for gettin up in front of all you scary folks... Both guys shared about their encounter their contact with the different religions in Toronto. Both guys agreed that the people in these religions were very serious about their beliefs... and the guys were challenged to be more serious about their own faith.

Friday, March 25, 2005

How many shootings do your youth group kids see?

Tonight Clayon came over. He's one of our youth group kids. He's on March break and after hangin at our place, I was drove him home. When I pulled up to his house to drop him off he stalled getting out of the car, as usual, so we could talk longer. It's nice getting one on one time with these guys. But tonight was different. As we were sitting there he pointed to the convenience store within a stones throw of his house and he got all excited and said "yo, did you see the news about the shooting here yesterday?" I said I hadn't, and so we went over and saw the scene of the crime, a little dry cleaners in the corner of the strip mall. Clayon lives in the closest house to the shooting. He told me about when the police came and the canine unit walking over his lawn looking for the suspect. It made me wonder what it would do to someone to experience that. And not just to experience it once.

Here are the newspaper articles:
1. 680 news
2. Toronto Star article:
TORONTO STAR STAFF - Shop owner hurt in shooting...Police are hunting for a gunman who walked into a Scarborough dry cleaner's around noon yesterday and fired a single shot at the owner...
Officers brought in the canine unit and fanned out around the small plaza on Victoria Park Ave., just north of Finch Ave. E., looking for any sign of the gunman or a weapon...
Jilessen said the owner has a wife and daughter who sometimes help out at the store.
The full text of the articles are on the forum.

This isn't like an "out of the blue" thing either. I remember last year when another teen, who lives near Clayon came over telling us about a lady who had cut off another ladies hand just down the street from her. She was recently sentenced:

Machete attacker jailed:

Tensions had been building between the two neighbours, who lived on Chester Le Boulevard, near Victoria Park and Finch Avenues. The woman was under a court order to have no contact with Monast after being charged the previous year with assault with a weapon for injuring her with a tossed beer bottle, court heard...
On the day of the machete attack, Monast awoke from a nap and noticed her door was open. She closed it, but a few minutes later the attacker was running at her, swinging a machete at her head, the judge said...
Monast tried to protect herself by raising her hands, the judge said. At least two significant swings aimed at her head and neck hit home, he said...
The first cut the side of her face and severed her left hand, leaving it hanging, court heard...
When Monast ran behind the basement door, the woman hacked at it with the machete, the judge said. Things quieted down, so Monast emerged from the basement, but the attacker came after her again, severing her right hand...
The attack only ended when Monast collapsed on the floor, believing the attacker wouldn’t leave her alone until she thought she had killed her.

Again, back to my original questions. How many times have things like this happened near your youth group kids? How do you deal with that level of emotional trauma? What would it be like to experience things like this on a regular basis? How can we expect to reach kids like this with games or a devotional or one hour on Sunday? What does an "inner-city" church look like and where are the resources for folks who work in these areas? Lord, we need your help.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Matt & Gina, together forever

Posted by Hello
My good buddy Matt Lynch got married March 19th, 2005 to the lovely Gina O'Donnell. Best wishes to the young couple for a life of endless happiness and covenant theology debates :)

Monday, March 21, 2005

Darby Sheen

Ok, this is one of the funniest things I have seen in a long time. Cam found a picture of John Darby, and put it next to a picture of Charlie Sheen. I must have laughed for 10 minutes when I saw this

New Uplook site online

Found Uplooks new site today. Check it out -

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Drums in the assembly?

Take a read of Dave the Aussies blog - HERE - to hear how he effectively did what we are talking about on the forum, namely putting old hymns to moden music! Dave attends a plymouth brethren assembly in Australia (Sydney):
I think the highlight of my weekend would have been today... As a Christian Assembly (generically Plymouth Bretheren) music at our church is very conservative. Usually old songs, written before I was born. Recently the older people in our church have been working hard and we have been getting music around the 1980's at church. We've always only had a single piano with a violin being added in the last six months or played Drums in front of 200 people..."Grace of God" that the general reaction was good. As in most conservative churches there are people who don't think too highly of the drums and we were really worried that we would offend. So far no comment, actually one more conservative brother approached Ranen and gave him positive feedback Smile
..In some respects it is a reason why we picked a song with such good lyrics ( The old "solid rock hymn" we played with a modern tune)...I think by the end of it most people were comfortable with it and I think it opens the door for the future where we can play praise God through music in a modern way without distracting or compromising true worship Smile

Good idea? Bad idea? Click & comment

Dream? Or nightmare?

Bill Yeo, former Bible college friend (now missionary friend), had a dream about another former Bible college friend thursday night:
I had a dream Wednesday night, another strange one. Jos Levesque, a fellow I went to Bible College, but have rarely seen since, in my dream, was the newest bass guitar player for Petra. Weird.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

P-unit day 4 - finale

Posted by HelloWell it came and went all too quickly. Seems like just yesterday we were at the mosque and now it's all was yesterday that we were at the mosque....umm.....well you know what I mean. The posse of Peterborough prayer partners have pleasantly parted, particularly pleased by partaking in pertinent participation of plenary and profitable proclamation and publication.

I've posted the pictures so check out:

Day 1: no pics :( - does anyone from the trip have pics of day 1?

Day 2: - CLICK HERE -

Day 3: - CLICK HERE -

Day 4: - CLICK HERE -

Videos: - CLICK HERE -

Written reports: - CLICK HERE -

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Monday, March 14, 2005

P-unit in da house

Sitting here in the living room with the boys from Peterborough.
Caleb, Cory, Tristan, Sean, Dan and Hansen (who's blog is located at
LIz ( and Jo are at Jean Rogers and Veronica ( is hosting Bobbie and Mel.

Hope to keep you all updated.

Pray for Peterborough posse please

Just wanted to ask for prayer for a "missions trip" I'm leading this week.
No it's not to Greece, or Africa or the Middle East.
It's a missions trip TO US!!!

A group of young people from Peterborough Ontario, on their march break, are coming down here to Toronto to stay with us and experience the big bad multicultural city!

Steve Yuille got the ball rolling, and the team of 10 young people will be accompanied by Jim Easton, and the fearless Doug Anderson ( and his 12-seater van from Braidwood Bible Chapel. The van will be full to the brim with teenage zeal so pray for us as we visit many locations throughout the city doing evangelism and encountering many different cultures and religions! We'll be visiting a Mosque, a Hindu temple, touring MSC, Sanctuary, street preaching, handing out tracts, knocking on doors, meeting with ethnic believers and unbelievers, and dining on some of the hottest foods these kids have ever tasted!! Wow, what a way to spend your March Break!

It is bound to be something the kids will never forget. Perhaps this is something you too could do with your youth group. If you want to take your kids on a missions trip, but are concerned about how much it will cost to go overseas, why not come down to Toronto? Bring em down, we've got room!!

Saturday, March 12, 2005

Michelle :: I hate hymns

In the forum discussion about "Rap music in worship" - HERE - there have been many opinions flying around about what is appropriate music:

Pucci said:
Rapping scripture? You are kidding me right? I can tell that to my husband who is a non-believer and he would laugh and even say something is wrong with thatIf you are going to be just like the world and do things just like the world then there is no distinction between a christian and a lost person. The lost person will see no difference between themselves and a Christian and they will think why do they need to be saved if these "saved people are just like me."

Well we asked Mark P, and Michelle - regular forum participants - who are not believers, to post their thoughts and test this theory.

Mark said:
There is nothing wrong with music being used to spread the word in my opinion. I am not "saved" as some of you might say, but I see no wrong in it.
Michelle flat out said:
I'm not a "christian", but i do attend services occassionally, and personally i hate hymns. They bore me.
So there you have it. Maybe more folks would come to our churches if we were a bit more accepting. Also, those of us who make such strong statements about what the "world" will like and not like, should try asking a few of them first to make sure. Or at least try to break out of our little christian "kumaya group" and reaching out in creative ways! :)

I'd be interested to hear what Pucci's husband actually thought of the idea. Any other unbelievers out there that think rapping in church is a bad idea? Watering down the message? Being like the world?

Friday, March 11, 2005

Thursday, March 10, 2005 sweepstakes #2 - the 2000th post contest!!!!

Alright athensblog readers! During the last sweepstakes, you watched in anticipation to see who would be the first to crack the code and win the free MP3. You watched as Stevey Bourgeois walked off with the lute and claimed the title of first ever sweepstakes champion! Here's Stevey B jamming to his new download:

Still feeling bitterness and resentment over missing your chance! Don't risk another bout of depression, get on the forum right now and be the one to log the 2000th post! God has blessed our little brethren discussion forum and in just over a month we have registered 53 people and logged almost 2000 posts.

The person that registers the 2000th post will win their very own "room" on the forum. Call it the "basketball room", the "Toronto room", or just be selfish and name it after yourself! Whatever you name it, you better claim it first ;). Click - HERE - for more details.

Don't be left behind, time is running out!

*UPDATE - we have a winner - Blake Kennedy posted #2000 and has created the "Blake Kennedy house of sermon reviews" on the forum*

White Men CAN jump...

Doug Anderson, from Braidwood Bible Chapel, and his 12 seater van full of youth from Peterborough are coming down next week to hit the GTA on a "missions trip", over the March break. They will be stayin at our place and with others from Bridlegrove Bible Chapel. Now Doug is a bit of a missionary himself up in PTBO, with his basketball program "streethoops". Here is their website. Be sure to pray for them as they reach out to the community up there, and help us down here. Props to da P-unit!! (Peterborough)
Also, here is Todd Anderson's blog -

Monday, March 07, 2005

Hip Hop church

Julie Kennedy posted on the forum about a church in Harlem called "Hip Hop church" where:
Two decades after releasing his breakout record, old school pioneer Kurtis Blow has instituted Hip-Hop church services at two Harlem parishes. "The kids need to learn about God, but even the ones who already know God don't like the church, because church is boring," Blow told the New York Post.

What we do isn't boring — it's energetic, it's uplifting, it's spiritual — and the kids can relate to it. We speak the word of God in a language they can understand — rap."

Blow rocks a DJ booth and commands the microphone at the weekly services held Fridays at Harlem's Abyssinian Baptist Church and Greater Hood Memorial AME Zion Church. During a recent service, Blow was supported by acts including Shades of Faith Introducing Prophecy, The Hip-Hop Church Band, guest rappers and break-dancers. In February 2005, Blow plans to enroll at New York School Ministry in his quest to become a minister.
My jealousy runneth over. I think this is a great idea. Why not use Hip Hop for good? The kids are already listening to it, and here is an example of one bad role model who is getting lots of publicity:

Jeffrey Atkins....aka JA RULE
U.S. rapper Ja Rule pleaded guilty to assault and was fined C$1,500 ($1,219) by a Canadian court for delivering "one punch to the eye" of a nightclub patron last year, his lawyer said on Monday.
The kids are listening to hip-hop anyway.What do you think of hip-hop in da house of da Lord? CLICK HERE to post your thoughts

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Lego Bible updated!

Check out the latest updates from the Lego Bible

1. Massacre at Bezek
2. Jerusalem massacred
3. Four massacres and a wedding
4. Iron Charoits

Uplook "cult" of Nicholson?

Picked up a copy of the "Toronto Easter Bible conference" flyer at Bridlegrove today and noticed the speaker for the March 25 & 26th conference was none other than J.B. (Jabe) Nicholson. I always enjoy listening to Jabe, and I hear lately that he is planning to cut back on his preaching schedule so he can dedicate more time to evangelism and spreading the gospel! Good for him! Seems he is tired of the status quo of full-time workers just doing the preaching circuit, filling the pulpit sunday after sunday, and that is good to hear from someone who has a measure of "sway" with folks in conservative assemblies.

There has been, however, some controversy on the discussion forum about Jabe's stance on Calvinism and the sense of "hero worship" that follows him in our circles. In the Easter conference flyer it describes him as being "held in high regard as a Bible teacher", and rightly so. I don't think we put guys like him on a pedastal for no reason. The guy knows his Bible and it is nice to listen to him. Some, however, have issues with, what they call, his "cult/vatican" in grand rapids.

can you comment further on your comment; "I can say I get upset with the hardcore antagonism of the Grand Rapids cult (i.e. Nicholsonism)" !?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?

Russian wrote:
Yes. What I mean by, "hardcore antagonism", is that Jabe Nicholson has been steadily cramming his lower leg further and further down his throat on the issue of Calvinism every time he speaks on it, following in the dog crap-laden footprints of Dave Hunt on this issue, I suppose. I think he's just nearing his knee by now. He wants to make it an issue of contention, rather than build consensus...

As for the Cult itself, I'm sorry, the Nicholson "name brand" carries a value far outstripping its worth, I'm afraid. And I have heard many stories (which were communicated to me in confidence, I'm afraid), of the promotion done by that group of Nicholson-worshippers. They've created a minivatican in Grand Rapids for themselves, and I'm altogether underwhelmed by the quality of work they put out. I myself have been in a conference where it was like there should be some sort of hushed awe (like Mr. Burns got when he announced the worker of the week when he takes the stage. And then I listened to what he said, and while it wasn't horrible, it wasn't anything that I felt immediately compelled to jump up and call everybody I've ever known about.
Now myself personally I have not waded into the whole calvanism debate, but from my experience with some assemblies it is true they have made it a bigger issue than it needs to be. As for the "cult" idea, I think the issue there is that Jabe knows the scripture better than most of us, and, just like in any profession, you look to those more knowledgeable than yourself. I don't think Jabe is the "cult leader", but rather, over the years folks have looked to him as some spiritual overseer. People in the conservative assemblies have put him on that pedistal, not himself.

I remember talking to Jabe's dad, Boyd Sr., when he was speaking in PEI at a conference on the high-priest's garments. He had this huge picture of the high-priest with all the urrim & thummin and stuff. Boyd Sr. told me how he had been able to learn the Bible so well. From his youth, an older man had taken Boyd Sr. under his wing. Every Sunday this older man would have him over for lunch and "disciple" him. Hours and hours of Bible teaching. The man would challenge and test, give Boyd homework. "Granted" he said "most of it went over my head, but alot of it stuck". So Nicholson Sr. was discipled something that is terribly lacking in our assemblies today.

The other thing that helped Boyd Sr. to become such a good Bible teacher was that he became the editor of some christian publication back way before uplook (can't remember), and he was required to write in this publication daily comments on every verse in the entire Bible. So he learned a systematic, complete overview of scripture, something which also is lacking in our assemblies. No wonder people flocked to him with googley eyes as he expounded the scripture better than anyone else out there.

Click here to post what you think about Uplook

Aussie's "raise" the bar!

Check this out - from Dave's youth group in Australia - CLICK HERE:
Sunday, February 6
Gospel For Asia
Just wanted to say I am really really proud of you guys and your donations to GFA!!! It's really good to see that people at Blaze are willing to support people o'seas sharing the gospel. For those of you who were not there the amount came to $281.70!!!!!! so thats really good. Keep praying for the work of the gospel, (and for people you know who are o'seas sharing the gospel) and keep supporting these people

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Loggin in

March stats:

8 stay overnight
23 people for dinner
650 tracts
30 doors
x preach (1 funeral, 1 youth, 1 PTBO group)
- 37 kids @ youth (2 new)
- 2 major events - Ebenji & PTBO trip

25March05-Sat - Easter conference
24March05-Fri - Good friday service @ BBC, Easter conference
23March05-Thurs- Hayley speaking at Markham Bible Chapel ladies time apart
22March05-Wed - Prayer meeting
22March05-Tues- Josh, Colleen, Don, Carolyn, Aaron, Dawn over (+ dinner)
21March05-Mon - Catch up on paperwork
20March05-Sun - BofB, FBH, Hayley's parents arrive (2 stay over)
19March05-Sat - 9AM pick up Benji. 10AMBenji @ Leaside. 7:30PM, meeting at Yuilles
17March05-Thurs-Read to daycare kids, MSC tour, Crew heads home
16March05-Wed - Hand out 200 tracts @ highschools, knock on 30 doors
15March05-Tues- 9AM at chapel, GFA video, 10:30 Slavik Church (woodbine), 11AM Hindu Temple, Indian restaurant, Stop at CN Tower, Tour of Sanctuary, Dinner at Eaton Center, Street preaching with Jeff Lockwood (200 tracts at least), kids meet Edward & Anna at our place for tea (17), to billets.
14March05-Mon - PTBO crew arrives 12 total (6 stay over at our place), settle, dinner at patti's, to billets
13March05-Sun - BofB, FBH, Markham Bible Chapel evening service
12March05-Sat - Benji @ Leaside, Bridlegrove Annual meeting 8-9:30
11March05-Fri - meet with Benji, 100 tracts @ MAC
10March05-Thurs - 100 tracts @ henry,
09March05-Wed - plan march break, prayer meeting
07March05-Mon - Plan march break, call Benji, Sanctuary, Josh Harding over
06March05-Sun- BofB, FBH, Hayley to evening service
05March05-Sat- at Jason & Eder Tremblay's
04March -Fri - 100 tracts @ MAC, phil tremblay rap performance, 37 kids @ youth (2 new)
03March05-Thurs-plan march break missions trip, Ebenji, Matthan over
02March05-Wed - prayer with ladies, elders, hand out 150 flyers at highschool,
01March05-Tues - Grandmas funeral

February report

Sorry these are a bit late. My grandma's funeral took priority.
Month end stats:
5 - stayed overnight (michelle for a week)
18 - over to house to eat
2 - home bible studies
100 tracts
40 kids at youth (20/week avg, 3 new)
Preached 3 times
1 event - superbowl with clayon/kevin

Before Israel - click here
Israel - details- click here

While in Israel:
-michelle here all week
-joy peat stays overnight
-Jason & Eder over
-shauna over
-babysat lisa & samantha
-Mona's funeral
-Lukas at sick kids

After Israel:

23Feb05-Wed - arrive 6PM Pearson
24Feb05-Thurs - recovery day
25Feb05-Fri - Evaline does youth, Shawn gets news of grandma's passing - meet family
26Feb05-Sat - Colleen over
27Feb05-Sun - BofB, FBH, lunch with aunts, plan funeral
28Feb05-Mon - visit funeral home, prepare eulogy
01March05 - Funeral

Best Christian artist?

Derek Webb, or the Cross Movement - YOU decide - click here to vote

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Phil Tremblay (Versatile) live at Bridlegrove

Well all you hip-hop fans, the one and only "Versatile" is live this Friday at 7PM. He will bring his flava of christian hip-hop straight to the B-unit.

Check the concert fyler - HERE - B-there!