Friday, January 26, 2007

A Report from ESL Ministries in Kitchener - Waterloo

The KW regional gathering started with two of us who shared the task of phoning area churches and ministries to enquire if they had anyone interested in ESL ministry whom we could use as a contact person by email. We sent an email to introduce ourselves (using BCC for privacy) to all of our collected contacts (about 25) and heard back from 16 of them. We advertised the Fall SOCEM Gathering and had one person join us on the trip to Toronto and back. The trip itself proved to be a good opportunity to do some brainstorming and planning. Now we were 3!

We decided to try to hold a meeting so we chose a Monday evening in November and invited people. The only ones who could come were the three of us. We let it go for that time. In December, we decided it would be nice to meet in early January, so again we invited people for a time of discussion (with dessert and coffee thrown in), but this time gave a choice of 9 days/times to choose from. We ended up with a Monday evening with 7 of us present. There was a good mix of experienced and new people and of various church traditions.

We introduced ourselves and our ministries and talked through some ideas concerning the purpose of a KW ESL ministry group. We were able to share many ideas about opportunities in the KW area and how various ministries have met various needs. All appreciated the benefit of a cooperative effort in ESL. Certainly we need to be aware of each other's ministries and offer mutual encouragement. We decided not to meet very often but did set a date to meet again in April, hoping that more people could join us then.

Carol, Betty, and Bev

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