Editorials

Read More A Pilgrim’s Perspective From the Editor Ron Powell A Pilgrim’s Perspective
“O little town of Bethlehem, / How still we see thee lie! Above thy deep and dreamless sleep / The silent stars go by.”[1] Our tour bus lumbered up to the first Bethlehem checkpoint on Epiphany, January 6. A group of heavily armed soldiers dragged on their cigarettes and joked with one another as we sat anxiously looking out our tinted windows. It seemed like an unreasonably long wait until an Israeli soldier entered the bus and asked the driver some questions. He examined official-l...
Read More Vital Lessons From My Travels From our General Superintendent David Wells Vital Lessons From My Travels
One of the privileges of my current calling is to be in a variety of international settings with our partners in global mission. Recently, within a matter of a few weeks, I spoke to the leadership of the thriving Assemblies of God fellowship in Ghana, partnered with leading sports ministry personnel at the Rio Olympics, ministered with Susan in churches and a Bible college in Argentina, and participated in leadership at the 24th Pentecostal World Conference in São Paulo, Brazil. In addit...
Read More The Question of Who Matters From our General Superintendent David Wells The Question of Who Matters
I was raised well. My parents taught me by example to treat every person with the God-given respect and dignity they deserve. This was to be shown regardless of the person’s age, gender, race or religious background. I did not always successfully follow my parents’ wise counsel and example. When my next-door friend’s mother used to point out that my behaviour was not appropriate, I’m told that I could get quite lippy with her. I remember being disciplined regularly for t...
Read More The Gift of a Friend From the Editor Stephen Kennedy The Gift of a Friend
We’re sitting in a coffee shop catching up on life. It’s been a year since we sat here in this same coffee shop nursing our hot drinks and covering the gambit of predictable topics. “How’ve you been doing?” We are both in our sixties now. News from the department of “internal affairs” tends to occupy the lead-off position in most conversations. “How’s the family?” Our kids are all grown up now. We discuss the challenges of parenting a...
Read More The Power of a Sentence From the Editor Stephen Kennedy The Power of a Sentence
I was chatting with my daughter on the phone recently. For the past three or four years now, she has spent half of her year in Australia. I’ll leave it to you to guess which half. In the course of our conversation, we learned that we had both just finished reading books that disappointed us. When she asked me why mine had left me underwhelmed, I paused for a second to think and then answered, “There was not one memorable sentence in the entire book.” That got me thinking about ...
Read More A New Generation of Ruths From our General Superintendent David Wells A New Generation of Ruths
I am convinced that women have a shared calling to ministry in the body of Christ. Over the years, I’ve worked through all the scriptural, theological, philosophical and cultural considerations in order to come to this conviction. On a good day, I could recite most of them. But something happened recently that further deepened my conviction. My mom passed away. We need clear theological and philosophical bases for our convictions. With that understood, I’ve learned that those convi...
Read More A Sobering Conclusion From the Editor Stephen Kennedy A Sobering Conclusion
“Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34a). I think, if you’d asked them, they would have said they knew what they were doing. The Roman soldier who took up the mallet and nails knew what he was doing. Undoubtedly, he’d done it many times before. He’d honed the skill of kneeling on the outstretched arm to pin it still, of placing the tip of the spike in the sweet spot so that the crucial first blow drove the nail through skin and...
Read More A Vital Convergence From our General Superintendent David Wells A Vital Convergence
During the first week of May, delegates from across Canada and around the world will gather in Montreal, Que., for our biennial PAOC General Conference. The theme of the conference is “Vitality,” and our conversations will consider our spiritual, theological and missional vitality. Ten days later, on May 15, 2016, our churches will be celebrating Pentecost Sunday. The convergence of these two events provides an opportunity for us to examine who we are as a Spirit-empowered movement, ...
Read More The PAOC’s 2020 Initiative – An update from the general superintendent From our General Superintendent David Wells The PAOC’s 2020 Initiative – An update from the general superintendent
Our national and district leadership, along with congregational and ministry leaders across the country, are actively committed to the goals of our 2020 Initiative and are trusting in God to see them fulfilled. We are exercising that trust in God with faith, prayer and obedient action. Our desire is to be a Fellowship of churches, ministries and leaders who experience spiritual vitality, theological vitality, and missional vitality. We believe for the following to be true of the PAOC by Decembe...
Read More At the Last Stop From the Editor Stephen Kennedy At the Last Stop
It had been a long day in Jerusalem, as had every other day since our arrival. We were four days into a six-day whirlwind press tour of Israel. My body was tired, my brain was overloaded, and I’d had enough. Then the bus stopped again. Our day had begun with a stroll down the Hosanna Road that descends from the Mount of Olives to the boundaries of Jerusalem. Gaining momentum from our downhill journey, we attacked the city, stopping at every possible attraction along the way.  Dutifull...
Read More Slim Pickings VIII From the Editor Steven Kennedy Slim Pickings VIII
Normally, this hodgepodge of editorial musings wouldn’t surface until the spring. Maybe it’s the confusion of weather patterns that has birthed it sooner. Or maybe it’s the absence of any coherent train of thought. Whatever the reason, here it is. It’s not how you want your hometown to make headlines.  For all but six of my 60 plus years, I’ve lived in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada. We have raised our children here and are watching them raise their children he...
Read More A Painful, Marvellous Gathering From our General Superintendent What an amazing opportunity! A Painful, Marvellous Gathering
The Pentecostal World Fellowship and our chair, Dr. Prince Guneratnam, had asked me to be their spokesperson at a historic consultation of church leaders from 56 different nations. For three humbling, soul-searching, and at times heartbreaking days, we focused on the intensifying discrimination, persecution and violence against Christian communities around the world.  For the first time in modern history, every stream of global Christianity came together to listen to and learn from Christi...
Read More I Believe in Dinosaurs From our General Superintendent David Wells I Believe in Dinosaurs
My Friday began, like most days, with my routine of listening to the Scriptures, a breakfast of yogurt and coffee, and a quick check of the overnight emails. That’s when the morning took a turn—in a good way. In my inbox was an email with the subject line “Hello from a pastor’s kid.” It began with a bright, cheerful greeting: “Hello, Mr. Wells!” The sender mentioned her name and family and then stated, “You might remember me. I gave you a little di...
Read More One Day From the Editor Steve Kennedy One Day
I read a story recently, one I’ve read many times before. This time I was caught by the opening two words. The first line of the story reads: “One day Peter and John were going up to the temple at the hour of prayer—at three in the afternoon” (Acts 3:1). I’ve preached this story more times than I can remember, but I can’t ever recall those first two words jumping out at me like they did this time. “One day ...” If you’ve read the story, you k...
Read More A New Old Friend From the Editor Steve Kennedy A New Old Friend
It’s a five-foot baby grand piano built by the Mason & Risch Piano Company of Toronto. For 50 years or more it offered up its soul in service to the church—and bears the marks to prove it. The gleam is gone from its finish. Scratches and chips mar its complexion. Scars mark the places where amateur repairs have been made, one or two of the keys are sticky, and the bench is a little wobbly. But the ivory keys are flawless—except for one hairline crack on G5. And despite bein...
Read More In Such a Time as This From our General Superintendent David Wells In Such a Time as This
I remember them being assigned as homework in quick succession during my high school years. George Orwell’s 1984, Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, and Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451. All three writers offered their interpretation of what society might look like if powerful people with a single way of thinking controlled it. And then there was William Golding’s Lord of the Flies, perhaps the ultimate illustration of groupthink evolving into chaos. Each book carried a sense ...
Read More Waiting For An Invitation From the Editor Steve Kennedy Waiting For An Invitation
One of the intriguing aspects of being a server in a restaurant is working around the edges of conversations. I have confessed before that when I am dining alone in a restaurant or sitting alone in any public space, I am an unrepentant eavesdropper. Some of my best sermon illustrations, poems and editorial starters have come to me via this habit. But this is different. My interaction with a customer has one primary goal, and that is to determine what they want to order. How else will I know if t...
Read More The Randomness of Sovereignty From our General Superintendent David Wells The Randomness of Sovereignty
God’s sovereignty is both a comforting and a mysterious concept. We express our confidence in His sovereignty when we make statements such as, “the Lord knows” or “His will be done” or when we sing songs like “God Is in Control” and “He Reigns.” Yet we often wrestle with the idea of God’s sovereignty, especially when events that take place in our life appear random. When a family that loves Jesus is hit with tragedy, or when disease str...
Read More Listening to the Body From the Editor Steve Kennedy Listening to the Body
It’s taken me 59 years, but I am finally trying to listen to my body. The fact that it is talking to me more loudly than ever before may have something to do with my newfound attention to it. The arrival of grandkids has been a catalyst for change as well. The invitation to get down on the floor and play trucks is one I want to accept, as will be the ones to swim, fish, play ball, ride bikes, or any of the other hundred things I dream of doing with them. Unfortunately, decades of undisci...
Read More  Empowerment — More Than a Nice Idea From our General Superintendent David Wells Empowerment — More Than a Nice Idea
One of the six strategic responses expected of PAOC churches and ministries in our 2020 Initiative1 is “Equipping for Spirit-empowered living.” Empowerment has been a popular concept in leadership circles over the last number of years. The theory is that if you give someone a responsibility or a mission to accomplish, they should also receive a corresponding amount of authority and resources to fulfil that task.     Unfortunately, a feeling of disempowerment in c...