“I’ve been coming to Convention Assembly [Oasis] for sixty years, and this is the best one yet.” This was just one of the comments heard at Oasis 2012. Oasis has recently wrapped up for another year and it was amazing! Hundreds of people gathered at Crandall University to experience a refreshment that can only come from God’s spirit. At least 212 churches were represented and 869 delegates and visitors registered this year (inc. children & youth). We also had many more who came to take in a day or a session [If you attended, please take a few minutes and fill out our survey so we can continue to make Oasis better and better – http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/oasis-2012-survey].
A special treat for Wednesday evening was the presence of the New Brunswick Lieutenant Governor Graydon Nicholas who brought greetings to the Assembly. Inspiring worship was led by Jeff Somers & Band. As well Executive Minister Dr. Peter Reid addressed the people with a message about “Pursuing the Dream” and striving for the finish line. Following the rally, everyone gathered in the Dining Hall to greet those being presented to their churches for ordination as well as those with prior ordination being recognized.
Thursday and Friday mornings were our Family Business Sessions. Each morning was started with worship and a devotional from Dr. Harry Gardner (ADC) and Dr. Bruce Fawcett (Crandall). Acadia Divinity College introduced two new staff members and gave us a clear picture of ADC’s strong future. Motions that were brought and passed were Ammendments to the Bylaw, Restructuring of the Atlantic Baptist Mission Board, new senior staff appointments as well as the usual nominating committee report and budget presentation. The motion dealing with the request for partnership with the Atlantic Society for Biblical Equality was debated and was put back to Council for further discussion. As well the CABC and CBM signed a partnership agreement in the area of Intercultural Ministries which Paul Carline will be directing.
Thursday afternoon, several hundred people gathered to take part in a commissioning service for Dr. Bruce Fawcett, incoming President of Crandall University.
Thursday evening we heard Dr. Allan Demond speak about “Think Mission Until It’s Fun Again” using the book of Deuteronomy as his text. He spoke three times over the course of Oasis breaking his theme down into “Think Blessing” (we are called to be “blessing brokers”), “Think Heritage” (we are called to be “heritage makers”), and “Think Life” (life is a gift from God). Through his gifts as a communicator and light Aussie accent, Allan easily engaged people and gave them much to think about in the following days [If you want to order CDs/DVDs/Downloadable Audio & Video, please contact Chris at Express Duplication 1-877-435-1100. These are available for anyone to purchase. New this year is the availability to purchase audio recordings of some of the workshops. Contact Chris for more details.].
We also enjoyed afternoon concerts and Oasis Cafe with Aldersgate (Thursday) and Stephanie Mainville (Friday). We don’t need to look too far to hear gifted musicians and song writers whose desire is to glorify God.
It was great to hear from Canadian Baptist Ministries how God is moving the church in Canada to have a global impact. Sam Chaise, Terry Smith, Brenda Halk (CBM President) and others shared the impact our field staff (new, current & retiring) have had in far regions of the world.
A couple of great successes at Oasis this year included the Early Morning Prayer Time with Dr. Frank Guinta (they outgrew their space in the chapel) and the Soul Cafe with Rev. Chery Ann Beals and team of spiritual mentors (60+ different people visited). It’s exciting to see how God moves his people to prayer and leaning on each other in times of need.
Some other highlights included the wide range of seminars offered (topics like church planting, global hunger, the impact of digital technology in the church, hospitality, conflict and many more). Thanks to all the seminar leaders. After hours events included the Executive Minister’s Kitchen Party, CBM Coffee House and the Atlantic Baptist Foundation Reception.
The Friday Night Arts Celebration is always a favorite. This year we had comedians (Chip & Dip), a rap/hip hop artist (One8Tea), a opera singer (Derrick Paul Miller), a painter (Janet Demond), and a dance/black light group (Worship in Motion). Everyone was able to come away with something they enjoyed all agreeing that God uses people’s gifts and talents for His glory. Thanks to all the participants!
Our time on Saturday ended with a communion service led by Rev. David Morehouse from The Journey Church. This is a fitting way to end out time together as we are sent out to our churches and communities to do mission, be blessing brokers, heritage makers, and choose life.
Oasis Kids & Youth had great attendance and enjoyed times of learning, play and outdoor fun (bouncy castle, and Magic Mountain to name a few). We are grateful for gifted leaders to lead our kids and youth. Thanks to Gloria Trail & Heidi Foster (Oasis Kids) and Robin Burley (Oasis Youth) for giving leadership in this area. Also thanks to their team of volunteers that helped make this happen!
We want to thank Crandall University for hosting Oasis 2012. The facilities were great; the staff were warm and helpful. We look forward to being back in two years!
Special thanks to all those that took part on stage and behind the scenes. Without you and your God given abilities, Oasis would not have been the success it was. We thank God for each of you.
If you’re reading this thinking you should have gone, we’re busy planning for 2013. Oasis 2013 will be August 9-11, 2013 at Acadia University in Wolfville, NS with special speaker Dr. Lennett Anderson. Take note that this is a Friday to Sunday event. We are combining our opening rally with the closing rally of Tidal Impact and expect to have over 2000 in attendance. Exciting!
- Online Oasis Survey – http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/oasis-2012-survey
- CDs/DVDs/Downloadable Audio & Video – please contact Chris at Express Duplication 1-877-435-1100. This is available for anyone.