First News


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Date: Wednesday, September 30, 2020.
Time: 7:00 – 9:00pm

Because of the current restrictions, the AGM will be held via Zoom and so, there are some special arrangements to make sure things run smoothly. Please note carefully the following instructions.

Walkthrough Video (written version below)



  • Please register via this link if you plan to attend.
  • A Zoom meeting link will be sent in the confirmation email after registration.
  • The Zoom meeting link will be sent again in a reminder email on September 28.
  • We need a quorum for this AGM. Everyone is invited to participate, but only members will be able to vote.

Documents to be reviewed and approved during the AGM


Please send your questions regarding any of the documents provided to this email address by September 29, so that we can address them.


Click here to see the 2020 AGM Meeting Agenda 

Pre-meeting time (15 minutes prior)

  • Click on the Zoom link in the confirmation/reminder email to join.
  • You will be directed to a ‘waiting room’.
  • Please make sure that you have your full name displayed on your account. If not, you can rename yourself by clicking on your participant name. This will greatly help the check-in process.
  • Meeting host will do a virtual ‘check-in’ and admit everyone into the main meeting room when the meeting starts.

 Meeting time

  • Please keep your microphone on mute and turn your video camera on for the first 15 minutes of the meeting to help with check-in.
  • Feel free to use the ‘Chat’ function to connect with others but we do ask everyone to refrain from chatting when a presentation is in progress. 


  • Only members are invited to participate in voting.
  • Any person who wishes to participate in the voting must have their own PC, tablet or smartphone. If a husband and wife are sharing a device, only one of them will be able to vote or otherwise participate in the meeting. If multiple members in a household would all like to participate in voting, please join the Zoom meeting on separate devices (PC, tablet or smartphone). The same Zoom meeting link can be used to join.
  • At the appropriate time during the AGM, the host will initiate the poll for voting.
  • The business item will be displayed on the screen and the person asking for the motion will move it and another person will be asked to second it. We will do this by using the ‘raise hand’ function on Zoom. Only members can move and second a motion.
  • Next, a poll will be launched for voting. You will see a poll window pop up on your screen, with the business item in the title. There will be 3 options for selection:
    • ‘Yes’ - in favour of the motion
    • ‘No’ – not in favour of the motion
    • ‘Abstain’ – formally decline to vote either for or against a motion
  • The poll will be active for 1 minute.
  • Once the host ends the poll, the result will be displayed and announced.

*Please do not worry if you have never done this before. We will do a few test runs to make sure everyone is familiar with the voting function

Questions during meeting?

  • We encourage you to review the AGM documents and submit any questions prior to the AGM by September 29 as accepting questions ‘from the floor’ on Zoom will be difficult.
  • To get in the queue for questions during the meeting, go to the chat box and send a private message to Eric Findlay. Search for ~Question from the drop down menu. Type a message and Eric will invite you to ask your questions when it is your turn.
  • You may unmute your microphone then, and ask away.
  • Please do not type your questions in the chat box as it will be hard to monitor.

If you have any questions, please feel free to send an email to .

If you are facing any technical difficulties during the meeting, send a private message to ~Tech Support or email Kurtis Findlay at for support.

 We look forward to seeing you at our AGM! 

First News | September 23, 2020



Almira & Ben Chow

At the beginning of Covid from March through May we baked and cooked more than we have ever done before and cleaned out many areas of our home. In June, Ben had major surgery. During his recovery, our community of believers became God’s steadfast encouragement and strength for us. Psalm 23 was our focus for rest and comfort. Then we really enjoyed spending time with our “bubble” children and grandchildren. We social distanced with our neighbours and friends on our balcony enjoying good conversations along with coffee or picnics with our bible study group and Cambie area group. What a new perspective on social gatherings! In September Almira’s mom died at 101 years old in Hawaii. We couldn’t say aloha in person, but we joyfully celebrated her long life “zooming virtually” with family. In honour of mom our family from California, Colorado, Arkansas, Vancouver and Hawaii ate her favourite food “ice cream”. Then we celebrated our 47th wedding anniversary giving us an opportunity to dress up and dine at a restaurant for the first time since Covid. What a God glorifying time!

John Tsang

During the pandemic, one of the safer activities was cycling and this summer I ended up riding a lot! In July, I completed a 160 kms event. Noah committed to 1000 kms for the month of August in an effort to fundraise for kids with cancer. I accompanied him on many of the rides and we both reached that milestone. For me, cycling is a great relational activity and when I ride alone, I've often used the time to think, reflect, and pray.

Soniya, Asish & Rohan

Summer trip to Oliver, BC’s wine capital
Clocking beach time, walking the Osoyoos Lake Oxbows and Wetland trail, biking the scenic Kettle Valley Railway Trail, picking fruits and vegetables and checking out the animals at orchards and farms and wine tasting at the abundant and scenic wineries were some of the enjoyable things we enjoyed doing at Oliver, BC.

The Powells

This past summer our family took advantage of opportunities to relax at home and enjoy summer with family and friends as well as travelling to some of BC’s nicest locations for quick weekends away. Our summers always include a variety of local and home activities like going to the beach and planting our garden boxes. This year, we enjoyed more time with neighbours and family and built relationships with those we already counted as friends. We made a short trip to Osoyoos where we enjoyed orchards and winery tours as well as the beautiful scenery. We also spent a weekend near Kamloops golfing with family. Our summer was capped off with an annual camping trip to Cultus Lake with three other neighbour families. The theme of our summer was “staying grounded in God’s goodness, enjoying what BC has to offer and strengthening relationships.“

Edna Grenz & Harry Hiller

During the Covid lockdown earlier this year, we stayed close to home like everyone else. But when things started to open up a bit this summer, we decided to explore the Canadian Rockies. We were surprised to learn that because of CoVid and the lack of international tourists, the Chateau Lake Louise was available at greatly reduced prices. The weather was perfect and we came to a new appreciation of God’s handiwork in creation as we celebrated our wedding anniversary there and at Moraine Lake.

We were grateful to be able to see 9 of our 11 grandchildren over the course of these months. The most unusual adventure was visiting with our Seattle family at the US side of Peace Arch Park, unique, in that Canadians can meet US residents there without passing through border security. Little did I know that when I baked a blueberry Kuchen (cake) for our family that morning, that it would also become the wedding cake for two medical doctors - one from Ontario and one from Connecticut, whose brief wedding ceremony we watched from our spot in the park. Before we left the park, we became their “wedding guests” who cheered them on.

We thank God for these gifts that we have been able to experience in spite of the uncertainty of the world around us.

The Klassens

We have certainly enjoyed our family time during the past 6 months - eating supper together every single night has been a glorious gift. We thank the Lord every day for our outdoor space. Our home is tiny but the backyard is enormous and affords us room for a trampoline, a treehouse, a veg garden and thousands of flowers. We share the house and yard with our wonderful neighbours who are like family. Between us there are FIVE boys! There is no end to tree-climbing, tire-swinging, hide-and-seek, mud-puddles, scavenger hunts and obstacle courses. We also share the garden with a family of chickadees, an adorable pair of hummingbirds, thousands of native bees and an added hive of honey bees -- a source of endless fascination and of a considerable amount of honey! 

We are so grateful for our many blessings and for the technology that has allowed us to keep working, teaching and studying.

Community story sharing: If you have a story to share (a memorable event, a newfound hobby, a family recipe etc), please let Angeline know by email!


As Justin puts it, this is our first ever online AGM in FBC's 134 years of history! Most of us might feel a little anxious about this new experience but it is also exciting to 'gather' virtually with all of our church family again after so long! We have put together a simple 'How-to' post to help guide and prepare you for the meeting next week! Please click the link below to read.


FBC Annual General Meeting Invitation
Wednesday, September 30 | 7pm | Zoom

You are warmly invited and encouraged to sit at your computer, laptop, tablet, or phone (NO Driving Required!) and JOIN us! It will be the next best thing to actually seeing your FBC family!

It’s an AGM…. so, yes we need a quorum to do the required business!  Everyone is invited to come and participate, but only members will be able to vote.  

Please RSVP here and the meeting link will be included in your confirmation email.

We will have time to pray and reflect on God’s goodness to us, as well as consider special resolutions concerning our Bylaws (read the special resolutions and briefing note here), hear from the Treasurer regarding the 2019 financial statements, consider the report from the Nominating Committee, including the new slate of candidates and “see” how church in a pandemic thrives in God’s grace to us. 

Please review the 2019 Annual Report, comprised of the 2019 In Review (from the Winter Business Meeting) and the Financial Statements here. You will also find the nominations for the Nominating Committee and Membership Committee including the candidate bios here.

Questions?  Because we are on Zoom, asking and answering questions from the “floor” is more difficult.  Please send your questions regarding any of the documents provided to this email address,   by September 29, so that we can address them.

Looking forward to seeing you!

Bless you all!
Claudia Wakeman

A Message For First Baptist Church As We Enter The New Season

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This is a short kick-off message for the new season at First Baptist Church. As we contemplate the coming year, it appears to be the strangest season in the life of our church that any of us have ever known, not only with the pandemic but also our displacement from our building next summer.

Most of us are very sad that we’re unable to meet all together. I know that I am. But, is it possible that God is at work among us, not less than usual, but more than usual in the circumstances of this pandemic? Is it possible that with our normal comforts - our normal supports - taken away, that there might be opportunities for Jesus to work more powerfully in us and through us than we’ve known in the past?

Perhaps you have heard of Juan Carlos Ortiz? He is an Argentinian pastor, very elderly now, and the author of a famous book, Call to Discipleship. Pastor Ortiz was speaking at a church leaders’ conference in Boston many years ago, and he told the following story.

He said, “I was the pastor of what was known as the fastest growing church in Buenos Aires. And I was pleased to be known as that. We used to have three hundred people and we had grown very quickly to a thousand people.”

“One Sunday morning, I had prepared a message to preach on love. I had prepared it well. I went to the church and the worship service began. And, eventually, the worship leader announced that ‘after the next song Brother Juan Carlos will come and bring us his message’. But as I got up to speak I felt a very strong compulsion that I should not preach my message.”

“I got to the pulpit and I said, ‘My text this morning is: Love one another.’ Then I closed my Bible, went back to my seat and sat down. And there was silence, for about two minutes, which is a long time!”

“The worship leader leaned across and said, ‘Am I supposed to sing another song?’ But I just sat there quietly. Then, after about two minutes, I got up and went back to the pulpit and said, ‘Brothers and sisters, my text this morning is: Love one another.’ Then I went back to my seat and sat down again.”

“My wife was sitting in the balcony that morning. She thought I had finally flipped!”

“I got up a third time and said, ‘Brothers and sisters, my text this morning is: Love one another.’ And I sat down again.”

“Someone in the congregation turned to somebody next to them and said, ‘Is there any way I can love you?’ Someone else turned to another person and asked, ‘Is there some way I can love you?’ And within minutes the whole church was alive with people talking.”

“We had 28 people there that morning who were unemployed. Every single one of them got a job. Single mothers had people offer to spend time with them and help them.” He went on to list one group after another who had their deep needs met directly by others there in the church that morning.

He said, “If I had preached my message on love that morning, they would have shaken my hand at the door and said, ‘Thank you, that was a great message,’ ‘I really enjoyed that,’ but 28 people would have gone home unemployed, and to be absolutely honest, nobody would have cared.”

“The next Sunday morning, I got up and said, ‘Brothers and sisters, my text this morning is the same as last week: Love one another.’ ”

“For three months I never preached a sermon. I just read, ‘Love one another.’”

“Three hundred people left the church.”

“They said, ‘I was employed to preach. Anybody could stand up and say, “Love one another!”’”

“But, although we had grown from three hundred to a thousand, we used to be three hundred unloving Christians and we had just become a thousand unloving Christians. That isn’t growth. That is just getting fat!”

“Those three months transformed our church. People got involved in other people’s lives.”

“After three months, I got up to deliver the message and said, ‘Brothers and sisters the Lord has given me a new text this morning, and the congregation broke out in applause! I said, ‘My text this morning is: Love your neighbour as yourself.’”

“There was silence. Then, after a few moments, someone got up and went out of one door, someone else went out of another door, and before long the whole church was empty. In ten minutes, the parking lot was empty. People had driven home, parked their cars, gone next door and said, ‘I am a neighbour of yours. I’m a Christian. Is there something I can do for you?’”

“It was just before Christmas, the worst time to do it. My wife and two daughters and I went home. We went down our street and we discovered incredible need we didn’t even know existed. We gave away the Christmas presents we’d bought for each other to people on our street.”

“It was the best thing that had happened to our church. We had talked about how to reach our community. We’d had campaigns. We’d tried Evangelism Explosion… but nothing exploded! You know what began to happen after we started this? People would phone us and say, ‘Is that the church that helps people?’”

Friends, Covid-19 has stopped us from singing together, from fellowshipping together, from worshipping together, from meeting in the church building face-to-face; but it cannot stop us – nothing can stop us– from being the church.

Jesus was no less the hope of the world when He was dying, nailed to a cross, unable to preach, unable to heal, unable to deliver, unable to teach His disciples. In fact, it was when Jesus’ body was most broken – most limited – that His love was most powerfully on display.

The church is the body of Christ. Is it possible, when the church seems to be at its most limited, that God is most at work?

With circumstances as they are, there is no such thing as business as usual, even for the church. However hard we try, online services and zoom meetings will never be enough. We have to rely on God. And when the familiar things are gone, and we have to rely more deeply on God, perhaps that allows Him to do more than we have permitted Him to do before, even if we don’t see what He is doing so immediately.

So why don’t we invite Jesus to do all that He wants to do in and through us in the coming weeks and months?

Ask yourself, what does it mean when Jesus says, “Love one another”? What does it mean for me? How might I love others in the church?

Ask yourself, what does it mean when Jesus says, “Love your neighbour”? How might I love others in my neighbourhood, in my school, in my workplace, in my family?

Let us surrender to God our notions of ‘just getting through’ this season, and instead invite the Lord to do more in us in the coming months than we can even imagine.

Let me invite you to take a few moments in silence, as soon as you finish reading this message, to invite the Lord to be powerfully at work in you and in our church in the coming season. If you’re not sure exactly what to pray for, perhaps you might do as I do and use Paul’s prayer for the believers at Ephesus, praying it for others in First Baptist Church.

16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being,17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

(Ephesians 3:16-21)

Grace and peace,

Posted by Anthony Brown

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