Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Dec 2007 Maranatha News (Canada): A Voice for God

http://acicanada.ca/node/255
http://www.maranathanewspaper.com/home.php
Maranatha News, “Uniting Christians Across Canada”
Author Profile: A Voice For God
By Belinda Burston, December 2007 Issue

“Courage” and “conviction” are words that come to mind when thinking of the Rev. Ed Hird. He is a strong voice for God in Canada.

The Rev. Canon Dr. Michael Green, former Advisor for Evangelism to the Archbishops of Canterbury and York, said of Ed Hird’s ministry and award-winning book, Battle for the Soul of Canada, “Churches rot away when good men keep silent.” Keeping silent is not a fault Ed Hird can be accused of.

Battle for the Soul of Canada is a gift for this generation of Canadians. It tells the story of nine Canadian pioneers. The birth of the book was a long process, and was assisted by a fleet of godly men who spoke prophetically into Ed’s life, releasing him to write. Ron Dart, an instructor at the University College of the Fraser Valley, and Dr. Gil Stieglitz, international consultant, and founder of ‘Principles to Live By”, helped him move forward. As well, the prayers of Emile Abadir, the Egyptian prophet, proved helpful, confirming for Ed that he would be writing a book –when it was still a dream.

Writing flows in Ed Hird’s veins. His father was the editor for many years of the Telecom Advisor, and his maternal great-grandmother, Mary McFadden-McLean, a newspaper reporter, interviewed the controversial Canadian Métis leader Louis Riel in November 1885. In the book, among other fascinating stories, is the intriguing account of how Mary disguised herself as a priest to get the interview.

Ed’s call to write began when he tragically lost his voice in 1980 through a condition called Spasmodic Dysphonia, caused by a rare viral throat infection. He took speech therapy and read over 60 books on public speaking and writing. During that period, he was interviewed by the Vancouver Sun about his faith. From that time on, he had a passion to write and speak concisely and clearly.

Ed identifies closely with Timothy, the young leader mentored by the rabbi Saul/Paul of Tarsus. The task of planting new churches across Canada with the Anglican Coalition in Canada has felt daunting, similar to the challenging task Timothy was given in Ephesus. Of some of the battles he has fought, Ed said, “Sometimes the task has been very hard, much harder than I expected. But I would never go back to ‘Egypt’”.

The cost of holding true to convictions has a price. Ed and the congregation of St. Simon’s North Vancouver, BC, were forced to leave their church building when they took a stand for the traditional definition of marriage. For the past three years they have worshipped in a school.

St. Simon’s Church North Vancouver then became part of the global Anglican Church, as distinct from the Anglican Church of Canada. “The African Church in particular is standing for the gospel”, said Ed during an interview on 100 Huntley Street.

Paul’s disciple Timothy was a type of Canada -- shy and insecure – but Rev. Ed Hird believes that the Timothys are going to capture the nation!

Battle for the Soul of Canada can be ordered at http://battleforthesoulofcanada.blogspot.com/

-Belinda Burston rediscovered a passion to write as a result of attending a writers’ conference in the year 2000. Belinda lives in Bond Head, Ontario and is married with two grown children and six grandchildren.


p.s. In order to obtain a copy of the book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada', please send a $18.50 cheque to 'Ed Hird', #1008-555 West 28th Street, North Vancouver, BC V7N 2J7. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Canadian Mindset



http://www.maranathanewspaper.com/home.php
Canadian Mindset
By Johanne Robertson

We're doing ourselves a disservice. We're passing over our own homegrown, God-given talent and prophetic voices, and looking to another country's citizens to educate and entertain our minds, feed our spirits and tell us how to think and feel.

Need proof? Look no further than your local Christian bookstore. There are hundreds of Canadian Christian bookstores in Canada, but the vast majority of the books lining their shelves are not by Canadian Christian authors.


Walk into any Christian bookstore north of the 49th parallel, and you'll see aisle after aisle of books by American writers. Want a book by a well-known, award-winning, Canadian Christian author? Chances are you'll have to order it directly from a supplier, because you probably won't find it stocked in your local Christian bookstore.

It's a deeply-rooted problem. Perhaps those roots begin in the soil of a Canadian identity that's based on a sense of Canadian inferiority; perhaps deep down we still believe all things American are somehow better than all things Canadian. Or maybe it's that David-sized Canadian publishers just don't have the marketing budgets and resources to compete with their Goliath-sized U.S. counterparts. Perhaps we should blame the media, who find it easier to promote the latest, big-name American author or artist with their polished media kits and substantial advertising and public relations budgets, than to support the next potential Canadian bestseller.
But of one thing I am certain: this problem is definitely not the fault of Canadian Christian writers.

Canadian Christian writers are a talented, dedicated and determined bunch. (It's not easy to dissuade people who feel called by God to speak to their nation.) And so, while Canadian readers continue to shell out their money for American books, writers like Keith Clemons, Denyse O'Leary, Margaret Davidson, Marcia Laycock, Angelina Fast Vlaar, Ed Hird, Phil Callaway, Carolyn Arends, NJ Lindquist, Deborah Gyapong, Eric E. Wright, Sheila Wray Gregoire, Paul Boge, Sue Augustine, Paul Beckingham, Donna Carter and Keturah Leonforde continue to pound away at their computer keyboards - expressing with great passion and skill - all they believe God has given them to express. Meanwhile organizations like The Word Guild and InScribe Christian Writers' Fellowship continue to cultivate up-and-coming writers, even as they strive to encourage and promote more experienced writers across the country.

It's time Canadian Christian bookstores and the Canadian media upheld their responsibility to ensure Canadian Christian voices are heard across our nation. Readers of books, periodicals and newspapers alike enjoy and benefit from Canadian content - so I urge Canada's Christian booksellers to make it available to them on-shelf, and promote it through in-store and online promotions. Keep comprehensive lists of Canadian authors at hand; church librarians will thank you for them. (Lists and downloadable Readers' Guides are available at http://www.thewordguild.com/ or http://www.inscribe.org/.)

There are signs of hope on the horizon. Mitchell's bookstore plans to host their first ever "Canadian Authors Day" at all eight Mitchell's locations simultaneously on Wednesday, December 12, 2007, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. and an evening book-signing at their Willowdale location, from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. (For more information visit http://www.maranathanewspaper.com/ Several national ministries are also doing their part to ensure the voices of Canadian authors and artists are heard. I applaud Margaret Gibb, President of Women Alive, for taking such a stand, and purposefully choosing an all-Canadian group of speakers for their Toronto Conference and Expo. Ron Hannah, President of Promise Keepers Canada has also been using Canadian talent to speak to the needs of Canadian men. And Reynold and Kathy Mainse co-hosts of 100 Huntley Street, showcased an all-Canadian roster of musical recording artists at Heaven's Rehearsal in September. Jude Hodgson, Executive Director of MissionFest Toronto has always opened the door of opportunity for Canadian speakers.

God has fired the imaginations and stirred the souls of countless authors, journalists, speakers, recording artists, film and television producers in this country. He's inspired and equipped them with messages for us. They are vibrant, educated, well spoken and committed. They need only the opportunity to be read and heard.

Let's stop doing ourselves a disservice. We have what we need right here in Canada. It's time we were better stewards of the resources God has given us, in our home and native land.


Johanne Robertson is the editor and co-founder of Maranatha News. She can be reached at editor@maranathanewspaper.com




p.s. In order to obtain a copy of the book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada', please send a $18.50 cheque to 'Ed Hird', #1008-555 West 28th Street, North Vancouver, BC V7N 2J7. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Canadian Christianity Newspaper on Canadian Writers & Bookstores

http://www.canadianchristianity.com/nationalupdates/071026writers
Canada's Christian writers, booksellers face tough times
By Frank Stirk

TORONTO-AREA book publisher Larry Willard sees a possible way out for struggling Christian bookstores that have been hurt by lost sales of popular American titles -- such as the Left Behind series, The Prayer of Jabez and The Purpose-Driven Life -- to retail giants like Costco, Wal-Mart and Indigo.

"I think the focus needs to get off American product," he says. "They should be looking at Canadian product. They have an unique product and that's what they should be trying to put out the door."

Markham, Ontario, novelist N. J. Lindquist (Glitter of Diamonds) goes further. The founder in 2002 of The Word Guild, a support network for about 300 Christian writers, she believes something needs to be done to "get bookstores across Canada that are Christian to actually care that Canadian authors are promoted."

"I find it really, really difficult to get my books into the [Christian] stores," she says. "Frankly, I'm selling more in the U.S. than in Canada, and I find it much easier to get into the mainstream than I do into the Christian stores."

But Kevin Lee, proprietor of Sign of the Fish, a small Christian bookstore in North Vancouver, BC, counters that while he will do what he can to promote local authors, the fact remains his profit-margin depends on him offering the products his customers want.

"I don't feel guilty or overly mercenary in doing that," he says. "It has to be operated as a business . . . as a prudent piece of stewardship. You can 'minister' yourself into the ground operating a bookstore, I think, and that's not going to do anybody any good."

"We do in fact actually sell a really good selection of . . . lesser known authors simply to provide an unique kind of selection," says Margo Smith, co-owner of Hull's, a family-run Christian retailer in Winnipeg. "There's a lot of pressure that's been put on us with the taking away of the cream of the crop."

They may differ on how to resolve the problem, but no one who writes, publishes or retails Christian books in Canada denies that their industry faces some serious challenges.

Of the upwards of 700 Christian bookstores across Canada, over half operate as small or very small businesses. But regardless of size, says Smith, "Sales right now are a challenge for all bookstores. . . . There's just so much competition."

Not only are the high-volume stores siphoning off the most high-profile Christian titles and selling them at discounted prices, more and more people are also buying products online. But Lee, who spent most of his career in marketing before buying Sign of the Fish last year, believes these "seismic shifts" are not unique to the Christian marketplace.

"This industry is undergoing the same changes that the book industry at large is undergoing. . . . Good grief! Indigo alone controls more than 50 per cent of the book trade overall in Canada -- and that's a monster astride the country," he says.

Smaller publishers are also being overshadowed by their more powerful American rivals. "Our sales are down this year a good 30 per cent. It's been terrible," says Willard, who owns Castle Quay Books and Bay Ridge Books, which between them publish about a dozen titles a year.

Some Canadian authors, such as Alberta humorist Phil Callaway (Golfing With the Master) and Vancouver Island pastor Mark Buchanan (The Rest of God), have succeeded in getting U.S. companies to publish them. But most writers are far less fortunate.

"It looks to many people that unless you have an American publisher, you can't get a Canadian distributor, and if you can't get a Canadian distributor, you can't get in the bookstores," says North Vancouver Anglican priest and author Ed Hird (Battle for the Soul of Canada). "So basically you're shut out of the market."

For Hird and others, including Lindquist, their only recourse has been to handle their own publishing and distribution. Since last year, Hird has sold (2,100)copies and has managed to get the book into (over 100) bookstores across Canada. It also won him The Word Guild's award this year for best independently published non-fiction book.

"There's a lot of negativity and timidity in Canadian culture around the area of books, and so . . . a lot of people basically tell you why things won't work," he says. "What I've discovered is that it's not easy, but it can work."

"Ed's an example of an author who maybe is doing what you need to do these days, which is getting out there and marketing your book . . . talking to every last retailer in the country," says Lee. "Locally, he was selling them out of his car."

But it is not an experience Hird would like to repeat. "For my next book, I'd rather have an established publisher who was able to run with a lot of it," he says.

Some opt for so-called vanity publishers, who turn manuscripts into finished books. But Lindquist, who has written nine books, does not recommend it. "You don't have quality control and a lot of things can happen," she says.

Even authors who have landed an American publishing deal caution this does not necessarily guarantee fame and fortune. Montreal writer Marg Buchanan's two books (Famous Jerks of the Bible and Parenting with Purpose) were both published in the U.S. -- breakthroughs that she credits ultimately to the sovereignty of God.

"Your manuscript has to land on the right day with the right person in the right mood. . . . It kind of has to be a slow period for the big names and they're looking for something to talk about," she says.

But despite twice getting accepted, Buchanan adds, "I got lost among the giants. The sales reps are not going to necessarily promote my book if the same house has put out a Max Lucado book that month."

In 2004, Buchanan put her book-writing projects on hold, so she could focus on raising her three children. She now works full-time for a Christian charity.

"If anybody thinks you're going to make money writing books, you need to take a long, quiet nap," says Lindquist. "It's not going to happen. Most people are subsidizing their writing either by working or, in my case, my husband has a good job."

Indicative of the challenges facing this community was the disbanding this spring after 39 years of the Christian Booksellers Association Canada. Faced with a declining membership, its board decided it had neither "the time, energy, finances or will to turn this ship around," chair Lando Klassen wrote in a statement to members.

In its place, Lindquist hopes to see a new national group emerge that embraces everyone involved in creating and selling Christian books.

"We all need to be working together," she says, "because really we're on the same team and we're all trying to do, I hope, the same thing, which is to get the books that need to be read into the hands of the people that need to read them."

Smith sees more than a little irony in their current circumstances. "We got into this believing our products were worthwhile and of value in terms of spiritual development," she says. "And now that they're quite widely available, we're in a tough spot."

But for all the challenges and frustrations they face, neither can they overlook what they have going for them. As Buchanan realized, there can be a downside to signing with a big American publisher.

"You really are a small fish in a big sea, whereas in a smaller publishing house, you can be the big fish even if you're just a beginner, because maybe they only print four or five books a year and they can invest a little bit more time in your title," she says.

For Buchanan, the writing can be its own greatest reward. "I learn a lot by putting pen to paper," she says. "The book that I needed to read to change my own life [was the book] that I wrote. It impacted my life going through that process. And so that was a success."

Hird is thankful for The Word Guild. "They have been so helpful. These guys have been through the ropes," he says. "I have learned so much."

As for the booksellers, Smith believes they need to capitalize on what their secular competitors can never offer-a meeting place for people of kindred spirit.

"We really value service in a much deeper sense than others might," she says. "We are one of the few environments in which people of different backgrounds, different denominations, different churches, actually interact."

Lee too has a soft spot for people who come in with their new self-published book. "Even if it's kind of hokey looking and the cover's kind of sideways and I don't like the font, I'll take some and put them on the shelf-because I've been through this," he says. "I understand the gumption that requires."


p.s. In order to obtain a copy of the book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada', please send a $18.50 cheque to 'Ed Hird', #1008-555 West 28th Street, North Vancouver, BC V7N 2J7. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

BC Christian News on the CASJAVA Achievement Award

http://www.canadianchristianity.com/nationalupdates/070927ottawa.html
OttawaWatch: K-John's passion
By Lloyd Mackey
IF THERE is a source of influence for faith-based social conservatives, it could well be found in a law office on West Broadway in Vancouver.

That is where K-John Cheung practices law half of his working day. The other half is spent leading the Canadian Alliance for Social Justice and Family Values Association (CASJAFVA).
Cheung is slight, energetic, friendly and clearly in charge. At CASJAFVA's annual fundraiser banquet this past Sunday night (September 23), he told the restive crowd that if they did not stop talking and listen, there would be no food. He was smiling as he spoke, but the slight edge to his voice showed that if the noise continued, he might just lose his patience. And no one who had plunked down $38 for a ticket to this evening was about to risk giving up on this 12-course dinner.

Edna and I had occasion to attend the gala event, which draws around 1,000 each year to Floata, arguably Canada's largest Chinese restaurant. As it happens, the member of parliament for whom she works as administrative assistant, Maurice Vellacott, was this year's guest speaker. (Previous speakers at this event have included veteran Conservative MPs Art Hanger and Jason Kenney, as well as Stephen Harper, when he was opposition leader.)
Vellacott needed some organizational help in Vancouver, thus Edna's reason to be there. And, in turn, she -- out of her own pocket -- found me a reasonably-priced airline ticket, so I could tag along.

As a result, OttawaWatch readers will get a glimpse, this week, at one example of the social virility of many of the Christian-based Chinese communities in Canada.
* * *
CASJAFVA reflects the activist socially-conservative part of the Chinese community in BC.

The group carefully selects a range of issues on which they can become involved. Their annual fundraiser contributes to the costs of research and advocacy, as they take an issue forward.
The Floata event was, as it was supposed to be, fun. After all, not only the Lord, but the leaders of advocacy groups, love cheerful givers. The more cheer, the better the dollars roll in.

But there were three points in the evening when a serious message was being communicated.
The first was what the theme speaker communicated. Vellacott delivered an inspirational, non-controversial homily -- a personal witness, if you like -- about his upbringing, preparation for service and the influences that these factors had on the way in which he functions as a member of parliament. He drew on his parents' influence, his own faith journey, his education (he has an earned doctorate in ministry from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School), the growth and development of his own family and his experience both as a pastor and a community health board member in Saskatoon(...)

At the same time, however, he was prepared to recognize the achievements of other groups and encourage them to keep working away at their goals.


The recipients of the CASJAFVA 2007 achievement award were Dr. Vellacott, Tristan Emmanuel (a Christian polemicist who leads Equipping Christians for the Public Square) and Edward Hird, an award-winning author and Anglican priest who has been active in the struggle against the use of same-sex blessings in that communion.
* * *
Lloyd Mackey is a member of the Canadian Parliamentary Press Gallery in Ottawa and author of Stephen Harper: The Case for Collaborative Governance (ECW Press, 2006). He can be reached at lmackey@canadianchristianity.com.
September 27/2007


p.s. In order to obtain a copy of the book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada', please send a $18.50 cheque to 'Ed Hird', #1008-555 West 28th Street, North Vancouver, BC V7N 2J7. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Achievement Award for The Battle for the Soul of Canada

Dear Colleagues,

On Sept 23rd Sunday night I received an 'Achievement Award 2007' for my book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada' http://battleforthesoulofcanada.blogspot.com/ and for our ACiC/St. Simon's NV biblical stand from 'The Canadian Alliance for Social Justice and Family Values Association' http://www.canadianalliance.org/pdf/71.pdf .

In receiving the plaque, I was given an opportunity to address the 1,000-strong crowd at the annual CASJFVA Chinese Food dinner in historic Vancouver China town. CASJFVA http://www.canadianalliance.org/ is led by the well-known Christian lawyer, K-John Cheung.

The large percentage of the 80 tables present were Chinese people. The entire evening was bilingual, in both Cantonese and English. Chinese people generally have a very strong commitment to family values and the traditional definition of marriage.

It was a great opportunity to share about the values of the Anglican Coalition in Canada http://www.acicanada.ca/ with our Chinese Canadian community.

Sincerely, Ed Hird+


p.s. In order to obtain a copy of the book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada', please send a $18.50 cheque to 'Ed Hird', #1008-555 West 28th Street, North Vancouver, BC V7N 2J7. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Abbotsford News: Hird's words garner non-fiction award




Hird’s words garner non-fiction award

JOHN MORROW / The Abbotsford News
Rev. Ed Hird won the Word Guild Award for non-fiction in mid-June for his book Battle for the Soul of Canada. The priest began writing in the 1980s, through a spiritual column for The Abbotsford, Sumas and Matsqui News.


By KRISTINE THIESSEN
Abbotsford News
Jul 12 2007


Rev. Ed Hird’s book has a lot to say about Canada’s younger generations: They have developed an anti-marriage culture where they wed later and have difficulty staying married. They lack a vision for the future of Canada. They must not be ashamed of our Christian heritage.


Hird combined his concern with Canadian youth culture, the conviction of his faith, personal stories, and his passion for Canadian history in Battle for the Soul of Canada: Raising Up the Emerging Generation of Leaders.


In mid-June, the book won the Word Guild Award for non-fiction.


Hird says he sees a lot of Canadians struggling from discouragement and insecurity, and hopes his book helps people “grab their future.”


“Particularly, my hope is to encourage the emerging generation of leaders,” he says. “A lot of younger people have felt kind of stuck, and I want to help them move forward.”


In Battle for the Soul of Canada, Hird points to famous historical figures who shaped Canada, such as Captain George Vancouver and Louis Riel, to highlight character traits he hopes will be embodied by Canadian youth.


“May we, too, as Canadian pioneers, discover the passion of Louis Riel for our Savior Jesus Christ,” Hird writes.


He does not shy from serious, controversial issues such as sexual and physical abuse, and strengthening traditional marriages.


Five years ago, the issue of homosexual relationships led the priest to instigate a break-away faction of the Anglican Church, called the Anglican Coalition in Canada.


The ACIC split – or, “moved sideways,” says Hird – from the Anglican diocese of New Westminster when the church sanctioned the blessing of same-sex relationships.


Today, Hird and the ACiC serve under the Archbishop of Rwanda, Emmanuel Kolini.


But for all the passion and conviction involved in directing a break-away faction and writing a novel to inspire youth, Hird is soft-spoken and composed.


The 52-year-old has been a priest for 27 years now, and amid all the personal developments, he has spent the last 16 years preaching and writing on the North Shore.


However, it was in Abbotsford that the beginning of his writing career began, when from 1982 to 1987 he was an assistant priest at St. Matthew’s Church.


At the time, a few pastors and priests took turns writing a spiritual column for The Abbotsford, Sumas and Matsqui News, as The Abbotsford News was then titled.


He recalls one column in which he discussed teen suicide. A teenage girl read his column shortly after a suicide attempt, and reached out to him to talk.


“I had so much response to [the columns],” says Hird.


He continued to write for the Deep Cover Crier and North Shore News, but four years ago he began to seriously toy with the idea of writing a book.


“I went up to Mount Sumas, hung out there, and prayed,” says Hird. “I sought the Lord for direction.”


The book found its niche among others written from a Christian framework, and was recognized on June 13 at the Word Guild, a group of Christian Canadian writers and editors.


“I try to do this instinctively and reflectively,” says Hird. “I’ve been told I have several more books inside of me.”


p.s. In order to obtain a copy of the book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada', please send a $18.50 cheque to 'Ed Hird', #1008-555 West 28th Street, North Vancouver, BC V7N 2J7. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Christian Writers Honoured

http://www.nsnews.com/

http://acicanada.ca/node/169

-an article for the North Shore News ‘Spiritually Speaking’ column


Friday July 13th 2007, p. 50

The Word Guild Writing Awards



Christian Writers Honoured


-BC Entries to contest more than doubled



By the Rev. Ed Hird+

I was recently privileged to attend a black-tie affair at The Word Guild Writing Awards Gala at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario. The Awards Gala was hosted by Christine Williams, the producer and host of On The Line on CTS TV; and by Rick Gamble, formerly a reporter at CTV's Kitchener affiliate CKCO, now a communications instructor at Wilfrid Laurier University. Rudy Wiebe, one of Canada's most famous authors, was awarded the Leslie K. Tarr Award for outstanding career contribution to Christian writing and editing in Canada. Wiebe, 72, of Russian Mennonite heritage, is a twice-time winner of the Governor General's Literary Awards for his novels “The Temptations of Big Bear” and “A Discovery of Strangers”. Wiebe’s latest book Of This Earth: A Mennonite Boyhood in the Boreal Forest (Knopf Canada) recently won the $25,000 Charles Taylor Prize for Literary Non-Fiction.

Wiebe admitted that he was surprised to be chosen for the Tarr award because he is better known in the secular market than in Christian circles. "I write realistic stories about people in tough situations who have problems and conflicts that are not easily resolved—not romances where everything ends nicely, " he explained in an interview. "But I think the Christian faith is pretty useless if it can't face the realistic things that happen to us in the world." Wiebe feels called to be a radical Jesus-follower in all that he does and writes. As he read to us in the plenary sessions from his eight novels, his Christ-centered passion for peace and reconciliation came strongly through.

There are now 270 writers with The Word Guild, a national organization of writers and editors who are Christians. I was privileged to join this year in the professional writer category, since the publishing of my new book ‘Battle for the Soul of Canada’. The Word Guild Awards honoured the most outstanding work published during 2006 in 31 categories of nonfiction books, novels, articles, columns, poems and song lyrics. A total of 53 awards were presented, to both winners (who received cash prizes) and to award of merit recipients, whose marks were close to those of the first-prize winners and who received certificates.

Best-selling Vancouver Island author and pastor Mark Buchanan won the Christian living category for the fourth time with his fourth book, for The Rest of God: Restoring Your Soul by Restoring Sabbath (Thomas Nelson). The Rev Dr. J. I. Packer of Regent College, Vancouver, received an award of merit for co-authoring Praying: Finding our Way Through Duty to Delight (InterVarsity Press). In the same hotly contested category, medical specialist Dr. Brad Burke of Windsor, Ont., received awards of merit for three books in his series An MD Examines, titled Is God Obsolete?, Does God Still Do Miracles?, and Why Does God Allow Suffering? (Cook).

BC authors have never done better than at the past Award Gala. The number of entries more than doubled in the past three years in The Word Guild contest, which is open to any Canadian citizen or permanent resident who affirms The Apostles' Creed. A total of 231 entries were received. I myself was privileged to win top prize for independently published nonfiction book for Battle for the Soul of Canada: Raising Up the Emerging Generation of Leaders. I am so grateful to the North Shore News for all the encouragement they have given me in getting the word out about this North Shore-based book. I am also most grateful to Kevin Lee of Sign of the Fish bookstore and Indigo North Vancouver for supporting me through their book-signing event. So far I have sold over 1,400 books in around 55 bookstores across Canada.


The Reverend Ed Hird+
Rector, St. Simon’s Church North Vancouver, BC
Anglican Coalition in Canada
http://www3.telus.net/st_simons


p.s. In order to obtain a copy of the book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada', please send a $18.50 cheque to 'Ed Hird', #1008-555 West 28th Street, North Vancouver, BC V7N 2J7. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Battle Wins National Book Award

http://www.nsnews.com/

by Joanna Habdank, jhabdank@nsnews.com
North Shore News


On June 13th, Rev. Ed Hird from North Vancouver was recognized in Ontario by his peers for his recent book "Battle for the Soul of Canada".



That day he won The Word Guild award for an independently published non-fiction book. The guild is an association of Canadian writers and editors who are Christian. According to Hird, there were 231 applicants for a number of key awards, so naturally he is pleased with this feat.



"I really feel privileged and honoured to have been chosen and I'm very thankful to the national organization The Word Guild," says Hird.



"I'm also thankful for the people on the North Shore," he adds, explaining that some of those articles and chapters were previously written on the North Shore. Hird has been a regular contributor to the North Shore News' "Spiritually Speaking" section and for a smaller publication (The Deep Cove Crier) distributed in Deep Cove.



Currently Hird is Rector at St. Simon's Church North Vancouver, part of the Anglican Coalition in Canada. Ordained in 1980, he's been on the North Shore since 1987, and has at one point served as the National Chairman for the Anglican Renewal Ministries of Canada.



Hird says he wrote the book because it was simply inside of him and because he was encouraged by friends to put his thoughts in this volume. "The first 5,000 words were quite painful," he recalls. "Then it really started to flow. At one point, about a year and a half ago, I wrote for about 24 hours without stopping."



Battle for the Soul of Canada, Raising up the Emerging Generation of Leaders works on several levels, says Hird, explaining that his primary target audience is spiritual seekers.



His secondary focus is providing a guide to 'raising up Timothys' or leaders of tomorrow, based on the devotional commentary on letters of 1st and 2nd Timothy in the New Testament. "Drawing on First and Second Timothy in the Bible, I would say they are the most practical leadership manuals ever written in history. I drew on the wisdom of the two books as the framework and model for our generations," says Hird.



The passages are intended to guide Generation X and Y on how they can come into their own destiny, potential and purpose, he explains.



A third feature is born out of Hird's passion for Canadian history. One of the common themes is looking at people in the Canadian past and looking at them as metaphors for the future, says Hird. He includes the stories of (thirteen) Canadians, such as Louis Riel, Simon Fraser, and Sir Alexander Mackenzie.



So far, more than 1,400 copies of the book have been sold, says Hird, and it's now gone into its second printing. He's also been on five national TV programs, and BC Christian News has asked him to write an article about the award-winning writer Rudy Wiebe.



He stresses tha the message is directed towards both Anglicans and people of different faith.



"Whether people are Christian, Jewish or Muslim, they all believe in what we call Judeo-Christian values, like the Ten Commandments...and I believe that Canada's legal system...and its education and political system were profoundly shaped by interaction with Judeo-Christian values."



Therefore, in the book, he looks at people who would symbolize our heritage, and how society can reclaim it in terms of shaping the future, and in giving hope for the future, says Hird.



For more information, visit http://www3.telus.net/st_simons or http://www.battleforthesoulofcanada.blogspot.com/



Battle for the Soul of Canada is available at Indigo Books and at Sign of the Fish bookshop in North Vancouver.

p.s. In order to obtain a copy of the book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada', please send a $18.50 cheque to 'Ed Hird', #1008-555 West 28th Street, North Vancouver, BC V7N 2J7. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Battle 'Hard to Classify': Hird (Peace Arch News, White Rock)

http://www.peacearchnews.com/portals-code/list.cgi?paper=44&cat=47&id=1022101&more=0

Battle "hard to classify" : Hird

Daniel Pi photo
Rev. Ed Hird is a self-confessed history buff. His book, Battle for the Soul of Canada, combines his two passions: history and the Bible. He describes it as "a bold experiment... that worked."
By Alex BrowneArts Reporter
Jul 08 2007


Memoir an analysis of the need for faith
Battle "hard to classify": Hird
It's a book rooted in biblical teaching - but also in Canadian history. It's a personal memoir that also happens to be a challenging analysis of the need for faith.


Rev. Ed Hird, Rector of St. Simon's Church, North Vancouver, acknowledges his book is hard to classify.

"It's a bold experiment," he said.
The miracle is that it worked: “ it kind of clustered together."



The key to the book is in its subtitle: Raising Up the Emerging Generation of Leaders. For Hird, a member of the Anglican Coalition in Canada, believes both the nation and the church is ready for spiritual leadership after decades of travelling well-intentioned detours.


But his model of a leader is not an expected one. Drawing on quotations from Timothy 1 and 2, Hird links St. Paul's protege and right-hand man, a shy yet unwavering Christian, with distinctly Canadian qualities.


"In many ways Timothy has the personality profile of Canada," he writes.
"Gentle, somewhat insecure, and easily rejected. Yet Paul saw that this unlikely individual had the potential to be a great leader, even to be the successor after Paul's assassination."


In his book Hird, also past-president and national chaplain of Alpha Canada, stresses the need to find the present day Timothys amongst us "not necessarily people of obvious and dominant leadership qualities, but those with a quiet potential to lead."
"Without a vision, as the Bible says, people perish," he said.


A self-confessed history buff, he also peppers his analysis with stories of both well and lesser-known Canadians of the past.


The book is available locally at Angel Christian Supplies, but the author also has strong Peninsula connections.


"I spend my weekends and holidays here - about 95 per cent of my family lives here now," he said. "My parents live here, my in-laws live here, my younger sister and her husband and their five children live here."


In addition, he and his wife Janice also lead the annual B.C. Christian Ashram Retreat, formerly at Camp Kwomais, which has now moved venue to Camp Alexandra.


Hird acknowledges the seeds "and the literal starting point" of the book were in the schism in the Anglican Church over the last half decade, manifest in the homosexual marriage debate.
The effect was pronounced in the case of his own congregation. Because it hewed to traditional definitions of marriage, St. Simon's found itself evicted by its diocese from the church building and property, and ended up finding a new home.


"Basically the Anglican Church has gone through some identity challenges," he said. "The homosexual issue was not central, it was symptomatic."


But Hird's intention in the book, he said, was not to surrender to 'unforgiveness' and bitterness, but to find a way forward out of catastrophe, by using the example of Timothy.
"Anglicans are looking for hope, and Canadians are, in general,"he said.


“Statistics show that Canadians are as spiritual today as they were 40 years ago. But it's gone into the realm of privacy. Most Canadians won't talk about spirituality in front of strangers, but they will if they're comfortable.


"Spirituality has a way of surviving through all things."

p.s. In order to obtain a copy of the book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada', please send a $18.50 cheque to 'Ed Hird', #1008-555 West 28th Street, North Vancouver, BC V7N 2J7. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.

Saturday, July 7, 2007

It's Never Too Late to Write Your Own Book

http://www.highertrustmarketing.com/blog/?p=409
Infoproduct Marketing Insiders by Jeff Smith
July 7, 2007
Author Profile - It's Never Too Late To Write Your Own Book

For most people, writing your own book is not an immediate priority - first get through school, then get a "Real" job, get married, raise a family, settle down a little - it's only after catching your breath and middle age begin to rear it's ugly head do most aspiring writers think about actually experiencing the dream of writing their own book.

That's the case with Ed Hird outlined in a profile of his new book "Battle For the Soul of Canada: Raising Up The Emerging Generation of Leaders"
where he finally put pen to paper at the ripe old age of 50.

Based on his life experiences as a pastor helping youth in many difficult situations, and a self-ackknowledged history buff, Hird felt he had a message that needed to be heard about what made past leaders great and how those principles could be applied to today's Generation X population.

Here are some lessons those of you who are considering writing your own book can take from Ed's newest book venture:

1. Don't give up on your dreams. At 50 who would have thought you could become a successful first-time author?

2. Use the formula Hird used to dream up ideas for writing your own book. For example, understand how your experiences can be combined with some research to write on a topic that is outside of your comfort zone. In this case, Hird saw evidence of a "lost" generation, but didn't necessarily know what the answer was. So - he researched some of the greatest leaders in history and came up with his recommended solution.

3. Make the solution you offer your readers yours. Even though Hird researched what made past leaders successful - his summary of these principles and application to today's audience makes his solution his own, something he can now turn into a franchise by developing further information products, speaking, recording videos, running seminars, offering consulting and so on(...)

p.s. In order to obtain a copy of the book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada', please send a $18.50 cheque to 'Ed Hird', #1008-555 West 28th Street, North Vancouver, BC V7N 2J7. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.

Friday, July 6, 2007

How to Raise Up a Generation of Leaders (Richmond News)

http://www.richmond-news.com/issues07/071207/islandlife.html

Ed Hird, a pastor who assists with the English service at Richmond Emmanuel Church, is the author of Battle for the Soul of Canada: Raising Up the Emerging Generation of Leaders. Technically, the book took Hird two and a half years to write, but in reality it is the culmination of 25 years of working with youth through the church and other institutions, such as Burnaby's New Haven Correctional Centre. In the book, Hird tells the stories of remarkable Canadian pioneers with the hope of inspiring today's youth take up the leadership torch.

Brett Beadle/Richmond News
How to raise a generation of leaders
By Michelle Hopkins


Ed Hird believes he knows the key to raising leaders.


He has written a book titled Battle for the Soul of Canada: Raising Up the Emerging Generation of Leaders, in which he proposes that the answers lie in our past.


"If you look at our history and the great leaders that helped shape this nation of ours, they all had a couple of things in common; they all shared similar values, not necessarily religious values, and perseverance," says Hird.


Drawing on nearly three decades of religious work in such places as Burnaby's New Haven Correctional Centre (where he was a social worker dealing with troubled youth), Woodlands School (a residential school for mentally and physically disabled people) and the Downtown Eastside, Hird outlines a spiritual path we can embark on to raise the thinkers and the movers of tomorrow.


Although the book is written with a religious undertone - every chapter starts out with a biblical passage by Timothy (In the bible the Apostle Paul wrote to Timothy, a young pastor, to encourage him in his church work) - Hird says one doesn't have to be religious to get the gist of what he is trying to convey.


"I don't preach in the book. You don't have to attend church to read my book, it's written for those who are hungry for a purpose in life," explains Hird. "I tell the story of nine key Canadian pioneers who have impacted and shaped our country. Their stories, I believe, can inspire and drive our young people to build better futures."


Hird unlocks snippets of wisdom from Canada's heroes such as Frederick Seymour - the forgotten first governor of the United British Columbia colony. The scenic Mount Seymour in the North Shore is named after him. He is credited with establishing the B.C. public school system, improving the courts, drawing up public health regulations, setting standards for mining and reducing the provincial debt. (Governor from 1864-1869).


Hird also devotes a chapter on explorer and trader Alexander Mackenzie, who crossed North America by land in 1793.
"He had bull-dog persistence, inexhaustible energy and insatiable curiosity," adds Hird.
By telling their inspirational stories, Hird strongly believes our young people will be moved to act and live according to their talents.


The author believes one of the impediments to this happening is that the generation Xers suffer from an identity crisis caused by living in the shadow of the affluent baby boomers.


"We need to invest in our youth and promote them," explains Hird. "We need to walk hand-in-hand with the generation X and the millennial generation (born between 1977 and 1994).... We need to root for them, cheer for them and money won't do it, we need to invest time.
"We need to tell our young people that pioneers had it tough and they need to know it's not easy in life, but that they can make it."


The 52-year-old father of three grown sons took nearly three years to research and write the book.
"In the strictest sense of the word it took me about two-and-a-half years, but in the broader sense it's been in the making for 25 years."


Hird is no stranger to writing - he has penned more than 250 articles for a number of different publications, including theNews' sister paper the North Shore News.


His talent for writing is in his genes, says Hird.
"My great-grandmother, Mary Mclean, was the first Canadian female reporter with the Regina Leader."
In his chapter on The Passion of Louis Riel - a Metis leader who was hanged for treason for his resistance against the Canadian government - he tells of how his great-grandmother disguised herself as a Catholic priest in order to interview Riel in jail.


"I have her passion for writing and her determination to tell a good story," Hird says. He adds that turning 50 was a defining moment for him because hitting that milestone propelled him to put pen to paper.


"It's part of us baby boomers' transition, our destiny to try new things,' explains Hird, who won The Word Guild Canadian Writing Awards 2007.


Another reason for the book is to make sure Canada's greatest leaders are not forgotten. Hird, who was ordained as a pastor in 1980, feels strongly that we Canadians "live in the shadow of the United States and our story needs to be told."


"Canada has a great history, our great leaders and explorers can inspire us and they are a symbol of our great nation," says Hird.


Hird is a walking encyclopedia of Canadiana facts. He is fascinated by our rich past.


"Did you know our first newspaper and hospital in B.C. were francophone?" questions the self-professed history buff.


Interspersed with interesting vignettes and his own spiritual thoughts, Hird takes his readers on a literary journey through our history.


Battle for the Soul of Canada: Raising Up the Emerging Generation of Leaders is available at Richmond's Seraphim Christian Bookstore.
published on 07/06/2007


p.s. In order to obtain a copy of the book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada', please send a $18.50 cheque to 'Ed Hird', #1008-555 West 28th Street, North Vancouver, BC V7N 2J7. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Rudy Wiebe at Write! Canada




Dear friends in Christ,

I commend to you an article in CanadianChristianity.com about Rudy Wiebe, the award-winning, best-selling author and keynote speaker at Write! Canada:



http://www.canadianchristianity.com/
Comment: Wiebe inspires at Write! Canada
By Ed Hird
RUDY WIEBE is a man of peace and a man of memory. This was evident from his presentation as keynote speaker at the Write! Canada conference. It was also evident from personal encounters with the man.

Speaking at the event, held June 14 - 16 at the Guelph Bible Conference Centre in Ontario, Wiebe commented that his writing career was radically altered when his professor, F.M. Salter, challenged him to write from his own experience(...)





Blessings, Ed Hird+


p.s. In order to obtain a copy of the book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada', please send a $18.50 cheque to 'Ed Hird', #1008-555 West 28th Street, North Vancouver, BC V7N 2J7. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.

Greetings from Ontario

http://www3.telus.net/st_simons
an article published in the July 2007 Deep Cove Crier
Greetings from Ontario
By the Rev Ed Hird+

I have always loved books. Most pictures taken of me as a child showed me reading books. I even read books at hockey games, at least during the intermission.

Recently I attended “Write! Canada”, a four-day national writer’s conference in Guelph, Ontario. Rubbing shoulders with 225 other authors, editors, and publishers reminded me that I truly am a bibliophile (book-lover) from a long line of bibliophiles. My father read so many books as a young person that his public library put a restriction on how many books that he could take out per day. All columnists and reporters have a love for words, including my great-grandmother Mary McFadden McLean who disguised herself as a Roman Catholic priest in order to interview Louis Riel. Her Regina Leader-Post Editor told her: “An interview must be had with Riel if you have to outwit the whole police force of the North-west.” Riel said to my great-grandmother on Nov 19th 1885: “When I first saw you at the trial, I loved you.”

Rudy Wiebe, the plenary speaker at The “Write! Canada” conference, reminded me that it is important to share one’s story and one’s experience. It is also important to do this in a way that builds others up. As the proverb says, it is better to light a candle than curse the darkness.

Because of my new book ‘Battle for the Soul of Canada’ and my writing for the Deep Cove Crier and the North Shore News for many years, I accumulated enough ‘points’ this year to be accepted as a professional writer in the national writers’ organization, The Word Guild http://www.thewordguild.com/ . The 280-strong Word Guild, which sponsors the annual “Write! Canada” conference, has a mandate of connecting, developing and promoting Canadian writers and editors who are Christian. Writers from beginner to professional level were able to sharpen their skills through top-notch instructors. The conference also offered networking and marketing opportunities, appointments with literary agents and editors, manuscript critique services, open-mike reading sessions and a gymnasium-sized bookstore well stocked with reference materials

The long-term vision of The Word Guild is to connect with Canadian culture through writing from a Christian worldview. Its immediate goals are to help writers and editors at all stages interact with each other, develop new skills and discover new publishing opportunities. Many writers and editors struggle with isolation—many often work alone, sometimes from their homes, and do not have the opportunity to interact with their peers very often. The Word Guild also offers prayer support through a dedicated group of people praying for The Word Guild, and the writing-related needs and requests of its members. I was very impressed to discover that The Word Guild offers critique groups, a mentoring program and national and regional conferences, designed to encourage excellence in our craft.

The high point of The Word Guild year is the black-tie Award Gala held this year at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, right before the ‘Write! Canada’ conference. It was hosted by Christine Williams, the producer and host of On the Line on CTS TV; and by Rick Gamble, formerly a reporter at CTV's Kitchener affiliate CKCO, now a communications instructor at Wilfrid Laurier University.

At the event honouring work published by Canadian writers who are Christian, winners ranged from well-known, venerable theologians Dr. J. I. Packer and James M. Houston, to 14-year-old Richard Weening, the youngest-ever winner. Entries were judged according to excellence of writing; impact (the inspirational or informational value making it worthwhile); fulfillment of stated purpose; suitability to target audience; originality and freshness of style. The number of entries more than doubled in the past three years in The Word Guild contest, which is open to any Canadian citizen or permanent resident who affirms The Apostles' Creed. A total of 231 entries were received.

Rudy Wiebe, one of Canada's most acclaimed authors with eight novels to his credit, was given the Leslie K. Tarr Award for outstanding career contribution to Christian writing and editing in Canada. Wiebe, 72, of Russian Mennonite background, is widely published internationally and has twice won Governor General's Literary Awards for his novels.

The Tarr Award capped numerous honours for Wiebe in 2007. His memoir, Of This Earth: A Mennonite Boyhood in the Boreal Forest (Knopf Canada), won the $25,000 Charles Taylor Prize for Literary Non-Fiction.

Wiebe admitted that he was surprised to be chosen for the Tarr award because he writes for large secular publishers and is better known within literary fiction circles than in Christian circles.

"I write realistic stories about people in tough situations who have problems and conflicts that are not easily resolved—not romances where everything ends nicely,” he explained in an interview.

The Vancouver Island author Mark Buchanan won the Christian living category for the fourth time with his fourth book, for The Rest of God: Restoring Your Soul by Restoring Sabbath (Thomas Nelson). I was short listed as a finalist in three categories, and was pleased to receive top prize in the category of best independently published nonfiction book. So far ‘Battle for the Soul of Canada’ has sold over 1,300 copies, with another 5,100 just out in a second printing.

I would like to personally thank our Deep Cove Crier publisher Bruce Coney for believing in me over the past two decades. His encouragement has helped me keep writing and growing through the challenges of life. I would also like to thank the thousands of Deep Cove Crier readers who have faithfully read my column, and often said kind words to me when I meet them at Parkgate Shopping Centre, or down in the Cove. Perhaps one-third of my book ‘Battle for the Soul of Canada’ was previously published in my Deep Cove Crier articles. Your support and prayers for me have been a big part in the birthing of this award-winning book. Please continue to pray for me, as I have been told that there are other books inside of me waiting to be birthed.

The Reverend Ed Hird+
Rector, St. Simon’s Church North Vancouver, BC
Anglican Coalition in Canada
http://www3.telus.net/st_simons

p.s. In order to obtain a copy of the book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada', please send a $18.50 cheque to 'Ed Hird', #1008-555 West 28th Street, North Vancouver, BC V7N 2J7. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.

Saturday, June 2, 2007

As Sick as Our Secrets

As Sick as Our Secrets
-a Chapter from 'The Battle for the Soul of Canada', pre-published in the North Shore News
http://nsnews.com/
http://www3.telus.net/st_simons/nsnews028.html
http://twgauthors.blogspot.com/2007/06/as-sick-as-our-secrets.html
As Sick as Our Secrets (2 Timothy 4:3-4)

There's an oft-heard saying in the recovery community: “We're as sick as our secrets.”Over the years, I have met many people in abusive situations who have paid a great price to eventually extricate themselves from the vicious cycle of manipulation and recrimination. Only the truth, however painful, can really set us free.
Secrecy keeps us chained to our abusers.At the heart of the ‘twelve steps’,[ii] in Step Four and Five, is the willingness to break the power of secrecy by admitting to God, yourself, and another person the exact nature of how you have wronged other people.
I have done many ‘Fifth Steps’ for others over the past twenty-four years. It is always such a privilege. I feel like I grow so much through this opportunity. I notice, however, that ‘Fifth Steps’ are very difficult in our secretive, victim-based culture. Many people want to come to me and admit the exact nature of how they have been wronged, but not how they have wronged other people.
Until we can open up and get such things off our chest, we are still stuck with guilt, recrimination, and self-doubt. We really are as sick as our secrets.The Bible tells us:Cast our cares upon the Lord, for He cares for us. (1 Peter 5:7)
I have found that sharing deeply my heart with another caring, listening person can be profoundly liberating. That is why we are encouraged by James, Jesus’ brother:confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. (James 5:16)
I have a number of friends who have recently had the courage to go see Bonnie Chatwin, a North Shore Pastoral & Clinical Counselor.[iii] It was not at all easy for them to do this, but I was amazed by the breakthroughs that they have achieved. How much do we want to be well? Often the price of being well is giving up our obsessive need for independence and secrecy, and beginning to trust another person with our life story.
We as Canadians live in a culture that has become more secretive and private. The vast majority of Canadians still believe in God, prayer, and Jesus’ resurrection, but such faith concerns have largely gone into the closet. There is a widespread perception that faith is so personal and private that it cannot be mentioned publicly.
The recent Da Vinci Code fad fits totally into that way of thinking. It implicitly teaches that true spirituality is about dark hidden secrets that only the elite may know about: secrets allegedly hidden in Da Vinci’s paintings, secrets covered by an alleged secret society named the Priory of Sion, secrets about Mary Magdalene and Mother Eve in the Garden of Eden. Over one hundred million North Americans have either read the Da Vinci Code book or seen the movie.
There is something in us that is drawn to secret knowledge and secret passageways. But is secrecy really the way to health and life? Is secrecy really the key to genuine spirituality?Paul taught Timothy in 2 Timothy 4:3-4:The time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths."
The false elders that Timothy was replacing in Ephesus had been drawn back into the secret, occult ways of the Temple of Diana/Artemis (1 Timothy 1:3-4). People are sometimes shocked by the word ‘occult’, but all it means, according to the Concise Oxford Dictionary[iv], is ‘concealed, kept secret’. ‘Occult’ comes from the Latin root ‘celare’ (to hide).
The most famous person in the world once said:I have spoken openly to the world...I said nothing in secret. (John 18:20)Jesus also said: Whatever is hidden is meant to be disclosed, and whatever is concealed or secret is meant to be brought out into the open. (Matthew 4:22)
Rabbi Saul/Paul, who was Jesus’ most famous disciple, commented:We have renounced secret and shameful ways; we do not use deception, nor do we distort the word of God. On the contrary, we set forth the truth plainly...(2 Corinthians 4:2)Contrary to the claims of the Da Vinci Code, Christianity has no secret codes, no secret initiation rites, no secret vows. Jesus said nothing in secret. Jesus brought everything out in the open.
We really are as sick as our secrets. As we battle for the soul of our nation, may God bring us out of the hidden darkness and into his visible light.

The Rev. Ed Hird
Rector, St. Simon’s Church North Vancouver
Anglican Coalition in Canada
[iii] Bonnie Chatwin Counselling and Consultation, http://www.bc-cc.ca


p.s. In order to obtain a copy of the book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada', please send a $18.50 cheque to 'Ed Hird', #1008-555 West 28th Street, North Vancouver, BC V7N 2J7. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

... Goes Before A Fall

...Goes Before A Fall
-a pre-published chapter from the book "Battle for the Soul of Canada"
http://twgauthors.blogspot.com/2007/05/goes-before-fall_24.html
http://www3.telus.net/st_simons/cr0607.html
The Deep Cove Crier Newspaper
...Goes Before a Fall (2 Timothy 3:1-9)


What goes before a fall? The Good Book says ‘Pride’.Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall. (Proverbs 16:18)What is pride, anyway? The Concise Oxford Dictionary defines pride as: ‘overweening opinion of one’s own qualities, merits’ and ‘proud’ as ‘haughty, arrogant’.


Roget’s Thesaurus speaks of the double-edged nature of pride. Many people use the term to refer to satisfaction in their children’s accomplishments, or to self-respect. But Roget’s Thesaurus reminds that pride is also connected to:arrogance, haughtiness, insolence, loftiness, lordliness, overbearingness, presumption, superiority, narcissism, vanity, egotism.

Hence we see the origin of the 1960’s slang phrase “ego trip”.


Paul warned Timothy three times to watch out for the proud and arrogant false teachers in his midst. In 1 Timothy 6:3, Paul commented:If anyone teaches false doctrines and does not agree to the sound instruction of our Lord Jesus Christ and to godly teaching, he is conceited/proud and understands nothing.The Greek word for pride (tuphoo) has the root concept of ‘smoke’, almost like our modern concept of the ‘smoke and mirrors’ used by spin-doctors.


Again in 2 Timothy 3:1-2, Paul said:But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive...The danger of pride is why Paul cautions against ordaining new believers, lest they come under the devil’s condemnation through unteachability. (1 Timothy 3:6)

Why is pride spoken of as the first of the seven deadly sins? Perhaps because pride causes us to forget our Maker:Your heart will become proud and you will forget the Lord your God who brought you out of Egypt, the land of slavery. (Deuteronomy 8:14)Pride is basically non-productive and unteachable:Pride only breeds quarrels, but wisdom is found in those who take advice. (Proverbs 13:10)


Pride is self-destructive:When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom. (Proverbs 11:10)Pride is the spirit of the mocker:The proud and arrogant man-"Mocker" is his name; he behaves with overweening pride. (Proverbs 21:24).

In High School, many ‘Big Men on Campus’ become proud and mocking while they are ‘the big fish in a small pond’. But things change when they go into the real world. Pride goes before a fall.

he most difficult thing about pride is that it is like bad breath: easy to detect in others, and hard to detect in ourselves. Pride has to do with a sense of entitlement, that we deserve everything that we have, that the world owes us a living.



The most famous human being once said in Mark 7:22 that pride comes from within our hearts and actually makes us unclean (non-kosher). Pride separates from others, by seducing us into thinking that we are better than others. Pride is the root cause of every caste system, every class system, and every system of racial hatred.[i] That is why the Bible says:Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. (Romans 12:16)

Pride goes before a fall.


Pride makes it very difficult to admit our need for anyone else, even God himself. Dr. Albert Runge comments that “Pride is the greatest hindrance to prayer.”[ii] Pride feeds the illusion that we are completely independent and self-sufficient. That is why Jesus said:It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter God’s Kingdom. (Matthew 19:24)Yet real breakthrough happens when we admit our need, our helplessness and powerlessness over life’s struggles.

CS Lewis’ wife, Joy Davidman, resisted her need for God for many years. She writes:God had been stalking me for a very long time, waiting for his moment; he crept nearer so silently that I never knew he was there. Then, all at once, he sprang. For the first time in my life I felt helpless; for the first time my pride was forced to admit that I was not, after all, 'the master of my fate'.[iii]

Pride and humility are total opposites. That is why both James and Peter quote Proverbs 3:10: “God opposes and resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.’ Let me ask you a question: Do we really want the Maker of the Universe to be opposing and resisting us? Yet that is what is guaranteed if we don’t deal with the pride issue. God will resist us at work, at home, in society.

Pride may not be a big deal to us, but it certainly is to God. Why is God so opposed to pride? Because it cripples our ability to really love others around us. As the famous poem in 1 Corinthians 13 puts it, love is not proud. Why are so many people successful in business and failures at home?

Pride goes before a fall.

Pride, like alcohol addiction, is cunning, baffling, and powerful. It is almost impossible to destroy head-on. Dr. Albert Runge comments that “our pride may lead to false guilt and self-condemnation, which refuses to accept God’s gracious forgiveness.”[iv] That is why Jeremiah 17:9 says: “Our heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?”

The secret to taming one’s pride is gratitude and thanksgiving. As John Fischer puts it,a thankful heart cancels out pride and arrogance. No need to judge other people when you are thankful for who you are. No need to measure yourself by and compare yourself to others when you are thankful for what God has done in your life.[v]Gratitude is a deep sense that life is a generous gift from a gracious giver. Gratitude is best expressed by the ancient words: “All things come from You, O Lord, and of your own have we given You.”

My prayer for those reading this book is that each of us as Canadians will gratefully lay our pride and self-sufficiency down at the foot of our Maker. It is our hidden pride that is holding back the waves of God’s revival to our thirsty nation

The Reverend Ed Hird+Rector, St. Simon’s Church North Vancouver
Anglican Coalition in Canada
http://www3.telus.net/st_simons
http://battleforthesoulofcanada.blogspot.com/

[i] AA Allen, The Price of God’s Miracle-Working Power, 1950s, http://www.agapao.de/download/books/allan.pdf p. 89 “Pride generally takes one of five forms: 1)Pride of FACE –How much better I look than those around me. 2) Pride of PLACE – Don’t ask that of one in my position! 3)Pride of RACE – I come from an excellent family and must uphold the family honour at any cost! 4) Pride of PACE – Everyone should be able to see that we are the most capable and efficient person available. No one else could keep up with me! 5) The last and worst one of all: Pride of GRACE: Look at my spiritual accomplishments, how humble I am, the length of my fasts, my visions, dreams and revelations, the gifts I possess – I must be a special favorite with God![ii] Albert Runge, A Brooklyn Jew Meets Jesus, Christian Publ., Camp Hill Pennyslvania, 2001, p. 197[iii] “Extraordinary Joy”, http://www.boundless.org/2005/articles/a0001188.cfm[iv] Runge, p. 178[v] High Praise Media Group Page http://home.bellsouth.net/p/s/community.dll?ep=16&groupid=281535&ck=


p.s. In order to obtain a copy of the book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada', please send a $18.50 cheque to 'Ed Hird', #1008-555 West 28th Street, North Vancouver, BC V7N 2J7. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

"Battle for the Soul of Canada" Shortlisted for TWG Award

The Word Guild have recognised great Canadian writers who are Christian for many years. Dr. J.I. Packer and Mark Buchanan to name a couple. This year "Battle for the Soul of Canada" has been added to the list of finalists.

http://www.thewordguild.com/newsreleases/index.html
SHORTLIST OF FINALISTS - THE WORD GUILD 2007 WRITING AWARDS

Book - Culture
Craig A. Carter of Toronto for Rethinking Christ and Culture: A Post-Christendom Perspective (Brazos Press/Baker Publishing)
Ed Hird of North Vancouver for Battle for the Soul of Canada: Raising Up the Emerging Generation of Leaders (independently published)
James K. A. Smith of Grand Rapids Mich. for Who's Afraid of Postmodernism? (Baker Academic)


Book - Independently-Published Nonfiction
Barbara Caiger of Markham Ont. for Walking Alongside: The Essence of Parish Nursing (Trafford Publishing)
Ed Hird of North Vancouver for Battle for the Soul of Canada: Raising Up the Emerging Generation of Leaders (independently published)
Keturah Leonforde of Guelph Ont. for Reflections from the Waiting Room: Insights for thriving when life puts you on hold (Essence Publishing)
Helen F. Miller of North York Ont. for The Hardest Place (Essence Publishing)
Kimberley J. Payne of Millbrook Ont. for Voice of a New Christian: Volume II (Within Reach)

Article, Short Story, Poetry & Song Lyric Categories
Article - General Readership (articles that explain or encourage faith for mainstream readers)
Paul M. Beckingham of Vancouver B.C. for "A Question of Faith" (Tidings)
Rick Gamble of Brantford Ont. for "A Ten Dollar Heart" (The Brantford Expositor)
Rick Gamble of Brantford Ont. for "A Veggie Tale" (The Brantford Expositor)
Rick Gamble of Brantford Ont. for "Leave an Impression" (The Brantford Expositor)
Jennifer Green of Ottawa for "In the beginning was the Word" (Ottawa Citizen)
Jennifer Green of Ottawa for "The Vanishing Choirboys" (Ottawa Citizen)
Ed Hird of North Vancouver for "Handel's Messiah At Christmas" (North Shore News)

The Word Guild
Media Release

The Word Guild Canadian Christian Writing Awards 2007 Media Release #2 Parts 1 & 2
http://rs6.net/tn.jsp?t=fqnnt4bab.0.omofv6bab.bclffybab.411&ts=S0242&p=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.thewordguild.com%2F; office voice mail 905.294.6482
This release is available as a downloadable Word document at http://rs6.net/tn.jsp?t=fqnnt4bab.0.oa8aj5bab.bclffybab.411&ts=S0242&p=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.thewordguild.com%2Fnewsreleases%2Findex.html

May 08, 2007
For immediate release

TOP CANADIAN CHRISTIAN WRITERS COMPETE FOR AWARDS

Number of entries doubles in three years for contest that recognizes the best work published by Canadian writers who are Christian

Waterloo, Ont. - The best Canadian writers who are Christian are competing for top honours in The Word Guild Canadian Writing Awards. This contest recognizes the most outstanding work published during 2006 in 31 categories.

Winners from across Canada will be announced on June 13 at The Word Guild Writing Awards Gala in Waterloo, Ont., the premier black tie event honouring Canadian writers who are Christian.

The evening will be hosted by award-winning journalist Rick Gamble, formerly of CTV's Kitchener affiliate CKCO, where he did local and national news reporting for 23 years before becoming a communications instructor at Wilfrid Laurier University. The Gala, to which the public is invited, also will feature a band, book signings and a reception.

"The contest has more than doubled in size in the last three years," commented Wendy Elaine Nelles, founding director of The Word Guild, the association that sponsors the contest. "We received a record number of 231 entries. These awards are gaining in national recognition and reputation."

The awards honour the best nonfiction books, novels, articles, columns, poems, stories, scripts and song lyrics published in the previous year. The contest is open to any Canadian citizen or permanent resident who affirms The Apostles' Creed.

Some of Canada's best-known Christian writers are among this year's contestants, including Mark Buchanan, J. I. Packer and James Houston.

"Prizes get attention, whether they're for sports, movies or books. The whole purpose of our writing contests and Awards Gala is to showcase examples of excellence, and to increase awareness of the variety and the quality of writing by Canadians who are Christian," she explained. "And whether entrants win or lose, the judges' critiques provide helpful feedback that enables them to become better writers."

Twenty-seven expert judges were recruited to evaluate the entries. This year's most hotly contested categories were profiles/human interest articles, long feature articles and columns/editorials/first person essays-each received 15 to 20 entries.

In another positive sign for the Canadian Christian publishing community, 91 book entries were submitted in 17 fiction and nonfiction categories.

Entries were sent from nine provinces and territories. While Ontario writers submitted 144 entries, British Columbia was strongly represented with 44 entries. There were 16 entries from Alberta, 13 from Manitoba, four each from Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, three from Saskatchewan and one each from Quebec, Nunavut and the U.S.A.

Winners of The Word Guild Writing Awards will be presented with a cash prize, a certificate and a specially designed lapel pin to mark their achievements.

Other writing awards will be presented at the Gala, including the Leslie K. Tarr Award for outstanding career achievement; the Best New Canadian Christian Author prize for an unpublished book-length manuscript; and the Partnership Award which recognizes individuals or organizations who have offered exceptional support and encouragement to Canadian writers and editors who are Christian.

The Gala will be held on Wednesday, June 13 at 7:30 p.m. in the Maureen Forrester Recital Hall, Wilfrid Laurier University, 75 University Avenue W., Waterloo, Ont. The public is warmly invited to celebrate with the finalists, their families and friends. Tickets may be ordered through TicketWindow.ca or by phone at 1-877-700-3130. Tickets are $12 in advance, or $15 at the door.

Award sponsorships are still available. Any business, organization or individual who would like to provide concrete support and encouragement to Canadian writers who are Christian is welcome to inquire about sponsorship benefits. Charitable tax receipts are available. Contact fundraising [at] thewordguild [dot] com to obtain details.

The Word Guild also sponsors Canada's largest Christian writers' conference, Write! Canada. From June 14 to 16, writers, editors, agents and publishers will meet in Guelph, Ont. for professional development, networking and marketing opportunities.

Keynote speaker Rudy Wiebe, one of Canada's most acclaimed authors, has twice won the Governor General's Award for fiction and earlier this year won the $25,000 Charles Taylor Prize for Literary Non-Fiction. Full details about the classes, faculty and manuscript critique service are available at www.thewordguild.com/writecanada.
The complete shortlist of finalists for The Word Guild 2007 Writing Awards is posted at http://rs6.net/tn.jsp?t=fqnnt4bab.0.omofv6bab.bclffybab.411&ts=S0242&p=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.thewordguild.com%2F.


ATTACHED:
Backgrounder - The Word Guild Writing Awards
Shortlist - The Word Guild Writing Awards 2007
BACKGROUNDER - THE WORD GUILD WRITING AWARDS

The awards are sponsored by The Word Guild, a national association with the mandate of connecting, developing and promoting Canadian writers and editors who are Christian. Formerly known as The God Uses Ink Awards, these writing prizes have been awarded annually since 1988. The Word Guild assumed responsibility for the awards in 2002, revamping and expanding the program.

The Word Guild contests are open to all eligible writers who have Canadian citizenship or permanent resident status, and are not restricted to members of The Word Guild. All entrants are asked to affirm The Apostles' Creed as a condition of acceptance in the contest. However, the opinions and viewpoints expressed in the shortlisted and winning works represent the authors' personal beliefs and are not necessarily endorsed by The Word Guild.

Although contest rules do not require an explicit statement of Christian belief, judges looked for an underlying expression of the writer's Christian worldview informing and influencing the writing. Entries were judged according to excellence of writing; impact (the inspirational or informational value making it worthwhile); fulfillment of stated purpose; suitability to target audience; originality and freshness of style.

Entry guidelines and forms for the 2008 contests will be posted at www.thewordguild.com in late 2007. Entries for work published in 2007 will be accepted until January 18, 2008.

The Word Guild, an association of more than 270 Canadian writers and editors who are Christian, was founded in 2002. Members are committed to encouraging one another and fostering standards of excellence in the art, craft, practice and ministry of writing.
The long-term vision is to impact the Canadian culture through writing from a Christian worldview. Immediate goals are to help writers and editors at all stages connect with each other, develop new skills and discover new publishing opportunities. See http://rs6.net/tn.jsp?t=fqnnt4bab.0.omofv6bab.bclffybab.411&ts=S0242&p=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.thewordguild.com%2F for further information.


Note: Book jacket stickers labeled "Finalist" are available as a promotional tool for all shortlisted books. These eye-catching, removable stickers may be obtained at cost from The Word Guild by contacting info [at] thewordguild [dot] com.

SHORTLIST OF FINALISTS - THE WORD GUILD 2007 WRITING AWARDS

Books

Book - Apologetics/Evangelism
Dr. Brad Burke of Windsor Ont. for An MD Examines: Why Does God Allow Suffering? (Cook Communications)
Dr. Brad Burke Windsor of Ont. for An MD Examines: Why Doesn't God Stop Evil? (Cook Communications)
Donna Carter of Calgary for 10 Smart Things Women Can Do to Build a Better Life (Straight Talk Ministries)
Stanley E. Porter of Hamilton Ont. and Stephen J. Bedard of Meaford Ont. for Unmasking the Pagan Christ: An Evangelical Response to the Cosmic Christ Idea (Clements Publishing)
Alan Reynolds of Richmond B.C. for A Troubled Faith: Do We Really Need God? (Word Alive Press)

Book - Children
M. D. Meyer of Winnipeg for Get Lost! (independently published)
Helen Toews of Winnipeg for Emma's Corner (The Cottage at Creek Bend)

Book - Christian Living
Mark Buchanan of Duncan B.C. for The Rest of God: Restoring Your Soul by Restoring Sabbath (Thomas Nelson)
Dr. Brad Burke of Windsor Ont. for An MD Examines: Why Does God Allow Suffering? (Cook Communications)
Dr. Brad Burke Windsor Ont. for An MD Examines: Is God Obsolete? (Cook Communications)
Dr. Brad Burke Windsor Ont. for An MD Examines: Does God Still Do Miracles? (Cook Communications)
J. I. Packer of Vancouver and Carolyn Nystrom for Praying: Finding our Way Through Duty to Delight (InterVarsity Press)
Alan Reynolds of Richmond B.C. for A Troubled Faith: Do We Really Need God? (Word Alive Press)

Book - Culture
Craig A. Carter of Toronto for Rethinking Christ and Culture: A Post-Christendom Perspective (Brazos Press/Baker Publishing)
Ed Hird of North Vancouver for Battle for the Soul of Canada: Raising Up the Emerging Generation of Leaders (independently published)
James K. A. Smith of Grand Rapids Mich. for Who's Afraid of Postmodernism? (Baker Academic)

Book - Independently-Published Nonfiction
Barbara Caiger of Markham Ont. for Walking Alongside: The Essence of Parish Nursing (Trafford Publishing)
Ed Hird of North Vancouver for Battle for the Soul of Canada: Raising Up the Emerging Generation of Leaders (independently published)
Keturah Leonforde of Guelph Ont. for Reflections from the Waiting Room: Insights for thriving when life puts you on hold (Essence Publishing)
Helen F. Miller of North York Ont. for The Hardest Place (Essence Publishing)
Kimberley J. Payne of Millbrook Ont. for Voice of a New Christian: Volume II (Within Reach)

Book - Instructional
Barbara Caiger of Markham Ont. for Walking Alongside: The Essence of Parish Nursing (Trafford Publishing)
Sue Careless of Toronto for Discovering the Book of Common Prayer: A Hands-On Approach; Volume II: Our Life in the Church (The Prayer Book Society of Canada & ABC Publishing)
Dr. Rod J. K. Wilson of Vancouver for How Do I Help a Hurting Friend? (Baker Publishing)

Book - Leadership/Theoretical
James M. Houston of Vancouver for Joyful Exiles: Life in Christ on the Dangerous Edge of Things (InterVarsity Press)
Tim Perry of Otterburne Man. for Mary for Evangelicals: Toward an Understanding of the Mother of Our Lord (InterVarsity Press)
Alan Reynolds of Richmond B.C. for A Troubled Faith: Do We Really Need God? (Word Alive Press)

Book - Life Stories
Sheila Wray Gregoire of Belleville Ont. for How Big Is Your Umbrella? Weathering the Storms of Life (Kregel Publications)
Lloyd Mackey of Ottawa for Stephen Harper: The Case for Collaborative Governance (ECW Press)
Marilyn Meyers of Waterdown Ont. for Through Fire & Sea (Rocksalt Publishing)
Sandy Rosen of Fort Langley B.C. for Off the Map (Destiny Image Europe)

Book - Relationships:
Steve Bydeley of Kitchener Ont. for Fathered by God: Resolving Life's Hardships (Lapstone Publications)
Barbara Caiger of Markham Ont. for Walking Alongside: The Essence of Parish Nursing (Trafford Publishing)
Dr. Rod J. K. Wilson of Vancouver for How Do I Help a Hurting Friend? (Baker Publishing)

Book - Special
Kirsten Femson of Pickering Ont. who compiled The Way They Should Go: Timeless Advice for the Teen Journey (Castle Quay Books)
George Whipple of Burnaby B.C. for The Peaceable Kingdom (Penumbra Press)

Novel - Contemporary
Keith Clemons of Caledon Ont. for These Little Ones (George Colton Publishing)
Deborah Gyapong of Ottawa for The Defilers (Castle Quay Books)

Novel - Mystery/Suspense
Deborah Gyapong of Ottawa for The Defilers (Castle Quay Books)
Linda Hall of Fredericton, N. B. for Dark Water (Waterbrook Press/Random House)

Article, Short Story, Poetry & Song Lyric Categories

Article - General Readership (articles that explain or encourage faith for mainstream readers)
Paul M. Beckingham of Vancouver B.C. for "A Question of Faith" (Tidings)
Rick Gamble of Brantford Ont. for "A Ten Dollar Heart" (The Brantford Expositor)
Rick Gamble of Brantford Ont. for "A Veggie Tale" (The Brantford Expositor)
Rick Gamble of Brantford Ont. for "Leave an Impression" (The Brantford Expositor)
Jennifer Green of Ottawa for "In the beginning was the Word" (Ottawa Citizen)
Jennifer Green of Ottawa for "The Vanishing Choirboys" (Ottawa Citizen)
Ed Hird of North Vancouver for "Handel's Messiah At Christmas" (North Shore News)

Article - Inspirational/Devotional
Donald N. Bastian of Brampton Ont. for "The Joy of Aging" (Christianity Today)
Paul M. Beckingham of Vancouver for "Comfort!" (Regent College Publishing)

Article - Long Feature
Jennifer Green of Ottawa for "The Fear of God" (Ottawa Citizen)
Terry LeBlanc of Evansburg Alta. for "Native Suicide: A Challenge to the Church" (Faith Today)
Ross Muir of Kitchener Ont. for "Recovering Silence" (Canadian Mennonite)
Patricia Paddey of Mississauga Ont. for "Why Are Evangelicals So Passionate About Israel and Palestine?" (Faith Today)
Karen Stiller of Port Perry Ont. for "The Beauty and the Beasts of Christian Farming" (Faith Today)

Article - News
Jennifer Green of Ottawa for "Conservative Anglicans livid over lesbian priest in Ottawa/Torn Asunder" (Ottawa Citizen)
Ross Muir and Tim Miller Dyck of Waterloo Ont. for "Mennonite Groups Oppose Land Speculator" (Canadian Mennonite)

Article - Personal Experience
Paul M. Beckingham of Vancouver for "Folk Religion or Folk Folly?" (Tidings)
Donna Mann of Holstein Ont. for "Weeding And Revising" (Mosaic: Arts, Entertainment & Lifestyle)
Violet Nesdoly of Surrey B.C. for "A Mother's Meddling Fingers" (Christian Women Online Magazine)
Adele Simmons of Whitby Ont. for "The Cabin" (Writers' Circle of Durham Region)
Stephanie Tombari of Burlington Ont. for "Heal Me" (GEEZ Magazine)

Article - Profile/Human Interest
Milton Friesen of Airdrie Alta. for "Faith and Politics in Action"(Decision Magazine-Cdn. Edition)
Milton Friesen of Airdrie Alta. for "The Universe to Explore: Faith and a World of Ideas" (Decision Magazine-Cdn. Edition)
Jennifer Green of Ottawa for "The Education of David Jeffrey" (Ottawa Citizen)
Gail MacMillan of Bathurst N.B. for "The 50 Cent Angel" (St. Anthony Messenger)
Josie Newman of Claremont Ont. for "Going to Extremes" (Charisma)

Article - Short Feature
Paul M. Beckingham of Vancouver for "Purpose-Driven Starbucks" (Tidings)
Linda Wegner of Powell River B.C. for "Llama kills blamed on dog packs, lack of enforcement" (Country Life in B.C.)

Column/Editorial/First Person Essay (single)
Kurt Armstrong of Vancouver for "Why Love Will Always Be A Poor Investment" (Radix)
Sheila Wray Gregoire of Belleville Ont. for "Seeking a Wise Man" (The Shield)
Thomas Froese of Uganda and Ancaster Ont. for "Christmas: the luxury to pick and choose" (ChristianWeek)
Ann-Margret Hovsepian of Montreal for "Is Marriage Still Sacred?" (Beyond Ordinary Living)
Denyse O'Leary of Toronto for "Can you choose to help? Or are you simply spreading your genes?" (Maranatha News)

Column/Editorial/First Person Essay (series)
Grace Fox of Heriot Bay B.C. for "Parents-Stay Awake!" and "And What Happened to My Kid at Summer Camp" (B.C. Christian News)
Thomas Froese of Uganda and Ancaster Ont. for "Where is African spirituality heading?" and "Doomsday Diversions" (ChristianWeek)
Violet Nesdoly of Surrey B.C. for "Research-The Dietary Supplement Your Poems Can't Do Without" and "Poems Growing-Cultivate with Care" (Inscribe Christian Writers: FellowScript)
Dave Toycen of Mississauga Ont. for "A Seat at the World's Food Table" and "The Most Powerful Weapon" (World Vision Canada: Childview/Enfants du monde)
Heidi VanderSlikke of Harriston Ont. for "The God of Wonders" and "What's in a name?" (Christian Courier)
Ray Wiseman of Fergus Ont. for "Life-wise with Ray Wiseman: Christmas gifts that endure" and "A new year brings new hope" (Wellington Advertiser)

Poetry
Caroline H. Davidson of Ladysmith B.C. for "September Lace" (Circle 49 Publishing)
Judith Millar of Kitchener Ont. for "After the Fall" (Southern Ontario Library Service: The Changing Image)
Violet Nesdoly of Surrey B.C. for "Some Words" (Infuze Magazine)
Richard Weening of Newmarket Ont. for "1 Corinthians 13" (SCA International: Word & Deed)

Song Lyrics
Ali Matthews of Stratford Ont. for "Poised for a Fall" (Shake A Paw Music)
Ali Matthews of Stratford Ont. for "Santorini" (Shake A Paw Music)

Additional Categories:
Awards will be presented on June 13 to the winners of eight categories for which there are no shortlists of finalists: Book-Biblical Studies; Book-General Readership; Book-Young Adult; Novel-Independently Published Fiction; Novel-Romance; Article-Children/Young Adult; Article-Review; and Short Story. No awards will be presented this year in the following categories: Script/Screenplay; Novel-Historical.

p.s. In order to obtain a copy of the book 'Battle for the Soul of Canada', please send a $18.50 cheque to 'Ed Hird', #1008-555 West 28th Street, North Vancouver, BC V7N 2J7. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.