Resurrection: Coming Soon in Moncton, NB
[Original post by Michelle Lorimer]
Why didn't someone tell me about this sooner? When Scott Carroll finally heard the gospel for the first time, at age 21, he wondered why he'd never heard this good news earlier.
The gospel - the good news that Jesus Christ came into this world and laid down his life to rescue us from lives lived bound by sin and far from God - had never reached Scott's small corner in Nova Scotia. Never reached his home. Never had the chance to change his life.
So, when the gospel finally entered Scott's life, on the same day that Scott (a new father, struggling with alcohol addiction, anger, martial difficulties and bankruptcy) had planned to take his own life, the gospel saved him from death. Literally.
It's with this holy desperation and conviction that Scott and his wife Chrystal are making plans to launch a forthcoming New Venture in Moncton, NB, called Resurrection.
We want Resurrection to cultivate an atmosphere of expectancy, where broken people find hope, healing, grace and true identity in the resurrection reality of Jesus Christ.
"Will you come to church with us for pancakes?"
For a young Scott, Christmas and Easter were holidays about chocolates; then as a teenager, life consisted of playing high level hockey and baseball, setting goals to join the military and joining the reserves at seventeen. But at age eighteen, when his parents' marriage fell apart, his world was thrown upside down. While both parents moved on into new relationships, Scott didn't know where he belonged. In three years things had gotten so bad that he'd planned his exit from this world. He'd written the note to his brother, asking, Will you be a dad for my son?
That same night, in a stunning example of divine intervention, he received a call - from his distanced father.
Scott's father had found a Heavenly Father, and he'd called, out of the blue, to ask his son:
"Will you come to church with us for pancakes?"
Scott was dumbfounded.
"Sure. Call me in the morning and tell me where it's at," he replied.
The next morning Scott walked into church smelling of the hangover that he had, wearing an OMG They Killed Kenny! T-shirt, and expecting nothing. People embraced him.
"We've heard so many good things about you from your dad!" they said.
The statement stunned him.
Pastor Mike Sherbino, who would go on to walk with Scott as he followed Jesus, gave him a Bible and helped him begin reading the book of John.
A fresh call to lay down one's life
What got to Scott was the fact that Jesus was willing to die and sacrifice His own life for the lives of others. This was something powerful to contend with, and as a military man, it resonated with him.
The times that followed were difficult but also filled with new life: working for the military by day, Monday through Friday, then leaving to work the evening/night shift at Sobeys, and, at any chance he had, being at a Bible study and being taught God's Word.
Since these early days, Scott has served in a variety of ministry endeavors: pursuing Christian studies and pastoral ministry training at Briercrest College and Kingswood University; pastoring in Lantz, NS, and Moose Jaw, SK; volunteering as a chaplain for the RCMP; and working with young men at Teen Challenge and Hockey Ministries International.
Then, in October 2017, two things happened at the same time.
Scott was moving through to become an RCMP officer, full time. Meanwhile, he and Chrystal were also going through the C2C Network's assessment process for potential church planters, trying to stay true to a call they felt they still had. Scott was one interview away from possibly becoming an RCMP officer and had said to God, "I can serve you here, with this." But in response to Chrystal's and his earnest prayers, they discerned God saying to them, "Pull your application out and see what I will do."
So he did.
It was then that new doors began to open. In December of 2017, Scott contacted Jacob Birch (Regional Developer for Atlantic Canada's New Ventures). He also reconnected with Tim Milner, an old friend who had previously helped him at his church plant in Lantz, NS, and who was already involved in ministry and worship. Together, they began to discuss the beginnings of a New Venture called Resurrection.
Where are the evangelists today?
As they make plans for a launch by end of 2018, Scott and Tim continue to feel an evangelistic burden and the mandate to be a church that proclaims: "The kingdom of God is here."
We must believe that when Jesus taught us to pray "thy kingdom come," He wants us to experience heaven on earth. The tendency is to focus on "getting people saved" instead of showing people how to embrace the fulness of life in Christ. It's not about just getting into heaven but realizing that the power of the resurrected Christ dwells in us now!
Believers in Christ have done a disservice to the role of a pastor, saying,
'You do the preaching and the evangelism for us.'
But we need to each act out our giftings and vision: the evangelists, the teachers, the intercessors, etc. We can't all be in full time ministry, but we can all use our gifts, full time--it's not a pastor's job to do everything.
Today there are still those who, like Scott long ago, need to hear the gospel as they wait to be set free by its truth and by its Saviour. There are still those in Moncton, and all across this great country, for whom the gospel will become a pearl of matchless price, once it's uncovered and discovered.
Who will help proclaim it, and never take it for granted?
Scott and Tim, along with their families and the New Ventures team helping form Resurrection, want to stay true to the gospel's mandate - to proclaim that the kingdom of God is closer to us than we know, and that its Saviour is as crucially relevant to this lost world as ever.