Written By: Cathie Ostapchuk
I am increasingly encouraged by all the firestarters there are in this nation as women are igniting their girls to rise up in their churches, in their places, brave and on mission.
Three years ago, when Gather was a fragment of a dream being whispered in the hearts of some of us in this nation, we couldn’t see the smoke rising from fires that had been lit. We were waiting for wind of the Holy Spirit to ignite them into flame.
I have met women from coast to coast (still praying to gather with the girls in the Eastern provinces and NWT!) from whose hearts and the Houses of God they serve, womens' initiatives are being launched.
We want you to know them too! Women championing women and celebrating what God is doing in this nation is what Gather Women is all about!
The revelation that God was on the move in ways I had not seen began with meeting Helen watching the beautiful Sisterhood rising at Relate Church in Surrey, BC, where Helen pastors with her husband John. Experiencing the stunning gathering of women called Flourish that Julie Davidson prepares annually for the girls at My Church and beyond in Ottawa imparts enough inspiration to last a lifetime! Gather Women was in Montreal two years ago and together with French and English-speaking women, and women from all denominations, including Stephanie Reader from Nouvelle Vie, we experienced God’s presence in our midst at St. James Anglican on the generous invitation of Graham Singh.
In February of this year, the beautiful Vanessa Hoyes from Australia, (who, along with her husband Andrew, planted Resurgent Church in Montreal), invited women in her city to a stunning Feminine and Fierce day designed to help each one Find Their Fire. I shared the platform with amazing Montreal girls including Yanci Yarbrough who co-pastors City Church, Elle Boise who is leading the amazingly creative women at La Chappelle, and Mylen Query who is a gifted worship leader and artist at Nouvelle Vie.
There are women in every city, every town, every community in this nation gathering their girls to learn the Word, lean into Jesus, be activated to step out to make disciples and make Him known. Equipping Women at The Peoples Church in Toronto, under Joy Byers’ leadership, Elim Sisterhood in Saskatoon led by Char Quiring and Kaitlyn Cey are just two more examples of women who are taking initiative to raise their game and their knowledge of God’s word in order to serve their people and beyond. There are hundreds more!
This is a taste of the feast at the gorgeous table God has set that extends across Canada that He is calling His women to gather at. He is invites us all to find our place and take our place at that table. When we see a woman showing up, speaking up, standing up and stepping out to gather the one, the few or the many in her place, we are encouraged by the larger story being written for this time in our nation. It is a story of revival! As one woman rises, another is encouraged to rise.
As the chapters of His story and our stories continue to be written in 2018 in Canada, the way you rise to take your place needs to be part of the greater narrative. We want to see you and we want to know you!
Would you write us at firstname.lastname@example.org and share your stories of what God is doing with you, the women in your church and your community so we can share it with women coast to coast?
Have you been impacted by a Gather Women experience? We would love to hear how the possibility of this national movement catching more fire might inspire and equip you in your place! We want to create a space for the voices of women in Canada to be heard. Would you help us by sharing your part of the story?
The way you rise matters and we want to encourage you. God is on the move and one flame sparks another until there is a gorgeous blaze across the nation!
The Way She Rises is your story and our collective story. We can’t wait to hear from you!