Kelowna pastor Laurence East comes from a long line of missionaries in India and married into a long line of Mennonites now in Yarrow but his words to Gathering 2016 put him in line with Isaiah.
“The church needs a reset button on mission,” he said. “A call to obedience rather than comfort.”
In a city with the largest homelessness issue of any its size in Canada, his congregation Metro serves drug addicts, prostitutes, people marginalized by their gender identity, and many suffering relational poverty
Metro’s social enterprises and ministries “are vehicles for expressing the gospel…ways to express God’s kingdom through everyday things.”
East is aware that obedience can be costly. At Metro, among other things, it looks like being rejected by wider society for working among those society has thrown away.
But he’s in good company. For the apostle Paul, he reward for doing as Christ compelled him was prison and death.
The demands of the gospel “arise from the one whose it is,” require the obedient to surrender their rights, and turn you into a servant of all, East said. Christ followers are compelled to an unflinching commitment to extending the message of hope and truth found in Jesus.