Why produce a Christian sourcebook
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Why produce a Christian sourcebook

Well, here’s the story of how God works in our lives.

The Christian Ministry Sourcebook had its origins 30 years ago.

As a young student, I was entering my final year at The University of Toronto.  It was time to prepare for the next phase of life: I needed to find a job.

I had spent my years studying international development issues, and had volunteered for three years at World Vision Canada.  I had had several conversations with the head of WVC’s Government Relations Department, Linda Tripp.  Wonderful woman.  I hoped for her to be my future boss.  Still, I didn’t want to put all my eggs in one basket.  I needed to discover other options.  I needed to find a list of ministries like World Vision.  But how?

At the same time I had taken on the role of youth ministry leader at our local church, Trinity Anglican in Streetsville, Ontario.  We launched our new year with a leadership team meeting in September 1984.  We discussed our plans including the need for a leadership retreat, new curriculum for our programs, and how to distribute a substantial bequest that had been given to our church to be re-distributed to medical ministries in Haiti.  But how would we find retreat centres, curriculum suppliers and medical ministries in Haiti?

So, I set off to find the guide that listed all the ministries like World Vision (for my career search), and all the curriculum suppliers, local retreat centres, and Haitian medical ministries.   I called every major Christian bookstore in Ontario.  I checked Robarts Library, the largest library in Canada.  I checked local libraries and neighbouring churches.  The guide didn’t exist.  But everybody wanted one.  And they wanted me to call them when I found it.  We all needed it.  So I started writing.

Now for the side stories.  While all this was happening I had become engaged to Carol Larusson (now Carol Froom, the story has a happy ending).  We planned to marry 12 months later, in September 1985.  I’d also just been invited to pursue a Masters of Divinity at Wycliffe Seminary.  I was seriously considering accepting.  She wasn’t.  I had to choose.

Second side story.  Don’t worry, it all connects.  I had financed my studies by working as a salesman and tailor at Tip Top Tailors.  One day, after altering a customer’s suit, he asked me “Is this your career, or do you have other plans for your future?”  I told him that I felt a call to ordination, and had been invited to attend seminary, but was also seriously considering working at World Vision.   He told me he needed someone to write a book on the Christian Ministries in Canada.  I already had that book half written.  We both recognized God’s guidance.  I got the job.  And, I got married.

Peter Bailey was my first boss at World Vision.  We both found great joy in doing God’s work together.  At the end of the year, World Vision stopped publishing books.  Requests for an updated book continued to pour in.  And so, Genesis Publications was born.

Times have changed since then.  With the advent of the internet, anyone can find any ministry anytime.  But that’s really nothing new.  Even in 1985 people could find any ministry with just a little research.  What people couldn’t find was their full range of options.  And that is the function of christiansourcebook.com.  Nowhere else can one find profiles of thousands of ministries.  Our website has options.  With God’s guidance, you might even find your calling here.

And did I go to seminary?  Well, thats a story for another day.