We Give God Praise

By Ryan Dawson

As we approach Christmas and close out the calendar year, we have so much to be thankful for as a church family.  One of our regular practices is to recount “God sightings” – where we see God showing up in big and small ways as we seek to live out our identity as a Family of Servants on Mission.  God is faithful and He has been so good to us as a church.  We give God praise for all that He has done and for all that He is doing…

Psalm 100:1-5 (NIV)
Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.
2     Worship the Lord with gladness;
    come before him with joyful songs.
3 Know that the Lord is God.
    It is he who made us, and we are his[a];
    we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
4 Enter his gates with thanksgiving
    and his courts with praise;
    give thanks to him and praise his name.
5 For the Lord is good and his love endures forever;
    his faithfulness continues through all generations.

In 2023 we give God praise because…

•We celebrated with 11 people as they took the step of baptism (Jennifer, Ollie, Anna Sophia, Sara, Liam, Seanna, Clara, Kevin, Caleb, Kerkeslin, & Shekinah).
•We saw Jarod and Adriana Tremblay step out as new Impact Leaders when their IC multiplied.  This IC continues to make an impact.  
•More than 20 women were encouraged and equipped at the IF Gathering hosted by Cedarview Church in February.
•Multiple Sequoia Impact Communities braved the cold to support the important work of Jericho Road and the Ottawa Mission on the Coldest Night of the Year in February.  
•The Courageous Justice Series called us to “seek justice and mercy” as a church by highlighting the ministries of Ottawa Innercity Ministries, Jericho Road, Safe Families, and the Courteaus as Urban Missionaries.  
•We enjoyed an incredible International Potluck on Compassion Sunday and saw more children sponsored by our church.
•A lot of children and some cool parents enjoyed learning about the meaning of the cross and resurrection at Easter Jam.  
•Throughout the year we saw 48 people attend six different Connect 101 classes to find out more about how to take their next step at Sequoia.  Many of these people are new commers to Canada so we continue to thank God for how He is working.
•We hosted several corporate prayer and worship gatherings throughout the year to seek the Lord as a church family.  
•The Tuesday Zoom prayer meeting entered its 3rd year and continues with a faithful group of people who seek the Lord on behalf of our church.  (Everyone is welcome!)
•We had an amazing celebration with Donna and Mike Boisvert in May to honour their legacy of faithfulness to the Lord and Sequoia.  After serving in a pastoral role at Sequoia for over 20 years, Donna transitioned to a part-time bookkeeping role, and she continues to serve the Lord faithfully alongside Mike in our church and beyond.  
•15 leaders graduated from the Servant Leadership Cohort after a 10-month leadership intensive.  
•We hosted a very helpful and informative program for children and parents, called Brain Defence, to help kids stay safe online.  
•The Big Give was a wonderful blessing to our community in June and we saw many coming and many serving.
•We saw God open up some interesting opportunities with our land as we explore the possibility of incorporating attainable housing as an extension of the Impact Centre vision.  
•We had an amazing day at Clarke Fields for our Canada Day outreach.  
•It was a gift to have Aaron and Tessa Richert, and their kids with us for several weeks in the summer.  The Richerts currently serve the Lord in Dubai.  
•We saw 80 children attend our Sequoia Day Camp in July.  25 helpers (including 15 teens) gave their week to invest in these amazing children.  
•We saw 64 children attend our Athletes in Action Camp in August.  20 helpers (including 15 teens) served throughout the week.  
•18 Youth attended No Other Name over Easter and 10 attended the Change Conference in October.  
•Blair and Chris Mick joined the Courteaus as Urban Missionaries, and we were able to commission them for this important call.  
•Respond Ottawa served the city with a deployment after a tornado touched down in July.
•We hosted six Movies in the Park throughout the summer with various community associations and churches and we saw close to 1100 people engaging at these family friendly events.  
•We strengthened our partnership with Ottawa Christian School by purchasing and installing a projector in the library, building cubbies in 3 classrooms, and purchasing a SeaCan together for storage.  
•We partnered with the Barrhaven Food Cupboard by running several food drives in and through our church to help those struggling with food insecurity.
•We saw Mike and Donna Boisvert deployed twice with Samaritans Purse (West Kelowna and Northern Quebec) as the hands and feet of Jesus.  
•We had an amazing turnout at the Barrhaven Not-for-profit for the Fall clean-up and BBQ.  
•Sequoia engaged in Operation Christmas Child and packed many shoe boxes for children overseas so they can know the love of God.  
•We were able to bless 57 families (most of them new to Canada) with Christmas gifts through our Christmas Tree Outreach, in partnership the Courteaus and the Micks as Urban Missionaries.
•30 couples were strengthened in their marriages through the Alpha Marriage Course, and most of them enjoyed a fun in-person couples date night at OCS.
•Over 80 people came together for our Christmas Carol outreach in early December at OCS, where we encouraged people to bring food items for the Barrhaven Food Cupboard.  
•Throughout the year we have enjoyed Donut Sunday, BBQ Sunday, and Cookie Fellowship Sunday, by our amazing Hospitality team.  
•We were blessed by our Sequoia children in December with an amazing rendition of Light of the World.  
•Sequoia sponsored The Haven Christmas party and will help out at the Barrhaven Family New Year’s event at Walter Baker.  
•We have seen many new people engaging and serving with our ministry teams so that we can help others find and follow Jesus.  

In all this and much more we give God praise!!

Thank you for being an integral part of all that God is doing in and through Sequoia!  You have been blessed to be a blessing - and you are!  

With much love and appreciation, Ryan