Mar 4, 2020Updates

Within this board/staff e-newsletter, you will find a number of items addressed: the property development report from Kevin Aide (Building Committee Chair) and the finance report from Tim Jenkins (Finance Committee Chair). We share all these items so that you can be up-to-date in your understanding of how things are at the bridge

Along with the above, we also take some space in this newsletter to inform you of any ministry or staffing changes. We are getting ready for a great spring and Easter! 

Here are a few staff adjustments that have been made:

Pastor Samuel, Executive Pastor, is taking a parental leave until the end of the summer. He, Ann, and Micah now have a new addition to their family in Leah Elizabeth Mills. Congratulations to the Mills family! During Samuel’s absence, I will be fulfilling his role of coordinating ministries. A number of others will also be assisting with the preaching schedule.

Pastor Karen, LifeGroups and Leadership Development Pastor, will continue to provide leadership, organization, and promotion of the LifeGroup ministry. She will also work with the Lead Pastor to develop and implement a centralized ideology and strategy for developing equipped and exemplary leadership at the church.

Pastor Anna, Care and Family Ministries Pastor, will now be full-time and continue to provide care and healing initiatives through Seasonal Groups, Prayer, Visitation, Practical Response and Benevolence. She will also be helping to facilitate creative opportunities for families to grow in Christ and experience greater levels of love, intimacy, and functionality.

Pastor Emily, Connections Pastor, has also moved to full-time to develop and promote critical steps (Connections) for every individual in their journey of discipleship and to assist people towards opportunities for Gathering, Grouping, Giving, and Going. Emily will coordinate with every ministry to ensure clear pathways for engagement and growth in Christ.

Pastor Sam, Young Adults and Young Families Pastor, will pastor, lead, and organize for the Gathering, Grouping, Giving, and Going of our Young Adults, for the purpose of their growth and maturity in Christ. He will also assist the Care and Family Ministries Pastor (Pastor Anna) in developing proactive strategies for the growth and welfare of young families.

A huge thanks to each of you for your love and devotion to Christ, your service to His purposes, and your lifestyle of giving that enables impactful ministry to be fulfilled. 

Pastor Brian
Lead Pastor

P.S. The new church sign will be installed by mid-March. We are looking forward to being able to communicate to our community regarding the upcoming Easter services. Thanks to all who have given so generously to this!

Financial Update

February marks the halfway point of the fiscal year here at the bridge; a perfect time for a financial health check-up. 

As we look back over the past few months, we are so thankful for your continued generosity. Over 95% of our income comes directly from the congregation through weekly tithes and offering. When we set the budget for this year, we were prayerful that giving would continue to increase and through your partnership and faithfulness, we are currently ahead of target. We have been so encouraged by the increase in numbers of new and repeat givers.

In addition to regular giving, I would also like to highlight three areas where your generosity went above and beyond.

First, through your generosity and support, we were able to bring Christmas Cheer to 115 family units. Over $27,000 worth of gifts and donations were received to bless these families during the Christmas season.

Second, over $40,000 was raised through the four Christmas Eve services for our four community partners (Markham Food Bank, Centre for Dreams, Markham-Stouffville Crisis Pregnancy Centre, MOSAIC Interfaith—Out of the Cold). What a blessing to partner with these organizations to spread God’s love throughout our community.

Third, Pastor Brian presented a request this past fall to enhance our presence on 16th Avenue through a new digital sign. This request came with a cost of $100,000—a significant, yet impactful, ask. We are thankful that you rose to the challenge and gave faithfully to this cause. In a matter of weeks, the sign will be installed, marking a new chapter in the property development of the bridge.

This week, the Finance Committee will be meeting to review mid-year financial results, including our investments and budgets as they relate to the property development. We will also be laying the framework for the 2020/21 and beyond operating budget, keeping in mind added costs that a larger building will bring. Please remember this team in your prayer time as they steward over the finances of the bridge.

Again, thank you for supporting the ministries of the bridge. Your financial support enables our impact both locally and globally. For your convenience, we provide several different ways for you to give. These options can be found at our website:

Tim Jenkins | Chair of the Finance Committee & Board Member

PROPERTY Development Update

How many of you have ever arrived a few minutes late for service just to find out that the auditorium is packed? As someone who serves on the Auditorium Host team, I know all too well how full our services can get and I long for the day when our expanded auditorium will be finished. What a great problem to have though! God has blessed the bridge in so many ways and I am thankful for the challenge of seating everyone who enters our doors. 

As each day goes by, we inch closer to the day when our auditorium will be larger, our kids’ area vastly expanded and our atrium made bright, open and conducive to gathering and connecting. We continue to make progress toward this goal—albeit it not as fast as I would like—but significant and positive progress nonetheless.

If you attended the annual business meeting in November, I indicated that I was hoping we’d break ground in the spring; that is now looking more like the summer. When I find myself being impatient with the process, I am reminded that this is God’s timing and that while I am not in control of all the moving parts, He has control. While we wait for the wheels to turn at the City of Markham and with York Region, we’ve made significant progress in several areas. The committee that was tasked with defining guiding principles for the interior design have completed their work and this has been sent to the architect. A separate and new team was formed to start looking at audio/visual requirements and they have consulted with experts in this field. We are being incredibly intentional in how we want the facility to express the values of the bridge and both interior design and audio/visual decisions factor large into this effort.

In late December, we submitted updated drawings to the City of Markham as required by the Site Plan Application process. These updated drawings have incorporated prior feedback and it is our hope that they will be considered complete by the city. Once all city and regional departments are satisfied with our plans, we can move toward Site Plan Acceptance. After we receive Site Plan Acceptance, phase one of the building project will commence. What an exciting day that will be for all of us.

Kevin Aide | Chair of the Building Committee & Board Member

the bridge