-an article for the September 2003 Deep Cove Crier
Our Home & Native Land
What a wonderful experience it has been this summer to travel on the ‘La Danse’ tour with 250 other Canadians from Montreal to Victoria! With 120 francophones and 130 anglophones on five buses, it was a total immersion in what it means to be a Canadian with our rich diversity of cultures and languages. God has caused me to fall in love with ‘our home and native land’ of Canada in a whole new way. He has given me a deep, heart-felt love for the Quebecois and the other French Canadians across our land.
As Canadians, we have tried all kinds of political and economic solutions to the great divide between francophones and anglophones. But all of these solutions have only gone so far. An amazing breakthrough happened this summer in Canada at a heart level and a spiritual level. God has been teaching us that the Quebecois respond at the level of the heart, and that Quebec itself is the heart of Canada. Going on the La Danse tour this summer showed us at a very deep level that Canada cannot live without her heart. Quebec has the anointing to release passion back into our nation. Quebec has the anointing of love, l’amour, as a gift to the rest of Canada. It is so easy to let our hearts grow cold. But God’s desire is that we might not have hard hearts but soft hearts towards one another as francophones and anglophones.
The original vision of our first Prime Minister John A. MacDonald and the other founding fathers was that francophones and anglophones would join together in a ‘holy matrimony’, based on love and mutual respect. In a healthy marriage, neither the personality of the husband nor wife are crushed. Rather both blossom in their unique giftings, bringing added value and richness to the marriage relationship. The Quebecois gift of the arts, as expressed through francophone dancers, musicians, and painters, is a precious gift indeed. On the La Danse tour, we were privileged to have a francophone dance troupe from Montreal: Alliance et Vie. Their sensitive portrait of the desire of the Quebecois for healing and reconciliation touched the anglophones profoundly in our twelve-city tour. The Alliance et Vie Dance Troupe has to be seen to be fully appreciated. Thanks to the ‘100 Huntley’ TV program which is seen by over a million Canadians each week, anyone can now dial in and view this gifted dance troupe for themselves. Just click on http://220.127.116.11/huntley/2003jul/100hs030729.ram (56K) or http://18.104.22.168/huntley/2003jul/100hs030729c.rm (Cable) You will not want to miss the Cape Breton dance or the dance of Peace.
We are so grateful to Ron and David Mainse who traveled, when they could, with the Crossroads TV team Error! Bookmark not defined. which was covering the entire La Danse tour day after day. Ron Mainse, who has just been appointed as the President of Crossroads Christian Communications, is determined to become bilingual, having just taken a full immersion course in Jonquière, Quebec. His father David Mainse, who is now focusing on the restoration of marriage, presided over the covenanting ‘engagement’ service in Edmonton between francophone and anglophone. You can watch the ‘engagement’ by dialing into http://22.214.171.124/huntley/2003aug/100hs030806.ram (56K)
or http://126.96.36.199/huntley/2003aug/100hs030806c.rm (Cable) We do believe that there is a holy matrimony coming between francophone and anglophone in Canada. The walls are coming down in a way that almost seems too good to be true. In fact, it is too good not to be true. God is healing ‘our home and native land’ at a very deep level.
As I traveled by bus with the La Danse team from Montreal to Victoria, I was struck by the extensive Alpha National Initiative coverage, involving billboards, bus-stops, and newspapers in every city http://www.alphacanada.org/ . I believe that God has used La Danse to bring an open heaven spiritually over Canada. I don't believe that it was a coincidence that Toronto was having the world's largest Alpha conference ever (2,000+), right as La Danse was passing through Toronto. Neither is it a coincidence that thousands of Canadian churches are inviting the nation to dinner this September. God is sovereignly using La Danse and Alpha to bring healing to ‘our home and native land’.
Dr David Demian, the leader of ‘Watchmen for the Nations’ and ‘La Danse’, said that no one in Canada has really felt like they could call Canada home. All of us have felt like strangers here. But as God has been healing the historic divisions between French and English, there will be a new ability to embrace this beautiful land of Canada at a heart-felt level. Quebec and other French Canadians, said Dr. Demian, have the key to bring healing to the deep wounds with the First Nations people of Canada. Once Canada has been healed at a deep level, then we as a nation will be able to enter into our destiny, to bring healing to other nations around the globe. My prayer is that God may have dominion from sea to shining sea, and that Canada our home and native land may become a nation of nations that brings healing to the nations.
The Reverend Ed Hird, Rector, St. Simon’s Anglican Church
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St. Simon's Anglican Church
North Vancouver, B.C.