The Network is a new church planting initiative within the BIC. Led by Craig Sider, The Network seeks to bring mission and outreach to the forefront of ministry. The first official information night for the Network will be on February 24th at 7pm at the Mahtay Cafe & Lounge in St. Catharines. Please come as we seek to cast vision for the future of the Network and answer peoples’ questions.

location for Info Night:
Mahtay Cafe & Lounge
241 St. Paul Street, St. Catharines, ON L2R 3M7

For more info, go to:

We envision launching two Area Networks for Life Communities in 2012 – St. Catharines and Hamilton. How do Life Communities work?

A Life Community (LC) is a group of up to 40 people who gather weekly for 3 purposes: to bless their community, to care for each other, and to celebrate God at work. At least once a month the LC will actively bless the surrounding community in a tangible and specific way. Each LC is led by a gifted lay person who collaborates with a team in shaping LC life. LCs are highly mobile, meeting in homes, cafes, community rooms, etc.

Teaching and Learning take place in the LC. The Network ‘produces’ DVD teaching and conversation guides for the LC. DVDs are 15-17 minute blblically-based teachings by gifted communicators and conversation guides use thought-provoking questions based on ideas shared in the DVD. Longer podcasts and video teachings are identified for further individual exploration.

Yet LCs are not stand-alone entities. Rather, they are the building block of ministry and life transformation for an Area Network. A dozen or more LCs can belong to an Area Network with the Area Network Leader providing leadership, coaching, resourcing, and accountability for each LC Leader. Twice a month all LCs in an Area Network come together for a celebration of God at work in their communities.

51/49 characterizes giving in this network. 51% of all giving within a LC is available for use through an LC…compassion, mission, space, and child care. 49% of all giving is used by the Area Network for resourcing, leadership, and network development. Additionally, the twice-a-month gatherings of the Area Network provide a giving opportunity for a specific mission/compassion cause outside of the Area.

This Network reflects a number of paradigm shifts:

* From Programs to Life in Community

* From Large-group preaching venue to Interactive Learning

* From Statistics to Stories

* From Staff Driven to Volunteer Led

* From Attending Church to Being the Church

* From Investing in Buildings to Investing in Mission