After picking up Wanda Ho, Alpha's National Chinese Coordinator, we hosted 11 guests from 3 Edmonton area Chinese Churches at Transcend Coffee Shop. There was a slight mixup - I thought I had reserved an entire upstairs room; they understood I had just reserved a table, but staff there were very gracious, things were resolved and we had quite an encouraging meeting - sharing, listening and planning for future Alphas within the Chinese community. I may have posted before, but many of the larger Chinese churches have three congregations (Cantonese, Mandarin and English-speaking) with as many as 9 services on a weekend.
Then it was off to Calgary on Friday for a fast meeting at Tim Horton's with Rich, who along with his wife is coordinating an Alpha in his home through Eastside City Church. Our lunchtime appointment was for 11:45, and having left Leduc for a 2 1/2 hour drive, we arrived at 16th Ave and 9th Street NW at exactly 11:40. Pretty good timing I think. Later that afternoon we met with the South Calgary Chines Evangelical Free Church and heard encouraging stories of how they have run Alpha for at least eight years, and still have at least 60 guests on every course - some as many as 160.
Saturday morning we had a meeting at Waves Coffee Shop where Elaine Young (4th from the left, below), Alpha's Coordinator for the Atlantic Provinces, and National Coordinator for the Marriage Courses joined us for a get-together of local Calgary Marriage and Parenting Course coaches and coordinators.
And here we are there:
Saturday afternoon we were at Westside Calgary Chinese Alliance Church (WCCAC)for a presentation on The Marriage and Parenting Courses, and Alpha in Chinese. I was able to give a brief talk, with translation by Wanda, on the importance of evangelism in the post-Christian world before Wanda gave her own talk on the principals and practicalities of Alpha itself.
And here we are there:
There we had a crowd of over 50 people from just that one church. they are committed to running a Marriage Course and Alphas for various ministries within their church, both Chinese and English, Youth and Adult.
I have said before that I love driving in Calgary when traffic is good, hate it in rush hour. But WCCAC is just a stone's throw from Stony Trail, Calgary's ring road, so we had no trouble hitting the highway for our ride back home to Leduc.
It was a bit of a whirlwind tour, but as I said, it was a pretty good weekend.