Solitary Refinement

By Doug J. McKenzie
CEO for The Voice of the Martyrs Canada

Not long after my appointment to VOMC in 2012, I began examining the contents of our Canadian archives, particularly those pertaining to Rev. Wurmbrand's early beginnings of establishing the ministry, in an attempt to trace some of the history of the mission. While our Canadian founders, Klaas and Nellie Brobbel (est: 1971) of southern Ontario, remain foundational to our heritage, it was the near-incredible story and witness of the late Richard and Sabina Wurmbrand that further inspired me. To this day, the couple's testimony adds power to the mystique surrounding their survival, particularly that of Richard who -- for 14 years of evil incarceration, torture and confinement -- was able to supernaturally transfer what would otherwise have been hate and fear into joy and transcendence.

Ode to a Persecuted and Outcast Mother

I don't think I am alone when confessing that I have some mixed feelings about facing the challenges I see lying in my path for 2018! Years ago, I felt overwhelmed by the role of parenting three small children in our family home. The time was filled with joy and blessing; but, if I'm honest, also with a fair smattering of doubt, exhaustion, occasional resentment and, on a few occasions, even despair.

Ode to a Persecuted and Outcast Mother

There are those around us -- abused, martyred, displaced, disentitled, separated from loved ones -- who are wandering almost aimlessly amid the dusty dunes of the sultry, hot and parched rivers of sand that, more often than not, lead to desolation. Long gone are the dreams of rearing their children with any "HOPE" of cultural normalcy...the only issue remaining now is that of survival. A mother's hands grip the tattered shirts of her children, pulling them forward as if confidently toward a safe place, despite the anguish of potentially leading them to their death. During the treacherous journey, her children cry out in pain from -- among many maladies -- dehydration and heat stroke.

Consider the Lilies

I've often been impressed with the fragility, vulnerability and great strength of purpose of those followers of Christ throughout the world who suffer for their persistence and consistency in the faith. They are flowers among the thorns, and children of the "Most High." It is not uncommon for such brothers and sisters of the faith to stand firm as oppressed Christians -- fainting physically, yet rising spiritually on wings of eagles.

ice sculpting

Note from our Chief Executive Officer: Once again, I'm grateful that our Executive Assistant,
Jo Phillips, is able to share some thoughts, which I'm sure you will enjoy!

I think it would be safe to guess that at least some of you are in a season like mine right now! I'm feeling weary, too busy, and the need to rely upon God's grace to get me through my days and weeks. Of course, I am always totally reliant upon His grace for everything; but when strained, I become even more aware of this. My tiredness reminds me to return to and drink from the never-ending fountain of God's love and provision, so that I may have something good to offer as I bustle about! After all, "unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labour in vain" (Psalm 127:1 ESV).

Jesus washing His disciples' feet

Last month, Christians all around the world were celebrating Easter -- remembering and focussing on stories from the Gospels with which we are very familiar -- but the depths of which we may never fully attain. However, if we will allow it to do so, the living and active Word of God will minister to us afresh as we read it with open hearts and minds.