In honor of our Northern neighbor’s birthday on July 1st, we thought we would take a moment to catch up with Tim Day, one of the Canadian members of the #MDGC16 family who will be joining us in New York City this October. Author, former pastor, and now leader of City Movement Canada – an initiative created “to help business leaders, para-church ministries and churches work together to advance the gospel in their city” – Tim will be bringing 100 dynamic Canadian leaders to #MDGC16 to experience a rich time of collaborative gospel movement dialogue and training.
Q: How would you describe the current gospel landscape of Canada?
Statistics show a straight line decline in weekly church attendance for Canadians since the 1960’s. This statistic of church attendance is now reaching 11%. This trend points to weekly attendance dropping below 5% in the next 10 years if a change does not occur. This reflects an increasingly secular and pluralistic society.
Q: What urban issues are Canadians facing on a daily basis?
Canadians are facing urban challenges connected to high housing prices, lack of relationships, long work hours, and pressure to “keep up.”
Q: You are leading the team behind City Movement Canada, an initiative created “to help business leaders, para-church ministries and churches work together to advance the gospel in their city.” Would you share more about what inspired you to launch this initiative?
I and my team worked for 15 years with Toronto’s largest multi-site church. We became increasingly aware of the challenges of leading effective ministry in cities, the declining health of the church, and the exodus of millennials from the church. It became obvious that the solution needed to be bigger than any one church or ministry.
Q: How has your experience as a pastor of 15 years and an author of God Enters Stage Left, ‘a creative retelling of God’s story,’ informed your approach to bringing about gospel movement?
Leaders like ideas, strategies and programs. I discovered that people aren’t so engaged by these, but rather want to feel actively in relationship with God and to join Jesus in the adventure of His story. A movement is not so much about a great program but a great story worth telling and joining.
Q: You are bringing a team of 100 leaders from Canada to Movement Day Global Cities 2016. What are you and this team most looking forward to about MDGC 2016?
We have two core groups coming. The first is a group of strategic millennial leaders from across Canada. We will be doing a think tank with them at MDGC16 to envision a new future for the church of Canada in cities. The second group is composed of city leaders from across Canada who are attending as a way to help us listen well to what God is doing across the world, as well as to what God is doing in and through this group of young leaders. I am excited to have this time to listen to what God will say to us. It reminds me of Acts 15: ‘it seemed good to us and the Holy Spirit.’
Q: How can the broader Movement Day community support those working to bring about gospel movement in Canada?
The broader MDGC16 community can support us by continuing to create a strong, functional global network of city ministry leaders that can walk together as we witness God align His church, in heart and mission, in cities around the world.