Throughout the Bible, God’s people are told to create reminders of the ways that he has delivered and protected them. In the Old Testament, it was not uncommon to do this through the creation of piles of stones that would prompt memory.
EMCC archives contain many stories of the people who went before us in the church. Their challenges, their joys, but above all, God’s faithfulness.
In the secular world, archives provide information about the past and the people who lived there. But for the church, an archive can tell a much grander story of how God has been at work among his people. In a sense, the archives of the EMCC can be seen as our memorial stones. In this, and upcoming newsletters, Memorial Stones will be a regular column featuring some of these stories, to remind us of what God has done in the past, in anticipation of what He will continue to do through us.
The story of Beulah Mission is one such memorial stone.
Founded in 1907, a group of concerned individuals ministered to the poor and destitute in Edmonton. Within its first two years the Mission had served more than 13,000 meals. By 1910 it was still the only rescue mission in the city for destitute and abandoned women. The images below are from its 1919 account book. What struck me when I looked at it, apart from the wonderful prices, was that this is a real picture of the church at work in the community. Donations from individuals and churches were taken and used to benefit real people with real needs.
So while my electricity bill is more than $1.98 a month, and my banking records are digital, I feel connected to the story that God has been using the church to tell. His story of grace and redemption, where we, the Church, get to show that to each other and the world. We will be telling more of this story and others in future issues and hope that you are inspired, encouraged, and challenged.
Editor’s Note: If you have items of archival interest, please contact Shannon at firstname.lastname@example.org.