This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
CANADA
By Adam Miller


There’s a place in Toronto the paramedics call “suicide alley,” where immigrants jump from high-rise apartments out of hopelessness. This fact probably creates a new and foreign understanding of the glistening city by the lake. 


But what city is what it seems? Like people, there is more light and darkness than anyone can know, especially at first glance.


“They come here hoping for a new life,” says church planter Scott Rourke, talking of how difficult it is for the Bangladeshis, Indians and Hungarian Romas to adjust to a western culture. Doctors and lawyers become hotdog vendors and janitors and move into places like Parkdale, among the poorest and most dangerous places in one of the world’s most expensive cities.


When Rourke helped plant Oasis Church two years ago, Parkdale was among the first places on his list to see transformed. Beginning with an existing work started by the Salvation Army and another church plant in the city, Oasis Church has helped start a soccer league on an embattled green space.


Rourke paints a grim picture of the need, but a portrait of grace as God works through the gospel.


“Two people have died on this field,” he says, speaking of the violence that invades the lives of residents. “And every week police and ambulance sirens resound in this area. We host two games a night on Mondays and Tuesdays then we have a pick-up game afterwards so we can outstay the drug dealers who line the field waiting for the kids.”


This soccer league is only the beginning. Cookouts of halal food (approved by Muslims) have expressed love to the local Muslim population (1 out of 3 Torontonians is Muslim).


ON MISSION • Summer 2012 37

Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52