A Heart for the Local Church and Equipping its Leaders

Looking back, Dr. Michael Pawelke believes that his heart for training and equipping leaders came from his experiences in the local church. The current President of Briercrest College and Seminary and this year’s speaker for Ministry Leadership Day with Heritage Theological Seminary, says that he finds himself often reflecting on his sense of call into ministry.

One past experience that he says has shaped the way he leads today was the valuable discipleship he received when he was young from one Sunday School teacher at his local church in Toronto, Ontario. For Pawelke, it was how this teacher took the time to teach him the Scriptures and freely give of his own time to walk with him that continues to form the way he leads and teaches others to lead.

“While he never used the words “disciple” or “reproduction”, this relationship shaped my values and practices such that I have always sought to build into the lives of a handful of others in a more significant way,” explains Pawelke.

He also recalls a time while church planting where he says he hit a wall and began a year of reflection, learning, and healing that brought clarity to his call to “love, lead, feed, and seed” disciples through his ministry.

“It was then that I began to own the responsibility of not only reproducing disciples but also of developing leaders,” says Pawelke. “And, because I love the local church so much, I wanted to produce leaders for the local church and Christ’s kingdom work.”

As he continues to serve and equip leaders in the local church, Pawelke has had the opportunity to walk alongside pastors and church leaders as they face the challenges that have come from the COVID-19 pandemic. He states that this unique time has not only impacted the way leaders shepherd the local church but has also impacted the leaders themselves.

Pawelke says that though he has watched some church leaders creatively serve their people and communities in these times, he has also witnessed leaders respond in a variety of ways that reflect the struggles of leading a church during times of turbulence and crisis.

From the emotional toll of the additional work that is depleting leaders to the preoccupation of working with government restrictions while watching important, routine ministry be displaced – Pawelke says that it has all left church leaders exhausted and discouraged with not much left give to their people at the end of their days.

“This takes different forms and is likely due to a number of factors – inability to gather, difficulty knowing how their flock is doing, challenges in maintaining a sense of community, or fear for the wellbeing of their most vulnerable,” he explains. “Many leaders feel deeply for their people, but simultaneously feel limited in their ability to engage.”

As church leaders continue to serve in light of the pandemic, Pawelke points leaders to the hope for all pastors when they reset their focus on God’s call on the Church and His promises to be faithful through whatever the Church faces.

“The Great Commandment and the Great Commission are paramount. The mission of the Church should come first,” says Pawelke. “We also see from history that Christianity’s message and efficacy transcends politics, culture, and natural disasters.”

“It has worked, and can work in every imaginable political context, during war, in times of famine, and during times of peace. Let’s stay the course.”

As he prepares for Ministry Leadership Day 2021, Pawelke says that he is looking forward to not only teaching fellow leaders, but also the opportunity to connect with people during the question-and-answer times.

“I want to hear from others on what is occupying them. I know the phrase is overused by our political leaders, but we truly are in this together,” he says. “I derive such energy from simply being with other leaders of like passion and like challenges and only wish we were together in person.”

Join Dr. Pawelke online for this year’s Ministry Leadership Day – Click here to register today.

Ministry Leadership Day 2021 Welcomes Dr. Michael Pawelke

Click here to register today for Ministry Leadership Day 2021 

Heritage Theological Seminary will be welcoming Dr. Michael B. Pawelke to be this year’s guest speaker at its annual Ministry Leadership Day being held on Thursday, March 4th.

Each year, Ministry Leadership Day provides an opportunity for pastors and ministry leaders to be encouraged and equipped through relevant and practical teaching surrounding a wide variety of topics related to leading in a local church context.

To continue to support church leaders through this event during these unique times, Ministry Leadership Day will be livestreamed for all participants so that they can learn and grow from their homes.

Dr. Pawelke currently serves as the sixth president of Briercrest College and Seminary in Caronport, Saskatchewan, where he also teaches on leadership and pastoral ministry. During his sessions, he will be covering a number of topics including longevity in leadership and good judgment.

Dr. Rick Reed, President of Heritage College & Seminary, says that he is grateful to have Dr. Pawelke participate as our speaker for this year’s online Ministry Leadership Day.

“Dr. Pawelke is the kind of leader that I’d be happy to follow as I have watched the Lord use him to effectively lead a local church as well as Briercrest College and Seminary,” explains Dr. Reed. “He combines spiritual depth, relational warmth, and leadership wisdom.”

Dr. Barry Howson, Academic Dean of Heritage Theological Seminary, has watched Ministry Leadership Day become a yearly highlight for many pastors and ministry leaders as they come to the event to learn and grow from experienced pastors like Dr. Pawelke.

“Over the years we have had great pastoral insight and practical instruction from seasoned ministry leaders,” says Dr. Howson. “This is a great opportunity for pastors and church leaders to learn from those who have struggled, endured and born fruit for the kingdom of God.”

Ministry Leadership Day 2021 will be livestreamed on March 4th from 9:00am to 12:00pm and registration is $30 for each attendee. Dr. Pawelke will be leading two sessions throughout the morning, each followed by a question-and-answer period.

To register for this year’s Ministry Leadership Day and to learn more, please visit DiscoverHeritage.ca/MLD.


Announcing Ministry Leadership Day 2021

Join us online for this year’s Ministry Leadership Day 2021 on Thursday, March 4 from 9:00am to 12:00pm  presented by Heritage Theological Seminary.

Heritage is excited to welcome President of Briercrest College and Seminary Dr. Michael B. Pawelke to be this year’s guest speaker for this year’s event.

Dr. Michael B. Pawelke strives to honour the Lord in everything he does, including his role as Briercrest College and Seminary’s sixth president. With a vision of “educating disciples, equipping the Church, and engaging our world” Pawelke aims to continually grow as a disciple of Jesus Christ himself. Prior to stepping into his role as president, Michael served in pastoral roles in Manitoba and Ontario, including 19 years as senior pastor of Compass Point Bible Church in Burlington.

To learn more about this year’s event, please visit DiscoverHeritage.ca/MLD.

Click here to register for our online Ministry Leadership Day.

Update – August 27, 2020 – Fall 2020 Protocols

Fall 2020 Campus Protocols

August 27, 2020

“Our team has spent months praying and planning for this upcoming year.  In spite of the challenges caused by the pandemic, we are asking God to do “far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us” (Ephesians 3:20).” – President Dr. Rick Reed

Heritage College & Seminary has just released its safety protocols for the upcoming fall semester. It’s our deep desire that this year at Heritage will be a time of spiritual impact and physical safety.

To read the Fall 202o Campus Protocols document, please visit DiscoverHeritage.ca/Fall2020.

Update – August 12, 2020 – Fall Course Delivery

Course Delivery and Revised Schedules for Fall 2020

Updated August 12, 2020

Visit DiscoverHeritage.ca/Fall2020 for course delivery details and the revised College and Seminary schedules.

Heritage College & Seminary has recently released its new and revised schedules for both College and Seminary classes this fall semester.  

For students enrolled in the College, the new schedule will provide more details surrounding on-campus and online class delivery this year, along with further details on how Heritage will be providing live streaming options for on-campus courses.

Seminary students will also find more information on how online course delivery will work for the upcoming semester.

To learn more about course delivery plans, revised schedules, and other details – please visit DiscoverHeritage.ca/Fall2020.

Campus Update – Plans for Fall Semester

Looking Ahead to Fall 2020 – Heritage College & Seminary Announces Plans for Fall Semester

Updated June 30, 2020

Visit DiscoverHeritage.ca/Fall2020 to read and download Heritage’s plans for the fall semester.

Heritage College & Seminary is committed to providing a safe and healthy environment for all its students, faculty, and staff. For this reason, we are establishing guidelines and reconfiguring the campus in anticipation of the fall semester.

Our goal is to create the best possible learning experience for all students, whether they are on campus or off campus. We want all members of the Heritage community to feel safe and secure as they begin, or continue, their studies this September. As always, our mission is to equip men and women for life and ministry, from coast to coast to coast, and around the world.

To learn more about Heritage’s plans for Fall 2020 and to stay updated on further details  – please visit DiscoverHeritage.ca/Fall2020.