Thursday, October 01, 2015

Merveilleux! “Resisting Gossip” in Montreal

I had a wonderful experience last weekend in Quebec.

Dave Almack (the US director of CLC Publications) and I traveled together to Montreal for the launch of Résister à la Médisance. This was my first time in Quebec, and I can sum it up with one word: "Merveilleux!"

Dave did a great job of describing our time there in his article, “A Fifteen Minute Walk to the Cross.” He explains the cultural and spiritual context that surrounded our trip and why our book launch was a day of small but significant beginnings.

While in Montreal, I got to meet Antoine Roberge, the director of CLC Canada (which has been in existence for 60 years!), and his ministry associate Rod. Antoine and Rod gave us a tour of this beautiful French-speaking city. We got to visit two attractive CLC stores, an open air market, two seminaries, the downtown of the Old City, and the overlook of Mount Royal (for which the city was named by Jacque Cartier himself). I was also treated to a traditional French dinner of cassoulet. Next time, poutine!

On Friday evening, I got to speak to a gathering of people interested in resisting gossip at the SEMBEQ headquarters, hosted by my friend Daniel Henderson. It was my first time being translated as I speak–I thoroughly enjoyed the experience of bilingual communication. Afterward, I signed books and tried to chat with folks on my own. They were all much better in English than I am in French!

One lady who attended the book launch event told me that she had experienced deep injustice in her past and needed help knowing whether or not talking about her hardships with others was gossip or not. I think my teaching that night really helped to both reassure her that her seeking help was not gossip and be reminded that our Lord will ultimately right all wrongs. What a rich time sharing the gospel!

I think I might have acquired a taste for international travel from this trip. It would be neat to get to travel to other countries to talk about winning the war of the wagging tongue in still other languages and cultures. Who knows? Maybe France, Colombia, Korea, or Belarus might be next?