pastor, chaplain, woman, Canadian, free methodist church in Canada, minister, evangelical, long term care chaplain

Erika Mills

Pastor | Pastor's Wife | Chaplain

Resources and Thoughts


  1. Youth Games: Survivor
    09 Mar, 2018
    Youth Games: Survivor
    2 teams w/ face paint prepare their team in each room. When music starts come to Tribal council Youtube music links: First Tribal Council Tell the teams there will be 7 competitions with different scores. A leader will be keeping track of all the scores. At the end of the challenges we will come back to tribal council and you will hear your results. Everyone will get an award for how they played the game. 1 adult writing up certificates for the game: most_____ competitive, hilarious, detailed,
  2. Youth Games: Minute To Win It
    09 Mar, 2018
    Youth Games: Minute To Win It
    MINUTE TO WIN IT COOKIE FACE: This is a great game to kick off the party because all of the players can compete at the same time (or you can break it down into several rounds of game play). Each player places a cookie on their forehead, and the goal is to get the cookie into your mouth using only your facial muscles in under 1 minute. No hands! This is tougher than it looks! Box of Cookies STACK IT UP: Players must stack 25 pennies in under a minute using only one hand. This game works well
  3. A Favourite Poem "If" by Rudyard Kipling
    06 Jan, 2018
    A Favourite Poem "If" by Rudyard Kipling
    If by Rudyard Kipling If you can keep your head when all about you        Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,    If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,     But make allowance for their doubting too;    If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,     Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies, Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,     And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise: If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;        If you can think—and not make thoughts
  4. Images Reflecting Life Together
    06 Jan, 2018
    Images Reflecting Life Together
    Analogous Images for the Spiritual Journey Running the race Apprentice/disciple Potter and clay, ​Vine and Branches (Growing fruit)   Pilgrimage or journey   Battle of spirit realm (whose image is this - I stole it!)  Coming home Athletic discipline
  5. And a Little Child Will Lead Them
    06 Jan, 2018
    And a Little Child Will Lead Them
    We had an 11 year old lead this Call to Worship for our congregation. It worked beautifully: Psalm 136 Child reads the bold and the congregation responds with the small words.     Give thanks to the Lord, because he is good. His faithful love continues forever.     Give thanks to the One and Only God of all. His faithful love continues forever.     Give thanks to the God of miracles. His faithful love continues forever.     He brought the people of Israel out of Egypt. His faithful love
  6. Less Netflix More Books: 2018 Reading List
    06 Jan, 2018
    Less Netflix More Books: 2018 Reading List
    Some of these books are required reading for my ministerial tracking, and some have been sitting on my bookshelf for years. I choose these books to start with for 2018. Let the reading begin! And thank you Netflix Canada for being crappy. Working on the de'ts: Bonhoeffer, Dietrich. Life Together. (New York: Harper and Rowe) 1954. The classic exploration of Christian Community. Briggs, J.R. Fail. (Illinois: Intervarsity) 2014. Caswell-Braton, Amy. Witness of Perfect Love Kempis, Thomas. The
  7. Embracing Alzheimers
    02 Jan, 2018
    Embracing Alzheimers
    When I arrived at my long term care job this morning, a photocopied Globe and Mail article was waiting on the main desk for all to read. Titled "Alzheimer's brought out my shy mother's inner diva", by Sheilah Spurr I'm familiar with the Diva featured in the article and I want to share its deeply spiritual perspective of hope and resilience.
  8. Daily Meditations January 2018
    01 Jan, 2018
    Daily Meditations January 2018
    I write mini-meditations as part of my devotional discipline.  J28 J27 J26 J25 J24 J23 J22 The same God who wrestled with Jacob Engages with us, for us. So follow wholeheartedly  And know you're enough  Just as you are. J21 Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God, and saying, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news." J20 Voices of warning echo: How many chances will we get? J19 Prophets have it rough. Compelled to
  9. Use Art in Worship
    01 Jan, 2018
    Use Art in Worship
    A picture is worth a thousand words. Images reveal the nature of God in ways that words cannot. Often, depictions are used as scripture for the illiterate. We don't worship the image but we allow the image to reveal to us how different human beings imagine God, leading us into deeper revelation of who God is. In worship, use images to explore a fresh glimpse into the nature of God, who revealed himself in concrete form through Jesus Christ. The daily lectionary has images to coincide with
  10. Candles for religious ritual
    01 Jan, 2018
    3 Reasons Rituals Are Important
    In modern evangelicalism, rituals are often considered suspicious, perceived to be antiquated or new age-y. However, rituals have been an essential part of the religious experience throughout history.   Here are 3 reasons rituals are still important: 1. Rituals acknowledge God through recognizing our own human limitations When you set time aside to invite God into your life you are realizing your human condition. 2. Rituals lead to personal transformation When you take time for ritual you
  11. Communion Outline
    30 Dec, 2017
    Communion Outline
    Communion services generally follow this outline, and there are many ways to personalize a communion service for the elderly using this simplified template: Invitation to the table Words of Christ: Bread Prayer Distribute the Bread Words of Christ: Blood Prayer Distribute the cup Concluding Blessing
  12. A Prayer for The Dying
    30 Dec, 2017
    A Prayer for The Dying
    A Dying Prayer God of all comfort,  creator of PERSON’s inmost being, be present here with us. In her darkness,  be a warm light.  May she know the hope that you prepare a place for her. In her pain,  soothe and comfort her.  May she accept the care of others as an expression of your love. In her memories,  hold her hand. May she see your face  in every moment of her past and future. And as she steps into the next life, be her guide. May she have confidence in knowing that you are in front
  13. The Importance of using Music in Spiritual Care
    30 Dec, 2017
    The Importance of using Music in Spiritual Care
    As a chaplains we are not music therapists, although it can seem like it sometimes! That's probably because the positive effects of music and singing on wellbeing are proven to increase quality of life in people with dementia, and to meet their spiritual needs. In a 2004 study, twenty nine aged participants were assigned to one of three groups: choir, reminiscence and control. Results indicated increased levels of motivation and engagement, and lyrics evoked long-term memory with religious and
  14. 14 Spiritual Needs of Older People
    30 Dec, 2017
    14 Spiritual Needs of Older People
    Koenig (1994) identified 14 spiritual needs of older people based on prior research both at a theoretical and empirical level. Koenig here is specifically talking about religion and the various practices that emerge from participation in religion. He has done no work on the more generic understandings of spirituality that are highlighted earlier. This distinction is important as the word 'spirituality' is multi-vocal and is required to be used with clarity and caution if an argument is to be
  15. Outline for Remembrance/Memorial Ceremony
    30 Dec, 2017
    Outline for Remembrance/Memorial Ceremony
    Many Long Term Care homes offer memorial services for their residents: -To offer a consistent monthly ritual that acknowledges recent deaths -To provide an opportunity for residents to celebrate life through sharing stories -To allow for a time of silence that cultivates respect and remembrance -To offer community support through gathering and song -To acknowledge with words that grief is an important part of the human experience Goals for remembrance ceremony: An opportunity for grieving
  16. Aboriginal Funeral Prayer
    30 Dec, 2017
    Aboriginal Funeral Prayer
    Sometimes, in chaplaincy you're asked to lead inter-faith ceremonies. I like having a few wisdom-poems at my finger tips. I use this one often: Traditional Aboriginal Prayer  A Native American poem, possibly by Ishi, the last living member of the Yahi Native American tribe / people of The Pacific Northwest - [attribution contributed and amended 14/09/11] When I am dead Cry for me a little Think of me sometimes But not too much. Think of me now and again As I was in life At some moments it's
  17. 6 Funeral Poems and Blessings
    30 Dec, 2017
    6 Funeral Poems and Blessings
    1 Fall in love with living Wrestle with the chaos and the pain Within yourself and in the world Join the Celebration of life Dancing with the angels and the clowns And may God's peace and joy bring you light And embrace you as a partner in the divine creating May God, Creator, Redeemer and Sustainer Bless you and remain with you  Now and Forever, Amen. 2 The Sweet Good-bye At the last, let it be a sweet good-bye. All business finished. All affairs tidied. All loose ends attended. All regrets
  18. Advent: Christ Candle: Worship and Scriptures
    24 Dec, 2017
    Advent: Christ Candle: Worship and Scriptures
    ​ Scripture - Matthew 1:20-23 (NIV) 20 But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus,[a] because he will save his people from their sins.” 22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23 “The virgin will conceive and
  19. 6 Classic Benedictions
    18 Dec, 2017
    6 Classic Benedictions
    1. Numbers 6:22-27 The Lord bless you and keep you. The Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you. The Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. 2. Rom. 15:13 - May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. 3. 2 Cor. 13:11 - Rejoice!  Aim for restoration, comfort one another, agree with one another, live in
  20. Advent: Joy Candle: Worship and Scriptures
    18 Dec, 2017
    Advent: Joy Candle: Worship and Scriptures
    Metaphores: A treasured item being put back together, Star Wars: rejoicing in conquering evil, Themes: Pushing through fear, Restoration Luke 1:46-47,49 And Mary said, I’m bursting with God-news;  I’m dancing the song of my Saviour God.  God took one good look at me, and look what happened— I’m the most fortunate woman on earth!  What God has done for me will never be forgotten, the God whose very name is holy, set apart from all others.  His mercy flows in wave after wave on those who are in

The rhythms of this vocation

LINKS TO Women Preacher Blogs