History of Pathfinder Ministry in Ontario, Canada
In 1950, the General Conference Youth Department has recognized the Pathfinder club as a ministry to young people in grades 5-10. It developed into a worldwide organization that impacted lives of Pathfinders positively. It was adopted by World Divisions, including the North American Division. (For details of the history of pathfindering, read the book, “The Pathfinder Story” by John Hancock).
Seeing the value of this ministry, the Ontario Conference Youth Department has implemented the Pathfinder program designed for children ages 10-15. Below are the youth directors and associate youth directors/Pathfinder specialists/directors who helped shape pathfindering in Ontario, Canada in partnership with lay members:
1979 – 1985 Pastor Gordon Pifher
1986 – 1988 Mr. Bryan Lee
1988 – 1989 Pastor Jason McCracken
1989 – 1991 Pastor Milton Perkins
Pastor Frankie Lazarus, Associate Youth Director
1991 – 1994 Pastor Milton Perkins
1994 – 2006 Pastor Frankie Lazarus
Pastor Cyril Millett III, Associate Youth Director
2006 – 2012 Pastor Cyril Millett III
2006 – 2009 Pastor Charles Leader, Associate Youth Director (Pathfinder Specialist)
2009 – 2013 Pastor Edwin Martin, Associate Youth Director (Adventurer and Pathfinder Director)
2013- 2016 Pastor Gerardo Oudri
2016-Present Pastor John Scott
2013-Present Pastor Edwin Martin, Director of Adventurer, Pathfinder, & Master Guide Ministries (also serves as SDACC representative to NAD’s Pathfinder Committee)
Pathfinder Executive Coordinators:
1980 David Clarke
1993 Russell Lambert
2005 Chris Grant
2007 Alex Rowe
2010 Russell Lambert
2017 Chester Lewis
The first organized Pathfinder Federation in Ontario was formed and was called “The Toronto Pathfinder Federation”
The Federation was composed of the following clubs:
* Toronto East, under Director Narva Griffin
* Toronto West, under Director Paul Jones
* Toronto Perth, under Director Dawn Edwards
* Mississauga, under Director David Clarke
The officers elected to lead the Federation were:
David Clarke, Federation Director
Dawn Edwards, Secretary
Paul Jones, Treasurer
Frank Lake, Drill Master
Pastor Gordon Pifher joined the Conference as Youth Director.
The Ontario Conference Pathfinder Federation was officially formed under the direction of Pastor Pifher with David Clarke appointed as coordinator.
International Camporee “We Are His Hands” at Camp Hale, Colorado.
Ontario Pathfinder Federation attended its first North American Camporee under the leadership of David Clarke, Ontario Coordinator, and Ruth Weidner, Conference Pathfinder secretary.
The North American Division also made changes to the Youth Ministry and separated the AY Ministry from the Pathfinder Ministry.
International Camporee “We Are His Colors” Friendship Camporee, Mt. Union, Pennsylvania.
David Clarke was appointed Canadian Union & Ontario Conference Coordinator at the North American Friendship Camporee.
The North American Division leaders presented a program of changing from Pathfinder Federation to Pathfinder Council for conferences. This also introduced plans for the separation of the Pre-Pathfinders from the Pathfinder Clubs to the Children’s Ministry Department, which then became the Adventurer Clubs. David Clarke was appointed as the Canadian Union representative to the NAD Church Ministry Department Committee for the development of the Adventurer Club Program.
The first Constitutional Committee was composed of:
– Janice Maitland
– Donnamae Wright
– Letitia Ince de Rue
– Glen Greer
– David Clarke
The “Pathfinder Council” of the Ontario Conference was formed and its executive board was elected:
– David Clarke, Executive Coordinator
– Ruth Weidner, Secretary
– Letitia Ince de Rue, Treasurer
– Gilbert Correces, Central District Coordinator
– Donnamae Wright, Eastern District Coordinator
– Dorothy Chamberlain, Northern District Coordina- tor
– Russell Lambert, Eliseo Lagazo, Aurora Adap &
Janice Maitland, Area Coordinators
– Glenn Greer, Instruction Coordinator
– Ted Gooden, Drill Master
The Pathfinder Ministry grew to 50 organized clubs and the Adventurer clubs totalled 21.
A total of 91 baptisms were reported by the 50 clubs that year, making it 91 in 91
Russell Lambert, voted in as Executive Coordinator by the Pathfinder constituency.
“Dare to Care” International Camporee, Aug. 2-6, Denver Colorado
“Discover the Power” International Camporee, Oshkosh Wisconsin
“Faith on Fire” International Camporee, Aug. 9-14, Oshkosh Wisconsin
Chris Grant, voted in as Executive Coordinator by the Pathfinder constituency.
Alex Rowe, voted in as Executive Coordinator. Executive Coordinator’s term changed from two years to three years
“Amazin-G-race” Ontario Pathfinder Camporee, Guelph
“Connect dot Com” Pathfinder Fair, Downsview Park
October 18th, OCPC recommended the organization of the Master Guide Ministry under the auspices of the Youth Department
Ontario Conference Pathfinder Council adapted the 2000 uniform changes of NAD
“Courage to Stand” International Camporee, Aug 11-15, Oshkosh Wisconsin. The
Ontario Conference Drum Corps participated in the Opening Ceremonies.
Russell Lambert was voted again by the Pathfinder constituency as Executive Coordinator.
“Anchored in Christ” Ontario Pathfinder Camporee, Guelph
Pathfinder Scholarship conceptualized
Constituency change from six districts to eight districts, namely:
- Metro East
- Metro West
- Metro Central
- Northern Ontario
- Eastern Ontario
- Southwestern Ontario
The Ontario Conference Pathfinder Drum Corps received high praises from the Governor General, Michaëlle Jean, Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Premier Dalton McGuinty & Mayor David Miller at the 28th Annual BBPA Harry Jerome Awards held at the Toronto Congress Centre.
Aug 1-6, the first ever Eastern Canada “Fan the Flame” Pathfinder Camporee held at the Awacamenj Mino Scouts Camp, Duclos, Quebec spearheaded by the Ontario Conference Pathfinder Council. Participating clubs include those from Ontario and Quebec Conferences with guests from Barbados and Jamaica.
“Shine 4 Ever” Ontario Pathfinder Camporee, Guelph
First recipients of the Pathfinder Scholarship grant were Jyssica Delpeche & Michelle Lefleur.
Ontario Conference joins the Pathfinder Bible Experience, NAD’s official Bible testing program for Pathfinders. First team to represent Canada at the NAD level event: Durham Trailblazers from College Park Church
“Back to Eden” Pathfinder Fair, Petticoat Creek, Pickering.
Pathfinder Bible Experience Ontario Conference & SDACC winner: Berea Beacons from Metro East District.
The following Ontario Conference Pathfinder teams advanced to the NAD event:
- Berea Beacons (1st Place)
- Maharlika Team A (2nd Place)
- Durham Trailblazers (1st Place)
“Forever Faithful” International Camporee, Aug 11-16, Oshkosh ,Wisconsin
NAD Pathfinder Bible Experience held at Southwestern Adventist University, Keene, TX
1st Place Winners:
- Metro East – Berea Beacons
- Metro Central – Maharlika Teams A
- Metro Central – Maharlika Team B
- Durham Region – Durham Trailblazers Team A
- Durham Region – Durham Trailblazers Team B
Pathfinders participated in the Operation Clean-up and GLOW tract distribution during the Pan Am Games held in Toronto on July 10-26.
The 2nd Eastern Canada “Refresh / Rafraichir” Pathfinder Camporee was held on August 2-7 at the Awacamenj Mino Scouts Camp, Duclos, Quebec.
ReBOOT CAMPoree held on July 21-25 at Brant Conservation Area, Brantford, ON
Chester Lewis elected on Oct. 15 by the Pathfinder Constituency as OCPC Executive Coordinator with Russell Lambert and Gloria Allen as Asst. Executive Coordinators.
AMP Year of Evangelism
Chosen International Pathfinder Camporee, Oshkosh, WI