Q & a With Mary M. Turner
Mary M. Turner is lead pastor at Calvary Evangelical Missionary
Church in Owen Sound, Ont. She has been pastoring for 13 years.
What is your greatest joy in ministry?
My greatest joy is to witness lives that have been truly
regenerated by the Spirit of God, and who continue to
be transformed as they walk in obedience to the Word
of God. I have no greater delight than to serve those who
have truly been transformed and who are fired up about
living and proclaiming the Good News of Jesus Christ.
I love the Church and I believe in the Church, but I’m
concerned that the Canadian Church has lost her way.
We have made many fans, but few fully devoted followers
of Jesus who love Him so passionately that their delight
is to obey Him completely and follow Him sacrificially,
and to appropriate His grace that transforms us to be
holy as He is holy.
What has been your greatest struggle?
Ministry requires much patience and that we remain
“steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work
of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord our labour is not
in vain” (1 Corinthians 15:58). My greatest struggle has
been to learn to communicate in grace and truth with
those who walk according to the flesh rather than the
Spirit. I continue to be reminded of my desperate need
to be clothed in humility and to appropriate His grace
that is absolutely sufficient in all things.
What is the best theological book you’ve read in the
I really appreciated N. T. Wright’s book After You Believe:
Why Christian Character Matters (HarperOne, 2012). It reveals the Bible’s call for a revolution – a transformation of
character that takes us beyond our earthly pursuit of money,
sex, and power into a virtuous state of living that allows us
to reflect God and live more worshipful and fulfilling lives.
What is your greatest concern for the Canadian
What book is on your nightstand right now?
The Hole in Our Holiness: Filling the Gap between Gospel
Passion and the Pursuit of Godliness by Kevin De Young
What is your best advice for those entering ministry
Remember that it’s about “Christ in you, the hope of
glory” (Colossians 1: 27). Lift Jesus up, preach the pure
Word of God, pray continually, and lead your people to
pray and rely on the power of the Holy Spirit.
What are the specific challenges – and joys – that you
face doing ministry in your specific place in this time?
I love the church in which I’m privileged to serve. Calvary
EMC is becoming a community of grace and truth, and
she is taking seriously the call to live as God’s Kingdom
citizens under the reign of the King of kings and the Lord
of lords. The challenge is to finish the mission Christ began
and to move the church forward on mission so that every
tribe, tongue, and nation hears the gospel and bows their
hearts and bends their knees to King Jesus. FT