Ok, maybe not, but today we felt like royalty. We visited a castle!
At the recommendation of Grant, we went to Casa Loma today.
The castle was constructed over a three-year period from 1911-1914. It belonged to Sir Henry Pellatt. He was a pioneer in Canadian stock exchange, electricity, and many other risky but (mostly) lucrative investments.
The castle had 98 rooms, a stable, pool, and garage.
There were tunnels connecting the castle to the stables:
The grounds also contained a greenhouse, extravagant gardens and conservatories.
The castle cost approximately 3.5 million dollars to build and was never finished by Sir Pellatt. Because of the World War and some unfortunate financial downturns, Sir Pellatt was only able to live in the castle for ten years before the bank reclaimed it.
The story really was depressing, but it reminded me of the following verse:
Matthew 6:19 “Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. 20Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. 21 Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be."
I'm thankful for the security we have in Jesus.
This afternoon, we took a little time to rest before heading to José's apartment for an early dinner.
We learned a lot about José, his wife (Regina), and their ministry.
Prior to coming to Toronto, José and his wife served in a Portuguese-speaking church plant in Orlando, Florida. They spent eight years at that church - growing it from five people to over one-hundred.
He felt God pulling him away from that ministry, but he wasn't sure where to go. He and Regina prayed and spent a few years in limbo - living completely on faith, but eventually were led here to Toronto. They have been in Toronto since late-spring this year.
Currently, they are spending much of their time in the same way as many American church-planters; they spend time in Dunkin Donuts, the mall, and other local "hang outs." They are different from U.S. church planters, however, because of the fact that they sit in these establishments and listen quietly until they hear people speaking Portuguese!
They were very excited about a few Brazilian couples they had met at the mall yesterday. Please pray for these brief, simple, but potentially life-changing encounters.
Tonight, Regina made us a delicious Brazilian dinner consisting of pork, beans, collard greens, rice, and lettuce.
It was yummy! We have eaten SO well on this trip...
Following dinner, we returned to the church for night four of VBS!
We had twenty kids tonight - the two new ones are visiting from Bermuda though, so not really potential church members...
Tonight, the kids learned that Jesus loves us, no matter what! We received a lesson from a beautiful woman (from Ghana?), named Elizabeth. She and her husband, Randolph, taught that even though Peter denied Jesus three different times, when he asked for forgiveness, Jesus gave it to him. As my husband, the Reverend, always says, "It doesn't matter what you've done or where you've been, it matters where you're going."
It's an important lesson for us all!
Some photos from tonight:
These are Grant's twin sons, David and Graham: