Stephen Michels

Pastor of Discipleship

"Growing and seeking
to know Christ more

“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” It was this message along with the rest of scripture that brought me, at six years old, to recognize my need for Christ.

My parents had come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ not long before and the profound change in their lives, their eagerness to grow in grace, and their passion to share the good news of the Gospel with their children led to each of us putting our trust in the finished work of Christ for our salvation. Growing up, my whole family was learning as disciples together, with each new truth being shared and lived out at home. Prayer, the knowledge of God’s Word, and living out our transformed lives in the context of service were part of the fabric of our culture.

Entering into my teen and young adult years, I was surrounded by older mentors and peers who were all growing and seeking to know Christ more, and this was such a powerful influence on every aspect of my life, helping to carry me through many challenges.

I have been blessed to have been called to serve Christ in a number of capacities: in Christian camping ministry, as a Sunday school teacher, a retreat and conference speaker, a Christian school teacher, a pastor, a director of children’s ministry, and currently as the pastor of discipleship at StoneRidge Fellowship.

It is my desire that every person know Christ in His fullness, experience Christ in His richness, and live in Christ in His sufficiency. My prayer echoes that of the Apostle Paul in the Epistle to the Ephesians:

"I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God." - Ephesians 3:16-19

More about Stephen

“The brothers immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea, and when they arrived they went into the Jewish synagogue. Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.” [Acts 17:10-11 ESV]

In the above passage, the writer of Acts commends the Bereans because they examined the Scriptures daily to see if the things Paul and Silas were teaching were true. When they knew it was true, they could embrace it fully and without fear. This picture has always moved me to pursue discipleship in the church. The only way to determine truth and embrace it, is by becoming a diligent student of God’s Word in full dependence on the Holy Spirit. It is my desire at StoneRidge that every believer would grow in understanding of the Word of God and would know how to apply it in daily living. In an age of biblical illiteracy, it is more critical than ever to encourage and equip people to study the Bible or themselves. At StoneRidge, this is accomplished through the ministry of small groups, dedicated men’s and women’s studies, special topic classes, and through resources being made available to help individuals grow and mature.

I joined the ministry team at StoneRidge bringing with me a variety of ministry experiences and skills. I hold undergraduate degrees in English and education, and a master of arts degree in educational ministries. I taught for 10 years at the Halifax Christian Academy in the junior/senior high school in the areas of English, history, Bible and drama. I also served in an administrative support role and as the director of student services during this time. From HCA, I was called to pastor the Fall River Baptist Church where I was ordained and served as pastor for eight years. Just before coming to StoneRidge, I worked in several different roles in the Faculty of Computer Science at Dalhousie University, first as the undergraduate administrator (term) then as the administrative assistant to the faculty in the Dean’s Office. During my time at Dalhousie, I was also invited to work part-time as a teaching assistant, evaluating student assignments and presentations, giving feedback and teaching the oral presentation component of the professional communications course. I started at StoneRidge as the director of children’s ministry, before being asked to serve as the pastor of discipleship in the fall of 2016. I continue my involvement in the broader Christian community through speaking engagements at local Christian camps, and homeschooling events. I currently serve on the school board of the Halifax Christian Academy and give consulting advice in the area of governance to the board of directors of Malagash Bible Camp, where I have worked and volunteered in a variety of capacities over the past 30 years. I have been married to my wife Samantha for 20 years. We have been blessed with three amazing children. Samantha and the children are the main focus of my time when I'm not ministering at StoneRidge.

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