Collage of Nupur's Ministry at TEMC

How does it feel as you prepare to leave TEMC?

I feel a lot of emotions. First it was bittersweet, then straight-up sad, and now I’m back to bittersweet. I’ve had an amazing time here. Now it’s time to go and do other things, to better myself and my career. So it’s a bittersweet time for me.

What are you proudest during your six years here?

A lot of things! I’m mostly proud to see how these young people have grown up. I’ve known some of them since they were in grade 4 or 5. Now that they’re young adults, I’m proud of the way they have grown up, and the way they talk to me and to their elders. I am so proud that they all feel like TEMC is home. They can come here and express their doubts, their questions, and their faith. I am proud that I was part of creating that culture at our church.

What are you most excited about in your next steps?

I am most proud that I get to finally be a pastor. I know I’ve been pastoring, but now I do get a title as well. I came to Canada with the mindset to be a pastor. Coming from India, from a different denomination with a different scenario for women in leadership, I felt God called me to be in that role. I firmly believe God has called each one of us for our own unique gifts, and I’ve long felt this was something God wanted me to do. I’m finally ready to be ordained and live that life of service.

How does Aaron feel about being a pastor’s spouse?

He’s a fantastic pastor’s husband! He’s so polite, he helps out in everything, and he’s so supportive. I’m so grateful God brought me someone like him. Even when just talking getting to know each other, one thing that drew me to him is he would always say “I want you to reach places I can’t. I will always lift you up in prayer to do that.” His humility, the service he offers toward me and the congregation I serve—I really look up to it. He’s going to be fantastic.

What departing word of wisdom do you have for TEMC?

We say this is “a place for life.” I hope we constantly create that for our next generation. We also need to involve them in decision-making about the way we want our church to go. They might not understand some things, but certain things they do. Their voice matters. We do include our young people now, but I’d like to see that happen more. I’d like our church to be a place where faith and legacies are passed on.

Talk about how you’ve matured during your time here.

Six years ago, I’d just graduated from Tyndale. After I came for the interview I called my family and told them, “There’s no way I’ll get hired. This is a big church and denomination. I think they want someone with much more experience.” Within the week I was called for another interview, and I was in awe that I got an opportunity.

In these six years I grew a lot as a leader in my confidence and faith. I had great support from Rev. Lori, Dr. Stirling, and now with you. Having good leadership helped me explore things. I had so much to learn! I’d never worked full-time or in a bigger congregation. I got so much experience in ministry. It gave me the confidence I needed. Lori will always say, “You need to live into your authority.” I try to remember that and be more assertive. It’s one thing to be a team-player; another to let people walk all over you.

Two of the most unique things about you are that you studied aeronautical engineering and that you have a twin—tell us about each.

Growing up with a twin was the most amazing thing. I miss Payal dearly. A lot of the most important things in our lives have happened together: coming to faith, then faith becoming stronger. Even now that I’m serving in Canada, she’s serving back in India, and we have lots of conversations about our faith, church, ministry, and how to be a good leader. She helps me a lot. She’s a half-hour older than me, and she doesn’t let me forget that. She’s one of those people who can tell me, “Nah, don’t do it, it’s not ok.” When we were younger, we tricked so many people, even our teachers. We changed seats during exams, but our parents told our teacher. Aaron is a twin too. He understands that bond and friendship.

I loved airplanes so much that I wanted to be a pilot, but I’m short, so the next best thing was to study about them. I absolutely loved it. I love science. Even in my faith, I’m more interested in how I can apply knowledge. I think it comes from my engineering mind: "Ok, how does this work?" Those four years studying aeronautics were very formative in my life. In India you can’t often talk about faith, you have to live it. That helped prepare me to come to Canada. The 18 or 19 year-old Nupur and the 23 year-old Nupur were two different girls.

Do you have a final word of wisdom for us?

Let’s not forget our faith legacy and let’s keep on living it. I hope that more than anything we love each other and welcome everybody and know who we are in Christ.

Watch this slideshow of moments throughout the years with Nupur

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