WHO ARE WE?
The Association for Reformed Political Action (ARPA) Canada is a grassroots Christian political advocacy organization.
The mission of ARPA Canada is to educate, equip, and encourage Reformed Christians to political action, and to bring a biblical perspective to our civil authorities.
ARPA Canada believes that Jesus Christ is sovereign over all, including all civil governments. However, we also uphold the separation of the institutions of church and state. You can find this explained, alongside our other core principles, here.
WHAT DOES ARPA DO EXACTLY?
- Create action items and campaigns for ARPA supporters on issues of concern
- Provide information and support to elected officials in their difficult task of governing our provinces and nation,
- Host conferences to assist youth and adults who desire to take part in the democratic process,
- Organize presentations at churches and schools across the country,
- Intervene at all levels of courts,
- Write for publications like the Supreme Court Law Review and major Canadian newspapers, and much more.
To educate, equip, and encourage Reformed Christians to
and to bring a biblical perspective to our civil authorities.
WHERE DOES ARPA COME FROM?
The Reformed church community has a history of political action and involvement in Canada. Already in the 1970s, local groups formed in churches and became known as ARPAs. These groups functioned independently of each other. In 2000, an effort was made by the Reformed Perspective Foundation to encourage the formation of more local ARPA chapters. In 2007, ARPA Canada was founded as a new national non-profit, with its current mission and vision. At that time it had one part-time employee. We thank and praise God for the immense blessing on this effort in the years since.
By calling ourselves the Association for Reformed Political Action we emphasize two things:
- First, our efforts to educate, equip, and encourage for political action are directed primarily toward Reformed Christians in Canada. However, we are grateful if others can benefit from this work as well.
- Second, in harmony with our Reformed theological tradition, we are grounded on the truth of the Bible.
Click here to read the position paper “The ‘R’ in ARPA: Why ARPA Canada is explicitly ‘Reformed’ and has a particular focus on serving the Reformed community.”
HOW IS ARPA SET UP?
We are registered federally as a non-profit organization, but not as a charity.
ARPA Canada has staff throughout Canada. Our main offices are in southern BC and Ottawa. The organization is under the direction of a board of directors which has members from BC, Alberta, and Ontario.
ARPA Canada also operates the We Need a Law campaign, which has a mission of advancing pre-born human rights through legislation and grassroots action.
We Need A LAWARPA Canada also operates the We Need a Law campaign, which has a mission of advancing pre-born human rights through legislation and grassroots action. Visit weneedalaw.ca
Legal Counsel & Teaching Fellow
André Schutten is ARPA Canada’s Legal Counsel & Teaching Fellow. He researches and writes on public policy, conducts regular analysis on the impact of different government bills and court judgments and lectures regularly on constitutional and legal issues. He also represents ARPA in various court interventions, having made oral or written arguments before the Supreme Court of Canada in four cases and in five provincial courts of appeal.
André has an Honours B.A. in Classics and Religion (McMaster University, 2007), a law degree (University of Ottawa, 2010) and a Master of Laws degree in constitutional law (Osgoode Hall, 2013). He was called to the Ontario Bar in June, 2011. André is thankful for the opportunity to research and write on important legal issues and to have been published in peer-reviewed law journals on issues including freedom of expression, association and religion, equality and disability rights, and constitutional interpretation.
André is a former infantry reservist, an amateur church organist, and a recent muay thai enthusiast. He lives in Ancaster, ON with his wife and three children.
Contact André at [email protected]
Policy Analyst & Editor
Anna joined the ARPA staff as the West Coast Assistant for the We Need a Law campaign in April 2015. She now focuses on policy analysis, writing, and editing for both ARPA and We Need a Law.
Anna completed her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology with a minor in Criminal Justice at Simon Fraser University and the University of the Fraser Valley.
Anna and her husband Carl live in Chilliwack, B.C. with their five children.
Contact Anna at [email protected]
Director of Communications
As Director of Communications, Colin is primarily responsible for the creation, curation, and circulation of all ARPA Canada’s digital and print communications to Reformed Christians and the broader Christian community, the media, and the general Canadian public. Colin also hosts and produces ARPA Canada’s weekly Quick Updates production.
Colin has an Honours Bachelor degree in Political Science and History Double Major which he obtained from McMaster University. His specialization in Canadian History and Politics involved research on such varied topics as Contemporary Security, Aboriginal Politics and History, Canadian Federalism, and early Canadian History.
Prior to joining the staff of ARPA Canada, Colin was involved with the Hamilton Area ARPA group since its inception in 2011 (as board chair for 2014-2015). Colin and his family live in Gatineau.
Contact Colin at [email protected]
Daniel Zekveld joined the ARPA team in March 2021 as a full-time Policy Analyst, with a primary focus on Ontario policy. His responsibilities include research and writing, lobbying, and other forms of policy communications.
Daniel has an Honours Bachelor of Arts in International Relations from Redeemer University and a Certificate of Leadership and Applied Public Affairs from the Laurentian Leadership Centre.
Daniel and his wife Maria live in Ottawa, ON.
Contact Daniel at [email protected]
Director of Grassroots Action
In 2018, Ed Hoogerdyk came on board in Alberta as ARPA’s first ever provincial manager. He made the move from a career in education that spanned 28 years. He last served as principal of Tyndale Christian School in Calgary, AB for sixteen years. His previous teaching experience was in Coaldale, Alberta; Yarrow, British Columbia; Kelmscott, Australia; and Carman, Manitoba before arriving in Calgary.
Ed is responsible for mobilizing our grassroots through effective political action and bringing a solid Christian perspective to members of their provincial legislatures. By God’s grace, it is Ed’s hope and prayer that his experience and passion for education will motivate ARPA’s constituents to boldly and respectfully take a stand for their parental rights to educate their children in God’s ways.
Ed is also the contact person for the grassroots, chapter members, and school clubs in Manitoba.
Contact Ed at [email protected]
Controller & Donor Administrator
As Controller and Donor Administrator, Ella is responsible for the financial management.
Ella has extensive education and experience in government procurement, asset, and contract management. She also has experience in budget management and middle management.
Ella lives in Chilliwack, BC with her husband, 4 children and 5 grandchildren.
Contact Ella at [email protected]
Director of Law & Policy
As Director of Law and Policy, John is responsible for ARPA’s legal and political advocacy. John provides legal advice for ARPA and represents ARPA in court cases and interventions. John works with ARPA’s law and policy team to research, analyze, and advocate on public policy issues from a Christian worldview. John also contributes to ARPA’s publications.
John has represented clients in constitutional and human rights cases before various courts, including the Supreme Court of Canada, the Federal Court, and several provincial appellate courts. John was co-counsel for ARPA in a precedent-setting Charter case in 2016, which struck down an Ontario law that prevented access to abortion-related government data.
John earned a Combined Honours BA in Political Science and Business Administration from Brock University in 2011, a JD from Queen’s University in 2014, and an LLM from Emory University in 2019, where he was awarded the Gertie and John Witte Prize in Law and Religion “for outstanding work in law and Christianity.” John articled with a law firm in Toronto specializing in education law and was called to the Ontario bar in 2015.
John’s writing has appeared in the Supreme Court Law Review, Law Matters, Christian Legal Journal, Policy Options, National Post, Comment, and the C2C Journal, among others. John has served as an adjunct lecturer on human rights at Redeemer University. He is also an Executive Member of Advocates for the Rule of Law, a Canadian legal think tank.
John lives with his wife and daughters in Gatineau. They are members of Resurrection Church (PCA) in Ottawa.
Contact John at [email protected]
Fraser Valley Office Manager & Administrative Assistant
Jolene is primarily responsible for managing ARPA’s Chilliwack office, which includes tracking inventory, maintaining supplies, and performing receptionist duties. Jolene also works on organizing ARPA’s annual and provincial events.
In her role as Administrative Assistant, Jolene works with the Grassroots Action department and ensures they are organized.
Contact Jolene at [email protected]
As ARPA’s British Columbia Manager, Levi Minderhoud specializes in engaging with provincial political issues and educating, equipping, and encouraging Reformed Christians in British Columbia to political action. If you live in BC and you’re looking to get more politically active, Levi is your go-to man!
Prior to joining the ARPA staff in June of 2019, Levi earned a bachelor’s degree from Dordt University in political science, business, and economics and a Master of Public Policy degree from Simon Fraser University. He also spent stints interning for a Member of Parliament, working within the federal civil service, and leading a local ARPA chapter.
Levi, his wife Jillian, and his daughter Aria live in Mission, British Columbia. When off the clock, you’ll find him dabbling in recreational hockey, tickling the ivory, and playing every board and card game imaginable.
Contact Levi at [email protected]
Alberta Administrative Assistant
Lori is primarily responsible for managing ARPA’s Calgary office, which includes tracking inventory, maintaining supplies, and performing receptionist duties. Lori also works on organizing ARPA’s provincial and national events.
In her role as on the Operations Team, Lori makes travel arrangements, maintains records and provides support to the rest of the team.
Lori lives in Calgary, AB with her family.
Contact Lori at [email protected]
Ottawa Office Manager & Administrative Assistant
Lydia is responsible for maintaining ARPA’s Ottawa office and works with the Operations Team to facilitate ARPA’s events and conferences.
Additionally, Lydia provides administrative support to the Communications and Law & Policy teams.
Lydia and her husband Paul live in Ottawa, ON.
Contact Lydia at [email protected]
As Executive Director, Mike is responsible for ensuring that the leadership and management of ARPA Canada are advancing their mission and strategic direction. His primary focus will be to ensure that it remains true to its mission and faithful to the Scriptures. He is also responsible for managing ARPA’s finances and donor relations.
Mike has been featured in Canada’s mainstream media, having been published many times in the National Post, Vancouver Sun, and the Calgary Herald. He also has been interviewed by the National Post, CBC News, CPAC and various radio talk shows across the country. Mike regularly speaks at community events, schools, and churches about euthanasia and abortion, and steps that can be taken to promote justice for vulnerable Canadians who are enduring suffering.
Mike lives in British Columbia with his wife Jennifer and they are the parents of six children, one who has been promoted to his home in heaven with Jesus.
Contact Mike at [email protected]
Prior to joining ARPA Canada in February 2021, Ryan spent over 10 years in marketing and visual communications. During that time the mission was to help clients tell their unique stories by merging truth and beauty in a compelling way – in a way that helped people engage with brands in a more meaningful way.
As Ontario Manager at ARPA Canada, the stories may be different, but the principle is the same. Ryan will look to use the truth and beauty of the gospel to encourage the grassroots Reformed community to engage politically and bring a biblical perspective to our elected officials at the Ontario Legislature.
Ryan, his wife Melanie, and their four children live in Southern Ontario.
Contact Ryan at [email protected]
Director of Operations
Theresa is responsible for ensuring that all of ARPA Canada’s operations have the necessary systems in place to carry out its day-to-day functions. Theresa also heads up facilitating ARPA’s major events as well as the logistical, administrative, office management, and IT needs that are required to support the execution of the mission of ARPA Canada.
Theresa is based in the nation’s capital, Ottawa, ON.
Contact Theresa at [email protected]