July Transitions 2014
Harry Loewen started as English ministry lead pastor at Port Moody (B.C.) Pacific Grace Church Oct. 1, 2013. He graduated from Briercrest, has an MDiv from MBBS, Fresno, Cal., and a DMin from Western Seminary, Portland, Ore. He has previously pastored at First Armenian Presbyterian Church, Fresno; Arnold Community, Abbotsford, B.C.; Eagle Ridge Bible Fellowship, Coquitlam, B.C.; and planted East Ridge Community Fellowship, Maple Ridge, B.C. Harry and Lorraine have 3 married daughters and 9 grandchildren.
Scott Koop began as lead pastor at Highland MB Church, Calgary, May 26, 2014. Originally from Calgary, Scott has a BA in pastoral leadership from Rocky Mountain College, Calgary, and has nearly completed an MA in leadership and ministry from Ambrose Seminary, Calgary. He previously served 5 years as lead pastor in an Evangelical Mennonite church. Scott and Angela have 3 sons.
Jonathan Giesbrecht began as pastor of worship arts and community life at Greendale MB Church, Chilliwack, B.C., July 2, 2014. He has a BA in biblical studies with a minor in worship from Columbia Bible College, Abbotsford, B.C., and has previously served with MB Mission’s TREK program and at Northview Community Church, Abbotsford, B.C., as an intern and part-time staff. He is married to Breanna. Previous director of worship arts Gina Balzer completed her service June 2013.
Doug and Deanna Hiebert departed June 2014 for a 5-year term with MB Mission to equip church leaders and build capacity in Burundi. Doug and Deanna studied at Concord College, Winnipeg; University of Waterloo (Ont.) and Brock University, St. Catharines, Ont. They have both worked as teachers and Mennonite Central Committee area representatives for Africa Great Lakes Region (2003–2008), and Doug served as pastor at Cornerstone Church, Virgil, Ont., 1997–1999 and 2009–2013. They have 3 daughters: Madeline, Keza, Avery.
Youth pastor at Parliament Community Church, Regina, since August 2012, Jimmy Schimmel resigned effective June 2014 to take on the role of director at Katepwa Lake Camp, Fort Qu’Appelle, Sask.
Emmaus Church, Surrey, B.C., held its final gathering Mar. 2, 2014. Members commemorated the ways God used Emmaus church to minister in the Grandview Heights neighbourhood and to help them grow spiritually. The congregation affirmed pastoral teams Dave and Bev Ellis, and David and Alisha McKay for their leadership and blessed them to move forward into new circles of influence. Dave challenged members to be active in new communities of faith, enriched by their experiences at Emmaus. Planted in 2009, Emmaus church met at Pacific Heights Elementary School, Surrey, B.C., with support from the B.C. MB conference and Greendale MB Church, Chilliwack, B.C. The church was not able to achieve financial sustainability.
On a mission to connect with neighbours, City on a Hill, Victoria, met in Jim and Yvonne Mann’s home from 2005–2013, and joined the B.C. conference in 2005. The neighbourhood children were the first to come out, bringing mothers or grandmothers. “We saw people pray for the first time, and together we walked through some of life’s biggest challenges of illness and death,” says Yvonne. “We enjoyed watching people experience a loving God, even expressing their faith in baptisms.” Attendance averaged 12–15 over the years, with a high of 27. By 2012, leaders identified a need for change and decided in 2013 to disband. Members have found homes in a variety of local churches. The Manns are currently part of another neighbourhood church plant meeting in a local community centre.