29 minute read

Further In and Higher Up

by Layton Friesen Conference Pastor

Who of us would respond, “Are you asking because you care about me, or just because the hospital is paying you to do this?”

Thick Deacon Love I remember hearing a sad lament from a deacon, recently appointed to deacon ministry. When this eager new deacon asked a friend in church to go for coffee, the friend got suspicious and asked, “Are you asking because you’re my friend or because you’re a deacon?”

It’s a disheartening question. This deacon had become a deacon because she loved her church, had a caring way with people, and the church knew her as spiritually mature. Yet now she began to feel that that this position, this title, somehow made her caring work in the church less authentic.

This must be a subtle illusion in our day. We wish the really cool genuine things in life could just happen spontaneously, because we feel like it, with no duty or office a part of it.

Yet it’s also true that whenever we truly believe something is important, we don’t leave the job to spontaneous feelings. We make an office, a duty, or a profession out of it to make sure its done well. No one believes that law enforcement, surgery, flying a plane, or designing a bridge should be left to spontaneous feelings of goodwill.

So, first, if you love teaching kids you might become a teacher. If you like helping sick folks you might become a doctor. If your heart longs to help the poor you might work for MCC. Becoming a teacher, doctor or MCC worker with a salary and title does not somehow diminish

ISTOCK your authenticity. Rather, that is the normal and most sensible vocation to choose if you actually want to do what you feel gifted to do. The same goes for pastors and deacons. If someone is genuinely interested in going deep with people on their spiritual adventure, becoming a pastor or deacon might be perfect.

Second, individuals in the congregation can love each other as friends, yet there is a beautiful form of love by which the congregation comes together and loves someone through a deacon. When a deacon bakes you a casserole, the whole church is there caring for you. Because this deacon has been called, equipped and resourced by the church, the deacon now loves on behalf of your whole congregation. And if this deacon is also your personal friend, both loves are mingled together in a way that no deacon can separate.

Third, a pastor or deacon may be your friend, yet they are also much more than your friend. They are called by God to sit before you interested chiefly in how your life is leading you to Jesus, day by miserable day. This goes beyond how you feel here today to the objective reality of your eternal life with God.

The church has chosen and trained these people to represent God’s design for your life, to speak God’s Word into your life, to help you begin to pray through your life. So when a ministerial member loves you, there is a lot going on. Ordinary friendship, pastoral friendship,

congregational representation, and divine love all mingle together as the coffee flows.

Someone runs into an emergency room shouting for help. A nurse at the desk asks, “Can we help you?” Who of us would respond, “Are you asking because you care about me, or just because the hospital is paying you to do this?” The hospital and the citizens paying taxes care enough about people to provide excellent health care workers in our hour of need.

God and the Church do too.

Kola EMC

Welcome Back, Ernest and Sherridan!

KOLA, Man.—Late spring 2019, after their many years of being away, we welcomed back Ernest and Sherridan Reimer to our congregation. Ernie took the position as part-time pastor and we have been enjoying his leadership and ministry ever since.

In summer 2019, Kristina Lawless, a fairly new attendee of Kola EMC, organized a service project, Backpacks for Chilliwack. Her son is a meth addict living on the streets there so she not only has a heart for the homeless there but knows what would be helpful to have in a backpack. Our church, together with some people from the local community where Kristina is from, collected items and filled almost 30 backpacks. In August, Kristina, her mother and Anna, another woman from our congregation, drove to Chilliwack to share love, backpacks and a message of hope with the people on the streets there. Each backpack included a Bible as well as information on attending a Bible-based community program there.

On Sept. 29, 2019, we celebrated with the parents of six babies as they dedicated them to the Lord. Pastor Ernest Reimer led the service with the deacons praying over the babies and their parents. Our church is greatly blessed with many young families. This November 2019 we collected a record 97 shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child. This ministry is budgeted into our church spending. We have a couple of ladies who buy school and cleansing supplies which we use to fill boxes at a packing party. Then as individuals or families we fill the boxes with other fun items. Nov. 17 was our dedication Sunday.

– Caroline Friesen Sherridan and Pastor Ernest Reimer KEMC

University

CANADIAN MENNONITE UNIVERSITY

Kevin Wiebe GOD’S KINGDOM LIVING IN a practical study guide on the Christian life [ ] Order yours today! Living in God’s Kingdom: a practical study guide on the Christian life is an introduction to the Christian faith, suitable for baptism/ membership and other classes. Lessons include: God and revelation, Jesus Christ and salvation, Holy Spirit

Christian Mennonite Conference 478 Henry St, Steinbach, MB R5G 0J1 www.cmconference.ca and discipleship, the kingdom and the future, church and mission, and Anabap

Evangelical Mennonite Conference 440 Main St, Steinbach, MB R5G 1Z5 www.emconference.ca tist history. A leader’s guide is available.

Evangelical Mennonite Mission Conference/Go Mission! 757 St Anne’s Rd, Winnipeg, MB R2N 4G6 www.gomission.ca To order, contact the conference office.

Rosenort EMC

Dedication and Ordination

ROSENORT, Man.—This past fall included two special services in the life of Rosenort EMC. On October 20, 2019, we celebrated with four couples as they dedicated themselves and their children to the Lord. Families are God’s creation and as a church we stand together to support one another in the raising of our children. Shown are Jared and Jill Dueck with Rylan, Chris and Melanie Siemens with Amelia (and Connor), Alex and Melanie Loewen with Cole (and Thomas), Tim and Rachel Loewen with Emily. Pastor Ward Parkinson officiated.

And in November we witnessed the formal ordination of Scott Dick into the ministry. Scott and Debbie have been part of our congregation for several years, including serving on staff as youth pastor. Now they are following God’s REMC

leading into church planting in the neighbouring community of Ste. Agathe, Man. Conference Pastor Layton Friesen and Director of Church Planting Gerald Reimer were special guests for the ordination service.

– Ward Parkinson

Evangelical Fellowship Church

Seven Children Dedicated

FORT FRANCES, Ont.—On the last Sunday in February 2020, we took some time out in the morning church service to especially dedicate our youngest ones and to bless them in the name of the Lord. There are seven of them with the parents. On the far right are our pastor Alain Reimer, his wife Emily, and their son Micah.

– Mark Gerber EFC

Archives Committee Members and Volunteers Sought

To help preserve and share the stories of Christ’s grace to us through history, the EMC is seeking volunteers to serve on its Archives Committee and other volunteers to assist in its efforts.

The Archives Committee meets about three or four times a year to oversee the EMC Archives, preserve documents, and promote EMC history. Its members get involved in hands-on projects. An appreciation of church history is helpful. The ability to read German is not required, though helpful. Committee members from outside Manitoba could attend meetings by computer or by phone and could assist in collecting materials from their areas to be donated to the EMC Archives.

Volunteers are needed to help organize the archives’ materials in Winnipeg and Steinbach: photographs, file descriptions, filing. Translators (German to English) are very needed. They can be located anywhere. ISTOCK

If this fits you or someone you know, please contact Terry Smith at 204-326-6401 or tsmith@emconference.ca. Thank you.

$15.00

EMC Festival 2020 • July 3–5 Providence University College Otterburne, MB

Thriving in the midst of Turmoil

You prepare a table before me

in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.

Psalm 23:5

Books and a Video Resource from the EMC

Circling the Globe: The Story of the Evangelical Mennonite Conference (2020)– Doris Penner

It takes hard work, patience, and

an abiding interest to write the history of the EMC—ask Doris Penner. The EMC came out of the Kleine Gemeinde, a group which broke away from a larger Mennonite church in 1812 in Russia and came to Canada in 1874-75. She traces the development of part of the KG into the EMC, a church that, at first, moved around I am honoured to recommend Doris Penner’s wonderful new history of the Evangelical Mennonite Conference. Doris loves the Kleine Gemeinde and the EMC that emerged from it, and this affection is obvious. She lovingly traces our life together with honour and respect without hesitating to tell the unvarnished story. In this book we are invited to see with eyes of faith looking backwards. Christians need to live in the past if we are to remain connected to God. We are not afraid to live in the past because it is in our memories that we feel the warm hand of the Father’s gentle guiding. When you read the story by Doris with the eyes of faith, you will see the figure of Jesus emerging not only in the church’s triumphs, but as much in those places where the church needed to repent and go back. I recommend this book as spiritual reading. I thank Doris for giving her church this boundless gift—the gift of the living memory of what God has done. – Layton Friesen, PhD, EMC Conference Pastor Doris Penner, BA, BRS, MSc., has long been interested in the history of the EMC in which she was raised and still serves. She has worked as a teacher and a journalist. She lives in Landmark, Manitoba. CIRCLING THE GLOBE PENNER

Circling the Globe

The Story of the Evangelical Mennonite Conference Doris Penner

the world for religious freedom and, EMC history book cover.indd 1 2020-02-22 5:05 PM

later, expanded its vision to send members around the globe in Christian service. The EMC commissioned the book and guidance was provided by a committee, yet it remains her assessment and her opinions come through. She looks at the EMC’s past and present and ponders the future. Doris is a journalist and a former teacher whose studies have taken her to Steinbach Bible College (BRS) and the University of Manitoba (BA, MSc.). $15, 255 pp.

’Seditions, Confusing, and Tumult’: Why Reformation Europe Thought Anabaptism Would Destroy Society (2019) – Layton Friesen When Layton Friesen grew up as the son of an EMC pastoral couple, he was puzzled by how Anabaptists were mistreated in the sixteenth century. If, as he was told, the Anabaptist movement was the high point in the Protestant Reformation, why were Anabaptists opposed so bitterly? He thought he was not being told all of the story. At Regent College, while engaged in its Master of Theology program, he spent a year studying why Anabaptists were so opposed in much of Reformation Europe, seeking to understand them, not to refute them nor to justify what happened to Anabaptists. He began to understand Anabaptism better. It presented challenges to society then and he believes it can challenge society today. Layton, an ordained minister, is the EMC conference pastor. His studies led him to Steinbach Bible College (BRS), Regent College (MCS, ThM), and the University of St. Michael’s College, Toronto (PhD in systematic theology). $10, 165 pp. Available from the EMC national office and Amazon.ca.

Video Series: An Introduction to Deacons Ministry (2020) – Darryl G. Klassen Is your congregation seeking deacons, looking at the role of deacons, or considering ways to help deacons succeed? This free resource, put out by Dr. Darryl G. Klassen with the support of the EMC, is designed to assist with this. The four-part video series looks at deacons: their role, qualifications, visitation and active listening skills. The video teaching times are brief and a short leader’s guide assists with questions to guide discussion. The video series and the discussion guide are available forfree download at Under the Fig Tree Ministries (utft.ca). Darryl, an ordained EMC minister, observed deacons while serving as a pastor at Crestview and Kleefeld. He is now engaged in a ministry of preaching, teaching, and writing. He has studied at Steinbach Bible College (BRS) and Providence Theological Seminary (MACS, DMin). His DMin study focused on the history and role of deacons. Free Download at utft.ca

Holy Wanderings: A Guide to Deeper Discipleship (2019)

Your church holds classes for young people and adults interested in the Christian faith, baptism, and mem

A TRI-CONFERENCE STUDY GUIDE

HOLY WANDERINGS A Guide to Deeper Discipleship

bership. After

attending Christianity 101, Christian Foun

Holy Wanderings cover concepts.indd 4 2018-10-18 12:57 PM

dations, or Baptism and Membership Class, what do they study? Here is one answer: a 13-lesson guide that looks at following Jesus together.It has chapters on the Bible and authority, the Bible and interpretation, Christians and worship, the role of the local church, an effective devotional life, stewardship and simple living, the Christian and vocation, everyday evangelism, a look at leadership, faith and culture, Christians and conflict, continuing and commending belief, and pilgrimage—a long, shared journey.Quotes, questions, and sidebar items assist discussion. It is produced jointly by the CMC, EMMC, and EMC. Most of the writers come from within the three conferences, yet outside expertise has also been called upon. $5, 125 pp.

The books are available from the EMC National Office.

Circa 1922. In 1922, MCC sent two shipments of 25 tractors to Mennonite settlements in Russia that were devastated by famine. MCC PHOTO

100 Years of MCC: Compelled by Christ to Serve

by Laura Kalmar

“ A t the railroad stations, the sight was appalling. The moment the train halted it was besieged by living skeletons. From out of the rags were lifted bare arms, the wasted fingers extended toward the car windows in entreaty for food. “‘Bread, in God’s name, bread!’” These were the words of A.J. Miller, penned in southern Russia (present-day Ukraine) in 1920. Thousands were suffering in the wake of the Russian revolution. Violence, pillage, hunger, disease…death. Mennonites in Canada and the U.S. heard the pleas of their distant cousins.

“What can be done?” they asked. Mennonite groups knew they would need to work together to accomplish the daunting task ahead. But inter-Mennonite cooperation had always been hindered by differences in theology, practice, culture and language. It was hard to imagine a jointly owned effort.

Nevertheless, the biblical call was clear: “As we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers” (Gal. 6:10 NIV). There was no choice other than to respond—to be the hands and feet of Jesus to strangers. To become the living gospel. Five Mennonite denominations agreed to form a temporary “central” committee to gather and distribute relief supplies. MCC was born. It was Sept. 27, 1920.

Not surprisingly, this fledgling agency faced obstacles. Clayton Kratz, one of the first three workers sent by MCC to oversee the MCC PHOTO/D.R. HOEPPNER In this 1923 photo from Platovka, Russia, Mennonites load wagons with boxes of American milk.

Supplies were lacking for village schools like this one in Svay Rieng Province in 1981. .MCC PHOTO BY FRED KAUFFMAN

relief efforts, was arrested by the Red Army and disappeared without a trace. Delays in food shipment meant the first relief kitchens couldn’t open until March 1922. And the local government insisted MCC clothe and feed all people in need, not only Mennonites.

These beginnings indelibly shaped the work of MCC.

For 100 years MCC has upheld the clear and urgent call to help those in need—regardless of nationality, race or creed. We have been a “big tent” under which Mennonites and Brethren in Christ (now known in Canada as Be in Christ) have gathered to work together toward a common mission. And our service has been influenced by a spirit of generosity, tenacity and sacrifice. Beyond Relief Corn meal, dark bread and warm cocoa. These were the life-saving rations fed to starving families in the MCC relief kitchens run by Jacob and Anna Funk. Carefully measured calories. The Funks were part of the masses who knew hunger. They had been forced to sell their wedding rings to buy food, sometimes eating meals of roasted gophers or crows. Anna and Jacob said they felt guilty when they received double rations of food. But they knew they needed strength for the strenuous work of overseeing the kitchens. By May 1922, MCC was feeding up to 25,000 people daily.

The following year MCC began its first development work, shipping 25 Fordson tractors and plows to help farmers plant and harvest new crops. But, for many, this Nadine Ens and daughter Jenice Ens tie knots in a comforter at The Great Winter Warm-up in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. MCC PHOTO/MYRIAM ULLAH

1923–1930, some 20,000 Mennonites came to Canada with the help of CMBC and CP Rail.

wasn’t enough to secure a future in the region. It was time to migrate. And so MCC began the work of assisting refugees and immigrants— thousands to Central America, Canada and other locations.

The focus on displaced people has been another hallmark of MCC’s work over the past century. Shaped by the biblical call to hospitality and “welcoming the stranger” (Matt. 25:35), MCC has coordinated immigration efforts. We have also worked with communities to provide relief and support for people living in places they don’t call “home.”

Often, this work has led us into the halls of Canadian power. In 1922, the Canadian Mennonite Board of Colonization (CMBC, which later became part of MCC Canada) met with Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King, securing a place for thousands of Mennonites hoping to immigrate to Canada.

At the same time, CMBC negotiated an agreement with the Canadian Pacific Railway (CP Rail) for those families to travel on credit, rather than paying their fares up front. Between Celebrating 100 Years A century later, the work of relief, development and peace in the name of Christ continues. There is still much to be done. The need to bring Christ’s love and hope to people around the world is as urgent as ever. The number of displaced people has reached record highs, and a cry for bread still rings in the air. The need to work together remains. In that spirit, we invite you to help us celebrate our centennial. There are opportunities to give a gift--large or small—to help us expand our work with displaced people. There are events, reunions and online communities

where you can read more amazing stories, and even share your own MCC story. Please go to mcccanada.ca/centennial to discover all the ways you can get involved. We are grateful for God’s leading over the past century. We are grateful for faithful and generous supporters who have journeyed with us. And we are grateful the “temporary” committee formed back in 1920 endures today. Laura Kalmar is associate director of communications and donor relations for MCC Canada. Two more articles will appear throughout 2020. Amal Abujayyab, Shergo Ibrahim, Donna Entz and Sedra Mustafa work on a comforter together at The Great Winter Warm-up event in Edmonton, Alta. MCC PHOTO/DONITA WIEBE-NEUFELD

Susie Thiessen (nee Peters) 1930-2019

Susie Thiessen passed away suddenly after a short illness at the Health Sciences Centre in Winnipeg, Man., at age 89. God granted her dearest wish to be with Himself and her husband Peter for Christmas.

Susie was born on Sept. 29, 1930, in Aberdeen, Sask., to Peter and Helena Peters. The family moved to Swan Plan, Sask., to homestead. Mom was the youngest girl with five older sisters and three younger brothers: Mary (Jake) Klassen; Helen (Dave) Doell; Betty (Jim) Aimoe; Kate (Peter) Klassen; Eva (George) Giesbrecht; Peter (Helen) Peters; Jake (Mary) Peters; and Bill (Betty) Peters.

When her Dad passed away in 1937, it became impossible to keep the homestead. The family was moved to Chortitz, Man. She and her sisters hoed beets and picked potatoes in the U.S. before she worked in Manitoba as a housekeeper.

Then she met the love of her life, Peter J. Thiessen, and they were married on July 20, 1952. They had 66 years together. Their honeymoon consisted of driving from their wedding reception to Brandon North, Dad’s place of work with the CNR.

Dad’s work with the CNR saw

them move around Manitoba, but they finally settled by farming in the Mayfeld area. Mom chose to stay at home to raise her children. Mom took on much responsibility for the farm and the children while Dad was away with the CNR and on various jobs. She always had a large garden. After most of the children had left home, Mom worked in home care for 15 years, which she loved.

She served God in various other ways, cooking at camp, working at MCC, and church cleaning. She was known for her hospitality, and the joke was that when she saw company turn onto their farm driveway, she could wash the floor and make a meal by the time they were at the door. She brought chicken noodle soup, her stand-by, to sick people. She enjoyed making confetti cake, which Pastor Colin Bell appreciated.

Her favourite restaurant was Joey’s Only because of the fish. She enjoyed travelling north to see Terry and Mary Ann in Creighton, Sask., with a van filled with grandchildren and food for a week. She enjoyed fishing in northern Saskatchewan.

Mom was connected with the Old Colony Church as a child, with the Mayfeld EMMC until it closed, Beautiful Plains Baptist, Carberry Evangelical Free, Austin Evangelical Fellowship (EMMC), and Portage Evangelical Church. She was deceased by her parents; her husband Peter and son Larry; two grandchildren, Darrell and Desiree; as well as by numerous siblings and in-laws.

She leaves to mourn her passing her children, Mary Ann (Terry) Smith, Beverly (Leonard) Funk, daughter-inlaw Debbie Thiessen, Jerry (Sherry) Thiessen, Randy Thiessen, Karen (Ken) Nicholls, and Laura McLeod; grandchildren and great grandchildren, Cory (Dana) Thiessen, Ella, Owen and Hazel; Marcie (Jeff) Rudyk, Riley and Joshua; Kristen Funk, Tarryn and Noah; Tracy (Kyle), Sierra, Avery, and Michael; Jonathan Smith; Derek Custer; Peter, Patricia, Chantel Thiessen; Alex (Colleen), Asley (Curtis), Riley, Lucas, Lexi; Kass Nicholls; Kenneth McLeod, Huxley; Tessa (Paul); Laurie McLeod, Bailey, Brooklyn; as well as many extended family and friends.

The funeral service of Susie Thiessen was held on Dec. 13, 2019, at MacGregor EMC with Pastors Colin Bell, Les Kroeker, and Terry Smith officiating. Interment followed in the Sommerfeld Cemetery, Austin.

Mom truly believed that, “For me to live is Christ and to die is gain” (Phil. 1:21). She gave of herself to all around her, and we can only imagine her joy in the presence of the Lord her God.

– Her Family VOLUNTEER WITH MDS! 800-241-8111 mds.mennonite.net JOIN US as individuals or groups for a week or more to help others in need. Serve with a positive and Christ-like heart, using your trade skills or learning new skills on the job.

Melvin Koop 1936-2020

Melvin Koop, 83, of Steinbach, Man., passed away on Thursday, Jan.16, 2020, peacefully surrounded by his family at Bethesda Regional Health Centre, Steinbach, Man.

Dad was born on Nov. 25, 1936, the third oldest of seventeen children. He married our mother, Mary Fast, on Sept. 12, 1959, in the Kleefeld EMC. They spent over 60 years together

God be the

Glory to

100 Join us in Celebrating Years

Prairie Rose EMC 100 th Anniversary June 13 th & 14 th 1920-2020 DE

and had five sons: Howard (Jane), Barry (Traci), Myron (Susan), Conroy (Sheila), and Garth (Carly). Dad pastored churches in Creighton-Flin Flon, Winnipeg, Steinbach, Abbotsford, Swift Current, Anola, Mennville, and Morris.

As a young man Dad work at Schellenberg’s grocery store, in the Virden oil fields, Coldstream Refrigeration and Barkman Concrete (Winnipeg).

Dad dedicated his life to Christ at 18. Shortly after, he enrolled at Steinbach Bible Institute where he felt a calling to ministry and started dating our Mom, Mary Fast. Their initial plan was to go into foreign missions. However, Dad’s health issues then prevented them from traveling overseas. Instead they went north to Creighton-Flin Flon to plant the Northern Fellowship Chapel. There, the two oldest sons were born.

After five years in Creighton-Flin Flon, Dad and Mom moved to Winnipeg for Dad to study at Mennonite Brethren Bible College and pastor the emerging Crestview Fellowship Church. Their next two sons were added to the family. These were busy times for Dad with four boys, attending college, pastoring a church, and tarring roofs to supplement his income. His sense of purpose and passion for the church kept him motivated.

In 1971, Dad accepted the youth pastor position at Steinbach EMC. Soon after moving to Steinbach, their fifth son was born. Christian Youth Fellowship retreats at Camp Jubilee, flea markets, prison ministry and Tuesday night Bible studies built a strong community for the young people. Dad was involved in the community, coaching his sons’ hockey teams and volunteering as a parole officer.

Later, Dad spent five years as the Manitoba and Saskatchewan Regional Rep for World Vision. Dad accepted the senior pastor position at the Grace EMB Church in Abbotsford in 1981, where he had a highly effective outreach in the community. In 1986 the Steinbach EMC invited him back as associate pastor, and he was engaged in this ministry for thirteen years.

Retirement in 1999 was short-lived. Dad served in a series of interim pastoral positions: Swift Current, Anola, Mennville and Morris. Dad had a passion for reading and was disciplined with his daily devotions, prayer life, scripture memorization and physical exercise. One of Dad’s great athletic achievements was running the Manitoba Marathon at age 70.

Dad was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2018. As his memory deteriorated, Mom was always ready to help. Her love, kindness and patience were honouring and respectful toward Dad all his life and especially in his last years.

Dad leaves to mourn his loving wife Mary, five boys and their spouses, twenty grandchildren and nine greatgrandchildren, seven brothers, eight sisters, and a large extended family. He was predeceased by his brother John. The memorial service was held on Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020, at 2 p.m., at Steinbach EMC. We as a family are grateful to the staff at Bethesda Regional Health Centre for caring for Dad in the last month.

– His Family

Helen B. Loewen, aged 98, of Rosenort, Man., passed away peacefully into the presence of Jesus on Nov. 9, 2019, at the Morris General Hospital. Helen was born on March 2, 1921, in Gnadenthal, South Russia. Due to political unrest and advancing persecution her parents were forced to start a new life in Canada, settling in southern Manitoba. As the oldest of nine children and having a mother who was deaf, Mom picked up many family responsibilities early in life.

Prior to marriage, she worked seasonal jobs, picking potatoes, assisting as a harvest hand and as a nanny. She took a seamstress course, advancing her love of sewing. She also worked as a cook at the Winkler Bethel Hospital and MCI, Gretna. As head cook, feeding 70 hungry teen boys with about 60 buns and a few dozen eggs, she was pushed to be creative with the resources she had been given.

Following a short courtship in the Spring of 1949, she married John B. Loewen on July 17, 1949. Dad was a widower with one daughter, Elsie. Mom learned to be a wife Helen R. Loewen (nee Peters) 1921-2019 and a mother to Elsie all at the same time. Mixed in with their first year of marriage were the 1950 flood and the birth of their first child. Life on the farm was full of responsibilities, which Mom accepted with joy and enthusiasm.

Grieving the deaths of two infant sons was always expressed to her family as the profound ways of God. When Dad took ill with Parkinson’s disease while she was in her late 40s, she did her best to serve and live above the circumstances. She accepted these experiences as God’s grace to her that could be passed on to others.

She was baptized on the confession of her faith when she was 20 years old. Her personal love and commitment to God was real and so profound that she rarely could pray without tears streaming down her face in gratitude. She taught Sunday School, attended prayer meetings, sewed blankets and quilts for MCC, and showed hospitality towards missionaries and cross-cultural friends. She attended church faithfully and would want you to know that following Jesus gave her joy and deep meaning in life.

Mom moved into the Rosenort Rosebay apartments in the fall Together we’re celebrating 100 years of relief, development and peace in the name of Christ. Thank you for your support of MCC. Join the centennial celebrations! mcccanada.ca/centennial

of 1992. In August 1997 she made another move (same building) to the Heritage Assisted Living Units. Special thanks to Roselane, Rosebay, Riverstone and Heritage community for the wonderful kindness you showed her, especially in her final years.

She is survived by four daughters, Elsie Dueck, Luella Giesbrecht (Jacob), Amanda Peters (Dennis), and Naomi Dueck (Lawrence); one son, Paul Loewen (Melody); 14 grandchildren, 26 great-grandchildren, and one great-great-grandchild; three sisters and one brother. Helen was predeceased by her husband John B. Loewen, two children in infancy, her son-in-law Edwin Dueck, three sisters and one brother.

Her funeral was held on Nov. 21, 2019, at the Rosenort EMC.

“As for me, I will always have hope; I will praise you more and more. My mouth will tell of your righteous deeds, of your saving acts all day long—though I know not how to relate them all . . . Even when I am old and grey, do not forsake me, my God, till I declare your power to the next generation, your mighty acts to all who are to come” (Psalm 71:14-18).

– Her Family

With any applications for EMC church pastoral positions, candidates are expected to also register a Ministry Information Profile with the EMC Board of Leadership and Outreach, which can be obtained through Erica Fehr, BLO Administrative Assistant, at efehr@emconference.ca or 204-326-6401.

Additional EMC Openings

Often there are more churches looking for senior, associate, youth, and interim pastors than are identified on this page. For information on additional openings, contact Conference Pastor Layton Friesen (lfriesen@emconference.ca) and Director of Youth and Discipleship Gerald D. Reimer (greimer@emconference.ca). The national office phone number is 204-326-6401. Talk with Erica Fehr, Church leadership assistant to the BLO, to request a cell number for a particular person.

EMC Positions*

Oak Bluff Bible Church is seeking a full-time pastor. We are a welcoming, family-friendly church that averages 50 people on Sunday morning. We enjoy contemporary and traditional worship music. We understand the importance and value of ministering together to be a light in reaching our growing community and surrounding area of Oak Bluff, Man. (located at McGillvray and the Perimeter Highway of Winnipeg). Applicants must be in acceptance of the OBBC (EMC) Statement of Faith and aligning with the theology, values, and church culture of OBBC. A valid criminal records check and child abuse check are required for this position. Applicants must be legally entitled to work in Canada. Preference will be given to those who are willing to relocate to Oak Bluff or the surrounding community. To apply or for future inquiries, please e-mail pastoralsearch@oakbluffbiblechurch.com.

Picture Butte Mennonite Church, a Low Germanand English-speaking church with 200-plus people attending dual Sunday morning services, is seeking an associate pastor. The ideal candidate should be characterized by an attitude of servant leadership and personal integrity in a close walk with Jesus. The candidate needs to have an openness and sensitivity to the diverse cultural differences within our Mennonite church. This position would primarily focus on the English ministry. This candidate needs to be a team player as he will be working alongside the existing leadership team as well as the senior pastor. For information, contact Isaac Thiessen, 403- 308-5093 or isaact@genicadev.com

Other Positions

Mennonite Church Manitoba invites applications for Executive Minister. The Executive Minister will inspire and lead congregations and pastors across MCM. Primary areas of responsibility include: promoting congregational vibrancy and spiritual health; strategic planning; leading the MCM staff team in implementing MCM’s vision and mission, and relating to MC Canada. Preferred qualifications: love for Christ and the church; strong team builder; excellent listener and communicator; spiritual leadership experience; demonstrated commitment to Anabaptist theology. For a more detailed position description and information on how to apply please visit the MC Manitoba website: mennochurch.mb.ca.

Where are position ads to be sent?

Please send all position ads, including pastoral search ads, to messenger@emconference.ca. All ads are to be 150 words or less. All ads can be edited. Please advise us when it is no longer needed.

Calendar

Manitoba

June 18 Project Builders Golf Tournament Steinbach, Man July 3-5 Festival 2020 (EMC Convention) Steinbach, Man

Evangelical Mennonite Conference Year to Date Financial Report January – February, 2020 General Fund 2019 General Fund 2020 Income* 178,463 221,846 Expenses 262,674 302,540 Excess/Shortfall -84,211 -80,694 We give thanks to God for the continued strong support of EMC ministries, and we acknowledge the contributions of EMC churches and individuals who give so generously.

- The Board of Trustees

*Income includes donations and transfers from other funds (e.g., estate funds).