Products & Servicescrack
Alphabetical Listing
Forms and Documents
Interactive
Resources & Training
Church Health
Leadership Development
Reaching Out
Finance
Kindred Productions
Publications
Theology
Tools for the local church
Christian Press
Centre for Mennonite Brethren Studies
Mennonitische Rundschau Index
Canadian Conference of MB Churches
General Conference of MB Churches
John A. Toews Library
Katie Peters Genealogical Collection
MB Provincial Conferences and Churches
British Columbia Archives
British Columbia Provincial Archives
Alberta Archives
Saskatchewan Archives
Manitoba Archives
Ontario Archives
Quebec Archives
Maritimes Archives
Periodicals and newspapers
Other Mennonite and MB Organizations
About the Centre for MB Studies
Links to Related Sites
Archival Holdings
Theological Resources
Text To Terabyte Project
Mennonite Mirror
Festival Quarterly
Odessaer Zeitung
Mennonite Reporter
Sophia
PrintShareText Size:Small TextMedium TextLarge Text
 

1943–1998.
2 cm of textual records. – 1 photo.


Administrative history

Willow Park Church in Kelowna, British Columbia started in 1947 by Mennonite immigrants who had come from the Soviet Union after the Second World War. They had been worshipping with the Grace Baptist Church. The Mennonites elected a temporary leadership team for their Sunday meetings. The 32 members organized the Kelowna Mennonite Brethren Church. Rev. John Unger was confirmed as leader, Peter Janzen as assistant leader and Sunday school superintendent, Cornelius Janzen as treasurer, Aaron Willms as Missions treasurer and Abram Schellenberg as secretary.

Services for this new church were initially held in the home of Herman Goertzen and later in rented halls in the city. By 1947 a church building was under construction with volunteer help. By January 18, 1948 services began in the basement and by 1963 the switch from German services to English worship services had taken place.

In 1966 a new building was built to seat over 430 people and provide needed educational space. In 1985 a new church known as Project Willow Park was undertaken and was ready for occupancy in October 1988. With the move to a new location came the new name of Willow Park Church.

The church continued to grow. The church responded with two morning services starting in 1992 and started a church plant in the Glenmore area in 1995 known as the Garden Valley Community Church.

Membership at the church in 1950 stood at 63 members; in 1965, 120; in 1975, 195; in 1985, 260; in 1993, 376; in 2000, 488.

Leaders of the congregation include John J. Unger (1947–1953), John J. Wiebe, (1953–1956), Abe Sawatsky (1956–1962), Ed J. Lautermilch (1962–1966), John D. Stoesz (1966–1973), Ed Wiebe (1974–1979), Jake H. Quiring (interim 1980), Lloyd Pankratz (1981–1982), Herb J. Brandt (1984–1988), Ed Boschman (1989–1995), Mark Burch (1997– ).

Associate pastors include Russell Toews (1982–1986), Kevin Graeme (1987–1988), Nick Kroeker (1988–1990), Mel Dick (1989), Arnold Peters (1989– ), Dan Geddert (1990–1992) Ramsy Unruh (1992–1998), Roxanne Collie (1994–1997), Randy Benson (1994–2002), Larry Plett (1998–2002), Ellen Huebert (2002– ), Tim Van Brummeln (2002– ), Joel Feddersen (2002– ), Angel Fehr (2005– ), Mike Penninga (2005– ), Dave Goertz (2005– ), Henry Sawatzky (2006– ), Brian Penner (2006– ).

Scope and content
This fonds consists of a historical sketch, 50th anniversary historical reflection booklet, bulletins and newsletters.

Custodial history
It is unclear when the textual materials came to the archives. The historical sketch was provided to the archives in 1985.

Notes

Textual file list

Volume 369 Date
1. Historical Sketch. 1943–1985
2. 50th Anniversary Historical Reflections. 1943–1997
3. Bulletins and Newsletters. 1991–1993
4. Bulletins and Newsletters. 1994
5. Bulletins and Newsletters. 1996
6. Bulletins and Newsletters. 1997
7. Newsletters. 1998
8. Newsletters. 1999–2001