Thank you to those who partnered with us through Project 2012Kick Start 2 in assisting in the launching of several new church plants in 2012.
In total, $133,000 was received towards the project.
The following churches benefitted from your generosity.
Fellowship Pacific Region
Surrey, British Columbia
Parkland Fellowship Baptist Church is itself a granddaughter church plant so it is committed to paying forward that privilege. The City of Surrey, once a bedroom community serving Vancouver, is projected to surpass Vancouver as British Columbias most populous city by 2020-30. A whopping 19.2% of the population is Sikh along with a large Muslim community. Surrey also has one of British Colombias youngest populations with nearly one-third of its residents under the age of 18. Almost 50% of Surreys inhabitants are non-white, making Surrey one of the most culturally diverse cities in the country. With this in mind, Parkland Baptist Church has targeted Surrey as the site for a second-generation, multi-cultural church plant focusing on young adults, the least religiously oriented of all ages groups. Church planter, Dustin Laird is heading up this new church plant.
Vancouver, British Columbia
Greater Vancouver is the third largest metropolitan area in Canada with a population of 2.3 million people and is the most densely populated of all Canadian cities. By 2008, 51% of those inhabitants belonged to a visible minority. Vancouver has one of the highest concentrations of ethnic Chinese in North America with 30% of the population being of Chinese heritage. The largest religious group among Vancouverites is made up of those who claim to have no religion at all. This makes church planting in the core of the city a number one priority. South Delta Baptist Church (Pastor Paul Johnson) is looking at targeting the southern part of the city of Vancouver for a new church plant .
FEB Central Region
Forward Church in Cambridge is living up to its namelooking forward to planting not one, but two, satellite churches. Partnering with FEB Central Region, Forward has begun to lay the groundwork for new churches in Guelph and Kitchener, Ontario. Steve Adams, Forwards Senior Pastor, is thrilled with the response from his congregation to the challenge, some of whom have offered to sell their homes and relocate to the targeted communities.
Willow is located in the north part of Guelph. Low income, high density and high need describes this target area and its dynamics fit well with the experience and training of church planters, James and Karen Bast. James has extensive experience leading Celebrate Recovery, a freedom-from-addiction program and Karen has worked for some time with at-risk teens. The Basts relocated into the community and the church plant was launched in February 2012.
Doon Creek in Kitchener is a new development springing up to serve the influx of middle class, young families moving into the area. Derik and Amanda Fuller moved from Oakville, Ontario to Kitchener to begin this new work. The church began in early 2012.
These satellite churches will not be just clones of Forward in Cambridge. Each has a unique target audience, will have a unique name, and will have their own full-time staff to meet the needs of the congregations.
Paris, Ontario, is a thriving community of 13,000 people on the banks of the Grand River. It was named for the large deposits of gypsum located nearby that are used for making plaster of Paris. It is also known as the cobblestone capital of Canada because of the number of old cobblestone houses in the town. This well explains why the new plant has already been named Cobblestone Church (www.cobblestonechurch.ca).
Young families are moving into new housing developments, specifically in the south end of town. Paris has become a growing bedroom community, located between the cities of Brantford, Woodstock, Cambridge and Hamilton. The mission is to reach out to those who know nothing about Jesus and who have no church where they attend.
Church planters, Jay and Sarah Grimes, through the FEB Central Region, and under the umbrella of the South Central Association of Churches. Their first public service was held in Fall 2012.
The Evangelical Baptist Church in Three Rivers is bursting at the seams. Rather than extend its building again, the church has turned its eyes toward the municipality of Bécancour, just across the river from Three Rivers. Some 90 people from the mother church live in this area, whose center is Saint-Grégoire. There are already five house church groups meeting in this almost exclusively French-speaking area of some 43,000 people and no other evangelical churches in the area. The plant, Église Baptiste Évangélique dAujourdhui, launched on September 11, 2011 with 80 members of the mother church. Church planter Israël-Luc Godfrey is a veteran pastor with pastoral experience in Sherbrooke and Matane. He and his wife, Agnès, have been preparing and praying for the opportunity to do church planting for the last thirteen years and are excited about what the Lord is going to do in the region of Bécancour.
A single community doesnt always represent a lot of people, but with modern transportation and communication, smaller communities within a region become significant targets for the church planting enterprise. One such target is Montmagny on the south shore just east of Quebec City. Montmagny, interestingly known as the Snow Goose Capital of Canada, is the hub of a region with a population of over 23,000 people. Robert and Chantal Bonenfant live in Montmagny, Robert is an elder at the Église Baptiste Évangélique des Etchemins in Charny QC, which is the mother church of this proposed new plant. He has also taken training in church planting and is being mentored by an experienced church planter.
Saint-Leonard, Montreal, Quebec
The goal of the French Mission Department is to plant one French-speaking church for every 35,000 people. On the Island of Montreal it will be necessary to plant 50 new congregations if that goal is to be reached. Église Baptiste Évangélique de Rosemont on the Island of Montreal (Pastor Rene Frey) is a reproducing church. But this time there is a unique twist to the church plant targeted for the Montreal suburb of Saint Leonard. Rene Frey, the pastor of Rosemont, is leaving the mother church to plant the daughter work and to train the man who will eventually pastor the new church. Saint Leonard boasts a unique cultural blend. Almost a third of the over 70,000 people in the region speak languages other than English or French. Forty-three percent of the population are descendants of Italian immigrants which has given Saint-Leonard the nickname of Città Italiana. Many services in the community are available in Italian as well as in English and French.
Colombia, South America
The ministry of Fellowship International in Colombia bridges many years. The goal of our missionaries has been to create a reproducing church. El Redil del Oriente is an example of how that goal is being reached. This church of 300 has already launched one church plant and is now looking to plant a second work in the neighbouring towns of La Ceja and El Retiro. Both of these towns already have groups meeting in home and within the coming year a church planter will be commissioned to form these into a formal church plant.
Funds from Project 2012 will be used to help support the church planter, assist with the either a down payment on a facility for the new plant or to cover some of the cost towards renting a meeting place.
Church planting has many challenges. The road to a successful launch is often filled with obstacles and potholes, but with the encouragement and support of our churches across Canada, the journey will be completed and see, at its end, a harvest of souls for the glory of God.