THUNDER BAY – For two years the sanctuary of the former First United Church has been silent: no strains of hymns, no warm hellos, no fellowship, no ministry; this church was meant to be a centre for worship and ministry. This fall a small visionary group of Christians and some supportive community members have gathered together to prepare to re-open the historic building under a new banner, with a new vision and focus.
Voice of Thunder Victory Church is moving towards its launch on January 13, 2013. They are led by an experienced church planter and ordained pastor, Rev. Ann Camber. Ann has been active in pastoral ministry for 12 years and is also a licensed clinical counsellor. She moved to Thunder Bay from Calgary in 2010 to be closer to her family and with a vision of planting a Victory Church when the time was right. Ann would characterize Victory Churches as Christian contemporary in worship style, charismatic and evangelical in theology. The board of directors and others sharing the vision have been meeting on Sunday afternoons at 2pm in preparation and now are moving to open the doors to the local community with two family events.
The first event is a Coffee House featuring local Thunder Bay talent. This free event will take place on Saturday November 17 from 6pm-10pm. People are welcome to drop in for part or all the evening and enjoy refreshments and great entertainment including bluegrass, country, pop, Gospel, and contemporary Christian inspirational acts. Performers include: JC Wilkinson and Trevor Lowell Jamie Labrador, Cassidy Houston, Scott Skirving, Stained Glass Country, Kindred Spirits and friends, The Model A’s, and Abe & Max Kakepetum. A free will offering will be received. Charitable receipts will be issued.
The second event is a community Christmas celebration and potluck. This event will take place on December 9 from 4pm to 7pm. The church members will supply the coffee and turkey, members of the community are invited to bring a salad, dessert or casserole to share with their neighbours. Entertainment, singing Christmas carols and local artisans on site with Christmas fare for sale will make the event festive and fun. This will also be a free event and people are encouraged to bring items to donate to the local food bank or toys to donate to local Christmas hamper programs.
Voice of Thunder Victory Church is affiliated with Victory Churches International. This is a church planting organization which began with one church 33 years ago in Lethbridge, Alberta and now has planted many churches in 42 countries around the world. For more information on Victory Churches International visit www.victoryint.org
Submitted by Rev. Ann Camber