Two local churches joining forces

The New Beginnings Church (formerly Calvary Tabernacle) and Joy of Life Fellowship will be uniting, with their first service together as “New Beginnings Fellowship Church” to be celebrated here this coming Sunday.
“It all came about fairly quickly. The Joy of Life Fellowship came to us about a month ago,” Pastor Steven Laing of the New Beginnings Church noted Friday afternoon.
“We thought about it and decided to do it,” he added. “We feel we’re combining our strengths.
“The two churches were doing a lot of things together anyway,” said Pastor Laing. “We’d get a speaker on a Friday, then they’d get that speaker on the Saturday.
“This just made sense.”
“I’m very excited about it. I think it’s really good,” echoed Pastor Sandy McEvoy of the Joy of Life Fellowship Church. “It’s not the norm for a town that has seen much division [in its churches].”
“It’s about time for the differences to end,” agreed Pastor Laing.
He noted the respective congregations took votes to approve the merger, with the overwhelming majority (95 percent) in favour of it.
“Everybody’s really excited about it,” he remarked.
The ministerial duties at the New Beginnings Fellowship Church will be split between Pastor Laing, his wife, Carol-Leah, and Pastor McEvoy.
Pastor McEvoy noted all the programming and services formerly offered at either church will continue. This includes David’s Deli, the soup kitchen that was started a few years ago at Joy of Life Fellowship.
The merged congregation likely will relocate to the new church being built on Mill Road by the end of May, said Pastor Laing, adding the church will be providing a shuttle service for people to get out to David’s Deli after the relocation.
Pastor McEvoy noted the Joy of Life Fellowship building, located at 714 Armit Ave., will be up for sale in the near future.
The new church will hold a unity service and celebration this Sunday at 10:30 a.m. at 324 Victoria Ave. (the old St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church).
This will consist of a service, followed by a potluck luncheon. Everyone is welcome to attend.
But before then, the new church will be hosting the live dramatic performance, “Heaven’s Gates, Hell’s Flames,” on Monday and Tuesday at 7 p.m. at 324 Victoria Ave.
Admission is free.
For more information about “Heaven’s Gates, Hell’s Flames,” or the New Beginnings Fellowship Church, call 274-3638.