Christian Family Center – Winnipeg, MB
Christian Family Center fonds
Dates of Creation
7.5cm of textual records
The Christian Family Center (CFC), Winnipeg, Manitoba, was a congregation formed in the year 2000. The congregation originally formed out of the Spanish MB church, when then pastor of said congregation, Elton DaSilva, began to lead services in English with roughly a dozen others in a separate room at 81 Henderson Highway. Elton’s father, Elizeu DaSilva, joined to provide additional leadership to the infant and emerging congregation.
The congregation grew quickly and became registered as a charitable organization in 2002. Later, in 2004, CFC joined the Manitoba MB conference. Buses were purchased to pick up children in the Elmwood area for children’s programs on Sunday mornings, youth programs were run on the weekend, and approximately 140 people were attending Sunday morning services, including the approximate 50 children that were present for Sunday school programming.
During the church’s early years, leadership responsibilities were overseen by Elton, Elizeu, and Ana DaSilva (pastor Elton’s wife). However, the leadership team began to expand quickly between 2004 and 2005 upon the arrival of Cynthia Frazer, Fred and Jolene Stoesz, and Adolf and Lina Neufeld, and the additional arrival of George and Aileen Klassen in 2006. It was at this time that SOUL (School of Urban Leadership), began conducting classes out of Christian Family Center with George Klassen serving as director (click here to see the CMBS collection for SOUL).
In 2010, the congregation celebrated its 10-year anniversary and held an appreciation service for the DaSilvas for the work they had contributed to Christian Family Center. Later that year, Pastor Elton accepted the position of executive director of the Manitoba MB Conference. This led to the need to search for a new lead pastor. During this time, the church also experienced some decline in attendance. In 2011, Edgar French took over the role of pastor. While there were new people coming to Christian Family Center, the overall numbers and giving of the congregation continued to decline.
In 2013, the leadership team began to discuss the viability of the congregation. This led the leadership team to open discussions about a potential church merger with Elmwood MB; however, the decision was made not to pursue said merger in 2015. After more key leaders left the congregation, Sunday school classes were forced to come to an end. A preliminary conversation about becoming a satellite church of The Meeting Place occurred later that fall, but this proposal was also rejected. The church decided to close and held a legacy celebration service as its final official gathering on January 17, 2016.
The leaders of the congregation were Elton DaSilva (2000–2010) and Edgar French (2011–2016).
The language of worship was English.
Note: The source of this administrative history is “The Story of CFC” found in vol. 1519, fld. 46.
Scope and Content
This fonds consists of leadership board meeting minutes and correspondence, weekly bulletins, legal documents regarding rental agreements, articles of incorporation, memoranda of understanding regarding building ownership, vision statements, covenant community values, membership list, sermon/teaching materials, pastoral search documents, performance evaluations, and ministry documents. These documents detail the beginning of the congregation and show its focus on outreach in urban Winnipeg across a variety of age and socio-economic demographics.
Records were transferred to the Centre for MB Studies archives in Winnipeg, Manitoba, in July 2021 after being preliminarily organized in the basement of the former Manitoba MB conference office on 83 Henderson Highway.
- Location: Volume 1519.
- Described by Liam Bull, August 11, 2021.
- Accession no.: 2021-08.
- Finding aid consists of a description and a file list.
- Some restrictions apply.
- Language: English and some Portuguese.
- See also the CMBC collection for SOUL https://cmbs.mennonitebrethren.ca/inst_records/soul-school-of-urban-leadership-winnipeg-mb/
- Legal documents. Name reservation, articles of incorporation, rental agreements, 81 and 83 Henderson MOU’s. -- 2002–2014.
- Leadership development. -- 2012.
- Miscellaneous documents. Correspondence, ministry materials, agreement drafts, position descriptions, outreach materials, job applications. -- [200-]–[201-]. Restricted.
- Meeting minutes and correspondence. -- 2001–2008.
- Meeting minutes and correspondence, including a two-page summary of the church’s history -- 2009–2016.
- Pastoral search documents. Search committee minutes, interview questions, church profile, job description, cover letter, congregation surveys. -- 2011.
- Performance evaluations. -- 2014. Restricted.
- Men’s retreat documents. -- 2008.
- Weekly bulletins and news updates. -- 2008–2009.
- News updates and ministry resources. -- [200-]–[201-].