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Willingdon Church – Burnaby, BC

Proper Title

Willingdon Church fonds

Dates of Creation

1960–2003, 2013

Physical Description

37.5 cm of textual records, 2 microfilm reels, and 2 photos

Administrative History

Willingdon Church in Burnaby, British Columbia, originally known as the Willingdon Mennonite Brethren Church and began in 1960. The Vancouver Mennonite Brethren Church was overcrowded and supported the building of the new 450-seat church on Willingdon Avenue, which was finished in 1961. 116 members of the Vancouver church became the core group for the Willingdon church. George Letkeman served as the first church leader until the summer of 1962, followed by George Braun who served from 1962–1966 and was the first salaried pastor.

In 1972 a new Christian Education wing was added to the church Membership had grown to 520 members with up to 700 people in attendance at two morning services. The church continued to grow rapidly and the congregation continued to add programs that were age and need specific.

In February 1982, the church dedicated a new sanctuary with seating to accommodate 1000 people. While the church worships in English, simultaneous translation is offered in several languages. As of 2002 these included Cantonese, Mandarin, French, Korean, Japanese and Russian. As of 2007 the church had an advanced technical department that provided web based services such as videos of the services.

Membership in the church in 1965 stood at 187 members; in 1975, 329; in 1985, 825; in 1993, 1153; in 2000, 1822; in 2005, 2040.

Leaders of the congregation include the following: George Letkeman (1960–1962, 1966–1968, 1970–1971), George Braun (1962–1966), Isaac Redekopp (1968–1970), Herb Neufeld (1971–1985), Carlin Weinhauer (1986–2002), John Neufeld (2002–2014) Ray Harms-Wiebe (2015– ).

Scope and Content

This fonds consists of a historical sketch, photo directory, bulletins and newsletters, newspaper article, ministry brochures, policies, membership register, annual reports, congregational, church council and board of elders meeting minutes.

Custodial History

It is unclear when the textual materials came to the archives. The microfilmed material came to the archives after a Conference wide microfilming program in ca. 1978 led by J.B. Toews.

Notes

  • Location: Volumes 357–359, microfilms 68–69.
  • Description by Conrad Stoesz, February 5, 2007.
  • Finding aid consists of a file list.
  • No restrictions on access.

File List

Volume 357
1. History. -- 1960–1985.
2. Photo Directory. -- ca. 197-?
3. Bulletins. -- 1967.
4. Bulletins. -- 1968.
5. Bulletins. -- 1971.
6. Bulletins. -- 1981.
7. Newsletter. -- 1984.
8. Bulletins & Newsletter. -- 1985.
9. Bulletins & Newsletters. -- 1986.
10. Bulletins & Newsletters. -- 1987.
11. Bulletins & Newsletters, Constitution of the Young Adults. -- 1988.
12. Bulletins & Newsletters. -- 1989.
13. Bulletins. -- 1990.
14. Bulletins & Newsletter. -- 1991.
15. Bulletins & Newsletters. -- 1992.
16. Bulletins & Newsletters. -- 1993.
17. Bulletins & Newsletters. -- 1994.

Volume 358
1. Newspaper Article – Burnaby Now. -- May 8, 1991.
2. Ministry Brochures. -- n.d.
3. Bulletins & Newsletters. -- 1995.
4. Bulletins & Newsletters. -- 1996.
5. Bulletins & Newsletters. -- 1997.
6. Bulletins & Newsletters. -- 1998.
7. Bulletins & Newsletters. -- 1999.

Volume 359
1. Bulletins & Newsletters. -- 2000.
2. Bulletins & Newsletters. -- 2001.
3. Bulletins & Newsletters. -- 2002.
4. Bulletins. -- 2003.
5. 50th wedding anniversary photo. -- 2013.

Microfilm file list

Reel 68

  • Policies. 1978. pp 1858–1905.
  • Membership Register. 1978. pp 1906–1964.
  • Annual Reports – Church Meetings. 1963, 1965–1977 (missing 1964). pp 1428–1857.
  • Congregational Meeting Minutes. Mar 1963–May 1977. pp 680–981.
  • Church Council Meeting Minutes. Jan 1963–Nov 1971. pp 982–1172.
  • Church Council Meeting Minutes. Jan 1972–May 1977. pp 1173–1307.
  • Board of Elders Meeting Minutes. 1977–Nov 1978. pp 1308–1427.
  • Church Bulletins. 1967, 1971.

Reel 69

  • Family Register (Card system). 1978. pp 1–381.
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