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Peahland Campus Report

Derrick Hamre

Derrick Hamre

Lead Pastor

On Tuesday night, Pastor Arte and I met with our Peachland Campus at Bedford's for supper and dialogue. It was a wonderful sharing time with a great group of people. There were 3 important topics to discuss; transition, autumn and 2015. First, I wanted to give opportunity for people to ask questions about the current pastoral transition. With our leaving, how would that effect Peachland? Due to staff shortages what would the fall ministry look like and where should our priorities lie? We also wanted to talk about long term plans and ministry. With Pastor Arte and Julie Overby's arrival and community opportunities, should we adjust ministry goals and direction for 2015 and beyond. As you can imagine, it was an invigorating town hall meeting.  I was so proud of their respect for each other and of their love expressed towards their brothers and sisters at the West Kelowna Campus. I was encouraged by their servant leadership and humility. There were many creative ideas. The energy to work towards a preferred future deeply touched both Pastor Arte and I. Here are some of the highlights:

Peachland Campus has decided to remain joined with the West Kelowna Campus in Sunday morning celebration during the pastoral transition. This allows energy and focus to go towards small groups and weekly congregational gatherings rather than the celebration service. It will also allow them to be engaged in the Lead Pastoral search as much as possible as the next Senior Pastor will be important in vision and influence regarding the Peachland Campus. Recognizing the smaller number of pastors to serve our congregation in the fall, this adjustment illustrated the "preferring our brother" principle lauded in Scripture.

Pastor Arte, our Peachland Deacon (Jeff Walker) and the Outreach Committee will work towards weekly events in the autumn that will allow the campus to connect for fellowship, prayer, outreach and food! These times will be varied and pivotal in keeping the community connected.

In 2015, after the arrival of the next Lead Pastor, Pastor Arte will guide the Peachland Campus into its next chapter. This may include an evening service, rental of a church in Peachland, inviting greater participation from the West Kelowna Campus and plans to purchase land. For example, if the Peachland Campus was to begin a weekly Saturday night service at the United Church, those from the West Kelowna Campus who have to work on Sundays could go there for Saturday worship, Communion and preaching. This is exciting vision moving forward.


Upcoming Events

Jeff Bjorgan

Spiritual Formation Pastor

The long weekend is over, the days are getting shorter, people are returning from holidays, and school supplies are on sale in the stores. I’m sorry. I don’t want to rush your summer. Please remember to still go to the beach as often as possible.

But there’s no denying it: around here we’re already planning for the fall season. There are a few dates that we want you to circle in your calendars in preparation.

August 31. On this Sunday, we are going to say farewell to the Hamre family as well as commission them for their next big adventure down in Langley, BC. The morning service will feature testimonies and videos; Annick Gabruch will be making a special appearance to lead us in worship, and pastor Derrick will be preaching. Later on in the day, at 4 pm, we’ll be having a potluck reception. We’ll provide cake and other goodies, and we’ll be kickin’ it old school by offering KFC, out of real KFC buckets, for a twoonie. Please bring a veggie or fruit tray or a salad to share with others.

September 7. The fall starts early this year, and September 7 finds us back to two services. That means Sunday School will be starting during the 9 am service and Kids church will take place during the 11 am service. Also, we’re calling this particular weekend “Spiritual Emphasis Days”, a great opportunity to start the Fall season off with prayer and corporate renewal. Our guest speaker is Brent Cantelon, and he will be speaking in the morning services as well as on Sunday and Monday night. Plan to attend!

September 14. On this Sunday we welcome our Interim Pastor Paul Cassidy. We will also have ministry tables providing opportunities for volunteering. Later in the day, at 4 pm, we’ll be having our Fall Kick Off party for family and friends. It’s sure to be a great day!


Update from Our Summer Interns

Daniel Patten & Sol Reutlinger

Emmanuel Summer Interns


I was given the responsibility, but really it was an amazing opportunity to take eight teens to 100 Mile House. It actually started July 3rd running our backyard kids clubs where I got to work with each of these teens. In 100 Mile House our ministry was to repeat the backyard kids clubs there with worship, message, crafts and games. In our free time we found other ways to serve the town. At one of the homes that some of us were billeted at there were five girls, with another baby on the way. We never saw the father as he was always working. We played games with all the girls so that their mother could have some time just to relax. Each evening I had the team playing a game for a time of team bonding. One evening we did a devotional based on Proverbs 15:1-3. I asked each of the team members to speak encouragement to each other, including our team's driver and the local pastor we worked with. Victory was found in 100 Mile House. The kids there can hardly wait for us to go back next year and are spreading the word about the backyard kids clubs to all their friends. Praise God, amen!


Kids club 2014 was an amazing opportunity to not only share about God but also to share about God's love to kids at 100 Mile House. While at 100 Mile House we played with the kids, we sang cool songs, shared the "LOVE" message and did crafts. Our job/mission felt easy because the children were so eager and engaged to learn more about God. Their involvement in the program amazed me; their attention and participation was encouraging. Some of the children we had were not Christians, nevertheless, we had a positive response and as a group we were encouraged to do a better job. Even though we only spent a week in 100 Mile House, we built strong friendships not only with the kids but also with their parents; this made our departure hard. We thank God for the opportunity He gave us to plant seeds in the children's hearts and for using us to bless others. Thank you all for your prayers. And thank you parents for letting us borrow your children to impact the next generation and to do work for the Kingdom of God. They were a blessing.


Pastor Derrick's Resignation

Derrick Hamre

Derrick Hamre

Lead Pastor

On Sunday, July 13, I sent the following letter to our Deacon / Pastor Leadership Team. I was sitting in an office with Sara-Lee pondering life. The membership of Christian Life Assembly were meeting. I was wondering and praying when there came a knock on the door. It was our Superintendent with words that would change the trajectory of our lives. We had received a 92% vote, higher than CLA had ever voted before. Prior to going with him to address the assembled crowd, I sent this letter. The relationships here are too valuable and important for me not to honour. Before anyone else knew, via email, our leaders knew. I then went to complete what I had called my rendez-vous with destiny. God had answered our prayers for discernment, he has started to write a new chapter for us all. Let us hold to faith in Him.

Dear Emmanuel Leadership,

It is with mixed emotions that I render my official resignation as Lead Pastor of Emmanuel Church, West Kelowna . After a strong vote of the membership of Christian Life Assembly, I have accepted the call to pastoral duties effective September 1st.

After 17 years of incredible ministry my departure from all that is comfortable and familiar will come with difficulties. These have been the best years of my life. Each of you are not only partners in ministry but friends. There are two emotions I feel right now, contrasting ones. First the pain of good bye. It breaks my heart to leave you. The second is relief, not from the end of a process‎ but from obedience. I have done what God required me to do. I fulfilled my marching orders. My alignment to Him is secure and I have passed His test. The outcome has truly surprised me. However, as I look back, this may be one of the most pivotal tests I've ever had to undertake.

Thank you for your prayers and support. I have never felt abandoned or judged. I have bragged of your spiritual depth and emotional health. I believe your test now begins. May you be strong and courageous. May you be prayerful and faith filled. May you see God's provision and care in increasing ways.

We will meet tomorrow night at 7 pm. Superintendent Ken Russell will be with us.

For Such a Time as This,


Letter to the Congregation

Derrick Hamre

Derrick Hamre

Lead Pastor

Dear Emmanuel Church,

Moments ago, I sent my official resignation to the Emmanuel Leadership Team. After a strong vote of the membership of Christian Life Assembly in Langley, I am stepping down as Lead Pastor of Emmanuel Church. This vote has been the confirmation to me that God is ‎guiding us on a new path.

First, I want to thank you for the prayer and support over the past two weeks. This has been a difficult road for us. As a priest before God, His will and design has always been primary. I must follow His leading and your understanding of this has helped me.

Second, for 17 years of faithful partnership, I am so grateful. It is with mixed emotions that we send this note today. You will remain in my heart and I will cherish the corporate memories forever. These have been the best years of my life! Thank you.

Third, my date of departure is September 1. I will be meeting with the board tomorrow at 7 pm. Ken Russell, BC & Yukon District Superintendent will be there as well. He will help the deacons to understand next steps in the search process. We will communicate as clear and as often as we can as important steps in the process are taken.

The final item is a call to pray. This is Christ's Church, He has a plan. Let's continue to believe that He will guide us and keep us in peace. May you be filled with faith in Christ, hope for the future and an understanding of His will.

In sincere love,
Pastor Derrick