- 1955-2019 (Creation)
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2.3 metres of textual records
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The Sterling Mennonite Fellowship in Winnipeg, Manitoba began services in 1951, and formally organized in 1958. The first building was occupied in 1956, with subsequent building programs in 1969 and 1981. Frank J. Dyck is considered the founding leader of the group. The congregation originated through urbanization from rural Manitoba.
The group was known as St. Vital Mennonite Mission until its formal organization in 1958. It was a city mission begun as a joint effort of the Sommerfelder, Rudnerweider, and Bergthaler churches and with outreach of students from Canadian Mennonite Bible College. Two fellowship groups which met in the homes of Corny Derksen and Jake Derksen decided to rent the Greendale hall in St. Vital for the purpose of establishing a mission church. Ministers D. D. Schulz and D. D. Klassen helped advise and organize the group in 1952.
The congregation met in the church building at 18 Sterling Avenue until the end of March 1970, when a new building was completed at St. Mary's Road and Marvin Place. Their name was then changed to "Sterling Mennonite Fellowship", which it retained when it moved to yet another new building in 1980 at 1008 Dakota Street at Nova Vista Drive.
The language of worship is English and German; the transition from German occurred in the 1950s.
The leaders of the congregation were: Henry T. Klassen (1958-1963), Rev. Jacob W. Schmidt (1963-1968), Rev. David Letkemann (1968-1969), Rev. John F. Wiebe (1969-1973), Helmut Rauser (1975-1976), Gary Loewen (1977-1978), Don MacBurney (1979-1980), Gary Martens (1979-1984), Erwin Wiebe (1984-1986), and Norm Voth (1988-2000), John B. Wiebe (2001-2007), Ed Cornelson (2007-2009), Terry Goertzen (2009-2014), and Moses Falco (2015-).
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This fonds consists of church bulletins, pastors' correspondence, treasurer's correspondence, Sunday School records, membership records, constitutions, church board and membership meeting minutes and reports, administrative files (such as activities of the Service committee and the Christian Endeavour and youth committee work during the late 1960s, pastoral search committee files, church retreat files, a Vacation Bible School file, and topical files such as war tax, prison, congregation statistics and gift discernment.), financial records (such as building committee records such as the specifications for the construction of the Church at Marvin Place and documents pertaining to its sale and the 1981 building plans), ladies group records and a small photograph collection (depicting various functions of the church such as Sunday School, girl's club, adult Bible Study group, evening worship service and the exterior of the church building.) These files all related to the activities of the congregation, first as a mission outreach project and, secondly, as an established church.
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Related units of description
Accession No. 94-202, 2018-039
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Arranged and described by Alf Redekopp 2002 and 2016, updated by Andrew Klassen Brown in June 2020, updated by Selenna Wolfe March 2021.