“La Salle Community Fellowship participates in just about everything else the town has to offer,” says pastor Kelly Cochrane, who began leading the 20-year-old congregation in 2015, after founding pastor Ray Klassen retired.
Located 10 minutes south of Winnipeg, La Salle is a growing town of 3,000. LSCF volunteers are a familiar sight at home shows, parades, pancake breakfasts and golf tournaments. Each spring, church members clean up the ditches along Highway 330.
In partnership with Glenlea Mennonite, LSCF leads an annual vacation Bible school for some 140 children. Once they age out, students in Grade 6 and up return year after year as volunteer guides. Since 1999, the program has grown from 84 to 140 children. The theme of this year’s VBS, Aug. 8–12, is a “prayer safari.”
LSCF’s 150 attenders have backgrounds in almost every denomination. Sunday services are informal affairs featuring boisterous children, a full band and the freedom to wander to the back for a cup of coffee. Since 1998, Darren Willems, La Salle’s first full-time pastor and current worship pastor, often provides the music together with his wife Val.
LSCF just completed a sermon series on Ephesians: “digging into what it means to live out our faith through fresh new experiences and adventures in Christ,” says Kelly. This led to the discovery that many in the congregation had never been personally discipled. Using Greg Ogden’s Discipleship Essentials, groups of two or three are “helping each other follow Christ through everyday life.”
Led by Steve Bock, the youth group is growing and active in mission. This July 8–18, some 18 youth (nearly half from non-church-attending families) will join MB Mission’s Soar Montreal team, where they will receive leadership and evangelism training in one of North America’s least-reached areas.
After 14 years of meeting in the local school, LSCF moved a 200-seat building from Winkler, Man., to La Salle in 2009, but they are quickly running out of room. Pray that God will provide them with the space and resources to do his work well.
Remember LSCF’s VBS outreach and Soar Montreal trip in prayer. Pray that the Holy Spirit will open the hearts of their community to the good news of Jesus. Ask Jesus to bless Kelly, Steve, Darren and LSCF’s other leaders with Christ-like wisdom as they disciple others.
Address: Box 750, La Salle MB, R0G 1B0
Written by Angeline Schellenberg
MB Herald copy editor since 2010, Angeline Schellenberg loves to share stories of how God is at work in the church. She and her husband take pictures together as Anthony Mark Photography. Angeline’s first book, Tell Them It Was Mozart (Brick Books), poems about raising children on the autism spectrum, will be published in September 2016. A member at Crossroads MB Church, Winnipeg, Angeline lives with her husband, their two teenagers, and a German shepherd-corgi.