Category Archives: Pansy Chapel

Pansy Chapel: Picnic, Baptisms, Dedication, Adoption, and Pavement

by Betty Barkman

PANSY, Man.—Many things happen in a church. Sometimes God surprises us by adding to the mix even more then for which we might have bargained. On Sunday morning, July 1, a beloved daughter of the church suffered a heart attack in the middle of our prayer time.

Amid qualified attendees quickly applying resuscitation, and countless tears and prayers all over the sanctuary, suddenly she started breathing again. By the time the professional emergency people arrived she was doing better, and, at the time of this writing, much better. Thank you, church. We don’t know why this happened, but we choose to thank God regardless. He is amazing.

The Sunday before, on June 24, we were blessed by the baptism of five candidates. There is a wonderful spirit of joy watching the couple of hundred guests at the river site cheering on their loved ones who were taking this vital stand for their faith in Jesus Christ. May God give each of you his guidance, courage and joy in the days ahead!

On June 17 we held our annual picnic. When you get to have perfect weather, no bugs, a best-all-around park, food and well-planned activities together in a happy crowd—can you think of a better way to spend a Sunday afternoon?

To commemorate the re-paving of Pansy Road—something that was worked hard for and is much appreciated—we held a prayer walk early Sunday morning on the July 10. Each mile was walked along, in groups, as we prayed for the people travelling this road, for its longevity and special thanks to God Who alone made this possible.

May highlights included a parent-child dedication service on June 13. Involved were Dorian and Chantelle Friesen with Hailey, Daniel and Kayla Goertzen with David, Jason and Brianne Preteau with Hazel, and Arvid and Manuella Zacharias with Gabriel. We pray for you all. May you have joy and wisdom for the parenting journey.

On May 11 we hosted “Solitary Refinement,” the Voice of Martyrs Canada presenting incredible true stories from the persecuted church. It was eye opening to say the least.

Before that we had had Compassion Canada, with a special speaker, Kiwi, telling her story. She had been a sponsored child and was now in a position to help us help others. A few weeks earlier we’d heard the story from Rob and Sharon Steeves about their amazing journey toward finding their three Ukrainian orphans who are orphans no more. Surely there are few things more worth talking about then our learning to hear and obey the voice of our Lord, whatever shape that takes.

Pansy: 6 + 16 = 22 Baptized in One Service

by Betty Barkman

PANSY, Man.—A winter baptism on Jan. 14, 2018, planned for six people turned into an impromptu baptism for an additional 16. After the six candidates (Sarah McQuade, Ginette Morgan, Sandy Gobeil, Brad Wiebe, Jordan Reimer, and Aaron Barkman) had been baptized, as per our custom of many years the invitation was given to anyone else who would like to take this important step.

It didn’t take long and people starting coming forward and, upon confession of their faith, an additional 16 received baptism that morning, a mix of regular attenders and some visitors. As the stage became littered with towels, shoes and dripping clothes, and people went home in dry shepherd costumes, it made us wonder what it was like in Acts 2:37-41. When 3,000 were baptized in one day, there must have been a lot of wet clothes and shoes lined up on the beach. Our hearts were full. What a privilege to be a part of the work that God is doing.

Our baptisms typically take place in summer (including a five-week New Life Class leading up to the service) when the creek behind the church property can be used. This winter several people expressed an interest in winter baptism, so with the use of a baptismal tank (thanks to Urban Life) a winter baptism was planned.

There are, of course, many other ways God is working in our midst. We could tell about the pre-Christmas rush of sending shoeboxes in record numbers or of the regular Christmas concert that turned to a highlight this year. Or we could describe the seven-week Hearing God study that amazed us. There is so much to learn about hearing God throughout the Scriptures as well as in life.

One surprise happened with that that none of us could remember seeing before: a midweek traffic jam on Road 21N. Plus the sessions may well have been the catalyst preceding the unusual service on Jan 14. Who knows what God may do?

Or we could recount the Ensenada Missions stories involving YUGO and building homes for the needy in Mexico. It thrills my heart to think that God is able to use us to go build house after house for someone deserving and waiting. And again, that God could use us to help certain other groups who did not yet have the blessing from their own church to go, but together we could make it happen. Wow! I remember a time way back when our churches were not blessing missions yet and someone helped us move forward, and look to where we have grown. So now it is our turn to help move others forward.

The thought of missions makes me wish I was young again and I could go. And do more. Perhaps I would choose to go to Cuba with ASSIST. Their needs are so great. Wouldn’t it be neat to get involved hands on?

Pansy: Church Picnic, Baptisms, Website

By Betty Barkman

PANSY, Man.—Summer has its specialties. In our church that includes things like the annual church picnic at the local park. This year’s event on June 11 seemed quite perfect. The weather, the attendance, the food, as well as the activities were all amazing, which we appreciated. (We were rained out last year.)

One thing we tried differently this time: we had the service in the church first before moving over to the park. Haven’t heard the deciding vote on that yet; maybe we started a new trend.

Another big summer highlight is the baptism service and, since our “tank” is down in the river, our best choice is always a summer baptism. The service we had on June 18 involved five men.

Each of their lives is uniquely different as their stories so clearly portrayed. Yet each came to the same conclusion: It was time to commit fully to Christ and to make a public confession of that through baptism. May God richly bless and guide you all five.

Our summer building project is well on the way. The new education wing is taking shape and the possibility of using it yet this fall is definitely rising.

Another new thing this summer is our first ever website. Yes, it’s up and running. Thanks to Gus. You can now follow us online, re-listen to a message, and check the schedules at I am excited about that.

Pansy: Baptisms and missions

by Betty Barkman

PANSY, Man.—Like usual, fall has been a busy time here. On Sept. 4, Kyla Funk got baptized down by the river. Although once more it was a rainy day and umbrellas did get used, it was indeed a special event. Her testimony and joy is vibrant; we pray for continued grace in her journey.

In hindsight, I realize I failed to report another baptism that happened earlier this spring. Daniel Goertzen, spontaneously asked for baptism during a revival-type service, and the pastors said, Why not?  This time it was inside, though, like we used to do it. We are proud of you, Daniel, and we wish you well.

Thanksgiving Celebration went well with a super chicken dinner followed by a time of praise. One specific thing we were thankful for was the overflowing Sunday School space and we used that night to kick off another building fund, this time for added classrooms.

Fall is also when we do our Samaritan’s Purse Christmas boxes. With enthusiastic leaders like Sheila Barkman and Sheri Goertzen lighting the fire, it would be difficult not to join the team. “It’s not the boxes that count, “they say, “but every box represents one child that gets an opportunity to experience the love of Jesus. “ and having been there—at the distribution, they know. We made it to 473 this year.

Then, of course, we are gearing up for Christmas. After that we are preparing for the big mission push of the year—building, Lord willing, three houses for destitute, but deserving families in Ensenada, Mexico, in February.

It has been neat to see how another church that is just learning missions is coming alongside us and we can work together. Another thing has been seeing Jake and Shelly Rempel’s involvement in Cuban missions, and wondering how we can best include that on our mission roster. So many places to serve. May we be found faithful in whatever corner God puts us in to shine for Him!