We are so grateful you’ve come to celebrate what God has done in and through this unique community called Winnipeg Centre Vineyard. It’s been 20 years since the prayer meetings in David and Anita’s living room morphed into public gatherings. If you were around in those early days in 1995, and haven’t been here in awhile, welcome back! If you’ve more recently found yourself part of the WCV family, we hope this weekend will help you become more rooted in our story.
A wise man once told us to “Walk backwards into the future”. In other words, where we come from will influence where we’re going. As we meet in this place – this traditional Anishinabe and Treaty One territory – we want to recall the stories that have formed us and the powerful ways God has shaped us. However, we don’t want to get caught in mere nostalgia, simply telling stories of the “good ole days”. Our hope is that something will stir in our spirits as we trace the arc of WCV’s narrative and, in doing so, that we will be inspired into our future together.
As Paul said, “[…] he who began a good work in you will complete it.” It’s a plural “you”. God has been working since those early prayer meetings in the Ruis’ living room, and he’s still moving and active among us; forming us into his likeness. Our prayer is that we will come out of this Vineyard Fest! celebration with a deep sense of gratitude for the past and renewed vision to propel us into the future.
~Andy for the pastoral team
Worship led by David Ruis
“Stories that Shaped Us – Vision to Call Us” – staff telling pivotal WCV stories.
Saturday, 11am – 5:30pm
Neighbourhood Party (see below for details)
Worship led by WCV band
“Stories that Shaped Us – Vision to Call Us” – David and Anita Ruis
Worship led by David Ruis
“Stories that Shaped Us – Vision to Call Us” – Noel Isaacs & Others
Since we never do anything without the thought of inviting others along for the journey, we have invited our neighbourhood to come and celebrate with us. We want our celebration to be an actual blessing to our neighbours; one that will launch us into a new season of everything God has for us and our neighbourhood.
The Neighbourhood party will be in the Greenspace, parking lot and Vineyard Memorial Path and will include the following:
- Pancake Brunch: 11am – 12 noon
- Kids’ Activities (pony rides, bouncy castle, face painting): 11am – 2pm
- Live Music in the Greenspace: 11am – 5pm
- Prayer Tents: 12 – 5pm
- BBQ Feast: 4:30pm – 5:30pm
Share Your Stories
Unfortunately, there won’t be time this weekend to hear about all the ways God has worked in and through WCV over the years. Nonetheless, we’d love to collect your thoughts, pivotal stories or prayers for WCV as we look to the future. If you have something to share, please record a short video and post it to our Facebook page. Some of these will be collected and shown in our Main Sessions. Please keep them short (2 mins max, 30 seconds is great). You can post them on our WCV Facebook Page.
There is no childcare or kids’ programming scheduled during the Friday and Saturday Main Sessions. The Sunday morning session will have our normal “Kids’ Church” activities. All children must be signed into our Kid Check system, which is set up at the South Door Foyer (by the elevator). The Neighbourhood Party is totally for kids!
The Nursing Moms’ room is available at any time during the main sessions for those who want some more privacy. It’s located in the North-West corner of the sanctuary (opposite end from the Kitchen).
We know that any timeline will do a disservice to the numerous big and small things God has done in our life together. Many people have contributed to WCV over the years – too many to list here. This is simply a brief overview of significant events, incidents and leadership over the past 20 years.
1994 – David and Anita Ruis – The heart in the heartland! They meet John and Violet Rademaker at a worship event in BC.
1995 Summer – A small group begins to meet in the Ruis’ living room in Winnipeg to pray and articulate vision.
1995 Fall – 960 Main St. is acquired for office space and a Ministry Centre. Weekday prayer meetings and Drop-in begin.
1995 Oct – First public Sunday morning gathering at Living Bible Explorers.
1995 Nov – Sunday gatherings begin at Jubilee Place @ MBCI. During this period the Pastoral team includes various combinations of: David & Anita Ruis, Jan & Coral Steffan, John & Violet Rademaker, and Brian & Shannon Creary. Colin & Cynthia Lees later join the pastoral team. Many others were also involved in various capacities, coming and going throughout the years.
1996 Sept – The Fragrance of Justice conference with John Wimber & Jackie Pullinger.
1996 – Sunday gatherings begin in Bethlehem Aboriginal Fellowship’s building on Burrows and Charles.
1998 – Noel & Dona Isaacs visit for 3 months and are sent out to plant the Kathmandu Vineyard in Nepal. “Fragrant Oil” worship album released.
1999 – Nathan & Kendra Rieger join the pastoral team. Andy & Beckie Wood start the first Vineyard School of Justice. “Shake off the Dust” worship album released.
2001 – “The Mystery” & North End Artist’s Collective “No Fixed Address” albums released.
2002 Spring – David and Anita move to Los Angeles.
2002 Summer – WCV moves out of Burrows and meets in David Livingstone School, 960 Main St. and Winnipeg Christian Centre on Provencher while we search for a permanent home.
2002 – 782 Main St. is given to WCV after giving our building fund to the Kathmandu Vineyard for them to purchase their home. Renovations to main floor and ½ of 2nd floor.
2003 Spring – Move to 782 Main St. & sell 960 Main St.
2005 – Mike & Jodi join pastoral team as Children’s Pastors. A group leaves to start Sanctuary House of Prayer.
2006 – Andy & Beckie Wood join Pastoral team.
2007 Mar – Flatlanders Inn opens (1st phase on the 2nd floor)
2009 Mar – Flatlanders Inn expands (2nd phase on the 3rd floor)
2010 Dec – Flatlanders Inn expands (3rd phase on the 3rd floor)
2011 Spring – Flatlanders Studio opens
2013 – Suhail Stephen reboots the Vineyard School of Justice
2015 April – Earthquake hits Himalayan Region – WCV coordinates world-wide response.
2015 – Suhail Stephen joins staff team as Drop-in Pastor.
2015 – “Within and Without” worship album released.
Our youth have had a number of directors and leaders serve them over the years including: Nolan Clark, Jason & Loraleigh Epp, Sheri McConnell (who also spearheaded Student Revival & Downpour Youth events), Adria Penner, Tim & Tara Klassen, Robb Massey, Jeff Leighton, Sebas & Beckah Hodder, Cornelius & Tania Martens, Ian Williams and currently James & Lynelle Ryan.
Our children have had a number of Children’s coordinators / directors serving them including: Lilian Poetker, Cathy Barclay, Nancy Saura, Joyska Schmidt, Mike Labun and currently Jodi Labun.
Other various ministries and communities have spun out of WCV or have been part of the swirl in one way or another. These include Andrew & Tami Smith, Rik & Zara Leaf and Kim Johnson who were part of the Artists Collective. Jan and Coral Steffan planted the Brandon Vineyard which is now pastored by Ed & Lynn Creary who were part of WCV in the early days. Joe Eapen, Derek & Joy Eidse, Jason & Theresa Eheler, Greg & Theresa Trask, Doug & Rachelle Houlbrook & David & Anita Ruis and others spearheaded the Freedom House. Gregg & Irene Musselmen, Lindsay & Lois Ward and Sean & Natasha Hogan with the Winnipeg South Vineyard (which is now the Village Vineyard). Robb and Christa Massey and a team of people from WCV planted the Vineyard in Elmwood.
Nepal and the Himalayan Region has seen many trips (too many to mention). Many families from WCV have spent time and sown into this vital relationship. The “multi-month club” include Kevin & Heather Attkey, Ken & Bonnie Lewis & family, Rod & Elisa Jersak & family, Mike & Jodi Labun & family and others.
Mercy In Action in the Philippines has also been a significant connection for WCV. Andy & Beckie Wood, Steve & Susan Wintoniw, Jason & Theresa Eheler, Jennifer Stephen, Karina Lewis, and Jon & Tracy Mullet and others have all spent significant time cultivating this relationship.
Flatlanders Inn began in prayer in 2005 and came to fruition in 2007. Since then the Leadership team has included Andy & Beckie Wood, Jeff & Amanda Leighton, Adam Ward, Sarah Coloumbe, Luke Mayhew, Sarah Hildebrand, Brendan & Kelly Dvorak and Laura Dahl with many others contributing, serving and learning in this context as Transitional Members or Interns.
Of course there are many other people who could be listed who have served and led in various capacities over the years (like Lillian Poetker our amazing bookkeeper and Jason & Yvonne Parks in worship). We are grateful for the rich heritage of leadership and service in WCV. Thanks to all and thanks to God! Here’s to the Kingdom Come!