About a year ago, Kelly realized that a large number of their congregants were commuting from Taber to join the Lethbridge service. He found there were 250 people with Taber addresses, and another 50 from Barnwell and Grassy Lake area. This caught his attention and for Christmas Eve the church held a pop-up service in the Taber rec centre. They were pleasantly surprised by the large number of attendees.
He still had hesitations in planting a church in Taber, however. “The Life Church was already there and they’re similar to us. I didn’t really want to go in there while they were there… I didn’t want to damage another church.” Then, at the end of February the pastor at the Life Church called him and announced the church was shutting down March 31st. He wanted to know if MyVictory would be interested in taking over the building. “It was very much a God thing,” Kelly agreed, and the plans were set in motion. The two church boards met, and the building was purchased. “We walked through the building--and it was gorgeous,” Kelly says. “It kind of caught us off guard… the renovations they put in there are incredible. I was quite surprised.”
He believes it’s easier to reach the unchurched when friends can invite them to the church in their community, rather than driving to another city. “Plus, it gives us room here in Lethbridge to grow.” He is confident that there is a spiritual hunger in Southern Alberta, and the church is in good shape.
When asked what a newcomer can expect from a first time visit to MyVictory, Kelly says “it’s not what you expect… overwhelmingly, the response from newcomers is ‘I felt so welcome.’” Their greeters roam the church to welcome people, and the congregation always has their eyes open to bring people into the community. “We seek to honour everyone where they’re at and present the gospel in as creative and exciting and easy-to-understand way.”
Their plan is to open the Taber campus with the same quality of services as any MyVictory location, including youth, nursery and small groups. The MyVictory Taber church campus will be headed by Rene and Jill, campus pastors, and is set to open September 15th, 2019.