Pastor Ivan Blakney
I grew up on a dairy farm in the province of New Brunswick where I learned a lot about life, nature, and work. There was always a Christian influence in my family, and I sensed God drawing me to him from a young age. As a youth, I struggled with the commitment required to follow God and lacked power, joy, and fulfillment until ready to follow Jesus with all my heart at age 20.
After making a commitment to follow the Lord, God revealed his power and goodness to me in ways I had never experienced before. It was natural then to attend Bible College and enter pastoral ministry. It was at college where Sherrie and I met and we were soon married. Thus began an interesting and rewarding journey which includes two boys, Chuck and Tim, their wives Teresa and Parysh, and one granddaughter Payzlee.
We began ministry in the Maritime District of the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada and pastored four different congregations there. The experience was often challenging, but definitely rewarding as we learned of God and his ways, seeing his hand at work. I could not imagine God would have me doing anything other than pastoring. However, in 2002 we moved to Winnipeg where I initially worked with a couple of organizations whose focus was inner-city youth. This was an unexpected change of direction for me, and stretching in various ways. Once again, however, God revealed his purpose and blessing in this chapter of my life. Those years were very special as we witnessed God working in the lives of these children and youth, and the leaders who ministered to them.
Then God opened doors for me to return to pastoral ministry again, and in 2016 we received the call to pastor New Beginnings Church. This was accompanied by personal, and moving, confirmation of God’s love for this people and his plan to bless this church. It is our joy to serve the Lord at NBC. The Lord Jesus has saved us by his grace and given us new and fullness of life, so it is only appropriate to give this life back in service to him.