Rev. & Mrs. Abe Schellenberg

Rev. & Mrs. Abe. Schellenberg, recent graduates from St. Paul's Bible School, began their ministry in the church on October 8, 1939. The church board had recognized that the elder members of the congregation found it difficult to climb the stairs to the Victoria School Auditorium. They moved the church meetings to a vacant store in the Summerfeldt Block on Broadway Avenue.

The new pastor had a specific emphasis on reaching young people. He began Friday night programs and Saturday night Youth Prayer meetings. Groups of around 40 young people gathered for fellowship. Through the ministry of the Schellenbergs, Violet and Esther Reimer, daughters of a faithful church member, John Reimer, accepted Christ as Saviour. They went on to Bible School. Violet became a pastor's wife, and Esther became an Alliance missionary in Ecuador.

In the pastor's report in 1939, Mr. Schellenberg writes that three souls have been saved since his ministry started. He had sensed the power of the people's prayers and knew God was at work. In a written report to the congregation, he requests, "for this coming year, we would like to ask you to stand with us in prayer that there be a great ingathering of souls. . . let us now therefore believe God, and go all the way with Him, not withholding anything from Him. As we yield to Him, and obey Him, then we know that He will pour the showers of blessing upon us."

Three deaconesses are believed to have worked with Rev. Schellenberg. One was Helen Peters, who later became a missionary to Nigeria. Nora Bassingswaite, who had been a missionary in Africa, assisted as deaconess from 1939 to early in 1941 when she went to Regina to become the lady matron at Western Canadian Bible Institute (now Canadian Bible College). Edith Gant also served as deaconess. God called her later to missionary work with her husband, Dr. Rees. These ladies helped with the children's work and assisted with Sunday School and Young People's Society activities.

During the last week of May 1940, two highlights of the church calender merged for a very productive, but busy week. The District Conference for the full-time workers of the Alliance held their meetings during the day, and the Annual Missionary Conference was held in the evening. Mr. & Mrs. Clemmer challenged their evening listeners to see the need for workers in other countries, while Mr. & Mrs. Joe Carlson presented special music. Young people from across the three prairie provinces gathered the Saturday of that week for a day of fellowship and fun.

In the fall of 1940, the church had outstanding meetings with Chief Whitefeather, whose proper name was Teyet Ramar. Interested masses crowded the auditorium in Victoria School out each night. Mr. Schellenberg reported some very good lasting results.

In reporting the results of the campaign, the Pastor also bears his heart. "Pray that the Lord will prepare my own heart, and the hearts of us all, that in this next month we shall experience a great revival. I need it, and I am determined to seek His face until He answers with a mighty outpouring of the Holy Ghost upon myself and the rest of the work."

A consistent ministry carried the Schellenbergs through the winter months. They introduced Junior Young People's meetings to be held each Saturday afternoon beginning in February.

They changed the church constitution at the congregational meeting held that same month. A week later, those available enjoyed a Day of Prayer. The pastor reminded the people in a written report shortly afterwards, "The Spirit of God is working, but I believe we have a great responsibility at this time, for the time is ripe for revival; but it is necessary that we walk very close to Him. Let us therefore lay aside every weight that doth so easily beset, and seek only His glory."

The Schellenbergs used the last week of July to minister to the needs of children, holding the first Daily Vacation Bible School in the rented facilities of the Summerfeldt Block.

Schellenbergs left Saskatoon that fall. On November 12, 1941, they began an Alliance church in Brandon, Manitoba.

Rev & Mrs Schellenberg

Schellenberg Family

Vacation Bible School Outreach to children in the neighborhood

"On the 20th (Feb.) we had our Congregational Meeting, at which we adopted the new church constitution.

February 27 was set aside for prayer. We experienced a real time of blessings as we met before the Lord.

The Spirit of God is working, but I believe we have a great responsibility at this time, for the time is ripe for revival; but it will be necessary that we walk very close to Him."

-Pastor's Annual Report, 1941

Historical Flashbacks were researched and written by Lorraine Willems. Contributors are noted on the related pages. Copyright 2003 and 2013 by copyright holders.