Evangelical Fellowship Church (Fort Frances, Ontario, Canada)

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Two brothers, Ike and George Friesen, and their families as well as some young people from the Christian Fellowship Chapel of Stratton, Ontario moved to Fort Frances as they became involved in the logging business. They felt the need to form a fellowship group so Bible studies were started by Phil Friesen, a minister from Stratton. Later, Harvey Barkman led these Bible studies. After Harvey Barkman left the community, the group decided it wished to meet on Sundays and to form a congregation.

The group contacted Ben Friesen of the Evangelical Mennonite Conference. A meeting at "Gramma's Pizza" in Fort Frances confirmed strong interest in beginning a congregation. Friesen then made arrangements for visiting ministers to speak at the fellowship's Sunday services then held at the West End Hall (a skating rink).

Henry & Tina Kornelsen with Evelyn Hicks in 2000

Henry and Tina Kornelsen of Ridgewood, MB felt the call to be church planters and came to Fort Frances on 1 July 1987 to be the group's first pastor. Their enthusiasm, friendliness and energy greatly encouraged the work. The fellowship became a chartered church within the Evangelical Mennonite Conference at a special service on 1 May 1988. There were eleven members and three associate members at that time.

Attendance increased and Sunday school space was required. The Jehovah's Witness hall on Webster Ave. became available, and with assistance from the conference, other churches and generous individuals, the building was purchased. The dedication service took place on 27 November 1988. In 1990 the congregation added a basement to the building. In 2003 there was a "facelift" with new siding, doors and a new sign.

Evangelical Mennonite Church in Fort Frances.

By 2003 average Sunday service was approximately 45-60 people. Although Fort Frances EMC was initially considered a mission church, within several years the congregation was debt free and self-supporting. The church held two Bible Studies a week and supports a youth group that meets regularly throughout the year. The congregation has also held a camping weekend each fall for church familes and others. The congregation's goal to extend God's love to all who enter the church.


Messenger (13 January 1989): 8; (27 May 1988): 11.

Additional Information

Address: 605 McIrvine Road, Fort Frances, Ontario

Phone: (807) 274-2328

Website: Evangelical Fellowship Church

Denominational Affiliation: Evangelical Mennonite Conference

Evangelical Fellowship Church Pastoral Leaders

Henry Kornelsen 1987-1992
John Hiebert 1992-1994
Interim Arrangements 1994-1997
Jeff Plett 1997-

Evangelical Fellowship Church Church Membership

Year Membership
1990 24
1995 15
2000 25
2005 33
2010 35
2015 40

Author(s) Evelyn Hicks
Date Published September 2003

Cite This Article

MLA style

Hicks, Evelyn. "Evangelical Fellowship Church (Fort Frances, Ontario, Canada)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. September 2003. Web. 22 Sep 2021. https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Evangelical_Fellowship_Church_(Fort_Frances,_Ontario,_Canada)&oldid=172181.

APA style

Hicks, Evelyn. (September 2003). Evangelical Fellowship Church (Fort Frances, Ontario, Canada). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 22 September 2021, from https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Evangelical_Fellowship_Church_(Fort_Frances,_Ontario,_Canada)&oldid=172181.

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