New Life News


December 15, 2018

Dear New Life Family and Friends,

I would like to wish you a sincere blessing as we celebrate the birth of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.

This year we have seen God’s mission coming alive in New Life in many ways.

  • We have seen God bring expansion within His church. We have seen slight increases in Sunday attendance, new visitors, more people becoming members, and more people coming to faith in Jesus for the first time.
  • We are learning to take next steps together as Christ’s disciples. Our lives are being changed as we Worship our Lord. We find strength in Christ-centered Community and we find deep fulfillment when we Serve like Jesus.
  • Pastor Nathan has led us through several Biblical teaching series such as Uncomfortable, the Upside Down Gospel, A Call To Persevere, Portraits of The Church, Quest For God, and What Do you Expect? – our current advent series.
  • We have seen strong support in missions. This past year we celebrate a total of $165,000 collected and distributed towards our missionaries, local mission agencies, mission partners abroad, and mission trips. We also supported Christian Reformed ministries with a worldwide reach for an additional $96,500.

Even though we have seen God’s work among us this year, there is still much to anticipate as we participate in God’s call on our Church.

I invite you to help us finish this year strong as we position ourselves for an exciting 2018 by making a generous end-of-year financial gift to New Life. Our goal as a church is to receive $136,000 in the month of December towards New Life ministries.

You can make a donation by giving on a Sunday in a giving envelop, by e-transfer (, online (, or through our New Life smartphone app. Please remember to give your gifts by noon on Monday, December 31, 2018 for the gifts to be tax deductible for year 2018.

Thank you for being a part of the New Life Church family. We wish you a most blessed Christmas and a very Happy New Year as we work together to accomplish the vision God has given us.

Together for Christ and His Kingdom,

Mike VanderKwaak

Executive Pastor


Giving Tuesday is a global movement across Canada and around the world for giving and volunteering. It takes place each year on the first Tuesday after Black Friday. It is a time when charities, companies and individuals join together and rally for their favourite causes. In the same way that retailers take part in Black Friday, the giving community comes together for Giving Tuesday. It provides a platform to encourage the donation of time, resources, and talents in order to address local challenges. Together the collective power of a unique blend of partners: nonprofits, civic organizations, businesses and corporations, as well as families and individuals, expanding our capacity to care for, and empower one another.

This year, New Life Church will be participating in Giving Tuesday (November 27) by extending generosity to one of our key local mission’s partners, Joshua House. With the recent addition of a new 32 acre facility out near Chilliwack Lake, there is much need for financial support, as well as volunteers to help establish this new intake house. For more detailed information, please refer to the following link.

There are many traditional ways to give to this very important partnership including dropping off offerings at the church in the form of cash or cheques; however, we would like to highlight our new online giving platform as a great way to donate to this cause.

We have just released our New Life smartphone app and it is an easy and safe way to give online. The app can be downloaded from the Google Play store here, or the Apple App store here. As well, you can give through our website, or by text. For more details on these two options, visit the “give” page on our website here.

At New Life we are thankful for the long standing partnership that we have with Joshua House recovery ministries. We count it a privilege to partner with this organization this year on Tuesday, November 27, and we thank you in advance for your generosity.

God Bless,

Mike Vanderkwaak


We are incredibly excited to finally release our New Life smartphone app. It is a new way for people to connect with our church every day of the week. Now you can take church with you wherever you go. The app can be downloaded by going to either the Apple app store, or the Google Play store, and searching for “New Life Abbotsford.”

Here are a few of the features of the app:
Select Worship:

  • Fill out a connect card at any time
  • Catch the latest sermon & download the New Life Link during your Life group

Select Give

  • You can now give simply and securely anywhere, any day of the week.
  • You don’t have to set up an account to give. You can use your debit or credit card right on the spot.
  • If you decide to set up an account with, you can set up repeating gifts and manage your giving options. ( charges a small processing fee for this type of giving, you can cover this fee by checking the box)
  • Giving through is tracked in the same way as other types of giving. It is added to your giving record and you will receive a official year end giving receipt from New Life.
  • Find out all the details on our website.

Select Prayer

  • Here you will find a form to easily submit prayer requests. The requests are then passed on to our prayer partners and prayed for throughout the week.

There is also a news feed for you to stay current with all of the New Life happenings, explore our app by pressing “more.” We are so pleased to finally have a fresh and meaningful way for our church community to stay connected!


October is New Life Vine refresh month! We are attempting to get everyone’s profile updated for a couple of reasons. First, it is important that we have updated information for communication and planning purposes. Second, we are planning to launch a church app for smartphones in the month of November and it will be integrated with New Life Vine. Third, there have been a few people ask for printed photo directories and so it is important that all information is current. On October 14, 21, and 28 we will be asking everybody to log in and update their profiles. After all three of these services, there will be stations set up in the lobby, we will be taking new profile pictures for anyone interested, and for extra fun – there will be, yes, SNACKS!! Please be prepared to stay after the service for a few minutes to help us maintain this very important part of our church community.


I recently sat down with Justin Dudney, our new Life Group pastor here are New Life. I had some questions to ask him about his journey and passion for Life Groups. Many of his answers surprised me and were filled with great depth. I hope you enjoy reading this interview as much as I did conducting it.

So give us a brief overview of your life.

Well, I was born in Pennsylvania, USA. However, when I was only 5 years old, my parents answered the call to the mission field and moved to Costa Rica. So from age 5 to 18 I lived in San Jose, Costa Rica as a MK (missionary kid). I basically grew up there. After graduating, I moved back to the US where I studied for a couple of years in both Kansas and Nebraska doing pre-recs for med school. I originally wanted to be a doctor, but while in university, for a short while I started going down dark pathways, and made some bad choices. Thankfully, during this time God intervened and this was a huge turning point in my life. I then headed back to Costa Rica at age 21. I turned back to my relationship with God and over the next few months decided to make a radical change. After signing up for YWAM, I headed for Australia.

How many years did you spend at YWAM, and at which bases?

I did my DTS at Brisbane, Australia in 2002 and then shortly thereafter joined the staff there. It was there that I met my wife, Nicole, and we were married in 2006. After that, we served at the same base for two more years. Then, In 2008, we moved to India to pioneer a base there with a small group of people. We came back to Canada in 2010 to have our first baby, Levi, with full intentions of returning to India. However, when we tried to go back all of our pathways were blocked, our visa’s didn’t work out, and we found out that a family member was sick so we stayed here in Canada.

You started out as an intern here at New Life, correct? Where have you served and in what capacity?

I started out as unintentional intern in 2011 in the areas of Young Adults and Missions. For the first three years I spent here, I did my LDN (a CRC pastoral studies course) and I have been here ever since.

Why do you do what you do? Help us understand the heart behind what motivates you.

Ever since I have been an adult Christian, my passion has been to get to know the Father better, and then to help others do the same. In short, my personal motivation is to have a deeper relationship with Christ, and my external motivation is to introduce and disciple others into that same journey.

What is the greatest joy in the work that you do?

Seeing others take significant steps to further their relationship with God

What is the greatest joy in your personal life?

Without question, my family. I love spending time with them, falling deeper in love with wife, and raising our four amazing children.

What are your greatest struggles, things that make you sad when you see them?

It makes me sad when I see people make choices that I know are going to cost them dearly in the future; decisions that I know will produce bad fruit rather than good fruit.

From your personal experience, if you could suggest one thing to another person when it comes to the pursuit of God, what would it be?

Above all else, remain in the vine. Your relationship with the Trinity (Father God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit) is everything. It is where you will find direction, strength for your tasks, joy, and motivation to help others. Outside of that space, you will have little to offer.

What are your hobbies?

I love playing sports, especially soccer. It is no secret that I am an avid soccer fan. I used to do a lot of surfing, I enjoy fitness, have a fascination with carpentry, and dabble in cooking.

Your job description at New Life is changing this fall. Rather than leading our Young Adults and Mission’s departments, you will now be heading up Young Adults/Life groups. How did this change come about?

We have spent a lot of time in the past couple of years developing a Future Ministry Plan here at New Life. Along with this plan, came a lot of discussion about our priorities and which areas of ministry we, as staff, would like to champion. One of the areas on the potential list of ministries that needed leadership was Life Groups. I began a conversation about this area, and out of that came the shift.

What is your heart for Life Groups?

I have always deeply valued the idea of life groups. It was an intricate part of my time at YWAM, but even before that, it was a constant in my faith formation and my years growing up as a missionary kid. I believe that in order to be a part of a church body, Sunday service is not enough. It is essential that we get into a small fellowship where we are vulnerable, accountable, and can intentionally seek growth in our faith life together with others. It is necessary for church growth as well as our relationship with God. In the church of Acts, they gathered together, fellowshipped together, and prayed together. However, even when numbers grew, they still met together in small groups. In YWAM India, there were eight of us that met together every day before going out, Then, every night we would come back together to pray and share what had happened. I would like to see that same passion for Life Groups released right here in our church – New Life.


Hello everyone, after a lot of contemplation (as in – deep thought, mostly from Pastor Koen), research (as in – the city park board isn’t really cooperating), and weather speculation (as in – the weather man insists it is gonna’ rain again!), we have decided to re-think our Sunday picnic. The new vision all started with Taylor – it’s no secret folks, she loves her ice cream! Then Cyndi got involved – she is ultra-passionate about toppings! After that, Pastor Nathan chimed in – he loves the idea of hanging out and serving people. Once the rest of the staff factored in, it was all settled. What was supposed to be a re-scheduled church picnic, will now be an ICE CREAM SOCIAL, this Sundae (that is not a typo), September 16, after the service. Please be prepared to stay around, hang out, have fun, and get sticky sweet because our pastors and Life Group elders will be serving up the best sundaes ever! Cheers all – see you there!


It’s coming! June 6th 7:30 PM. Our AGM, Future Ministry Plan update, and more!! Save the date.

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