This is the story of how DOVE Canada was birthed. The first invitation for DOVE to come to Canada came in the summer of 1996 when two pastors, Al Remley and Ken Hall separately contacted DOVE about coming to Canada to present Helping You Build Training Seminars. This was training to help cell church leaders become effective in reaching the lost using the cell church vision.
The elders from New Life Covenant Church in Kitchener attended one of the seminars. After attending the seminar they wrote a letter asking how their church could become a part of DOVE International. This was the first time a church in Canada had initiated becoming a part of the DOVE International family of churches.
In April of 1997 Larry Kreider and Brian Sauder, both members of DOVE International’s Apostolic Council, traveled to Ottawa and Toronto to meet with individuals expressing interest in working with DOVE. It became clear that DOVE Canada was destined to become a reality.
To develop a long term presence in Canada, DOVE needed to start a legal organization in Canada. So, on Feb 28, 1998 an application was filed with Revenue Canada for charitable status for a new organization called DOVE Christian Fellowship Canada (DOVE Canada). On Jan 25, 1999 legal approval was granted from Revenue Canada.
DOVE Canada started with three churches in Ontario. Two church plants, one in Russell and one in Sydenham, and the then New Life Church in Kitchener became the original DOVE Canada churches. Conferences and meetings were planned over the next years to help the DOVE Canada churches and for many other churches that were interested in ministry and/or training.
Brian Sauder was commissioned to lead an initial legal board for DOVE Canada with Apostolic leadership to be named later. DOVE believes that there are modern day apostles and that they will help to bring the church to maturity and power to extend the kingdom of God. Later in 2004 the initial DOVE Canada Apostolic Council was commissioned. The current Apostolic Council members are Brian Sauder, Ed Peng, Ginny Peng and Lynn Ironside.
The backbone of DOVE Canada is the churches and the relationships located within them, not conferences, speakers and meetings. We believe that DOVE Canada will fulfill it’s destiny as more churches are planted and existing ones grow, prosper and reproduce. New relationships are developing as the DOVE Partner churches look to “partner together’ to fulfill the great commission.
It is with great anticipation that we look forward to what God has in store for Canada. We see church history as something that is still unfolding in front of us today. DOVE Canada leaders join many other Canadian Christians in praying for a national move of God.
DOVE Canada feels this is a time when God wants to identify and train new leaders for DOVE Canada. Leaders will plant churches and carve out new areas of influence for the Kingdom of God.