There’s a new hand at the helm at Clearwater Community Baptist Church.
“I took over as pastor on Sept. 1,” said Mike Kiewitt. “My predecessor, Tim Pacquette, is now the executive director of Sunnybrae Bible Camp near Salmon Arm. He did a good job of bringing people here. I have some big shoes to fill.” With 30 to 65 or 70 regular attendees, the church has one of the largest congregations in the area.
Kiewitt comes to Clearwater after serving 5 1/2 years as the associate pastor for adult ministries at the Winnipeg Evangelical Free Church.
He grew up in North Delta and got his undergraduate and master’s degree from ACTS Seminary in Langley.
“This is a very kind community,” he said of his first impressions of Clearwater. “I’ve been impressed by the people. They seem hardy. They’ve endured a lot over the past few years. I really enjoy how down-to-earth they are.”
The new pastor said he has been impressed by the programs the church offers, such as the Tuesday Morning Coffee program for women.
“It’s really neat,” he said. ‘The women get together and really support each other.”
A new program he would like to see introduced is PREP, which stands for Preventions and Relationship Enhancement Program.
“It helps people make their relationships better … more bulletproof to divorce and separation,” he said.
Other marriage related programs he is looking at include Laugh Your Way to a Better Marriage and the Alpha Marriage Project.
Kiewitt noted that this is not his first visit to the North Thompson. His father worked for Ebco Industries in Abbotsford and sometimes came here to make repairs for Clearwater Timber Products when it was managed by Frank Capostinsky.
He and his wife, Laurena, have a 16 year old daughter, Alison, and a 14-year-old son, Joshua.
“After living in Winnipeg, it’s nice to be back in the mountains,” said Kiewitt. “I look forward to learning how to hunt and finding where the best fishing spots are..”