Amazing Grace at Grace New Life Mennonite Church

“Grace New Life Mennonite Church is very much different from what it was before we joined MCEC,” says Pastor Sririsack Saythavy. “We are getting stronger under the umbrella of MCEC. The leadership is strong and membership is strong. It is very good.”

Grace New Life is a congregation of approximately 45 people who meet in the heart of Hamilton. Predominantly from Laos, they worship in both Lao and English. “We have a bilingual service,” says Sririsack. “I preach in English and in Lao.” Grace New Life has always had English-speaking individuals attending their services. Each week Sririsack prepares his sermon and PowerPoint slides in both English and Lao, translating as he speaks so that all will understand. “I prepare my sermon sheet in English but the English-speaking people tell me that they don’t need it because they understand!” he says.

“If everyone takes a part of the ministry, we serve the Lord together.”

Pastor Sririsack also holds down a “nine to five” job outside of ministry. Because of this, and since joining MCEC, Grace New Life has developed a strong leadership board. The board serves the church, visiting and attending to the day-to-day needs of the congregation. This allows Sririsack to focus on the spiritual development of the congregation — the morning worship service and the weekly prayer meeting. “If everyone takes a part of the ministry, we serve the Lord together,” he says. Sririsack explained that this has been a positive change since Grace New Life has become a part of MCEC. Because of the example and encouragement of MCEC congregations and leaders, Sririsack has helped to guide Grace New Life toward this new way of working together in team ministry. “The pastor is a servant leader,” he says. “We work together as a team and serve the Lord according to the gifts that God has given to each of us individually.”

Grace New Life Mennonite Church joined MCEC in 2012 as an emerging congregation, now known as provisional membership. This April they officially became a full member congregation in the MCEC community of congregations. “We look forward to being a full member of MCEC,” says Sririsack. “We ask that MCEC pray for Grace New Life to become stronger so that we not only receive the benefit from MCEC, but we will be part of the blessing to MCEC as well.”

You can reach them to welcome them at Grace New Life Mennonite Church, Pastor Sririsack Saythavy,