Historical Sketch: Surrey Mennonite Church

Surrey Mennonite Church, a ministry serving the needs of Japanese immigrants, had its beginning through the efforts of retired missionary Anna Dyck. Tsutomu and Miwako Tada, who had immigrated to Canada in 1982 from two Mennonite churches in Japan and were acquainted with Dyck, challenged her to begin planting a Mennonite church in Surrey when Dyck retired to the area after serving in Japan for 38 years.

Through outreach efforts by the Conference of Mennonites in British Columbia, Surrey Mennonite Church began services in 1992. Former missionaries to Japan George & Martha Janzen gave early leadership to the group after their retirement in 1995. Taiwanese and Korean immigrants as well as Japanese have been part of the congregation.

Dyck remained active with Surrey Mennonite until she moved to Drake, Saskatchewan in 1998. At that time Takahiko Yoshiyuki was called to be pastor. After a year, differences in vision for the congregation led to a division and the beginning of the Mennonite Japanese Christian Fellowship, which Yoshiyuki left to lead. When long-term missionaries Peter & Mary Derksen returned to B.C. from service in Japan in 2000, they also pastored Surrey Mennonite alongside the Janzens until 2008.

Today the church is small, with only five members. Formerly they met in the facilities of Living Hope Christian Fellowship in Surrey, but as of September 2011 they meet in the home of congregational chairperson Harry (Hiroshi) Takeda. At this time the group has no pastor, but at weekly worship services they often listen to recorded sermons by George Janzen or Peter Derksen.