Mike & Jocelyn Fornwald, Penticton Vineyard

Tina-Marie Axenty, Nov 11, 2020, 5:55 PM
Vineyard Canada Global Moderator
Mike & Jocelyn Fornwald.jpg

Mike and Jocelyn Fornwald met in 2000 where they both worked at the Feast Church in Kamloops as the youth pastor and office administrator.  Mike was (and still is) a fun-loving, risk-taking, Jesus-loving passionate man that caught Jocelyn's attention.  Their office romance stared and soon they were dating and married in the fall of 2002.  Mike took a year off from Youth Pastoring in 2004 and the pair took on the leadership of the the Jesus School, a one-year discipleship program for young adults where they found themselves living with 9 students, another leader and expecting their first child.

As the year ended and the school doors were closing, Mike got a call from Abbotsford Vineyard to interview for the youth pastor position. Before Jocelyn even got out of the hospital with their firstborn, Mike was traveling back and forth for interviews and meetings. Two months later their bags were packed, and they moved to Abbotsford, BC.  The church was on rocky ground at the time and experienced a church split 8 months after they started working there.  Mike and Jocelyn found themselves working at the Bridge Church for 4 years where they also walked through Mike's cancer diagnosis, treatment and the birth of their twin daughters shortly thereafter.  There is more to the story regarding that season in life than can be written in this article. Gratefully he has been cancer free for more than 13 years now.

In 2010 Mikes job at the Bridge ended and they found themselves asking God what was next for them. Gary Stephens, the Abbotsford Vineyard Lead pastor, texted Mike and asked if he would be interested in coming back to work at the Vineyard. In November 2010 they found themselves back at the Abbotsford Vineyard where Mike enjoyed working with both youth and adults, fell in love with the Casa de Luz Children's center in Mexico and led many missions' trips for the next 10 years.  They also welcomed their fourth and final child into the world in 2016.

In 2018 the Lord started talking to them about the Penticton Vineyard and moving there to lead the church. Both Mike and Jocelyn were opposed to the idea at first but after a year of the Lord's relentless pursuit, many conversations and praying about this crazy idea, Mike and Jocelyn picked up the phone and called Hart Loewen, lead pastor of the Penticton Vineyard, and shared that they thought the Lord was asking, inviting, telling them to move to Penticton, to take his job and lead the church. That phone call started a flurry of talks, interviews and many 'yes and amen' moments for both Mike and Hart. Following Jesus is never boring and often never what we plan.

In the summer of 2019 Mike, Jocelyn and their four children moved to Penticton, BC, where Mike took the position of Lead Pastor.  They were welcomed with open arms into a thriving community built on prayer, generosity and dedication in all areas to the Lord.  They have fallen in love with their church family and are thankful for the way God leads and provides.

For Jocelyn, the Vineyard has always felt like coming home as she first started attending what was then New Life Vineyard in Kelowna, BC, in high school. Jocelyn is finding new freedom and opportunity to preach and teach in her new church. Mike and Jocelyn both have a passion for worship, the word, community and revival. They look forward with anticipation to what God will do in them and in the Penticton Vineyard.