The Rev. Ken Staniforth sees Sequim Holiness Fellowship’s congregation size as a good beginning. The congregation started last August in the Carlsborg Conference Center; now 15-20 people attend Sunday services in the fellowship’s new building west of Sunny Farms.
“Smallness can be a blessing,” Staniforth said.
“Emphasis is often on the big congregations, but sometimes there can be a lack of fellowship with people being lost in the crowd. Eyeball-to-eyeball fellowship is so important.”
Staniforth said attendees came from a variety of churches to help form the nondenominational fellowship. He said it’s an evangelical Christian, Bible-believing church in the tradition of John Wesley.
“We stress holiness — which is essentially living a life that pleases God,” Staniforth said. “There’s criticism against holiness as a ‘holier than thou’ mentality, but that would be pride. We stress holiness by God’s grace.”
Wesley’s beliefs set the stage for the holiness movement, with churches promoting Christianity as a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Grace means accepting Jesus Christ died as the sacrifice for sin, providing forgiveness and the way to heaven. Holiness churches believe that God also enables the believer to live a life that reflects the purity, grace and compassion of Jesus.
England to Sequim
Staniforth, originally from England, has been in Sequim since 2006 and in the U.S. since 1983. He and his wife, Rosemary, moved to Sequim from the high desert in Southern California, where he was a pastor for nine years in Lone Pine for a congregation of about 50 people.
Before coming to America, he led churches in Birmingham, London and Manchester with congregations upwards of 150 people.
Staniforth comes from a blue-collar, non-Christian background. After joining the Royal Air Force, he was posted in Iraq as a wireless radio operator where he met an American sergeant who led him to God.
Sequim Holiness Fellowship holds Sunday school at 9:45 a.m., a morning service at 11 a.m. and a Sunday night service at 6 p.m.
Staniforth said attendance is about the same on Sunday nights and attendees keep it more informal with a strong emphasis on fellowship.
Church music is a mixture of contemporary and traditional played on a keyboard.
Bible study is at 6 p.m. on Wednesdays.
Attendees are ages 11-97 with a wide spectrum of people, Staniforth said.
A children’s ministry team is ready to go, he said, and they intend to run a Vacation Bible School this summer.
“Our thrust is to reach non-churched children because there are an awful lot of kids who don’t go anywhere,” Staniforth said.
The church splits its ministry donations between local groups such as My Choices and missions such as Voice of the Martyrs and Gospel for Asia.
For more information on Sequim Holiness Fellowship, call 681-8681 or 477-5452.
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