Our Hosts    

harvey-june-sawatzkyThe Sawatzkys moved from Saskatchewan to Enderby in 1966, where Harvey began a Medical Practice, from which he retired in 1995.  In 1974 they moved to this present location and began raising Morgan horses.  Harvey has sung tenor as a soloist and in numerous quartets, first as a student in Bible School, then University, and during his professional life.   Since moving to Enderby, Harvey and June have continued to use their musical gifts. An instrumental recording of mostly older Hymns, called “Our Heritage,” produced and recorded by June, debuted at “Singin’ Good News”, 2001.

God has blessed us here at Birch Meadow Farms, with beautiful surroundings and facilities for raising our Morgan horses.  In 1998, while part of the group “Servant Heart”, we decided to combine our love of Gospel music and our facilities, by sharing our music abilities, and inviting other musicians to share their talents also.  Thus our first “Singin'” was born. We were amazed at the interest, and with the encouragement from those who attended to “do it again.”  The following two years saw the attendance double then triple. Christian friends and the surrounding community have been so supportive, giving of their time and energy, to make this a very successful event.

We welcome you to the twentieth, praying that God will bless you. May you be spiritually uplifted, by the music and your time with us this weekend.

Fraser Valley Quartet

fraser-valley-quartet-2We are four ordinary guys who might not make a lot of claims about ourselves, except that we seek to worship the God who is alive and active in our broken world, and long to see revival in our churches. The words of the songs we sing – some old, some new – minister to us as much as anyone. As long as the words and music continue to bless our audiences, whether they’ve heard the gospel preached a thousand times before or they need to hear it just once, we’re going to keep on singing. We pray that you will enjoy our smooth blend of four-part harmony, because it’s a joyful sound that we make, but more importantly we pray that God would bless you and keep you wherever you’re at in life. We also pray that through our music, The Fraser Valley Quartet might “do life” with you now: encouraging you, praying with you, and praising with you, because on that day when every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus is Lord, we’re all going to be praising together.

Formed in 2014, the Fraser Valley Quartet currently includes Brian Shauf (tenor), Rick Brands (lead), Brayden Hirsch (baritone), and Gary Van Ry (bass).

Three and Company

three-companyThree and Company is a contemporary southern gospel trio from Alberta, Canada with smooth harmonies and songs to uplift and encourage the church body. They have been singing together as a trio since 2000.  The group is a Member of Canada’s Gospel Music Assocation.

Brent Anderson  from Leduc, AB grew up singing in the church.  His family was active in the local church and this lead to opportunity to sing starting at a young age. He was the front man of the christian rock group “The Undertakers” from Wetaskiwin for several years before coming to his senses, cutting his hair and putting on a suit and singing real music. Brent is married to Valerie and they have twin boys, Mason and Silas, now 11 years old. Brent works full time as well as being a sales representative for a jewelry company and working as a artist rep for 145 Live Solutions.

Dianne Johnson  was born in Biggar, SK and enjoyed growing up in a large musical family. She is one third of a set of triplets, and has one sister and ten brothers. Dianne sang with her family growing up in Biggar, singing in church and festivals. She is married to a wonderful guy, Dale (who is writing this) for 38 years and they have twin girls, Kandis (Haliburton) and Kristin (Cooknell). Both her girls are married, Kandis has a son Jasiah and twin girls Jaydah and AaLiyah. Kristin has a toddler, Clive who is 16 months old. Dianne works at a ladies clothing store, CLEO, in Edmonton.

Dale Johnson  born in Lloydminster, SK also grew up in the church.  He grew up in a pastors home and was involved in singing and playing instruments in church. Married to Dianne for 38 years, twin girls Kristin and Kandis, two great son-in-laws Chris Cooknell and LaRonn Haliburton, and four grandchildren, Jasiah (11), twin girls AaLiyah (7) and Jaydah (7) and Clive (16 months). Dale loves to travel, play tennis and listen to Enlighten on SiriusXM radio. He works full time in Leduc.

Sweet Presence

Sweet Presence is a full sweet-presencetime family based group located in the Pacific Northwest. Made up of Ernie, Dolly, Greg, and Corey, Sweet Presence travels in both the United States and Canada sharing their message through southern gospel music.

You may have seen this group at various southern gospel events, at one of the National Quartet Convention venues, or on stage with the likes of Poet Voices, Carolina Boys, the Dixie Melody Boys, and many others. No matter where you have seen them, you’re sure to have heard some of the finest harmony and spirit filled ministry that music has to offer.

With over 35 years of travelling in southern gospel music, Sweet Presence offers a concert experience that appeals to both young and old with songs like “He Keeps On Blessing Me” to “God Walks The Dark Hills” and “Ring The Bells Of Heaven”.

The next time you hear of Sweet Presence being in your area, be sure to attend! It will be a life changing experience without a doubt! There are a lot of ways that you can describe todays list of full time southern gospel artists, but this group is best described by the name itself…. “Sweet Presence”

Good News Quartet

good-news-quartetIn the spring of 2001 some folks from the Broadview Evangelical Free Church in Salmon Arm BC, decided that they would like to get together once a month to sing the old hymns.  Soon there were people from many other churches who joined us.  One such evening that fall, four men attending this “Songfest” decided they would like to sing together in a male quartet.  Thus the Good News Quartet was formed.

Charter members are Reinhard Liebich as first tenor and Harvey Sawatzky as second tenor.  Abe Stobbe singing bass joined the group in the fall of 2008, and Ernie Wedel replaced our former baritone in the fall of 2010. Randy Davidson, singing baritone also, sang bass in the quartet a few years ago.  June Sawatzky does some of the music arrangements and sound tracks and accompanies the group at the keyboard.

Our desire is to present the Good News of the Gospel in word and song, and just as the Holy Spirit is ministering to us as we sing; our prayer is that He will also minister to our audience.

Garry Jespersen

garry-jespersen06Garry Jespersen, a retired businessman, is a talented saxophone, piano, and vocal musician.  He lives in Kelowna , B.C.   His ten recordings “Musical Moments” are available on CD.  Eight of these are easy listening Gospel music favourites, one of classic love songs, and a Christmas CD.  Presently Garry is working on the production of his 11th recording.

For a number of years Garry and Nora had the opportunity to travel and minister in word and music in B.C., Alberta, Washington, and Arizona. Garry says, ” It  has been a real blessing, and we thank God for it.”  Garry still is active in this ministry locally.

Nora went to be with the Lord June 2, 2014 after a long struggle with Alzheimer’s. She was such a sweet lady, and is missed greatly.

Garry was blessed to find someone to share and encourage in life. In July 2015 he and Vi Rempel were married.

We know you will be blessed and encouraged in your walk with the Lord through Garry’s music.

Neil Degraw

Neil started playing Hawaiian guitar when he was 17 years old and got his first steel neil-degraw001guitar when he was 19. At that time pedal steel guitar was a brand new instrument. He taught Hawaiian guitar for the Ontario Conservatory of Music and the Academy of Music and had up to 100 students per week.

He played for Prince Philip in 1962, was part of the gospel group “The New Covenant Children” who played the Montreal Summer Olympics in 1976 and recorded and toured with Joanne Cash (Johnny Cash’s sister). He’s also played with Jerry Goff and the Singing Goffs, the Antone Indian Family and Grand Ole Opry stars, Mac Wiseman, Carl and Peral Butler and Red Sovine. He has won the Canadian Gospel Music Association’s instrumentalist of the year award four times.

Neil feels blessed to be able to share God’s gift to him and one of the loves of his life.

Pete & Shirley Unrau

unrauPete Unrau is a dynamic and humorous communicator, with 58 years of pastoral ministry in both the US and Canada. His gift of speaking on the joys and trials of life, always bringing people back to a personal God and His unchanging Word, makes this man a delight to any audience. He and his wife, Shirley have traveled and spoken widely across the US & Canada and in 63 countries of the world. They have been on staff at Power To Change (formerly Campus Crusade for Christ) for 17 years. They are the founders of OASIS RETREATS, a vital SOUL CARE ministry of help and healing for weary and/or wounded pastors and missionaries from around the world. They also have frequently team-taught at FAMILY LIFE CONFERENCES all across Canada.

Since retirement from P2C they have remained active as Interim Pastor and speaking at numerous churches and Retreats. Pete also has a vital ministry of mentoring numerous younger pastors and Christian leaders in the Okanagan. He has been invited to come regularly to Viet Nam for 2 week periods to teach pastors of the Under Ground Church.

They have 4 married children, who are all actively involved in their churches. All 3 sons are ordained ministers. They also have 10 grandchildren (one is in heaven now), and two great grandchildren.

Both Pete & Shirley Unrau are graduates of Briercrest Bible College. Pete also obtained a Master’s degree from Western Oregon State University.