Posted in focus on faith

The Dream of Vision 5 — meet Dean Yurkewich, Grande Prairie AB

Dean and Annette Yurkewich

When Dean Yurkewich talks, people gather and listen. He blew in to a roomful of women who were all enjoying some feminine fellowship and before long, several of us were huddled around listening. Dean is intense and passionate about the dream God gave him and he’s going after it with all he’s got.

During the many years he served in church ministry he was frustrated in his desire to impact the community and get involved with people in a meaningful way because the ones that most needed help wouldn’t think of getting it from a church. Church was the last place they’d go.

So God gave Dean a dream for birthing an entirely different kind of church; one that went to the people instead of waiting for the people to come to it. “Many of the people we meet are angry at God,” Dean reports. “They would never step inside a church. We want to show people who God really is; He’s not who they think He is.”

Dean’s dialogue with a local South African doctor who shared his passion for helping hurting people led to the birth of VISION 5. The doctor has a supply of Dean’s “business” cards on hand and when he encounters people who are in need, he gives them the card that simply says: “In need? Call us. We want to help!” On the back of the card, it reads: “Vision5, We are a community group of volunteers who want to help people in need.

1. Dean and his church (who now gather in homes) pray that God would show them the needs they can meet that can bring glory to God. Depending on the expressed need, Dean utilizes his network of volunteers to get involved in their particular area of expertise, interest, or giftedness.

2. Recognizing that it’s difficult for people to admit they are in need, Dean treats them with dignity and respect and gives them an opportunity to get involved in helping others too. He has seen people with very little, get excited about sharing with others in need. The chance to give back makes people feel needed, worthwhile, purposeful.

3. People who have been helped are invited to join with a house group. The opportunity to gather with like-minded people for mutual encouragement and support is appealing to many of them. “But it’s messy!” Dean says. The type of people he meets every day have “messy” complicated lives and it takes Christlike love and compassion to be willing to pour out your life for others.

“What God has done to show his grace in this Vision 5 venture at times has left me speechless,” Dean says. “At times we have had little money to help people out and God has supplied in ways that blew our minds. Other times he has supplied our needs through folks we never thought possible: a secular private agency that won a bid on an Alberta government contract for providing services to help people find work and housing has given us funding because they so believe in what we are doing. They have directed folks to us who were beyond their ability to help. God would then intervene in such a manner that only He could get the glory.”
Dean has received calls from crack-addicted moms who can’t afford to buy milk for their babies, from disabled people who need help hanging curtains and everything in between. God gives the dream. It sometimes seems impossible to meet. But by following Him, one yes at a time, “dreamers” like Dean Yurkewich are making an impact in his hometown. What’s your God-given dream?


Christian writer and speaker trying to follow God one yes at a time.

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