Oasis Church in Medina joins Harvest Christian Fellowship in Albion

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 24 June 2024 at 8:15 am

Jovannie Canales named associate pastor at Harvest

Photos by Tom Rivers: Pastor Jovannie Canales speaks to about 125 people on Sunday at Harvest Christian Fellowship in Albion. Canales was announced as the church’s new associate pastor with plans to become the church’s leader in the future. Tim Lindsay will remain as the senior pastor at Harvest.

ALBION – Two churches with pastors active in the community announced a merger on Sunday.

The Oasis Church in Medina will become part of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Albion. Jovannie Canales, the Oasis pastor the past seven years, is now the associate pastor at Harvest and Tim Lindsay, the Harvest pastor during all of its 37 years, will be senior pastor. Lindsay said the plan is to transition Harvest to Canales being the lead pastor in the future, perhaps next year.

The two pastors became friends through PACT (Pastors Aligned for Community Transformation). That group includes many pastors in Orleans County. Canales and Lindsay found they had the same core spiritual beliefs and also a passion to serve the greater Orleans County community.

“We have similar spiritual DNA,” Lindsay said. “He has a heart for Orleans County.”

Tim Lindsay and his wife Laurie, and Jovannie and Melisa Canales announce that Oasis Church in Medina will merge and become part of Harvest Christian Fellowship.

Canales and his wife Melisa moved from Rochester to Medina seven years ago to lead the Second Church True Disciples of Jesus Christ. The church in May 2023 officially changed its name to Oasis Church. The congregation has been meeting at 2 p.m. on Sundays at the Calvary Tabernacle Assembly of God at 11031 Maple Ridge Rd. Those churches are independent of each other.

Canales and Oasis led a popular Family Fun Day at Butts Park in Medina in August. That event will now be at Bullard Park in Albion on Aug. 10.

Oasis Church has about 35 to 40 regular attendees. Many are Spanish-speaking. Harvest has an interpretive service for people who speak Spanish.

Harvest has about 110 regular attendees. Together, the two churches have about 150 people.

The Rev. Tim Lindsay is the founding pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship and has been with the church for 37 years. He will remain in full-time ministry at Harvest.

The Rev. Lindsay helped start Harvest Christian Fellowship in Albion 37 years ago, when the congregation initially met in the former Albion Firemen’s Rec Hall (now the Elk’s Lodge on East State Street).

Harvest has had its own building for about 34 years on Route 31, across from Bullard Park and completed a 5,000-square-foot expansion in December 2020. The church hosts a popular community kitchen and is an active contributor to many ministries in the community.

Lindsay has been thinking about the church’s leadership long-term in the future, when a new pastor would like the congregation and be a committed community member. He feels confident Canales is that leader.

“I’m a servant of the Lord,” Canales told the congregation on Sunday. “We’re here to fight a good fight together.”

Pastor Jovannie Canales and his family moved from Rochester to Medina to lead a church seven years ago. He said he is committed to ministering to Orleans County.