Bible Fellowship Assembly started in the home of Chester and Marion Donaldson in 1963 at 90 Legion Drive, in South Porcupine. Each came with a desire to simply meet with the "Lord Jesus", remember the Lord in the breaking of bread, obey his word, fellowship together and pray. Some of the original members also included Len & Aune Bell.
The “Round” chapel building was erected on 228 Huot St in South Porcupine and meetings continued until 1973. In 1974 a new larger building was constructed that included a full basement; the bulk of the labour coming from Chester Donaldson. Bible Fellowship Assembly continued to see growth as new families were added during the 1980s. During the late 1980’s the growth of the church was now too great for the seating and parking. A series of meetings were initiated by the elders to decide how to proceed.
One of the important decisions reached at this time was the decision that the new larger building needed to be fully wheel chair accessible and with all areas on one level. Within two years a design for the new building was completed and land was purchased. In 1990 the sod turned at new location at 207 Lawrence, Porcupine, and a new building projected was initiated. The old building was sold to Timmins Trinity Christian School in 1991, and for about six months, meetings of BFA were held in a local recreation hall. During construction, Chester Donaldson organized much of the labour, with Terry Budd and Phil Donaldson providing excellent leadership and engineer skills. Whole families were often involved at the construction site. Some of those families involved with swinging hammers, installing drywall, roofing, painting and clean up during building construction were: Rod Baker's, Len Bells, Ted Bendell's, Terry Budd's, Yves Blouin's, Stan Campsall's, Chester Donaldson's, Phil Donaldson's, Rich Fennel's, David Hook's, Dave Jenkinson's, Steve Osawa's, Tom Morrish's, John Miller's, Gord Trimble's, and Don Wyatt's. Many others came from miles around to assist in the construction as well. The first meetings in the new Bible Fellowship Assembly building were held in February of 1991, with the final completion of the sanctuary and full meetings held there in 1993.
From 1993-2000 the Sunday School continued to be large with Christmas musical pageants sometimes involving 50 or more students.
Music has played an important part of our history, with Music Nights happening three or four times a year for many years. Beginning in 2017 we joined other Evangelical churches to organize Prayer and Worship Nights called "One Voice Timmins." These have been an excellent times of corporate worship and prayer.
Our kids outreach clubs varied as the needs changed. In the early 80’s the boys club was led by Rod Baker, Yves Blouin and Dave Jenkinson and was called Frontier Boys. The girls club was organized by Linda Baker, Geeta Blouin, Georgia Budd, and Aune Bell, called “Club M & M” for Martha and Mary. During the next few years the girls clubs program started as “Pioneer Clubs”. For several years, Pioneer Clubs program was held for all children at the Chapel. After that we had a new mixed group Kidz Klub that attracted new children eager to learn more about the Bible. But then COVID….and this has led to a temporary closure of the Kidz Klub. Hopefully this will resume in the near future.
BFA Bible teaching is usually practical and consecutive. It was decided long ago that our deacons and elders would do the bulk of the teaching and preaching. Most of the books of the Bible have been preached on. Recently we concluded a series in Hebrews; now we are working on “Lessons from Life Stories” of some Old Testament characters.
Regarding recent improvements to the chapel facilities: During the summer of 2019, the BFA parking area was resurfaced and lines were repainted. During the summer of 2020, trenching and improvements to the internet with faster cable speed means that we can now reach many more on our live streamed services.
The Bible Book Ministry of Harmony House came to its conclusion in Dec. 31st 2017. Here is a brief past history: Chester and Marion Donaldson came to this area in 1947, and realized that Bibles and Christian books and supplies were not conveniently available. It was not long before they contacted R. Gordon Mitchell in Toronto who had a Christian bookstore and got an agency so they could serve others by helping to provide these supplies. A shelf or two in their basement was used for the stock, and as children grew up and left home, more space was devoted to this ministry. When the Donaldsons were involved in the beginnings of Northland Bible Camp in 1958, the distribution of Bibles and Christian books was viewed as part of this ministry. During the summer a corner of the Dining Lodge was designated as the Book Nook, and the stock returned to the basement of their home in the fall. It was called ‘Norbica Books’ (NOrthland BIble CAmp Books). Financial records were kept separate from those of the camp operation so that no money donated to the camp as a charitable organization was used for the expenses of the store. After twenty years there was an opportunity to move the business to the Porcupine Mall so on May 13, 1982 ‘Harmony House’ was opened. For 35 years this ministry continued to serve thousands at this location. However, with internet shopping habits and the easy internet access to many excellent Bible helps, it was agreed that Harmony House would officially close as of Dec. 31St, 2017. All of the BFA appreciated the many lives which have been touched and blessed through this past ministry.