Pastor Marco Ste-Marie of Rimbey United Church has spearheaded a new project called ‘Walking Through Rimbey’ to shine a light on various agencies and non-profit organizations. Photo submitted

Pastor Marco Ste-Marie of Rimbey United Church has spearheaded a new project called ‘Walking Through Rimbey’ to shine a light on various agencies and non-profit organizations. Photo submitted

‘Walking Through Rimbey’ continues to gather steam

Pastor Marco Ste Marie launched the project, aimed at building community connections, earlier this year

‘Walking Through Rimbey’ continues to help connect the citizens of Rimbey with various services that are available to them.

Rimbey United Church’s Pastor Marco Ste-Marie launched the project back in February, which consists of sitting down with various agencies in town to learn more about them and then to share the videos on social media.

Ste-Marie said it’s a way to build awareness about these agencies and services and also hopefully to help them tap into fundraising possibilities as well.

“It’s all had a good response,” he said, adding that the episodes are available to view on each organization’s Facebook page as well as that of Rimbey United Church.

To date, he has done three segments including one with the local library and another with folks from FCSS.

Ste-Marie has explained that it’s also a way to use his platform as a leader in the community. It’s not from the church; but from his own involvement in town.

One of the latest organizations he connected with was the Boys and Girls Club, which in turn benefited from the exposure.

“That was really my hope,” he said, adding that coming up, Big Brothers, Big Sisters will be highlighted as well.

He even has a list of upcoming interviews, and instead of having them clocking in at 15 minutes each, he’s considering having shortened segments and breaking them down to focus on different aspects of a given organization.

“Hopefully, we can get an even wider audience,” he said.

“I’m a minister – I’m not an interviewer,” he added with a laugh. “But what I envision for Walking Through Rimbey is that I just want to keep updating people and also get into helping the non-profits in the area to fundraise as well,” he explained.

He added that he’s been surprised and gratified as the wide reception the project has garnered so far.

“What I find enjoyable about it is that I get to know non-profit organizations that I didn’t really know before,” he said.

“I get to know them and I get to connect with them,” he added. “I also think what is most rewarding for me is I can use my voice and my position to help and to support them,” he explained.

“That is very rewarding. Because I’m a public leader in town, I can use that to support other people. And that’s what I enjoy the most.”

Ste-Marie also encourages other non-profits to reach out to him if they’d be interested in being featured on ‘Walking Through Rimbey’. “I would love that! Actually, I asked my congregation that if they had any people they could direct me to I would love that. So yes, if the public at large could contact me, that would be great.

Folks can email Ste-Marie at pastormarcostemarie@gmail.com.

Meanwhile, despite the impact of the pandemic, Ste-Marie has been keeping busy over the past many months offering ways for the community to connect.

He hosted a book club in the fall which went really well.

“I thought to myself at the time, okay, if we have four or five people it’s going to be pretty amazing, and we had 18 people signing up for it! We had four sessions through the month of September,” he said.

Currently, services at Rimbey United Church are on hold but Ste-Marie streams services every Sunday morning.

Initially, in-person services were stopped for about six months starting last March, then the church did reopen from about September to December.

And then from December till now, in-person services are again on hold until further notice.