Meet Our Staff
Byron Knight, Interim Lead Pastor
Pastor Byron grew up in the Victoria area and has called the peninsula his home for over 40 years. He spent 10 years as the youth pastor at Saanichton Bible Fellowship and has been serving at FCC as Associate Pastor since 2007. He and Bev have two teenage daughters, Emily and Rebecca, and are enjoying the adventures of parenting. Byron enjoys board games with his family, gourmet cooking, skiing, fishing and hunting. He loves learning about God through Scripture and sharing that knowledge with the congregation through sermons and Bible studies. He is thankful for the great church family at Friendship.
Ben Coles, Summer Ministry Intern
Ben first started attending Friendship in 2007 and he’s been steadily building his involvement with the church. For the past year and a half he’s been juggling part time work as member of the church staff with full time work toward his Master of Divinity at Carey Theological College. He’s always amazed at what God has in store and he’s ready to answer the call. He grew up in Ottawa but escaped after eighteen winters to Victoria, looking back only long enough to cheer for his beloved Senators (when they have a good season…). Ben and his beautiful wife Emma have two growing boys and are delighted to call the peninsula their home.
Sharon Baerg, Worship & Women's Pastor
Sharon has been on staff at FCC since the fall of 2009 and is excited about serving in both worship and women’s ministries. She has a deep love for God, His Word, and the church and is passionate about worship as an expression of our love for Jesus. She has served in various churches in both worship and women’s ministry and loves to see people have an opportunity to grow in their gifts and their walk with God. She has a passion for learning which led to a diploma in Music and Biblical Studies from Columbia Bible College, several years of study at the University of the Fraser Valley and a degree in Fine Arts and Music from Trinity Western University. Sharon and her husband Randy live in Brentwood Bay and enjoy spending time with their family, Aaron and his wife Alicia, Connor and his wife Sara, Kyle, and their golden retriever Cedar. Sharon loves to visit with friends, paint or play music in her studio, read books, go to the beach, hunt for cool vintage stuff and watch her lads play sports.
Alicia Baerg, Worship Arts and Bloom Women Summer Intern
Hello, my name is Alicia and you may remember me as I was a Summer Intern two years ago under the title of Summer Community Arts Intern and I am excited to be returning this year with a different role where I will be focusing on supporting the Women’s and Worship Arts Ministry, running a variety of events throughout the summer! I am very passionate about worship and the arts, and love seeing how God works to use people’s gifts. This summer as I will be attending and working here at FCC, I’m looking forward to reconnecting with the community to serve and support the amazing ministries already present.
Sarah Davidson, Children's Pastor
Sarah joined our staff in 2012. After obtaining her BA in Christian Ministry she was delighted to return to, and serve, the area where she grew up. She is energized by teaching kids about God, and humbled to be part of their faith journey. In 2013 The Light Magazine published her article, "How to do COOL Children's Ministry", and she was named as one of the "40 under 40" Women in Ministry by womensministry.net in 2016. She also sits on the Peninsula Connections for Early Childhood table where she partners with other community leaders advocating for our youngest peninsula residents and their families. She and her husband Jordan love calling Sidney home and exploring it’s coastal treasures with their one year old daughter, Avaya.
Emily Van Schaik, Children's Ministry Summer Intern
Hey my name is Emily and I am the Kidzone intern for the summer! This is my third year and I am so excited for the incredibly awesome things in store camp wise. Already, we have a record breaking number of kids registered for all three camps, it’s going to be a crazy fun summer. If you would like to get involved, there are partnership opportunities so come find me and we can chat :)
Kurt Friesen, Youth Pastor
Kurt was born and raised in Portage La Prairie, Manitoba. After interning at his local church he felt a strong call to work in the area of youth ministry. He then moved out west to Abbotsford, British Columbia for four years of Bible College in a youth work program. It was here at Columbia Bible College that he met his beautiful wife, Jackie, whom he married in July of 2013. After graduating from CBC Kurt had a brief stint in the construction world before accepting the Youth Pastor position at FCC. He is very passionate to see God's transformative power work in the lives of young people. Kurt also enjoys all board sports, hiking, fishing, the Winnipeg Jets, and a good cup of coffee.
Jamie Besteman, Youth Summer Intern
My name’s Jamie, and I’m the youth intern for the summer! I’m finishing up grade 12 at PCS and heading across the pond to study youth work at CBC in the fall. I’m psyched to hang out with our awesome students this summer, and introduce them to some new events! I’d love to chat with you if you have questions or want to get involved!
Connor Baerg, Young Adult Director
Connor has been involved with FCC for eight years, and has joined the team as our Young Adults Director. He is currently a full time student on his way to receiving a Bachelor of Education from the University of Victoria. He is passionate about worship, prayer and has a desire to see this generation be sold out for Jesus! During his time with YWAM Maui and Surfers for Missions International, he developed a heart for the serving the nations, and looks forward to the awesome adventures that God has in store next. When he isn’t hitting the books, Connor will usually be found outside hiking through the woods, paddling into the waves or strumming his guitar. Connor and his amazing wife, Sara, love this beautiful Island and are so excited to be a part of the future of FCC.
Jackie Friesen, Multi-Ministry Assistant
Jackie has been attending FCC for 4 years, and is excited about serving in multiple ministry areas. She was born and raised in Winnipeg, but growing up in an aviation family, she traveled extensively throughout her childhood. This exposure to the world at an early age catapulted her into obtaining a B.A. in Intercultural Studies at Columbia Bible College, where she met her husband Kurt. Jackie’s primary passion is serving the Lord, and following him wherever he may lead. Being where he places her is always the best, and safest, place to be. Her ultimate desire is to know God, and help make him known to those she serves. Jackie also enjoys all things creative, reading missionary biographies, surfing and exploring the beautiful West Coast!
Patti Hitchman, Office Administrator
Patti has been part of the staff at Friendship Community Church since December 2007. She grew up between Richmond, BC and Mississauga, ON and has lived on the Island with her husband since 1987. Her training and skills from previous jobs help her to provide administrative support to the ministry team and to the congregants at FCC. She has a heart for people and enjoys her position in the church office as it provides a daily challenge and much spiritual growth! Patti has been married for over 30 years and she & Brent have two adult children (Sara & Reid) who also call FCC their church home!! She and her husband still thoroughly enjoy spending time with family which has grown to include a new son-in-law, Connor :) Patti loves to read and learn new things, (especially about essential oils), and loves to explore downtown Victoria & walk by the beach. She looks forward to many more years serving at FCC.
George Hodgson, Hospital Chaplain & Groundskeeper
2018 is my 30th anniversary at FCC. It was the spring of 1988 when I began attending services and within three years I was given the privilege of serving on staff as the associate to Pastor Ernie Kratofil, in April 1991. As a staff pastor I also began my service at Saanich Peninsula Hospital as a volunteer chaplain and have continued to this day. Upon retirement in 2007 I continued in various ministry activities such as Bible studies, prayer times, pulpit supply and funerals, etc. Another of the "hats" I wear at Friendship is property manager, and you can often find me mowing, painting and doing general maintenance here at Friendship most week days.
Tuesday & Thursday 8:30am to 2:30pm
Wednesday & Friday 8:30am to 12:30pm
Appointments are recommended to see pastoral staff (phone: 250-652-2723)