Home   |   Make a Gift   |   Contact Us
Story Moments for Mission

Moments for Mission

New Church Planting Takes Root with Missiongathering

Rev. Rich McCullen at the 2016 Leadership Academy

Rev. Rich McCullen at the 2016 Leadership Academy, an event made possible by New Church Ministry

To take root, our new church movement relies on the nurturing of people like you . . . and church planters like Rev. Rich McCullen.

He was working with teenagers at a parachurch organization, when he noticed that bringing students to a traditional church was challenging because they felt judged for not having a religious background. So, Rev. Rich started a student service, that eventually became a Disciples church, called Missiongathering, thanks to the support of the Pacific Southwest region.

After nesting with an established congregation, Missiongathering San Diego opened its own space in 2006. . . and has thrived ever since.

So has Missiongathering Charlotte, whose planting plans were interrupted by at Recession, but which finally opened in January 2016.

And, so have three more new Missiongathering churches just in the last three years: Issaquah, Thornton and Pasadena.


New Church Movement is nurtured with Potluck

Our new church movement also relies on people like Rev. Rachel Nance Woehler.

For her, the call to form a new kind of church was inspired by the Lord’s Supper.

So, she developed a new dinner-church worship model, “Potluck Church,” centering around a meal to which all are welcome. She then attended Leadership Academy where she established supportive relationships. Later, First Christian Church of Madisonville, KY, offered its gym to host gatherings.

Today, Potluck worships as a pop-up church. Rachel believes it can work anywhere – requiring only a meeting place, communion set, and convener. For existing churches, the Potluck Church worship model can reach a community hungry for meals or conversation.

“Disciples’ history and diverse culture uniquely position us to grow into the church alternatives God is creating today,” she says.

Church Planters like Rev. Rich and Rev. Rachel remain committed to answering God’s call . . . to serve their neighbors, spread the gospel, and make more Disciples every day.

Would you like to answer God’s call? To support the new church movement in our region, and across our Church through New Church Ministry, please give to the 2019 Pentecost Offering, June 2 and 9.