Strategies for Community Impact: How 3 Pastors and Their Churches Are Making a Difference
What will it take for the church to regain its place in the center of our culture? I posed this question in a panel discussion with three visionary leaders: Tom Elenbaas, Harbor Churches; Mark Jobe, New Life Community Church; and Dave Ferguson, Community Christian Church. (You can see the full conversation here.)
What will it take for the church to regain its place in the center of our culture? Three community-minded pastors discuss how they are strategically building their churches for community impact.
In our conversation, I probed for insights on:
- how to discover your community's greatest needs
- ways to connect community outreach with sharing the gospel
- strategic ways to regain a seat at the table among civic leaders
Though their congregations are located in different geographic settings—urban and suburban—each pastor shared innovative ideas and strategies for building for community impact based on their unique contexts and their specific callings as pastors:
Tom Elenbaas is the Senior Pastor of the Harbor Churches, a multisite church in the greater Grand Rapids area. He has also served as a youth pastor, a pastor at the University of Michigan campus, a Spiritual Formation Pastor, and a church planter. Tom is passionate and involved not only in local church planting and seeking to develop new multisite strategies, but also in leadership development and catalyzing global church planting movements.
Mark Jobe is the president of Moody Bible Institute, and the founding pastor of New Life Community Church in the city of Chicago. He and his wife Dee have seen New Life grow from a handful of people to several thousand meeting at over 25 locations with over 40 worship services each weekend. Mark is also the founder of New Life Centers, an organization focused on helping youth in underserved areas of Chicago. Mark is the author of UNSTUCK: Out of Your Cave into Your Call.
Dave Ferguson is an award-winning author, founding and lead pastor of Chicago’s Community Christian Church, a missional multi-site community considered one of the most influential churches in America. Dave is also the visionary for the international church planting movement NewThing and president of the Exponential Conference.
Watch the entire panel discussion and let us know in the comments how your church is gaining impact and influence in your community.