Jeremy and Kristina
ARC Church Plant #812
Washington D.C. Metro Area
What motivated you to plant your church in the D. C. Metro area, and what do you love about your community?
We love the Washington D.C. area with a passion. We lived here for seven years before planting the church, and we fell in love with the people. Washington is a city full of leaders. People move here to make a difference in our country and the world.
It is also one of the most diverse areas of the country culturally, socioeconomically, and politically. This diversity makes our church life vibrant. People from all over the world bring their diverse faith experiences with them, and this creates an environment that is primed for spiritual growth.
What has been one of your greatest moments since planting your church?
Serve Day this year was one of our greatest moments. We have been holding online-only worship services, and we had not seen our church in-person for nearly four months because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our Catalyst family blew our minds! We had close to 100 people serve on Serve Day, and we made an incredible impact in the community. We truly felt it was a momentous day, and this momentum will carry us into the fall.
What has been one of the toughest moments you have experienced in ministry?
This current season has been one of the most challenging times of ministry. Being unable to gather in-person for worship and continuing to lead from a distance in this stress-filled environment has been very difficult. The beautiful thing is that we have seen tremendous fruit come out of this season, and we would not change it.
We have become more passionate about our vision and more flexible in our methods. We are doing things we may never have done if it were not for the pandemic. We are mobilizing our church to serve our community in significant ways and discipling people to live as catalysts in their lives outside of church. It is incredible to see what God has done this year!
What is the biggest change you have seen in yourself since you planted?
We have become more confident of who we are and who we are not and better in tune with the weaker areas of our own spiritual formation. We have become clearer and more passionate about our vision and values. This has strengthened our leadership and our church.
What do you want to share with someone thinking about becoming a church planter?
Spend time with Jesus. Surround yourself with other planters who can encourage you in the journey. Invest in people. Take the leap of faith. Trust God. Prioritize your marriage and family. Save money.
How has being a part of ARC made an impact on your life and family?
I do not know where we would be without ARC. The relationships, equipping, and resources have blessed our lives and our church. The relationships have been the most valuable part of ARC. Before we planted our church, we had calls with more than 30 different ARC pastors to ask for wisdom and advice. Not only did their wisdom benefit us greatly, but we now have relationships with these pastors all over the country.
What was the most significant change in your perspective during this COVID-19 pandemic?
Pre-pandemic, we saw the strength of our church gathered. During the pandemic, we saw the strength of our church scattered. We have numerous stories of how our church has remained connected and has cared for each other and the community. We told our team at the beginning of this pandemic that we were going to focus on two things: caring for our church and caring for our community.
We mobilized 30 dream team members on a response care team to check in by phone with everyone who has ever attended our church. We mobilized group hosts to increase their care and shift their groups online. And we mobilized close to 100 team members to serve our community in significant ways. Our church is stronger and our impact greater because of this pandemic. For those who have leaned in, their spiritual leadership has grown.
How do you want the experience of the COVID-19 pandemic to change your family and church?
We have learned how to do everything from our house, including our children’s schooling and our work. We have consequently had a lot more time together as a family. I hope we can continue to put a greater emphasis on this time together. We have seen our kids grow closer together, and we have grown closer to them during this time.
I hope our church continues to put just as much emphasis on caring, connecting, and serving during the week as we did on Sunday. Pre-pandemic, we put 90 to 95 percent of our energy into Sundays. Now we put more energy into caring, connecting, and serving every day of the week. It has been a game-changer for us! We are hopeful that the best is yet to come, and the harvest is plentiful.