We believe God partners with His people to make things happen on Earth. He's been doing it this way for millenia, and we still think He's doing that today. People, partnered with God, are how life changing friendships happen, how world moving ideas happen, how purpose filled living happens and how the love driven message of Jesus is advanced. The people below are committed to nothing less than seeing other people's lives transformed by the power of Jesus. They won't give up the mission of taking the message of Jesus to as many as we can while meeting those who are hurting with the compassion of God.
CHRISTOPHER & SHELLY ALLEN
Christopher and Shelly Allen act as the senior leaders for the pastoral and eldership teams. They are responsible for casting the vision and giving direction to the general leadership of the church. Chris' experience comes from being the staffed worship leader of Five Rivers Vineyard as well as spearheading their Jr & Sr High ministry (CrosspointSM) from an attendance of 5 to a student driven service of about 80 students and volunteers weekly. He also currently serves as our student ministry pastor. Sometimes, he accepts large bags of Starbursts and a fridge full of Diet Coke as salary. But only sometimes.
Favorite Movie: Gladiator
Favorite TV Show: Tie between Lost & 24
Favorite Quote: "Pray as though everything depended on God, work as though everything depended on you." - Saint Augustine
Cory serves by directing our weekend and Tuesday night student ministry worship. Having served at several churches leading worship both large and small, and combined with being one of the humblest guys you'll ever meet, he is perfectly suited for the job. Also, he made it several rounds into The Voice, so... that's, at the least, pretty cool. Oh yeah; if you every play a zombie game with him, you might get confused and think he is an actual zombie. We just thought you should be warned about that.
Favorite Movie: Hot Rod
Favorite TV Show: The Walking Dead
Favorite Quote: TBD
Carly faithfully serves as our executive director, helping to lead our church strategically. She brings an administrative edge that cuts through all kinds of tough situations, and having been a part of our church since the dreaming stage (and helping make it a reality), she knows who we are, and the kind of church we want to be become both inside and out. She has a knack for knowing how to tackle conflict and how to continue to move our community one step further in the right direction. Oh, and she loves spreadsheets. She performs planning miracles with spreadsheets.
Favorite Movie: Dirty Dancing
Favorite TV Show: Downton Abbey
Favorite Quote: TBD
Graphics and Media Creator
Shelly leads our graphic design efforts which become more important with every passing social-media-second. Bringing her degree in visual communications to the table, her knowledge in the Adobe Suite is a powerful tool in keeping our community relevant in a media drenched world. She also selflessly supports our church by volunteering in the office every single Friday, treating it like it was a paid job. Her meticulous attention to detail and commitment to systems is core to the heartbeat of our weekly operation. As an aside, if you want some entertainment, just put her and Heath in the same room for a bit; it's sure to get interesting. Bring a shield though; you might have to deflect a flying object.
Favorite Movie: Anne of Green Gables
Favorite TV Show: Gilmore Girls
Favorite Quote: "I don't do quotes" - Shelly Allen
First Impressions Director
Chara leads in developing the atmosphere of our student and weekend services from the moment you enter the parking lot to when you leave. Having a strong creative side, she relentlessly takes on any challenge handed her way when implementing warm, inviting spaces. She's also a go-getter, because, budget or not, she figures it out (often with her own money); so this is one real where she never disappoints. She understands that our worship services are a canvas where we can paint an experience of God's love on peoples' week. Her hyped up personality is lively and perfectly suited for her secondary role as emcee, worship leader and game designer for our student ministry program. While Jesus multiplied bread and fish, Chara somehow multiplies decorations... we asked her to decorate a room at 2am for a video shoot for our fall festival (don't ask us why we were shooting at 2am). We gave her a scarecrow and pumpkin, and somehow, thirty minutes later, the entire room was a decked out fall-splosion. You can check out the fall design she did at the end of the video (starting at 3:02) found here.
Favorite Movie: One Night With the King
Favorite TV Show: Doctor Who/Smallville
Favorite Quote: "Do to others whatever you would like them to do to you.” - Jesus
IN LOVING MEMORY - JOEL BURTON
Joel led our church missions program designed to bring Jesus to those who need it most both through the message and by helping those struggling financially. Being saved in his twenties, he never looked back as he threw his life toward serving Christ and his community in every way he knew how. He become a community icon of sorts after his extraordinary efforts rallied thousands of volunteers to help the masses after a series of devastating tornadoes struck the Miami Valley. He continued to be a community leader as he served on the board of Keep Montgomery County Beautiful, led as CEO of the Living City Project (which cleaned and disposed of 220 tons of trash in a single day by 1,500 volunteers on more than one occasion), led missions to impoverished First Nations reserves and founded Simple Street (an active street ministry designed to bring the hope of Jesus to the lives of those living in the margins of life). Joel was a man that lived what he preached, and he was known to drink a Monster (or five) each day along the way.
On July 31, 2022, Joel was tragically hit and killed by a speeding car while vacationing in Florida. The entire Dayton area mourned together the loss of this great man who genuinely loved people. Over a thousand people gathered at his funeral to celebrate both his life and the Name of the One he served, Jesus.
Favorite Movie: Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory
Favorite TV Show: Mandalorian
Favorite Quote: The extreme limits of wisdom is what society calls madness. - Jean Cocteau