A dynamic and growing group of Christian Reformed Home Missions-sponsored churches and leaders has taken root in and around Kansas City, Mo.
The ministry cluster—a group of pastors and leaders who gather to pray, share resources, and develop a vision for their community—started several years ago when church planter Kevin Schutte planted Pathway Community Church in the upscale Kansas City suburb of Olathe.
Two years ago Kurt Rietema, who worked for a time as an intern at Pathway, started another church plant, which uses Christian community-development principles in the poor, ethnically diverse, urban Kansas City neighborhood of Argentine.
More recently Ryan Pelton arrived and is planting New City Church, also in the Kansas City metropolitan area.
Another Christian Reformed pastor, Andrew Vanden Akker, will soon join Pelton, New City Church, and the cluster. Schutte says he believes that it will not be long before a fourth ministry will start alongside these three.
Home Missions’ West Central U.S. regional team leader Jerry Holleman says other clusters are taking shape in the region, including one in Denver, Colo., and another in Texas.
“We want to encourage cluster leaders to develop and expand increasing numbers of clusters,” Holleman says. “These clusters can share what they have learned and experienced, and new clusters can develop that are focused on mission.”
About the Author
Ben Van Houten is a senior writer for Christian Reformed Home Missions.