Interview with a Church Planter: The Story Behind City Church

May 19, 2011 // Video Interviews & Discussions

In July of 2011, Trevor and his family moved with 24 others to plant City Church outside Nashville, TN.

How did God call you to plant a church?

I never thought I would plant a church when I moved to RDU 5 years ago.  The answer to this questions is a 5-year journey that culminated in a realization that God was going to reach people with the gospel and transform individuals and cities through gospel-centered churches.  God used the Summit Church to spark a desire to plant and to equip me to do it.  During my time at the Summit, I learned the importance of church planting, watched us send church planters, and heard the stories of life transformation that were happening in their respective cities.  At the same time, the leadership and those around me were affirming my gifts of leadership and preaching to plant a church.  After experiencing God re-orienting my life around the gospel in RDU, I wanted to see that multiply in another city.

Why Murfreesboro?

I get 2 questions quite a bit:  “Where is Murfreesboro?” and “Why would you plant there?”  Murfreesboro is a city of over 110,000 about 30 miles south of Nashville.  It is the fastest growing city in TN and the 12th fastest growing city in the nation.  It is also home to the largest university in the state, Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU), which is 26,000 students strong.

When we first began to explore where to plant a church, we thought we would just pick a large city with few churches.  We landed on San Francisco for a while, but soon realized we were overlooking what God had done in our lives for 10 years in Murfreesboro:  my wife and I were alumni there;  I had worked for 7 years there as the director for a non-profit community organization which gave me good relationships with local pastors, businessmen, and community leaders; my wife and I had loved, served, and discipled several college students during our time there;  and we had good relationships in the community.

This led us to take a vision trip last October (2010).  On that trip, I discovered that the 18-34 year-old demographic was widely unchurched.  The pastors I met with told me they had all but disappeared from churches.  Yet this demographic makes up over 30% of the city, the largest single demographic in Murfreesboro.  In addition, of the 26,000 students at MTSU, under 1,000 are involved in any church or para-church ministry.  All in all, we figured out that Murfreesboro was more than 70% unchurched.  The Bible belt had clearly missed this city.

Learn more or contact us through our website, or on Twitter @BoroCityChurch.