In the Fall of 1989 Steve and Jan moved to
Steve and Jan soon met some high school students, some became followers of Jesus, and they started a home group meeting one night a week. God did a powerful work in these young people, and many of their friends joined them in following Jesus. Then some of their parents saw what Jesus had done in the lives of their kids, and they became interested, started following Jesus, and started their own home group.
Through these early years Jesus saved more and more people, and more home groups were started. We also had picnics and weekend retreats together.
We soon saw that we needed a time when all the home groups could meet together for worship and for more detailed Bible-teaching, so we started meeting Sunday evenings, first at Steve and Jan’s home, and then at Williams Elementary School.
When we ran out of room at Williams we moved to Pioneer High School, and met there on Sunday mornings. It was during this time that Steve was able to stop his real estate work and pastor full-time.
After a year or so we moved to our present location at Allen at Steinbeck Middle School. During these years we continued to meet in smaller home groups during the week, and to meet all together for worship and Bible teaching on Sunday mornings.
In the year 2000 God stirred us to consider the plight of unreached people groups, and we sent our first team to help missionaries bring the good news of Jesus into a closed Muslim country (no details for security reasons). Soon thereafter an earthquake hit one of the most closed parts of this country, destroying thousands of homes, but opening a door for us (and other churches) to send teams to rebuild homes and share the gospel, which we have done almost every year. The result of these teams is that a handful of individuals have become followers of Jesus, and they are meeting together regularly.
In 2003 we were honored to send one of our young couples as missionaries to another closed country in Central Asia (no details for security reasons), to take the good news of Jesus to an unreached people group. We regularly send a team of people to support and encourage them, and we continue to support them with prayer and finances.
Up until 2006 we were the Vineyard Christian Fellowship of San Jose, affiliated with the Vineyard Christian Fellowship movement. But that year the board of the national Vineyard movement made some decisions which we were not able to follow, so we chose to no longer be affiliated with the Vineyard movement, and became the Mercy Hill Church. (You can read more of the details here.)
Then in the summer of 2008 we joined Acts 29, which is a Christian, Evangelical, Reformed, and Missional church-planting movement.
These changes have given us an opportunity to study God’s Word afresh to discover what He calls a church to be, and the result is that we are now united in pursuing these core passions:
Passion for the Bible as the very words of God.
Passion for Jesus and His work on the Cross.
Passion for the Holy Spirit and His gifts.
Passion to equip strong singles, marriages, and families.
Passion for Christ-centered community.
Passion for every-member ministry.
Passion for pursuing Jesus’ mission.
That’s our story. Or actually, part of our story. Because, by God’s grace, we believe the best part of our story is still to come