We follow a simple, scriptural model for the ministry. The elders are committed to prayer and teaching and equipping each member for works of service in the kingdom of God. The members, each with unique gifting, carry out the work of the ministry. Thus, the “Ministry Team” really consists of the entire church, led by the pastor/elders.
Senior Pastor/Discipling Elder — Mark DeMire, Sr.
Pastor Mark never dreamed of becoming “Pastor Mark.” Completing a degree in medical illustration at what was then Memphis State, Mark was blessed by being surrounded by men who took following Christ seriously. Since committing his life to Christ in 1982, Mark was intent on growing in his faith, sharing the gospel in the course of his job as a UPS driver, and serving in the local church. That seemed enough. But God had another plan. Through a series of providential events, God led Mark to seminary and to becoming full-time pastor at The Community of Grace. Pastor Mark’s heartbeat for Grace can be summarized in one verse: “We proclaim him, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone perfect in Christ” (Col 1:28).
Shepherding Pastor/Elder — Larry Hughes.
Elder Larry also never dreamed of becoming “Elder Larry.” A card-carrying agnostic during and after his college years in Arizona, Larry applied his science background to an effort to show the baselessness of the Christian faith. It backfired. After researching the origin and transmission of the New Testament documents, he became convinced that Jesus Christ was who he said he was, and Larry committed his life to following Christ – also in 1982. Since that time, he has continued to dialogue with acquaintances about the case for Christ and to help others mature in their faith. Professionally, he has transitioned from a career in geophysics to life as a full-time watercolor artist. He also can whip up a pretty decent plate of chile rellenos.
Under these three ministry areas, deacons work in specific tasks. For example, the shepherding/pastoral elder is assisted by an Inreach Deacon (care within the church) and an Outreach Deacon (evangelism and care for our community).