The  New Church Team coordinates the region’s New Church Ministries. The team seeks to build bridges between new congregations and the Northern Lights Region, weaving our new congregations into the ever changing fabric of the region. The team seeks opportunities for the establishment of new Disciples faith communities throughout the region and approves the call of church planters to meet those opportunities. Working with the Regional Minister  the team assists new church planters and their church plant Empowerment Teams by providing guidance, support, and oversight. The team monitors the progress of new congregations to help determine when they have met all the requirements to become fully chartered congregations of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the Northern Lights Region. The team also establishes all Regional New Church policies such as those addressing guidelines for new church proposals, the call of church planters, and the use of new church funds.

The New Church Team

  • Matthew Keith- Kennewick, WA
  • Sharon Nichols- Seattle, WA
  • Roy Smith- Seattle, WA
  • Becky Taylor- Billings, MT
  • Colin McRaney- Kent, WA
  • Risenn Talamoni- Spokane, WA
  • Luke Sumner- Seattle, WA
  • Leslie Smith- Seattle, WA
  • Sandy Messick- Regional Minister

If you are interested in serving on this team, becoming a mentor to a new church pastor, or offering expertise in other areas such as finances, communication, etc., please contact Sandy Messick, Regional Minister.


The Pentecost Offering, received each spring in our congregations, helps support our New Church Ministries. Fifty percent of the offerings received in each region are returned to the region. The other 50% helps support New Church Ministries denomination wide . You can read more about this offering here: Thank you for your generous support.

Congregations in Formation

- MissionGathering -Issaquah, WA
In partnership with Missiongathering, and with funding provided by Bellevue Christian Church, the Northwest Region has planted a congregation in the Issaquah Highlands area east of Seattle. Pastor Devin Wright is reaching out into the community and gathering a dedicated core congregation. Their mission statement reads in part: We exist to be a growing committed community of Christ followers dedicated to growing in faith, living whole lives, and seeking justice for the good of our neighbors.
- Bethesda Ministries -Everett, WA
A developing Hispanic ministry in Everett, WA, this congregation is seeking to be recognized as a church in formation by the Northern Lights Region and the team is happy to be working with their pastors, Javier and Elena Parra toward this goal.
- Samoan Congregational Christian Church -Spokane, WA
Pastored by Rev. Isa’ako Mata’utia, Samoan Congregational Christian Church is nested at Country Homes Christian Church in Spokane, WA. They have a vibrant worship service and active youth ministry.
- Journey Christian Church -Seattle, WA
Begun in 2018, this is a new congregation bringing together the ministry and witness of University Christian and Lake City Christian Churches. Rev. Sacia Vik serves as pastor to this new congregation. Their mission statement reads in part: JCC is a theologically progressive church that uses its rich traditions of Christian faith and seeks to make them relevant in a post-modern world.