Gifted leaders join Utah church planting team
by Jason Quiring
Ten words represent 2016 for The Greenhouse Community Church, a USMB church plant in Saratoga Springs, Utah. Individually, many stories could be written about each, but collectively they tell a much larger story.
Team: After a season of prayer to raise a team of leaders, three Tabor College alumni joined The Greenhouse as bi-vocational staff. All three are gifted leaders and have quickly connected with our church, community and area. They are proclaiming God’s love and grace and are living out the Good News of Jesus.
Table: Real life happens around a table. It’s where we join together and our stories are shared. We share meals together at every Missional Community (MC) gathering. We gather around our tables for parties, special events and so much more. We also have begun to gather around the “table” of communion every month to share the story of God’s love for us.
Gather: Weekly worship gatherings are providing more consistent opportunities to strengthen our core families and to invite others into worship, prayer, teaching and community. The addition to our team made weekly worship gatherings (versus twice a month) a reality. Allie Pankratz’s focus is worship and Logan Whitney helps with the teaching. Over 80 people gathered for our first Christmas Eve gathering, many of which were Latter Day Saint friends and neighbors. Our MCs create spaces where the reality of the gospel collides with the reality of our lives. “Gathering” has taken on many other expressions this year as well.
Scatter: We are a church of both gathering and scattering. We gather but not at the expense of scattering. We often say we’d rather have 30 disciples who know how to scatter really well than to have 300 church-goers who only know how to gather. Scattering into where our community works and plays is especially important in an area where only .8 percent of the population are believers. The kingdom spreads through scattering.
Adventure: When we live on intentional mission every day seems to be an adventure!
Light: “I am the light of the world,” says Jesus. The Greenhouse exists to reflect his light in an area where darkness masquerades as light.
Youth: After its beginning this fall, Greenhouse Youth Group (GYG) and Jr. GYG have both seen significant growth and students in our area are experiencing the gospel in new ways and many for the first time. Drew Pankratz’s primary focus is youth. Within days of getting to Utah he was hired at the local high school, putting him right in the “hot spot” for getting to know the youth in our area.
Serve: From packing Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes to helping with the Rescue Mission’s Easter event, we’ve continued to disciple people towards serving the world, starting at our own front door.
Celebrate: From holidays to life events, we value the opportunities to laugh and enjoy the life that God has given us.
New: 2016 was full of new experiences, connections and most excitedly new relationships in Christ. After three years, The Greenhouse still exists to “grow disciples who love God, love people and serve the world” in a very relational, organic and “missionary” way. We are continually learning new ways to live this out.
The Greenhouse Community Church was planted in 2013 by Jason and Nicole Quiring in the Northern Utah County community of Saratoga Springs, Utah. In this community, 85 to 90 percent of the area identify as Mormon while only .8 percent are Evangelical Christian, making it one of the least-reached areas of the nation. The Quirings see themselves as both “church planters” and “missionaries.” Logan Whitney and Drew and Allie Pankratz joined Greenhouse in 2016.
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