Get to know where we have been and where God has taken us.
In the Spring of 2002 a growing inner stirring reached it’s apex with two life changing events for CenterPoint’s founding pastor, Doug Phillips. First, while on a thirty hour train trip from Hong Kong to Beijing, China, God spoke to him clearly that a change was coming regarding ministry. It was a clarion call to return to Columbia, MO, where he was serving as one of seven pastors of an awesome church and…resign! In China he had encountered a people who had so little materially and yet so much spiritually. Though his place of ministry in Columbia was wonderful, God had called him to do a new thing with new people. Second, his heart was breaking as he watched kidney cancer ravage his precious daughter’s body. And yet, the cancer seemed to strengthen her resolve to make the most of every moment, God was calling Doug to do the same.
God’s call, a call that was wholly shared by his wife, was a call “to raise up a people who would take seriously the mission of Christ to reach the lost”. The questions were many…How was he to do this? Where was he to do this? And with whom? And certainly, when was he to do this?
How? God said that he was to focus sharply and singularly on His Son…Pastor Doug was to allow God to fashion him by His Spirit.. And he was to be fully founded in His Word.
Where? God said that Columbia had many people who were disconnected… disconnected from Him, disconnected from the Church, disconnected from people. The harvest field of Columbia was ripe!
With Whom? Doug sensed God’s specific leading to look outside his present church. God was raising up a people who were mostly nameless and faceless to Doug. God was asking Doug to be faithful to His call, and letting Doug know that he would find the people, and they would find him.
When? It seemed that Fall in Columbia, MO—a college town—was a time of beginnings…so on Sunday, August 4th, 2002, CenterPoint Church held it’s first corporate meeting.
Our first days were humble and humbling. I had left the comfort of a wonderful church of 800 to pastor a group of…76. But, it represented the people whom God was raising up to reach the lost. In a strange way, God was bringing the lost and disconnected to reach the lost and disconnected. Those first meetings were held at the Ramada Inn on Vandiver Road. God had given us children’s workers, singers and musicians, greeters and…well, it was awesome…and still is!
Within a few months, we outgrew the Ramada Inn, and joined forces with former members of Crossroads Christian Center to occupy their meeting place in Vandiver Square. Before long, CenterPoint outgrew that location as well, and this blessing from God led us to our current home in the Kelly Plaza building, where we expanded our space twice in a period of two years to enlarge our worship, fellowship and children’s areas.
Our singular desire is still to reach the lost and disconnected of Columbia and beyond. Our mission statement continues to serve as the foundation and direction of all that we do… “to raise up a people who take seriously the mission of Christ to reach the lost by being SAVIOR FOCUSED, SPIRIT FASHIONED, and SCRIPTURALLY FOUNDED.”
It is our founding pastor’s desire to build not merely one church, but a network of churches who will together affect Columbia. CenterPoint is but the first of many—not one church of 2,000, but ten churches of 200. Each will be autonomous, but connected in mission with the others. In all that we are and ever hope to be, in all that we do we must remember that our mission while involving us, is not about us. It is about Him and accomplishing His mission and advancing His kingdom here on earth. “We live because He lives in order that others might live.”
To God be the glory!