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History of Barry & Gina
Both Gina and I were raised in the St. Louis Area. I was born in St. Louis, MO and she was born in Cape Girardeau, MO. Gina’s parents were Assembly of God pastors in Advance, MO at the time, though Gina’s dad later changed to a career in education and moved to St. Louis. My grandparents were Assembly of God pastors in the southern and mid parts of Missouri-church planting most of their ministry. They ended their ministry in Steelville, MO.
Gina and I met when she was 17 and when I was 14. We were both attending a youth conference in South County at the time. She looked great! We were married in 1981. We attended Lindbergh Assembly of God in South County under Pastor Gene Putnum. Later this church would merge with South County Christian Fellowship and, for a period of time, sat under Mike Bickle now with Vineyard Church and International House of Prayer in Kansas City. What a great experience! In 1984, we moved to St. Charles, MO and began attending First Assembly of God in St. Charles. And in October of 1985, we shared the joy of having our first daughter, Meghan. Then in 1989, we had our last child, Kristen.
Beginning of the Dream
The year of 1987 was a monumental turning point for us. Rex Bornman became Pastor at First Assembly of God. It was under Rex’s mentorship that we began to understand how the grace of God was truly a life changing experience. Rex and I spent many hours in one on one discipleship and vision casting about the St. Charles Area. We drove Hwy 94 often, dreaming of a church plant that would impact the Hwy 40 and 94 area. At the time, there wasn’t much in the area but, somehow we believed that would soon change. Wow, did it ever. In 1994 Rex moved out of the area to Altoona, PA, but we continued to stay in contact and talk about church planting dreams.
Process of Development
In 1995, I joined the Pastoral staff of First Assembly of God as the Pastor of Family Life and in late 1998, I accepted the role of Sr. Associate Pastor under Pastor Roger Horne. God had really created a kindred spirit between Roger and I. In 1999, I felt God beginning to change my ministry at First Assembly of God. It was a very strong revelation that I had in my spirit and I knew what it was. That was when I began to share with Gina that I believed God was beginning to release us from our ministry at First Assembly of God. We also confided in close friends, Chris and Lorri Brown and Darrell and Sherri Songer, as they were partnering with us in prayer about this dream. To this very day, they continue to be incredibly valuable as Eldership and as friends.
Birth of SCRC
On July 26, 2000, I received the phone call from the Northern Missouri District of the Assemblies of God to “go ahead and resign from First Assembly of God. You are now the senior pastor of St. Charles River Church.” I will never forget that day. I sat in my office after hanging up the telephone; I was numb. After all that we had been through, our dream had finally come true. I thought of Rex, and I thought of all the great people at First Assembly of God, how wonderful those years had been. It really was a very emotional time for me. All of a sudden, it seemed as though the weight of my former role as Sr. Associate Pastor was lifted, as the weight of this new adventure was rested squarely on my shoulders. Clearly this wasn’t the case, but that’s how I felt. I called Gina and at about the same time we both said, “Well, what are we going to do now?” as we laughed with each other.
Our First Sunday
St. Charles River Church officially met for the first time on October 1, 2000, at the Busch Wildlife Pavilion in Weldon Spring, MO. What a great start! 87 people attended service with us that day as we ate breakfast and worshiped God under the pavilion. For the first month we met wherever we could…in parks…in homes…wherever! On November 5, we moved into our first temporary location, Independence Elementary School in Weldon Spring. 150 people attended that Inaugural Sunday. We were amazed, but God wasn’t!
We continue to partner with the family and friends of St. Charles River Church to put into action the call of Christ in our lives. We serve the needs of people in our neighborhoods, our workplaces, and through the serving opportunities at the SCRC facility. We have over 30 different ministries supporting the activities at the facilities, and as many ministries as there are people at SCRC who are investing in the lives of those around them. We encourage every individual to participate in the Christ life vision of reaching out to encourage, equip and partner with our friends, co-workers, family and those that we have never met continents away in the ways that build upon the gifts and strengths that God created you with.
We are glad that you are checking us out because you are one of those gifted people we can’t wait to see God raise up into a Christ-like servant in this great Kingdom!
So hold on, get ready for a memorable ride!
And now, we want to extend an invitation to you and your family to join us on this incredible journey. History is still being written, and we are anticipating a great future role for you in God’s great Kingdom!
In His Service,