Reaching Outdoor Adventurers
In 2013, after a 10-year effort to revive a struggling church in Prescott, Arizona, Pastors Steve and Brenda Lummer earnestly sought the Lord’s direction for what was next.
That same year, Steve Lummer and a leadership team from the church participated in an Acts 2 Journey Cohort, through which they began to find direction, and after much prayer they transitioned the 70-year-old Assemblies of God church into a new effort called Discovery Church.
“The Acts 2 Journey (A2J) took us to a place where a new vision could be birthed,” Lummer says, “and helped Discovery Church create a mission statement that defined us and fit exactly what the church is meant to be doing: Loving God, Connecting People, Discovering Christ. As a result of the A2J process, we began to feel a pull to reach a people group we termed as the ‘Outdoor Nations.’
“Our approach was difficult to define at first, but through the Acts 2 process we began to come up with and write down a tangible dreamscape. We put into words a plan that would impact the lives of people who typically would not attend a church. As we began to see the vision unfold, our leadership began to dream again.”
Prescott is considered a “trailhead town” with a year-round moderate climate conducive to outdoor activities. The community attracts adventurers who don’t necessarily embrace the “big box church” approach to faith, but they do appreciate the backdrop of God’s creation and spend a great deal of time in it.
As Discovery Church gathered to worship and study God’s Word, as well as share in outdoor adventures, the church began to grow.
Discovery Church meets every Sunday at the Crossroads Center on the campus of Prescott College. In addition to their weekly church services on campus, each month they have a missional emphasis using hiking, biking, white water rafting, and other outdoor adventures as a means to reach, teach, and love people with the love of Christ.
These outreach events are designed to put people in contact with their Creator, right in the midst of His creation. At almost every adventure, the church provides camping chairs and a roaring fire, which helps to ignite conversation and a sense of community among those gathered. The church has a saying, “Get outside and let God speak to your inside.”
The church has greatly benefited from the Acts 2 Journey in 2013 and again in 2018 when they participated in the Acts 2 Journey a second time.
"The A2J helped us formulate the initial direction of Discovery Church," Lummer says, "and we felt that repeating the process a second time helped strengthen our team and vision for the future."
Discovery Church is making a difference for the Kingdom as they create relationships with and impact the people of the “Outdoor Nations.” The church is in the process of forming a Discovery Network of Churches with a goal to plant new churches in more trailhead towns around the country. For more information, visit the church website or contact Lummer by email.
More than 1,200 churches, including Discovery Church, have participated in the one-year Acts 2 Journey. Thanks to AGTrust partners, 870 of those have received scholarships to assist them in the one-year journey to better health and new vision.