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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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New Spokane church going forward without Mars Hill

Each week more than 100 adults pour into a downtown Spokane church, unshaken by the knotty departure of their lead pastor, Mark Driscoll, and the recent news that their church wouldn’t be a Mars Hill Church satellite after all.  The Spokane church had been planning to officially open its doors to the community in January as the 16th Mars Hill church branch. The plan had been to live-stream Driscoll’s sermons on Sunday mornings.

Seattle megachurch Mars Hill dissolves; local branches urged to continue

SEATTLE – Two weeks after lead Mars Hill Church pastor Mark Driscoll resigned amid questions about his leadership, the Seattle megachurch he founded announced Friday it was dissolving its network of branches across four states. The church said on its website that the best future for its branches would be for them to becoming “autonomous self-governed entities.”

Embattled Mars Hill Church founder resigns

SEATTLE (AP) — Seattle megachurch founder Mark Driscoll, who has been under fire amid questions about his leadership style and falling membership in his Mars Hill Church, has stepped down, the church announced on its website Wednesday.

Shawn Vestal: Even amid stormy seas, Mars Hill church plans to open

Seattle’s controversial Mars Hill megachurch has had a tough summer. Its flamboyant pastor has stepped away temporarily in the wake of some boorish comments about women and conflicts within the church. Mars Hill has recently closed and consolidated churches, and new internal battles are being reported almost daily on the West Side.

Mars Hill cuts branches, personnel as giving declines amid controversy

After 18 years of explosive growth, officials at Seattle megachurch Mars Hill say financial pressures in the wake of recent negative media attention are forcing them to cut staff and eliminate some branches, including consolidating three Seattle congregations, leaders announced Sunday. The church, which had blossomed to 15 branches in five states and had followers around the world, also plans to cut 30 percent to 40 percent of its paid staff of about 100. That staff already had seen layoffs last spring and a string of departures in recent weeks by pastors angry or uneasy about the church’s direction.

Protesters target Mars Hill Church’s founder

Dozens of demonstrators picketed outside Mars Hill Church in Bellevue on Sunday, with some former church members calling for the resignation of the megachurch’s charismatic founder, Mark Driscoll. The church Driscoll founded started as a Bible study class in his rented Seattle home in 1996. Today, the church says it has 6,000 members and some 13,000 attendees in 15 locations in five states, including 11 in Washington. The newest is to open this winter in downtown Spokane.

Mars Hill already attracting local members

Mars Hill Spokane won’t officially launch until early next year, but about 60 people from Spokane and North Idaho have already committed to becoming members of the Seattle-based megachurch. They’ll be taking over the First Covenant Church building, at 212 S. Division, and the congregation currently meeting there will move to the Garland District.

Mars Hill Church eyes Spokane campus

Mars Hill Church – the Seattle-based megachurch made famous by its rapid expansion, high-tech outreach and its sometimes-controversial pastor Mark A. Driscoll – has plans to open its 16th satellite campus in downtown Spokane. “We just want people to meet Jesus,” said Miles Rohde, who will be the lead pastor of the Spokane church. “Spokane is getting younger, with lots of college kids coming and raising their families there. We have a message of the Gospel we want to communicate and we have an amazing lead pastor in Mark Driscoll and the message he’s able to convey biblically, and we want to share that in Spokane.”