"We will be a place of connection, not because everyone is the same (we all have different struggles!) but because we are ready for transformation."
- We will foster real relationships by having real conversations with one another through our worship services, parish groups, and parties.
- We will walk the way of Jesus in more than just words, but with deeds. We will go beyond our walls & out into the world with courage, compassion & action!
- We want to make something old, new again. We are renovating the old 8th Street Church as a physical sign of the restoration we want to see in our parish and our city.
- We will help our city & each other by not just taking up space, but making space for true connection & service to each other.
Rev. Christian Allen (wife Amy), Associate Pastor of Worship & Technology - Christian was born and raised in Bethany, OK and attended Bethany First Church of the Nazarene, where he served as Worship Arts Intern for 5 years. He felt the calling to ministry at a young age, and received his first Ministers' license in high school. He has a passion for leading and teaching others how to worship with authenticity, in Spirit and in Truth. Christian graduated from Southern Nazarene University in 2013 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Music Business with an emphasis in ministry.
Amy, born and raised in Moore, OK, has a passion and calling towards children and the marginalized. She has a degree in Early Childhood development and teaches preschool at the OCCC Child Development Center Lab School. Christian and Amy were married in 2014 and currently live in Moore.
Banning Dawson (Wife Katie; Dog Sullivan), Associate Pastor of Worship - Banning was born and raised in Oklahoma City, OK. He attended Southern Nazarene Universty, majoring in Music Business and participating in SNU’S traveling worship team for 3 years. While at SNU, Banning responded to a changing call on his life to pastoral ministry. After graduation, Banning was the program director for a local non-profit (then called CCIO, now called ONE). After a year and half of serving at CCIO, Banning responded to the call of being a University Pastor at SNU and has now been there for 3 years. In addition to pastoral ministry, Banning loves coffee, music, running, snow-skiing, and cinnamon rolls.
Katie grew up in Southwest Oklahoma City and has lived here her entire life. Katie went to The University of Oklahoma where she majored in Human Relations and minored in Interior Design. She currently works at Junction Coffee, a local double-decker coffee bus. Katie loves coffee, creating (anything), baking, and snow-skiing.
Hope Keimig- (Husband, Dan, Grace, 3, and Julia, 10 months)- Director of Children’s Ministries- Hope was born and raised in Edmond, Oklahoma. She attended Seattle Pacific University where she began to feel called into ministry. She found a passion for studying theology and loved learning how to apply it practically within a ministry setting. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Christian Theology. She moved back to Oklahoma in 2014 with her family. Since then, she has been working at a local Children’s Day Out with preschool aged children and raising her two daughters. In her spare time, she loves to cook her way through any cookbook she can get her hands on and cheer on the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Dan was born in Denver, Colorado. He attended Seattle Pacific University where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. He is currently pursuing his Masters in Counseling from Southern Nazarene University. He loves snowboarding, all things Colorado, and eating all the food Hope cooks.
Rev. Michaele LaVigne (husband Brent; Austin 3, Galilee, 1), Pastor of Spiritual Formation- Born and raised in Ohio, Michaele was 12 when her father planted a church outside his hometown of Youngstown. From that early age she developed a passion and appreciation for church planting, and during college she and Brent helped begin West Side Church of the Nazarene in Mount Vernon, Ohio. After graduation, she served there as an associate pastor for four years. In 2009 Brent and Michaele embarked on a year of volunteer missionary service in Swaziland, serving as liaisons between American and Swazi leaders in a number of organizations and compassionate ministry projects. For the last five years Michaele has served on staff at Bethany First Church of the Nazarene as discipleship pastor. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Educational Ministries, a Master’s of Divinity from Ashland Theological Seminary, and is an ordained elder in the Church of the Nazarene. In addition to God and her family, Michaele loves all things related to coffee, yoga, and Harry Potter.
Brent also grew up in a pastor's home, raised in Pennsylvania and then Maryland. He currently serves as the Chair of the Business Department at Southern Nazarene University and is a Ph. D candidate at Oklahoma State University. Austin and Galilee bring laughter, mess and joy in their lives.
Rev. Andrea Mosshart (husband Evan; Max, 2), Associate Pastor of Missions - Andrea served for two years as a volunteer for Americorp Vista, which sends university students to help with poverty alleviation throughout Oklahoma City. Andrea and her husband Evan lived in Swaziland, Africa for a year as volunteer missionaries through the Church of the Nazarene. After returning from Swaziland, Andrea served as the Community Pastor at Bethany First Church of the Nazarene overseeing their After-School Program for 250 students. Currently, she is also serving at Love Links Inc. as the thrift store manager, and raising her son Max. Andrea is currently working towards a Master’s of Divinity degree at Nazarene Theological Seminary.
Evan was born and raised in Oklahoma, home-schooled up until college, and went to Southern Nazarene University where he got a degree in Network Engineering. He currently works as a Network Administrator for a security company in Mustang. Evan enjoys music, sports, movies, and the outdoors; especially fishing.
Rev. Chris Pollock (wife Holly; Watson, 15 and Annabelle, 11), Lead Pastor -Chris and Holly have had a passion and a deep love for the people who live in the areas with which they serve. Born in Illinois and raised in a small church in Mason City, Iowa, Chris witnessed the evangelical efforts of his parents as they ministered, intentionally among the unchurched, within their community. As a college student, he answered the call to pastoral ministry and has given the last fifteen years to ministry in the local church. He has a passion for the city and its many ethnic peoples. He comes with a solid ministry background, education, maturity, and entrepreneurial gifting from the Lord. Chris has served at Central Church of the Nazarene and Bethany First Church of the Nazarene. He has a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, a Master’s of Divinity, a Doctorate of Ministry, and is an ordained elder in the Church of the Nazarene.In addition to church planting, Chris is into cycling, swimming, and remodeling his old house.
Holly grew up just off the campus of Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, IL where her father was an Athletic Director and a coach and her mother was a school teacher. She, a teacher as well, has committed herself to live missionally by considering the holistic development of children in the public school system. She has worked in a variety of schools ranging from poor-inner-city schools to well-to-do suburban schools. Holly has Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education and a Master’s Degree in English Language Learning (formerly, English as a Second Language). Holly loves coffee, getting pedicures, and her family (not in that order).
The Midtown Church in OKC is a Church of the Nazarene. The Church of the Nazarene is a Protestant Christian church in the Wesleyan-Holiness tradition. Organized in 1908, the denomination is now home to about 2.3 million members worshiping in more than 29,000 local congregations in 159 world areas.
In its earliest days, our denomination started churches in the urban core and was focused on three things:
- A commitment to cities and the poor,
- Active involvement in social issues,
- A doctrine of HOPE.
Our desire is to return back to these essential issues by being a faithful presence in Midtown/Downtown. We want to be good neighbors, meet the needs of those around us, and provide a place of transformation by being a people of safety, inclusion, transformation, and healing.
We hold fast to the ancient creed of the Apostles:
We believe in God, the Father Almighty, Creator of Heaven and earth;
and in Jesus Christ, His only Son Our Lord,
Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried.
He descended into Hell; the third day He rose again from the dead;
He ascended into Heaven, and sits at the right hand of God, the Father almighty; from there He shall come to judge the living and the dead.
We believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body and life everlasting.
For information on our Articles of Faith, CLICK HERE.
In July of 2013, Chris took a sabbatical from his work as a pastor and spent seven weeks in an RV with his family. In addition to fishing and riding his bike with his kids, he read the words from Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount every day. Jesus’ words were both unsettling and inspiring, and upon returning to Oklahoma City, he knew God was calling him to something new.
For months he and Holly prayed about what God was leading them to, and slowly they felt drawn to the Midtown area. Confirmation of God’s leading came in many ways, especially in one mentor who, upon hearing Chris’s dream, pounded his fist on his desk and shouted, “I’ve been asking God to send a pastor to Midtown!”
In February of 2014, Chris shared his dream to start a new church with the staff of Bethany First Church of the Nazarene, where he had been serving as age group pastor for ten years. Michaele served there as discipleship pastor, and was in the room when Chris shared his dream that day. She remembers feeling a great sense of excitement and an urgency to pray for Chris and Holly as they embarked on this adventure.
For the next six months, the urgency and excitement grew. Michaele and Brent prayed with and for the Pollocks, but every time Michaele went to yoga, visited friends, or went to coffee in Midtown, she felt a stronger connection to the vision of a Nazarene Church here. In September of that year, she and Brent finally agreed that God was also calling them to help lead this new church.
In February 2015, after many conversations, and much time in prayer, a team of people from Bethany First Church signed on to help make this new church a reality. The group had monthly prayer meetings for a while, and then began meeting weekly at the end of May.
Pastor Doug Serven of City Pres was introduced to Michaele and Chris through a mutual friend, and he quickly became a great friend and encourager through this process. A church planter himself, Doug and his congregation spent time in other church buildings before they were able to purchase their own. He and City Pres have offered to host our new church in their building as long as we need. We are grateful for the partnership and hospitality we have found in City Pres.
On September 27, 2015, Bethany First Church sent and commissioned 90 adults and children to go and begin the new church in Midtown. On November 29, 2015, we will celebrate our first official Sunday as a new congregation. We are excited to welcome in new neighbors who will become friends, and find connection and belonging among those who used to be strangers.