New Community Bible Fellowship was founded by Pastor Kevin James and his wife, Tanya in 1994 as a non-denominational Bible teaching church.
In 1985 - almost a decade before New Community Bible Fellowship came into being- Pastor James received a vision and calling into ministry. The vision was to establish a unique church in a major northern city of America that would reach people outside the church and help them fully live a life of joy and purpose as Christians.
In the ensuing years, Pastor James and his wife prepared for the calling of church ministry by receiving ongoing leadership training from their church- Southwest Christian Fellowship of Atlanta, Georgia. In 1990 they relocated to Chicago so that Pastor James could study for his Master of Divinity degree.
While studying in Chicago, God confirmed that New Community Bible Fellowship should be established in Cleveland, Ohio. By September, 1993 the James' had relocated to Cleveland and launched New Community Bible Fellowship.
New Community was started with 15 people who met for Bible Study and prayer at a Community College on the East side of Cleveland. These meetings came to be known as Bible Talks. This group of believers studied the Word of God, strengthened their walk with God and was taught the vision that God had given Pastor James.
Even during this formative time, the James' began conducting small group Bible studies in their home. These home groups would come to be known as Life Groups. To this day, Life Groups continue to play an integral part of New Community's mission and style of ministry.
While still in the developmental years, New Community also began launching intentional strategies for reaching out to men. The commitment to focus on reaching men grew out of Pastor James' passion to build strong homes and communities by reaching and building strong men for Christ. To this day, a focus on impacting men continues to be an important component in the work of New Community Bible Fellowship.
Over the next few months, New Community made the transition from being a Bible Study group to an actual church ministry. Our first Sunday worship service was conducted on April 10, 1994. The church was launched with twenty adult members. Over the next few years the church continued growing spiritually and numerically into a vibrant community of believers, with numerous ministries and two Sunday worship services.
By 1999, New Community had grown to 400 members and was greatly in need of a larger facility to accommodate our services and ministries. It was in this same year, after much fasting and prayer the Lord blessed the church to acquire its first facility. The building- purchased from a Jewish congregation- is located in Cleveland Heights and capable of seating 650 worshippers.
In the years to follow, New Community has grown organizationally by refining its governing style, adding officers, ministry leaders, musicians, artists and staff. In an attempt to meet the needs of both our church family and our community, a wide range of ministries started and flourished, such as worship ministry, women's ministry, men's ministry, children's ministry, teen ministries and leadership training programs. New Community also took on major production goals, such as producing a musical CD, launching city-wide celebration events, and conducting outreach alongside foreign and local mission groups.
Under the grace and blessings of God, New Community Bible Fellowship has continued to flourish. The church is currently a 2300 plus membership ministry, conducting three Sunday morning worship services and providing over 40 ministries and services within the church as well as throughout the city of Cleveland.
New Community is also involved in partnering with and supporting some 40 ministries and missions groups throughout the United States and all around the world.
New Community's growth can be attributed to an unwavering dedication by every member to learn and live the Word of God. New Community is a teaching oriented ministry with special focuses on prayer, fasting, Christian maturity, Christian service, family, marriage relationships and reaching those who are hurting. These factors have blended to produce a warm and energized community of Christians working in unity to impact our city and the world for Christ.
In keeping with Christ's commandment to go to all the earth and tell others about the good news of Jesus, our vision is to continue establishing New Community into a church movement that has a powerful and purposeful impact on the city of Cleveland, Northeast Ohio and all the world.
We believe that there will always be people to reach and work to be done for the cause of Christ. Therefore, our ever-expanding vision will never fully be accomplished. However, in our future, we envision one day looking across our ministry campuses and seeing people of all races, social classes and backgrounds fellowshipping together, growing spiritually together, raising families together, serving God together and most of all doing life together.