Mark Driscoll Gears Up to Start New Church In Phoenix, Arizona

Mark Driscoll (Scott Cohen/AP)
Mark Driscoll (Scott Cohen/AP)

Former Mars Hill Church senior pastor Mark Driscoll has filed incorporation papers in Phoenix for a new entity called The Trinity Church in Arizona, 14 months after he resigned his Seattle pulpit and just under a year after Mars Hill ceased to exist.

The new entity will be a “Bible-based Christian church” with Driscoll and two other directors, each giving the address of Mark Driscoll Ministries in Phoenix. Driscoll and his family moved to the “Valley of the Sun” last summer.

“Mark Driscoll appears to have a new project in Phoenix: The recently incorporated church will be a Bible-based Christian church without members,” said Warren Throckmorton, a Pennsylvania college professor who followed the Mars Hill Church meltdown for the Patheos.

It’s been a head-swimming turn of events for Driscoll in the dry Southwest:

— On July 30, 2013, when the Seattle-based megachurch was riding high, Phoenix became site of the 15th regional Mars Hill congregation. “It’s official @MarsHill is coming to Phoenix. Lord willing. Join the congregation or give in support,” Driscoll tweeted.

— On Sept. 28, 2014, two weeks before Driscoll resigned as senior pastor at Mars Hill, the church’s Phoenix congregation announced that it was shutting down and reconstituting itself as the Phoenix Bible Church. “We believe that God has begun something very special through Mars Hill Phoenix: As things come to an end on Sept. 28, we want to explore next steps to continue as a church family and essentially start a new church out of what was Mars Hill Phoenix,” elders wrote.

— On July 27, 2015, Driscoll announced a “new adventure” as he and family were moving to Phoenix, adding: “There are no concrete plans for ongoing local ministry as of yet. This remains a calling and desire, but my plan is not to rush into anything.”

— On Nov. 30, 2015, Driscoll and two associates incorporate The Trinity Church in Arizona. Driscoll has been back on the evangelical preaching circuit and has early new year appearances at the Zion Conference in Texas, the North Valley Community Church in Arizona and the megachurch-hosted Most Excellent Way to Lead conference in South Carolina.

Driscoll is also blogging, lately with an eight-part series on the meaning of Christmas.

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SOURCE: Seattle P-I
Joel Connelly