CCC-> ECC FAQ's about the merge
On November 4th 2012, Community Christian Church will be merging with our mother church Eastside Christian Church when they move to the new facility in Anaheim. Currently, 1% of Protestant churches are merging each year in the U.S. and 5% are in dialogues about it. This raises some questions we would like to answer here:
Why is CCC merging with Eastside?
1. To address sustainability. In order to save money to sustain our ministry, our staff, and create an option for our own facility, we made many sacrificial decisions as a church since our country’s economic meltdown in 2008. During this time we have been decreasing our spending as our income continues to decrease. Along with a 20% decrease in attendance a year after we moved to Bryant Ranch Elementary, the question of sustainability was raised among our Overseers. A decision to merge with the church that launched us would preempt a decision being made for us if these trends continued for another year, thus preserving what we have all worked for and enjoy.
2. To fulfill vision. CCC is a church with a vision much larger than itself. With over 150 single parent families being served by our car clinic each year (many are turned away each month) and our own families starting almost 200 churches, 20 schools, and 3 medical clinics in 7 countries, we have dreams both local and global that we cannot fulfill with our own resources. Wrapping ourselves with a church that shares our DNA and vision would mean that we could see our dreams for ministry that we have been unable to resource thus far, fulfilled.
Why didn’t we look at merging with a smaller congregation?
Statistically, the most risky kind of merge is between two small churches. The equation ends up looking like this:
250 Christians +150 Christians=100 Christians a year later.
The kind of merger we will be experiencing is a blend of the top two most successful kinds of merges: a multi-site merge, and an adoption merge. A multi-site merge is when a smaller church becomes a campus for a larger church (which we will become for Eastside for the month of October). Many mergers of this type have taken place in Yorba Linda recently. An adoption merge is when a larger church enfolds a smaller congregation. This is what will happen on November 4th between CCC and Eastside. The strength of the merge only increases for CCC because Eastside is its “natural mother” so to speak with a shared history and DNA.
What will happen to Greg and Michelle? Will we still have access to Greg as a pastor?
Though detailed ministry descriptions have not been put in writing yet, Greg’s pastoral position will focus on assimilating new people into the life of the church, His role will include teaching classes for people new to the church, teaching elective courses for the church at large on Sunday mornings, and helping in International Ministry. One third of his job during the first year will be to pastor those from CCC giving them direct access to him. He will also oversee the small groups from CCC as they continue functioning after the merge.
What will happen to Cliff Sliger, Christa Richard and Robin Thompson as CCC Staff?
Though details are still being finalized, Cliff Sliger is exploring serving in the youth ministry at Eastside focusing on college students and high school musicians in worship ministry. Christa Richard will be focusing on teaching elementary students and Robin Thompson will serve in scheduling volunteers.
What about my small group?
All CCC small groups will continue under Greg’s oversight. Like Greg did at CCC, Eastside provides materials based on the weekend messages though freedom is given to use other curriculum as each small group sees fit. DVD studies are made available as well with new groups starting throughout the year. Small groups are encouraged to attend the same service at Eastside. Beginning November 4th, there will be 3 services: Saturday at 5pm, and Sundays at 9:30am and 11:15am.
How will this affect our International Ministry?
There will be no interruption in financial support of our work in Kenya, and Chile. The Hams, Kallestads, and Crums will all receive the support they have at CCC. Eastside has been looking to increase their support of work overseas to 15% of the church’s income. They have also been looking for opportunities in South America. The merging of the two churches will help in defining new opportunities for that to happen and to possibly accomplish things CCC has wanted to but could not due to limited resources.
What will happen to Mom’s Alone Car Clinic?
The clinic will have a new host home in 2013. There is desire to see expansion of the clinic to reach more single parent families in the area and to strategize ways to demonstrate Christ to the single moms and their children. Gordon Williams, our car-clinic director, will not be burdened with expanding the clinic beyond his ability to do. It is hoped that the merge will create new opportunities for expansion to come via the combined compassion efforts of the two churches.
What will happen to our Building Fund?
CCC’s Building Fund will go toward the construction of the new facility we will all share. Specific targeting of our building fund at specific aspects of the new building will be at the discretion of the leadership of Eastside with consultation from those who have served as Overseers of CCC.
How will the merge affect families with teens and kids?
There will be more worship options to choose from when the merge takes place (Saturday at 5pm, and Sundays at 9:30am and 11:15am). Services for children, Jr. High students, and High School students happen concurrent with adult worship in rooms designed for that age group. College students have a mid week gathering but attend adult worship along side the rest of the congregation. Students are welcome in adult worship as well and may be a good option for those who have enjoyed the Converge format at CCC. Nursery and toddler care is provided during all services as well.
There is desire to put a CCC volunteer in each class and age group so that there will be a good bridge for parents with children and students into their new surroundings. There will also be a greater number of children and students for CCC children and students to connect and grow with once the merge takes place.
What are the benefits of merging with Eastside?
- What CCC has worked to build with God’s help will be resourced well in the future and at potentially higher levels.
- The relationships and community that have grown at CCC can continue to exist.
- There will be a greater number of children and students for CCC children and students to connect and grow with.
- The new facility off La Palma in Anaheim will be significantly closer to the majority of CCCers.
- We will get to be a part of an even grander vision of reaching 1% of the people living within a 20-mile radius of the new facility.
What is the timeline of events leading up to the merge?
September 23rd-Gene Appel speaks at CCC, new facility tour between 1 & 3pm
September 30th-Greg and Jared Dunn from Eastside co-teach
October 7, 14, 21-CCC officially become Eastside’s Yorba Linda Campus, Gene Appel teaching via video at Bryant Ranch.
October 28th-Special Final Service as CCC, Greg teaching and lots of music.
November 4th-Both churches merge and move into the new facility at the same time.
What should I do to prepare myself and my family for the merge?
- Attend the service at CCC on September 23rd to meet Gene Appel, the Senior Pastor at Eastside, sign the new charter, get a tour of the new facility, and find your place of service as you meet the Eastside staff.
- Attend a Saturday evening service at Eastside at 5pm to get a feel for our mother church and the similar culture we have at CCC.
- Explore Eastside.com to discover what their different ministries are, listen to Gene, and to look at a live camera of the new facility construction.
Should you have any questions that we have not addressed, please feel free to email us at