OUR STORY

The Gathering first started in January 2006 at St. Jerome School in Riverside South (a growing, vibrant neighbourhood just south of the airport in Ottawa). As a church plant of the Ontario Conference of Mennonite Brethren Churches, we grew quickly and many people joined our faith community.

Today, as the only church in the Riverside South area, we feel we are in a great position to reach our neigbourhood with the good news of Jesus. We are very active in our neigbourhood, working to be a blessing to our community and beyond.

On Sundays, we now meet at St. Francis Xavier High School (3740 Spratt Road) in Riverside South at 10:30AM.

Whether you’ve never been to church before or you’ve attended church your whole life, you will be encouraged to “Question…Think…Grow.“ We are committed to helping people in their spiritual journey to take their next step towards relationship with Christ, with one another, and with our world.

WHO WE ARE TODAY

In Matthew 28:18-20, Jesus made it clear why the church exists: The church exists to “go and make disciples…” or what we sometimes call “apprentices of Jesus.”  That is our mandate. That is why we exist. That is Jesus’ call to his church. Therefore, at The Gathering, everything we do as a church must be about discipleship and making more apprentices of Jesus. We believe that this starts in our own neigbourhood (Riverside South), and beyond.

Below is an explanation of our identity, breaking down who we feel God is calling us to be and the unique expression we sense Him calling us to make.

OUR MISSION: Why We Do What We Do…

We exist to connect people to the love of Jesus… so that they would follow Jesus! (2 Cor 5:20-21, Matthew 28:18-20)

OUR VISION: What We Invite People Into…

To Follow Jesus By…
  • Being With Jesus (John 15:4)
  • Becoming Like Jesus (Romans 12:1-2)
  • Doing What Jesus Said (John 14:15)

These three components of discipleship shape everything we do and talk about as a church. Our Sunday services, our Home Churches, our kids ministry, our outreaches, our partnerships, church planting… everything!

MARKS OF DISCIPLESHIP: Evidence of Growth

Things We Teach & Focus On


Four marks of a Disciple who is committed to “Being With Jesus”:
  • A growing love and passion for God (Matthew 22:37)
  • A growing ability to hear God’s voice through prayer & Scripture (John 10:27)
  • A deepening awareness of one’s identity in Christ (Eph 1:3-8, 2:8-10)
  • A deepening awareness of the power of the Gospel (Romans 1:16-17)
Five marks of a Disciple who is committed to “Becoming Like Jesus”:
  • A growing love and concern for neighbour (Matthew 22:39)
  • A growing commitment to being led and shaped by the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:16-23)
  • A growing commitment to being transparent, honest and authentic in community and spiritual friendship (James 5:16, Galatians 6:2)
  • An increased experience of freedom & wholeness in Christ (Galatians 2:20)
  • A growing ability to persevere through pain & suffering (James 1:2-4)
Four marks of a Disciple who is committed to “Doing What Jesus Said”:
  • A deepening commitment to obeying Jesus’ teaching and surrendering to his will (John 14:23)
  • Actively serves others and uses their spiritual gifts for the benefit of the church (John 13:1-17, 1 Cor 12)
  • A growing love for people far from God; Actively pursues opportunities to share the Gospel and to make more disciples (1 Peter 3:15)
  • A growing love for ‘the least of these’; Actively cares for the poor, needy, and the oppressed (Matthew 25:31-46)

Note: All three components of discipleship are dependent on the other. A disciple must commit to expressing all three components increasingly at the same time in order to grow. One, without the other two, is not discipleship and can have negative spiritual impact. 

For example, just “Being with Jesus” without also “Becoming Like Jesus” and “Doing What Jesus Said” leads to MYSTICISM & ELITISM. Just “Becoming like Christ” without “Being with Jesus” and “Doing What Jesus Said” leads to FATALISM & DEFEATISM. And just “Doing What Jesus Said” without “Being with Jesus” and “Becoming Like Jesus” leads to LEGALISM & MORALISM.

OUR CORE VALUES

What’s Important to Us

We Value The Bible

We want everything we teach and do to be shaped by the Bible. We believe that all Scripture points to Jesus (John 5:39) and that it’s impossible to truly know Jesus without knowing the Bible. It is the inspired word of God and it helps us to become more and more like Christ (2 Tim 3:16).

We want to be a people of ‘the book’!

We Value 24/7 Worship

We want the songs that we sing on Sundays to passionately and honestly reflect our love for Christ. At the same time, we know that worship is so much more than the songs that we sing one day a week. In fact, worship is a lifestyle and can be experienced in everything that we think, say, and do every single day of the week (Rom 12:1-2).

We want to be a people who worship Christ in everything! 

We Value Prayer

We believe that there are things that God wants to do in our world that he cannot do unless his people pray. Prayer changes things (Matt 7:7)! Church strategy, leadership and plans are all important but ultimately it is prayer that makes room for the Holy Spirit to work.

We want to be a praying church!

We Value People

 Because we believe that people are God’s most prized possession and that he loves everybody no matter what (1 Peter 2:9-10), we are committed to being as welcoming and as loving a church community as we could possibly be. Everybody needs a church family. So whatever your story – there’s a place for you around our table.

We want to be a loving church!

We Value Mission

We don’t attend church, we are the church! And as the church, we are called to live as sent people in our everyday lives; sharing the love of Christ with our friends, neighbours, coworkers, and the poor and marginalized. The mission of God is to drive everything that we do in life (Matt 28:18-20, Gal 5:6). The church does not exist for itself, but for our hurting world.

We want to be a people who live on mission!

We Value Engagement

While some may treat church as a product to be consumed, we strive to be a church that encourages everyone to contribute. We believe that the Church is not being the Church unless everyone is playing their part (1 Cor 12:12-26). It takes everyone’s time, talents and treasures to accomplish everything that God has called us to accomplish.

We want to be a church of contributors!

We Value Authenticity

In a world where people often hide behind their masks and pretend to be something they are not, we want to be a people who are taking our masks off and becoming more and more honest with God and with one another. We believe that ‘authenticity’ is a great indicator of spiritual growth and maturity (James 5:16), and so we long to be real and honest in everything that we do and say (both from the stage on Sundays as well as in our everyday lives!).

We want to be an honest church!

We Value Simplicity

We want to be a simple church; A church that focuses on relationships instead of programs. At the same time, we want everything we do to be done with excellence. This requires a laser focus and a commitment to doing only a few things, but doing them well. As a people, this also requires that we avoid the pull to over-schedule our lives, allowing God the space he needs to grow our relationships.

We want to be a focused church!