In January of 1991, Wes and Sue Pastor packed their (then) four children into the family station wagon and drove from Philadelphia to Burlington, Vermont. They believed God was calling them to plant a gospel-preaching church in that area.
In September 1992, following months of recruiting, home Bible studies and preview services, Christ Memorial launched under the auspices of the Baptist General Conference (now Converge Worldwide). We met on the Champlain College campus with seven couples, a smattering of singles, and as many children as adults - all told, less than 50 people.
The following year, the church moved to Angell Lecture Hall on the University of Vermont campus (and the fifth Pastor baby was born). In March of 1994, with a congregation of about 125, we began renting a former church in Williston. By the end of 1995, CMC had purchased and renovated that property and had grown to nearly 200 attendees.
Our vision has been the same from the beginning: "To see God display His power by saving sinners through the proclamation of the gospel by all of our members to His eternal glory" (I Cor. 2:1-5). By God's grace, that gospel-driven vision has borne much fruit. Today over 350 people gather each Sunday. God’s Spirit is working in our congregation, with both adults and youth coming to faith and being baptized every year. We’ve witnessed over 200 solid conversions, resulting in lives redeemed and marriages restored. We've also experienced several mini-awakenings, each yielding some 30 professions of faith. We’ve added an executive pastor, a preaching pastor, and a youth pastor to our pastoral staff. We’ve expanded and improved our property and, by God’s grace, paid off the mortgage in 2008.
The vision also included becoming a flagship church that would mentor future church planters. That vision became a reality with the establishment of The NETS Institute for Church Planting in 2000. Already, Christ Memorial has given birth to churches in Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts and Cameroon through NETS. We have church planters on the ground in Connecticut and Rhode Island. And, Lord willing, we will be part of many more church plants for generations to come.
The story of Christ Memorial Church is still being written. We desire to be used of God to promote His kingdom throughout Williston, throughout Vermont, throughout New England, and throughout the world. We pray that the gospel of Jesus Christ will always be the lifeblood of this church and of all that we do.
And we invite you to be part of the story.