The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) had its beginnings in the early nineteenth century on the American frontier. Presbyterian ministers Barton Stone, Thomas Campbell, and his son, Alexander, troubled by the many divisions among Christians, sought to unify them by means of the principles and practices of the early, apostolic Church, revealed in the New Testament. The Campbell/Stone movement emphasized freedom and diversity. Rejecting creeds as tests for membership, they asked only that persons make a public confession that "Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God" and accept Him as Lord and Savior. This is still the practice of the church today.
Today our nearly 3,800 congregations still share these characteristics:
Although each Disciples congregation has its own personality, all have members who care for each other, opportunities to grow and learn, and ways to serve others. As churches grow in true community, members care deeply for one another. But true community also means reaching out to include others—encouraging the growth of a diverse community in which all are welcomed and cared for.
In Disciples congregations, study and fellowship groups offer opportunities to ask honest questions, share opinions and discover ways to deal with life’s difficult issues and to grow in faith.
Disciples seek to provide a rich fellowship and sense of community for people of all ages and walks of life.