On October 4th, 2009, thirty or so people gathered for New Denver Church’s first official worship service. It was not our first event. The idea of “a new church in Denver” was born in April 2008. That was when three families came together to dream about starting a new community of faith in a city we’ve grown to love.
Our goal was simple: to be a church where people could grow in their faith wherever they are on their spiritual journey. So we cast vision, raised money, and in 2009, began gathering people and forming the community. It wasn’t easy that first year. But we persevered and God was faithful to us.
In 2010, we began meeting in the Bonnie Brae area. We also developed a long-term relationship with a partner church in San Pablo, Guatemala. Since then, we have sent about twenty teams of people to Guatemala and helped start a local school where we currently sponsor about a hundred children to receive a good education.
In 2013, NDC added a second worship service. We also entered a long-term lease to take over primary responsibility of the facilities at 700 Bonnie Brae Blvd. In 2016, we began partnering with Joshua Station, a faith-based community helping families make the transition from homelessness to a healthy, stable living environment. And in 2018, we helped plant a multi-ethnic church in West Denver, Westside Church Internacional.
For over a decade now, people have gathered on Sundays to be part of the NDC community. They’ve also come together for weekly D-Groups, yearly retreats, and countless other events. Our community includes skeptics and seekers (genuine questions and doubts welcome!), kids and students who want to learn more about God’s love, young adults who wrestle with faith in an age of distractions, and all kinds of followers of Jesus, young and old, looking for a family of fellow sojourners.
To lead people into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ.
This is really the main thing for us: to help you grow in your relationship with Jesus. Perhaps you’ve been a follower of Jesus for many years but have not found a church home yet. Or maybe you’re someone who is curious about God or spirituality but you’ve always been skeptical of organized religion. Or maybe it’s Jesus or the Bible that doesn’t make sense. We get that. Wherever you are on your journey of faith, you’re always welcomed at New Denver Church.
New lives, New Denver, New world.
The word “new” is an important part of our name. We believe that God is in the process of making all things new (Rev. 21:5) in our world and we want to join him in that vision.
It starts with us. That’s the “new lives” part: our vision is to continually seek transformation in our own lives. We also have a heart for the city of Denver. We want to see God’s grace, justice, and renewal thrive in our beloved city. But even bigger than that, we want join in God’s vision for the whole world. We want to be a small part of God’s bigger story.
New Denver Church is a nondenominational community made up of people from many different backgrounds. We are affiliated with two important networks of other churches. In Denver, we participate in the Church Cooperative of Denver and collaborate with other local churches from time to time. We are also part of the Ecclesia Network, a relational network of churches that seeks to partner with, equip, and multiply missional churches across the country.
Beliefs & Values
NDC is a nondenominational community of faith that exists in the long tradition of Christian churches that have looked to the Bible as their authority for almost 2000 years. As a result, we affirm the central tenets of historic Christianity as expressed in one of the earliest and most universally accepted statements of faith:
The Apostles’ Creed (circa AD 140):
We believe in God, the Father Almighty,
Creator of heaven and earth.
We believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and he will come to judge the living and the dead.
We believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic* Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting.
(* Note: “catholic” here refers to the worldwide or universal church)
The Apostles’ Creed provides a helpful summary of our core beliefs. However, we also think that what we do, how we live, and the kind of community we become illustrate our beliefs better than any list of statements on a website. So, we invite you to simply join our community and discover who we are from the inside: a group of people seeking to follow Jesus, love God, and love others.
Our five core values best summarize how we believe God transforms us as individuals and as a community of faith:
The Bible is not just a book of do’s and don’ts. It is a grand narrative of God’s creative and redemptive work in history. And it summons us to find ourselves in God’s story and live out the purposes for which he made us.
Are we orienting our lives around the purposes of God as revealed in Scripture?
God’s mission for renewing and restoring our world takes place when we share his love with others. Specifically, we are called to share the love of Jesus in word and deed with those in our spheres of influence, with the poor and marginalized in our city, and with those around the world who have never heard the good news of Jesus Christ.
Are we reaching out in mission to love the lost, the least, and the last?
We were made to experience community with others. Only through intentional relationships characterized by encouragement, authenticity, and sacrifice will we fully experience transformation in our lives.
Are we cultivating authentic community with others?
The practices, rhythms, and habits of our lives shape what we love, worship, and value. In each season of our lives, God uses intentional practices to form us into the kinds of people who follow Jesus and live out his kingdom purposes.
Are we pursuing practices that form us into a community of Jesus-followers?
God is at work in every place, relationship, and circumstance we find ourselves in. But busyness and distractions often fill our lives. We partner best with God when we are fully present to the people and opportunities around us and the voice of the Spirit leading us.
Are we present to the Spirit’s work in our lives?
Norton Herbst oversees the general vision, teaching, and Sunday gatherings at New Denver Church. He graduated from Virginia Tech (B.S. Engineering), Denver Seminary (M.Div.), and the University of Denver (Ph.D. in Religious Studies). In addition to being a pastor, he teaches American history at the University of Denver and church history and preaching at Denver Seminary. Norton is married to Janis and they have three teenage children: Townsend, Ellory, and Marin. They also have four chickens and one cat. In their free time, Norton and Janis enjoy spending time outdoors, reading good books, and drinking great coffee.
Families, Women, & Discipleship Pastor
Emily Schulz oversees Family Ministries, Women’s Ministry, & Discipleship Groups at New Denver. She’s married to Phil, a high school teacher and self-proclaimed pretty good parallel parker, and they have three sweet kids, Eva (born Nov 2018), Baylie (born April 2020), and Theodore (born May 2022). Emily has her M.Div. from Denver Seminary and her B.A. in Christian Ministries from Biola University. Her favorite activities are currently the same as Teddy’s…All she wants is for someone to feed her and let her take a nap.
Stephen Redden is one of the founding pastors of NDC and oversees our church multiplication efforts. He is also the director of The Church Cooperative of Denver, the local church network NDC helped launch in 2017. He is a graduate of Mississippi State University (B.S. Computer Engineering, M.B.A.) and Dallas Theological Seminary (M.A. Biblical Studies). Stephen also does a variety of projects outside of NDC. He is the founder of Third Circle, a consultative coaching practice, where he works with individuals and organizations to maximize their effectiveness. Stephen is married to Kate and they have two teenage sons, Ethan and Andrew. Stephen loves football (Go Broncos and Hail State!) and futbol (Go Rapids and Gunners!), snowboarding, and considers himself a geek at heart.
Worship Arts Director
Brian is the Worship Arts Director at New Denver Church. His experience in ministry has led him to several different churches in the Denver metro area, each of varying denominations, sizes, and styles. He has a passion for inspiring creatives within the local church to embrace a more holistic worship practice, beyond singing songs and listening to sermons. In addition to his role at NDC, he is the Worship Events Coach & Consultant with Torn Curtain Arts, a non-profit company that seeks to create content and events for the spiritually homeless. Brian is also a songwriter and has produced two albums with his band, quite originally called the Brian Davis Band. He is a husband to Jess, a father to Madeleine, Lily, and Seraphim, is in a mildly codependent relationship with his boxer, Colt, and fancies himself a non-pretentious foodie and amateur chef.
Admin and Operations Director
Scott Harrison is the Administration and Operations Director of New Denver Church. He graduated from Dallas Baptist University (B.A. Religion) and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (M.Div.); and earned a Ph.D. in Humanities from The University of Texas at Arlington. Scott retired from full-time pastoring in 2008 and served in the nonprofit world for ten years overseeing ministries that moved people out of poverty. His wife, Deanna, is the Executive Director of Pastors’ Hope Network. They have two children and three grandchildren.
Kids’ Ministry Director
Sara Griffin is a Registered Dietitian from Milwaukee, WI. In addition to overseeing NDC Kids environments, she teaches community college nutrition courses. She loves children and worked as a nanny for 12 years. She and her husband John have one son, Will (born 2021) and two dogs. Sara enjoys eating tacos, baking sourdough bread, and loves a good hike.
Student Ministry Director
Blake Brunner is the Student Ministry Director at New Denver Church as well as a student at Denver Seminary. He graduated from Manhattan Christian College in 2019 with degrees in Bible and Christian Ministry and has been doing youth ministry for five years. Blake enjoys snowboarding, rock climbing, movies (specifically Lord of the Rings), and hanging out with anyone who will give him the time!
Matt Shinn is the Community Life and Men’s Ministry LDP. Matt married Ellie in June 2019, and they love married life! He is born and raised in Denver (his family owns the famous NATIVE Colorado license), and he worked for Little Man Ice Cream for 6 years. Matt graduated from Grand Canyon University in 2018 with a B.A. in Christian Studies. In his free time, he usually is watching sports or playing board games with Ellie!
Drew Howard is part of the Leadership Development Program and currently helps oversee worship service production. Drew and his wife Jacqui both grew up in Colorado and love living in Denver with their dog, Gary. Drew finished his B.A. in Psychology in 2018 and is currently working on a Master of Divinity in Chaplaincy from Denver Seminary. He also works at Bean Fosters (a craft coffee shop) and loves a good cup of coffee at any time of day. Drew’s interests involve vinyl records, tuning his car, building computers, and just about anything else he can tinker with.
Church Planting Resident
Chuck and Katie Fowler are partnering with NDC to plant Nova Church in the Capitol Hill neighborhood in early 2021. Chuck is a Colorado native and has lived most of his life on the Front Range. He graduated from Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, OK, and earned his M.Div. with Fuller Theological Seminary. Before seminary, Chuck worked in media production. Chuck enjoys reading, cooking, fitness, and many varieties of games. A writer with an interest in sci-fi and fantasy, he’s a fanboy of C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and their literary friends, the Inklings.
Church Planting Resident
Katie and Chuck Fowler are partnering with NDC to plant Nova Church in the Capitol Hill neighborhood in early 2021. Katie was born in Atlanta, GA, and grew up in Jacksonville, FL. A graduate of the University of Florida, she earned a M.Div. at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, CA. Katie and her husband Chuck have two young boys, Luke and Sam. A big Florida Gators fan, Katie often dresses her boys in orange and blue (Chuck included). Her favorite movies are Pride and Prejudice and The Young Victoria. She grew up playing softball and has a love for baseball that she looks forward to passing on to their boys. (Who’s up for a Rockies game?)
Key Congregational Leaders