Thoughts from an NBC Alumnus
Here is a little about Pastor Rich Saunders and about his ministry at Three Rivers Church of the Nazarene in Michigan:
The Lord has done incredible work in my life, and I'm not shy about that!
I'm Pastor Rich Saunders, Lead Pastor at Three Rivers Church of the Nazarene (TRNaz). I was the pastor to students and families (Cross Fire Student Ministries) for over 10 years before being called to serve as lead at the start of July 2019. Time has surely, and certainly, flown by and what a crazy, but exciting, transition this has been!
My wife, Tracey, who serves as leader of our Sunday morning Praise & Worship Team, and I have been married since June 18th of 2005 and have 4 kids: two boys, men now, who are grown and married (the oldest and his wife have two beautiful little girls) and another boy, in middle school in Three Rivers, and our daughter, and youngest, who will be joining her brother at the middle school in the Fall of 2019.
This is the first church we attended as a couple, and the first church I have ever attended in my life. We started coming to TRNaz in late 2004 seeking hard to make changes in our life for the better. This church is where I "found Jesus" (He was never hiding from me) and became a believer, accepting Christ as my Savior and repenting of my sins. It's also where I asked to be completely filled with His Spirit (sanctification) and where I was also called into church ministry (Super Bowl Sunday, Feb 1, 2009). To say I've had some experiences at TRNaz would be a humongous understatement!
It is an honor and privilege to be made useful by our Creator and to be allowed to come alongside a church family as they travel on the journey of faith. I am grateful to have been able to impact so many and thankful so many have been able to impact me. We truly are a family at TRNaz and always looking to add more to our number!
I like to think of Sundays as "Reunion Sunday," where we get to see one another, share our successes and struggles, and learn and grow together.
As a Nazarene Bible College Alumnus, here is a little about how Pastor Rich feels about NBC:
I HIGHLY value NBC and it’s process! My education at NBC meant WAY more to me after graduation then I allowed it to mean to me during. I was an obstinate student (called so by one of my professors), and I questioned everything we were told to do. It wasn't until after graduating that I recognized the impact NBC and the program had made in my ministerial life. NBC was exactly what I needed it to be... It was a painful, but incredible time for me - iron sharpening iron!
Pastor Rich recommended NBC to two people from His own congregation responding to God’s call:
My habits of preparation and study were formed in ways I could not see when I was IN class. I have recommended NBC to people within our church family who have felt a call to ministry. There are actually two people currently enrolled and studying at NBC.
One, who has just applied, is an awesome woman of God and is excited to answer this call!! We at Three Rivers Nazarene are here to support her every step of the way. NBC was KEY in my ministry prep which was why I suggested NBC to her!
There is another current student (starting class back up again in a few weeks he said), who I also sent to NBC.
However I can be made useful by our Lord is good for me. Pastor Rich Saunders
Filed Under: Communicator Published: 09/28/2020