LNP 47 | Microchurches for the Next Generation

September 19, 2023

Older paradigms of student ministry were focused on centralized expressions that required the next generation to be good inviters. Gen Z believers are hungry for more. They recognize they’re living in a fully post-Christian world and longing for equipping that will empower them to be effective disciplemakers in their schools and within their friend groups. Zero Hour Ministries is discovering and leaning into this in Kansas City. With a vision to see all 88 metro high schools saturated with the gospel, Zero Hour is creatively exploring new ways to support students as they are sent on mission to bring beauty, justice, and the Good News of Jesus to their school. Rob Wegner and Brian Johnson interview Cory to dig deeper into the strategies of Zero Hour to understand how they are disciplemaking among the next generation and empowering student leaders to see microchurches emerge in their context. This podcast accompanies an article written by Cory McElvain that you can find at leadnet.org.

GUEST: Cory McElvain, Pioneering Director of Zero Hour Ministries

HOSTS: Rob Wegner and Brian Johnson, Directors of Microchurch NEXT 

Cory McElvain

Cory McElvain

Cory and Celicia McElvain are Kansas City natives with a passion for training and equipping students to be disciplemakers in their school to reach a hurting and lost generation with the beauty, justice, and good news of the Gospel. Together, Cory and Celicia have one son, Luca, and a daughter on the way. Cory began planting microchurches as a high school student in his senior year after being captivated by the movement of the global Church. He continued making disciples and planting microchurches with REACH starting in 2007 and continued until 2012. After moving to Lawrence, Kansas, in 2012, he began planting collegiate-focused microchurches alongside his CrossFit gym, which operated as a “business as missions” for around two years. After a break from ministry to jump back into the fitness industry, Cory realized he was missing his relationship with students. He began working as the youth pastor at Colonial Presbyterian in 2017 and continued to build those relationships even after his departure in 2019. Through all of these moments, Cory knew God had something more planned for him. After starting a job at a gym in Overland Park in July 2019, he was still feeling a constant tug at his heart to reach students. Cory and Celicia began praying for where they would be called next and in the summer of 2020, the McElvains decided to come underneath the Kansas City Underground to launch Zero Hour Ministries. With the vision to see students mobilized to make disciples and multiple student-led disciple making teams in every school within a 30 mile radius of Kansas City so that every student would be able to see, hear, and respond to the Gospel!
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