Joyful Life Church is a house church founded by and currently led by Pastors Chris and Cathy Gardner in Monticello, Minnesota. Our founding greeters, Harvey and Cocoa (pictured at right with Chris and Cathy), have both gone on to bask in God’s presence. We’ll update that photo one of these days, but they were important to our founding.
Pastor Chris is a dynamic ministry leader with over thirty years of experience managing church programs and resources. He possesses a substantial team and project management background in the secular marketplace combined with a strong record of commitment and achievement in the sacred marketplace. Chris has significant experience in church leadership, youth ministry, Christian education, missions, music, and other church roles. He is a diplomatic and tactful leader who seeks to disciple others, building up reproducing communities of believers. Chris demonstrates passion and talent for identifying challenges, developing creative solutions, and following through to resolution. He is a graduate of The Good Shepherd Christian Schools (Equipped for Life: Bible Training Center), receiving his Pastor’s license in August of 2011. In June of 2013, Chris received his certificate of ordination from Harvest Network International. He has also served as the Senior Pastor of a Christian employee group with over 1500 members at a global Fortune 500 corporation.
Pastor Cathy has over 25 years of experience in Christian ministry, program development, leadership, and service. She has developed Christian Education curriculum and has led Sunday School and Youth Ministry programs. Cathy has experienced a variety of church backgrounds and has served in church administration roles. She is a trained Special Education and Early Childhood Education specialist and has served as Director of an Early Childhood Education center. Cathy is also a graduate of The Good Shepherd Christian Schools (Equipped for Life: Bible Training Center), receiving her Pastor’s license in August of 2011.
Jacob and Lisa Gardner manage the praise and worship ministry. The church looks forward to having a live band someday down the road. Until then, we will continue to leverage music videos with lyrics for this part of our program. Jacob and Lisa both have very strong music backgrounds and Jacob led the technical team (sound equipment, presentations, etc.) for another local church.
Jeff Gardner contributes Joyful Life Church content from the East Coast. Jeff, Pastor Chris’ older brother, offers wisdom and encouragement via “Jeff’s Blog“.