Disciples of Christ

Disciples History

The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) was founded in the early 1800s in the United States. Seeking to move beyond denominational disagreements, the founders envisioned a united church of Jesus Christ modeled on the New Testament.

Today our nearly 3,800 congregations still share these characteristics:
Each congregation is self-governing and calls its own pastor.
Worship services may be formal or informal.
Worship services may include lay women and men in leadership.
Open discussion of issues is encouraged. Diversity of opinion is common
We are growing in racial and ethnic diversity.


What Disciples Believe

Like most Christians, Disciples Affirm: Jesus Christ is the son of the Living God and all persons are God’s children

Beliefs and practices usually associated with Disciples include:

Open Communion. The Lord’s Supper, or Communion is celebrated in weekly worship. It is open to all who believe in Jesus Christ.
Freedom of belief. Disciples are called together around one essential of faith: belief in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Persons are free to follow their consciences guided by the Bible, the Holy Spirit study and prayer, and are expected to extend that freedom to others.
Baptism by immersion. In baptism the old self-centered life is set aside, and a new life of trust in God begins. Although Disciples practice baptism by immersion, other baptism traditions are honored.
Belief in the oneness of the church. All Christians are called to be one in Christ and to seek opportunities for common witness and service.
The ministry of believers. Both ministers and lay persons lead in worship, service and spiritual growth.