Bob Smart, Lead Pastor
Bob is from a small town along Lake Michigan, Ogden Dunes, where he loved being the youngest of six children - playing sports, campfires on the beach, sailing during sunsets, and hanging with friends. It was while attending Purdue University that life’s clouds grew darker and his longings for God intensified. Bob fell on his knees in repentance, and put his trust for his life in Jesus Christ his last year of college. Soon after God provided a godly and beautiful wife, Karen, who shared a heart for loving Christ, raising a family, and serving in ministry. Sensing a profound call to cultivate Gospel transformation and pray for spiritual awakenings, Bob served on college campuses, then entered a seminary that taught God’s grace and outreach to contemporary culture. Bob and Karen raised five children, who blessed them with eleven grandchildren! Bob’s many years of preaching experience, earning a Ph.D. on Jonathan Edwards, discipling & counseling people, and appropriating the Gospel into life through spiritual formation keeps him active in speaking at conferences, mission trips, and seminaries.
Duane Otto, Pastor of Adult Education and Care
Growing up in Gridley, Illinois, Duane would eventually attend the University of Illinois graduating with a degree in Agricultural Economics. Post graduation, Duane attended Covenant Theologial Seminary in Saint Louis graduating with a Masters in Divinity and in Counseling. There he met his wife, Julie, and was married in 1995. Duane and Julie have served two PCA churches with extensive time spent with L’abri. He now serves as a Pastor at Large while developing the Ithaka Fellowship ministry and the Prayer Ministry at Christ Church. Duane and Julie live on the family farm with their 6 children: Calvin, Sophie, Libby, Amelia, Rose, and Jonathan. You can learn more about Ithaka by going to www.IthakaFellowship.org.
Brad Lucht, Pastor of Youth & Young Adults
Brad is from Cissna Park, Illinois, and attended Illinois State University (ISU) for his undergraduate degree in Elementary Education. ISU is also where he met his wife Jessica. They were married in 2005 at Christ Church before moving to St. Louis in 2007 to attend Covenant Theological Seminary. During that time, Brad completed a Master of Arts in Theological Studies while working at Greentree Community Church in Kirkwood, Missouri, from 2008–2013. In December of 2013 Brad and his family accepted a call to move back home to the Bloomington Normal area to work at Christ Church as the Youth Pastor. Brad and Jessica have 4 children: William, Ruby, Axel and Greta.
Tim Trouten, Executive Pastor
Tim is from Dundee, a small town in Southeast Michigan. He met his wife, Kim, while in high school working together at Taco Bell. They became high school sweethearts and together attended Michigan State University. While he grew up in the church, it was during college that Tim really began to understand how the gospel should impact his faith. During his time in college, the Lord gave him a desire to see other men grow in their understanding of the gospel as well. Tim and Kim were married in 1999 and joined the staff of Cru from 2003–2008. There he learned more about evangelism and discipleship. Upon leaving Cru, Tim attended a seminary that would prepare him for ministry and counseling. It was during that time Tim received a call to ministry and sought to use his gifts in administration and ministry for the Church. Tim loves reading theology, teaching, and playing strategy board games. He began serving Christ Church as Executive Pastor in June of 2014. Tim and Kim have two energetic boys, Xander and Zack.
Krystal Kay Lyon, Admin & Youth Ministry
Krystal is from North Augusta, South Carolina, right across the river from Augusta, Georgia. She is supported and loved by a dear family that all live in the Augusta area. The Lord lead her to full time Youth Ministry in 2001. She served alongside Pastor Otto at Lakemont PCA Church in Augusta from 2001 to 2008. In 2013, Krystal left Lakemont to spend a year at L’Abri in Southborough, Massachusetts where she studied Identity, cooked constantly and fell in love with Flannery O’Connor & Henri Nouwen. Her love of God, beauty, art and community living led her to the Bloomington-Normal area and Ithaka in 2014. Since her move to the B-N area Krystal has started writing for an online film blog out of St. Louis called ZekeFilms. She has had the opportunity to work with FCA and volunteer with the student ministries of Christ Church. Krystal enjoys spending time with the artist community of B-N and trying to create things out of just about anything and talking to her mom. God has been very good to this lady.
Jackie McBurney, Director of Children’s Ministries
Jackie grew up in Normal, Illinois, the fifth child of a family of seven. Her older sister was a profound influence on her to come to Christ at the age of 15. Involvement in high school youth group encouraged further growth as a student and leader at Illinois State University with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship (IVCF). Following graduation, she taught high school geography before moving to Kalamazoo, MI as an IVCF staff. Later she worked with a local ministry and married. After six years in an abusive marriage she returned to Normal. During the 25 years she worked with Hewlett-Packard, she also studied and taught English as a second language, cared for her aging mother, traveled in Europe with her oldest nephew, renewed and deepened her relationship with the Lord, shared with other abused women, and for 13 years taught 5th–6th graders in Foundation hour at Christ Church. Forced retirement opened the opportunity to become a master gardener and work part-time at Christ Church.
Laura Sims, Nursery Coordinator
Chris Evans (Chairman)