A vision is birthed
Antioch Community Church’s history in the Boston area began with a small group of people holding a vision in their heart to see a church planted and built up in the New England area. Sent out from Antioch Ministries International (AMI), this was the first-time AMI had planted a church in the United States. In 1998, this team settled on Boston and specifically the Brighton area. Brighton is near Boston College and the church planting team knew college ministry would be an important part of this church, which they named Community of Faith Christian Fellowship (CFCF).
A church is planted
CFCF was incorporated in Massachusetts by January of 1999. The new church began its first small group Bible study called “Lifegroup” in February; and, in that same March, celebrated their first public worship service at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Brighton. In those early days, there were often as many people in the congregation as there were in the worship band! But the leaders persevered and the church grew. Sunday services eventually moved to Thomas Edison Middle School in Brighton in 2002.
As the church continued to grow, Antioch Discipleship School (ADS) was established in 2001 to train future church planters, while equipping them in the Word of God and helping them to grow in Christ-like character. College Ministry Lifegroups began in Fall 2002 and the Young Adult Ministry was established in Spring 2003 to reach Boston’s singles community.
A movement begins to emerge
In 2007, the first church plant from CFCF was officially sent out to the “North Shore”, specifically, Beverly, Massachusetts. This church plant was born out of a Lifegroup that met regularly and soon after planting, they named the church The Harbor – with the hope that newcomers to the church would find it a place of refuge. Since that time, The Harbor church has grown and flourished on the North Shore.
The movement expands locally
In 2010, a second New England church planting team was sent out to start a church in Waltham, named The River. Soon after, another group of church planters from CFCF were sent to Arizona, planting what is now Antioch Community Church in Phoenix. Both congregations have thrived in their new locations and have been able to effectively reach their specific communities.
In March 2017, both CFCF and The River officially changed their names to Antioch Community Church in order to clarify purpose, strengthen unity and establish a stronger connection to our sending movement of churches, the Antioch International Movement of Churches (AMI). CFCF was the first domestic team to be sent out by AMI, and in the years since, more than twenty different congregations have started around the United States using the Antioch name. Our name changes serve to affirm our belonging in this greater community of churches, while also affirming that the picture of Antioch as seen in Acts 11 and Acts 13 is part of our DNA as a movement of churches.
Today, Antioch Brighton has grown to offer multiple Lifegroups for college students, singles, children and families, and approximately 230 people now attend the celebration service on Sundays. ADS has also continued to grow and now has over 25 enrolled in the training school. Many church members participate in mission trips each year, and a thriving youth ministry has emerged among our churches.
The movement continues to expand globally
Our local church movement of Community of Faith International has sent teams and individuals from our congregation to international locations to serve people groups and fulfill the Great Commission of Jesus (Matthew 28:18-20). These people are serving in locations that include North Africa, Southeast Asia, India and Europe.