orange asian man

scattering ideas for the good of humanity

The City Innovated Church Tech Had a 10 Year Life Span — October 5, 2019

The City Innovated Church Tech Had a 10 Year Life Span

There once was a popular church in Seattle with lots of people and they built a digital platform called The City to engage churchgoers. That was 2006. And it was a beautiful vision—

The City is driven by a compelling vision emanating from Matthew 5:14.

Having recently left his job at Amazon.com to become a pastor in his church, Zack Hubert was wrestling with ways of harnessing technology to facilitate the growth of a rapidly self-organizing and expanding church. He was inspired to create the original concept for The City after this passage in the Bible that says, “a city on a hill cannot be hidden.”

Since inception, we at The City have been driven to make it easier for churches to connect newcomers, build deeper community, equip leaders and unleash people to serve and make a lasting impact on their world with the Gospel.

The City has grown and is now being used by churches and organizations all over the world. As The City continues to grow, so does the vision, and we feel blessed to be along for the ride.

https://web.archive.org/web/20091123121845/http://www.onthecity.org/about/

The City Grew Larger and Larger

In November 2008, The City was bought up by Zondervan and grew its user base. A blog post briefly described the sale—

Zondervan, a world leader in Christian communications, has acquired The City, a propriety online community-building software program created by Seattle-based Mars Hill Church. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Developed over the past two years by Mars Hill pastor of technology, Zack Hubert, who spent eight years in management at Amazon.com, The City was created in response to the church’s need to improve communication, better engage with members, support small groups, build a stronger church community and free up administrative resources. Mars Hill launched The City earlier this year to create a dynamic, engaging interactive online community for its more than 7,000 members. Within two months of launch more than 85% of the church’s members had signed up and more than 75% visit the site every single day.

The City digital platform went from serving one church to hundreds of churches using the subscription cloud+based service. An article described its growth from 7,000 to 165,000 people using The City.

The City by Zondervan Enables Churches to Achieve their Mission through Robust Web Platform (Christian Newswire, October 2010)

Thousands of pastors today are seeking new engagement and organizational tools to further grow their ministries and build discipleship within their membership. Zondervan is helping churches of all sizes realize these goals by creating safe, open and fulfilling online environments through The City.


The City by Zondervan is an innovative web-based platform that is revolutionizing how churches communicate, organize ministries, build connections with members, and simplify organization, outreach and worship. The City’s comprehensive approach brings together everything from email, Facebook and Twitter to finance and administration all in one place.
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The City is currently used by more than 165,000 people and is effectively enabling church attendees to reach out to each other. During the month of September, more than 3.2 million emails were sent among members of The City, all without the risk of spam, phishing scams or email viruses.
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The City brings church to members beyond Sunday service by creating an online environment for church leadership and its congregation. It offers tools that help drive small-group management, empowering a church to achieve more effective discipleship among church attendees. It also helps leaders organize their ministries to enhance our communities and local culture.
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The City is now used in 12 countries around the world and has proven to be a valuable platform for both small and large churches. …

About The City

The City is a division of Zondervan and is located in Seattle. This innovative web-based platform is focused on empowering churches to realize their mission. The City enables churches to connect newcomers and regular congregants to meaningful community and discipleship, and uses social networking technology to help keep everyone in touch throughout the week, serving each other’s needs and sharing life together. The City also gives leaders powerful new ways to communicate to congregants and brings fresh insight to church administration, children’s ministry, and operational management.

3 Years Later, The City Gets a New Owner

In May 2011, Zondervan sold The City to ACS Technologies

Last Wednesday, ACS Technologies announced its acquisition of The City from Zondervan. This acquisition will allow ACS Technologies to combine The City’s innovative community and communication engagement tools with its vast portfolio of church office solutions.
The City is one of the most widely used church-focused social community with over 600 churches and over 200,000 people engaged nationwide. It was birthed by one of the country’s leading megachurches with an innovative spirit to serve the local church and to encourage community transformation from within a local church. The City allows churchgoers to engage with one another on their own terms, whether they’re scheduling events, sharing prayer requests or information, connecting for outreach, using a community calendar, giving, or keeping contact information accurate. The City has led the way in social community and communications innovation since 2008.

The City ran for years, a long run with ACS, from 2011 to 2018… it’s home page had several designs, like—

When The City’s Technology Was Obsolete and Replaced

By February 2019, with ACS’ help, everyone had moved out of The City into something called Realm. This FAQ explained the why—

Words of Farewell: “Thank you for your long-time commitment to authentic church community and The City. It has been an honor to support your ministry with these communication and relationship tools. We have been helping churches using The City move to Realm®, our next-generation solution that not only includes tools for engagement like The City had, but also offers full administration functionality and much more. …”

Asian pastor leading Whites? — May 18, 2019

Asian pastor leading Whites?

In years past, Korean pastors like myself were told that few white people would sit under a non-white pastor. This has largely proven true with only a few exceptions here and there. But a new generation is rising…one that not only is more tolerant of other (non-white) perspectives, but is actually seeking them out so as to enrich their own. What this means for us is that whereas in the past a truly multicultural church was mostly wishful thinking, the possibility of such a thing is much more likely now.

via https://www.facebook.com/Andante/posts/10154349529776763
Free Resources for Chinese churches, pastors and church leaders — February 2, 2019

Free Resources for Chinese churches, pastors and church leaders

Learn more about the history and learnings from the earlier English ministry pastors and church leaders that were in the ethnic Chinese churches of the United States. EM pastors of Korean American churches and other Asian American ethnicities will find these articles as a reference of research.

The following resources are free downloads at open.djchuang.com

Fellowship of American Chinese Evangelicals (FACE)

FACE published a quarterly newsletter, AboutFACE, from 1979-2003 and entire archive can be downloaded.

Alternatively, this collection of articles was adapted and published as a book in 2009, “Completing the FACE of the Chinese Church in America: the ABC Handbook: Promoting Effective Ministries to American-Born Chinese” by William L. Eng, Joseph C. Wong, Wayland Wong, David K. Woo and Peter Yuen.

Chinese American Christians (CAC) Forum

The CAC Forum was an active discussion forum that ran from 1995 to 2002. The CAC Forum archives provide a historical knowledge base about Chinese/Asian American Christianity.

Venn Diagram: Asian American Identity, Christianity, and Politics — January 19, 2019

Venn Diagram: Asian American Identity, Christianity, and Politics

Venn Diagram is an event for Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Christians organized by the InterVarsity Graduate and Faculty Ministries. Yes, Asian American Christians and politics. Hashtag #aapijesuspolitics.

Venn Diagram: Preparing for 2020 on August 3, 2019. The event will be held at EBCLA (1255 San Gabriel Blvd, Rosemead, CA 91770) from 9:00am – 1:00pm.

Previous Events

Its 5th time was at Fuller Seminary on Saturday, January 19, 2019; this is excerpted from the Facebook event facebook.com/events/347443382696361

Tweets from Venn Diagram events

Venn Diagram II - July 2018

Christmas at Saddleback 2018, all of its campus locations and Lake Forest too — November 25, 2018

Christmas at Saddleback 2018, all of its campus locations and Lake Forest too

(update 12/01/18) the full website for the 2018 Christmas at Saddleback Church is up now at saddleback.com/christmas

Christmas at Saddleback

Previously..

The dates and times for the Christmas celebrations and events at Saddleback Church were published in the weekend bulletin on Nov 24-25, for Lake Forest campus-

Lots of fun pre-Christmas events for families and friends!

Saddleback Church Christmas 2018 at Lake Forest campus

  • Saturday 12/22 @ 2p, 4p, 6p
  • Sunday 12/23 @ 9a, 11a, 4p, 6p
  • Monday 12/24 @ 1p, 3p, 5p, 7p, 9p, 11p
  • Tuesday 12/25 @ 11a