It all began when a reluctant sixteen year old boy was sent off to church camp. There, he met Christ and suddenly began telling everyone he could about Jesus. After this life changing encounter, Fred Herron knew he was supposed to become a pastor. He spent years studying at Baylor, Southwestern Baptist Seminary and Fuller Theological Seminary to prepare himself. Along the way, he met Janet and they were married. After graduating from seminary, Fred took his first pastor job - as a youth pastor at a small church in Hampton, Virginia.
Fred and Janet started to sense that God was telling them to move back home and start a church. So, they took a step of faith, quit their paying jobs, loaded up the car and moved back to Kansas City – with only the spare change in their pockets and dozens of people praying for them.
In September 1990, Vineyard Christian Fellowship of Kansas City Missouri was formed. It began as a small group - literally two couples - meeting in a living room weekly to explore faith. But they had a passion to invite others into a purpose filled lifestyle of following Jesus. Fred spent many hours, days, weeks, and months going door-to-door, phoning old acquaintances and inviting strangers to think about becoming part of a new church, a different church, a church they hadn’t experienced before.
Slowly, others joined them. Imperfect people who were looking for real down-to-earth, lingo-free teaching and good, modern, worship music. They started to grow as these people invited their friends to join in. Within a few months, they ran out of space in their home. So, they started their first Sunday morning service at Lakeview Middle School in September 1992. And then even more people invited their friends to this new church to experience something they’ve never experienced before. The church was growing and needed to find a permanent home.
In September 2001, Vineyard Church became the new official name as we moved from the middle school into our first building near Northwest 124th Street and US Highway 169 - near the northern city limits of Kansas City Missouri. This location became the first Vineyard Church campus – a place filled with come-as-you are atmosphere, fantastic worship, great practical teaching, amazing children’s programs and lots of great coffee.
Since 2001, we’ve planted churches in California, Kansas, Switzerland, Ecuador and Ethiopia; and, we’ve been able to launch 3 more campuses in the Kansas City metro area.
Vineyard Church has grown through God’s grace and by sticking to our core values. Just like we started in 1990, we're still imperfect people inviting others - no matter what their past - to join us as we explore what it means to follow Jesus. We've seen lives changed, broken families restored, deep hurts healed and freedom found in our community and around the world.
We're excited to see where God takes us in the future. Come, join us.