A Miracle in the Making
by Charlotte L Pound
A Miracle in the Making
God’s hand of blessing & provision has been evident upon the church and its great leadership team. To God be the Glory for the great things He has done!
Eureka—The Pentecostal Church, is a vibrant, growing church that has served the Eureka, CA area for over fifty years.Pastored by Jonathan McDonald and his wife Stephanie. He is a 5th generation, Oneness Apostolic. He attended Christian Life College -BA Biblical Studies, served as Sectional Youth Director for several years, and is the current Prayer Coordinator for the Western District.
PRINCIPLES OF GROWTH & REVIVAL
Bro. McDonald feels that a growing church must be a praying church. “Only through prayer can we be yoked together with the Spirit to know which direction to take and the proper timing in which to take it. A growing church must be a lover of people. A growing church must be aligned with Kingdom principles: the mind of God for direction, the heart of God for compassion, and the fear of God for holiness,” he said.
When asking where a revival pastor should place his priorities, the pastor said, “This question has been answered by the apostles. It was through prayer and the ministry of the Word. Prayer keeps the pastor positioned to have ears to hear what the Spirit is saying to the church and the ministry of the Word allows for the edification of the body and the perfecting of the saints. One of the greatest growth endeavors has been through a one on one connection in Bible studies. Many outreaching efforts on a larger scale are used but always with the intent of making personal contact with people one on one,” he stated.
ORGANIZATION & MANAGEMENT
To organize and manage growth, Eureka Church has teams of willing workers.
For Growth, there is an Outreach team and a Discipleship team. For Service, there is the Usher team, Facilities team, Guest Care team, & Eureka Helps team. For Production, there is a Music team, Worship Production team, Videography team, Photography team, Social Media, and Events team. The Body of the church consists of these departments: Eureka Toddlers, Eureka Kids, Eureka Youth, Eureka Hyphen, Eureka Ladies, Eureka Men, Eureka Seniors, Eureka Small Groups, and Eureka Breakthrough Recovery. “We meet with our entire leadership team monthly for a tactical and review type meeting and we meet quarterly for a strategic and developmental type meeting. We meet with individual team leaders weekly as needed to address specifics to their teams. Our team leaders have job descriptions. Currently, leaders do not hand in monthly reports. We have opted for a more one on one connection to meet current needs and keep communications in real-time. Obviously, with the current pandemic, our long-range planning has morphed many times over because of the weekly and sometimes daily governmental changes and restrictions. We do some planning during our quarterly meetings; however, the majority of our planning with our leadership team will take place at our annual leadership retreat, scheduled towards the end of the third quarter where we gather together overnight and review the last year’s numbers, growth, events, wins, losses, etc. and then plan out the calendar and goals for the following year.
Locally, we train our leaders by spending time mentoring one on one. We will have several training sessions at our quarterly meetings. We also have breakout leadership classes we offer at different times throughout the year. Organizationally, we are very thankful for ‘ministry central’ at headquarters that have enriched our lives. We also take advantage of training offered by our district, such as Community West and Teacher training offered by the Children’s Ministry development conference. In the last couple of years, our leadership team has also participated in the virtual leadership ‘Edify Conference.’ We have also sent many of our team leaders to the ‘Motion Conference’ in Pearland, TX, and ‘Effective Church’ conference in Terre Haute, IN.,” he said.
A majority of Eureka members are involved in some form of ministry and serving. “Serving is part of the church culture. It is taught and modeled. Many are involved in evangelism because everything we do is ultimately is for the motto of Jesus, ‘to seek and to save that which is lost,”
To promote and encourage involvement Eureka Church teaches it. “We teach them the importance of it from the pulpit and in class and give them the tools to accomplish their calling and purpose. We model it from the top-down! We expect it! It is our culture and the way we serve the Lord. We reward it! We highlight and brag on people as they fulfill their giftings and callings. We encourage everyone to learn the value of continual mentoring of others. Nothing is more rewarding than seeing your personal disciple or young children working alongside their parents in the kingdom,” he said.
There are eight guiding principles that give Pastor McDonald’s ministry direction and purpose. They are as follows:
1.) Building altars of prayer releases the Holy Ghost fire to fall.
2.) Live completely dependent upon a supernatural intervention of God’s Spirit.
3.) Everything rises and falls on our connection to our source. (Lifestyle of prayer and Word)
4.) ‘Giving’ unlocks the supernatural.
5.) God’s measuring stick of greatness is different than man’s. (God values sacrifice, honesty, faithfulness, not just numbers)
6.) Strong homes produce strong churches
7.) Everything the Lord asks of us is ‘for our good’.
8.) In ministering to people, love is greater than power.
“In thinking about what I enjoy preaching most, I would have to say that I enjoy bragging on Jesus and His ability to make a dramatic difference in every life. I also love to teach a practical Jesus that applies to personal transformation in everyday life. Of late we have been talking about the soon return of our Lord and preparing the way for the King to come.
I would consider the focus of our ministry to be simply to lead the hungry and thirsty in Prayer, Evangelism, and Discipleship,” he said.
Miracle: An extraordinary event manifesting divine intervention in human affairs–M. Webster
“We are in a total miracle church facility. After looking for land to build for many years, and even purchasing (and running) a KOA Campground for 10 years with hopes of one day building a church there, God opened the door for us to swap buildings with another church in town. It was a major upgrade and unbelievable ‘hand of God’ work. Shortly thereafter, we were able to sell our KOA campground, and we were completely debt-free in our new facilities! Praise the Lord for His Divine provision! If God can do it in Eureka, California, He can do it in your town too. You can view this miracle in detail on the website at Eureka.Church”, he said.
The current church home is a beautiful 12-acre campus right off the bay. The campus includes a 700 seat main sanctuary; a 175 seat chapel, 6 classrooms, a commercial kitchen. The Campton Center is a multi-purpose facility. The Hoover Center is a multi-purpose facility with a very large open area, five classrooms, and a spacious kitchen. The Administrative Center has four offices and a large meeting area. There is also a 1,600 sq. ft, 3 bd./ 2 bath, fully furnished Guest House.
Plans are to build a gymnasium and expand the 3 additional smaller church campuses in neighboring cities. “Our current rate of growth is not nearly enough, but we are doing our best at what He asked us to do and we are leaving the results to Him,” he said.
“We have had a total of three different church locations in the last 50 years. We also currently have three branch works—all with debt-free facilities. Outreach methods we used in the early years were Prayer and Bible studies, and these principles remain a foundation today.
Jonathon McDonald was born in Eureka in 1970, the same year his parents came to Eureka to pastor. “I was privileged to be raised in a truly apostolic home by godly parents that gave themselves for the work of the ministry. I was baptized at seven years old and received the Holy Ghost at 11,” he said.
One unique aspect of Bro. McDonald’s youth that influenced his ministry was the eight years he spent in Bible quizzing. He feels it helped prepare and guide his future decisions.
Upon graduation from CLC, he had the privilege of coming back to his home church and assisting his father for 18 years, until his retirement. “I am thankful for a godly heritage of great apostolic pioneers that helped pave the way for the apostolic message (including my great grandfather, A.D. Urshan, and grandfather T.R. McDonald). They were builders of men and dreams. They lived life seemingly on a continual fast and in a continual prayer meeting. They boldly fought hell and preached this Jesus message with fire! My parents (John and Marilyn McDonald) and my wife’s parents (Steve and Pat Wilson) are my modern-day heroes. In past generations I was influenced by; David Gray for his love of Truth, JT Pugh for his love of a personal relationship with Jesus, Kenneth Haney for his love of kingdom vision. In the present generation, I am influenced by Anthony Mangun for his passion for souls, Raymond Woodward for his Biblical insights, Lee Stoneking for his Apostolic vibrance, and Chester Wright for his understanding of resting in the Lord. And also many anonymous, unknown saints that daily and faithfully serve God. I am inspired and am in awe of church planters that dig out a church in this current day. Great will be their reward in heaven,” he said.
The Early Years
“I was privileged to be exposed to and interact with a supernatural flow of the Spirit from my childhood. My pulpit ministry didn’t start until I was 20. I preached my first sermon at my home church in Eureka. The title of one of my first sermons was ‘Stop Tithing’. I titled it as such because it probably lacked substance and anointing, and I needed a bold title to help hold their attention. Obviously, it was not about ‘robbing God’, but about giving Him all of our heart and life, not just a part,” he said.
Listing the milestones of ministry, Bro. McDonald told us that; he grew up in church…. sold peanut brittle, mowed lawns, cleaned the church, repaired broken plumbing, etc. He felt called to preach at nine years of age. Bible quizzing and youth work was a big part of his teenage years. After attending local Jr. College, he attended CLC for 4 years. Served as Christian School Principal for several years. Married in 1999, “I was blessed with my incredible wife, Stephanie, that comes from 5 generations of apostolic heritage as well. We have three wonderful children; Sydney, Symon, & Jantz; all serving the Lord and involved in kingdom ministry,” he said.
Bro. McDonald served as assistant pastor for 18 years, and as senior pastor for nine years.
For more information please visit, Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheEurekaChurch/