PC(USA) church-planting pioneer co-founded Pittsburgh’s Hot Metal Bridge in 2004
by Paul Seebeck | Presbyterian News Service
LOUISVILLE — One of the early pioneers in the church planting movement in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has been named the coaching associate for 1001 New Worshiping Communities (NWC) in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
The Rev. Jeff Eddings Sr., pastor at Hot Metal Bridge, a church he co-founded in 2004, will join the 1001 team in January. He and Hot Metal Bridge’s associate pastor Mike Holohan will become half-time co-pastors at the urban church in the south side of Pittsburgh following this transition.
“I’m grateful for this opportunity and excited to serve with the 1001 NWC team,” said Eddings, who has been a long-time member of the PC(USA) new church coaching network, even before it was part of the NWC movement.
“This is where God has been leading,” he said. “The pruning process will allow things to grow in me and at Hot Metal.”
1001 New Worshiping Community coordinator Vera White said she loves that Eddings will be doing coaching work in a bi-vocational capacity. By leading the 1001 coaching network, while providing pastoral leadership at Hot Metal Bridge, Eddings will provide inspiration and a role model for new worshiping community leaders seeking fresh ways of making new ministry.
“Jeff has a great pastoral presence,” said White. “He’s been a highly effective coach for several of our worshiping communities. I’m looking forward to seeing how he can help all of our coaches grow in their coaching skills.”
Eddings believes an important part of his work, will be in how he matches coaches with new worshiping community pastors. By listening carefully listening to the “giftedness” of each coach and pastor, he hopes they find the right coach. “It’s like finding the right therapist,” Eddings said. “One you connect with and who you feel understands where you are coming from.”
Highly relational, Eddings loves the mentoring aspect of coaching — and bringing perspective and encouragement to NWC leaders who often feel like they are doing the work alone. From experience, Eddings knows that feeling.
“NWC leaders are in a constant state of discernment,” he said, continually asking, “What is next?”
Eddings said he felt Hot Metal Bridge has been replanted at least four times because the cultural and spiritual context required it. He acknowledged the way Hot Metal Bridge was started wouldn’t necessarily work today.
“The constant change is exciting, but tiring,” he said. “It can wear on you; the work is to stay constantly fluid.”
“I’m looking forward to getting to know our coaches and leaders more intimately. I want to be a chaplain for them, where they can call upon me for pastoral guidance.”
Eddings will begin his duties as 1001 NWC coaching associate December 4, 2017.
The 1001 movement was approved by the 220th General Assembly (2012) to create 1,001 new worshiping communities by 2022. Currently, there are more than 400 active new worshiping communities across the country.
You may freely reuse and distribute this article in its entirety for non-commercial purposes in any medium. Please include author attribution, photography credits, and a link to the original article. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDeratives 4.0 International License.
Categories: Worshiping Communities
Tags: 1001, 1001 new worshiping, 1001 new worshiping communities, 1001 NWC, jeff eddings, Mission Program Grants, new worshiping communities, pcusa, presbyterian, racial ethnic and women's ministries
Ministries: 1001 New Worshiping Communities, Theology, Formation & Evangelism, Racial Equity & Women’s Intercultural Ministries, Mission Program Grants