About Our Church
Glen Ellyn Bible Church is a place for people just like you, your friends and your family. We are here to help you in any way we can. We make this offer because the God we worship and serve cares about people. He cares about you.
From the worship services (9am and 10:30am every Sunday) to the Sunday-school classes (for all ages) to student groups and small groups—everything we do is to help people walk the journey of life. Presently about 700 people attend the worship services. Approximately 125 middle school and high school students count GEBC as their church home. The children’s ministry serves over 200 kids.
Browse our site. Learn more about us. Give us the opportunity to build a bridge to you and for you. In the process, we are confident that God will help bring about the changes you long for in your life.
Glen Ellyn Bible Church is a place for people just like you, your friends and your family. We are here to help you in any way we can. We make this offer because the God we worship and serve cares about people. He cares about you.
Inspired by Acts 2:44 ("All believers were together and had everything in common."), our vision is for every member of the congregation to ENGAGE each other, with those in need, and with spiritual seekers in relationships.
The primary purpose of the church is to glorify God by making disciples. This is the single greatest contribution the church can make in this world, and toward that end all of our programming at Glen Ellyn Bible Church will be driven by at least one of the four disciple-making activities we’ve identified as part of our method.
With the common commitments to children’s and student ministries, supporting missionaries, and a shared passion to reach their community with the gospel, these two churches merged to form what is now known as Glen Ellyn Bible Church
Since 1943, the church has continued to build on its commitments to each of ministry focuses. In 1960, the church planted a congregation on Park Boulevard, near the present location of Glenbard South High School. The church plant grew to over 200 people in three years.
During the 1980s, Gary Gulbranson served as Senior Pastor, and Glen Ellyn Bible Church experienced significant growth in attendance. The late 1980s were a time of facility improvement as well, with Rathbun Hall and additional education space being built. In 1994, Jim Cofield began serving as Senior Pastor, and it became clear that, to better meet the needs of the congregation, some updating was necessary. Air conditioning was installed, the basement was remodeled and the Worship Center was upgraded with a new sound system, pews, carpet, stage and lighting. At the same time, all remaining debt was retired.
As we look ahead, we are thankful for our heritage and God’s faithfulness to our community of faith.Kelly Brady
In February 2010, Pastors Brian From and Dave Schubert were sent out, along with 72 adults and children, to plant Four Corners Community Church (FCCC) in Downers Grove, Illinois. Today, FCCC averages nearly 300 in worship on Sunday mornings.
January of 2015 marked a new era in the life of our church with the launching of the Engage Vision. Out of years of prayer and seeking God’s wisdom for what was next for our community of faith the Engage vision was born. The Engage Vision guides everything we do at Glen Ellyn Bible and was the catalyst for launching our Caregiving Center in August of 2015, which serves over 200 under-resourced families in our community each month.
As we look ahead, we are thankful for our heritage and God’s faithfulness to our community of faith. We are also excited about what we believe God has called us to do in reaching the broken and in growing followers of Christ. God has done many great things in and through this church. We believe that the best days for God’s church are before us!
With One Another in Fellowship
To pray, study Scripture, and reach out to others, with the hope of knowing Jesus and making him known.
WITH THOSE IN NEED IN CAREGIVING
To meet the physical needs of others, with the hope of demonstrating Jesus' love for all.
WITH SPIRITUAL SEEKERS IN RELATIONSHIP
To share our faith story, with the hope of helping others find faith.
The primary purpose of the church is not to make us feel better about ourselves. The church is not a self-help community, aiming simply at empowering us to live lives that are more balanced and more successful. The church’s purpose is not to make us happy, or to entertain us with programming, or to provide a safe community insulated from the harsh realities of the world. The primary purpose of the church is to glorify God by making disciples. This is the single greatest contribution the church can make in this world, and toward that end all of our programming at GEBC will be driven by at least one of the four disciple-making activities we’ve identified as part of our method. These are explained in-depth below.
He commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that he is the one whom God appointed as judge of the living and the dead. Acts 10:42 (NIV)
The good news of God’s grace necessarily implies there must be some bad news. Peter goes on in this passage to explain that the gospel is an invitation to escape certain judgment. The work of Christ is significant because of the presence of sin in our lives and the threat of judgment before a holy and righteous God! Like Peter, we are have been commissioned by Jesus to proclaim the gospel. “Go and make disciples of all nations,” Jesus said (Matthew 28:19). We are God’s ambassadors and proclaiming the good news of God’s grace and calling all people to live lives of worship is to be a primary activity of the church. Paul wrote:
How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? Romans 10:14 (NIV)
When Cornelius heard the gospel from Peter he was transformed immediately. We read, “While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message. For they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God.” (Acts 10:44, 46) The point of this passage is not that everyone who receives Christ will speak in tongues. The point of this passage is that all people can be saved and receive God’s Holy Spirit, even gentiles like Cornelius, and worship is the response all will have to experiencing God’s grace. As the Church is faithful in proclaiming God’s grace, it will always produce lives that bring God praise.
The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor. Luke 4:17-19 (NIV)
Jesus’ provided hope to the poor and release to those captive to sin and oppressed by evil spirits. He healed every disease (Matthew 4:17,23), and commissioned the twelve disciples to do the same.
As you go, preach this message: ‘The Kingdom of heaven is near.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received, freely give. Matthew 10:6-8 (NIV)
God’s goal in restoration is that we would be holy, just as he is holy (1 Peter 1:16). In the process of transformation those things we once had no interest in, and no desire to experience, often become attractive. We grow to desire sobriety rather than drunkenness, honesty rather than dishonesty, modesty and fidelity rather than immodesty and promiscuity; or to express ourselves more fully in worship or to understand God’s Word better. God intends for us to grow into mature believers, by allowing Him to restore our souls and fully bear his image.
Paul writes, “if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation” (2 Corinthians 5:17), which describes the process of being restored as image bearers. Restoration increasingly comes to us as we depend upon the Holy Spirit’s work and connect with other believers in intimate relationships. God’s design is that the members of his church, through the Holy Spirit’s empowering, would help to restore one another. Paul wrote, “Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently” (Galatians 6:1). Being the church of God’s design means helping one another become God’s image bearers. Paul wrote, “Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:2). We cannot expect to experience the restoration of Christ, without intimate relationships with other believers. Part of God’s remedy for our struggles is a deep connection with other believers. James wrote:
Is any one of you sick? He should call the Elders of the church to pray over him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven. James 5:14-15 (NIV)
It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. Ephesians 4:11-13 (NIV)
While Paul only names a few of the gifts of the Spirit in this passage, his aim is not to create a hierarchy of importance within the church. In fact, his aim when explaining the Holy Spirit’s gifts is quite the opposite. Paul’s goal is that all believers understand that they have been given at least one gift by the Holy Spirit, which they are to use for the common good (1 Corinthians 12:7), and that apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers are gifted to help “prepare” others for service. The word Paul uses for “prepare” is the Greek word katartismon, which comes from a verb meaning to repair. This verb is used to describe activities like setting a bone in surgery or putting a joint back into place. In the New Testament, it is used in Mark1:19 to describe the mending of fishing nets, and in Galatians 6:1 it is used to describe the process of restoring someone caught in sin.
The picture Paul wants to provide here is of people using their spiritual gifts in order to strengthen one another for lives of obedience and service. In some cases that will simply involve instruction, and that particular function is the responsibility of those given the gift of teaching. In other cases preparation will involve correction and even healing, which might involve the gift of mercy or faith. But the goal is that the people of God are ready and able to live lives of obedience and find their place of service.
Once people obediently find their place of service, the use of their gifts is to have a very particular outcome. Paul writes in Ephesians 4:12 that God has given gifts “so that the body of Christ may be built up,” or enabled. Our gifts are to add strength to one another’s lives and families. In fact, all the gifts are always given for the greater good of God’s people, which is why it is so offensive when someone uses their gifts to empower or enrich themselves. God’s gifts are also to produce in us maturity. Paul writes, “Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth…blown here and there by every wind of teaching” (Ephesians 4:14). Immaturity brings instability in our lives, and it our responsibility to help one another build our lives upon the sure footing of God’s Word.
At the end of his ministry, Jesus commissioned all of his followers to go and make disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:19-20), and the early church set apart missionaries for the purpose of carrying the gospel to foreign lands (Acts 13:2-3). Disciples are a people sent out, and sending out disciples is an essential activity of the Church. Jesus even instructs his followers to pray that God would provide more workers for the harvest fields (Matthew 9:37-38), more people to go.
The good news is we are not sent out alone. Jesus promises to be with us always (Matthew 28:20), and to provide us with the power from Spirit of God, power specifically for the purpose of being witnesses. Jesus said,
“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1:8 (NIV)
One of the primary purposes of the Spirit’s transforming work in our lives is to empower our witnessing efforts. The church is to send disciples out with the authority of Jesus (Matthew 28:18) and power of Jesus Spirit (Acts 1:8), to demonstrate the selfless love of Jesus and pursue the lost. In other words, the Holy Spirit is not given simply for our benefit, so that our influence and kingdom can grow larger and more prosperous. The Spirit’s transforming work in our hearts and minds is to empower us for sharing the gospel. God changes hearts and minds so the world can hear the message of the gospel.
The transforming power of the Holy Spirit was obvious in the lives of the first disciples, men and women whose hearts were previously full of doubt and whose minds were filled only with thoughts of self-interest, were changed to people of faith and self-sacrifice. We read in the book of Acts the believers were of “one heart and mind” and that “none of them claimed anything as his own, but rather everything was held in common.” They shared all things! And the result was that the message of the gospel was preached “with great power” (Acts 4:32-35).
Jesus said, “By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another” (John 13:35). We grieve the Holy Spirit’s transforming work in our lives if we aren’t loving toward one another, and the result is that his work of transforming us and our effectiveness in being God’s witnesses is significantly diminished. Paul wrote,
“And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.” Ephesians 4:30-31 (NIV)
Kelly joined the staff of Glen Ellyn Bible Church in 1994. During his tenure, he has overseen children’s, youth and family ministries at one time or another.
In May 2004, Kelly became the senior pastor, with his primary responsibilities being preaching, leading the staff and cultivating and casting vision.
A graduate of Wheaton College, he holds masters degrees in Educational Ministries and Biblical Theology, as well as a doctorate in ministry management and leadership from Trinity International University in Deerfield.
He has self-published two books. The first, Pocket Theology, is designed as a quick reference guide to theological issues. The second, Following Jesus, is an explanation of GEBC’s Disciple-Making Ministry. His passion is to see people grow in their understanding and commitment to Christ.
Married in 1991, Kelly and Sherri have three teenage children.
Nathan joined the GEBC staff as a technical assistant in 2014, and has served in audio and video realms of the church. He is currently the Assistant Student Ministry Director. He earned a degree in Public Relations from Malone University in Canton, Ohio. Throughout his career, he has photographed and filmed for various corporations and non-profits. You can catch him wearing neon at Children’s Ministry game nights, performing stand-up comedy, or cheering on the hopelessness that is Cleveland sports teams.
Erin joined the GEBC team in September of 2017.
Mark joined the staff in January of 2007 as our Facilities Manager and oversees the buildings and grounds here at GEBC. He is accomplished in residential and commercial construction/renovation and is a licensed Illinois Inspector. Mark has been attending GEBC for several years now and is very excited to be serving the great folks he both works and worships with. After living in Raleigh, North Carolina for a number of years with his wife Lisa, he returned home so that he could be closer to family. Mark lives in Glen Ellyn and most of all enjoys spending time with his wife and three beautiful children, Nicole, Evan and Peter. His hobbies include camping, woodworking and tinkering around with things out in his garage.
Carolyn joined the GEBC staff in July 2016 as Preschool Coordinator and in Jan 2017 began her new position as the Adult Ministries Assistant.
Carolyn grew up just a few suburbs away in Elmhurst. For college she set off to Taylor University, where she found great Christian community, enjoyed running cross country and track, and fell in love with her husband Matt. After getting married, they lived in Royal Oak, MI for a few years. Carolyn taught high school mathematics as well. In 2009 they moved back to the area for Matt to be able to go to grad school at IIT in Chicago. They quickly found GEBC and knew this was to be their church home. They wasted no time getting plugged into a small group and serving in the church.
Carolyn has enjoyed tutoring part time while being home with her two kids, Lila and Micah, and gets a good workout in daily chasing them around. She has enjoyed connecting with the families and kids downstairs in Children’s Ministry and is excited for her new role in Adult Ministries. Her and her husband are passionate about connecting with other families in fellowship (this usually always involves food) and spending time together as a family.
Kim joined the GEBC staff in 2017 to fill-in temporarily as Director of the Caregiving Center. Kim and her husband Mark have been attending GEBC for over 12 years and have two grown sons. Bryce lives in Chicago and works in the tech start-up world, and Brandon and his wife BethAnne live in Durham, NC. At GEBC she has served on Worship team, as a small group leader, and with the Caregiving Center, Financial Peace University, and Step-by-Step.
With a BA in Business Management from the University of South Florida (it’s warmer down there), Kim’s career has included many years in the corporate IT industry, non-profit development, small business consulting and owning her own business. She enjoys yoga, golf, singing, playing piano, travel and the Food Channel (much to her husband’s culinary delight). She loves the GEBC staff and her church family, and is always looking for new ways she can use her gifts to further God’s Kingdom.
John serves as the Sending Pastor overseeing the Local and Global Sending Ministry and Student Ministry at Glen Ellyn Bible Church. He attended Washington Bible College in Maryland and has masters degrees from Wheaton in Intercultural Studies and Educational Ministries. He has served churches in Georgia, Colorado, and Illinois. John and Tammie are proud parents of three children. He enjoys snow skiing, hacking at golf, yard work, taking pictures, travel, long meetings, humor, the Boston Red Sox, and Cape Cod beaches. He loves being on staff at GEBC and is passionate about seeing a quiet revolution of men and women worldwide becoming disciples of Jesus.
Janet joined the staff in 2012. She provides support to the worship ministry department. In her “pre-mom” days, she worked as a middle school choir teacher and loves to be surrounded by music at work again. Janet and her husband, Matt, have attended GEBC since 2011 and now take the mini-van filled with their 4 kids to worship each week.
Andrea joined the GEBC team in September of 2017.
Sarah joined the GEBC staff in 2015, and serves in a part-time role as the Assistant Director of the Caregiving Center. Sarah met her husband, Tim, at Wheaton College, where she studied Business & Economics. Following college, Sarah worked briefly in event production before providing fundraising counsel to non-profits. She is excited to see how God is using her previous work experience and passions to help serve His people through the Caregiving Center. When she’s not trying desperately to keep up with her two high-energy boys, Caleb & Jonathan, she enjoys the outdoors and being active.
Mitch Naleway joined the GEBC staff in the Fall of 2017 as our Lead Custodian.
Bonnie joined the GEBC staff in September 2001. As the church Office Manager Bonnie handles many of the financial and administrative duties of the church. Bonnie and her husband, Lance live in Glen Ellyn with their three sons, Eric, Glenn and Luke. Apart from enjoying her role as mom, she loves to travel (especially to the family cabin in the woods in the U.P. of Michigan) and gardening. She is a Glen Ellyn native and has always made her home in the western suburbs.
John and his wife, Kari have been married for 15 years, and they have 5 children: Brayden, Wyatt, Caleb, Annika, and Izzy. Kari grew up in Valparaiso, IN and John is from Holland, MI. They met while they were students at Wheaton College and got married right after graduation. They now live in Winfield and have been a part of Glen Ellyn Bible Church since 2010. John enjoys running, biking and competing in triathlons. He also enjoys outdoor activities and is an avid duck hunter. As a family, they love to spend time together with their extended family on the beach in West Michigan.
Mark joined the GEBC staff in 2016 as the Student Ministries Pastor. He serves primarily as the High School youth pastor but oversees all student ministry for Middle School through College students.
Mark is originally from the northeast, where he spent the first half of his childhood just outside of New York City. Although he spent the second half of his childhood just outside of Boston, Mark’s heart and sports allegiances remain permanently tied to the far-superior New York teams. Mark felt called to ministry in high school, and pursued a degree in Christian Education and Ministry and Bible and Theology at Wheaton College. After graduating in 2011 he joined the staff of an inner-city church plant in Chicago for two years. After marrying his wife, Elle, in 2013 he heard the unmistakable voice of God, saying, “Go West, young man!” Mark and Elle moved out to Denver, where Mark earned his Master of Divinity at Denver Seminary, served as the youth and worship pastor at a local church, and spent his free time shredding the fresh powder of the Rockies. Mark and Elle have a crazy and hilarious daughter named Hadley (2014). Mark enjoys watching and playing pretty much any sport, playing guitar, listening to music, the great outdoors, and doing just about anything with good friends.
Leah and her husband, Ben, have been attending Glen Ellyn Bible Church for almost 15 years and have been involved in almost every ministry GEBC has to offer. Their family (Leah, Ben, J.R. and Lainie) have found real community and support through Glen Ellyn Bible Church in all of life’s ups and downs. Leah was the Children’s Ministries Director in 2002-2006. She left staff to raise her kids and continued to volunteer in the ministry. She rejoined the Glen Ellyn Bible Church staff as the Children’s Ministry Assistant Director in August 2013. She holds a degree in Elementary Education from Wheaton College and has an endorsement in Special Education. Leah is excited to see children passionate for Christ and for their families to get connected and feel supported in that process.
Glen Ellyn Bible Church
501 Hillside Avenue, Glen Ellyn, IL 60137