Dr. Chris Neufeld-Erdman joined the DCC community on Palm Sunday, March 29th, 2015, and adds his gifts and vision to the mix of strong leadership at DCC. In his work as a teacher, soul-friend, curator of community life, and steward of life in the heart of Davis, he strives to articulate the real message of Jesus to the spiritual seeker of the 21st century. A creative pastoral and spiritual theologian, Chris will thrive in Davis and at DCC, a community church that draws from and impacts the wider community.
Under Chris’ pastoral leadership, DCC continues its long tradition of being a congregation that’s daring, creative, loving, and alive to faith and hope. He nurtures an experience of faith that is inviting while engaging real social problems. Chris hopes to connect in meaningful ways with the large number of young adults in Davis, who are seeking meaning and a sense of belonging among groups that work for the welfare of the communities where they live and for the good of the larger planet. While they are often turned off by organized religion, Chris works to invite them to experience the source and goal of religion without the stale dogmas and self serving agendas of the institutions that are meaningless to them.
Chris joins a creative leadership team who witness to the Reign of God here and now, offering people an answer to their inner hunger for belonging and meaning. Chris says, “Let’s embody a faith experience that acknowledges everyone as a beloved child of God, and all the earth as holy. This certainly means advocacy for and inclusion of socially marginalized persons, but it also means a theological, ethical, and spiritual engagement with science, pluralism, politics and economics, as well as the environment.”
Born and raised in Colorado, Chris earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Colorado State University and a Masters of Divinity degree from Fuller Theological Seminary. He’s also studied at the Ecumenical Center in Geneva, Switzerland, the Ecumenical Institute in Bossey, Switzerland, and the Vancouver School of Theology, in Vancouver, British Columbia. He earned his Doctor of Ministry degree in Gospel and Culture studies at Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, Georgia. He served on the faculty of Fresno Pacific University where he taught spirituality, preaching, and leadership courses at the FPU Biblical Seminary. In Fresno, he was also involved in the community, participating in interfaith dialog, helping address homelessness, and advocating for sound environmental stewardship.
Chris has traveled in the Dominican Republic, Africa, the Middle East, and Europe and has particular interest and expertise in the contribution of ancient monasticism and Celtic spirituality for the formation of missional and emergent communities today, as well as movements for the common good that specialize in social innovation and entrepreneurship.
His articles have appeared in Leadership Journal, Books and Culture, and The International Review of Mission. He is author of Beyond Chaos: Living the Christian Family in a World Like Ours (1996), and Countdown to Sunday: A Daily Guide for Those Who Dare to Preach (2007). He is a contributor to several other books including An Emergent Manifesto of Hope (2007). His recent books include, Ordinary Preacher, Extraordinary Gospel: A Daily Guide for Wise, Empowered Preachers (2014), and A Table for All: How I Came to Understand the Gospel Means Full Inclusion of Gays and Lesbians (2015).
He is married to Patty Neufeld. Together they enjoy five adult children, their spouses, partners, and a grandson.