Willow Creek Names Megachurch Pastor From Michigan as New Senior Pastor

By Julie Roys

Two years after its founding pastor, Bill Hybels, stepped down amid allegations of sexual misconduct, Willow Creek Community Church has named Dave Dummitt, a megachurch pastor from Michigan, as its new senior pastor.

Dummitt is the founding and lead pastor at 2/42 Community Church—a church with seven campuses in and around Ann Arbor, Michigan, and an average attendance of about 10,000. Dummitt launched 2/42 in 2005 with a team of 35 people meeting in his living room. The church quickly grew and was named by Outreach Magazine as one of the fastest growing churches in America from 2015—2018. 

In an email to the Willow Creek, the elders at Willow Creek wrote:

We have spent many hours with Dave and his wife, Rachel, and we are grateful that God has called their family to serve at Willow. Throughout the evaluation process, we continued to see Dave’s ability to lead with humility and strength, as well as his passion to equip and empower strong teams. His vision for the health and growth of Willow Creek and the kingdom at large, his high-caliber teaching ability, his humble and down-to-earth personality, and his willingness to engage in restorative work made it clear that he would be a strong fit for this position.

Similarly, Dummitt said in a video to Willow Creek attenders, “Over these past few months, we’ve sensed God leading us to come and be a part of what He’s doing in and through Willow. And I’ve gotta tell you, I couldn’t be more hopeful and on the edge of my seat for what God is gonna do as we journey on mission with Him together.”

Dave Dummitt and family

The elders said Dummitt will move to Illinois in May and will preach his first service the weekend of June 6-7.

Dummit seems committed to the same model of seeker-targeted ministry as Willow Creek. In a promotional video at 2/42’s website, Dummitt assures people that when they visit his church, the church won’t embarrass them by “having you stand or raise your hand.” And he says the services are designed to communicate “basic biblical truths and how they apply to everyday lives,” so people can take the “next step” with God. 

Dummit’s 2/42 Church is known for housing complete community centers within their church buildings, including indoor soccer fields, playscapes, fitness facilities, and a cafe. Dummitt told Outreach Magazine that his church “designed the facilities around three things that we think people are drawn to—food, art, and sports.”

Prior to pastoring 2/42, Dummitt served as North American Regional Director for NewThing, a global church planting network. And under Dummit’s leadership,  2/42 has helped plant more than 30 churches. 

Dummitt also serves as a personal coach and consultant for The Collective, a ministry consulting company. He also served on the board for the Solomon Foundation, which claims it’s the fastest-growing church extension fund for four years. 

Dummit is a graduate of Wheaton College in Wheaton, IL, and also attended Asbury Theological Seminary. He is married and has four children. 

“Meet Dave” Video:

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13 thoughts on “Willow Creek Names Megachurch Pastor From Michigan as New Senior Pastor”

  1. I believe this is a step backwards.

    Feb 11 I sent an email to the elders:

    “To the elders.
    Please consider the possibility that God doesn’t want you to have a senior pastor. ”

    Mar 6, they replied:

    “We are seeking to hire a senior pastor who will help build a team to lead our church. We don’t want to put the sole emphasis and responsibility on a single individual. However, it is important to hire this role at this time. Part of the interview process is seeking the candidate’s perspective on what it would look like to build a team that shares responsibility”

    I replied:

    “Thank you for your reply.

    It is the mindset of a business or a corporation to hire a CEO to build and lead a team.
    But this is not the pattern from the Bible.

    When he was here on earth the Lord Jesus was the only “senior pastor” of the church.

    After the resurrection, the elders were responsible for governing the church but even today, Jesus should be our only “senior pastor”.

    Given the numerous scandals involving the senior pastors of churches, this should give you pause for thought.”

    1. MEGA CHURCHES HAVE MOSTLY ENDED UP BEING A SOCIAL CLUB FOR PEOPLE JUST TO GATHER AND LOOK FOR SELF TO BE BUILT UP BUT IF U LISTEN TO MOST CONVERSATIONS JESUS IS NOT THE CENTER OF DISCUSSION THEY ARE THE CHURCH TEACHES SMALL GROUPS TO GATHER PLAY SPORTS DO YOGA CLASSES AND EXCERIZE BUT OUR WEEKLY RELATIONSHIPS MUST CONSIST OF EACH ONE OF US TEACHING EACH OTHER HOW JESUS INTER ACTED WITH THE LOST POOR AND SICK AND ELDERLY ONLY THE BROKEN AND CONTRITE OF HEART UNDERSTAND THAT THE FEEL GOOD GOSPEL DOES NOT BELONG N THE CONFINDS OF THE BUILDING IF THE PREACHING IS NOT CONVICTING NO ONE GROWS OR CHANGES YES JESUS IS THE LEED SHEPERD

  2. It’s unfortunate to read such pessimism on this thread – before the new pastor has even moved to the area! That’s not very welcoming, especially from the body of Christ. How about we, you know, PRAY?
    Let’s pray for Dave, his family, and Willow Creek – that this may be a Godly partnership that moves WC through this challenging season and into God’s purpose and plan for His church.

  3. This is not a surprising move as this likely works like a friendly corporate takeover. The smaller network of satellites get merged in to Willow Creek. They all have the same charismatic individual over them. Giving the timing and the amount of debt of Willow Creek, let alone whatever it is for the new merging churches this “pastor” Chief-Pharisee brings with him are unsustainable and the current model of satellite churches is going bankrupt quickly. This will likely just accelerate the crash of the group that Dummitt has begun. We live in the age of following charismatic and narcissistic leaders instead of the Holy Spirit. I doubt that Willow will exist at the end of this year and that will be on Dummitt’s resume. The creek is drying up due to the narcissistic support system that still controls this false church.

    What needs to happen is what is written in 2 Chron. 7:13 “When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send a plague among my people, if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

  4. Here’s Willow Creek Community Church’s new senior pastor Dave Dummitt, literally last Sunday, Easter, from the pulpit of the megachurch he founded in Michigan:

    “I had a husband tell on his wife a couple weeks ago that she actually watched church online from the bathtub okay? Uh, ma’am if you’re doing that today, please stop, okay? That’s awkward for me, okay, to think about that”

    This is David Dummitt grooming the women of his congregation from the stage of 242 Community Church last Sunday on Easter. He wants them all to know he finds it awkward to think about them being naked while watching him preach on Easter.

    He’s going to fit right in at Willow Creek Community Church, who have never publicly named and condemned the decades of cruel sexual assault and sexual harassment perpetrated by their founder and long time leader Bill Hybels.

    #OutHybels

  5. So this is revealing on two fronts…one, that a founder of a ‘successful church’ leaves to go anywhere but Heaven
    and second, that a mega multi member church can’t find a born again believer, from within the congregation worthy to be the ‘lead, head, senior’ pastor.

  6. Hmmm? New Senior Pastor???

    Was wondering…

    Has anyone ever noticed… In the Bible…

    NOT one of **His Disciples** was ever “Hired” as a…
    Paid, Professional, Pastor, in a Pulpit?
    Preaching, to People, in Pews?
    Weak after Weak?
    In a church?

    NOT one of **His Disciples** ever took the “Title” Pastor?
    Or shepherd? Or leader? Or reverend?
    ——-

    If being one of **His Disciples** is important? To you?
    Wouldn’t what Jesus taught **His Disciples** be important?
    Wouldn’t what **His Disciples** DID, be important?

    And, in the Bible…
    NOT one of **His Disciples** ever called themself Pastor?
    Or shepherd? Or leader? Or reverend?

    NOT one of **His Disciples** ever called another Disciple Pastor?
    Or shepherd? Or leader? Or reverend?
    ——-

    Jer 50:6
    “My people” hath been “lost sheep:”
    **THEIR shepherds**
    have caused them to *go astray,*

    1 Pet 2:25
    For ye were as *sheep going astray;*
    BUT are now returned to
    the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

    {{{{{{ Jesus }}}}}}

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