Millennials world-wide flocking to C3 church – started by a couple from Masterton

C3 Church

The C3 church was begun by a couple from Masterton. It has gone from one small church to more than 450 churches in 64 countries, including New Zealand.

Christian City Church, better known as C3, has its origins in a church started up in Sydney by a New Zealand couple Phil and Chris Pringle in 1980.

The Pringles were childhood  sweethearts who went to high-school together in Masterton.

C3, has tapped into the millennials.

“I think that, without sounding judgmental … sometimes the presentation of religion can be tailored more towards irrelevance,” C3 pastor Sam Picken, 32, the Pastor of the C3 in Toronto.

“I think it seems like (Jesus is) un-relatable because we picture him in his surroundings, in his context from back in the day,” say Picken.

“But if he was alive today, I would think that he would have an Instagram account.

“I think he would wear similar clothes to what we wear, I think he would hang out at Trinity-Bellwoods and he’d probably drink coffee from many of the cafes that we go to today…”

“What we try and do at C3 is talk about the Bible and talk about Jesus and make the (services) relatable and real.

C3’ has dressed-down approach to Sunday services – Picken delivers his sermons wearing skinny jeans and t-shirts.

And its active presence on social media appears to have struck a chord.

In the five years since it set up in Toronto, the congregation, made mostly of millennials, has grown from eight to a steady 800 and 1,100 people attended its 2017 Easter Sunday service.

The Pringles were living in a hippie community in Christchurch when they “happened upon a small Pentecostal church where they were radically saved and set free.”

They married shortly after and moved to Australia.

The Pringles founded the first Christian City Church – as it was known then – on the Northern Beaches of Sydney in 1980.


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