Rick - Ballard 1997-98, 2005-07

Your Name




Which describes your role at Mars Hill?

Regular Attender, Group Leader (any leadership role)

What Mars Hill location(s) did you attend?


What years were you involved / attending?

1997, 1998, 2005, 2006, 2007

How did you first hear about Mars Hill?

Sermons on podcast and followed the MH outdoors ministry.  On the web primarily

What was the circumstance of your first time attending Mars HIll?

Hard to remember - just moved to Seattle and came to a service. Connected well.  

What were your first impressions?

It was all I was hoping for - a counter-culture existing to worship and to reach the city.  It was real in its approach, raw and called men to move forward.  I was so excited to reach the city with a group of believers.

Why was Mars Hill your church home?

One of the few places that community was a focus in the small groups. It also had an expression of the gospel found in using the outdoors to do the same.  Honest people in my small group and the MH outdoors.  Quality, hardworking, sacrificing people was huge for me.

What about your time at Mars Hill has had a positive impact on you?

Grace was a must!  The gospel was the power and the goal for ministry. The leaders in my community group and MHOutdoors worked hard, cared for people, and pushed us to do life together.

I saw people really grow, make hard decision to follow Jesus and challenged to live a life of contextual mission.

What about your time at Mars Hill has had a negative impact on you?

Some of the protests were hard to watch, a few of the evening services where Mark's rhetoric was less than what should come from the pulpit.

What would you like to have changed about Mars Hill?

I have nothing that isn't selfish or wouldn't be normal for a church of this size. Slower physical growth to care for so many new christians that need deep, long and mature discipleship to carry the church over the long haul of growth.

Which describes you?

I left Mars Hill prior to closure.

Please describe why you left Mars Hill and what that experience was like.

I moved and was incredibly sad to leave the community group, efforts of reaching Seattle, and seeing the MHOutdoors change.  Thankful for the people I was close to and sad to leave.

How would you describe the reason for Mars Hill's closure to an outsider.

Discipleship/Mentoring-its lack of depth, time, maturity and priority. Image idolatry. Pride.

What's changed for you since your time at Mars Hill came to an end?

I am more aware of my own issues that this situation could have just as easily been done by me. There's a bit of fear in taking leadership roles in developing people and communities since the closure.

Please write anything else you'd like to add.

I fully trust God to heal Seattle. To heal the cynicism.  I know there are great people who love Jesus motivated by the gospel still there. Still working for many of the same ends. They have the hard job of picking up the pieces and mending wounds that will/are doing SO MUCH to that end.  Stand firm in love! Give grace. I pray for you often.