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Denominations - Protestant

Short profiles of selected Christian denominations in the U.S.

About the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)

Date Founded:  1832

Membership/Number of Clergy:  639,551/6,892 as of 2010

Headquarters:  130 East Washington Street, Indianapolis, Indiana 46204

Schools & Seminaries:  Colleges:  Barton College, Bethany College, Chapman University, Columbia College, Culver-Stockton College, Drury University, Eureka College, Hiram College, Jarvis Christian College, Lynchburg College, Midway College, Texas Christian University, Transylvania University, William Woods University

Seminaries: Brite Divinity School, Christian Theological Seminary, Disciples Divinity House of the University of Chicago, Disciples Divinity House at Vanderbilt University, Disciples Seminary Foundation, Lexington Theological Seminary, Phillips Theological Seminary

Publications:  Chalice Press is the book publishing arm of the church. The Disciples News Service publishes a number of online newsletters.  Subscriptions are open to anyone.


Social Media:  Facebook, Twitter

Core Beliefs: "The Lord's Supper or Communion is celebrated in weekly worship. It is open to all who are followers of Jesus Christ. The practice of Holy Communion has become the central element of worship within the Disciples tradition."  "Just as the baptism represents the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ, it symbolizes the death and burial of the old self of the repentant believer, and the joyous birth of a brand new being in Christ. Those who founded the Disciples movement taught baptism by immersion as the accepted form.  From "Word to the Church on Baptism," Commission on Theology, 1987"

Short History:  Created by the merger of the Christian Church (founded around 1801 by Presbyterian pastor Barton Stone as a rejection of tests the church required to participate in communion) and the Disciples of Christ (founded by Presbyterians Thomas and Alexander Campbell who rejected the rigid denominationalism that prevented Christians from other denominations from taking Communion together.)  In 1901, a splinter group, the Churches of Christ, was formed by those who rejected instrumental music and organized missionary work, and in 1926 around 3000 congregations withdrew to form the Christian Churches/Churches of Christ over issues of liberality in baptism in foreign mission.

The Disciples have a history of working ecumenically and have been involved in the formation of organizations that promote Christian unity.

Local Churches:  There are 14 churches in Louisville area. Two are very close to campus: Douglass Boulevard Christian Church, 2005 Douglass Blvd Louisville KY 40205-1997 and Beargrass Christian Church, 4100 Shelbyville Rd Louisville KY 40207-3296.  Use the Find a Congregation page to locate other congregations.

Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) symbol

Symbol of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)