How The Inland Northwest Cooperative started...
For several years, Grace Christian Fellowship (GCF), located in Spokane, WA, was part of a church planting network headquartered on the East Coast. Unfortunately, the nearest church in the network was eight hours away. The distances between GCF and partner churches were too vast for meaningful partnership. After leaving the organization, they investigated other church planting networks, but most were too far away or did not align with their theology and values. GCF desired to plant churches in the Inland Northwest with like-minded churches but was unsure how to proceed.
In the meantime, God was doing some amazing things in Spokane. After the first Together for the Gospel conference in Louisville (2006), a group of Spokane pastors from reformed, gospel-centered, complementarian, elder-led churches, who love expository preaching, started meeting monthly for lunch and discussions on various ministry topics. Since that time, these same Spokane pastors have participated together in various local conferences (Aspire, The Simeon Trust, 9 Marks, and The Spurgeon Fellowship).
Through these local partnerships, a friendship between Dave Farley, a pastor at Grace Christian Fellowship, and Kyle Schwahn, a pastor at Indian Trail Church (ITC), began. They realized their churches had the same theology and values, and while rooming together at a conference in 2019, Dave and Kyle brainstormed about forming a church planting/church resourcing network to serve the Inland Northwest. Because they value building relationships with churches, they limited the geographic scope of the network to anywhere within three hours of Spokane to make it easy for INC pastors to gather a few times a year.
After the conference, Dave and Kyle put their thoughts on paper and sought the approval of the ITC and GCF elder boards. Each church's elder board approved the plans and more discussion followed at a joint elder session. Soon after, Dave and Kyle began to recruit the support of like-minded churches.
Dave and Kyle are excited to partner with local churches in the Inland Northwest that are committed to reformed theology, complementarianism, Baptist ecclesiology, the centrality of the local church, and gospel-centered expository preaching. They hope and pray that God uses the INC to plant and strengthen healthy local churches in the Inland Northwest for decades.
Inland Northwest Cooperative Founders
David is the lead pastor of Grace Christian Fellowship in Spokane, Washington. He is a graduate of Washington State University, Covenant Theological Seminary (MATS), and Western Seminary (ThM, DMin). He has been married for 22 years to Heidi and is the father of five boys (ages 7-17). He loves church history, tennis, Seahawk football, and spending time with his family.
Kyle has served as the preaching pastor at Indian Trail Church in Spokane, WA since 2008. He co-directs the Inland Northwest chapter of the Gospel Coalition, and the Spurgeon Fellowship-Spokane. He holds degrees from Moody Bible Institute (BS) and Western Seminary (MA). He has been married to Melissa for 20 years, and is the father of three girls (ages 10-16).