Over thirty years ago, Ben and Tina Hoerr responded to the call of God to leave Peoria and the family landscape business of which they were a part, and move to Champaign to participate in a fledgling Bible study group they helped start while students at the University of Illinois. Over the next three decades, that group grew to become The Vineyard Church, a thriving local community of 2,800 members on five multi-site campuses where they both served on the staff.
The idea of starting another new church came somewhat as a surprise to Ben and Tina. They were both quite happy in their roles, and planned to spend their entire lives in that community. But beginning in early 2007 it seemed that God was leading them in the direction of change, potentially church planting, something neither had previously considered. By fall of 2009 God had made it clear that they were to be a vital part of their church’s vision of planting churches throughout central Illinois by returning home to Peoria to start a new Vineyard Church! In the following months, the Holy Spirit raised up a team of risk-takers who were also willing to intentionally follow Jesus and be a part of the plant.
In the spring of 2011 that team of fifteen adults and eleven children relocated to Peoria. Our hope is for the Vineyard to be a vibrant, multi-campus community that is biblical, practical, powerful, and fun. So no matter where you are on your spiritual journey—sincere seeker, hardened skeptic, disillusioned church-goer—we would consider it a privilege to play a small but significant part of the story God is writing in your life in this great city.