Seattle Reboot: Life After Mars Hill

Sarah Eekhoff Zylstra | May 30, 2017


Four years ago, Mars Hill Church in Seattle seemed too big to fail.

Just 17 years old, the church was drawing an average weekly attendance of 12,329 to 15 locations. In fiscal year 2013 alone, Mars Hill baptized more than 1,000 people, planted 53 churches in India, and supported 20 church planters and evangelists in Ethiopia. It released 50 new worship songs, gave away more than 3,000 Bibles in the United States and Ethiopia, and took in nearly $25 million in tithes and offerings.

Then, in a few breathtaking months, the whole thing collapsed. Founder and lead pastor Mark Driscoll’s bent toward the provocative, which was part of his draw, increasingly came under fire, fanned by a series of controversies.

Driscoll announced he was taking a break in August 2014, then resigned less than two months later. By the end of October, lead preaching pastor Dave Bruskas announced the whole thing was shutting down.

“We don’t have anything in church history this apocalyptic, as far as a behemoth like Mars Hill—not only a city but national and international voice—collapsing in a two-month period,” said Taproot Church pastor Dan Braga, who watched the whole thing from the adjacent suburb…


To read the rest of this article, visit https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/seattle-reboot-life-after-mars-hill.