La Grande, OR

If you're not from La Grande here's a brief description of the city we love.

La Grande sits on the western edge of the Grande Ronde Valley at the base of the Blue Mountains in NE Oregon. In many ways it is a small town in the nostalgic sort of way. A broad downtown parallels the Union Pacific rail yard. Coffee shops and outdoor stores and local restaurants in old brick buildings insist on a slower pace. Eastern Oregon University sits a few blocks up the hill bringing students from across the eastern side of the state and many from the west. The surrounding hills, rivers, and lakes boast world class hunting and fishing while the Eagle Cap Wilderness in the heart of the Wallowa Mountains beckons. This is rural living at it's finest.

La Grande itself is home to around 14k residents but it serves as the hub for the Grande Ronde Valley drawing on another 10k some people from surrounding communities like North Powder, Cove, Union, Imbler, and Summerville. Because it's nearly an hour through the mountains on I-84 in either direction to Pendleton or Baker City, residents to the north in towns like Elgin, Enterprise, and Joseph will likely travel to La Grande for food and entertainment. 

Historically "small town America" has been considered "reached" by evangelical missiologists. The number of churches per capita in smaller cities seem to support that assumption but more than two-thirds of Union County residents claim no religious affiliation at all. EOU adds a type of vitality to a small town but it brings secular influence that must be evangelized rather than overlooked. Geographical location has taken it's toll as well. La Grande sits at a comfortable stopping distance from Portland for drug traffic pushing eastward along the Interstate.

There is still need for more Gospel preaching churches in small towns like La Grande. This has become a city we love and has always been a city God loves. By His grace Christ Church aims to be a beacon for the Gospel of Jesus and thriving environment for discipleship.

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