In the latest Craft & Character podcast, Steve Carter talks with Eastside Christian Church senior pastor Gene Appel about effective leadership through preaching. Gene is an incredible mix of strategic leader and kind pastor, and he leads with integrity. He refers to this mix of strategy as “directional leadership” and explains that his goal of shepherding his congregation influences both his message preparation and his sermon calendar. Gene’s clarity of mission plays a key role in moving the Church forward.
Who is Gene Appel?
In 1980 Gene Appel left central Illinois for Southern California to begin an internship at Eastside Christian Church in Anaheim. That internship would pave the way for full-time ministry. Gene served as senior pastor at Central Christian Church in Las Vegas for 18 years and as lead pastor of Willow Creek’s South Barrington, Illinois, campus for 5 years. For the last 12 years, he’s been right back where he started—Eastside Christian Church. Gene is deeply respected for his leadership, church strategies, and pastor’s heart.
Eastside’s multiple campuses in the Anaheim, California, area have seen remarkable growth since Gene’s return. Today, their vision is to reach 1 percent of the 5.8 million people who live within 20 miles of their hub campus.