Grace Church is an authentic community
knowing and making known the love, hope, joy, and freedom of Jesus.

Our Location

We are located in Old Town Fort Collins at 300 Whedbee Street (map) on the corner of E Olive Street.

Our Building

We are located in Old Town Fort Collins at 300 Whedbee Street on the corner of E Olive Street.

Our Vision

Grace Church is an authentic community knowing and making known the love, hope, joy, and freedom of Jesus.

Our Mission

Through a gospel-saturated message, Grace Church will embrace the city and the world with authentic relationships, loving leadership, engaging worship, and a robust world and life view! Listen to our Missions & Vision of Grace Church sermon series.

The Values of Grace Church

Glory of God – God’s glory, not our preferences will govern decisions we make. His beauty, majesty and holiness will overwhelm and govern our decisions and living. We desire to spread His fame in Fort Collins and beyond!

Community – We are connecting with God and each other. We are not solely about the individual, but the body. We must constantly ask if our programming encourages and keeps at the forefront community and relationship!

Outreach/Service – We are moving into, not out of, the city and the world. We are not a fort, but an airport runway. Through the Gospel, God blesses and makes us a blessing. Christ meets our needs so that we may serve God and others.

Passionate Living – We will celebrate what God has done in creation literally eating and drinking to the glory of God! There will be a sense of longing in our midst as we wait for the new heavens and the new earth. Food and drink is never our end, but they are very real means to glorifying and enjoying God not to be neglected!

The Core Hopes of Grace Church

  • That Christ will create us to be a new worshipping community that will experience the grace, joy and freedom of the gospel.
  • That Christ will make us a loving and honest community in which sins are confessed, sinners are accepted and lives are changed through the power of the gospel.
  • That Christ will make us a welcoming community, open to the skeptic, the seeker, the new convert and the struggling Christian.
  • That Christ will make us a serving community that loves Fort Collins to the point of desiring real change through the ministries of word, justice and mercy. That He, in and through us, will meet real needs (spiritual, physical and social) and allow us to experience His life in our midst.
  • That Christ will make us a growing community that establishes other churches in our state and region.
  • That Christ will make us a mission-driven church for the world sending not only our money but also our people out from our midst.

The Beliefs of Grace Church

  • The Bible is the inspired and inerrant Word of God, the only infallible rule of faith and practice.
  • There is one God, eternal and self-existing in three persons (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) who are to be equally loved, honored, and adored.
  • All mankind participated in Adam’s fall from his original sinless state and is thus lost in sin and totally helpless.
  • The Sovereign God, for no other reason than His own unfathomable love and mercy, has chosen lost sinners from every nation to be redeemed by the quickening power of the Holy Spirit and through the atoning death and resurrection of His son, Jesus Christ.
  • Those sinners whom the Spirit quickens, come to believe in Christ as Savior by the Word of God, are born again, become sons of God, and will persevere to the end.
  • Justification is by faith and through it the undeserving sinner is clothed with the righteousness of Christ.
  • The goal of God’s salvation in the life of the Christian is holiness, good works, and service for the glory of God.
  • At death the Christian’s soul passes immediately into the presence of God and the unbeliever’s soul is eternally separated from God unto condemnation.
  • Baptism is a sign of God’s covenant and is properly administered to children of believers in their infancy as well as to those who come as adults to trust in Christ.
  • Jesus Christ will return to earth, visibly and bodily, at a time when He is not expected, to consummate history and the eternal plan of God.
  • The Gospel of God’s salvation in Jesus Christ must be published to all the world as a witness before Jesus Christ returns.

The Gospel is Central

The Impact of the Gospel

The Gospel is…

You are more sinful than you ever dared believe, yet you can be more accepted and loved than you ever dared hope at the same time, because Jesus Christ lived and died in your place.

Salvation is of the Lord (Jonah 2:9)

The irreligious don’t repent at all. The religious only repent of sins. But Christians also repent of their righteousness. Moral and religious people are sorry for their sins, but they see sin as simply the failure to live up to standards by which they are saving themselves. They may go to Jesus for forgiveness-but only as a way to “cover over the gaps” in their project of self-salvation. But a Christian is someone who has adopted a whole new system of approach to God. They realize their entire reason for either irreligion or religion has been essentially the same and essentially wrong! Christians realize that both their sins and their best deeds have all really been ways of avoiding Jesus as savior.

… the way to avoid Jesus was to avoid sin… -Flannery O’Connor

A Christian says: “though I have often failed to obey the law, the deeper problem is why I was ever trying to obey it! Even my effort to obey it is just a way of seeking to be my own savior. In that mindset, even if I obey or ask for forgiveness, I am really resisting the gospel and setting myself up as Savior.” To “get the gospel” is turn from self-justification and rely on Jesus’ record for a relationship with God. “Lay your deadly doing down, down at Jesus’ feet. Stand in Him, in Him alone-gloriously complete.”

The Two “Thieves” of the Gospel – Legalism and Liberalism

Tertullian said, “Just as Christ was crucified between two thieves, so this doctrine of justification is ever crucified between two opposite errors.” These errors continue to “steal” the gospel from us. They are “legalism” and “liberalism”. On the one hand, “legalists” have a truth without grace, for they say or imply that we must obey the truth in order to be saved. On the other hand, “liberals” have a grace without truth, for they say or imply that we are all accepted by God regardless of what we decide is true for us. But those with truth without grace, do not really have the truth, and those with grace without truth, do not really have grace. In Jesus we behold the glory of the one “full of grace and truth”. De-emphasize or lose one or the other of these truths, you fall somewhat into legalism or somewhat into license and you eliminate the joy and the “release” of the gospel. Without knowledge of our extreme sin, the payment of the gospel seems trivial and does not electrify or transform. But without knowledge of Christ’s completely satisfying life and death, the knowledge of sin would crush us or move us to deny and repress it. Take away either the knowledge of sin or the knowledge of grace and people’s lives will not be changed. They will be crushed by the moral law or run from it screaming and angry.

As Luther put it, the Christian is simul justus et peccator (simultaneously accepted, yet a sinner). We are more sinful than we ever dared believe, but through Christ we are more accepted than we ever dared hope. When the gospel dawns on the soul, it becomes a transforming power (Romans 1:17). Instead of seeing the law of God as an abstract moral code, Christians see it as a way to know, serve, and resemble their Master. Instead of obeying to make God indebted to them, they obey because they are indebted to him. Instead of being driven by an anxious sense of being unacceptable, they are empowered by grateful joy. The difference between these two ways of morality could not be greater. Their spirits, goals, motivations, and results are entirely different.

The Impact of the Gospel

One of the basic theological premises of Grace Church is that the gospel can change any one, any place. Part of the driving force behind Grace Church is the conviction that most people have not heard the gospel clearly, whether they have been raised in liberal churches or conservative churches. Many people are on “trajectories” of reaction to either their conservative or their liberal backgrounds or experiences. But the gospel is off the continuum altogether. When people actually hear the gospel, they are surprised and brought up short. There can be neither personal transformation nor social transformation without a grasp of it. The gospel transforms our hearts and thinking and approaches to everything. As you read the following, consider ways that the gospel might transform your ways of thinking through theses areas. Some examples:

Approach to multi-culturalism:

      • The liberal approach is to relativize all cultures.
      • The conservative approach is to idolize some cultures.
      • The gospel of grace leads us to be somewhat critical of all cultures, morally superior to no individual, hopeful about any individual, and respectful and courteous to each individual.

Approach to the poor:

      • The liberal elites tend to scorn the religion of the poor and see them as helpless victims needing their expertise.
      • The conservative elites tend to scorn the poor as failures and weaklings.
      • The gospel of grace leads us to be humble–without moral superiority knowing we were saved by grace, gracious–remembering our former deserved spiritual poverty, and respectful of believing poor Christians as brothers and sisters from whom to learn. The gospel alone can bring “knowledge workers” into a sense of humble respect for and solidarity with the poor.

Approach to difficult emotions:

      • The moralizing say, “You are breaking the rules-repent.”
      • The psychologizing say, “You just need to love and accept yourself.”
      • The gospel leads us to say: “Something in my life has become more important than God, a pseudo-savior, a form of works-righteousness”. The gospel leads us to repentance, but not to merely setting our will against superficialities.

Approach to the physical world:

      • The moralist is afraid of or indifferent to physical pleasure and wholeness, while the hedonist makes it an idol.
      • The gospel leads us to see that God has invented both body and soul and so will redeem both body and soul. Thus the gospel leads us to enjoy the physical and fight against sickness and poverty. This is applied also to sex as well.

Approach to love and relationships:

      • Liberalism reduces love to a negotiated partnership for mutual benefit.
      • Moralism makes relationships into a blame-game and a never ending need to earn our love; often creates “co-dependency”, a form of self-salvation through neediness.
      • The gospel leads us to sacrifice and commitment, but not out of a need to convince ourselves we are acceptable. So we can love the person enough to confront, yet stay with the person when it does not benefit us.

Approach to suffering:

      • Liberalism lays the fault at God’s doorstep, claiming him to be either unjust or impotent.
      • Moralism takes the approach of Job’s friends, laying guilt on yourself. “I must be bad to be suffering.”
      • The gospel shows us that God redeemed us through suffering. That he suffered not that we might not suffer, but that in our suffering we could become like him.

Approach to self-control:

      • Liberalism tells us to express ourselves and find out what is right for us. This is an emotion-based approach.
      • Moralism tells us to control our passions out of fear of punishment. This is a volition-based approach.
      • The gospel tells us the free grace of God, which we cannot lose, “teaches” us to “say no” to our passions (Titus 2:13) if we listen to it. This is a whole-person based approach, starting with the truth descending into the heart.

Approach to ministry in the world:

      • Liberalism tends to emphasize only amelioration of social conditions and minimize the need for repentance and conversion.
      • On the other hand moralism will tend to place all the emphasis on the individual human soul. Moralistic religion will insist on converting others to their faith and church, but will ignore social needs of the broader community.
      • The gospel leads to love which in turn moves us to give our neighbor whatever is needed-conversion or a cup of cold water, evangelism and social concern.

Approach to worship:

    • Liberalism leads to a shallow understanding of “acceptance” without a sense of God’s holiness and can lead to frothy or casual worship. (A sense of neither God’s love nor his holiness leads to a worship service that feels like a committee meeting.)
    • Moralism leads to a dour and somber worship which may be long on dignity but short on joy.
    • But the gospel leads us to see that God is both transcendent yet immanent. His immanence makes his transcendence comforting, while his transcendence makes his immanence amazing. The gospel leads to both awe and intimacy in worship, for the Holy One is now our Father.

Summary

The irreligious don’t repent at all. The religious only repent of sins. But Christians also repent of their righteousness. Moral and religious people are sorry for their sins, but they see sin as simply the failure to live up to standards by which they are saving themselves. They may go to Jesus for forgiveness-but only as a way to “cover over the gaps” in their project of self-salvation. But a Christian is someone who has adopted a whole new system of approach to God. They realize their entire reason for either irreligion or religion has been essentially the same and essentially wrong! Christians realize that both their sins and their best deeds have all really been ways of avoiding Jesus as savior.

… the way to avoid Jesus was to avoid sin… -Flannery O’Connor

A Christian says: “though I have often failed to obey the law, the deeper problem is why I was ever trying to obey it! Even my effort to obey it is just a way of seeking to be my own savior. In that mindset, even if I obey or ask for forgiveness, I am really resisting the gospel and setting myself up as Savior.” To “get the gospel” is turn from self-justification and rely on Jesus’ record for a relationship with God. “Lay your deadly doing down, down at Jesus’ feet. Stand in Him, in Him alone-gloriously complete.”

Our Staff

Rev. Ryan Hughs

Pastor

Ryan and his wife Amy are from New Mexico, went to New Mexico State and attended RUF at NMSU. During their time in that ministry their lives were changed forever by the gospel of Jesus. That good news freed them from guilt and fear and continues to deliver them into the throne room of grace every day. Ryan attended Covenant Theological Seminary in St. Louis, Missouri in order to pursue a call with RUF. The Hughs have been doing campus ministry full-time since 2005 and are excited to minister at Grace Church.  They have three girls – Ava, Jane and Lilly.

Abby Mattson

Youth Ministry Intern

Abby is originally from the Seattle area and moved to Colorado in January 2018. She grew up in the church, playing sports and spending time with family and friends. After she graduated high school in 2014, she moved to Ventura, California where she studied theology for two years. After leaving California she moved back to Washington and worked at Starbucks while taking care of her parents who suffer with health issues. After a year of waiting and praying, Abby made the move to Colorado and has not regretted it! She is at such peace being where she knows God wants her and is loving the Colorado culture. When she isn’t working at Starbucks or with the youth of Grace she loves thrift shoppping, soaking up the sun outside, coffee, and good food. Abby married Ethan in June 2019 and they make their home in Loveland.

Kelsey Schnoor

Children’s Director

Kelsey grew up in Fort Collins, and moved back in 2016 with her husband, Eli. She has two children, Oliver and Zoe. She graduated from Colorado Mesa University with her Bachelors in Exercise Science. While at CMU she competed in cross country, Nordic skiing and track and field. Along with being involved in Children’s Ministry here at Grace, she also teaches fitness classes for HealthFitness. She loves running, hiking, gardening and spending time with her family.

Dan Delaney

Music Director
Dan and Brooke Delaney were married in Greeley in 2004 after Dan finished his music degree at UNC and Brooke her religion degree at Whitworth College in Spokane, WA. Since then Dan has completed a masters degree in music from Mannes College of Music in New York City, and Brooke her masters degree from Westminster Seminary in Philadelphia. Dan has worked as a professional freelance musician as well as for several different churches, and Brooke has worked primarily for Harvest USA. Colette was born in 2013, loves books and Star Wars and is full of crazy, joyful zeal for life. Dan and Brooke both love movies, craft beer, nature and knowing people deeply.

Stephanie Mikkelsen

Office Administrator
&
Wedding Coordinator
Stephanie is the Office Administrator and Wedding Coordinator at Grace Church. Stephanie grew up in Greenville, South Carolina, lived and worked as an interpreter for the deaf in San Antonio, TX for two years and moved to Fort Collins in 1995. She has been married to Doug since 1994 and they have five children. Stephanie loves camping with her family, a good cup of coffee, a thoughtful quote, and flourless chocolate cake.

Our Elders

The Session meets on the third Friday of each month, at 7:30 AM at Grace. These meetings are open for members to attend. If a member would like to bring something to the Session’s attention, contact Ryan or Glenn ahead of time to be placed on the agenda.

To contact our elders, please send an email to info@gracefc.net.

Jon Hoppin

Elder

Glenn Nelson

Elder

Darris Stauffer

Elder

Bruce Jenkins

Elder

Kevin Simmons

Elder

Kevin Follet

Elder