PARADIGM SHIFT | “A CHANGE IN APPROACH OR ASSUMPTIONS”

Paradigm Shift is all about reaching people who are not currently being reached through traditional models of ministry. Our roots stretch back to the Muscular Christianity Movement of the late 1800’s and continue today as we reach out through both community outreach and social media. We call ourselves ‘church on the go’, and we believe the timeless truth of who Jesus is and what He came to do is still vitally important as we live our daily lives. If the Christian faith is a living faith, then what we believe should affect the way we live. Together, we can change this world for the better!

OUR VISION | “REIMAGINING AND REIGNITING THE LOCAL CHURCH”

We define the Church as the universal body of believers, and we define the local church as any gathering of Christians who are committed to pray, grow and serve together in their community. We believe the local church exists to do ministry and is intrinsically connected to the Church universal by the unity of the Holy Spirit.

Reimagining the local church

We believe the local church to be a family rather than a membership club or an institution. As brothers and sisters in Christ, we are called to pray, grow and serve together in our respective communities.

“And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers…” Acts 2:42

Reigniting the local church

A community is only as strong as the faith of the people who live there. If we want our local churches to make a difference, we must begin by reigniting the passion in our hearts as we follow the living Christ.

“And you shall love the Lord our God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength…” Mark 12:30

OUR MISSION | “PRAY, GROW AND SERVE TOGETHER”

PRAY to the Father

“I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth.” – Apostles’ Creed

We believe the first mission of the Church is to seek the will of our Heavenly Father by committing ourselves to living lives of prayer and worship in order to honor His name.

“I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.” – Romans 12:1

“PRAY then like this: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name…” – Matthew 6:9

GROW in the Son

“I believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried; he descended into hell. On the third day he rose again; he ascended into heaven, he is seated at the right hand of the Father, and he will come to judge the living and the dead.” – Apostles’ Creed

We believe the second mission of the Church is to equip the saints for ministry by making disciples of all nations through baptism and biblical teaching as commissioned by Jesus.

“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” – Matthew 28:19-20

“Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to GROW up in every way into him who is the head…” – Ephesians 4:15

SERVE with the Spirit

“I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting.” – Apostles’ Creed

We believe the third mission of the Church is to serve the surrounding community by putting into practice our God given gifts and to pursue our individual and collective callings as revealed to us by the Holy Spirit.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.” – Galatians 5:22-23

“As each has received a gift, use it to SERVE one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace…” – 1 Peter 4:10

OUR METHODOLOGY | REACH -> CONNECT -> TRANSFORM -> INSPIRE

“Reach” [v. reech] to stretch, to strive for, to move from your comfort zone.

Outreach and evangelism are at the heart of the Christian faith. Jesus set the example of meeting people where they are by taking on flesh and walking among us. We are called to be the light of the world and the salt of the earth, but we cannot do that if we are not willing to move beyond our four walls.

“And the Word became flesh dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.” – John 1:14

“Connect” [v. kuh-nekt] to come together, to unite, to become one body.

The Church can best be defined as a family, as we are all brothers and sisters in Christ. As we come together in common mission, we begin to break down the walls we have allowed to divide us. If prejudice is born out of ignorance, then perhaps grace rise from a unified heart for our Savior.

“For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body though many, are one body, so it is with Christ.” – 1 Corinthians 12:12

“Transform” [v. trans-fawrm] to change, to grow, to be made new.

Without intentional fellowship and discipleship, very few of us would choose spiritual discipline over worldly pleasures. If we want our lives to have meaning, then we must submit to the will of our Heavenly Father by allowing our hearts to be transformed by the Holy Spirit.

“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect” – Romans 12:2

“Inspire” [v. in-spahyuhr] to be given vision, to be set free.

Each one of us has been created, called and commissioned both on purpose and for a purpose. If we want to see this world changed for the better, then we must use our talents, gifts and passions to inspire the people in our lives to join us in following Christ.

“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10

OUR CORE VALUES | “PUTTING FAITH INTO ACTION”

Personal Commitment

Your faith journey begins when you accept Jesus as Lord and Savior. Salvation requires a personal commitment to live as an ambassador of Christ, to represent Him and His interests wherever you go.

“Because if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” – Romans 10:9

Water Baptism

Once you have committed your life to Christ, the next step is to be baptized by water. Water baptism symbolizes dying to this world and being made alive in Christ. This act publicly announces you as a member of the Church.

“We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.” – Romans 6:4

Communion

Communion is both about celebrating the Lord’s Supper and gathering together on a weekly basis to worship our Lord. The act of communion is about remembering the bittersweet sacrifice Jesus made for us on the cross.

“And he took bread and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, ‘This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.’ And likewise the cup after they had eaten saying, ‘This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood.’” – Luke 22:19-20

Marriage & Family

Christian marriage is a sacred covenant between one man and one woman before God. Christian marriage requires mutual love and sacrifice as exemplified by the Triune God. The bride and the groom become one as the Father, Son and Spirit are one.

“Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” – Genesis 2:24

All children, from the time of conception, are gifts from God and therefore become our responsibility to protect, to provide for and to love. We are called to love all children with the same unconditional love our Heavenly Father has for us.

“For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.” – Psalm 139:13-14

“Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them!.” – Psalm 127:3-5

Ministry & Calling

Each and every one of us has been created, called and commissioned both on purpose and for a purpose. We (the Church) are God’s chosen method of leading people to salvation. We must seek His will or our lives so we can fulfill both our individual and collective callings.

“And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ.” – Ephesians 4:11-12

“But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.” – 1 Peter 2:9-10

OUR HISTORY | “FROM 1896 TO TODAY”

Our Roots (1896 – 2004)

The roots of Paradigm Shift Ministries (PSM) stretch back over 120 years. During the Muscular Christianity Movement of the late 1800’s, the local YMCA in Erie, Pennsylvania established what became known as the Erie County Church Athletic Association (E.C.C.A.A.). The E.C.C.A.A. administered competitive leagues across multiple ages and sports. This led to a rich intergenerational history of those who had represented their churches and neighborhoods on the field of play.

It was this league future Paradigm Shift Ministries co-founder Dustin Craig was invited to play in shortly after moving to Erie in 1998.

Our Foundation (2005 – 2007)

In the fall of 2004, the YMCA decided to decommission the E.C.C.A.A. Instead of telling people the program was going away, the outgoing league director began to direct phone calls to future Paradigm Shift co-founder Tony Craig (since he was one of the more vocal church representatives). Representatives from seventeen local congregations gathered together to preserve the 100+ year heritage of ‘church league basketball,’ which continued play for several years, nearly tripling in size to become the largest youth basketball program in Northwestern Pennsylvania.

On October 28, 2005, Tony helped a group of students form a band to lead worship at a regional youth retreat, calling themselves the Created… Music Project. The group saw students come and go, playing wherever they could.

Also during this time, Dustin enrolled at Malone University (then Malone College) to study youth and sports ministry with minors in coaching and sport management.

Our Transformation (2008 – 2013)

In December 2007, Erie church league basketball coaches and representatives decided their program needed to evolve into a true sports outreach program rather than simply a recreational league for current Sunday school students and called on Dustin to be its chaplain.

In 2009, Dustin was invited to speak at the annual Christian Society of Kinesiology and Leisure Studies (CSKLS) on the topic of ‘Bodily Stewardship’ at the University of Ottawa. That same year, he traveled to Honduras in partnership with Scripture Union(Canada/Honduras) and Athletes in Action (Honduras) in order to train local pastors and to establish a church sponsored community soccer program. In 2010, Dustin launched a summer sports camp program for a church in Alexandria Bay, New York. In 2012, he helped to architect a national sports ministry tournament in partnership with the Association of Church Sports and Recreation Ministers (CSRM).

During this time, the Created… Music Project continued to play. Since its first concert, over 70 youth, young adults and some not-so-young adults have played everywhere from soup kitchens to sports stadiums spreading the message that we have all been created for a reason.

Through these experiences, it was realized that in order for sports and music outreach to effect real and lasting change in a community, it must be fully integrated with a local church. This led to the creation of what would be called Paradigm Shift Ministries, which began as a dorm room project in 2009 and took until 2013 to be defined to a point Dustin and Tony felt compelled to create a legally recognized organization.

NOTE: The term Paradigm Shift came from a song written by Dustin called “River Stone”, which describes God’s love breaking down the hardest of hearts like the river erodes the stones in the riverbed. The chorus states: “It’s a paradigm shift, it can take time or be quick. The change will be your own, just like the river stone.”

Our Future (2014 – Present)

During the summer of 2013, the Craig’s moved their base of operations to Marion, Ohio and finalized what this new kind of organization would look like, and to create a not-for-profit corporation (designated as a church in the state of Ohio) to serve as the legal structure for its ministries. Papers were signed in January 2014 to christen Paradigm Shift Ministries, Inc.

Six Thirty Saturday Nite (#630SN) was soft-launched at The Haven on Vine Bed & Breakfast in Marion on November 29, 2014 and began broadcasting live via Periscope on May 30, 2015. Live streaming extended to FacebookTwitter and YouTube in 2016, adding Instagram in 2017.

On May 19, 2015, PSM announced the purchase of The Haven on Vine, which provides a unique addition to the ministries of Paradigm Shift, providing facilities for worship as well as offices, meeting spaces, studio and retreat center.

The Created… Music Project continues to play as the house band for #630SN and performs frequently at community events. The band won the Mid-Ohio’s Got Talent contest in the summer of 2015 and was invited to audition for America’s Got Talent in November 2015.

SOCIAL MEDIA | “LET”S GET CONNECTED!”

Paradigm Shift Ministries, Inc.

Paradigm Shift Ministries is church for people on the go. Our mission is to empower people to pray, grow and serve together both online and in the community.

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Created… Music Project

The Created… Music Project is a Christian rock band founded in 2005 by a bunch of high school kids and their youth leader. Over 70 youth, young adults and not so young adults have played everywhere from soup kitchens to sports stadiums. Created… now serves as the house band for Paradigm Shift’s weekly #630SN service.

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The Haven on Vine

The Haven on Vine was built in 1842 and was designed to serve as a station on the Underground Railroad and was converted into a bed and breakfast in 2011. Since 2014, The Haven has served as home for Paradigm Shift’s weekly #630SN service.

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Dustin Craig (Lead Pastor)

Dustin accepted the call to go into ministry at the age of sixteen while he was serving as a student ambassador in Europe. After walking the old battlefields and touring the empty cathedrals, he gave his life over to the biggest cause he could think of – the kingdom of God. Since then, he attended Malone University’s School of Theology and earned his bachelor’s of arts in Youth and Sports Ministry with minors in Sports Management and Coaching. Dustin has also been recognized internationally as a student, athlete and ministry leader. He has worked directly with nearly 300 churches putting together outreach events and his current #630SN video series has been viewed by people in over 80 countries and territories.

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Tony Craig (Executive Director)

Tony has been an innovator in both the business and ministry worlds. He attended the University of Cincinnati’s College of Business and College Conservatory of Music before entering into business. His career includes overseeing the daily balance clearinghouse banks, writing policy and procedures, managing corporate communications and developing both intranet and internet databases. Tony has written reports to members of Congress on customer satisfaction and launched the first start-up to ever be featured on the cover of US Business Review magazine. Outside of his business interests, he also has experience in non-profit board management, staff-parish relations, youth ministry, sports ministry and music ministry.

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