Join the River


Become a Partner (our version of membership) and share in a sense of ownership at The River.

We’re glad you’re interested in learning more about Partnership! At The River, "Partnership" is our version of what has traditionally been termed church "membership." We intentionally use the term “partnership” because it implies a more active and mutual relationship. 

Why Partnership?
View this short video by Pastor Brad about why we believe partnership at The River is an important part of the spiritual journey.

Why become a Partner?

The best things in spiritual community happen in the places where we become family to one another. That’s how we view Partnership—where we shape values and embrace a future together.

In the first chapter of the book of Philippians, Paul thanks the Philippians for their partnership in the gospel. In the ancient culture, partnership meant “all in”—all of my best energies and all of my resources—to accomplish a high goal. It spoke of deep affection for one another. At The River, we place a high value on people forming lasting bonds of love and kindness with one another—difficult to achieve in our individualistic and consumeristic culture, but entirely possible within in the the loving and challenging bonds of partnership.

How do I become a River Partner?

If you are interested in becoming a River Partner for the first time, the process is to:

  1. Attend River 101, a two-week class offered twice a year (usually in Spring and Fall) where you can learn about The River’s vision, core values, and ways to find a place of belonging and service at The River.
  2. Meet one-on-one with a River leader who can help you get integrated into our community.
  3. Find a relational circle where you can belong. (e.g. a small group or a ministry team)
  4. Find a place of regular serving in our church.
  5. Complete a Partnership application and submit by January 1st of the year in which you are seeking Partnership. (Here is a sample for reference.)
  6. Meet with a River pastor or board member.
  7. Attend a New River Partner Gathering (February).
  8. Attend the Winter Partnership Meeting in March and sign the Partnership Covenant (annual renewal).
  9. Attend the Annual Partnership Voting Meeting in September.

If you are interested in becoming a River Partner and would like to be notified when the next River 101 class begins, please e-mail

If you are currently a River Partner, the process for annually renewing your Partnership is to:

  1. Attend the two Partnership gatherings in March and September
  2. Sign the Partnership Covenant annually (we do this together at our March gathering)
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