Darren Lander - Senior Pastor
Brought up in a Christian family, Darren responded early in life to a presentation of the gospel by placing his confidence in what Jesus had done to save him. As an older teenager, God developed in him both a conviction for his sinful tendencies and a strong hope in God’s redeeming plan for his future.
Darren attended a Bible college in the suburbs of Philadelphia where he also received a MS in Christian Counseling. He taught for ten years at a private school in the area before heading to the Sovereign Grace Pastor’s College. After graduating he served a one year internship at Sovereign Grace Church where he became a full-time pastor in 2007. Since that time, he has served our church as the pastor for preaching, overseeing community groups, and providing direction for the leadership team.
Darren and his wife Christine live in Olmsted Falls with their four children- Zachary, Zoe, Josiah, and Jace. In his free time, he enjoys evenings at home with his family, tinkering at his latest woodworking project, relaxing with his friends from Middle Earth, steering clear of Starbucks if at all possible, and Car Talk on NPR.
Jonathan Putnam - Associate Pastor
Raised by Christian parents, Jonathan heard the gospel as a child and trusted Christ for the forgiveness of his sins at the age of eight. At the age of fourteen he remembers realizing that life had no purpose, meaning or joy apart from Christ. This led to a growing desire to spend his life for the cause of Christ.
After graduating from The University of Akron with a B.A. in English, Jonathan pursued theological training at Trinity International University where he obtained an M.A. in Religion while interning at the Chapel in Akron, Ohio. After completing the internship in 2005, Jonathan sensed God leading him to move to Cleveland to be a part of Sovereign Grace Church. Four years later he was sent to the Sovereign Grace Ministries Pastor’s College and was ordained as a pastor in November of 2012.
He currently serves as the Associate Pastor, overseeing community and global outreach, discipleship, and children’s ministry.
Favorites include spending time with his family, the Rocky River Reservation, cinnamon rolls from the Breadsmith in Lakewood, volunteering as an ESL tutor, hot and iced Tazo tea, discussing Middle Eastern politics, culture and religion with international friends, and Weekend Edition with Scott Simon on NPR.
Jonathan and his wife, Megan, live in Fairview Park with their young sons, Jude and Elijah.