Rachel Ross pastors a thriving church in Jackson, Michigan, The Assembly. She and her congregation are pushing out the edges in what it looks like to recognize Kingdom authority in each believer, honor the five fold model of ministry, and make disciples through raising up powerful people in their spheres of influence rather than primarily making disciples through attracting people to a Sunday gathering (not that they shouldn’t gather…it’s just not the first thing). The Assembly is in the beginning phases of additional church planting (first focus: Plymouth, Michigan), sending out their first missionaries (Troy and Rachel Heselschwerdt,, and developing an in-house discipleship model that is secondarily informational and primarily relational.

Flannery O’Connor, day long strategy games, C.S. Lewis, really good popcorn, British murder mysteries, discovering looney selfies of her sons on her phone, mastering obscure French recipes, and family jaunts to Lake Michigan get Rachel’s juices flowing.

If Rachel could only make four recommendations for music, teaching, food, and books…they would look something like this…

Dustin O’Halloran (Runner)
Liz Vice (Abide)
Gershwin (Rhapsody…I’m sorry, but it needs to be said)
David Hill & Westminster Cathedral Choir (Missa O Magnum Mysterium)

Tim Keller
Bill Johnson
Matt Chandler
Mark Driscoll (yes…I’m still listening)

Beef Wellington (sans pate foie gras, add mushrooms duxelles)
Hazelnut Crepe Cake
Shrimp Dumplings with a simple Aioli
Any Ethiopian Food

(a little mix of right now and all time favs)
Permanent Revolution – Alan Hirsch
Building Kingdom Movements – Mike Breen
Till We Have Faces – C.S. Lewis
Man’s Search for Meaning – Viktor Frankl

Rachel resides in Michigan Center, Michigan with her husband, Mitch and their three boys Luke (10), Maximus (7), and Dane Atticus (5).


I’m excited about recommending Rachel Ross and the blog/Facebook group for women who are serving as lead pastors. Rachel is an incredible pastor who God is using to build a great church. She is bright, articulate, innovative and effective. She is a prime example of a healthy pastor balancing her spiritual leadership, family and personal life. I highly endorse her and this forum. It is an idea that has been needed for a long time.

-Rev. Bill Leach,
Supt. Michigan District of the Assemblies of God

As an observer of Pastor Rachel Ross from childhood to the present, I have been made increasingly aware that she is genuinely a gift to the Church. She brings a balanced blend of high energy, insight into the human drama of life, a solid biblical theology, superb organizational skills and an engaging personality. While all of these serve Pastor Ross well in her roll of pastoring the church, none match her compassionate heart for for the hurting and the lost – the good – the bad – the ugly. In a complicated world where the role of pastor is being increasingly redefined, it is good to know someone who gets it…Pastor Ross “gets it”.

-Mike McClaflin,
AG World Missions Regional Director for Africa (ret.)

boys lifting weights together
Muscular Faith

How silly it would be to lift a five pound weight once, and then to be disappointed in the coming week…