Downtown Teams Breakfast Drop Throughout the East Village and Skywalks

Teams provided free breakfast throughout the downtown skywalks and the East Village.

Walnut Creek Downtown teams kicked off Mission to the City with breakfast drops on early Friday morning.

Windsor Heights Teams Deliver Meals to Local Schools


The kitchen was busy all Friday morning with chopping, baking, and mixing as Mission to the City groups from Windsor Heights prepared meals for various organizations throughout the city.

One Community Group brought a meal to the teachers and staff at Harding Middle School as a way to thank the teachers for their hard work. Their Community Group works closely with many Harding students through Youth For Christ, a ministry for middle school and high school youth. Another Community Group prepared a meal for Des Moines Christian School and blessed the elementary education department on their last day of the school year.

M2TC teams served lunches to teachers at Des Moines Christian School and Harding Middle School. 

The biggest helpers were the littlest ones of the crew. A team of moms and their kids made homemade cards and multiple meals for the Ronald McDonald House, which provides comfort and care to sick children and their families.

Kids got in on the Mission to the City action, too. 

Throughout the morning, various teams also made coffee and smoothie runs to local businesses in the Windsor Heights area by blessing workers with a free morning pick-me-up.

Teams made free coffee runs to local businesses. 

Shalom Spends a Day at the Ballpark for Mission to the City


On Saturday, twenty-five people from the Shalom congregation made their way out to Johnston Little League to serve the community. A group of people put new siding on a building and another group scraped benches and gave them a fresh coat of paint. It was encouraging to see so many people take time out of their Saturday to help the community as well as seeing all ages get involved with the process of m2tc. We pray that the Des Moines area is blessed and that God is glorified through our labor!

By Melissa Holle
Walnut Creek Downtown

Pancake Brunch Raises Money for Operation Christmas Child

The smell of hot pancakes hung heavy in the air after the Sunday morning church service at Walnut Creek Downtown on May 29. The pancakes did more than fill hungry bellies after church. Part of Mission to the City for the third year in a row, the pancake brunch raised nearly $700 for Operation Christmas Child (OCC).

Since 1993, OCC – a ministry of Samaritan’s Purse – has delivered gift-filled shoeboxes to over 124 million children affected by war, poverty, natural disasters, and other crises in more than 150 countries and territories. OCC partners with local churches to share the Good News of Jesus Christ with those who receive shoebox gifts. A 12-lesson discipleship program, The Greatest Journey, helps boys and girls learn what it means to follow the Lord and share their faith with others.
The pancake brunch isn’t the only OCC-related Mission to the City project happening this year. Several groups went to the Urbandale home of Central Iowa OCC volunteer to pack shoebox gifts and do other volunteer work.

On July 8, Walnut Creek Church will host the sixth annual Christmas in July party, an OCC shoebox packing party for the whole family. Like last year, our goal will be to pack 2,000 shoebox gifts and raise $14,000 to cover the shipping costs. An anonymous $7,000 donation has already been pledged to the cause.

By Tim Laehn
Walnut Creek Downtown

Walnut Creek Church Volunteers Roll Up Their Sleeves for Freedom for Youth

Roots run deep for Walnut Creek Church and Freedom for Youth Ministries in more ways than one. Members served the organization by pulling up weeds, planting flowers, and trimming landscaping Saturday during Mission to the City as part of an ongoing effort to support the ministry’s staff and volunteers.

Ashlie Baldwin, Job Coach at Freedom for Youth, is also a member of Walnut Creek Downtown and joined her community group Saturday at their main location and Safe Haven, one of Freedom’s residential programs. Ashlie’s primary role consists of coaching participants ages 18-22 involved in the residential training program. While many of the participants and volunteers at Freedom take on various responsibilities, she was blessed by the opportunity for her community group to help shoulder the burden of much of the manual landscaping labor, as the participants often assist in maintaining the facilities and various job training activities.

“We only have about three young adults in our transitions program right now, but if you could imagine all that [work] being done by three young adults and then myself, all that weed-pulling, mowing, even more things that we didn’t even get done today. That would generally be done from nine to noon, so you can imagine that the work is long and it takes a long time to get done. You’ve served the staff, young adults, and many other things in the program.”

Ashlie says the relationship with Freedom and Walnut Creek has been consistent since she started about four years ago, and is thankful that every Mission to the City brings a new opportunity to strengthen the relationship.

“Walnut Creek has been really faithful to Freedom for Youth. The church has been very good about helping the young adults get connected with community groups. Walnut Creek has also been loving and accepting and stepped in, either financially or with discipleship.”

By Noelle Thompson
Walnut Creek Downtown

Kicking Off Mission to the City 2016

During Mission to the City, members of Walnut Creek Church set aside their busy schedules for a few days—serving Greater Des Moines with thousands of hours of community service.

Walnut Creek is about to begin one of the busiest weekends of the year. For the past few months we have been organizing, planning, and praying for these next four days. Over four hundred people have committed to love and serve the city of Des Moines with hundreds of hours of labor.

So what is Mission to the City about?

This weekend isn't all about us. It’s not even about our church. It's about the Father who made us, the Son who saved us, and the Holy Spirit who empowers us.

God exists in perfect community with Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Love is the essence of their relationship, manifested in their mutual giving of service, honor, joy, and glory to one another.

Though Jesus is fully God, He willingly gave His life in full submission to honor His Father. He came to earth to serve and to display His Father’s love. Service is an integral part of God’s relational nature and our relationship with Him.

God says now we are His ambassadors to the world. He has entrusted us to display the Good News. Jesus prayed that the world would know God’s love through the ways we, as believers, love one another. That love is what this weekend is all about.

God has given Jesus the authority to send us to continue His mission. And so filled with the Spirit, we go to the city. Over the next four days we will be serving non-profits, businesses, schools, churches, and neighbors:

These are just some of the organizations, businesses, schools, and churches we will serve. 

Join us tonight at Walnut Creek Downtown for an evening of worship and prayer as we kickoff Mission to the City. Registration will be open from 6–7 p.m. for people to check-in and get their t-shirt. We'll begin the night with worship at 7 p.m.

For more information about Mission to the City and to register, visit

Walnut Creek Highland Park Hosts First Service In New Building

Walnut Creek Church was planted in 1984 when a group of people from our sister church in Ames (Stonebrook Community Church), moved to Des Moines and began meeting together in homes. In 1991, we purchased our first church building in Windsor Heights. Nearly ten years later in March 2000 we held our first satellite location in an elementary school in Waukee. 

The location was later moved to Horizon Elementary School in Johnston, becoming Walnut Creek Johnston. After growing and serving together there for the last 15 years, the congregation is ready to follow God's leading to a new place: the Highland Park neighborhood on the north side of Des Moines.

Walnut Creek Highland Park met for the first time in their new building this past weekend, May 1. "This Sunday was very encouraging after spending so many weeks in the planning process. Last week a lot of people put in hours cleaning, painting, and transforming the main level," said Pastor Bob Joy. 

Highland Park 2
Walnut Creek Highland Park is sharing the building with Stover Memorial Church of the Brethren.

Walnut Creek Highland Park is sharing the building with Stover Memorial Church of the Brethren, who have been in the building for 70 years. 

"God answered our prayers with this new 24/7 location. We're really excited because God has opened up doors for us to be in a new building where we can love and serve and minister the Gospel seven days a week," said Pastor Joel Swanson. 

Walnut Creek Johnston met in Horizon Elementary School on Sunday mornings for 15 years.
Walnut Creek Highland Park is located on the corner of 6th Avenue and Shawnee Avenue. They meet on Sunday mornings at 9:30 a.m. and welcome everyone to come check out their new location. 

"We're looking forward to the opportunity to let the neighborhood know we're here to serve and to love," said Joel. "We have experienced a new vitality as a body through this process. They're bringing life to this place."