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Kim Emch ~ Executive Director ~ SON Ministries, Hilliard

“City Vision has been integral in my personal growth in urban ministry.  The Community Partner meetings have opened my eyes and introduced me to other servants around our city who love the poor.  Through these relationships I’ve grown in my faith and expanded the resources I can offer those I serve.  When I began a non-profit ministry, Jim served me in a leadership capacity, as an apostle and coach.  His wisdom, guidance and experience along with his love for the Lord, have made a profound impact on me personally and has helped the ministry I serve move forward.”

Allison Rooney ~ Director of Programs ~ SON Ministries, Hilliard
“City Vision is such a valuable resource to Serving Our Neighbors (SON) Ministries as a faith-based Christian non profit and ministry. Through City Vision partner meetings I have been inspired and fed by the opportunity to share what God is doing throughout Columbus to mobilize the Body of Christ, as we love, walk beside and empower the poor in our midst. KJ and Jim Swearingen’s leadership, vast experience and love for the Lord are foundational for us as a young non profit called to do God’s work with the poor in our suburban community. Praise God – I have learned so much and SON Ministries has prospered greatly through our partnership with City Vision.”

Cathy Alexander ~ Development Director ~ Urban Connections, Columbus
“City Vision supports ministries so that we can support our neighborhoods of need. Urban Connections has benefitted from City Vision networking, advice and trainings, but also connections to interns, potential staff, mission teams, and resources. Our entire neighborhood benefits when we are trained well, encouraged and refreshed by connections with other Christian community developers. Thanks to our connection with City Vision and the love and support of Jim & KJ, UC has been allowed to grow closer to our vision of a wholistically transformed community.”

Aaron Starr ~ Director ~ Reaching the Nations International, Columbus
“Over the years, Jim and KJ have added value to the ministry of RTNI in several ways.  In the early years they were instrumental in connecting us to a larger network of likeminded people and ministries (both locally and nationally) so that we did not feel like we were doing urban ministry alone.  They continue to provide resources to us  - and other urban ministries – in the way of volunteer connections and training opportunities.  They are a source of encouragement when ministry is hard and are willing to be a sounding board for new ideas.  It is nice to be able to go to people with so much rounded urban ministry experience!”

Andy Batten ~ Director ~ Lighthouse, Inc., Cleveland and Columbus
“Wow, we have come a long way these past few years and City Vision was a big part of getting started.  Jim saw the potential in us when others did not have the time.  City Vision helped us ask the tough questions that answered who we were, and what is it that we wanted to do, with that clarity we were able to focus on who we wanted to be and how we wanted to behave.  This was a key for us making the right first moves and everything else that has followed has been much better because we started out right.”

Jeffrey Mansell ~ Executive Director ~ Seven Baskets, Columbus
City Vision and the work of Jim and KJ Swearingen have been instrumental to the initial success of our new community development organization. Their experience and wisdom have provided needed assistance in areas unfamiliar to myself. Their networking efforts have been beneficial in surrounding me with persons who share a common mission to reach the under-served in the name of Jesus. God has been very gracious to Seven Baskets in strategically placing people in our lives who can help us navigate new territory. Jim and KJ are at the top of that list.

Chris Zeidner ~ Community Development Director  ~ Linden Life, Columbus
“I have been involved in various capacities in inner city ministry since the late 1980′s. 14 years ago I was involved in helping to launch C.R.A.C.K. House Ministries (CHM), which serves recovering alcoholics. In 2008 I left full time secular employment to serve as Operations Director and then Executive Director of CHM and now I am on the leadership team with Linden Life.  In seeking to improve our outcomes and expand our impact, City Vision has been an invaluable resource to me through the connections I made, the experiences of other ministries I could directly benefit from, and from Jim and KJ’s wisdom and insights that they freely shared with me and with my fellow workers. City Vision’s mission and impact are a great resource for those of us seeking to serve our city.”

Ben Douglass ~ Associate Pastor ?~ Faith Community Alliance Church, Columbus
“We (Faith Community Church) are very thankful for the trainings that City Vision coordinates which help us develop our neighborhood based leaders and give them a vision for where we can go together in the future. We are thankful for the hard and thankless work that Jim and KJ put in behind the scenes.”

Brian Stone ~ Director ~ Cross Town Kids, Columbus
“The coaching provided by Jim and KJ was exceptional! What a valuable resource they are to those who are seeking to impact their city for Christ. Our consultation with Jim and KJ yielded practical resources, experienced insight and spiritual encouragement. I would highly recommend tapping into their real world know-how, expertise and passion for reaching urban America. ”

Amy Byler ~ Director of Serve Cbus ~ Veritas Community Church, Columbus
“As a church, our desire is to build Gospel-centered partnerships within our city and effectively love our neighbors. City Vision has served as an excellent catalyst to make that happen. Because of connections made within City Vision,  Veritas has been able to form many valuable community partnerships and share resources within our neighborhoods.”

Scott Brown ~ Board Member ~ City Vision, Columbus
“Jim and KJ have a lifetime of passionate service and demonstrated results in establishing and assisting inner city ministries that glorify God.  Initially through Urban Concern in Columbus, which they started in 1989 and continues to be a thriving ministry.  And then through City Vision, where since 2004, they directed the Buffalo Christian Center, started a Home Church in Buffalo, and connected and strengthened other community development ministries in Buffalo, Columbus, Cleveland, and other cities.”

A Vision As Big As The City!

After raising my family in South Linden and doing inner city ministry there for fifteen years, I saw God work incredible miracles:

  • Hundreds of kids began a relationship with Christ.
  • Major crimes went down over 40% in our targeted area.
  • The cycle of poverty is being broken in the lives of so many as kids as they graduate from high school and get jobs rather than going to jail.
  • The value of marriage is embraced by many couples making marriage commitments.
  • People from the community have become leaders in transforming the community.
  • People are moving to the community rather than fleeing from it.

I believe these same miracles could transform other high crime and impoverished neighborhoods in our city (and other cities) if the Church would mobilize their people in unity across the racial and class barriers.

City Vision exists to ignite a movement of community transformation. I invite you to become part of this movement by contacting Jim via the
contact form.