Dennis Gingerich is the Husband of Linda 43+ yrs., a Dad x3, Grandpa x5, Founding Pastor at Cape Christian, Baton-Passing Legacy-Leaving Leader, Blogger, Police Chaplain, Successions Consultant and Professional Nature Photographer.
BACKGROUND – Dennis was born in Salem, Oregon where he grew up on a grass seed farm. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Work and Bible and a Master of Divinity degree at Eastern Mennonite Seminary in 1979. After pastoring in Elmira, NY from 1979 to 1986, he moved his family to Cape Coral, FL to lead a team of six to launch the city’s first contemporary worship-style church, Cape Christian Fellowship in 1987. Now, worship attendance in four services each weekend, is approaching 3,000.
FAMILY – Dennis married Linda Augsburger in 1974 and she has been a vital part of starting and growing Cape Christian Fellowship. Professionally, Linda is a Registered Nurse, working in Labor and Delivery at Cape Coral Hospital since 1989. She has written a course, Parenting on Purpose, that she teaches to young parents.
Dennis and Linda have three adult married children who live in Fort Myers, Tampa and Jacksonville. Their oldest granddaughters are 12 and 8. Their two middle grandchildren are twins, a boy and a girl, born in July 2013. And a fifth grandchild, a girl, was born in June 2018.
INTERESTS – Dennis and Linda love to travel. During May through August 2014, they were awarded a fully-funded four-month sabbatical through the Lilly Endowment Grant administered by the National Clergy Renewal Program. You guessed it. Their sabbatical included lots of travel — six weeks in Europe and eleven weeks on a road trip across North America. Since 1997, they have been leading tour groups to experience the delights of following the steps of Jesus in Israel, Apostle Paul in Greece, Turkey and Rome and of radical church leaders in Germany and Swizterland. See their website, blog and future travel itineraries at Gingerich Tours.
Dennis is highly committed to inspiring successful leadership successions in churches, ministries and businesses. He recently launched Successful Successions to provide a central location for leaders to find encouragement and resources to plan and implement succession plans. Dennis personally designed and led a leadership succession plan at Cape Christian back in the mid-2000’s. Since that time, while remaining on the leadership team as Founding Pastor, Dennis has provided stabilizing leadership during two additional leadership transitions and the church continues to grow, thrive and break all the norms as it constantly reaches unchurched young families in its community.
To relax, Dennis enjoys nature photography. His award-winning images can be enjoyed and purchased at Gingerich PhotoArt or at local gift shops such as Sip and Send Wine & Gifts and Eva By The Sea in Cape Coral or CW Fudge Factory in Matlacha.
COMMUNITY – Beyond his work at Cape Christian, Dennis serves the community. Dennis coached youth soccer for 13 years and has been the lead chaplain for the Cape Coral Police Department since 1996. In addition, he just finished serving 9 years as a board member (and most recently as board chair) for the Cape Coral Community Foundation, is a volunteer with the Eagle Watch program in Cape Coral and loves to mentor community leaders. Dennis was a 2003 finalist for “Citizen of the Year” for Cape Coral and the 2018 recipient of the “Elmer Tabor Generosity Award” which “recognizes outstanding community philanthropists who have a record of exceptional generosity, show civic and charitable responsibility, and demonstrate leadership that inspires others to a life of generosity.”
The mission of Dennis is to inspire transformissional living in others. Dennis has passionately empowered the transformation of young leaders as they discover their calling, develop their character, refine their gifts and intentionally engage in their mission. He also realizes that older adults often coast as they near retirement. In addition, they fear uncharted territory, being irrelevant, or being pushed to the curb by the younger generations. This blog is designed to inspire young and older adults to live with intentionality and leave a significant legacy — honoring the past, celebrating the present with an eager eye toward the future.
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