Brief Church History

Chapel Hill Community Church is a brethren-heritage church, planted by Hillcrest Bible Chapel in…. 

For several years the church met in a local school hall, and in a rugby club. When a God-given opportunity came to purchase land to the north of Hamilton, it was entirely undeveloped farm land – an act of faith to purchase and settle.

Though the church had initially called itself ‘Northside’, the builders who were developing the site began to refer to the slightly elevated plot as ‘Chapel Hill’. The church adopted this name officially and opened the building in August, 1999.

When Chapel Hill’s facilities opened, new housing developments were sprouting fast, with young families settling in. The decision was taken to open a kindergarten to meet the young community’s needs, soon followed by a Playgroup and Mainly Music. These preschool ministries continue to thrive today.

The new church grew rapidly, and in keeping with its past decided to plant again. Northgate is our sister church, and began its planting journey in 2007.

Founding pastors Kemp and Anne Pallessen stepped down in [2001?], and John Buchanan was appointed. He resigned in 2009, and Philip Renner has served as pastor since 2010.

In 2015, Chapel Hill partnered with the newly established Rototuna High Schools to run the 24-7 Youthwork programme there. Two youth workers spend 10 hours each in the school building relationships, running school-approved programmes, and supporting students as needed.