Our Story

The Well is an authentic community of faith, hope, and love. We are a one-of-a-kind collection of people who exist to love God with all of our heart, soul, mind and strength. Because of our love for God, we are compelled to share the great news of Jesus Christ through small acts of service, mercy and love. Our community believes it is our responsibility to be the hands and feet of Christ in the world. We have no greater desire than to follow Christ and offer hope to a world that is broken and in need of redemption.


In 2011, God began to stir Ed and Emily Love with a passion for the community of Ionia, MI. The Love family connected to a small group of adventurous people who also had a passion for Ionia. After studying John 4 and the story of the woman at the well, the small group sensed that The Well was the perfect identity for the new work they were starting in Ionia. In many ways, the image of "the well" seemed to connect to the unique needs of the Ionia region.


In the fall of 2011 The Well began meeting, eating, creating, praying, and studying God's word together in anticipation for the new work. In addition, The Well initiated several "hope projects" within the community and began serving people in need.


In May of 2012 a local business owner offered us the use of their facility to The Well. The missionaries to Ionia rallied together to freshen up the facility and transform it into a casual coffee-house type environment. They began worship gatherings on Sept. 30, 2012.  


In November of 2012 the former First Baptist Church of Ionia gave their facility to The Well. Everyone chipped in and helped freshen up the facility. The first gathering in the new space was held on Dec. 23rd, 2012.


In the summer/fall of 2016, Ed Love was called to bring his influence to the church-planting movement on a national level.  He was hired by the Wesleyan Church of North America to be the Director of Church Planting and Multiplication. At the same time, Joel and Kelly Leipprandt had recently joined The Well; Joel was serving as a pastoral intern.  After a rigorous and prayerful process, Joel was called to serve The Well in its next season as the Lead Pastor.


Joel and Kelly are both Ionia natives and they have an incredibly love and passion for the Ionia community.  Their heart is to continually build upon and advance the ministry started by the Love family and the core team that planted The Well.


This is an exciting season.  We believe that God has gifted and positioned The Well to have an incredible Kingdom influence on the Greater-Ionia community.  There is much work to do. There are many people to reach.


How has God gifted you to contribute toward the movement in 2018 and beyond?

That’s the question…

Because there’s a community to reach…