Our story

Dakota Christian Ministries was established and incorporated as a 501c(3) in 1986. This ministry was created as a result of Dakota Bible College closing its doors. The Bible College was located in Huron, South Dakota. Dakota Christian Ministries was established to be a church planting organization for North and South Dakota. Gerry Sappington was the first Director of the organization.


In 1995, Sappington resigned as the Director of Dakota Christian Ministries to become an instructor at Puget Sound Bible College. The organization was without a Director until April of 2000 when Mike Sojka became only the second director in the ministry’s history.


In 1999, Dakota Christian Ministries changed its name to Northern Plains Evangelistic Association (NPEA). Along with the name change came a redirection in the vision of the organization. Instead of limiting itself to planting churches in only North and South Dakota, NPEA now assists in planting churches wherever God leads this ministry.


In January of 2001, Wyoming Evangelistic Association merged with Northern Plains Evangelistic Association expanding NPEA’s territory to include Wyoming along with North and South Dakota. The Board of Directors decided in February of 2004 to adopt Manitoba, Canada as part of NPEA’s territory as well. This was decided because it seemed logical to plant churches in North Dakota that would be the mother churches to new churches planted in Manitoba. Geographically, the Canadian province connects with the state of North Dakota. Both organizations had planted numerous churches in their individual history.


The newly merged organization's first church plant was in Spearfish, SD in Sept. 2004 (North Point Christian Church). Since that time NPEA has planted a new church in Laramie, WY in Sept. 2008 (White Water Christian Church); partnered with a church plant in Boise, ID in Oct. 2008 (Canyon Ridge Church); partnered with relaunching a church in Mountain View, WY in Sept. 2011 (Gateway Community Christian Church); planted a new church in Bismarck, ND in Sept. 2012 (Revive Christian Church); and partnered with a church plant in Arlington Heights, IL in Oct. 2013 (Quest Church).


Oct. 2013 also marked the resignation of Mike Sojka as Director. NPEA moved the office to Rapid City, SD and the Board stepped up once again and moved forward. In September of 2015, NPEA was excited as Real Life Christian Church of Sheridan, WY was launched, and another milestone was achieved.


In 2018, NPEA helped CEM of Iowa plant RallyPoint Christian church in Sioux City, IA, and partnered with other church planting organizations to start Forge Christian church in Hastings, NE.


2019 marks NPEA's 20th anniversary and the launch of the 10th church we have help start with the grand opening of Pursuit Christian Church in Bozeman, MT.


2022 was a busy year as NPEA partnered with other church planting organizations to start The Story CC in Johnstown, CO and Mountain View CC in Creston, MT.


This summer another church planting family will be moving to western South Dakota to start another new church work. 

New Church work is hard work and Covid seemed to bring a new set of problems that cause some of the churches to struggle and close.  This saddened us greatly, but we cherish the thoughts that many seeds were planted for Jesus during the life of each church.


We continue to seek out more church planters help us start more new churches here in the northern plains.  Won't you help us reach out to those communities!



our core values

XD = Multiplying Disciples

There are many churches planted today that simply attract people who are already saved. Multiplying disciples is the #1 DNA component of every church NPEA plants. This was Jesus’ mission so it must be our mission as well!


XC = Multiplying Churches

It is ironic that if churches that are planted don’t help plant other churches within the first 3-5 years of their existence, they probably never will. Part of the DNA of every church NPEA plants is for each church to help reproduce other churches within three years of its birthday service. This follows the first century church example of multiplying itself to reach the planet!

XP = Multiplying Planters

Like many other church planting groups, we have always been plagued with a shortage of church planting candidates. This seems especially true of church planting candidates that are called to plant churches in our region. Another major characteristic in the DNA of the churches NPEA plants is to reproduce church planters. This will be achieved by using residency programs and apprenticeships!



Did you realize that more people are saved through church planting than any other outreach method? Church planting is the only mission you can support that will increase God’s resources for His whole Kingdom!tiplying Disciples