Brooks Rice currently serves as Lead Pastor of Westside Faith Center Foursquare Church in Eugene, OR and is also an adjunct professor at New Hope Christian College, teaching “Mission of the Church” and “Pastoral Skills.” As such, Brooks brings both a scholarly and a pastoral/practioner perspective to his classes. Says Brooks, “Being able to work with college students and lead a church are a hope fulfilled.”
Initially, Brooks thought his life would be spent as a missionary or as a paramedic. He was able to travel extensively in his college years, which included a Youth With a Mission training program in Colorado that led him to a three-month missions outreach in South Africa. While he loved traveling, Brooks felt a clear call to pastoring while he was a college intern with the Onyx House ministry at the University of Oregon. In the midst of pursuing his major in Fine Arts and minor in Religious Studies at the U of O, he was working with a youth group in Sweet Home, Oregon and volunteering many summer days at high school camps. While he was trying to nail down a possible future vocation, he felt that he was already doing what he was supposed to be doing for the rest of his life…sharing and contextualizing the gospel for people of all generations. He graduated from the U of O in 2003 and soon after was married to his wife, Christy. Together they continued serving in the Onyx House ministry until 2005.
After an extended, soul-searching trip to Europe in the spring of 2005, they decided to move to their home state of Washington and join the staff of New Life Foursquare Church in Everett. New Life Church is a large church with over a dozen pastors on staff, and Brooks served in multiple capacities: youth ministry, small groups, marriage counseling, pre-marital prep and worship. The experience they gained in their eight years on staff at New Life prepared and inspired them to lead their own church. It was at this time that Brooks decided that attending seminary would be a worthwhile venture to equip him for senior pastoring. He was accepted to Fuller Theological Seminary and will complete his Master’s of Global Leadership in the spring of 2016.
Brooks and Christy were overjoyed when an opportunity arose in 2013 to pastor Westside; it currently meets at Prairie Mountain School in West Eugene. They have two young boys, Jeremiah (6 yrs) and William (3 yrs), and enjoy eating good food with friends, cheering for the Ducks, and finding new areas of the world to explore.