Mark Darling has been a pastor, leader, church planter, conference speaker, counselor, and teacher for 24 years. He was a co-founder of Evergreen Church, The Rock and The Urban Refuge. He not only has helped open the door for others to discover and serve Christ, but he is also known as an influential, motivating, and dynamic speaker. His passion is to reach as many un-churched individuals as possible from any age group or culture. His mission is to make Christ attractive to the world so that the Christian would want to love and follow Christ and so that the non-Christian would want to know and trust Christ! Changing lives is his passion and prayer! Mark is also passionate about helping fathers and mothers raise children who will embrace Jesus Christ and become committed disciples of Christ.
Mark has been married for 31 years and is the father of four children; three of whom are now married. He is the proud grandfather of four grandchildren! He lives in the city of Eagan, Minnesota with his wife, Kathy. Mark serves on the board of Great Commission Latin America and Great CommissionChurches and is very involved in this movement of churches. Mark also oversees our Rock Berlin churchin Germany. Mark is currently a pastor at The Rock Church in Minneapolis, MN where he serves alongside his children and their spouses.
In January of 1999 two earth shattering events took place: the Vikings cost themselves a trip to the Super Bowl on their first and only missed field goal of the season and The Rock opened up its doors in Uptown, Minneapolis. As a freshman at the U of M that year, Karl was invited to what would become a Rock small group and never checked out another Christian group. God got a hold of his life and he began growing in his relationship with God, reading the Bible everyday, developing a passion to share Christ with lost people, serving in ministries, going on mission trips, and leading small groups.
Planning to become a biology teacher, God had a different experiment in store for Karl and in 2002 he raised support to go on staff at The Rock in order to reestablish the campus ministry at the U of M that first got him involved at The Rock. Karl was ordained as a pastor in October 2009.
Two weeks before the Rock opened its doors, a young, attractive woman named Maren got saved and immediately joined the small group Karl was a member of. Despite a mutual appreciation and friendship throughout college, neither Karl nor Maren held any romantic interest in the other until five years later and they were married on May 1st, 2005. They now have two daughters, one son, and no dogs.
Ryan graduated from South Dakota State University in December of 1997 with a degree in Electrical Engineering. He moved to the Twin Cities on New Year's Eve 1997 to start his career at 3M. Ryan came to Evergreen Bloomington for the first time in April 1998. He really enjoyed the service, but didn't get involved until October when he joined his first Small Group. He was overwhelmed by the people in the group by their love and grace that he accepted Christ that night. He was so excited about the change in his life that he went home and called his girlfriend Laura to tell her about it. She joined the small group the very next week. This small group was then part of The Rock Church plant in January 1999.
Ryan began serving right away and over the years has had many different roles and responsibilities. He has co-led several small groups and ministries. He is currently a House Church leader, location budget leader and oversees all the ministries at The Rock. Since being ordained as a pastor in October 2009, Ryan's roles haven't changed much except the increased teaching opportunities at The Rock. Ryan still works full time at 3M, so his time is a little more constrained. He is passionate about his family and being able to serve with them at The Rock. He really strives to be an example to those around him, especially his family. He is passionate about his parenting and passing the baton to the next generation.
Ryan married Laura in 2002 after dating for 3.5 years. They have five children, Josh, Jakin, Jude, Grace, and Rebekah.