Russ and his wife Shari are the founders and leaders of The River. They have been active in local church ministry and missions since 1998. They have been happily married since 2001 and together they have 4 amazing boys - Russell, Silas, and Isaac, and Joseph.
Russ is also a Christian speaker and the author of two Books - Becoming A Champion and Making Disciples and Leading Small Groups. He is passionate about helping people, churches, and ministry organizations reach their greatest potential in Christ.
With a heart to see God's people grow strong and shine bright to the world around them, Russ is passionate about seeing Christians live the lives of freedom, victory, and strength God created them to. He has compiled over 150 topical and conceptual teachings to be used to develop spiritual maturity in the lives of Christians. Through The River and his ministry, Russ is excited to see what God will continue to do throughout the greater Richmond area and all around the world. To learn more, you can visit his ministry website by clicking here.
Spiritual Covering and Home Base
The River is based out of Commonwealth Chapel in Midlothian, VA under the leadership and spiritual covering of Pastors Brandon and Katie Samuel. Brandon and Russ attended Northpoint Bible College together in the early 2000s.
Pastor Scott Tischler and Russ have been friends and fellow Richmond, VA area pastors since 2012. Scott provides regular accountability, counsel, and coaching to Russ and The River. Scott and his wife Penny are the lead pastors of Life Church in Colonial Heights, VA.
The River is honored to bless and serve ministry leaders, churches, and organizations from all denominations. Below are some of the organizations Pastor Russ has ministered with over the years.
Friends of Russ and The River
Ministry flows out of relationship with the Lord and other Christian brothers and sisters. Because of this, close friendships, accountability, prayer partners, and ministry advisers are very important to Russ and The River. Below are some of the churches where Russ has ministered and/or ministers whom Russ has an ongoing relationship with. In addition to the names below, Russ and The River are led and held accountable by a Board of Trustees, a group of intercessors, and a team of ministry advisers.
Bethany Church in Wyckoff, NJ - Pastors Don James and Rich Osborne
Boston Worship Center Church in Boston, MA
Christian Center Hof Church in Hof, Germany - Pastor Watson Klutz
CityReach LA Church in Santa Monica, CA - Pastors Nathan Kollar and Josh Houston
Commonwealth Chapel Church in Richmond, VA - Pastor Brandon Samuel
Crosslight Church in Petersburg, VA - Pastors Mike Buckley and David Wiley
Crossroads Community Church in Hopewell, VA
Destination Church in Colonial Heights, VA - Pastor Bryan Briggs
Emmanuel Fellowship Church in Allentown, PA - Pastor Joe Nieves
Fellowship Baptist Church in Ettrick, VA
First Assembly of God Church in Petersburg, VA - Pastor Dwayne Walker
House of Prayer Church in Chesterfield, VA - Pastor Steve Stells
King's Castle Ministries in San Salvador, El Salvador
Lakemont Baptist Church in Petersburg, VA
Life Church in Colonial Heights, VA - Pastor Scott Tischler
Matoaca Christian Fellowship Church in Matoaca, VA - Pastor Ryan Atchison
New Hope Chapel Church in Carolina, RI - Pastor Bob Jaruta
Norwich Church in Norwich, CT
One Church in Westerville, OH - Pastor Greg Ford
Providence Foursquare Gospel Church in Providence, RI
The Bridge Church in Mechanicsville, VA - Pastor Lowell Qualls
Ute Indian Reservation in Fort Duchesne, UT
Young Life Youth Ministry in Allentown, PA - Eric Johnson
Young Life Youth Ministry in West Milford, NJ - Mona Patel