Citygate was formed in 2004 and initially led by Jonathan Bird. Citygate first functioned under the umbrella of City in Focus and became its own non-profit entity in 2013. From the beginning, Jonathan and the board had a vision of connecting churches to work collaboratively in understanding and responding effectively to both their common calling and the challenges of the city. Highlights from these years include three impactful housing conferences (in 2005, 2008 and 2011) and a city-wide consultation in 2018.
In 2018, Jonathan moved on to work with Union Gospel Mission and the board of Citygate approached Tim Dickau to revive the organization and implement a renewal of the vision. In May, 2020, Tim began to re-establish Citygate’s vision, board and work. That initial work focused on dialogue with individual leaders across the city and doing consultations with churches. Following those first months, the organization has widened its focus to include helping churches create affordable housing, develop social enterprises, amplify corporate responses to mental health, welcome refugee claimants, reimagine church properties, join in broad based organizing and revitalize the mission of individual churches.
Through conferences, consultations, community development processes, conversations and courses, Citygate is helping churches engage their neighbourhoods and address the issues of our city in a full way.