Meet Our Founder

I always thought God wanted to make me comfortable . . . .

But when I turned 50, I learned He wanted to make me useful.

I loved being a wife and a mother.  I loved leading women’s small group Bible studies. I loved being able to start a library in my church.  I felt safe and comfortable in my small world.

But on a beautiful early July morning in 1993, my comfort and safety slipped out of my hands.  I found my husband unresponsive on the bathroom floor.  He was only 53, we were supposed to grow old together.  After the funeral, after all the kids had left, I was alone.  Was this part of God’s plan?  I crawled into a deep hole of depression for a year, wondering if I would ever feel like living.  

With the help of faithful friends and a therapist, I finally began to re-engage in life.  That’s when I finally became useful to God.  He opened up His big world to me, gently coaxing me to take some risks.  New friends introduced me to a new way to worship.


My daughter introduced me to a woman in Thailand who challenged me to become a “good rebel” for Jesus.  The idea of starting a new “church without walls” where everyone was welcome began to take shape.  It was exciting, it wasn’t easy, but God was making me useful for Him!  That was how Cedar Springs became a reality.

Over the ensuing years, God has continued to give me glimpses of what His Kingdom on earth can be. He speaks to me through His Word and even shows me pictures of the next adventure. But I’m just one person in this adventure.  God sent John Bass to us from Nebraska just a few months after Cedar Springs got its name. A year later we were married. His passion for lost people and his gift of preaching continue to point people to Jesus. Leaders and individuals with special gifts and servant hearts show up at just the right time. Cedar Springs truly was and still is God’s idea! 


There is so much more to this adventure.  I guess it’s time to get serious about telling “the rest of the story" in the form of a book.

Founder Karen Bass

John and Karen Bass

Karen hands high school diploma to Sirinuch in Musekee, Thailand.