our story

Northwest Hills Community Church is a multi-generational church of people from towns all across the Northwest Corner on mission together following Christ and leading others to Him.


We meet in the historic Calvary Baptist Church building on the corner of Prospect and Church Streets in downtown Torrington across the street from the Vogel-Wetmore School.

 

NHCC is affiliated with Converge Northeast, and is situated within the evangelical, Reformed, and Baptist traditions.

Confession of faith

Download PDF with Scripture Proofs


Congregational Statement of Faith

Northwest Hills Community Church is committed to biblical fidelity and the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Our Congregational Statement of Faith represents ‘mere Christianity.’ That is, it represents our core doctrines which comprise the biblical faith. For this reason, we require all members to affirm the Congregational Statement of Faith. Additionally, and in unity with the historic church, we believe and confess the Apostles’, Nicene and Chalcedonian Creeds as accurate representations of Scripture’s teaching.


The Word of God

The sixty-six books contained in the Protestant canon are the Word of God. The Bible is completely inerrant  and infallible,  and is a product of the Holy Spirit’s inspiration.  The Bible alone is the infallible rule of Christian faith and practice. 


The Trinity

There is only one God at all times in in all places. He is uncreated, eternal,  personal, omnipotent,  omniscient, immutable, and distinct from his creation. The one being of God eternally exists in three persons; namely the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. 

 

Jesus Christ

The Son of God is the Creator and is equal in divinity, glory, and power to God the Father and God the Holy Spirit.  The Son is eternal and therefore preexisted his human birth at Bethlehem.  In the fullness of time, Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary.  His humanity was like us in all respects, yet he was without sin.  He was crucified, buried, was bodily resurrected, and now sits at the right hand of God.  As the incarnate Son of God, he is and will always be fully God and fully man, and the only mediator between man and God.


The Holy Spirit

The Holy Spirit is fully God, co-eternal, and equal in divinity, glory, and power to God the Father and God the Son.  The Holy Spirit is personal and was active in creation.  He sovereignly regenerates sinners and convicts them of sin.  He empowers believers for service, sanctifies them, and seals them for the last day.


The Gospel

All of humanity is sinful by nature and by choice.  Because man cannot establish peace with God or atone for his sin,  the Father sent his Son into the world in order that he might save those who would repent and believe.  Jesus lived a life of perfect obedience to the law  and then was crucified in the place of sinners.  Upon the cross, the Son of God received upon himself the wrath of God on behalf of those who would repent and believe. Jesus atoned for the sins of his people, and in place of their sin he imputed his perfectly righteous life such that, when a sinner repents and places faith in Christ alone for his salvation, he receives comprehensive pardon for his sins and the perfect righteousness of Christ.  Sinners are justified by faith apart from any work of their own whatsoever.  The applied salvific work of Christ results in the redeemed sinner receiving eternal life,  adoption into the family of God,  and membership into the body of Christ.  Upon regeneration, the Holy Spirit inhabits the hearts of his people and convicts them of sin and teaches them the law of God.  As a result of the continual and relentless redemptive work of the Spirit, the believer becomes more and more like Christ.  Because it is God who saves sinners, and because no one can stay his hand,  those who are his will inevitably persevere in faithfulness until their death or the return of Christ.  Those who depart from a professed faith in Christ never truly knew Christ, and were never of his flock. 

 

The Church

The Christian church is comprised of those who have been baptized and profess repentance and faith in Christ.  It is the primary mission of the church to worship God on the Lord’s Day, to evangelize the lost, to teach God’s Word, and to observe all ordinances and commands given by Christ.  All believers are obligated to join themselves to local churches when and where they have the opportunity.  Likewise, all who are admitted to the privileges of a church are also subject to its discipline and governance, according to the rule of Christ.


Baptism and the Lord’s Supper

The New Testament has given the people of God two ordinances to carry out in the life of the church. Baptism is the act in which a Christian is immersed in and brought out of water by another Christian.  The Triune formula as indicated at Matthew 28:19 is the only oral invocation utilized for Christians baptism. The Lord’s Supper is the act in which a local church gathers and partakes of bread wine/grape juice in remembrance of Christ and his redemptive work.  Like baptism, the Lord’s Supper is restricted to Christians.


Gender & Marriage

Both Adam and Eve were created in God's image, equal before God as persons and distinct in their manhood and womanhood. Distinctions in masculine and feminine roles are ordained by God as part of the created order, and should find an echo in every human heart.  God’s revealed will for all people is chastity outside of marriage and fidelity within marriage. God has designed marriage to be a covenantal, sexual, procreative, lifelong union of only one man and one woman, as husband and wife, and is meant to signify the covenant love between Christ and his bride the church. God has not designed marriage to be a homosexual, polygamous, or polyamorous relationship.


Last Things

Those who die in a state of peace with God before the general resurrection exist in a temporary disembodied state in paradise with Christ.  Those who die in their sin prior to the general resurrection exist temporarily in a place of torment.  On the last day, the Son of God will return in victorious judgement, establishing his kingdom upon a renewed earth.  All people will be resurrected and judged, and only those who are in Christ, as evidenced by their good works, will enter into the Kingdom of God.  Those who did not receive Christ by repentance and faith will enter into a place of eternal conscience torment.  There are gradations of rewards in heaven and punishments in hell.

 

Statement of Theological Distinctives


The Statement of Theological Distinctives reflects what distinguishes Northwest Hills Community Church from other churches who would affirm the same basic doctrines. These distinctives shape the way that NHCC is led and the direction the church is headed. We do not expect all members to embrace all aspects of these distinctives, but members should expect that the distinctives will be maintained in all ministry environments, and members may not teach contrary to them. While all members of Northwest Hills Community Church must affirm The Congregational Statement of Faith, both elders, deacons, and all who teach within NHCC must also adhere to The Statement of Theological Distinctives.


Creation and Complementarity

God created all things  from nothing,  speaking creation into existence.  All things are dependent upon God, and nothing can exist apart from God’s sovereign decree. God created all things within the span of six ordinary twenty-four hour days.  Every human from conception has been made in the image of God and is therefore intrinsically valuable.  The existence of every human is intended by God and is in no way accidental.  We deny that the existence of man is a result of godless, naturalistic, evolutionary processes. We deny that some humans are more or less valuable in the sight of God due to the color of their skin, stage of development, or the functionality of their body or mind.  Both Old and New Testaments affirm the principle of male headship in the family and in the covenant community. 

 

The Fall & the Human Condition

Humanity was created good  and upon Adam’s intentional act of rebellion against God, all of humanity was thrown into a state of guilt and condemnation before God.  Sin came into the world through Adam’s sin, and all were made sinners.  Because of sin, the natural man is spiritually dead,  is enslaved to sin,  and is subject to physical death because the wages of sin is death.  The natural man is incapable of obedience to God, whether obedience to his holy law, or obedience in the form of repentance and faith in Christ.  Every part of the natural man is in some manner corrupted by sin, including the human will.  Sinful man loves his sin and is at war with God—he cannot of his own volition bend his knee in repentance toward God. God’s existence is revealed to the natural man through his creation, but in his idolatry he suppresses that knowledge such that he is without a defense for his unbelief. 


The Sovereignty of God in All Things

The Triune God has decreed the end from the beginning,  having ordained whatsoever comes to pass.  However, God is not the author of sin, nor is violence offered to the will of his creatures; nor is the liberty or contingency of second causes taken away, but rather established.  God, upon the basis of his good pleasure alone, has elected those who will enjoy salvation in Christ.  Like creation, redemption is a work of the Triune God: God the Father predestined his elect according to his eternal decree, God the Son procured the salvation of sinners by his atoning death, and God the Holy Spirit applies the saving work of Christ to the life of the sinner.  God is perfectly just to have mercy upon whom he will have mercy, and compassion upon whom he will have compassion.  God has drawn only those whom Christ will raise.  Salvation therefore, does not hinge upon human will, but rather the will of God.  While man does make a choice as to whether to repent and believe in Christ, his decision to repent is predicated upon God’s sovereign choice. 


The Law of God

There exists within the Bible a threefold division in the law of God. First are those moral laws, which are binding on all people for all time. These laws, codified within the ten commandments,  are a reflection of the perfect holy character of God, and are therefore unchanging. The moral law serves as the basis for civil government to rule well, as the means for sinners to learn of their sin,  and as a rule for holy and acceptable living for the redeemed.  Those civil laws which pertain to the governance of the nation state of Israel are not binding. However, the underlying moral principle remains binding. Those ceremonial laws which belonged to the sacrificial system of ancient Israel are not binding. Rather, these laws, like priest and temple sacrifice itself, serve as a typological portrayal of the person and work of Christ.


The Church and Its Polity

Jesus is the Chief Shepherd of the church, and he has appointed under-shepherds to care for his flock (i.e., Elders). The Scripture recognizes only two offices to be observed in the local church, namely Elder and Deacon.  The office of Elder is restricted to qualified men, and the office of Deacon is open to qualified men and women. 

leadership

Northwest Hills Community Church is a church that is protected, corrected, & directed by servant leaders called Elders. The broad goal of NHCC's church governance structure is to reflect a Biblical leadership structure that serves the church at 20 people or 2000 people, while remaining obedient to Scripture, wise & purposeful in practice, and generous in spirit.


The specific goal is to select Biblically-qualified men who are characterized by their servant-leadership and who demonstrate the Fruit of the Spirit. An extensive process involving prayerful evaluation, Biblical study, and congregational input is our regular practice to ensure a godly board for today and in the future.


Currently, our elder board consists of five elders: Mike Ambrose, Mike Clark, Duane Doot, Bill Lutton, and Michael Burgos.

  • mike ambrose // pastor

    Mike Ambrose served as pastor of the Calvary Baptist Church in Torrington for 25 years before that congregation joined with NHCC in 2015. Before coming to Connecticut, he served two churches in Illinois. He holds a BA in Biblical and Theological Studies and a MA in Religious Education. Pastor Mike enjoys working with the elders and members of NHCC, especially in ministries of discipleship, congregational care and missions. He and his wife Betsy have 4 grown children and 12 grandchildren.

  • MiCHAEL Burgos // Pastor

    Michael grew up in the Hudson Valley region of New York State and married his high school sweetheart Marion. Today they live in Winsted, Connecticut with their seven children, Abigail, Gabriel, Christian, Grace, Lily, Virginia, Israel, and a lazy dog named Jake. Michael holds a BS in Bible and Theology, a MA in Biblical Studies, and a PhD in Polemic Theology. His dissertation topic was on Oneness Pentecostalism, and may be downloaded here. Pastor Mike enjoys reading, writing, and spending time with his wife. 

  • duane doot // elder

    Duane grew up in Simsbury, Connecticut, in a God-fearing home along with his five siblings. He went to Southern Connecticut State University where he met his wife Kathy. They have three children and eleven grandchildren. Duane came to understand the Gospel and what a personal relationship with Christ was all about a customer of his shared Christ with him. He accepted the Lord when he was twenty-six years old. Duane started his construction business in 1980.  He chose Colossians 3:23 as his company's theme verse. "Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as  working for the Lord, not for human masters." Duane enjoys fishing as well as boating with his family. He enjoys riding his motorcycle with Kathy and biking with his son, son-in-laws and grandchildren.   

  • mike clark // elder

    Mike became a believer in Jesus when he was nineteen years old and has served the Lord in many different ways for the past 42 years. He has been involved in church planting, prison ministry, Biblical counseling, street evangelism, and assisted in starting Grace Place a CPR center in Torrington. Mike has been married to Janice for 42 years, he has three children and fifteen grand children. He served as Superintendent of Parking for the Parking Authority of White Plains for many years before retiring. His hobbies are gardening, fishing with his grand children, hiking, biking or just sitting under a tree reading a good book. His favorite Bible verse is Psalm 27:4.

  • bill lutton // elder

    Bill grew up in Vernon, Connecticut with a passion for motorcycles and the outdoors. He graduated from Porter and Chester Institute of Technology in 1981 and is currently the Vice President of Engineering for O.F. Mossberg & Sons. Bill and his wife, Patricia, met in 1980 while working at a restaurant. They have been happily married for 35 years and have been blessed with six children and nine grandchildren. The Lutton's had the privilege of being foster parents for eight years to high risk teen girls, as well as providing emergency temporary care for babies and young children. 


    In January 1987, Bill's boss invited him to attend a financial seminar at his church. This provided an opportunity for the pastor to share the gospel message with Bill and Patricia. They accepted Christ together and were baptized shortly afterward at a small Baptist church in Southern Maine. Over the years, Bill has had opportunities to teach adult Sunday school, act as a youth leader, preach, and participate in a weekly door to door outreach to share the gospel.

    The Lutton's have been attending NHCC since the first regular Sunday service. Bill has been serving on the Elder Board since April of 2010. His desire is to serve and glorify God each day through the power and guidance of the Holy Spirit. Bill believes as an elder he can help improve the programs offered at NHCC and develop future outreach efforts to share the grace and truth of Jesus Christ.