Our Teaching Model

A Plurality of Leadership

At Hope Community Church, we are led by a plurality of leadership, firmly rooted in the New Testament teachings. Our elders are thoughtfully appointed and installed through a rigorous process, ensuring a balanced and collaborative leadership team. Among these leaders, Jason Gore serves as the lead pastor, first among equals, guiding the mission of Hope with humility and vision. We believe in harnessing the diverse gifts of our congregation, creating spaces where these talents can flourish. Our focus is on leading a disciple-making movement that transcends traditional megachurch models, fostering genuine growth and spiritual development within our community. Clay Burgess, Executive Director of Preaching and Theology leads the teaching team. This close unit is in constant contact, planning and preparing together each week. Our main goal at Hope is to be a Biblically faithful and holistically healthy Church, and that starts with our leadership.

Our Teaching Team

Jason Gore

Lead Pastor + Teaching Pastor

Jason’s life began training him for leadership as far back as his time wrestling and playing football at Cary High School.  The influence of great coaches both there and during his time on the Wolfpack Wrestling Team at NC State converged with his deep desire for those far from God to know the hope that comes from a personal relationship with Him. Jason first attended and began serving as a volunteer at Hope Community Church back in 1997, while his career path took him from the business world into full-time ministry and, eventually, into serving as a pastor in 2003.  Through it all, he has remained connected to his roots on the mat and the field, serving his community as a coach in youth sports, instilling the life and leadership skills that meant so much to him growing up into another generation of kids and teenagers. Even as a coach and with the honor of being the Lead Pastor of Hope Community Church, he would tell you that his most important roles are being a husband to his wife, Diana, and a father to his three children: Aidan, Addison, and Connor. 

Clay Burgess

Executive Director of Theology

Clay is a native of North Carolina.  He graduated from the University of North Carolina and has been a pastor in the Triangle area since 2002.  His theological education includes a MDIV from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and a ThM and DMin from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary.  Clay joined the Hope staff in 2019 and has served in a variety of capacities.  He is passionate about studying and teaching the Bible and helping others do the same.

Clay is married to Stephanie, and they have three adult sons. In addition to his responsibilities at church, Clay loves hanging out with his family enjoying good food and lively conversation.  He enjoys peanut M&Ms, watching shows, Yankee games, and Tar Heel sports with Steph.  To be able to do all of that at the beach is a great day for him!

Gary Vet

Teaching Pastor

Gary Vet serves as a Teaching Pastor here at Hope. For over 15 years, Gary has been involved in many areas at Hope Community including staff mentorship, spiritual formation, pastoral development, and teaching.  

Gary and his wife Martha find joy in their shared moments, including caring for Martha’s mother who resides with them. They also appreciate having their two sons and grandsons close by, as family holds a significant place in their lives and they savor every opportunity to be together.

Duane Calvin

Teaching Pastor

As the Raleigh Campus Pastor, Duane Calvin oversees the Raleigh campus staff. He formerly served as Global Hope Ministry leader at Hope before taking on the role of Garner Campus Pastor when the Garner campus launched in 2019. Prior to his time at Hope, Duane was the Family Ministry Pastor at a church in Okinawa, Japan. Pastor Duane is a retired United States Marine. He loves basketball, football and spending time with his family. He and his wife Tasha have two young adult children, a daughter named Tia and a son named Sam.

Ayren Nelson

Teaching Pastor

Ayren Nelson serves as the Spiritual Formation Coordinator at Hope, joining the team in June 2018. With a deep passion for fostering spiritual growth and maturity in Christ, Ayren brings over 12 years of experience in Student Ministry and is currently pursuing an MDiv at Grace Theological Seminary. Originally from New Orleans, Ayren has also lived in Dallas, TX, and Ventura, CA, before settling in North Carolina. Here, he met his wife Morgan through Hope’s Young Adults program, and they married in August 2020, eagerly awaiting their first child in September. Together, they co-host the True Discipleship Podcast and enjoy exploring new cuisines and travel destinations. Ayren’s heart’s desire is that Hope remains a place where individuals encounter Jesus authentically and deeply.

Ben Foote

Guest Teaching Pastor

Ben Foote is a traveling Teaching Pastor and serves on the Teaching Team at Hope Community Church. For over a decade, Ben has served in many different roles and ministries in the local church, but his passion has remained the same: to clearly communicate our constant God to a constantly changing culture. Ben loves to make the deep and profound truth of Jesus’ grace accessible and easy-to-understand for people who think they are too far gone and too broken.

Ben has a beautiful family: his wife, Ali, and his three kids, Emery, Micah, and Chloe. When he’s not teaching, you will most likely find Ben devouring a good book, scoring a Cleveland Guardians game, throwing the baseball in the backyard, recording his own music, or trouncing his family in a game of cards. However, above everything else, you’ll find Ben passionate about sharing the awesome love of Christ with a lost and broken world.

Léonce Crump

Léonce Crump

Guest Teaching Pastor

Pastor Léonce B. Crump Jr. has served as one of the communicators on Hope Community Church’s Teaching Team for the past four years. Pastor Léonce is an international speaker, former NFL athlete, and the co-founder and senior pastor of Renovation Church in Atlanta, Georgia. He is also the author of Renovate: Changing Who You Are by Loving Where You Are and co-author of The Resilience Factor: A Step-By-Step Guide to Catalyse an Unbreakable Team. Léonce has been published in varying print and digital publications, writing on everything from leadership to politics. He serves on several nonprofit boards that promote human flourishing. A champion for the church’s participation in focused and intentional cultural renewal, Pastor Léonce is a leading voice of a generation committed to operating as God’s redemptive agents on the earth. Ps. Léonce and his wife, Breanna, reside in Atlanta with their three daughters and son.

Duane Calvin

Executive Director | Community Impact

Heather Sullivan is a wife to Shaun and mom of two sons—Seth and Brady. She is driven by the belief that every one of us can change the world with the hope found in knowing Jesus—and it all starts when we learn to see the people around us the way He does. As a former high-school teacher turned football, wrestling, and plant mom, her passion as a follower of Jesus is to influence entire communities to jump into loving and serving youth and families so that every kid can be confident in and compelled by the hope they have in Jesus. 

Teaching Model FAQ

At Hope Community Church, we are led by a plurality of leadership, firmly rooted in the New Testament teachings.

Depending on the topic and timeframe, we will still have sermon series; however there will be times that we do not, and simply walk through a book of the Bible together as a church.

As the Lead Pastor, Jason Gore will handle a majority of the teaching. This would mean Jason teaching between 20-30 weekends per year. The teaching team will rotate in based on the topic and series.

 The weekend teacher will frequently rotate campuses, so there will be live teaching at your campus on a regular basis.

In the way our teachers shepherd Hope as a whole through Biblical teaching, our Campus Pastors zoom in  and shepherd the congregations at their campus. They are essentially “your pastor” at the campus you attend.

At Hope we are focused on creating a disciple making movement. That movement won’t be tied to a single person. Jason will cast vision, and the teaching team will lead the messages based on their fit, experience and expertise.