Our Story

The story of the Vineyard Church of Brenham begins with Villard and Diane Hunter. 

Villard and his wife, Diane are both from Wheeler, Texas, a small town in the Texas panhandle. They grew up and attended school together in Wheeler and later married while Villard was attending Bethany Nazarene College (now Southern Nazarene University) in Bethany, Oklahoma. Their two children, Terri and Chad, were born while Villard was a college student. After graduation, Villard became a pastor in the Church of the Nazarene denomination where he served two congregations over 15 years.

In 1983, while Villard and his family were living in the Houston area, he attended a series of meetings with John Wimber at Church in the City in Houston, Texas (which later became the Vineyard Church of Houston). John Wimber was the pastor of the Vineyard Church of Anaheim and the founder and National Director of the Association of Vineyard Churches. During those meetings, Villard had a powerful experience with the Holy Spirit that dramatically changed the course of his life. He stepped down as pastor of the Nazarene Church and started a small non-denominational church in Houston, where he served as the pastor for 3 years.

During that time, Villard felt God leading him to move his family to Brenham, Texas to start another church. They moved to Brenham in 1987, but it would be another 7 years before anything came together. In early 1994, a small, non-denominational church began meeting and the Hunters attended their services. They called themselves Brenham Christian Fellowship. In 1996, the leadership of the church asked Villard to be their pastor. His first Sunday as pastor was June 29, 1996. In 1999, the church began the formal “adoption” process to become a Vineyard church. On September 10, 2000, the church officially became the Vineyard Church of Brenham. The Hunters served as pastors until December 2017. 

Joel Knox is from Malakoff, Texas, a small town in East Texas. His wife, Danelle is from Houston, Texas. They met at Southwestern Assemblies of God University in Waxahachie, Texas in 1989. Joel graduated from Southwestern in 1991; Danelle graduated in 2011. They were married in 1991 and have three children: Chris, Jessica and Anna. They served as youth pastors in Waxahachie, Jackson, Mississippi and Kaufman, Texas from 1990 to 1996. 

In 1995, while living in Jackson, Mississippi, Joel and Danelle visited a Vineyard church for the first time and had a powerful encounter with the Holy Spirit.  They determined they would attend a Vineyard church if they could ever live close enough to participate in the life of  such a  church. In 1998, Joel and Danelle moved their family to Spring, Texas and discovered a Vineyard church within a few minutes from their home. They joined a small group that met in their neighborhood and were actively involved in the Vineyard community for almost 3 years.

In January of 2001, Joel and Danelle, along with another 15 families from the Vineyard in Spring, joined a "planting team" that was sent out to plant a Vineyard Church in Conroe, Texas. Over the next 15 years, Joel, Danelle and their family were actively involved in nearly every facet of ministry in that church.  In 2014, Joel and Danelle visited the Vineyard in Brenham, where they met Villard and Diane Hunter.  They moved to Brenham in  2016 and then succeeded Villard and Diane as pastors in January of 2018.