Our Story

Like many journeys, ours has been a great adventure. Like yours, our story is part of a much bigger story with Jesus as the main character and God's rescue and salvation of the world as the main narrative. May your story and ours will come together for such a time as this.

Our story began when Gerry and Jamie LaFond started a bible study group in their home in Tolland with a few other families in 1999 with the belief that, “If this is God it will grow.” And it did. In late 2000 the growing community, now at over 40, moved to larger space in the Twin Pond Complex in Tolland, CT.

As the new community continued to grow, tragedy struck when Pastor Gerry passed away unexpectedly in 2003. Through many tears and prayers, the community came together with a renewed commitment to the vision to reach the northeast region of Connecticut with the Good News of Jesus Christ.

In September of 2003, the leadership was passed to Weston and Karen Brooks. Our diverse community has continued to grow and prosper to 250 people with the same vision to reach the northeast with the Good News of Jesus and to plant churches in underserved communities.

Weston & Karen Brooks

After spending 15 years in business, finance and investments, Weston accepted the role of Lead Pastor at The River. He gets most excited about the presence of the Lord, genuine community and the mission to share God's love and salvation through Jesus Christ. And, of course, he loves being with his own family and....fishing.

Love A Lot Home

In 2011 we partnered with The Happy Church in New Haven to support Love A Lot Children’s Home in Ghana, Africa with a vision to raise orphans in the love of Jesus and, where possible, work to see them adopted into loving families. Eight children have now been successfully adopted and the home is currently caring for another 8 children. We have purchased land and have constructed a new home that can house 30-40 children.

In Honor of Pastor Gerry LaFond

In 1994, the Lord inspired a vision in Gerry's heart to plant a church in Tolland with an emphasis on the presence of the Lord, love for people, a love for the community, an expression of God’s Holy Spirit, and a commitment to telling others about the Good News of Jesus Christ. In 1999 Gerry and his family started a home group that quickly grew to become The River of Life Christian Fellowship. In June 2003, Pastor Gerry passed away. We honor his legacy and faith. And we honor his family: Jamie, Dana and Jeremy.