This past weekend was the culmination of a great deal of prayer, energy, effort, finances, patience, people, collaboration, and a whole lot of Holy Spirit! God showed up this weekend as Rising Church soft launched on Saturday night and Sunday morning through 2 events that proved to be a greater dynamic combination than nitrogen and glycerine. What a weekend!
We had the opportunity to be an event sponsor for Leesburg’s 4th of July Festival at the Ida Lee Park (the same location that we host our weekly worship services at). We were one of only a half-dozen sponsors for the event and the only church/ministry to sponsor the event which gave us great exposure in our community. They announced our church name a couple of times from stage, we had a bright orange canopy/booth setup in a high traffic area, and we gave away about 1800 of the 2000 sunglasses we had purchased for the event. All of this, of course, was to put us in position in our community to connect with people, share about our church plant, and pray with them. Our team had several conversations with individuals and families that were interested in checking out our church and several of us had the opportunity to pray with people. (CLICK HERE to view the photo album of the event on our FaceBook Page)
I had an incredible opportunity to pray with a young engaged couple – Jose & Bella – and hear a little bit of their story. We had a great connection and they both said they’d like to come and visit our church sometime. I gave Jose my business card so we could meet up in the coming weeks to talk more. I was overwhelmed on Sunday morning when Jose called me while we were setting up for our first weekly service and he let me know that he and Bella wanted to come to church and wanted to double check our start time. As I shared this with our team as we finished setting up and praying God breathed a new enthusiasm into our efforts.
Sunday, 5th of July
Our first weekly worship service. We have hosted 3 monthly worship services leading up to this Sunday (April, May & June). They were all at 4pm so this was our first time gathering together as a team at 7:30am for setup. Not many of us are morning people – myself included – but God’s grace was sufficient and everyone chipped in to help get things setup and ready for Hospitality, KidsMin, and our Worship Gathering. I was impressed with how quickly most things got taken care of. It was a true team effort. We are so humbled and honored to work with this amazing team that God has assembled over the past year. Every single one of them has been an answer to prayer. It is such a joy to plant a church with a group of people that share the same passion of reaching the lost and are excited to be a part of this new work that God is doing in Rising Church.
We were ready to go at 10:10am. And Jose and Bella were there. As were a few other visiting families. It was such an awesome experience. Something that has been a calling, a dream, an idea for months and months (almost 2 years) became a reality by a moving of God’s Holy Spirit as we soft launched this weekend.
Prayerfully, a big part of our goal this summer through our soft launch is to see our team continue to grow and be built up by God. We want to leverage this time to recruit other trend setters, trail blazers, and those hungry to see the lost reached with the Gospel so that when we hard launch in mid-September – near the start of our school year – we are ready to go!
- October 2013 Neva and I realized God was calling us to plant a church
- June 2014 we moved back to Northern Virginia to do just that
- August 2014 our small group began meeting in our home weekly
- April 2015 we hosted our first monthly worship service
- July 2015 we hosted our first weekly worship service
It has been an amazing ride and we can’t wait to see what God has in store for us! We would love for you to join God in what He is doing here in Leesburg through Rising Church.
- Sign up to be a part of our prayer team (CLICK HERE)
- Financially partner with us as we begin our second year of ministry (CLICK HERE)
- Join us on a Sunday mornings at 10:10am at the Ida Lee Rec Center for our worship gatherings (JUST SHOW UP)!
Thank you for all of the prayers and support that went into making this past weekend a reality.