Dave, Vicki, Ron, Miriam and Jim and Kim Waddle
During our stay in Seattle, we stayed with my college roommate David Carlson and his wife Vicki in Bellevue Washington. It was great to renew this old relationship, and we enjoyed trying to remember the good old days at Geneva College.
Sunday morning we left Seattle and took the ferry to Bainbridge Island. Cross Sound Church is a PCA Church that SRC helped to plant several years ago. David Sellers is the second senior pastor to serve this congregation. Paul Schuler, the original church planter, and his family recently moved to Honolulu to take the senior pastors role at another SRC plant on the island.
David Sellers and Family
We were able to attend the worship services at Cross Sound at Bainbridge Island High School. It was a wonderful time of worship and we felt very welcomed and thoroughly enjoyed our time there.
We later went to the Sellers’ home for lunch, and were able to spend time with David, his wife Carrie, and their four active and wonderful children. David grew up in West Palm Beach and lived next door to Tommy Kiedis, Senior Pastor of Spanish River, as a child. Originally, David served Cross Sound as the assistant pastor before taking the senior pastors role this year.
Cross Sound’s staff is growing and so are their efforts to be engaged international ministry. Cross Sound just recently hired a Youth Pastor who shared some of his vision at the services we attended. They also are very involved in doing ministry in Mexico. Their strategy is to send construction teams and/or funds to Tijuana to build homes.
Cross Sound also supports Victor Cruz of Redeemer Church in Mexico. SRC has partnered with Victor on several projects over the years.
If you feel so led, please keep the Sellers and Cross Sound in your prayers as the minister on Bainbridge Island.
We had a very busy day in Denver yesterday. It started with a breakfast meeting with Shane Sunn. Shane is planting a church named Saint Patrick Presbyterian Church in the heart of the city of Denver, the planned launch date will be in November. Shane also serves as the director of the Western Church Planting Network. WCPN exists to assist western presbyteries in the planting of new churches and the establishment of Reformed University Campus ministries throughout the region. Shane and his family have recently moved from Greely, Co. where he planted St. Patrick Church. Please keep Shane and his family in your prayer as he carries on this important and needed work. Church planting has been difficult for the PCA in the west. There is a huge need for more reformed churches that preach the Gospel in the Denver area.
For lunch I met with Steven Reese. Steve is the senior pastor of Redeemer PCA in Parker Colorado. Spanish River partnered to plant Redeemer several years ago, and Steve has faithfully served this church. Redeemer meets in a local theater and averages around 120 in attendance at the worship service. Steve talked about the influence that David Nicholas had in his ministry, and how appreciative he was of the investment that SRC made in him and his church. Parker is a growing community , but also has one of the highest numbers of bankruptcies in the country. Parker is a beautiful community with near perfect weather, and a great view of the Rocky Mountains.
Ron and Miriam with Duane and Holly Cory
Miriam and I connected with Duane and Holly Cory in the evening. Duane was serving as an intern, when Miriam and I first came to SRC. He later served on staff for several years before heading out to Littleton, where he and Holly planted Deer Creek Church 25 years ago.
It was wonderful spending the evening with Cory’s, sharing some fun memories of SRC and hearing about great ministry through Deer Creek Church. Duane shared some special memories of David Nicholas, and talked about how much he learned from David.
Deer Creek has a beautiful facility and averages around 350 in attendance. They have a large and active youth ministry. They also have several international partners and have had several teams serve in foreign countries for short term mission trips. The church is also engaged in helping plant a church in a community close by Littleton.
Please keep the Cory’s, their 4 grown children and three grandchildren in your prayers.
Tuesday evening we met with the Pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Concord, Ma. Pastor Jerry Maguire and his wife Marg have been serving at this church for five years. Spanish River partnered to plant this church back in 1994.
Jerry and Marg gave us a great tour and history lesson about Concord, this is where the first real battle of the revolutionary war was fought.
Concord is also the home to Louisa May Alcott, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, and Nathaniel Hawthorne. This city used to be home to some large puritan churches, but with the influence of men like Emerson and Thoreau became liberal and to this day has very few evangelical churches. Redeemer Presbyterian is a bright light in a very dark community. The church has about 120 in attendance on a Sunday morning, they currently rent space in a community center in town for their worship services.
Pastor Maguire and Redeemer have a great heart for missions, Jerry is considering taking a sabbatical to teach at a Bible college in Kampala Uganda for six months. They have an intern from Gordon-Conwell Seminary that will fill in while they serve in Africa.
Please keep Jerry and Marg in your prayers has they faithfully serve in a beautiful yet difficult community.
We enjoyed our time with the Maguires, they treated us to a wonderful dinner at the Colonial Inn, which is a restaurant that started in 1716. Of course we had yankee pot roast. Later we had a sweet time of prayer for Redeemer Presbyterian and our families.
StoneBridge Church Community
Rick Harper, Ron, Kevin Burrell
We spent day four, Thursday September 15 in Charlotte. SRC helped to plant two churches in this area in the early 1990’s. The first church we visited was StoneBridge Church Community. The senior pastor is Rick Harper, who has been serving in this church since 1997, and accepted the position of senior pastor in 2004. We also spent time with Kevin Burrell, the assistant pastor, Kevin works in the area of assimilation.
StoneBridge Church Community changed its name a few years ago from the original name of University City Presbyterian Church. They use their current name to highlight the values of their church. Their commitment to planting churches focuses on planting churches in areas that are high density (cities) and low saturation (few churches). This strategy has led them to focus on two areas, India and Brooklyn, NY.
The main challenge that StoneBridge is facing currently is space. They have the wonderful problem of too many people and not enough room. They made the decision a few years ago to delay building facilities and give to planting churches. Keep Rick and his staff in your prayers as they continue to reach their community for Christ and reach out to India and Brooklyn as well.
Southlake Presbyterian Church
Wade Malloy and Ron
The next stop was in Huntersville North Carolina, Southlake Presbyterian Church is located here. The senior pastor is Wade Malloy, who planted this church in 1991.
Southlake’s primary ministry is their Christian school. The school serves as a tremendous outreach to the community. Wade shared several stories of the students coming to Christ and then getting their parents involved in the church. There are 890 students in grades K-12.
Southlake also has a strong ministry in Peru, where they have gotten involved in planting churches and ministering to street kids. Southlake has plans to plant a church in Statesville, NC.
Pray for Pastor Wade Malloy and Southlake as they minister to the students and their community.
We began this journey on September 12, the goal is to visit 40 churches around the U.S., that Spanish River Church has partnered to plant. This will involve travelling some 14,000 miles and visiting 36 states over a two month period.
Miriam and I left our home on Monday morning and are now three days into this journey. Our first stop was Stuart, Florida, where we visited with David Richardson of Treasure Coast Presbyterian. David has been serving as the senior pastor of TCPC for only 3 months. He has recently started teaching his first membership class and is excited about where he is taking his people.
David and his wife Christy have two daughters. They are experiencing all the challenges of a young family with the added responsibility of leading a growing congregation. Please pray for David and Christy has they struggle with time, and the ever growing needs of the Church.
That’s all for now, we will catch up on the postings later today.