Tag Archives: Pacific Northwest

Growing Spokane Church on Front Lines of Freedom Fight

Pastor Randy Hood preaches at New Horizons Community Church.

By Carl Stagner

The status quo isn’t good enough for New Horizons Community Church. Whether you’re talking about the congregation itself, the progress in the fight against human trafficking, or the condition of their surrounding community, the Church of God congregation on the northwest side of Spokane, Washington, believes God has more in store. So, as they finalize preparations to enhance their fifteen-acre property, they’ve determined not to pull back forces from the front lines of the fight for freedom. Instead, they’re all the more resolved to support anti-trafficking efforts to the point of putting other pursuits on the back burner. Continue reading

A Good Problem to Have: Richland, WA Church Outgrows Current Facility

Construction in the lobby.

By Carl Stagner

In May 2013, we shared the story of a Church of God congregation in Richland, Washington, that tripled its attendance in just four years. The church understood then, as it does now, that God gives growth to his church, but there are a number of things local fellowships can do to attract the interest of the community, while supporting numbers with intentional discipleship and follow-up. For some, the question nearly five years ago might have been, Could such growth—both numerical and spiritual—be sustained? Apparently so. We’ve followed up with Columbia Community Church—locally known as C3—and have discovered they recently encountered a big problem. Their current facility—particularly their lobby and restrooms—are too small for their weekend crowds. Continue reading

First of Three Regional Conventions Kicks Off in Vancouver

vancouver-dates

By Carl Stagner

Reports on the ground indicate that hundreds of Church of God people are making their way to Vancouver Church in Vancouver, Washington, for the first of three Regional Conventions scheduled for 2016. Anticipation is higher than ever for the speakers who will address the convention theme—Reclaim Your Neighbor[hood]—including Milton Grannum, Ben Hardman, Arnetta McNeese Bailey, Steve Arterburn, and Reggie McNeal. Many will also stick around for the CHOG Table on Thursday, as the discussion turns to the timely topic of sexual ethics. The first session of the Regional Convention begins tonight at 7:00 PM PDT with Milton Grannum speaking and Alanna Story leading worship. Continue reading

CHOG Regional Convention Host Church in the Reclamation Business

Vancouver_Church_building_FORWEB

Photo: Outside the beautiful Vancouver Church facility.

By Carl Stagner

“I believe we’re not so much in the church-building business as we’re in the change-the-world business. And furthermore, I believe that we’re not so much in the reformation business as we are in the reclamation business—taking back what hell has stolen.” Jim Lyon’s bold words have set the stage for the three Church of God regional conventions this year, where the theme “Reclaim Your Neighbor[hood]” will be woven into the teaching, dialogue, and worship. Vancouver Church, host of the first of the regional conventions (April 26–28 in Vancouver, Washington), has a rich history of reclamation. As they welcome convention-goers to their campus, they’re excited to share some of the ways God has empowered them to reclaim what hell has stolen—both locally and globally. Continue reading

The Church That Held a Sushi Show-and-Tell

Voyage_Impact_Sunday_Landscaping_FORWEB

By Carl Stagner

Sushi show-and-tell. Milk and Cereal Pajama Sunday. Ugly sweater contests. Awkward family photos. Sound like the calendar for a typical church? The kind of outreach and fellowship activities seen at the Church of God congregation in Bremerton, Washington is certainly the kind that make the culture’s preconceived notions of church dissipate. Voyage is a church of “creative, flexible methodologies” but “inflexible theology.” That’s how Pastor Jerry Michaels puts it. Continue reading