After three months of prayer and planning, we held our first worship service on January 14th at the Parnell Memorial Library in Montevallo. Our core group consisting of ten adults and six children attended the service and we also had our very first guest.
The theater wasn’t complete on the 14th, so we held worship in one half of the conference room and used the other half for the children’s ministry. Our group shared the Lord’s Supper and experienced an incredible time of praise, preaching, and fellowship.
We moved worship into the theater on January 28th. We could not ask for a better place to meet. The theater has ample room for us to grow (140 seats) without making us feel overwhelmed with emptiness. The stage and sound system were incredible. We are very blessed because we haven’t been forced to purchase any expensive sound equipment. The projection system was unfinished at this point, so we used a portable screen and projector to view the lyrics and sermon notes.
February 11th was a special day in the life of our church. We called Garland Stansell as our Worship Leader and welcomed his wife Anne and son Oliver. We experienced a wonderful time of worship and sensed God’s presence in a powerful way.
We also began our Wednesday night prayer meetings at a home in Alabaster. We have been meeting at 6:30 pm for fellowship and prayer from 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm. We have been using Sunday nights for small group Bible study and fellowship. We have been meeting at 5:00 pm and spend an hour discussing the morning’s sermon and an hour for supper and fellowship. The children participate in a Bible study and join us for fellowship.
We are continuing to prepare for our first public service on Palm Sunday, April 1st. We now have all the major pieces in place. Our music ministry is on the move and we are worshipping in the theater with sound and video projection. Our children’s ministry is in full swing with an excellent curriculum called “Living Inside Out”. This fun time combines high-energy, fun-filled large groups and authentic, relationship-building small groups to inspire kids to live out their faith everyday, everywhere… in front of everyone.
Our core group is also working hard to provide a warm and inviting place for guests to visit. Our hospitality team serves hot coffee and wonderful snacks each Sunday morning. It’s been fun to experience the close fellowship that comes from being a small church, but we look forward to the day when we see many more people come through the front door!
We have had the privilege to share in three baptisms since we’ve begun. God continues to show us that He is in control as He works in our lives and opens doors of opportunity in the community. We are looking forward to exciting days ahead!