Our 1st Encounter Service at theWELL

I have not written enough about the great things God has been doing at our new church here in Buffalo called theWELL. Last night we had our 1st Encounter service, which will be a night of worship and commitment held whenever there is a 5th Sunday in the month.

Preparing for the Encounter service was pretty difficult, because I had never done anything quite like this before. We would be incorporating baptism, communion, partnering (membership), and a mosaic wall all into one service.

The service was incredible. I had the opportunity to lead in worship, but I also had the chance to play some fun keyboard stuff, and even worked on the organ for a couple songs. This was so much fun for me! People's lives were being changed right in front of everyone. Mike Laun did an incredible job telling life stories through video, and we showed these videos before each person was baptized.

The Story of Jess Daley from theWELLbuffalo on Vimeo.

The Story of Mike Measer from theWELLbuffalo on Vimeo.

The Story of Suzie Gortig from theWELLbuffalo on Vimeo.

The service was long, but it flew by in a flash. Our facility also hosts theHOPEcenter, which is where hundreds of people come throughout the week for various 12 Step meetings. Outside near the entrance to theHOPEcenter, there are a few smoking poles where many of them stand and smoke before coming in the building. Near the end of our service, I could see out the back windows of our worship center, and I could see a crowd of smokers beginning to form. They had come early to their meeting times, but wanted a quick smoke before going in. It was so exciting to watch their reactions to what they were seeing in the worship center. They were blown away.

In a city that is predominantly nominal Catholic, a church that is alive, vibrant, and authentic is often a shock to the senses. The facility that we are in is a former Episcopal  Church, with only a handful of members. For these people coming to 12 Step meetings, the transformation here has been tremendous. One young woman walked into the service, and came forward to speak with pastor Darrick at the end of the service. She plans to attend church with us Sunday, and get involved with what she sees happening here.

The service is appropriately called "Encounter." It was an incredible night, and I do believe with all my heart that we had an encounter, an interaction, a meeting time with a relational, holy God.

1 comment:

  1. Love it! Great to hear about what the Lord is doing in Buffalo.