After many long months of anticipation and delay, due to the virus, City Park Church officially opened its doors on June 21st, Father’s Day. Smiling faces greeted from the parking lot to the front door, while people filed inside, excited to be reunited inside the beautiful 105 year old building with stained glass windows and newly refinished hardwood floors. However it was not the building that brought excitement, rather the opportunity to be together as the body of Christ, worshiping collectively in a shared space, which we can now call “our church.”
The service began with a video of children eagerly explaining why and how much they loved their dads, as many dads were wiping tears of joy. Many dads visited the church for the first time, celebrating Father’s day with their grown children. Not everyone could be in person for service, but those from home shared about their dads on the video as well. It was a sweet reflection of the dedication and love of so many fathers within the church and the fathers who have poured into the lives of those who attend.
Worship began with “God is so Good” as voices echoed throughout the sanctuary and the congregation sang the line “God answers prayers,” a line that couldn’t have been a truer testimony of what God has done over the last year for City Park Church. Pastor Toby was overcome with emotion, as were many others, from hearing the beautiful sound of voices united in song, worshiping their savior.
Pastor Toby continued his sermon series on the life of David “ A Shepherd to a King,” a series he had begun online during the stay at home order. He gave encouragement to the fathers in attendance as well as the rest of the church body, giving a challenge to remember our calling doesn’t outweigh our obedience to Christ. He gave examples from David’s life and his encounter with Saul in the text of 1 Samuel 24. Pastor Toby also reminded the congregation not to let our service within the church be what drives us, but rather the love we have for Christ.
The worship band brought the service to close with the hymn, “There’s Something About That Name.” And Jesus was the sweet name that was given glory for the great day it was to be in worship together in the new building City Park Church could call home. Pastor Toby reflected on the day saying, “It was an exciting day. It was so nice to have everyone inside the building for the first time. It was bittersweet not to have every person there, due to the virus, but it was exciting to see how many were there and to hear their voices singing together in worship. It was an awesome first service.”
City Park Church continues to meet at 10:45 AM on Sunday mornings in the Washington Park neighborhood. We would love for you to join us! Please thank God with us for the great things he has done!
Written by Melissa Pegram