A Mall Church That Works

Surprised
I’ve not had great experiences with shopping mall churches, that is, until June 10. It was then I visited Dimond Grace Fellowship. Located on the 2nd floor at the Diamond Center Mall, they offered a great worship experience without the expensive-to-maintain trappings of many modern churches.

They are doing what a few churches are discovering, which is taking church and the worship experience to where the people are, instead of expecting them to come to the church. That’s the real Christian ethic!

Mission Clearly Stated
Dimond Grace’s mission (below) was prominent at the top of their webpage. I had to see this church!
Dimond Grace Fellowship is a growing church with a BIG impact in our community. We do our best to show God’s love, in practical ways. Our Ministry Center, is located on the second floor of the Dimond Center. We average 150-200 walk-in contacts each week and we’re open on a regular basis. Many of these contacts are for prayer requests, encouragement, a cup of coffee or something to eat. We make every effort to take care of both physical and spiritual needs!

Hard to Find–Easy to Like
I was greeted warmly by several individuals when I arrived. Coffee and donuts were laid out for everyone. It was a little hard to find at first because I parked in the South parking lot. They’d indicated a 2nd floor suite number on their website. After meandering around the mostly people-free second floor I found them close to the Northside 2nd floor escalator. Directional signage would be helpful or more explicit instructions on their website might also work.

Great Service
It’s a small space that probably could seat 75-100. There were about 35-40 worshipers this day. Three musicians led the singing with the assistance of friendly Pastor Chris Ball. No songbooks were used and words were projected on a screen. The music was thoughtful, reflective, and theologically sound. Quite the counterpoint to many churches today. They do ask you to stand up and sing for every song, which meant a bit of rising and sitting. After the initial singing and preliminaries, children’s church was announced. The younger of the children went into an adjoining room. The remaining children sat quietly and listened to the service. They each had erasable white boards for drawing and writing. Great idea! I actually enjoyed their brief meet ‘n greet which I normally dislike. They were truly friendly and I was greeted by many.

Sermon Worked for Me
Pastor Ball mostly sat on a stool during his sermon. He also distributed an outline, with scripture references, for the sermon. In the interest of time, he appeared to only cover about half of the references, but it was a well-thought out and engaging sermon. He interspersed his sermon with several excellent DVD short film clips. His style is to call for amen, and frequently. His sermon concluded with prayer at 12:05 making this basically a 1 hour service. I love hearing a pastor dismiss the congregation with the Mizpah and he did not disappoint in this.

Worth a Try
I strongly recommend this church for its warmth, hospitality, music as worship vs. entertainment, and Bible-based message well-delivered.

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