It’s 7 AM on a chilly, Sunday morning in early February. The parking lot is already filling up at Clements Boys & Girls Club, in Killeen, Texas. As three, 24 foot trailers arrive, Faith Point boldly emblazoned on the sides, people begin getting out of their cars. The trailers pull around to the side of the building to unload. Volunteers dressed in Faith Point t-shirts, suits and dresses, men and women, of all ages, begin to line up to move the carts with all the elements of turning a gymnasium into a modern, mobile church.
Steaming cups of coffee, breakfast tacos and laughter are part of the morning hum. Set-up for service takes about an hour and a half, and you can feel the life as the members all work together to build their worship space. Each volunteer is encouraged to feel a strong sense of purpose as they connect the pipe and drapes, curtains to construct hallways, and create warm gathering spaces, in the large open lobby. The Pastors and staff serve along side the teams that are laying out flooring and setting up lights and screens in children’s church, nursery areas and building a stage and screen for worship service.
Long-term commitment to the community
Faith Point has a 51 year history in the Killeen/ Ft Hood area, one of the ten most diverse cities in Texas, and borders the Fort Hood, Army installation. But transition is change, and change in a church can often mean a decrease in attendance. There’s a plan for that, but so far, Faith Point’s experience has been one of growth. Worship pastor Tyler Hoxworth said, “The people that do come to our church are so much more engaged. There’s more ways to be involved which translates to more ownership of their church. Less people are coming, sitting and leaving because they’re helping to setup and teardown. They’re folding chairs and sweeping and putting up and taking down curtains.”
Video: Pastors Scott & Marsha Hoxworth watch their new mobile church trailers be delivered for the first time.
To facilitate the transition to mobile services and moving from their old building, Faith Point has established offices in a residential neighborhood. They are committed to maintaining the cherished, strong, family-like bonds, that so many of their members experience. “People have really come together. There’s something new and exciting at Faith Point.” Joshua Saffron, Faith Point’s Youth Pastor, goes on to say, “It’s very much a family environment, and it’s something my family is personally invested in.”
Faith Point has a 51 year history in the Killeen/ Ft Hood area, one of the ten most diverse cities in Texas.
Leading through transitions
Scott Hoxworth, Faith Point’s Senior Pastor, has spent the past year working with his staff, leaders, and volunteers, to prepare for Faith Point’s shift to a mobile location. For them, leading a congregation into unknown territory has been done with intention. As a multicultural, multi-generational body, attention was given to all ministries and aspects of the church as they moved forward in their transition. There has also been a solid focus on reaching out to the Killeen community. “We’re in the middle of a mobile change. The [old] building, the property, we have sat on since the early eighties, we recently sold, and now we have bought new property. While the [new] building is being built, we’re meeting in the boys and Girls Club setting up and tearing down every Sunday. And it’s an adventure and it’s a joy,” Pastor Scott, stated.
It takes 25-30 people to make mobile church a reality each week.
Faith Point is planning to meet in a rented location for a year and a half or more. It takes 25-30 people to make mobile church a reality each week. With a volunteer roster of over 70 people, one of the regular staff tasks, is creating the work schedule. The set-up and tear-down teams are part of a rotating schedule, so the teams aren’t overworked. There’s a weekly invitation to join the setup/ teardown teams and participate in the process of making things happen. After launching with 250 chairs on the floor, Faith Point is fully expecting to add additional seating in the near future.
Creating a familiar environment in an unfamiliar place
Entering the front doors, everyone passes and greets the employees of Clement’s Boys & Girls Club (assigned to be at the facility) then enters the converted space. Black drapery has transformed cinder block and linoleum construction. Gone is the children’s art and motivational posters, in its place a sleek and welcoming common area. A diverse church community greets you, laughing together, some praying off to one side and enjoying each other’s company over donuts and coffee.
“It’s a different feel to service, but the Jesus is the same. In the end, it’s not about where we meet, it’s about coming together.”
You can feel the excitement and expectation as service time approaches. Once the countdown begins, the music is heard in the common area and people quickly line up to enter the gym/ sanctuary. One member stated, “It’s a different feel to service, but the Jesus is the same. In the end, it’s not about where we meet, it’s about coming together, with our church family, to worship the Lord.”
Video: Watch the FaithPoint team transform a Boys & Girls Club gymnasium into a sanctuary.
In the generation of churches in movie theaters and other non-traditional venues, mobile church feels like a daring way to do church. And the congregation has accepted the vision the Lord has given the pastor, even though it meant changing how service is run every week. As one member stated, “I didn’t think it would be hard I just knew it would take some time to get a routine down, especially when it comes to the kids,” she goes on to say, “the home/church is in the people not the location.”
Long-time members, some of them elderly, who may have had a sentimental connection to the former location and building have been supportive and involved. “I was curious about a mobile church, I had never heard of it before. I was never nervous about not having a building anymore. I am at the present time enjoying the journey and looking forward to our next chapter,” said Charles Keahy, who has been a part of Faith Point since 1981.
“With this team we can change our community for Christ. I truly feel we are in the center of God’s will and I’m excited for our future.”
Diana, a member for seven years, leads the greeting team. She had her concerns, but has been pleased to see each week, the transition becomes smoother and setup and teardown become more efficient. “It [mobile church] causes members to rely on each other and work in unity, which builds a strong team. With this team we can change our community for Christ. I truly feel we are in the center of God’s will and I’m excited for our future.”
One thing is clear at Faith Point, they are working toward, and expecting to continue, ministering the healing power and love of Christ, to one another and the people of their community. Pastor Scott said, “I think that’s what our main mission is, it’s to let the love of Christ help us do life together.”
To learn more about Faith Point, a member of the Fellowship Network, go to www.faithpoint.church or call 254-699-5231.