Bringing hope to the Garnet Valley, Chadds Ford, Concord Township, Bethel Township, West Chester, and Glen Mills area.
Hope Church is a community where you can explore what Christianity is about, where you can find hope in Christ, and where you can be equipped to share your hope in every sphere of life. We launched regular services on Easter 2018 and now meet for worship every Sunday at 10:30 AM at the Darlington Arts Center in Garnet Valley.
Where Do Churches Come From?
Most of us drive past church buildings every day and never stop to think about where they come from. In reality, every local church was once new. In church circles, the process of starting a new congregation is called “church planting.” Like the metaphor implies, churches begin with a small seed of people who gather for worship and fellowship but then gradually grow into a mature community.
Many people assume that church plants begin by constructing a building. After all, in English, the word “church” usually refers to a building. Can you have a church without a building? Isn’t that like having a bank without a bank or a store without a store? Actually, most new churches don’t begin with a building but with a community. The Bible never uses the word “church” to refer to a building; the word always refers to a community of people who are baptized into fellowship with God the Father, through Jesus Christ, and by the power of the Holy Spirit. You can have a church without a building, but you can’t have a church without a community. European cities are filled with empty church buildings, devoid of communities to fill them. These structures are churches in the same way a corpse is a person—not at all. For this reason, most church plants don’t begin with a building. Instead, a core group of people gathers for Bible study and vision-casting in a home. Then they leave home and begin renting a community space, such as an arts center, school, movie theater, or storefront. Finally, when they can afford it and the time is right, they construct a building.
Following this pattern, Hope Presbyterian Church launched regular services on Easter, April 1, at 10:30 AM. The seed came from local Presbyterian churches in our region who sent out people to help launch this new work. For the time being, we'll meet at the Darlington Arts Center but are in no hurry to build a building. We want to focus on their central mission, which is being a community where anyone can explore the hope of Christianity and followers of Christ can be equipped to share their hope in every sphere of life.