Good day everyone :). I hope you all had an awesome weekend and e everyone is refreshed for another week of school/work.
I had a pretty awesome weekend just hanging out in South Bend. I stayed home and watched Simpsons episodes, slept in on Saturday, and, of course, ate food :). But what about Sunday?
Sunday morning, my cousin and I woke up and went to the 11:30 service at GCC, also known as Granger Community Church.
GCC is a mega church with I’d say around 5 to 7,000 members, with swells of people into the 15,000’s during important Christian events such as Easter or Christmas.
They have two campuses, one in Granger (Main building) and one in Elkhart. I’ve only been to the Granger building so I don’t know anything about the Elkhart campus and how they operate, if they stream in video from Granger or if they have their own pastor there. If anyone from GCC reads this, please comment. I’m curious as how the Elkhart campus is operated.
The Granger campus is very easy to find, being in a centralized location with restaurants and hotels nearby. The Granger campus has multiple entrances so getting in and leaving can happen quickly and efficiantly. Once you pull into the driveway, one could easily become confused and believe they have pulled into a mall parking lot. Fear not, everything is clearly labeled. My roommate just followed a couple cars upon entering the parking lot. There is overflow parking available on the property for those busy times of the year. After seeing how big the parking lot was, I was concerned about how people with disabilities would navigate a parking lot this size in extreme weather conditions. Then I saw a shuttle van. I assume it took people from their cars to the building’s doors. Again, please comment if anyone knows differently.
I’ve heard a lot about GCC from some friends of mine at Calvin College and I knew what to expect in the service, but I knew nothing about the building and where to go when you entered the building.
I was surprised, for a mega church of that size, to find the sanctuary easy to find. It’s right in front of you as you enter the sliding doors. I have uploaded a video to YouTube of the “sanctuary.”
As you can see from the video, the sanctuary is really large. And the stage…well, I don’t think I need to say much. Upon walking in, I thought of the sanctuary more of a concert hall than a place of worship. I was proven wrong though. I still felt the praise and worship of the music and I didn’t feel like I was at a rock concert. The music is lively and energetic. The pastor was humorous and was very expressive in tones, voice, and facial expressions. His stories were relevant to the sermon topic as well. I also like the references to pop culture. The sermon title was #FAIL. For those of us on twitter, we know what #FAIL is :). And this church encourages people to use Twitter during the service, as GCC is a member of YouVersion, a website dedicated to churches that offer online notes. It’s a very powerful service and, yes, there is an iPhone app for that! 🙂
I was happy to be in a friendly place, worshiping with enthusiastic believers, and having awesome worship music accompanying a well-done sermon. Below are some pictures I took during service.
As you can see, this church possesses a lot of awesome technologies. Their giant monitors make things easier to read for people with low vision. See the pic below to see what I’m talking about.
I apologize for the blurriness of the lyrics. The video backgrounds on the giant screen were effecting my camera focus. Speaking of the video backgrounds, here is a pic of a video background. They flow with the music, almost like an iTunes visualizations.
Again, I apologize for the blurriness. And the last pic I have is of the announcements done via video. Nothing special here, but you can see how they split the video on the giant screen.
Their announcements video is called The Feed. It just tells the congregations what’s going on in the church and informs people how they can get involved.
As you can see, I had a great time at GCC. I would appreciate feedback/comments from people who are members at GCC and what their experiences have been like.
But there is one last thing I wish to mention. Regarding the kindness and warmness of people, there is one other church were I get that…and that is my home church called Sunrise Ministries in Michigan. I felt like I was in a mega Sunrise Ministries service.
If you want to learn more about GCC, click here.
GCC has a YouTube channel as well.
GCC partners with YouVersion as well, a digital web Bible reading service where you can do lessons and follow along with the sermons. Click here to go to GCC’s YouVersion page.
There are plenty of ways to get in touch with the people at GCC.
I hope you found this enjoyable and will try GCC if you’re in the South Bend area.
There is an online campus as well where you can watch and participate in the worship service. The online services start on Sunday night at 6:30 and 8:30 PM. Watch at live.gccwired.com.