Stories & Wins
There is nothing more powerful than a changed life. Everyone has a story, and every story matters. We celebrate the WINS that are happening through Celebrate's locations and church plants. God is Good!
Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Welcome Center Updates
- Plans are coming along nicely for our new Welcome Center addition. We have a team of architects, engineers, and contractors working on the design details. It is our hope to be ready to begin construction this Spring when the ground thaws. When complete, our new Welcome Center will be nearly 2.3 times the size it is today, providing much needed space for welcoming new guests, building new and existing relationships, carrying out ministry, and yes, family restrooms. Stay tuned for more updates.
- We have an incredible win of one of our K-2 students sharing Jesus and extending and invitation to a teacher at school. Because this girl never stopped inviting her and sharing this hope the teacher has been in contact with one of our Pastors and gave her life to Christ! The Bible tells us to share our faith with others and we have an amazing opportunity each week to pour into our children that they may take it into their community.
- We have had a few parents express interest in helping with the kids during the Christmas concert. This is a great opportunity to get families involved with our ministry, be sure to invite others to join us as we share the hope of Jesus in our community.
- During one of our Elementary services, a leader was reviewing the Bible story with the 5th graders in small group. A couple of the children thought the video made a mistake in the Bible story. The leader and about 5 children all opened their Bible and started studying it together. They all found what they thought was a mistake and found that it wasn’t. It was very cool to see the group really dig into the Word and learn together.
- A parent shared with us that they were having a conversation with their children about what they want to be when they grow up. One of the children said, “I want to be a God teacher”. This is really cool to hear as this child is one who typically has a hard time listening and often times can be a distraction during service. We don’t know what God is doing in the hearts of the children we serve. This is why it is so important to build up and encourage each child, regardless of what we see on the outside.
- We had 6 children brought by their parents to be dedicated this month. This is the beginning of a beautiful partnership between the church and the family as they commit to teaching their children about Jesus. These children are in our environments on the weekends and we have the opportunity to help guide them on their faith journey from the beginning.
- From a team member: “Linda, Riley Peterson’s grandmother, told me that he did a great thing this week by walking his friend home who is a girl. She was scared she would get kidnapped and wanted somebody to walk her home so he did it because it was the right thing to do. She only lives just next door but she came and told me because she attributes it to what we’re doing and kids and all were teaching that he is doing it because it was just the right thing to do.
- Matuk, one of our success ministry students took another huge step this weekend. I looked in the service and noticed that he was fully participating in the large Play It Out activity. I shared this win with his parents and their jaws dropped. They were so happy and could hardly believe it.
(* denotes churches in pre-launch phase)
Brandon, South Dakota
Celebrate Community Church
John & Dayna Semchenko
Launched September 11, 2016
- Our Faith campaign got off to a strong start with 37 families contributing to the vision of purchasing the grass lot adjacent to our property for the purpose of expanding our capacity to welcome guests on the weekend. We have a ways to go, and would ask for prayer that God would continue to move in the hearts of His people towards the vision of kingdom multiplication.
- We had 499 in attendance for our Kids Christmas Concert on Dec. 15th. It was a super precious time of worship lead by our children. There were many precious moments that were captured and shared. We had an incredible celebration of Jesus’ Birthday. Big thanks to Cory Vinz, for his leadership and willingness to serve as he helped us hugely set new speakers and record the concert for our families!
- Kingdom Kids launched in last month with a series of ‘preview’ experiences for parents of preschoolers. This ministry has been conceived and lead by a couple in our church who saw a need, and took action to create a warm and safe place for preschoolers in the winter months. Since there are no ‘free’ options for kids to get the wiggles out in Brandon, this family stepped up to meet it. We are excited to see how God uses this ministry to multiply disciples in Brandon.
- Pray for Pat, Ron, Jane, Judy and the other leaders of Celebrate Recovery. Thanks to Stacy, Richard and all our friends at Celebrate Recovery at Celebrate Sioux Falls. Brandon will be having a Celebrate Recovery gathering beginning Tuesday, January 14th. We ask that everyone would bathe this ministry in prayer as we believe that GOD will use it in powerful ways to set people free from life’s hurts, habits, and hang ups in Jesus name.
- Please continue to pray for wisdom and humility for our staff and leaders as we continue to move forward in God’s plan.
Canton, South Dakota
Sheldon & Jo Hovaldt
Launched September 10, 2006
- Started services in our new facility on Dec. 1st. Thank you Father for kicking doors open for our next steps.
- Last month, we had 12 renewals, 2 first-times, and 4 baptism.
- Our average attendance went from an 8 week average of 42 in October – November, to an average of 51 last month.
- Pray that we carry through with the steps laid before us, as we continue on this journey.
- Pray that as I (Sheldon) go to Liberia, Africa on January 23-29, for a mission trip. Pray that God would keep our team of 6, safe and we would do exactly what it is that God desires of us.
Dell Rapids, South Dakota
Quarry Rock Church
Milt & Maddie Borah
Launched September 10, 2006
- On December 15th, we had one of our highest attended weeks in a long while – 174. It was a very encouraging week.
- I (Milt) have decided that 2020 will be the year for clear 20/20 vision for me, my family and Quarry Rock. Pray that God clears the clutter and really helps me see where He wants me and what He wants me to do.
- Pray that Christian Palmer, our resident will have an incredible time here at Quarry Rock and that he truly benefits from this residency, but also that we will truly benefit from his ministry as well.
Fargo, North Dakota
Wade & Chelsey Coffey
Launched February 3, 2019
- We had several commitments & recommitments to Christ last month.
- There was a great response to a message on giving our lives away like Jesus with many signing up to serve in various areas—namely worship team—including new guests that have committed to being a part of Story Church.
- We had a great Christmas Eve Service with new guests joining us.
- Pray over the process of forming a worship team.
- For a clear, focused vision and breakthrough for 2020 as we grow and develop.
- Over our continued progress towards adoption into the Coffey family, and God’s provision and preparation to move us towards that.
Lake Andes, South Dakota
Celebrate Lake Andes
Jeff & Alane Todd + Rodd & Tylene Holman
Launched September 10, 2017
- On Christmas Eve, we had 55 attendees and reconnected with a number of attenders who had been away.
- We added some regular attenders (Lars and Barb, Lavonne, Micki and Ambrose).
- Praise God for Lavonne, who made a personal decision for Christ!
- That God would use us to help bridge the barriers of race and class in the community.
Monte & Jody Gannon
Launched October 8, 2017
- We dedicated five babies to the Lord.
- We had nine people get baptized, one of which was Mike, who was involved in the theft of our trailer. Not only did he get baptized, but he started serving on our Greeting Team and he’s getting ready to start leading a LIFE Group at his rehab center.
- We had seven people make a decision for Christ.
- Pray that God continually blesses us with opportunities to love His people and lead them to Him.
Marv & Deanna Odegaard
Launched November 2006
- Last month was a good month. We have 10 extra people coming from 2 different retirement parks, who were invited through a personal invite.
- We had a great Christmas Eve service!
- Pray for continued church growth!
San Rafael, Mexico
Celebrate Community Church
Eliud & Brenda Garza
Launched October 14, 2012
- We had 13 people open their hearts to Jesus as their Savior last month.
- Pray for the members of the church that they would seek God more than ever.
Yankton, South Dakota
Celebrate Community Church
Jeff & Alane Todd
Launched April 1 (Easter), 2017
- A LIFE Group launched inside the Yankton Work Release program. These are men who are still in custody of the Department of Corrections but are transitioning to the outside. So far we’ve had eight different guys attend and two of them have consistently attended Sundays too!
- Celebrate Yankton saw a record, 17 first time guests last month.
- 13 people made decisions for Christ and we averaged 45 in attendance in 2019.
- Yankton’s word of 2020 is “GROWTH”, which means numerically but also spiritually and relationally. Our prayer for 2020 is that 200 people would be committed to praying daily for our church and for 100 people would be committed to attending our church. While our average attendance was 45 last year, there are over 100 people who say Celebrate Yankton is their home church.
- For 50 people who will “look up, not around”. We grow most in our faith when we look to God, and serve Him. Pray that these 50 people would be committed to serving God by giving their gifts.
Celebrate Community Church
Carman & Stina VanSchaick
Launched May 2019
- We now have 16 people that are part of Celebrate Missoula. Invitations about joining us are happening weekly by many in the group, and excitement is growing.
- We are beginning the search for our launch site. Pray for direction and favor with that search.
- Pray also for the development of the core team.
- Pray for continued growth, that all who are part of Celebrate Missoula will have a burden for those that are unchurched and have not made a decision for Christ.
- Pray also for courage to initiate conversations.
Charleston, South Carolina
The Grove Wesleyan Church
Brittany & Nathan Jolly
Launched October 2019
- We had 27 at our Christmas Eve service!
- We are so proud of one of our lay leaders would finished her classes for licensing, as well as, being accepted into the ordination track.
- Pray for health for our family.
- Pray for contagious excitement as I (Brittany) cast vision for 2020.