Humble beginnings, big ambitions

As the church gained more members, it outgrew two venues, and we now find ourselves meeting in the fairly rugged surroundings of the Kingston Territorial Army Centre, on the banks of the Thames.

As the size of the church has grown over the years, so has its vision. Starting with a focus on a specific area of Kingston, the vision was expanded in response to a prophetic word that provoked us to aim to be a church to serve the whole Borough of Kingston. Small Groups were planted into further areas and more people were reached.

Occasionally it seems that God puts a surprising and audacious goal before his people, lifting our vision to a whole new level. Such an episode occurred for us in 2009 when, at the Together on a Mission conference in Brighton, David Stroud preached on the Old Testament story of Jonathan and his armour-bearer. In response to David’s word, Paul McArdle, an elder at King’s Church, came forward and felt God put it on his heart for us to make a bid for an enormous bingo hall in the heart of Kingston.

Ever since then we have been in pursuit of the bingo hall, a colossal venue able to seat 2,400 people. The church has responded to this incredible vision with equally incredible faith and generosity, and to date over £750,000 has been raised. It has been an amazing journey so far, and we are still in pursuit of this audacious goal.

More recently we feel God has been refining the vision of what we are ultimately about as a church, and we have embraced a new vision statement that we feel captures the heart of our passion: ‘Cherishing His Presence, Commending Him to Others.’

Having Terry and Wendy Virgo come to join us in 2012 has been a further blessing and great encouragement. Together, we are believing for a great church which sends ripples across London and beyond for the glory of Jesus.

Image: 'stock Vintage Bingo Balls' by Lynn Friedman