For nearly 12-years CrossHope Chapel was an informal, simpler expression of church, where one could encounter the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, engage others in authentic New Testament fellowship, and be encouraged through the verse-by-verse study of the Bible.
It was a nondenominational church fellowship that began meeting on January 6, 2011, as a casual gathering on Sunday morning in a community room of the Ryan’s Restaurant on Rangeline Road near I-10 in Tillman’s Corner, Alabama.
The manager allowed us to use the room at no cost if we ordered their buffet breakfast, which we did and enjoyed, but after several weeks we all seemed to have gotten our fill of that buffet.
We soon moved our meetings to my home in west Mobile, Alabama and after one year we leased a retail office space on Schillinger Road South. In 2016 we moved to a bigger location on Lifeline Court near the intersection of Airport Boulevard and Snow Road in west Mobile, Alabama.
Our season of church ministry will end in August 2022, following the COVID pandemic’s negative impact on our attendance and my return back into hospital chaplaincy that includes a move across the Bay.
The model of CrossHope Chapel was taken from work being done in Mesa, Arizona by a Southern Baptist minister in planting small informal discipleship-focused church gatherings that successfully reached people who had walked away from traditional congregations.
In fact, we started as a North American Mission Board church start but declined official affiliation with the Southern Baptist Convention because of our polity differences and later we affiliated with a Calvary Chapel network of churches.
The season of church ministry, from 2011 to 2022, was very meaningful and outside-the-box from the traditional congregations I had previously served as pastor. However, for all who have found grace growing in Christ through this fellowship, I am “confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ” (Philippians 1:6).