Our family jumped in with both feet when invited by Former Campus Pastor Jason Williams to be part of the new campus in the Murphy/Sachse/Wylie area. We had heard rumors for years that the next campus would be in our community. When it became a reality, we were thrilled! It was about three-and-a-half years ago when our journey began.
Sometimes, I wonder, how did time fly by so quickly? Honestly, it feels like it was just a year or so ago when we started having church at the B&B Theatres.
544 Campus: The Beginning of Our Journey
The beginning of our journey began in January of 2015 when Chase Oaks Church launched the Woodbridge Campus (formerly known as the 544 Campus) at the B&B Theatres to serve the Murphy/Wylie/Sachse community. With the expected growth in this area, Chase Oaks thought it would be a great community in which we could launch a new campus to make a difference.
When the Woodbridge Campus first launched as the 544 Campus, Campus Pastor Jason Williams gave us a vision and got us organized. Of course, meeting in a theatre came with its challenges.
First of all, we had to adjust our service times on Sunday mornings to meet the needs of the theatre. Therefore, we were not always on the same schedule as our other campuses.
Secondly, we had to have a really awesome team to transform the theatres into a place where kids, students, and adults could come as they are to learn about God and to worship. Although it was challenging, it was really fun setting up every other week with the Set-Up Team. My favorite part was getting to know the Powell Family. Eventually, we were able to transform Theatre 10 into a nursery/pre-school in 25 minutes flat!
We also had an amazing Core Team. The Core Team was a wonderfully dedicated group of people who poured an inordinate amount of time and energy into transforming the B&B Theatres into a place of worship week after week! Each person on the team is deserving of a paragraph or two recounting their tireless efforts and contributions, but they only gave me so many words…sorry, guys!
Having Fun in the Theatre
Aside from having fun with our amazing teams of volunteers that made church happen every week, we also enjoyed some perks from the theatre. We had high-backed, comfortable chairs that had cup holders on both sides! We could also enjoy some popcorn as we sat back and watched Senior Pastor Jeff Jones deliver his messages. In Volunteer Central, we also enjoyed breakfast tacos from Fuzzy’s and hot coffee! What a great way to start a Sunday!
Although we enjoyed the comforts and food that came with the theatre, we enjoyed the baptisms even more. It was amazing to see people come as they are and be transformed at our campus in a theatre. It brought happy tears to my eyes to see people being baptized, being transformed, on a stage in front of a big screen. It showed us God can use any place to work in our lives and to fulfill His purposes.
Finding Fellowship Outside of a Building
Since our campus launched in a theatre, we had to get creative about finding time and places to host special events. Sometimes we used people’s houses, local parks, and other churches to create spaces where we could fellowship with one another. For example, we held our women’s luncheon in February of 2016 at New Hope Christian Church in Wylie, TX.
We held Memorial Day picnics at Olde City Park in Wylie, TX. We held barbecues and fish fries in people’s homes (thanks to the Leaches and to the Roubals). Worship Pastor Krista Springstead’s dad caught all the fish for our cookouts!
Furthermore, we found a great place for Student Ministry to call home for a few years: the Murphy Activity Center. For special events for Student Ministry, many of our Chase Oakers stepped up and hosted events and small groups in their homes. Student Ministry Pastor Michael Yeilding (Mikey!) created a space for my teenage sons to grow, serve, and learn more about Jesus!
Impacting Our Community
Throughout our journey, we made a difference in our community. During the 2gether opportunities, the lobby of the B&B Theatres was overflowing with food and people serving in the community! It was such a joy to see the transformation of the ministry of one of our local partners, Amazing Grace Food Pantry, when they obtained their new building.
We loved seeing Hartman Elementary School recognized as a 2017 National Blue Ribbon School. Over the years, we have partnered with Hartman Elementary School to meet the needs of students and parents. At Christimastime, we hosted ToyZone, a store where parents can shop for their children at a very discounted rate. I loved the partnership with Trinity Friendship Baptist Church and Hartman Elementary School to make it happen in our community.
Finally, in April of 2016, a hailstorm hit the Murphy/Wylie/Sachse community. It destroyed homes, making our community look like a war-zone! But we came together to help each other in the aftermath of the storm. Our journey took us to a place where we would find a new home and a new opportunity to help a local church.
Finding a “Fixer-Upper”
In the spring of 2016, Chase Oaks purchased a building—what we call our “fixer-upper.” We bought the building earlier than we needed, but we liked the location, the size of the building, and the price. So, we went ahead and took a chance on our “fixer-upper.” We had amazing people on the journey, who could see the potential of the space.
Since our new location was no longer off 544, we changed our name from 544 Campus to Woodbridge Campus as we started to plan and prepare for our future home.
Little did we know when we purchased the building that we would use it to make a difference before we even moved in. After the hailstorm, local churches were hit hard with a lot of damage. Before we started renovating our new home, we had the opportunity to house Trinity Friendship Baptist Church as they rebuilt their church.
After Trinity Friendship Baptist Church returned to their home, we started our renovations. It took a team of talented people and a lot of prayers to finally get our new home ready. A couple of weeks ago, we said goodbye to the B&B Theatres and moved into our new space.
What We Learned from Our Journey
As we reflect on our journey throughout the last few years, we have learned some important lessons about church and community.
- Doing ministry together is exciting, fun, hard, exhausting, and worth it!
- Having a good leader is so important. We were blessed with two! Former Campus Pastor Jason Williams got us organized and helped us fulfill a vision. Woodbridge Campus Pastor Craig Rush has been a steady hand on the rudder as we land in our new space. It is clear each was divinely selected for the season.
- Change, at times, is hard and uncomfortable, but it’s not our party. It’s the Father’s party. By moving out of our comfort zone, we’ve had the opportunity to live into this Chase Oaks DNA statement.
- Chase Oaks Church is a wonderful place filled with great leaders and people sincerely following Jesus. I love this church and thank God for the privilege of being part of this body of believers.
- With God, nothing is impossible! If you had asked me 10 days ago, I would have said there was no way the building would be finished in time for Easter!! But thanks to our amazing Chase Oaks team, our new space is ready in time. And it looks great!
Looking Foward to a New Journey
As we start a new journey at our new location, we want to thank everyone for making this vision a reality. Here are some special thank-yous from the Woodbridge Campus:
- Thank you to all of our volunteers. We have a tremendous group of volunteers. I love the energy and enthusiasm displayed in each of you!
- Thank you to the Baughmans and Gouglers for your leadership in Established and in LifeGroup.
- Thank you to Dave Duren for keeping us organized and making it all seem perfectly coordinated and synchronized as we moved to our new home.
- Thank you to Executive Director Glen Brechner, Facilities Director Terry Butler, Medco, and the whole team that got our new space ready in time for Easter!
As we hold our first services over the coming weeks, let’s all remember to celebrate and thank God for His amazing blessings! We have such a good Father! He has blessed us beyond all we could ask or imagine.
Come visit our new location for our grand opening this weekend. We look forward to sharing it with you. All are welcome!
To check out our new service times, including Easter services, visit Woodbridge Campus.