Our parking lot just got a LOT bigger

A few years ago, we told the story of our church in this video. As I was watching it again with my team today, these words from my senior pastor stood out to me:

“The church isn’t here to get from the community. We are here–sent by God–to SERVE the community. There is something marvelous about the presence of the church where there is light and hope and praise to God. This place? This church? It’s a place were we meet people on their turf. We make it comfortable and give them a safe place to listen to a service and talk a little to a friend. Serving people in that way may be the bridge that brings them from the parking lot to Christ.”

Well, friends. In the past two years, our parking lot has got a LOT bigger. And, that bridge Pastor Beeson was talking about? Well, it’s not just physical anymore. People are experiencing church and building community in non-traditional ways.

  • In one year 151,741 unique visitors visited GCCwired.com.
  • And, they keep coming back. Over 73,000 visitors have visited more than 200 times and over 109,000 visitors have visited more than 100 times.
  • For six months, Facebook and Twitter have been the top referrers to our site.
  • In less than one year, GCCwired has over 1,875 Facebook fans and 1,029 Twitter followers. That’s two more environments that didn’t exist a year ago where people are sharing stories about their faith journey and connecting with others.
  • Last year, 7,223 people connected to GCCwired via a Wii, Xbox, or mobile phone. 1,257 people actually watched a service through one of those devices.
  • Every week, there are more than 2,000 people who watch Granger services online live and on-demand in 44 states and the district of Columbia. Across the world people are tuning in from Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, Chile, Mexico, Spain, Germany, Argentina, El Salvador, Romania, Poland and the Netherlands. We’ve even had people visit from Thailand, Denmark, Brazil, Indonesia, China, Nova Scotia and Greece.
  • In the past three months, people have started sending prayer requests during live events from their mobile phones.
  • Conversation and community is growing around the online bible YouVersion. In the past few months, there have been over 132 contributions, 3,500 tags related to real-life topics and more than 70 people following the conversation around scripture.
  • In the past year, people have watched over 300,000 videos clips from Granger on YouTube and Vimeo (that’s 1 video every two minutes or 821 videos per day).

That’s just a snapshot of today’s reality—there’s not just one way or one place to do church. (I didn’t even mention the thousands of people leading, learning and interacting on blogs!) Even in the Midwest, we are a global, 24-7 community. These aren’t stats, they’re people. It blows my mind and I love it.  

As Communications Director at Granger Community Church, Kem Meyer draws on more than 15 years of marketplace experience in corporate communications and Internet strategy. Before joining the staff at GCC in 2002, she was a marketing specialist at Moody’s Corporation, a billion-dollar credit research and risk-rating company with offices in 18 countries. Read her blog ‘Less Clutter and Noise” at kemmeyer.typepad.com.
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