Raleigh, NC — Construction is complete and worship services are now being held in the new 90,000-square-foot Hope Community Church at 821 Buck Jones Road in West Raleigh. But church services aren’t the only things happening at this unique church.
The “Common Grounds Café” sits just inside the atrium entrance serving up Starbucks Coffee and other unique specialty drinks and treats. Also in the atrium area, which itself is a sort of “main street” complete with streetlights and benches, sits “The Gathering Place,” a cafeteria-style eating area serving up hot lunches and hot breakfasts to the Sunday morning crowds.
Inside the main auditorium, the 1,500 stadium-style seating worship center resembles a professional theater venue, designed to support ongoing in-house theatrical presentations, music offerings, and guest artists and speakers.
For Sunday services, this room displays three 11′ x 20′ HDTV mounted screens displaying the words and graphics to songs sung during the services as well as weekly announcements, scripture and other relevant info presented by the pastor during sermons. A band leads the congregation in contemporary praise and worship, with dramas, music videos and more all a regular part of the Sunday morning worship experience.
For weddings, funerals and other smaller gatherings, a 270-seat chapel is available.
In the college lounge, an area is equipped with washers and dryers to provide students with a place to hang out, study and still get all that college laundry done.
The student ministries areas, comprised of middle and high school ages, feature Xboxes and Playstations, foosball and other game tables, a stage for youth services and bands, a food and refreshment area, an outside patio, and other unique items designed with today’s teens in mind.
For the even younger set, “KidCity” is replete with large nurseries for babies and toddlers in a uniquely designed area known as “Starry Streets.” Just down the hall, preschoolers make waves in “Splash Harbor,” while the elementary grades get busy in “Action Alley.”
Explains Senior Pastor Mike Lee, “Our purpose in building a church like this is to reach people who have rejected church or who have never even been to one. We don’t change the Gospel message; we just change how we go about getting people in the doors so they can hear that message.”
And there’s no doubt that Lee is still a big draw to the worship services at Hope. A pastor for over 25 years, he is well known for his dynamic, relevant and insightful Bible-based teaching.
Hope is an interdenominational church founded in 1994. It has grown from the 30 people who attended the first Sunday to the more than 3,000 now attending on any given Sunday morning.
Grand Opening Celebration — February 5th
Hope will host a grand opening celebration—“New Step, Same Journey”—during both Sunday morning services on February 5. In addition to the special service elements planned, visiting professional graphic artist and illustrator Tom Clark will paint live on stage on a 6′ x 10′ wall canvas as the Sunday services unfold around him. Service times are 9:30 & 11:15 AM.
For more info about Hope Community Church, visit their website at www.gethope.net or call 532.0620.
Information Sheet — January 2006
Started in 1994; first Sunday attendance of 30
Current Sunday attendance averages 3,000+
Church has occupied four different Cary locations prior to current west Raleigh home
One small corner of parking lot still sits in the town of Cary
Building occupies 89,034 square feet
Facilities sit on 7.2 acres
Current staff includes 26 full and part-time staff
Church affiliation is interdenominational
18 multi-restroom areas
Shower areas for men and women
Three washers & dryers in laundry room
8,400 light fixtures/bulbs
Common Grounds Café sits 30, serves Starbucks coffee, and has wireless internet access
The Gathering Place cafeteria-style eating area sits 200, serves hot & cold breakfasts & lunches
Large screen for PowerPoint and satellite feeds
Welcome center and atrium include six LCD panel TVs
Room set aside for future bookstore
Theater-style auditorium opened January 2006
Stadium-style seating capacity of 1,500
State-of-the-art digital sound and computerized lighting
Three mounted 11’ x 20’ HDTV video screens
Video control/editing suite w/14 flat panel displays, production broadcast switcher, three Macintosh G5’s
Green room with dressing rooms for actors, musicians, vocalists, and guest artists and speakers
270-seat chapel used for weddings, funerals, and small seminars/gatherings
Two large wall-mounted screens for PowerPoint, satellite and DVD feeds
McDonald-like play area with seating areas for children’s birthday parties and other events
Includes laundry room with washers and dryers
Seats 400, stage, full lighting & sound booth
Two large wall mounted screens for PowerPoint, satellite & DVD feeds
Foosball tables, air hockey, pool table, ping pong table
Tiki Hut area & kitchen
Xbox and PlayStation systems, big Screen TV, computer system, portable sound system
Outside seating/gathering area
Separate nursery, preschool, elementary learning environments (Starry Streets, Splash Harbor, Action Alley)
Preschool and elementary areas include stages, stage lighting, sound systems, and PowerPoint capabilities
Software program specially designed for Hope to aid with security of children check-in/check-out on Sundays
Three high-tech, multi-purpose rooms seating 70 adults each; can be divided into smaller areas