I’m not sure we have another church like Mars Hill Rainier Valley, where the lead pastor can jump on stage to rap while the worship team plays “How Great Thou Art” in the background. Thankfully, Pastor Willie Wilson is talented enough to pull it off.
Pastor Willie leads the church in worship.
The Executive Elder Team recently had the opportunity to visit Rainier Valley, a church that radiates happiness and passion. They have a great leadership team, and it’s quite clear they’re excited that Pastor Willie is there to lead. In one of the most diverse ZIP codes in the United States, people are meeting Jesus and lives are being changed by him. Women in the front row, many of whom live in the nearby battered women’s shelter, told us they love Mars Hill because they know the men at the church won’t mistreat them.
A unique mission
The main point I wanted to get across as I spoke to the church was they should be encouraged. Amazing things are happening and people from all over the country are joining in their excitement. The previous week, people sent in checks from North Carolina and Texas to help support the work at Mars Hill Rainier Valley. I’ve visited to a lot of large churches in the last year and none is planting churches in urban centers like the Rainier Valley.
Pastor Dave gave an update on each of our churches and taught that multi-site churches are not unique. Paul had the equivalent in the New Testament as he planted a church, moved on to the next city, but continued to write them letters and keep them connected through fellow workers like Timothy.
Deep care and a father’s heart
Pastor Mark reminded them how deeply we care for everyone at Rainier Valley. Money from the larger churches at Mars Hill is given to support some of the newer and smaller churches like Rainier Valley. People in our churches are very happy to do this. Pastor Mark also affirmed that he and Pastor Willie both have a father’s heart for their church. He closed his time by saying something we really wanted to communicate to Rainier Valley: “You are well loved and prayed for. Fill your heart with hope for the next season.”
Q&A with Pastor Mark and Pastor Willie
It’s our vision to plant more urban churches like Rainier Valley—all we need are young men to raise their hands for the mission.