Conference Targets Las Vegas for Church Planting Activity

Post a Comment » Written on July 7th, 2009     
Filed under: News
CONCORD, CA (July 7, 2009) – The Pacific Southwest Conference is pursuing plans to plant the first Evangelical Covenant Church in Las Vegas, Nevada.

“We are a “missional church,” and we simply have a spiritual responsibility to join other Christian sisters and brothers already living in the region in bringing the gospel of Jesus Christ to this spiritually dark community,” says Wayne Carlson, conference director of church planting.

The Las Vegas region is a part of the Pacific Southwest Conference and has been one of the fastest-growing metro areas in the country for years, Carlson notes.

“The pervasiveness of ‘The Strip’ and gambling makes the soil for church planting hard.”

“Home to approximately two million people, more new churches are needed to bring the good news of Christ to this region that has experienced rapid growth in recent years and is becoming increasingly diverse ethnically,” Carlson says. “The Hispanic community alone represents nearly one quarter of the region’s total population.”

The U.S. Census Bureau released population estimates last week showing North Las Vegas to be Number 19 on a list of the 25 fastest-growing large cities in the country.

Despite that growth, Carlson says, “Less that 10 percent of the population attend a Bible-based Christian church on any given weekend, and that percentage is declining steadily.”

A city with an advertising campaign touting “What Happens in Vegas, Stays in Vegas” presents unique challenges and opportunities, he observes. “The pervasiveness of ‘The Strip’ and gambling makes the soil for church planting hard,” Carlson adds.

The city has been suffering economically, however, and the housing market has been one of the hardest hit in the country. Traditionally, people have explored faith issues more intensely during such times, he suggests.

Carlson would like to talk with Covenanters and others living in the Las Vegas region who are interested in learning more about the conference’s plan for church planting in the region. He can be reached through email.

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