New Harrisonville church expands

bbashioum@demo-mo.comApril 18, 2014 

Eagle Creek Church in Harrisonville recently moved into a new location within Mill-Walk Mall.

BETHANY BASHIOUM/DEMOCRAT MISSOURIAN

A quickly growing Harrisonville congregation is causing the walls to move at Eagle Creek Church.

For Campus Pastor Chad Fagerland, that’s OK.

“Our goal isn’t necessarily to grow numerically,” the pastor says. “Although that is nice, our goal is to reach people.”

Up until March, the 18-month-old congregation had been meeting at the B&B Theatre Cineplex within Harrisonville’s Mill-Walk Mall since the church was formed in September 2012.

But in recent months, the church was forced to begin looking at other location options as their attendance began to reach the theatre’s capacity.

The church started with about 50-75 attendees in 2012. Since, the church has grown to about 240 attendees, including children, every week.

A road bump facing the church came about as the theatre was wanting to upgrade their seating to recliners, which ultimately reduced the auditorium’s seating capacity from 220 to 95 seats.

“We wouldn’t let the mall limit our growth,” Fagerland said.

The church began to looking for a bigger place to meet, and to their surprise, they found a 3,500-square-feet spot just a few feet from their former meeting spot.

“It was actually a blessing in disguise,” Fagerland said.

In a space next to the Harrisonville Chamber office on the north side of the mall, church attendees donated their labor to rehabbing the former retail space into a 200-seat sanctuary -- not costing the church a dime.

“We have some of the most incredible people who attend this church,” Fagerland said.

The church also recently launched into two Sunday morning services in March that meet at 9:30 a.m. and 11 a.m.

“We’re not interested in seeing people come from other churches,” he said. “We have a real heart to reach people who are not in church, unchurched, or who have quit going to church.

The Harrisonville church was launched after Eagle Creek Church in Lee’s Summit decided to expand to include a second campus in Cass County.

The Lee’s Summit congregation was founded by Matt Harris, a Harrisonville native.

But before Eagle Creek opened a campus in Cass County, a significant percentage of attendees of the 750-member Lee’s Summit congregation resided in the Harrisonville area.

Church leaders saw an interest to offer a similar style of worship in Cass County.

“Our No. 1 mission as a church is empowering people to become everything that God created them to be,” Fagerland said. “That’s our heart, vision.”

The non-denominational church seeks to reach younger adults and families through upbeat worship music and relevant, but very biblical messages.

“We do not water down God’s word,” Fagerland said.

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