WHITE LAKE — There is an air of anticipation at White Lake for this weekend as a new church campus is about to open its doors and welcome folks into a worshipful experience on the shores of the crystal lake Sunday at 8:32 a.m.
The new church will be housed at The Venue (formerly Crystal Beach) at White Lake, which is located between the Regal Resort and Goldston’s Beach. It will be a second campus of the Dublin First Baptist Church, said the Rev. Cameron McGill.
“I want people to understand that this will be a Bible preaching, teaching church complete with strong music,” said McGill.
The worship service will begin at 8:32 a.m. each Sunday and McGill said the significance of the time is a reference to the scripture John 8:32, which reads, “Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” He added that the worship service at the main campus of Dublin First Baptist Church will begin at 10:10 a.m.
Besides the Sunday morning worship service, the two campuses will come together at the main campus in Dublin on Sunday and Wednesday nights for activities, fellowship and worship, said McGill.
“It is unusual in Bladen County (to have two church campuses), but it’s common in larger towns,” said McGill.
The worship service will be a casual, come as your are service.
“People will literally be getting off their boats (to come to worship),” said McGill.
He said the vision for the lake church has been one that has been growing for a number of years as the congregation at Dublin First Baptist discussed and prayed about how best to reach those in the county that are unchurched. At the time there was no venue available. McGill said that even though the church takes part in Operation 19k events and holds other programs, they felt they weren’t reaching as many folks as they should.
“Then God called my heart,” said McGill.
He said he was reminded of the scripture lesson that everyone is called to be fisher’s of men.
“A good fishermen knows you can’t just go out in the boat and expect to catch fish … . A good fisherman figures out a strategy,” said McGill.
“We feel like by going to the lake, we can reach a lot of unchurched people at the lake,” said McGill. “We’re very excited. This is something that is kind of fresh.”
McGill said there are three groups of folk sat the lake and in the surrounding communities they how to reach out to: the year-round residents of the lake, those who have homes and spend the summers and weekends at the lake and vacationers to the lake.