By Kent E. Fillinger
What a difference a new home makes! Legacy Christian Church of Senoia, Georgia, started in March 2009 with a core group of 59 believers. Legacy met in an inconveniently located elementary school for three and one-half years. The church desired a permanent home and looked for an existing warehouse or storefront to meet its needs. The church”s leaders looked at 66 different properties but couldn”t find one with the right combination of space and parking.
Eventually God opened the door to a great 20-acre property two counties away.
The new location had excellent visibility from a main road and was on the edge of a growing subdivision. Through the generous giving of its 180 members, the church paid $400,000 in cash for the property.
As the church prepared for its first service at the site, set for July 8, 2012, senior minister Roy Roberson admitted he was unsure how many chairs to set up in the new facility, which could accommodate 425 people. Legacy Christian did no mass marketing to promote its first service, but it did run several radio spots on a local station. The church welcomed 630 people to that first service.
The church”s average attendance increased 90 percent to 356 in 2012, making it the second-fastest-growing medium-size church in our survey. As this profile was being written early this year, Legacy was averaging 500.
Roberson came to Legacy two months after its launch and was the only staff member for four months until he hired a full-time youth minister. Three additional staff members started part-time before transitioning to full-time. Legacy emphasized volunteering from the beginning, and its people responded. A key to its success is the church helps people identify their gifts, and then allows volunteers to focus on a specific ministry. The church also tries to avoid stretching people too thin.
Legacy uses the same blended worship style in both of its services. Roberson said some ministry colleagues have told him a blended style of worship doesn”t work, but he said it”s working for Legacy. The fastest-growing demographic in the church is young married couples with children.
Legacy”s mission is to build completely committed followers of Christ; the church identifies a committed Christ follower as one who learns from Jesus, lives for Jesus, and loves like Jesus. Legacy”s vision is to be a church of prayer and praise, and Roberson also envisions a cross-generational and cross-cultural church.
Legacy is involved in local outreach and hosts an annual 5-kilometer road race. The church is also invested in global outreach, giving 12.5 percent of its budget to missions. The church”s first international missions trip is scheduled for this year.
Roberson said the church is starting to “catch its breath” after the recent growth surge, and is working to assimilate its new members into the culture of the church. Roberson said the church continues to focus on preaching the Bible and being faithful to its teachings while maintaining its welcoming approach.