ISLAND CREEK, Ky. (KT) – It’s no wonder that Jason Johnson feels right at home at Creekside Church.
It was in that same location in the Island Creek area that he attended Vacation Bible School growing up. In fact, in his office, he still has one of the crafts that he made as a 7-year-old.
“I grew up on Island Creek,” he said. “That’s the name of the road that the (church) building is on.”
Creekside Church will be having its constitution service on Sunday afternoon, marking it as its own independent church after two years of being under First Baptist Church in Pikeville.
“Up to this point, FBC Pikeville has handled all our finances,” Johnson said. “Anything the building needed as far as repairs or whatever the need. As of Sunday, the plan is to transfer the deed to us as Creekside Church and that includes 40-some acres, a 6,500 square-foot building and a smaller building. They’re gifting that to us and some significant funding.”
Johnson is forever grateful to FBC Pikeville in his life. They sponsored a mission church where he attended at another time in his life along with the mission in Island Creek. “They literally have had an impact on me spiritually my entire life,” Johnson said.
He was called to be on the staff at FBC Pikeville in February 2017 with plans for him to take over Creekside Church in Easter 2018.
“That was the original plan,” he said. “We thought it would take at least a year to develop a core team. We started having Bible study and moved so fast and God blessed so much, that we launched that fall of the same year in August 2017.”
God has blessed those efforts mightily as Creekside Church has grown to about 125 in the congregation on average on Sunday mornings and nearly 100 on Wednesday nights when outreach takes place. They also do topical Bible studies on Sunday evenings throughout the year.
“This coming Sunday is kind of like the day we launched on Aug. 20, 2017,” Johnson said. “It’s very exciting.”
The constitutional service will take place at 4:30 p.m. and Steve Rice, the team leader of church consulting and revitalization with the Kentucky Baptist Convention, will be giving the charge to Creekside and the sending church, FBC Pikeville. A reception will follow at 6 p.m. at Pike Central High School.
“The Creekside church plant is unique because they have a strong sending church, in First Baptist Pikeville, that invested financially in their work, along with a strong associational connection, with Pike Association, that supported them as an association of churches, and a strong denominational relationship, through the Kentucky Baptist Convention, that offered additional encouragement and support,” said KBC Executive Director-Treasurer Todd Gray. “Our desire is the see church plants like Creekside multiplied across the commonwealth.”
Now, Creekside Church will be making its own decisions and one of those is looking to become a church planter itself, Johnson said
The church will be taking up an offering Sunday to put I the church planting account to be either a partnering church or a sending church. “Churches plant churches, the track record is there.”
Planting Creekside Church was a step of faith, Johnson said, and it correlated with a life episode.
“We were foster parents at the same time we were going through all this (in 2017),” he said. “We’d adopted a little girl and had a new social worker at the very end and I was not happy about that. Long story short, she started coming to Creekside and I got to baptize her two months after adopting our little girl. It was a step of faith then and a step of faith now knowing God is always faithful to us.”
Gray attended Creekside at its inaugural service in August 2017 when more than 260 were in attendance.
“What I discovered were a lot of those folks were not people looking for new church home, they weren’t planning to join Creekside, but they were folks in the area that wanted to see this church succeed. The Lord is obviously blessing your work. Attendance is strong, giving is strong, and the spirit of the Lord is moving. You all have exciting days in front of you.”
Creekside Church is located at 1576 Island Creek Road. On Sundays, the church holds Sunday school at 9:45 a.m. and worship service at 11 a.m. On Wednesdays, youth services start at 6 p.m. and Bible study starts at 6:30 p.m. Services are also available online and on Facebook. For more information, call, (606)-433-0489, or visit, www.creeksidechurch.net.