Evangelicals Worship (Part 11, South Biscayne Church, North Port, FL)

 

what to expect at south biscayne church

John Cross “Are you blessed or stressed?”

I got this info from the church website:

About South Biscayne Church

We invite you to experience “The best hour of your week.” Come enjoy great up-lifting music, creative videos, and relevant, life-changing messages from our pastor, Dr. John Cross. His talks are designed to help you with real-life issues throughout your week.

South Biscayne Church is a church for everyone. We have an atmosphere that makes you feel like you’re home. Whether you are just checking out this “church thing” or you are a committed Christ-follower, you are welcome here.

South Biscayne Church is a biblically-based church committed to presenting the good news that God has a personal purpose for your life. John, or as the students call him YJC (Young John Cross), presents these truths in creative and compelling ways. We exist to fulfill a very simple mandate: Love God, Love Others & Love Life. We believe that this simple life mantra will revolutionize the way people view their lives. It’s found in the Bible:

Matthew 22:37
Jesus replied, “You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind. 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 A second is equally important: Love your neighbor as yourself.”

John 10:10
“The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give life in all its fullness.”

A Brief History of South Biscayne Church

South Biscayne Church began as the Southern Baptist Mission of North Port, Florida, with a dedication service on October 14, 1973. The history of this great church actually began ten years earlier as God birthed the vision for South Biscayne in the hearts of Mr. and Mrs. George Buchanan. They prayed and sought support for ten years before they led the way in beginning South Biscayne. At its inception, nine people stepped forward and committed themselves to start the church as a mission.

The first Sunday morning service was held October 21, 1973 at the North Port Community Club. Eleven people attended the Sunday School class that day and sixteen attended the worship service.

Rev. W. Adair Ellen was called as pastor on September 15, 1974. After calling Pastor Ellen, the church began holding Sunday evening services in homes until use of the Community Club on Sunday evenings was obtained.

Worship services were very interesting during this time. Hymnals and other items used in the services had to be taken home each week and brought back the next Sunday. Chairs and tables were set up every Sunday for services. Often the piano would have to be moved or floors would have to be mopped to clean up after a party held at the Community Center the night before. The building did not have a sound system, so Pastor Ellen had to speak over the noise of the old air conditioning units and the crickets.

The second Sunday School class began as an outreach to the children waiting for the swimming pool to open at the Community Club. This class was held in the kitchen, so to get the room ready, it had to be cleaned and garbage and bottles thrown out.

In September of 1975, plans were finalized for the purchase of 5.36 acres of land. The first Sunday services were held in the new building on December 19, 1976. At this time, the church had 58 members and 45 people enrolled in Sunday School. South Biscayne was officially constituted as a church on January 21, 1979 and applied for affiliation with the Peace River Baptist Association.

The church recognized the need for more Sunday School space as enrollment grew to 130. An educational building with a capacity of 300 was designed. Ground was broken for this building in May of 1980 and on January 18, 1981 a dedication ceremony was held.

On April 8, 1990, South Biscayne Church affirmed God’s call for John Cross, Jr. to serve as pastor. After several weeks of prayer, God affirmed that same call very clearly in our Pastor’s heart. On Father’s Day, June 17, 1990, our Pastor officially began his service as pastor of South Biscayne Church. At the time, the morning worship attendance was around 100.

The church decided to make God’s priority the focus for His church. The focus shifted to those who were not attending rather than those who were already attending. The church began to pray that God would do something so supernatural that only He could take credit for it. The church focused on prayer and spiritual renewal and decided that they would do “whatever it takes” to share God’s love and reach people for Christ.

The church continued to grow and there was need for more space. In December of 1994, the church purchased the North Port Mall. Church volunteers worked long, hard hours to renovate the mall and turn it into a church building. On September 29, 1996, the first worship services were held in the new location! It was a great weekend! Over the next few years, additional land was purchased to bring the total land owned by the church to approximately 38.8 acres.

Church membership is nearly 3,000. South Biscayne has grown one life at a time as hundreds of people each year are choosing to give their lives to Christ! Over 70% of those who attend South Biscayne do not have a church background and are first generation followers of Christ. God has done so many great things here. He is changing lives daily through this great church. We hope that you will be apart of what God is doing here at South Biscayne as the best is still yet to come!!

ABOUT OUR PASTOR

John Cross is married to his awesome wife Dawn and they are blessed with five incredible kids . . . Courtney, Brooke, Hope, Blake, and Kirk. He has served as Senior Pastor of South Biscayne Church for over 20 years.  During this time, the church has experienced tremendous growth and has seen thousands of lives changed.  His vision for South Biscayne has always been to do “whatever it takes” to reach people in Southwest Florida and around the world with the life-changing love of Christ.  To carry out of this vision, John has skydived, ridden his motorcycle in the worship center, climbed a rock wall, and much more to creatively and compellingly communicate Christ’s love.  He has a heart for this community and this generation.

While leading this exciting church, John earned a Doctor of Ministry degree from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in December 2006.  He has also had the privilege to speak and be involved with churches and church leaders around the world.  His desire is to communicate the love of Christ with as many people as possible.  In his rare moments of free time, John enjoys jogging, reading, and traveling.

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