The Best Church in all of DFW is..
The reason for this post is two fold.
First I have spent and awful lot of time this summer, going to as many different churches around the Dallas Fort Worth area as I could, Often with My friend Jake, or my wife Erin. They Both went with me on the Jamaica mission trip, so it only seems fair they get to sort fo see what began on that trip play out.
Second, I understand there is some big marketing push to get people to go back to church this Sunday or something. I am not sure how helpful that campaign is, but if people are going to be going to church this sunday for the first time in a while.. they might as well go to a good one, that they enjoy and that can keep them awake.
Contrary to the post I am not going to name “one” church that “wins” best church in Dallas. Now dont think this is a cop out. I know full well which one or two I enjoyed attending the most. However, I also learned this summer, that not everyone else likes or needs the same type of church that I do. I have met some people that were SO PASSIONATE about 1500-1800 hymnity I literally thought they were joking. I could not see how anyone could stand that much less LOVE IT to the point of nearly throwing hands.
I am not going to cover too much of the Sunday School, Small groups, Kids programs at all since I really did not investigate those at every church.
So l will instead of telling you what one church I liked best, I will try to tell you what churches we saw did their thing well. and hopefully that will help you find a place that you like really well.
First, best 1500-1800 classic music:
I think thre are two really good ones for this, Trinity UMC at their 11:00 service, and Grace Presbyterian. As I said this is not my thing, but Gehlin Menti at Grace always puts together an awesome musical presentation and is a very talented artist in his own right.
Best Audio visual presentation:
When I think of modern worship audio visual presentation, especially in south arlington one name jumps to mind, Brian Certain. He has been a visionary now at two churches and they are both at the top of their game when it comes to A/V production quality. First United Methodist in Mansfield and St John the Apostle. They both has state of the art visuals and lighting and really feel unlike almost any other established UMC churches in the area. Worth mentioning, Pantego Bible church did the best job of having a very clear small group or 2 or 3 messages that they communicated visually, and it was unified on posters, video boards, in the handouts and on the website, their messaging discipline is comendable.
Most Youthful church:
When I look around and I am clearly one of the older people at a a church, I think that is proabably healthy. That was clearly the case at Connect Church, and at St. John the Apostle. St. John’s also had the most sports teams, and featured social night at El Arroyo.
Best Current Music:
This one had a lot of pretty even competition, First UMC mansfields Saturday band, New Day UMC’s group with Alex Vorst, the praise teams from Pantego Bible church, Irving Bible church and McKinney Bible church, but I think that the crew at Crossroads of arlington (in pantego) is in a category all their own. They are pretty amazing and you should stop by and watch their worship service at least once if you are at all into modern praise and worship music. Also the sound mix there was always top notch.
Most welcoming for a new person:
This was a contest that seems to need a lot of attention most places. The best BY FAR job of helpign new people figure out where they needed to go an literally holding their hand to get them there was Irving Bible Church. They did the best job with signage and volunteers of anyplace we went. They introduced us, got out kids to classes, and walked us there personally. Worth a visit at least once from everyone who works in a church.
Best coffee bar:
I have to throw this in, since of all the places that had “coffee bars” I never saw one that was open after the late service. So there is no winner in the category, just a bunch of DNF. I dont like to take coffee into a service, and I also do not like it too hot or to chug it. So I never want to get coffee and walk into a sanctuary. Hopefully someone will fix that and invite me back 🙂
This one surprisingly was not super tough to grade, there were some clear standouts on the Sunday’s we attended.
If you like the three point style sermons, I think there were two good ones we saw, one at First UMC Mansfield and the other at Pantego Bible Church.
If you like a style that is more “read the bible and provide commentary” then Crossroads of Alrington is really good.
If you just want good solid preaching that is somewhere in between “relevant ripped from the headlines” and bible study, McKinney Bible Church in Fort Worth has been very very good everytime I have gone. I think that is another church that if you can you should visit at least once. Or if that cannot work, their online sermon presence is very good as well.
But, I would be remiss if I did not mention the best sermon of the 20-30 I saw this summer, or for that matter, the best sermon I have seen in maybe 10 years, and that was during the youth service at Epworth UMC near UTA. They put on a youth service every 5th sunday (ie last sunday in a month that has 5 Sundays instead of 4) and the times I have seen their youth present in front of people has always been impressive.
So there you have it, my non-official, not totally complete opinions of the different churches I have seen in person this summer. I hope I presented everythign as fairly and accurately as I could.
The net result for me I there are so many churches doing certain things really well, I would love to keep doing double and triple church weekends all year round. I would love it if some other people did that as well. If you are feeling like you want to go to a church I just wrote about, awesome, I encourage that. And if you feel like you think I should ahve tried one that you like a lot, and want to invite me some Saturday, Sunday, Wednesday or whatever, just send me a note I would love to join you and bring a friend or two along as well.