There is no denying it, church attendance and the impact of the church are the lowest in recent history and the most drastic difference is seen among millennials (22-35 years old). According to several studies, 59% of millennials raised in church have dropped out. Thirty-five percent of millennials have an “anti-church” stance, believing the church does more harm than good.
The Life Church (TLC), based in Richmond, Virginia was created with a mission of not being your “normal church”. Launched in July 2012, The Life Church has made it a mission to mold a new culture of humanity and Christianity in the Richmond community and abroad. TLC has become somewhere you can find or rediscover “life” at church no matter your age, background or ethnicity. TLC understands the meaning of worship and serving and the importance of doing that within the walls of the church as much as doing it in the community.
Over the last two years, what started off as a 50 person congregation at Binford Middle School in Richmond City has grown to attract 700 people each Sunday at three services, in two locations (5515 Bryce Lane and Virginia Commonwealth University’s Harris Hall), one location being their own, with over 100 volunteers, with one goal worshipping God and serving the people of God. TLC has supported over 20 non-profit causes, given over $30,000 back to the local community and over 300 spiritual decisions have been made.
“When you’re a part of a community that’s really changing lives and giving back your tithes to the community we serve, it becomes a way to support something greater than yourself and to help carry out the mission.” comments Chaz Hofler, 29 years old. “I moved from New York to Richmond with my family, and now we have a second family and somewhere to call home. I love to give back through tithing to the community I’m a part of because just like a family – we pour back into each other.”
Each month TLC gives 10% of the tithes collected each Sunday to a non-profit or cause in the Richmond community. Through financial stewardship of their church members and visitors, TLC pours into the community.
TLC’s mission says this: “The Life Church exists to impact culture through the innovative presentation of Christianity. With a focus on creativity and compassion we are driven by introducing Christ’s message to the world.” Based on what Jesus Christ said in John 10:9-10, at TLC “we believe that God desires for us to have a fulfilling life in every way. We are committed to transforming lives in the Greater Richmond community and abroad by sharing the ’life-giving’ Love of God and empowering people to live the life God desires for them!”
We strive to build a community of believers who “live the LIFE”:
L: LOVE all people into a life of hope and fulfillment.
I: Re-establishing the IDENTITY of the church within culture and community.
F: To live a life of FAITH in action
E: EMPOWERMENT through the E3 PROGRAM: Empowering people with life skill development that impacts their HOLISTIC BEING as a believer through Education, Entrepreneurship and Exposure
“I never knew how important it was to really be planted in a healthy church – TLC is my answered prayer!”, says TLC’s ministry cohort member, Maiya Marshall, 35 years old. “Not only do I have a great community that I am a part of, but I also get pushed beyond my comfort, gifts unlocked, held accountable and I get to do life with my church family. It is important to be under the right leadership and do life/community together!”
TLC understands the needs to invest in our children at a young age as they provide two ministries to reach our younger demographic.
- Heartbeat (Children’s Ministry) Ages 1-11
- TLCxYouth (Middle & High School Age) 2nd & 4th Sundays at the 11:30 AM service
TLC continues to be a positive impact on the city of Richmond and surrounding communities by giving back. In 2016, they launched the Daily Bread Initiative where they provide book bags of food weekly to 20 students in Boushall Middle School who have been identified as nutritionally high risk students. Also, collectively they have contributed over 500 hours of community service.
Fifth Sunday Outreach
Every 5th Sunday will be an outreach focus of service. The Life Church is committed to reaching the community through giving and service. Every 5th Sunday, instead of traditional service, the TLC Family will be “Touching Lives Collectively” through a community outreach project.
Gift of Hope Week
The “Gift of Hope” week is TLC’s semi-annual outreach campaign dedicated to serving various needs in our city. Gift of Hope is a week of various service projects and activities designed to bring HOPE to RVA. We believe that there is no greater catalyst in life than that of HOPE! Gift of Hope week is held in the fall and spring.
TLC’eize Capital Campaign
The growth of TLC has been nothing but God over the last two years and the hard work of TLC’s congregation to spread the word about the work of our ministry. TLC is in the process of fundraising for their TLC’eize Capital Campaign for their home at 5515 Bryce Lane in Richmond City. If interested in learning how you can be a part of the campaign, please visit www.thelifechurchrva.org/pledge.
“This is just the beginning of creating a place where children can learn and be loved.” continues Pastor Gordon. “A place where friendships can be forged and hope can be found. To connect with people from all walks of life and to build bridges between the communities we live in and the churches we lead. It is our mission to serve our community with an even deeper passion than before.”
For more information, please visit, www.thelifechurchrva.org. Church service times are Sundays at 9AM and 11:30AM at
5515 Bryce Lane Richmond, VA 23224 and 2PM at VCU’s Harris Hall. Both locations are open to everyone.
See you Sunday!
“Here at TLC we are ready to show the world life like they have never imagined, beyond the four walls of the church.” says Gordon.
Photos: Hugh Jones