Emmanuel has always been a reproducing church from its inception. In fact, Emmanuel was started in 1952 and immediately started 5 churches in the first two years. Those churches include Glendive, Forsyth, and Wolf Point—all of which are still meeting and worshipping today. Here is a Great Falls church start story from 1996.
In the winter of 1996 a group of believers in Great Falls, who were looking for something that they had not been able to find in any Great Falls church, approached me. At first they asked if I would be willing to help them start a Bible study. These people had come together from several different church backgrounds and had not discovered a church that they felt comfortable in. As most of the people of Emmanuel now know, I have often been willing to reach out to people or to assist weaker and smaller churches, as well as starting new churches whenever the Lord presented an opportunity.
I agreed to fly to Great Falls every other Thursday to lead them through the Bible Study called “Experiencing God.” (In those days the round trip flight on Big Sky Airlines was $59 to $79) I would leave Billings at 5 pm on Thursday, lead the Bible Study at 7 pm, spend the night at my sister’s house, and return on the 8 am flight Friday morning. I did this for about 6 – 8 months.
At the end of the time, I led these believers to form a church, and introduced them to B.J. Hallmark, who became their pastor. For a while they met at the Heritage Inn in Great Falls. A woman who no longer lived in Great Falls gave the church a prime piece of property in Great Fall’s new retail shopping area. Today that church is known as Crossroads Memorial Church. In 2007 I was invited back to preach for the Crossroads Church and celebrated with them God’s gracious hand in creating a wonderful Bible-believing church in Great Falls.
Emmanuel continues in this legacy. In recent years we have started Crossroads in Bozeman and Elevation in Billings. Now are preparing for a new church start in Gillette, Wyoming. Emmanuel’s fourth pastor was Leo Sullivan. His grandson Don Sullivan—who grew up in Emmanuel—will be the pastor/church starter for Gillette. Join us in praying for and supporting this most recent church start! And don’t be surprised when we say “yes” to share Christ and start a church when the next opportunity arrives.