iReporter
 
7
8
11
5

 

Services are 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. Sunday, March 26, at Anchor Church’s new home at 3921 Community Ave., in McKinney’s growing Bloomdale area. More than 1,000 members are expected to attend opening services. 

It’s the first phase of an $11.5 million project. The new, 26,200-square-foot church has seating for 600 people and capacity for 150 children. Construction began in March 2022.

 

MCKINNEY – Members of Anchor Church in McKinney will celebrate in their new home beginning Sunday, March 26. It’s the first phase of an $11.5 million construction project, including the 26,200-square-foot church.

Services at the non-denominational church will be at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. at 3921 Community Ave., near the new Collin County Courthouse. 

“We will honor God and welcome people into an atmosphere where they can experience him,” said Jeff Jenkins, Anchor’s senior pastor and a McKinney resident.

The church includes 600 seats and capacity for 150 children. There’s also room for middle school and high school students, college students and adults to meet in small groups and host events and for administrative offices and a media production studio.

“We believe more people are moving toward things that are real, genuine and simple today,” Jenkins said. “We want to help people experience a simple yet deep, rich and lasting hope in Jesus Christ in the context of authentic community.”  

The second phase, which church leaders could begin planning this year, will expand Anchor to 55,000 square feet and will include room to host more than 1,300 adults and more than 400 children per service. It will include a preschool for 270-300 students and more space for global missions and outreach. The next phase will include additional land for a community outreach center and a university for missions and establishing other churches. Construction will likely begin in a few years, Jenkins said.

Anchor has more than 500 active members, drawing most from Collin, Denton, Grayson and Cooke counties. Jenkins said some members come from as far away as Hopkins County and southern Dallas County.

Its teen membership is particularly strong, Jenkins said. A lot of student athletes and coaches attend Anchor.

Anchor also merged recently with the former The Ark Church in McKinney, a predominantly African American congregation. Charles E. Bethany Jr. of Aubrey, Ark’s founding senior pastor, now is active as Anchor’s pastor of prayer and outreach ministry and more than 80 other former Ark members attend Anchor too. 

“I felt that the Lord was calling for the church at large to repent, unite and go do the work of the Kingdom,” Bethany said. “In 2022, through supernatural circumstances, God gave The Ark Church an Anchor and it’s been a beautiful amalgamation.”

Bethany will be part of a prayer service at 6 a.m. Sat., March 25, at Anchor to officially dedicate Anchor’s new building. Anchor, partnering with Anna-based nonprofit Above All Things Dream Foundation, also will distribute hot meals and bags of food to those in the church parking lot from noon to 2 p.m. Books and household items also may be distributed.

About 80 Anchor members first met informally in McKinney in early 2015, and the first official service was Sept. 27, 2015, at the Sheraton hotel in McKinney. Members began raising money for a permanent church home almost immediately.

“From the very beginning of Anchor, members, friends and partnering churches have generously and sacrificially invested in the vision,” Jenkins said. “All of our resources have come from God through the generous members of Anchor and friends in our community. We are not a part of a denomination and do not have an outside church funding or supporting our efforts financially.”

Anchor members met at Cockrill Middle School in McKinney after Sunday morning services were halted for 22 months when its previous meeting site, Faubion Middle School, closed during the height of COVID. Anchor also held Sunday evening services at Hope Fellowship Church in McKinney for a while too.

“Anchor Church is truly a miracle story,” Jenkins said. “We did not know how we would make it during 2020. A faithful group of believers stayed deeply loyal to the core and sacrificed tremendously to persevere through a time that was truly crushing for us.”

Anchor is attracting more congregants today. Attendance grew 75 percent in the last three months thanks to word-of-mouth and Anchor’s online marketing efforts.

Members donated enough money for Anchor to purchase 8.2 acres in July 2019 from Jim Jr. and Nedra Williams and A.J. and Gloria Reed; the families also donated 2.7 acres to the church. They will attend services March 26.  

“We will share the beautiful story of their faith and generosity to Anchor Church and so many others,” Jenkins said.

Jim Williams Jr. is founder and chairman of LandPlan Development Corp., a land development company. Jenkins said the families want to see the Bloomdale area grow. LandPlan is not involved in Anchor’s construction.

Bloomdale is a road in front of the courthouse that stopped at Community Avenue for many years. When Anchor Church bought the land, the purchase opened up the expansion of Bloomdale toward the west. Today, there is new development in that region of McKinney, including homes and businesses.  

BGW Architects (Building God’s Way) designed the church. Crossland is the general contractor.

Anchor plans to expand its current facility and to purchase an additional 10 acres of land for a Dream Center in the next five years, Jenkins said. Such centers are focused on providing support to those affected by homelessness, hunger and a lack of education, and they provide both residential and community outreach programs.

There also are preliminary talks to add a missions university to serve as a global church multiplication training center at some point, he said.