Kingsland Baptist expanding to second campus in late September

By R. Hans Miller | News Editor
Posted 9/14/20

Kingsland Baptist Church is looking forward to opening a new campus at 24111 Stockdick School Road in Katy Pastor Ryan Rush said. The new campus will be the second for the church which has its …

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Kingsland Baptist expanding to second campus in late September

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Kingsland Baptist Church is looking forward to opening a new campus at 24111 Stockdick School Road in Katy Pastor Ryan Rush said. The new campus will be the second for the church which has its original location at 20555 Kinglsand Blvd. in Katy. Rush said the focus will be on supporting families, especially children.

“Growing up, our house was always like the house in the neighborhood where all the kids came, you know? And it was a safe place and we saw (that) everywhere you turn around here there’s houses built up, but there’s not a lot of church space to hang out, so we’d love to be the ‘house’ in the neighborhood where all the kids come,” Rush said.

Walking into the nearly-finished space, messaging about families is everywhere on one level or another. From an air-conditioned indoor playground that is under construction, a Great Harvest Bread Company location for parishioners and their families to get snacks, to messaging on the walls that promotes family values, the church has laid the groundwork for their mission with the new campus, he said. The church is located near Paetow High School in a group of growing subdivisions that had a lack of churches serving their area, he said. An additional outdoor playground is present and there is a lot of outdoor space to develop as the church needs as the new campus grows from an opening capacity of about 400 to a number possibly rivaling the original campuses church body of about 5,000 worshipers.

Rush said the new church was not originally in the card. Kinglsand Baptist had originally looked at what it would take to expand the existing campus to increase capacity. However, in the long run, it turned out to be more practical to do some less expensive upgrades to that campus and begin looking at a possible expansion of the church. The original campus’ gymnasium was remodeled to accommodate an expanded church body and the idea of a second campus in the Katy area was explored.

Church leaders discussed it and eventually decided to identify a place where there weren’t a lot of churches serving the area and step in to fill that void.

“Rather than going to the same place (through expanding) we wanted to go to a place where we could impact more households,” Rush said.

Having an impact in the community is important for the church, Rush said. The idea is to provide support to single and working parents and show children in the congregation what it means to serve the community. One example is that the church shuts down once a year and has the youth of the church accompany the rest of the church body out to do good works in the community, whether that be painting fences, picking up trash or helping at one of the community nonprofits.

Once the church saw the ideal area they wanted to serve, Rush said they began looking for land to purchase. In the long run, they located the new site, but realized the property was not for sale. Instead of giving up, Rush reached out to the former owners to see what could happen.

“I wrote a letter to them. I shared the vision that we had and we were able to purchase this property in 2015,” Rush said. “And we actually bought 50 acres. … We did that intentionally so that we could sell off a portion to a developer, so not only do they have to cover the development costs but we have great housing for young families and they handle the drainage side.”

The campus remains on 18 acres of land with plenty of room for expansion, Rush said. The campus will start out with a basic capacity of 400, though social distancing protocols the church has set in place will keep that reduced at first. Still, the northern Kingsland Baptist congregation that has been meeting at one of the nearby schools is looking forward to the church’s soft opening Sept. 27 for its first service. Eventually, that 400 base number for the congregation is expected to expand to more than 1,000 attendees. And that’s the point, Rush said.

A grand opening is expected for early 2021, Rush said. Possibly as soon as January.

The church isn’t wrapped around him as a pastor, but around an expanding community of service. At the core of that is the church’s vision of building community and serving others through an “all are welcome” approach, Rush said. That includes recognizing the diversity in the Katy area and offering services in languages other than English. That includes services in Mandarin Chinese and Spanish, currently, though other languages are expected in time.

“I hope that this building is a blessing to all the rooftops around us and all these people,” Rush said. “More importantly I hope that this building becomes a conduit of blessing to the world.”

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