Wednesday Dec 19 2012
Bayside’s Christmas glow extends into Rocklin
By: Amanda Calzada, Placer Herald Correspondent
Roseville church plans expansion here
Both the calendar and the church building itself impose no constraints on the Christmas spirit for Bayside Church of Roseville, as Rocklin now welcomes Bayside services for the holiday season.
“In spite of all the challenges in that can happen in our lives, you will walk out of one of these services with real reasons to be hopeful in your life and world,” said Pastor Curt Harlow, who said 4,200 individuals attended a Bayside service for Christmas last year, 700 over the projected attendance.
Whitney High School was selected as a location after hosting successful Easter services in its theater earlier this year and also to support teenagers and young adults.
“Bayside will also live stream services on Facebook, as it did last year,” said Olivia Ragan, of Rocklin, a Bayside member. “I think it's great that we are expanding even more and getting the message out there.”
The church has considered holding services in Rocklin for the last two years as a means of growing the church to families north of Interstate 80 who are not affiliated with a spiritual organization.
Also in the works for the church is an expansion into Rocklin.
“We are actively planning a weekly Rocklin area new campus launch and are assembling our core team,” Harlow said. “We do not have a specific location or exact timing outlined at this point.”
Although Bayside is of the Evangelical Covenant Church, it welcomes all denomination and backgrounds through an atmosphere of grace, Harlow said.
“Regardless of what you believe, you will walk out saying, ‘The people I love are important to me, and I’ve been reminded how much I love them,’” said Harlow, who said people should attend a service if they want to grow closer to people in their lives.
The candlelight services, a Bayside signature tradition, allow people to connect with others in the audience by lighting each others’ candles to watch the room glow.
Johnston will deliver a special message targeted for the Rocklin community at Whitney High.
Designed to be more intimate than the services at the Roseville campus, the Rocklin candlelight services champion a theme of hope in the season through a “Polar Express” theme for children. The inspiration, however, translates from Roseville services to Rocklin’s through silhouette dancing coupled with the music of recording artist Lincoln Brewster.
All of the proceeds from Brewster’s Christmas music, an auction at Bayside and the donations toward tickets will fund Bayside’s compassion project targeted at aiding the children of the Congo region in Africa.
To date, Bayside has delivered a quarter of a million dollar pledge to the children of the Congo. The photographed faces of 300 Congolese children currently hang in the church. Bayside aims to supply each one the food, care, and education he or she needs. Local and global funds for 2012 compassion projects sum at $1 million and counting.
Bayside also celebrated the largest food drive in Placer County history at 65,000 pounds of food earlier this year to the Placer County Food Bank.
The projects’ hope and compassion are integrated into the holiday services.
At every service, 500 seats are saved for people who were not able to secure tickets in advance.
“Christmas is about unleashing compassion,” Harlow said. “Every seat that gets saved will also help to save a child in the Congo.”