Our Story - How We Got Started
While in a close knit Bible study group in college, God gave Pastor Ed Allen a vision for church which focused on building Christian community. Based on deep and honest spiritual relationships that had developed in this group, Ed realized that church could be more than a worship service and Sunday School. Church should be a dynamic environment where people's lives intersect more than just once a week. Church should be a place where people know each other, where they love and care for one another and point each other to God in good times and bad.
In 1996, after 12 years as pastor of an inner city church in Boston, Pastor Allen and his wife Diane, accepted a call from First Baptist Church of Alexandria, VA, to start a new church in the Dulles area of Northern Virginia. In February 1997, a core group of 20 people began meeting to get to know one another, to learn about Christian community and to seek God's guidance for starting this church. This group decided to call itself Gateway Community Church.
In September 1997, Gateway Community Church began holding Sunday service at Floris Elementary School in Herndon, Virginia. At that same time, Home Fellowship groups started meeting in different homes. These groups were, and continue to be, places where people can meet with others to learn who God is and to grow spiritually.
We began inviting friends and neighbors who were not plugged into a church. After much prayer and hard work, Easter Sunday, 1998, was an incredibly exciting event–the grand opening of Gateway Community Church! The following year in November 1998, God blessed us with an opportunity to move to Rachel Carson Middle School in Herndon, Virginia, where we stayed for almost 11 years. In October 2009, God blessed us with another opportunity to move to Mercer Middle School in the Stone Ridge community in Aldie, VA, just blocks from our church property in South Riding.
Gateway continues to see God bless us in the areas of spiritual, financial and numerical growth. We are excited to see what God has for us over the coming years.