Hope Presbyterian Church
|Denomination||Evangelical Presbyterian Church|
|Weekly attendance||6,874 (2014)|
|Senior pastor(s)||Rev. Rufus Smith Previous: Dr. Craig Strickland (1988-2013)|
Hope Church is an Evangelical Presbyterian in Cordova, a district of Memphis, Tennessee. Rev. Rufus Smith is the Senior Pastor, Rev. Eli Morris is the Senior Associate Pastor and Dr. R. Craig Strickland is the Founding Pastor. It describes itself as a "church for the unchurched". Hope is a part of the EPC (epc.org) denomination.
It all began in 1988 when Craig Strickland, a pastor at Second Presbyterian Church, felt the call to plant a church “out east” in the suburbs of Memphis – little did he know the plans God had for a little place called Hope! Along with 25 other charter members, Craig began Hope in the living room of a Germantown home in September 1988. Nine months after Hope’s conception, Eli Morris came to Hope bringing a strong passion and big heart for inner city missions. Still to this day, Hope’s Urban Ministry is thriving in the North Memphis communities with many opportunities of offering a better life for the families we work with. From that Germantown living room, Hope moved to rented space at Shelby Place Restaurant (currently The Butcher Shop), then to Evangelical Christian School’s gymnasium where they spent the next seven years. In 1992, Hope purchased their first piece of land, 22 acres, at 8500 Walnut Grove Road in Cordova. They moved into their first permanent worship space in 1996, which is now home to Hope’s Student Ministry. Since that day, Hope’s continued growth over the next 10 years made it one of America’s largest 100 churches, with weekend services averaging 7000 in attendance. It also made way for multiple building expansions to accommodate our children’s, recreation and kitchen ministries, and a recording studio, just to name a few. Now providing over 30 different ministries, serving thousands of people from Memphis to the Bronx to Belize, Hope Church has expanded beyond the wildest dreams from a meager upstart over 25 years ago. Craig and Eli’s prayers were met when Rev. Rufus Smith agreed to leave his hometown of Houston, Texas, to join the preaching/teaching team in 2010. Over the next three years, Craig, Eli and Rufus worked through a transition of positions. They aspired that Hope’s congregation would represent a Mosaic culture, just as the leadership now modeled themselves. Hope celebrated 25 years in September 2013, and in November, Rufus was voted in to take the position of Senior Pastor. Craig moved to Founding Pastor role, where he still maintains an active and visible position within our leadership. No one fills the Senior Associate Pastor shoes better than Eli, and this is truly where God has continued to call him to serve.
HOPE IS A MEMBER OF THE EVANGELICAL PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH The information below is an excerpt from the EPC website. If you would like more specific information, we encourage you to visit .
The EPC is a family of churches, Reformed and Presbyterian, defined by shared core values and bonded by the fellowship of the Holy Spirit. The EPC is a church family centered upon the good news of what God has done for the world through His Son, Jesus Christ.
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