Spring Creek Church
|Spring Creek Church|
|Denomination||Non-Denominational, Evangelical Christian|
|Senior pastor(s)||Chip Bernhard|
The church was founded in 1881 as Garfield Baptist Church when a small group of Christians started a mission church. The church's earliest days unfolded in a small, wooden-frame building on the corner of Second Street and Garfield Avenue in Milwaukee.
By 1951 a new building was added adjacent to the old one, housing the growing number of congregants. In 1964, continued growth mandated another move, this time to the suburb of Wauwatosa. In the decades to follow, a Bible school and a AWANA program trained children. Involvement in worldwide missions also expanded to include dozens of families serving around the globe.
In 1987, William "Chip" Bernhard was installed as senior pastor. Under Bernhard, the 1990s were marked by growth. Once again outgrowing facilities, Garfield Baptist relocated to 99 acres (400,000 m2) of land in Pewaukee. In October 1997, the congregation drove down Capitol Drive to the new facility. In 2001, the congregation voted to change the name of the church to Spring Creek Church, which better reflected the new location and the church's desire to reach beyond its traditional Baptist roots.
Also in 2001, Spring Creek completed the Building for the Harvest capital campaign and opened a new $4.2 million 850-seat worship center. After doubling attendance in the decade since moving to Pewaukee, in early 2008, construction began on the And 1 campaign, which included a $6 million expansion to the worship center (increasing capacity to nearly 2,000), a new foyer, bookstore, coffee bar, and Christian education wing. The project was completed in January 2009.
Spring Creek has faced serious hurdles with regard to the planned use of their Pewaukee property. In December 2003, the church filed a lawsuit in Waukesha County Circuit Court to prevent the Wisconsin Energy Corporation from building an electrical substation on a portion of the property. Among the reasons for the suit, cited at the time, was the church's plan to build facilities for a day care and senior housing. The church assisted the energy company in locating a different parcel of land, ending the legal battle.
- Heinen, Tom (August 6, 2005). "Churches, Just Without the Label". WashingtonPost.com/ Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.
- Doege, David (January 29, 2004). "Utility plan may hinder church growth". JSOnline/Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.
- Doege, David (April 27, 2004). "Church, utility set to end legal battle". JSOnline/Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.