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From humble origins to a global presence: Life.Church celebrates 25 years of ministry

by Chantalle Edmunds

It launched in a two-car garage in Oklahoma in 1996 and is now known internationally for its missional use of technology, Life.Church is celebrating its first 25 years of ministry this month.

"When my wife Amy and I started Life.Church, we felt called to create a place where people could come just as they are to experience the life-changing love and grace of Jesus," said Co-founder, Craig Groeschel. "In these first 25 years, God has done even more than we could imagine. It has grown our faith, and we're more passionate than ever to continue reaching people around the world with the good news of the Gospel."

Life.Church has witnessed dramatic growth over the last quarter of a century and has a presence in 36 locations in 11 states. Virtually it connects with communities worldwide thanks to the launch in 2006 of Life.Church Online and the YouVersion Bible App in 2008.

There are currently 90 Life.Church Online services throughout the week. From its launch in just two languages, the Bible App now offers the Bible in 1,500 languages and has been downloaded on more than 450 million unique devices worldwide.

Life.Church also has more than 900 volunteers in 50 countries who assist with live prayer, encouragement, and pastoring.

"Technology allows us to go and make disciples in ways that weren't possible in the past. With these tools, we're able to digitally reach people who might never walk through the doors of a physical church," said Bobby Gruenewald, Life.Church Pastor, Innovation Leader and YouVersion Founder.  "As a church, we're passionate about using every tool within our grasp to spread God's truth and love across the planet."

Church leaders speak of generosity as a cornerstone of the Life.Church culture and the church has given away millions of free ministry resources through its Open Network to help equip church pastors and leaders worldwide. In addition, Life.Church has given more than $40 million to 80 local and global non-profit organizations,

"We tried to give away any type of resource that we could create for other churches and then created the YouVersion Bible App which we have been honoured to give now to over 450 million people for free and we just really believe that God honoured that heart of generosity," Groeschel added.

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