AUTHOR: Carolyn Savage | POSTED: October 10, 2011 | COMMENTS: 2 Comments
Two Catholics plus 500 Baptists equals what? Well, as it turns out, an absolutely wonderful afternoon. This past week Sean and I had the pleasure of traveling to Plano, Texas, to speak at a luncheon hosted by Prestonwood Baptist Church. The event was booked five months ago, when Prestonwood invited us to be their featured speakers at their weekly Power Lunch held every Tuesday afternoon. We flew to Dallas the day before our talk, in order to ensure that we wouldn’t miss opportunity to share our story due to a air travel mishap. This meant I had to prepare a small army of relatives and friends to take care of our brood, in our absence. The trip seemed like a good idea when I made the reservations this past summer, but I have to admit that as I prepared to leave our five kids including our almost eight week old daughters, I pondered faking an illness or injury to get out of the commitment. Thank God I didn’t. What an experience!
In an attempt to do due diligence while preparing for this opportunity, I researched Prestonwood to make sure we knew who our audience was going to be (and that we didn’t make fools of our ourselves while we were there). In doing so, I learned that this church has over 30,000 members. It’s main campus, located in Plano, sits on 150 acres and houses a worship center that seats 7500, a school that educates 1200 students from preschool through grade twelve, a second chapel for smaller worship services (this smaller chapel was bigger than our church), two book stores, a full service café, and a beautiful atrium for members to enjoy their time on campus. While touring the campus we learned that Prestonwood facilitates over thirty weekly bible studies, has fifty ordained ministers on staff, and employs more than 500 people (their academy also has one two consecutive Texas state championships a feat that wasn’t lost on Sean!). To say we were impressed would be an understatement. We were blown away!
That being said, let me tell you the most profound observation we made during our visit. We didn’t meet a a person there, who didn’t exude love for others. From the custodians, to the media people, to the members we were able to meet after our talk, kindness and commitment to their calling as Christians poured out of each and every one of them. Just being there was a testimony to the goodness that can come from people who believe in something rooted in love.
We are Catholic. They are Baptist. We have different beliefs about baptism, salvation, and scripture; our religious traditions are—well—pretty different. But during our visit to Prestonwood, we recognized a commonality that made our differences seem insignificant. That was our shared commitment to being beacons of light, hope and love in a world that craves goodness. I’m so glad we went! I hope to make it back there some day. It truly was a very spiritual place!
To learn more about Prestonwood, visit their website here!
Sean and I before our talk at Prestonwood’s Power Lunch!