If you asked me 2 years ago did I see a renewed involvement with XXXchurch as a future possibility… my answer would have been NO.
You see, back in 2019 I resigned from XXXchurch as the COO and began a new journey starting a new nonprofit ministry called Live Free. That was the second time over a seven year period that I had left XXXchurch as a Full Time employee.
And like the last time, my departure from XXXchurch was an amicable one.
No burned bridges.
No hard feelings.
Just time for a change.
And it was a good change, it turns out, as we’ve seen Live Free’s success and continued growth.
And more importantly, the past two years taught me so much about faith and trust sparking a lot of personal growth and healing.
But they say a 3rd time’s a charm, right???
About a month ago I was getting this nagging feeling that I should reach out to Craig Gross (the Exec. Director of Fireproof Ministries) and ask him about XXXchurch and a potential acquisition.
When I first started getting these thoughts I dismissed them as the effects of bad pizza.
But they continued each day. So finally I decided to indulge that little voice I kept hearing and fired off a text to Craig asking him if he’d be willing to release XXXchurch to us.
Imagine my surprise when Craig called me later that day and said… “Let’s talk.”
Three weeks later it’s official… XXXchurch is now a ministry of Live Free!
What a crazy journey…
- XXXchurch was the catalyst that led to my freedom 10 years ago.
- Two years later I get hired full time by them and leave the for profit world of insurance.
- Four year later I resigned to enter the marketing world.
- 1 year later I return as the new COO
- 2 years later I resigned… AGAIN!
- And then this happens just 2 years later.
As I said in the post I wrote when I resigned from XXXchurch (the last time)…
“Life is definitely like a puzzle, and when God is the puzzle maker, sometimes you sit there and scratch your head and wonder what the heck? But the beauty is, and this doesn’t unfortunately always happen, when we can look back and see the complete puzzle and realize that there was a master plan all along.”
So now what?
What’s this move mean for Live Free and XXXchurch?
It means this…
Live Free is still the focus.
The resources and community we’ve built over the past two years have been so transformational for so many people that my goal primary is to get these things into as many hands as possible.
And with XXXchurch’s branding and presence we’ll be able to do just that.
But this doesn’t mean that the plan is to slowly let XXXchurch fade into the sunset.
Like I said, without XXXchurch’s work I wouldn’t be where I am today.
My marriage and family wouldn’t be where it is today.
The work that we can accomplish through this platform and ministry is still significant and possesses a ton of untapped potential.
But there will be a shift…
A Rebirthed “Brand” & Vision
You might not know this, but originally the brand XXXchurch came from this idea of an unconventional mix between the “sacred” and “sinful.” Much of this was due the organization’s focus on outreach at porn shows and the like.
Plus, let’s be honest, 20 years ago the name stood out and begged for clicks so it was great for marketing purposes.
However, today is a different story. People aren’t shocked the way they used to be. The name that stirred so much curiosity back in 2002 doesn’t provoke that same level of interest.
Yet it’s a great name and it’s one that we want to leverage to communicate a message of inclusion.
St. Augustine of Hippo once called the church “a hospital for sinners, not a museum for saints.” But as we all know, many don’t see this quality in today’s church culture. Then add the issues of porn, sex, masturbation, and infidelity to the mix and as they say in New Jersey… fuggedaboutit!
XXXchurch is going to be that place.
That “church” for anyone and everyone where they can seek healing and freedom.
That safe restorative community that stands ready to help all those seeking it.
That space where all conversations are welcome and nothing is off the table.
In a nutshell…
We will call it like we see it.
Say what needs to be said.
Not aim to offend, but if it happens so be it.
Which leads to…
A New Mission
It’s not enough to just talk about the need for restorative communities.
It’s not enough to simply point out the elephant in the room.
We’ve seen enough of this already.
Enough of, “Hey people this is a huge issue…Now go get some help but don’t bother me/us in the process and PLEASE don’t make anyone uncomfortable while you do so!”
No, there needs to be a solution if we are going to identify the problem or it’s just empty complaints.
This is why our mission is to both be a leading voice of change and a source for help.
We want to shift culture so that talking about issues like porn and sexual integrity are welcomed and not avoided, embraced and not shunned, heard without judgement. And until it changes, we will be THAT place for you.
Welcome to the NEW XXXchurch!