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Church plans 'Rise Together' for community

April 11th, 2014 11:15 am by Leigh Ann Laube

Church plans 'Rise Together' for community

Preaching Christ Church will hold its Hop To It Easter Egg Hunt at Andrew Johnson Elementary School April 19. In addition to egg hunts, the event features several kid-friendly activities. (contributed)

KINGSPORT — The congregation of Preaching Christ Church invite others to "Rise Together" with them on Sunday, April 13 at the Farmers Market in downtown Kingsport. The event will feature free food, live music, and an inspirational talk and skit.

"We realize that a lot of people are intimidated by church. We get that. We understand it," said Chad Roberts, lead pastor of the church responsible for creating, a website where restaurant staffers can anonymously post stories about rude Christian patrons who flock to their restaurants after Sunday service. "We wanted a place that was non-threatening. We hope that this way we can show our community what a great church we are.

"This is a part of our strategy. We wanted to start with 'Sundays are the Worst,' then do a community gathering," he said. "We want to make it all about our community. It's about celebrating our community together."

Rise Together will begin at 9:30 a.m., with free coffee from Starbucks and free biscuits and gravy from Texas Roadhouse, while supplies last. At 11 a.m., there will be music from the church's band, an inspirational talk, and a light-hearted theatrical performance by LampLight Theatre. There will also be inflatables for the kids.

A special T-shirt commemorating the service will be available for purchase at $10 each. There will be no offering taken during the service.

"We don't want people to come and say, 'They did this for money.' The only thing not free would be the T-shirt. Everything else is free," Roberts said.

Sponsors of Rise Together are Starbucks, Texas Roadhouse, Toyota of Kingsport, Allandale Falls, Brandy Mills, The Landings, Cross Creek, Kingsport Digital Printing, Print Trends and Action Rental.

"We realize that church can be intimidating for many families, and that's why we created this. We want to make it easy for families to get connected to our church. We love when unchurched families discover our church. We love that," Roberts said.

On Saturday, April 19, Preaching Christ Church will team up with Food City for the second Hop To It Easter Egg Hunt. Last year's event featured 8,000 eggs and drew 2,500 participants to Andrew Johnson Elementary School in Kingsport. This year's event will feature 12,000 eggs hidden on the school grounds.

Registration will be held from 11 a.m. to noon., and the first of three hunts — for three different age groups — will begin at 12:30 p.m.

The event will also feature inflatables, free ice cream from Marble Slab Creamery, free hot dogs and chili from Texas Roadhouse, and free sugar cookies from Food City, while supplies last. An iPad will be given away, photos with the Easter bunny will be taken, and children will be able to decorate their sugar cookies with icing and sprinkles.
Sponsors are Food City, Texas Roadhouse, Marble Slab Creamery and 2Ton Gallery.

"All of this is very strategic. It's very well-thought-out and it's because we love our city," he said. "Our little slogan, because we're in the downtown area, we love to say 'We are in the heart of the city because we have a heart for our city.' We love to say that."

For more information on Preaching Christ Church and its events, visit

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