Alaska is a place of irony. It is easily one of the most beautiful spots in the world, boasting stunning scenery and teeming with wildlife. At the same time, it is a place filled with brokenness and pain. The levels of drug abuse, rape, depression, and suicide are alarmingly high among the population of Alaska. The natural beauty contrasts starkly with the very real very heavy issues that are so prevalent among its people.
ChangePoint Alaska, a local church in Anchorage, has a bold mission statement: to achieve “Life in Christ for Every Alaskan and the World Beyond.” In order to live out that mission and actively pursue that kingdom-sized goal, in 2018 they committed to a radical vision of launching 10 new campuses in 10 years.
The multi-site concept clearly works in the “Lower 49,” but the leaders of ChangePoint weren’t sure if it would work in Alaska. The state is huge, spread out, and life just works a little differently there. However, they couldn’t shake the vision of “one church, many locations,” and by stepping into what the Lord is calling them to, they are beginning to chip away at their vision for life in Christ for every Alaskan.
“People don’t care what you know, until they know that you care.”
ChangePoint’s outlook is to go where the people are. Campuses in growing communities and unreached areas have a lot of purpose, and those are exactly the places that they are going. The “if you build it, they will come” mentality is not the correct approach for reaching Alaskans, and ChangePoint understands that. They are going TO the people, just as Jesus went to the people, and they are chasing their hearts, just as Christ chases us.
Together with Amplio Group, in the summer of 2018, ChangePoint launched two new portable campuses: The Mat-Su Valley Campus reaching the people in the area of Palmer (a town 40 miles northeast of Anchorage), and the Tikahtnu Campus reaching those on the JBER military base just outside of Anchorage. A third campus is in its beginning stages in the home of the Kramer family, who are natives of Kotzebue. Kotzebue is a city situated on the Northwest Arctic Borough of Alaska, a remote peninsula with 3,200 residents. It acts as a hub city for thirteen nearby remote villages.
The people of ChangePoint are spearheading a truly impactful and world-changing mission in their state. Enable is humbled and honored to be a small part of God’s huge kingdom work that is going on there, by partnering with ChangePoint Alaska and supporting them in their technology. Underneath the layers of the vast beauty of the state, and the strong-willed gritty people who live there, there is so much pain and brokenness. ChangePoint’s desire and mission is to bring life into the darkness.
“We have the people, we have the means, and we have the technology now, to do stuff that we couldn’t have done a decade ago.”
When the leaders ChangePoint brought their “10 in 10” mission before the church, they described it this way: “If not us then who, if not now then when, if not this then what?” Changepoint is taking on this commission – the Great Commission – and pursuing it with passion and love. And that is something we are thrilled to be a part of.