Northeast Tarrant

121 Community Church holds first service at new Grapevine home

Exterior building renderings of 121 Community Church.
Exterior building renderings of 121 Community Church. Star-Telegram archives

When 121 Community Church holds its first services at its new 52,000-square-foot building, members of the nondenominational church say it will be a blessing to be in a home of their own.

Lead Pastor Ross Sawyers said that after years of prayer, “God led us to this strategic location and provided the means for us to pursue this vision.”

It was a long journey that began in 1999 when Sawyers and his fledgling congregation of 23 held their first worship service in a Colleyville member’s home “after much prayer and conversation.”

The lead pastor said the gathering “was God’s idea, and we boldly acted upon that belief.”

Seven months later, members leased a facility on William D. Tate Avenue in Grapevine,and in 2006, they moved into a leased building on Mustang Drive. But the congregation continued to grow.

In August 2015, 121 Community Church members held a groundbreaking ceremony at 2701 Ira E. Woods Ave., for a church that can serve hundreds more on a Sunday.

“The past few years, we’ve been looking for a more permanent site to do the things that we believe God would like us to do,” Sawyers told the City Council in 2015 in the church’s zoning application request, which was unanimously approved. “We want to be a part of both individual and community transformations.”

Sawyers appeared before the City Council again April 4, this time to provide an update and to thank the City Council and city staff for their support.

He spoke of delivering a message two days earlier at their old building, saying he was “profoundly grateful” for what they had accomplished.

Sawyers praised city staff who helped them, including the engineering and planning departments.

“It’s been a great experience over the last couple of years,” Sawyers said. “Over 500 people — including my brother, who served as contractor — stepped up to give, serve and be a part of the things we are doing.”

His brother, Randy Sawyers, owns Grand Prairie-based Sawyers Construction Inc.

Ross Sawyers told the City Council that on April 9, the church would hold Sunday worship services at 9:15 a.m., 11 a.m. and 5 p.m.

Sawyers said it was an amazing feeling to watch the transformation of their ministry from 23 to about 800 members.

“We will love and serve our community and we will do that well,” he said.

The facility was built on 6.5 acres of land purchased on Ira E. Woods between Mustang Drive and Texas 114. The worship space seats nearly 900 people.

Executive Pastor Joe Sanchez said about 1,000 adults and 500 children attend Sunday services.

“We’re very family oriented,” Sanchez said. “We have a lot of young families.”

Sawyers said that the location of the new building meets two goals.

“First, city, school and community leaders told us the families along Mustang Drive have critical needs that can only be met by being embedded in the community,” Sawyers said.

“Second, the visibility along Highway 26 draws attention to the work that God is doing in and through the church body at 121. The land is centrally located, just a short distance from two high school stadiums.”

Marty Sabota: 817-390-7367, @martysabota