Three years ago, a small group of Highrockers set out from Highrock Brookline with the vision to launch a new Highrock church in Boston.
Three years ago, a small group of Highrockers set out from Highrock Brookline with the vision to launch a new Highrock church in Boston. Their desire was to be a diverse, intergenerational, invitational church family that saw the physical and spiritual renewal of Southwest Boston (Hyde Park, Roslindale, and West Roxbury), seeing many come to know and return to Jesus. They began meeting in 2017 to pray and to follow the Lord’s leading as they developed this new church. Highrock Southwest Boston (HRSWB) officially launched its weekly worship services in Roslindale on May 19, 2019.
The Lord blessed this community in many ways over the last three years. HRSWB sought to help people connect deeply to God in their personal lives, especially through praying together daily and exploring spiritual disciplines like Sabbath and listening to the Lord. They connected to God’s purposes in Boston through initiatives such as volunteering to clean up Roslindale, starting an English conversation class for English language learners, throwing an annual Christmas Bash and Benefit to support a local charity, and in other efforts put on by their launch team. They held numerous gatherings to deepen spiritual community through fellowship over a meal and scripture in neighborhood-based groups, bi-weekly discipleship triads, and a weekly Women’s bible study. There has been great life, love, and joy in the church, even in this challenging time.
Yet God has not brought HRSWB to the place either the Highrock Network or the members of HRSWB had anticipated. Over the years, HRSWB faced many unforeseen challenges which made the kind of numerical growth required for a new church plant difficult in the best of times. These challenges were compounded by the social distancing restrictions imposed during the current pandemic. The obstacles to the church have made it unrealistic to expect that the church plant project will reach its goals. Therefore, the executive board of the Highrock Network made the difficult decision to end the church plant project at the end of May. Pastor Andy and Lisa will be assisting members of the church in transitioning to new churches as HRSWB officially closes its doors.
The story does not end there for HRSWB. Members of the church will be like seeds scattered to different churches around the Boston area, bringing their gifts and experiences in HRSWB to these new locations. While we mourn the ending of this chapter, we are grateful for the years of faithful labor from those involved in HRSWB and know that their “labor in the Lord is not in vain” (1 Cor. 15:58).
“In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.” (Proverbs 16:9). We don’t always recognize why the Lord takes us on the journeys he does, but we trust in God’s unfailing love and faithfulness to us.
In HRSWB, we’ve been focusing on three disciplines during this time of transition: lamenting the loss of this community, celebrating with joy the wonderful community that God created, and listening carefully to the leading of the Holy Spirit for how God might guide us forward.
We would like to thank everyone who has invested sacrificially in this community over the past three years, especially those on the HRSWB launch team, who tirelessly poured themselves out for God’s purposes. On behalf of HRSWB, we’d like to thank the Highrock Network and the Evangelical Covenant Church for their support, as well as Highrock Brookline for their generous support through finances, through sending members to be a part of the launch team, and through pastoral encouragement and counsel. We’re deeply grateful for the Highrock Network’s generous support for our family as we transition.