Victory International Worship Center, of Landover, Md., reflecting its open-door philosophy and its vision of engaging the entire community, is changing its name to “eChurch”—Everybody’s Church.
“We changed the name of our church to cast a wider net into our community,” said Pastor Damon Parran, in an interview with the AFRO. “We wanted to have a name that captured people’s attention, a name they could relate to [as belonging to] a place where everyone could come, because we believe Jesus died for everybody.”
Though the church has a mostly African-American congregation of about 70 weekly attendees, Parran said they realized more Hispanics and Africans were moving into the community.
“So we wanted to show that although we are a primarily African-American church, that it is open to Hispanics, Africans, Caucasians, Asians—everybody is welcome,” including young people, said the 37-year-old minister, who began his pastorate at age 24.
“I’m a young pastor so we [also] wanted to give the church a new-generation feel,” he said. The church uses digital technologies, including live streaming of services over the Internet.
The unique name is also meant to resonate with people of different backgrounds, no matter where they are in their spiritual journey. It is an extension of the church’s efforts to strengthen community outreach and services to local residents across Prince George’s County. For example, last weekend eChurch conducted its second outreach of the year, passing out soup and socks to the homeless in the Landover area.
“Our goal is to infuse life and God’s love into people and families through engaging, powerful worship services that offer biblical truth in relevant and practical ways,” said Parran in a statement. “To do that, we need to let people know that when they come to eChurch, nobody will be looked down upon or turned away. We guarantee they’ll have the best and most encouraging experience they’ve ever had in a church.”
The pastor said the name change may already be having an impact—a Nigerian family recently joined their ranks.
Church members, too, seem to be excited by the name change and what it reflects. “Everyone needs a place where they can come and learn about Christ just as they are—with no holds barred—a place where everybody can come and develop a thriving relationship with Christ and experience a changed life,” said Yvette Banks in a statement. “Everyone is welcomed, everyone is working, everyone is involved, everyone is developing and sharing. I pray that Everybody’s Church will ignite a movement of falling in love with Christ, affecting not just the immediate community, but everywhere.”
eChurch is located on the 1900 block of Columbia Ave., in Landover, Md. Service times are Sunday at 9 a.m. and Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. for prayer and Bible study. Visitors and members are can come early for coffee & fellowship.