Can you really start a church in your living room? Why would you want to?
Go back 40 years, and you’d be hard-pressed to find a church near Loudoun County that believed in historic Presbyterianism. For that matter, churches across many denominations had moved away from their roots and abandoned teachings such as the authority of scripture in all of life, and the fall of man and his need for a redeemer in Christ alone.
Do you remember that living room group we mentioned? Given Bethel’s eventual place in Leesburg, most people don’t realize the founding members first met in Herndon. These couples craved a deeper knowledge of God and a whole-souled commitment to Christ. As they grew in their commitment to their Savior, they prayerfully launched Bethel Chapel in the Herndon Municipal building led by Ed Urban. In 1969 The fledgling church moved from Herndon to a large historic house near downtown Leesburg where it shared space with the tiny, new Leesburg Christian School.
Just one year later, in 1970, Bethel became a separate and self-sustaining church within the Presbytery of Philadelphia. As more churches joined the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, new Presbyteries were created and Bethel became, and remains, a part of the Presbytery of the Mid-Atlantic.
In 1980, the growing congregation dedicated a brick church building on a large lot just south of Leesburg. That big piece of land is significant because it would allow the church to continue to grow physically. In the fall of 2010, with programs such as vacation Bible school overflowing the existing facility, construction crews broke ground on an extension to house new offices, Sunday School rooms, and a huge fellowship hall. Work crews expanded the sanctuary in 2014.
Bethel continues to worship Christ and to serve the Leesburg community. Would you like to become part of the Bethel story?
Continuing to grow
The expansion beginning in 2010 used a unique concrete wall design. Builders placed lightweight foam panels over the initial steel frames and ran tubing through the frames. The forms were then filled with concrete. The foam, concrete, and water-filled tubing saves energy by enabling the building to resist fluctuations in temperature.