Courtesy of Ian Cristmann

On Sept. 12, Vox Church — a multisite nondenominational Christian church in New Haven — celebrated its 10 year anniversary by holding a church service at the Westville Music Bowl. The event brought together nearly 2,500 attendees from the Church’s 10 congregations across Connecticut and Massachusetts.

The church service lasted 90 minutes and included an episode of “corporate worship,” in which church attendees sing together. It included representatives from all of the Church’s congregations, with over 200 volunteers helping to organize the event. At the event, organizers spoke about the Church’s recent work in the community and donated items to teachers and children.

“Being a multi-sited church is extremely rare — to have all the eight of our locations to come together. I think for our entire church to be together for the service was extremely special to every single one of us,” Mike Schnepp, executive pastor of Vox Church, said in an interview.

The repertoire for the service consisted of around seven songs, including Vox Church originals such as “Grateful” and soon-to-be-released “Loyal,” as well as pieces written by other artists, according to Bru Hickey, the director of the central system — which oversees event operations and the volunteer team. Church staff members and volunteers conducted the music for attendees. According to Schnepp, this “beautiful mix of music” was created “with the soul and aim of using it [the music] to glorify the name of Jesus.”

As part of the event, Vox Church also highlighted their recent community service initiatives including assistance given to local ministry partners. Organizers said that the Church has worked on over 50 community service projects in the past two months. 

The Church emailed panlists, broadcasted their 10 year anniversary on social media and reached out to volunteers at their different locations to spread word about the service. 

“We could not have this happen without the volunteers,” said Hickey. “They were ready to do anything from cutting the pizza to getting all the coffee ready to handing out our welcome pack to people. We had so many people in our community wanting to be a part of it, just serve our church and love all the people we welcomed on that day.”

(Photo: Courtesy of Christa Bosse)

As part of the anniversary celebration, volunteers wrote appreciation letters to the Church’s members, dropped off gifts to teachers and schools and shoes to children in need.

A communion followed at the end of the event. For Justin Kendrick, lead pastor of the Vox Church, the communion was a reflection upon both challenges encountered during the pandemic and “the greats of God in the last two years to walk with us through these challenges.”

“At Vox Church, we are really grateful people,” Kendrick told the News in an interview. “We are grateful for our city, we are grateful to be a part of New Haven, and we feel that [the] best is yet to come.” 

Vox Church was founded in 2011 in New Haven.

Gamze covers music and literature news for the Arts desk and writes for the WKND. She is a sophomore in Pauli Murray majoring in psychology and humanities.