Monthly Archives: December 2014

Pastor Mike’s Weekly E-news Message

Dear Hope Family,

On the morning of December 24, I posted this on my Facebook wall before we started our run of six Christmas Eve Candlelight services, and I share it with you again today in a humble effort to bring some perspective to what just happened at Hope…

Look closer at the crowds on Christmas Eve, and you’ll discover God at work – using a song, a word, a light – to awaken one sleeper, to find one wanderer, to comfort one mourner, to stir one soul, to fill one heart … God is certainly not dead, nor is his church. Come and see!

Well, they came and saw (because you invited them – thank you)! Our Christmas (Eve & Day) celebrations at Hope were glorious! The Spirit was strong, the music and movement of the service was beautiful, and God’s house was full. Over 29,000 people attended at our West Des Moines campus, and counting all of Hope’s satellites, that number goes even higher. Several hundred joy-filled volunteers helped in so many essential ways – thank you, again!

The world around us longs for the light. We have received this light, and our all-out effort to let it shine through us to as many people as possible is a worthy endeavor. It’s no accident that God has brought us together to be church together in this particular time and place. As we wrap up this year of Roots & Renewal and look forward to a new year of getting Back to Basics (know Jesus & know one another), I’m more committed and enthused than ever to carry out our mission … it’s good to be the church!

This weekend, our Light the Night theme from Christmas Eve carries on. A trio of gifted preachers who’ve been preparing diligently for several weeks – Perry Ross, Dave Johnson and Ben Mason – will help us take a closer look at the shining star the Magi (more commonly referred to as wise men) followed on their way to worship the newborn King of all kings, Jesus Christ (Matthew 2:1-12). It would be wise for us to attend (couldn’t resist the pun)!

Merry Christmas!
Mike Housholder

Pastor Mike’s Weekly E-news

Good morning, Hope!

It’s almost time …

On Saturday and Sunday nights, our talented and dedicated Praise! and Adoration Choirs, along with the Hope Orchestra, will present a Christmas Cantata: We’re Glad You Came - Saturday at 5:00 & 7:00 pm (added service this weekend only) and Sunday at 5:00 pm. All three services will feature a musical version of the Christmas story, along with an accompanying message by Pastor Pat Quaid.

Our regular format Sunday Services (Advent 4) will be led by Pastor Nicole Woodley in the Chapel at 8:00 & 9:15 am, and guest preacher, Pastor Michael Hurst, in the Worship Center at 8:00, 9:15 & 11:00 am.

The next day, it will be time for Hope’s Christmas Eve Candlelight Services:

  • Monday the 22nd at 5:00 pm
  • Tuesday the 23rd at 5:00 & 7:00 pm
  • Wednesday the 24th at 1:00, 3:00, 5:00, 7:00, 9:00 & 11:00 pm

These are some of the most inspiring services of the year at Hope, featuring music by John Cheatem (and an amazing line-up of musicians), live painting by Bill Butler (or another gifted Hope artist), classic Christmas carols (including Silent Night by candlelight), and some beautifulsurprises! Pastor Jeremy and I will be preaching onLuke 2:1-14 with a sermon called Light the Night!

Unapologetically, we pull out all the stops at Hope on Christmas Eve, and for good reason. We want to introduce people to Jesus, and strengthen the faith of people who already know him. We want to glorify God as we celebrate the birth of our Savior. We want to offer Christmas services that show people how the light of God’s love changes everything for us and for our world …  forever!

Come and see for yourself. And invite your friends. It’s almost time …

Mike Housholder

PS1- A few tips for my faithful readers … some of our best singers will offer pre-service music starting about 15-20 minutes before each service, so arrive early; consider parking in the shuttle lots, with buses that will drop you off and pick you up at our front doors; the least crowded services tend to be early (22nd & 23rd) and late (24th at 7:00, 9:00 & 11:00 pm).

PS2- Hope’s Christmas Day Communion Service takes place Thursday at 10:00 am. Pastor Eric Voelker’s sermon is called “Go Tell It On the Mountain!” based on Matthew 1:18-25.

PS3- Our humble little video invitation to Hope’s Christmas Eve Services has now been viewed by over 500,000 people – feel free to share it with your friends on social media!

Good afternoon, Hope folks!

Our worship line-up this weekend at Hopeincludes some unique and diverse seasonal choices …

The kids of Hope will serve as our song leaders at three services - Saturday at 5:00 pm, Sunday at 9:15 & 11:00 am - presenting their musical and meaningful KQ (Kingdom Quest) Christmas Program called “Hakuna Cantata”(even the title is creative!).Gifted communicator and longtime faithful minister to students, Mark Brandt, will preach. All are encouraged to attend, as the children remind us how to worship the Lord, and how important they are in God’s Kingdom (Matthew 19:1421:17Luke 18:17).

We also have more familiar worship options for the third Sunday in Advent in Hope’s Chapel (8:00 & 9:15 am) and Worship Center (8:00 am & 5:00 pm).Jeremy Johnson and Josh Linman, two exceptional young preachers, will share a sermon based on Psalm 145:9-21 entitled “To Infinty … and Beyond!”

The weekend before Christmas is set for Hope’sChristmas Cantata, presented by the Praise Choir and Hope Orchestra, followed the next day by the first of nine Christmas Eve Candlelight Services(featuring special offerings of music, dance and art by John Cheatem, Lori Grooters, Bill Butler … and many more!).

This can be the most wonderful time of year, because we get to worship a God who loves us so much that he chose to become one of us. I hope you’ll make time and prepare him room, letting God fill your heart with his real and lasting joy this Christmas!


Mike Housholder

P.S.- Here’s a fun Christmas video from our Video Production Crew at Hope … because we’re all about that Babe (in the manger)!


Pastor Mike’s Weekly E-news

Good morning, Hope folks!

As most of you already know, Hope is a multisite church with five locations around the Des Moines area. Last weekend, I took advantage of a preaching break to worship at three of them – West Des Moines on Saturday, and then Waukee and Johnston-Grimes on Sunday.

I’m happy to report that the Holy Spirit was on full display at each location. Worship was lively. God’s love, and plenty of Lutheran coffee, flowed freely. Smiles came easily. And, all five campuses are growing rapidly …

Over 500 people worshiped at Hope Waukee (they’re only one month old!) last weekend, and close to 600 (new record!) did the same at Hope Johnston-Grimes. Hope Ankeny topped 1,000 (way up!), and more than 400 attended Hope Des Moines (also way up, and moving into a new church building this Sunday!). In case you’re wondering, attendance at our main campus in West Des Moines is also up significantly this year, with more than 8,000 people attending services on an average weekend.

The best part about those numbers is they count real people, many of whom didn’t know Jesus prior to attending Hope. The way God continues to build and grow his Kingdom through you is exciting – and it happens because you haven’t lost your passion for mission. Thanks for caring enough to lead people to a place where their lives can be changed … forever!


Mike Housholder

P.S.- This weekend, Pastor Richard and I will preach on Revelation 19 – a biblical vision of a final battle (that inspired a famous “Battle Hymn”) between good and evil …  and it has everything to do with you! Bring a Bible, and keep bringing your friends who don’t have a church home, too!