"Calvary Chapel is an evangelical association of Christian churches with over one thousand congregations worldwide. Calvary Chapel also maintains a number of radio stations around the world and operates many local Calvary Chapel Bible College programs. It presents itself as a "fellowship of churches" in contrast to a denomination...
"Beginning in 1965 in Southern California, this fellowship of churches grew out of Chuck Smith's Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa. Calvary Chapels place great importance in the practice of expository teaching, a "verse by verse, chapter by chapter, book by book" approach to teaching the Bible. Typically, Calvary Chapels operate under a senior pastor-led system of church government, sometimes referred to as the "Moses" model..." (Link 2.)
"Calvary Spokane grew out of a series of informal meetings held at the Ridpath Hotel in 1981 by a small group of Christians from Idaho. Jim Kempner, an evangelist with the Calvary fellowship in Costa Mesa, led these initial gatherings and became the first pastor as the group moved to Willard Elementary School in September 1981.
"Soon, over 400 people were attending, and the group purchased an old church at 708 W. Nora Street in May 1982.
"God blessed this ministry as the church grew in numbers and spiritual maturity. In 1986, the church added a daily radio program, Matters of the Heart, which was heard on a number of independent radio stations around the country until December 2009.
"Expanding as far as possible in this facility and believing God was leading, in 1989, Calvary Spokane purchased a major portion of the Fairwood Shopping Center which offered the potential for 80,000 square feet of space for a sanctuary, meeting rooms and classroom spaces. With severely limited financial resources and mostly volunteer construction help, the first phase was completed in seven months with initial church services beginning in October 1990. Services were held in this "temporary" facility until our new sanctuary was complete. In November 1997, with the Lord's blessing, we completed our new 1,500-seat sanctuary.
"Today, many changes have taken place, but our focus remains the same – to bring glory to our Lord through the study of His Word, and having been impacted by His Word, to make His name known "to the ends of the earth." (See Link 1.)
Fairwood Shopping Center at 511 W. Hastings Rd. in the Mead area of North Spokane has been adapted well to serve the needs of Calvary. The dove outline above the front entrance is the symbol of the Holly Spirit. (See photo above.)
The sprawling maze of room makes possible the 1500 seat sanctuary.
Two areas are set up in a lounge cafe style, one of which is designed specifically for the use of the large teen congregation. There is also a gym that can be used for social and community outreach events. The Sunday School rooms have been decorated in Bible themes, such as the Noah's Ark room for the 2 year old's. (See photo below.)
Photos: Taken in 2011 by SW.
Link 1: http://www.calvaryspokane.com/home/about-us/
Link 2: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calvary_Chapel