The Rock Church (San Diego)
|Location||2277 Rosecrans St., San Diego, CA 92106|
|Weekly attendance||15,000 +|
|Senior pastor(s)||Miles McPherson|
The Rock Church is an evangelical megachurch located in San Diego, California, with five campuses located in Point Loma, San Marcos, El Cajon, San Ysidro, and City Heights. Miles McPherson, a former NFL player, has served as senior pastor since he founded the church in 2000. With an average weekly attendance of more than 19,000 as of January 2016 at four weekly services at each campus, as well as live online streaming, the Rock is one of the largest churches in San Diego.
Rock Church held its first service at San Diego State University in 2000. Two years later, Rock Academy opened its doors to students. In 2005 the Rock began construction on their new building at Liberty Station and two years later, the new campus was open.
The Rock was quickly named the second fastest growing church in America and continued to grow over the years offering over 100 outreach ministries to establish Pervasive Hope throughout San Diego. In 2010 Rock Church North County opened, followed by the East County campus in 2013, San Ysidro campus in 2014, and City Heights in 2015. Rock Church also has two thrift stores, located in Point Loma and El Cajon).
Point Loma Campus
The Point Loma Campus is 244,000 sq ft (22,700 m2) building located in the historic Liberty Station. The building has been compared in size to Noah's Ark (443 feet long and 45 feet (14 m) high) and includes state-of-the art Christian education facilities, office space, and a 3,500 seat worship center. Because of the large size of the sanctuary, it is often used for high-profile funerals, such as those for police officers killed in the line of duty. The Point Loma campus also served as a shelter and resource center during the wildfires that spread across San Diego in 2007.
Adjacent to the church is the Rock Academy, a private Christian school serving preschool through 12th grade with more than 400 students.
McPherson encourages churchgoers to demonstrate the love of God through service in their communities. McPherson, who has published several books, released Do Something: Make Your Life Count in 2009, which focuses on helping individuals do something in their communities.
The Rock offers more than 150 external ministries for members to serve in. These include ministries that work in prisons, homeless shelters, strip clubs, hospital oncology wings, with military families, and more. In 2015, the church donated more than 220,000 hours of service on projects for the City of San Diego as designated by Mayor Kevin Faulconer and other community leaders, at an estimated value of $4 million.
The church mobilizes volunteers throughout the year to tackle beautification projects chosen by community leaders. In March 2012 and September 2011, volunteers cleaned up the Jackie Robinson YMCA and the Barrio Logan neighborhood. The church also hosts large charity events such as the annual December Toys for Joy event, which gives toys, groceries, clothing, and personal services to families in need.
In its previous location in Serra Mesa, neighbors complained about traffic and parking issues. The city fined the church in 2006 for violating the terms of its use permit, and the head of the local community planning board said "We're happy to see them go."
The church's current location in the middle of Point Loma has also led to conflicts with the neighborhood over traffic and parking issues, leading to numerous complaints and a multimillion-dollar class-action lawsuit against Liberty Station’s developer, Corky McMillin Companies. In May 2012 the San Diego County Grand Jury issued a report concluding that the church's location in an area designated for education use is inappropriate, and recommending that the city "Suspend the current Conditional Use Permit for the Rock Academy and Church pending a review for compliance and compatibility with the NTC Precise Plan and Local Coastal Program report (September 2001) and determine the church’s appropriateness for that area." However, in August the mayor said he would not suspend the church's permit, describing the proposed suspension as "unreasonable".
- Burgin, Aaron (May 24, 2012). "Grand jury suggests suspending Rock Church's permit; Traffic problems raise issue of land use for building approved only as a school". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 25 May 2012.
- Dolbee, Sandi (August 18, 2007). "A mighty presence". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 25 May 2012.
- "Funeral services for slain San Diego police officer". KFMB-AM. November 4, 2010. Retrieved 25 May 2012.
- Perry, Tony (August 13, 2011). "Thousands attend funeral for slain San Diego police officer". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 25 May 2012.
- Kuhney, Jan Lebron (October 15, 2011). "Hundreds attend funeral of officer killed in car crash". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 25 May 2012.
- "Grand jury: Rock Church too big for Liberty Station". CBS-8 San Diego. May 25, 2012. Retrieved 25 May 2012.
- Hansen, Bob (December 4, 2010). "Class-Action Lawsuit Filed Over The Rock Church". NBC San Diego. Retrieved 25 May 2012.
- "Traffic Congestion in the Liberty Station Area" (PDF). San Diego County Grand Jury. May 24, 2012. Retrieved 25 May 2012.
- Steussy, Lauren (August 22, 2012). "Mayor Won't Suspend Rock Church Permit". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 13 October 2012.
- Miles McPherson - official website
- The Rock Church - official website
- DO Something: Make Your Life Count
- The Rock Academy - Official Website
- Rock's School of Ministry - IMPACT195