"that's Jakes Way, we don't go over there."
Church in the Park is a ministry that no one church gets to claim as having founded and all believers who agree with are statement of beliefs and approach to ministry are welcome to participate.
As early as 2013 some volunteers from Heart of the Canyons Church began showing up in a part of the city referred to as Jakes Way. This part of town was known for a much higher crime rate and significant gang activity.
Their team (which included Bill Romero and Dawn Hardesty, among others) started a Bible study with the kids and teens in the park.
Not long after that the Lord began speaking to Brandon Maddux, who was on staff at The Sanctuary Church, to start showing up in Jakes Way. Growing up in Santa Clarita people told him "that's Jakes Way, we don't go over there." But the Lord convicted him that this was the exact kind of place that Jesus followers were called to influence... we are called to be the light in the darkness.
The Lord also began showing them that historically, significant moves of God often begin among the most unexpected people in the most unexpected places. It doesn't stay there, but movements often start there.
He began volunteering multiple times per week in the community through the City of Santa Clarita's homework help program. And before long, he merged with the team from Heart of the Canyons in order to reach more people with the good news of Jesus.
Then COVID-19 hit and everything came to a stop for over a year.
Finally, we re-launched the ministry with the goal of not only multiplying disciples and churches in the Jakes Way community, but also multiplying the ministry into new apartment complexes around Santa Clarita.
Most of our team members are volunteers from churches around the community, but our leaders are fundraised missionaries who are aiming to see Gospel Movement(s) in Southern California.